I finished reading the emotion machine at last today. I wrote a review of it on goodreads. You may kindly peruse the review here.
I started reading this book in early 2008. Then unprecedented events of life compelled me to pay attention to other things that I was told were more important. Although I believed even then that reading this book was more important. I started reading this book again a few days back and I finished it today. I was curious and wanted to peek into the mind of one of the most prolific thinkers who made it well into the 21st century. My primary stimulus was that I am a student of artificial intelligence (AI). The way we do AI mostly around the world these days is to pick a practical problem and devise a solution for it. Even though the solution is quite smart, looked at from a panoramic point of view, it is only a miniature version of what true AI can be. Mostly we reflect on such AI from the lenses of the AI philosophers. Winning the Turing test can be a goal for a more seasoned professional. However, what should true AI be? How should it behave and grow? and how it should act and react? These are the questions that are defied due to concerns of practicality.
Professor Minsky did a great job in writing this book. It begins with contemplations of how human intelligence evolves from infancy to adulthood. By the way, there are aspects of human intelligence in this book that I am sure that not many people might have thought of before. To this end, it is a great self help book too. I mean you could literally learn loads of ideas as to how to use your own mind more efficiently, intelligently and ethically. If you have children, this book can help your raise them well. This book could literally help you raise a genius.
But even apart from that, this book also has practical ideas as to how to make smart machines. I think this one of those books that will become a standard textbook on any course about engineering true AI.
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