[ExI] GPT-4 on its inability to solve the symbol grounding problem

Adrian Tymes atymes at gmail.com
Wed Apr 12 22:15:01 UTC 2023

On Wed, Apr 12, 2023 at 1:06 PM Jason Resch via extropy-chat <
extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:

> On Wed, Apr 12, 2023, 3:19 PM Adrian Tymes via extropy-chat <
> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>> On Wed, Apr 12, 2023 at 10:25 AM Jason Resch via extropy-chat <
>> extropy-chat at lists.extropy.org> wrote:
>>> What do you think would happen to a person whose visual cortex were
>>> replaced with a functionally equivalent silicon computer?
>> As someone who's worked on this concept, and seen results in patients
>> where this - more or less - was actually done:
>>> A) They wouldn't notice and there would be no change in their
>>> subjectivity or objectively observable behavior
>>> B) They would notice the change in their subjectivity (perhaps
>>> noticing a kind of blindness) but they would function the same as before
>>> and not say anything
>>> C) They would notice the change and they would complain about being
>>> blind but would still be able to function as if they can see
>>> D) They would notice and become functionally blind, not able to drive,
>>> walk without bumping into things, etc.
>>> E) Something else
>> B.  An attempt is made at "perfectly functionally equivalent" but that
>> ideal has not been achieved in practice.  There is enough of a difference
>> to notice.  That said, in all cases I've seen so far the difference has
>> been an improvement - not something worth complaining about.  (Granted, the
>> cases I've seen have been replacing a broken cortex or other such
>> component, giving sight to the formerly blind.  The "functional
>> equivalence" comes in for those who lost their sight, attempting to restore
>> what they had.  While there are degrees of blindness one could slide down
>> in theory - it is possible for some legally blind people to become more
>> blind - I have not seen this happen when this procedure is done.)  I
>> suppose that might be more in the spirit of C, since they might comment on
>> and compliment the difference, but by the literal wording of the choices B
>> is closest to the observed results.
>> Then again, in the cases I've seen, the difference was the point of the
>> replacement.  But the results observed suggest that perfect replacement
>> would not happen even for direct replacement.
> That's very interesting Adrian. Thanks for sharing your insights.
> What would you imagine would be the outcome if the replacement were
> "perfectly functionally equivalent" and performed in a normally sighted
> person?

B.  "Perfect" wouldn't be perfect in practice.  There'd be enough
difference to notice but it would not be significantly negative.
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