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20,000 processors power the singularity

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Peter Fotis Kapnistos: From millions of official sightings, around twenty thousand well-established reports of strange aerial phenomena still remain unidentified. What are they? Unexplained lights, triangles, discs, and cylinder shapes observed in the heavens are said to navigate with such deftness that one thing can be certain. At the very least they’re computers.

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Sigh!

Yet another example of brilliantly bungled up technology by Mr. Kapnistos, illustrating that he has no clue of what he speak. A display of lack of research that a 7th grader could do (and probably would for any given school paper). But I guess it is a choice of writing to the fringe with the deception that takes to make things sound fantastic. Lets have a look.

Peter Fotis Kapnistos: From millions of official sightings, around twenty thousand well-established reports of strange aerial phenomena still remain unidentified. What are they? Unexplained lights, triangles, discs, and cylinder shapes observed in the heavens are said to navigate with such deftness that one thing can be certain. At the very least they're computers.

How is that leap of faith justified?! Answer, it isn't. There have indeed been numerous sightings, some which are truly puzzling, but where most are either anecdotal or fall apart on closer inspection. However, never has a single sighting been proven as of Alien origin. Rather the opposite, more and more are proven to be either mundane Earth technology or atmospheric phenomena, some only recently discovered. So no, one can certainly not be certain - rather the opposite, in fact. Such statements merely illustrates a completely lack of understanding and knowledge of science.

Twenty thousand parallel processors are conceivably sufficient to set off the expected technological singularity or creation of smarter-than-human intelligence.

This clearly shows a complete lack of research skills and knowledge of the topic. To emulate or even create artificial intelligence, the metric of how many cores you use is completely irrelevant, it is raw processing power that is relevant as well as memory and connectivity. To use a metric as the number of processing cores is at best completely ignorant, but I suspect it goes deeper than this here, but more of that later.

Lets first define what is meant here. It is not the usual Artificial Intelligence (AI), I presume, which is also called weak AI. Many programs employ such algorithms and they can be run on a desktop computer. But they are focused on simple tasks such as large data set sorting, shape recognition and the like. Smarter-than-human intelligence implies Strong AI or Artificial General Intelligence (I'll short it to AGI here). Here is Wiki's page on it and from the first part:

Strong AI is artificial intelligence that matches or exceeds human intelligence — the intelligence of a machine that can successfully perform any intellectual task that a human being can.[1] It is a primary goal ofartificial intelligence research and an important topic for science fiction writers and futurists. Strong AI is also referred to as "artificial general intelligence"[2] or as the ability to perform "general intelligent action".[3] Science fiction associates strong AI with such human traits as consciousness, sentience, sapience and self-awareness.

Some references emphasize a distinction between strong AI and "applied AI"[4] (also called "narrow AI"[1] or "weak AI"[5]): the use of software to study or accomplish specific problem solving or reasoning tasks that do not encompass (or in some cases are completely outside of) the full range of human cognitive abilities.

Now we have that settled, lets look at what the estimated requirements are to processing power. Again, from the same link:

For low-level brain simulation, an extremely powerful computer would be required. The human brain has a huge number of synapses. Each of the 1011 (one hundred billion) neurons has on average 7,000 synaptic connections to other neurons. It has been estimated that the brain of a three-year-old child has about 1015 synapses (1 quadrillion). This number declines with age, stabilizing by adulthood. Estimates vary for an adult, ranging from 1014 to 5 x 1014 synapses (100 to 500 trillion).[33] An estimate of the brain's processing power, based on a simple switch model for neuron activity, is around 1014 (100 trillion) neuron updates per second.[34] Kurzweil looks at various estimates for the hardware required to equal the human brain and adopts a figure of 1016 computations per second (cps).[35] He uses this figure to predict the necessary hardware will be available sometime between 2015 and 2025, if the current exponential growth in computer power continues.

This is how the requirements are defined. You can have lower computing efficiency cores, but then using more of them or having very high computing efficiency cores and then using fewer. Either way, it is raw processing power that is the metric. However, even the above requirements are based on simplified assumptions (from the same Wiki link):

The artificial neuron model assumed by Kurzweil and used in many current artificial neural network implementations is simple compared with biological neurons. A brain simulation would likely have to capture the detailed cellular behaviour of biological neurons, presently only understood in the broadest of outlines. The overhead introduced by full modeling of the biological, chemical, and physical details of neural behaviour (especially on a molecular scale) would require a computer several orders of magnitude larger than Kurzweil's estimate. In addition the estimates do not account for Glial cells which are at least as numerous as neurons, may outnumber neurons by as much as 10:1, and are now known[citation needed] to play a role in cognitive processes.

And just to add to that is that we don't have a full understanding of intelligence, far from it in fact, what it really entails. So does those 20,000 processing cores make sense? Short answer: no - on so many levels that it is embarrassing. Beside the point stated above, lets look at what have been done so far.

