Conscious AI

12 May 2021  ·  Hadi Esmaeilzadeh, Reza Vaezi ·

Recent advances in artificial intelligence (AI) have achieved human-scale speed and accuracy for classification tasks. In turn, these capabilities have made AI a viable replacement for many human activities that at their core involve classification, such as basic mechanical and analytical tasks in low-level service jobs. Current systems do not need to be conscious to recognize patterns and classify them. However, for AI to progress to more complicated tasks requiring intuition and empathy, it must develop capabilities such as metathinking, creativity, and empathy akin to human self-awareness or consciousness. We contend that such a paradigm shift is possible only through a fundamental shift in the state of artificial intelligence toward consciousness, a shift similar to what took place for humans through the process of natural selection and evolution. As such, this paper aims to theoretically explore the requirements for the emergence of consciousness in AI. It also provides a principled understanding of how conscious AI can be detected and how it might be manifested in contrast to the dominant paradigm that seeks to ultimately create machines that are linguistically indistinguishable from humans.

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