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How smart will computers get?

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By The Staff

In recent years the ability of computers has grown dramatically.  Many are predicting that machines (computers) will soon be smarter than people.  How realistic is this?

If it is a realistic possibility how soon might it happen?

Smart is a poorly defined term in this context, so let’s start with some clarification.  For humans the concept of IQ (Intelligence Quotient) is well established and numerous kinds of IQ tests have been devised and used.  

An IQ test measures 4 or 5 of the cognitive abilities we humans possess and results in a numerical value that compares us to the average of the rest of humanity.  An IQ of 100 means we are exactly as smart as the world average.

Except of course it’s not quite as simple as that since test groups, test structure and testing methodology can possibly skew the results.  Rather get lost in a discussion of this topic let’s skip to the related question.

How smart are computers?  How fast are they getting smarter?  AND how do we measure computer intelligence?

First of all, we still don’t really even know what we mean by computer intelligence!  Rather we talk about computer performance.  For that there are several well-defined metrics.  Well defined, but perhaps not very meaningful in the present context.


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