Erasing the line between man and machine

To erase the line between man and machine is to obscure the line between men and gods.

The trouble with the question ‘Is it possible for a machine to think?’ is not really that we don’t yet know a machine which could do the job. The question is not analogous to that which someone might have asked a hundred years ago: ‘Can a machine liquefy a gas?’ The trouble is rather the sentence, ‘A machine thinks (perceives, wishes)’ seems somehow nonsensical. It is as though we had asked ‘Has the number 3 a colour?’ (What colour could it be, as it obviously has none of the colours known to us?)

– Ludwig Wittgenstein, Blue Books (1933-1934)

Reviews

  • A review by Manohla Dargis in The New York Times
  • A review by Anthony Lane in The New Yorker
Advertisements

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s