The Turing Test – Artificial Intelligence

The idea of Artificial Intelligence can be
traced back to the work that Alan Turing carried out in the second world war. Alan Turing, who is widely regarded as having
a highly significant role in pioneering the development of computer science and artificial
intelligence (AI). During the Second World War, Turing and colleagues created an automated machine for breaking secret codes known as the Bombe. This machine could find the solution to code-breaking problems in minutes – tasks that would have
taken humans weeks to complete. The Bombe could effectively do something that no human could. The Bombe was a moment when it became possible to speculate on the limits
of what machines could do. Turing’s work on the Bombe influenced his
thinking on the possibilities that computing may have for the future. In 1947, during a public lecture, Turing gave what is thought to be the first mention of computer intelligence, saying… ‘what we want
is a machine that can learn from experience’. In 1950 Turing wrote a paper entitled ‘Computing Machinery and Intelligence’ where he began
by posing the question ‘Can machines think?’ It is from this paper that the Turing Test
derives. Turing begins by speculating that the question, ‘Can machines think?’, But in the end, goes on to say that’s a very difficult question to answer because it is very tricky to define thinking or even how to measure thinking. So instead of attempting to answer the question ‘can a machine think’ he chose to replace this question with something he called the Imitation Game where it was asked if a machine could convincingly imitate a human. This game eventually evolved into what we now think of as the Turing Test. Get more from The Open University Check out the links on screen now.