There is now a language shift from the previsouly so-called “Artifical Intelligence” to “Cognitive Computing” as attested by the news in Red Herring (an interview of Dharmendra Modha, chair of the Almaden Institute at IBM’s San Jose and IBM’s leader for cognitive computing).
Q: Why use the term “cognitive computing” rather than the better-known “artificial intelligence”?
A: The rough idea is to use the brain as a metaphor for the computer. The mind is a collection of cognitive processes—perception, language, memory, and eventually intelligence and consciousness. The mind arises from the brain. The brain is a machine—it’s biological hardware.
Cognitive computing is less about engineering the mind than it is the reverse engineering of the brain. We’d like to get close to the algorithm that the human brain [itself has]. If a program is not biologically feasible, it’s not consistent with the brain.
The emphasis is then less in the “artifical” but in the information treatment processes (cognitive) that should be re-designed through reverse engineering. What is also very intriguing is this:
Q: Can even the simplest artificial “mind” have practical applications?
A: That’s my goal, to take the simplest form and put it into a system so a customer can use it. We hope to appeal to what business can do with it.
OK, it’s IBM, it’s a company research lab, and even though there are still very high-level, there is this mention to “the customer can use it”, which is very curious in terms of what (of course I have ideas about it but it’s not explicated in this interview) and with regards to the “consuming process” (let’s consume this cognitive computing device).
Why do I blog this? it’s interesting to see language shift in the domain of technology, it’s always meaningful.