In 2006 IBM's Blue Gene was used to do the following experiment (from the above Wiki link):

The Blue Brain project used one of the fastest supercomputer architectures in the world, IBM's Blue Gene platform, to create a real time simulation of a single rat neocortical column consisting of approximately 10,000 neurons and 108 synapses in 2006.[43] A longer term goal is to build a detailed, functional simulation of the physiological processes in the human brain: "It is not impossible to build a human brain and we can do it in 10 years," Henry Markram, director of the Blue Brain Project said in 2009 at the TED conference in Oxford.[44] There have also been controversial claims to have simulated a cat brain. Neuro-silicon interfaces have been proposed as an alternative implementation strategy that may scale better.[45]

Now, how big is Blue Gene?

In November 2004 a 16-rack system, with each rack holding 1,024 compute nodes, achieved first place in the TOP500 list, with a Linpack performance of 70.72 TFLOPS. It thereby overtook NEC's Earth Simulator, which had held the title of the fastest computer in the world since 2002. From 2004 through 2007 the Blue Gene/L installation at LLNL[4] gradually expanded to 104 racks, achieving 478 TFLOPS Linpack and 596 TFLOPS peak. The LLNL BlueGene/L installation held the first position in the TOP500 list for 3.5 years, until in June 2008 it was overtaken by IBM's Cell-based Roadrunner system at Los Alamos National Laboratory, which was the first system to surpass the 1 PetaFLOPS mark.

So in 2006 Blue Gene had somewhere close to 104 racks, each with 1,024 compute nodes (each dual core), meaning that in total there would be more than 200,000 processors working on this. But we can be generous and say 140,000 in 2006. That is still 7 times more than what is claimed here and yet no "singularity" or super artificial intelligence. Which is not surprising given the complexity of the task, which really only comes to light when the actual required raw processing power is considered. But lets look at where we are now. Here is a continuously updated list of the top 500 super computers in the world. Common for all of the top tier computers is that they have hundreds of thousands of processors. Yet no AGI.

Might we afterward recognize that our smarter-than-human computer codes came from - or somehow merged with - alien technology?

Maybe we should start looking for smart columnists first before engaging in such ignorant endeavors.

Here is an aspect of the technological singularity not commonly considered. Science fiction thrillers usually depict this event as a robotic revolution directed against mankind. But the opposite could also come about. Twenty thousand processors could overwhelm all communications systems of our world governments and unerringly enforce democracy.

Utter nonsense. 20,000 processors wouldn't do it (as seen above). But even if we had an Artificial General Intelligence it could do no such thing. The enabling factor is the information infrastructure and the curiosity of people and their urge to look up information. Having an AGI sitting there would by no means beat that. No wonder it wasn't considered - it is completely nonsensical.

This would certainly offend some politicians who don't want social equality to thrive. They merely exploit it as a ballot marketing catch.

Politicians, or rather, despots, would find ways to suppress information anyways if at all possible. Artificial intelligence would by no means be decisive in that respect.

But twenty thousand parallel processors of post-biological super intelligence could in due course take over the chairs of old-fashioned diplomats and politicians, thus efficiently eradicating an obsolete rank of scoundrels and spies.

Huh?! That makes no sense at all. As long as there are different nations you would always need spies (HUMINT). You can only do so much with technology.

In Psalms, "The Chariots of God are twenty thousand." Observed in the heavens, those primordial vehicles provided our ancestors with a first notion of smarter-than-human technology. Could twenty thousand processors power the coming singularity? Maybe it's not the switchover to electronic money that oligarchs really dread. Maybe it's digital democracy.

And now I think we hit the crux of the matter. It is the religious aspect that is central in this column by Mr. Kapnistos. The preceding technological analysis is merely a completely fabricated base to lend some credibility to the religious idea. Thus the origin of the 20,000 processors so an artificial link to the 20,000 chariots in a religious text can be made. Well, guess what, it doesn't lend any credibility to that ridiculous idea - rather the opposite. Merely displays how weak the idea actually is when such fabrications are required. Unfortunately, not the first time by Mr. Kapnistos. Rather, it seems to be the rule.

Cheers,

Badeskov

Edited for missing word.

Edited by badeskov

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Sigh!

Yet another example of brilliantly bungled up technology by Mr. Kapnistos, illustrating that he has no clue of what he speak. A display of lack of research that a 7th grader could do (and probably would for any given school paper). But I guess it is a choice of writing to the fringe with the deception that takes to make things sound fantastic. Lets have a look.

/.../

Maybe we should start looking for smart columnists first before engaging in such ignorant endeavors.

/.../

Cheers,

Badeskov

Hehehe! I love it! Each time I cant wait for your reply.

And yes, doing a bit of research FIRST would help him!

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Hehehe! I love it! Each time I cant wait for your reply.

And yes, doing a bit of research FIRST would help him!

Hahaha! Thanks, I appreciate it :P

Cheers,

Badeskov

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I had a major eyeroll the moment I read the title and instantly knew who wrote it!! :sleepy::lol: Great post Bade!! Spot on Sir!

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I had a major eyeroll the moment I read the title and instantly knew who wrote it!! :sleepy::lol: Great post Bade!! Spot on Sir!

Thanks Mental, I appreciate the kind words! Trust me, I knew exactly who it was as well when I saw the title.....

Cheers,

Badeskov

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