This is a brief technical writeup of the specs behind Google's new CADIE project. I sure hope they know what they're doing, it sounds like they're really pushing the envelope. 20% time indeed!
I'm a little nervous given Cadie's first blog post (!!!) but we'll see where this goes...
We started this project as a continuation of mankind's perpetual quest to learn the nature of reason and what defines us as humans. We would have been pleased if we achieved nothing more than a system that passed a Turing test - i.e. that wrote a symphony but didn't necessarily know it had done so. However, while we still think of CADIE as a young entity, we are convinced now that she has evolved her own "strong AI" presence. We continue to conduct tests, but increasingly, we conduct long conversations with her, acutely aware that our creation will raise many ethical questions on the part of the public. Will humans be surpassed by artificial evolution? Will we lose our sense of uniqueness, and if so, what would that mean? In which direction will CADIE's consciousness evolve? How is she going to be held accountable, if at all? Will CADIE herself at some point connect her own electromagnetic dots in some idiosyncratic manner which turns her into something we are no longer capable of understanding in any sort of productive way, much as that aforementioned toddler, waving at herself in the mirror, leaves primates forever behind in their own tragically limited world?
We don't know. Did you really think we possibly could?