A Robot Passed The Self-Awareness Test
Robots are getting even closer to taking over the world, or getting even closer to bagging our groceries and making life even easier for us. Either way, robots a getting increasingly more advanced as evidenced by the recent happenings in New York with robots having passed a self-awareness test.
Roboticists at the Ransselaer Polytechnic Institute in New York have built a trio of robots that were put through the classic ‘wise men puzzle’ test of self-awareness – and one of them passed.
In the puzzle, a fictional king is choosing a new advisor and gathers the three wisest people in the land. He promises the contest will be fair, then puts either a blue or white hat on each of their heads and tells them all that the first person to stand up and correctly deduce the colour of their own hat will become his new advisor.
Selmer Bringsjord set up a similar situation for the three robots – two were prevented from talking, then all three were asked which one was still able to speak. All attempt to say “I don’t know”, but only one succeeds – and when it hears its own voice, it understands that it was not silenced, saying “Sorry, I know now!” (Via TechRadar)
It may not sound like one the most complicated puzzles ever created, but when you’re a robot at the beginning of deducing complex and logical puzzles, this is a big step to take. I can guarantee that if you ask a few kids in an elementary school the wise men puzzle, they may or may not have the logical cognitive function to figure it out. You’ll have to pull them away from their iPad first.
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