There is no Artificial General Intelligence

J. Landgrebe, B. Smith

The goal of creating Artificial General Intelligence (AGI) -- or in other words of creating Turing machines (modern computers) that can behave in a way that mimics human intelligence -- has occupied AI researchers ever since the idea of AI was first proposed. One common theme in these discussions is the thesis that the ability of a machine to conduct convincing dialogues with human beings can serve as at least a sufficient criterion of AGI. We argue that this very ability should be accepted also as a necessary condition of AGI, and we provide a description of the nature of human dialogue in particular and of human language in general against this background. We then argue that it is for mathematical reasons impossible to program a machine in such a way that it could master human dialogue behaviour in its full generality. This is (1) because there are no traditional explicitly designed mathematical models that could be used as a starting point for creating such programs; and (2) because even the sorts of automated models generated by using machine learning, which have been used successfully in areas such as machine translation, cannot be extended to cope with human dialogue. If this is so, then we can conclude that a Turing machine also cannot possess AGI, because it fails to fulfil a necessary condition thereof. At the same time, however, we acknowledge the potential of Turing machines to master dialogue behaviour in highly restricted contexts, where what is called ``narrow'' AI can still be of considerable utility.

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