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Gigaom AI Minute – March 17

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What the definition of intelligence is, is the topic of today's AI Minute.


We don't have an agreed upon definition of intelligence. Back in 2007 two researchers, Shane Legg and Marcus Hutter, set about to try to catalog the various definitions that were out there. They put 70 in their paper but acknowledge there are many many more than that.

The really interesting thing is that it isn’t that there are a few candidates that people are divided about which ones really are intelligence, nor is there a situation that there is a plurality consensus where 20% of people think this is a good definition or 40% or what have you. The truth is that nobody has a definition that could be thought of as kind of the mainstream one that's in the lead.

What does this mean? I think is means one of a couple of things. It either means that the word is meaningless, the concept is meaningless and the reason that nobody agrees on it is simply because there's nothing with which to agree upon. This is of course unsatisfying. The second one is that there's no consensus because we don't understand what it is. I think that this is probably closer to the truth.

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