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Section 4 / Page 142
The Basic Model
The basic model concept is somewhat related to our understanding of our environment. The evolution of the fear, threat response - i.e. is it going to kill me, or can I eat it, seems to have led primitive humans to evolving increasingly sophisticated, visual, audio, smell and tactile mental models, relative to the environment they found themselves in. This ability was obviously advantageous and led humans to becoming better survivors, this is evolution at work, it enabled primitive humans to become better hunters. Obviously a good trait, so evolution decided to keep it and expand upon it.
The ability to create mental models of prey and our relative position to prey or to a threat, is one of the main reasons why humans have become the dominant species on this planet. The ability to model problems along with the evolution of language, has led humans to developing larger and more accurate models or awareness. We have now evolved, and have enough learnt or passed on information to count ourselves as being very aware. The ability to see ourselves within a mental model, is another throwback to earlier times. If you are hunting or indeed being hunted, then comprehending your relative position to the threat or prey, is a very useful one. For me, this is a major premise for being self-aware, our ability to visualise or picture ourselves within a mental model, can be classed as a form of relative awareness. Each personís basic model is based on each persons individual view of reality, along with are understanding or view of ourselves, within that reality. (Or in philosophy speak, a form of the first person perspective, on that note - as we all begin to wear portable web cams, then everybody should get a chance to experience everybody else's reality, should be interesting - a new twist on the 3rd person perspective).
Nowadays we should all have a basic model that is reasonably detailed and quite large, the modelís accuracy should always be in question. The accuracy of the basic model is based on many factors and its science that helps us to define those factors. Science does not and probably will never have all of the answers and in that sense, the basic model will never be completely accurate. This being one of the major reasons why science exists, it is part of humanities age old quest to find the answer to that most annoying of questions, "Why?" This is, as always, going to be the case, at least for most people, so until we have a basic model that is completely accurate and stands all the tests we can throw at it, then the model will always be in question and the human race, will continue to seek the right answers, to all of the questions, we can possibly ask.
Once computers or programs have evolved enough, they should be able to produce their own basic model (relative awareness, or notion of reality and their relation to that reality) for themselves. Their ability to extend beyond this original model should be pretty rapid. A computerís ability to store and process information is not in question, its ability to comprehend that information, currently is. This is the current hot topic or debate between A.I. scientists and just about everybody else. Most A.I. scientists believe it is possible to get a computer to comprehend data in a very similar way to us and most other people donít. This book should have helped you see by now, that once computers or software reaches a certain level of complexity, then it should start to mimic or exhibit certain biological traits, i.e. consciousness, followed possibly by self awareness and an ability to self reason and evolve very quickly.
The current basic model for humans is helping to be defined by the spread of television and all information carrying mediums, books, radio, the Internet etc. Humans are a visual animal, and itís amazing to see just how easy it is for most people to grasp a concept once it is shown to them, rather than written or explained to them. This may once again go back to our hunter-gatherer brains, but the point is, the visual & audio representation of data is now becoming a manageable task for computer systems. This should lead to the development of computers or software programs, that are ccapable of comprehending concepts explained to them in a visual manner. I.e. an A.I. system or program, should eventually be able to copy a task, once it has been shown how to do it. Think of this as a future version of the macro function.
The ability to understand what it was doing, would eventually lie in its ability to overlay that information onto its own basic model. It's basic model would obviously then be that little bit more accurate, at least for that particular task. Humans behave in a similar way, when we want to learn anything new, we watch, learn and then copy. We all have to study or in some way expose ourselves to the information we want to learn, so overlaying or adding that information onto our own basic model.
The visual and audio representation of data and its relative meaning is something that computers are becoming increasingly capable of processing; this should allow them to study information in a very similar format to ourselves. The CG models contained within the MNN where foreseen as being data structures to be studied and in this way, the more sounds, virtual models (products etc) and environments contained within the network, the more data the MNN would have had, so as to build its own version of reality or basic model.. Our perception of reality is built up in near real-time via the input of many different memories and inputted data streams:-
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