Monday, September 03, 2018

Toastmaster P8 speech : Are we machines ?

Opening :

Do we believe we are human beings? Yes we do. Because we are able to identify and differentiate between different faces, voice tones and expressions. And most importantly we are have feelings and we are self aware. Let us see what a machine is capable of ?

Body :
We can see 2 numbers here. If you put these numbers in a machine - say a calculator or a computer, it will be able to identify the first number as 6 and the 2nd number as 9. For a machine these numbers are different and so, if you ask the machine whether 6 is equal to 9, it will give a false answer.

Did you notice something here ? Yes, the fonts of both numbers are different. But, irrespective of the font, a machine will be able to differentiate between the 2 numbers.

What do we have here? The left image is? And the right image is?

What will happen when i put these two images in a computer? Will it be able to idenfity the left image as a woman and the right image as a man? Probably No. That is because the computer does not have the inbuilt logic to differentiate between these faces. How do we as human beings identify the faces as different? Shape of the nose. Eyebrows. Lips. Forehead. Hair style. What if the machine can be taught to differentiate between these two images using these data points.

Lets take a step back. Have you heard of machine learning ? For those who do not know, machine learning is a concept where we provide sample data to train a machine. Once the machine is trained, it identifies data points to differentiate between input data.

This shows a segregation of gender based on height and weight.

So, if we train a machine by providing a large number of faces both of men and women, it will eventually have data points which we unconsciously process. And later if we feed it a face, it should be able to tell us whether it is the face of a man or a woman.

The question here is how does the human brain differentiate between the faces ?

Human brain is built up of neurons or brain cells. Each neuron is connected to upto 10,000 other neurons via synapses. When we are born, do we not know the difference between the face of man or woman? No. But, we come across these faces and we are told repeatedly which is the face of a man and which is the face of a woman. The neurons and synapses store these data points training our brain to differentiate between man and woman faces.

But, then you would ask, what about emotions and feelings? Are these also trained into our brain? Do you know how powerful our brain is ? As per some article on the internet, it would take approximately 83000 super computers to work for 40 minutes to simulate what human brain can simulate in 1 second. And imagine that if I am 30 years old, my brain has been training, learning and accumulating data points for 30 years.

Conclusion :

Does it mean that with a lot of processing power and a lot of training, computers should be able to simulate feelings and emotions like human beings. As per some articles on the internet, by 2045, the intelligence of computer will exceed the intelligence of a human being. Then maybe machines will have feelings and emotions. Are we still sure that we are not advanced  machines ?

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