A Look Into Artificial Intelligence and Beyond

Topics: Mind, Computer, Cryptographic hash function Pages: 6 (2208 words) Published: June 10, 2013
Using the book “Artificial Intelligence: The Very Idea”, by John Haugeland, I have learned the meaning of artificial intelligence truly and how it integrates in the real world. In this paper I will be discussing important sections of my chosen reading, followed by a more detailed explanation on the history of artificial intelligence, and concluding with a more practical use of artificial intelligence by means of cryptography. Firstly, this paper examines artificial intelligence and its links with the development of the human mind. The idea of Artificial Intelligence has been explored since the mid-1600s, a long time before thoughts of computers and programming. Next, this paper will discuss the connection between the human mind and cryptography, which delves into how the programming of modern machines is used to manipulate objects based on a set of rules. Finally, this paper will present the idea of using cryptography to acquire bitcoins.

History of the Human Mind and the Origin of Artificial Intelligence Haugeland stated that we are all computers in one way or another, based on the fact that thinking and computing are very similar. Both thinking and computing involve receiving an input, manipulating the data, and providing an output. The first chapter of the book refers to medieval times, when religion dictated the propagation of acceptable knowledge of the world. Change of world knowledge came about with scientists like Copernicus, who disproved religious beliefs such as that the Earth was the center of the Universe. Using math and science, Copernicus confirmed that the Earth revolved around the Sun. Copernicus discoveries led to other scientists obtaining a new mentality that discredited some early religious beliefs. During this time, math and science emerged as a new way of thinking and solving problems. The transformation in thought and understanding is what Haugeland believed "invented” the modern mind and its potential. It was also the time for scientists like Galileo, who shaped our knowledge about the universe. Galileo is famous for the invention of the telescope, which helped future scientists to discover new objects in space. He is also responsible for introducing modern physics to the world and using math to solve problems related to motion. Galileo once said, “Philosophy is written in that great book, the universe, which is always open, right before our eyes. But once cannot understand this book without learning to understand the language and to know the characters in which it is written.” The language he was referring to was math, more specifically geometry. In the well known leaning tower of Pisa experiment, Galileo used algebra and geometry to prove that objects of different mass fall at the same speed. Even more in line with the theme of the book, Haugeland introduced the work of Thomas Hobbes, who is said to be the “grandfather of AI”. Hobbes was a philosopher who believed that thinking consists of symbolic operations, like adding on paper but conducted internally. Although these were ideas from the seventeenth century, they prophetically launched the concept of Artificial Intelligence. In the second chapter, Haugeland discussed digital systems and its components. He described a computer as an interpreted automatic formal system. A computer can manipulate objects, called tokens, in a system that involves automatically following algorithms. Haugeland constantly compared these systems to games like chess and tic-tac-toe, simply because these games are based on manipulating these tokens using specific rules. He also explained a digital system to be a set of positive and reliable techniques for reading and writing tokens through inputs and outputs. He then argued how a digital system can be positive, meaning the possibility of succeeding perfectly, but not reliable. Using chess as an example, computers can follow an algorithm on possible moves based on the legality of these moves but it does not...


References: Bigalke, Ron J., Jr. "Cryptography." The Encyclopedia of Political Science. Ed. George Thomas Kurian. Vol. 1. Washington, DC: CQ Press, 2011. 364. Gale Virtual Reference Library. Web. 27 Mar. 2013.
Galilei, Galileo. Il Saggiatore. Rome: Galilei, 1623. Print.
Haugeland, John. Artificial Intelligence: The Very Idea. Cambridge, MA: MIT, 1985. Print.
A. Bhushan Kapoor, Pramod Pandya, Joseph S. Sherif, (2011) "Cryptography: A security pillar of privacy, integrity and authenticity of data communication", Kybernetes, Vol. 40 Iss: 9/10, pp.1422 – 1439
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