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Humanist Archives: Aug. 30, 2022, 7:27 a.m. Humanist 36.145 - artificial intelligence and science fiction

              Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 36, No. 145.
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        Date: 2022-08-29 08:14:08+00:00
        From: maurizio lana <>
        Subject: Re: [Humanist] 36.144: artificial intelligence and science fiction

Hi Willard,

thinking of the conclusion of this message by Henry ("I was contrasting
GPT-3 <> with the science fiction I,
Robot series, and had the uneasy feeling that it's getting harder to
predict the results of a Turing test"), which is connected with the
conclusion of the SciAm article ("“First authorship is still the one of
the most coveted items in academia, and that is unlikely to perish
because of a nonhuman first author. It all comes down to how we will
value AI in the future: as a partner or as a tool")

i would point also to this article:

Aalho, Jukka. 2021. «I Wrote a Book with GPT-3 AI in 24 Hours — And Got
It Published». /Medium/, 10 dicembre 2021.

which describes what is somehow a step forward in respect to the
Springer book

Beta Writer. 2019. /Lithium-Ion Batteries. A Machine-Generated Summary
of Current Research/. New York, NY: Springer.


Il 29/08/22 09:41, Henry Schaffer <> ha scritto:
>> I am continuing to look for comprehensive and insightful studies of the
>> relationship between artificial intelligence and science fiction. This
>> relationship has been noted for decades, both for the contrast of scifi
>> with 'real science' and for the indebtedness of the latter to the former.
>> Despite that, Sarah Dillon and Jennifer Schaffer-Goddard write in "What
>> AI researchers read: the role of literature in artificial intelligence
>> research"*, empirical studies have been lacking. To address this, they
>> offer "a pilot interview study investigating the leisure reading habits of
>> 20 practising AI researchers based in the United Kingdom."
>> In Common Sense, the Turing Test, and the Quest for Real AI (MIT Press,
>> 2017) Canadian computer scientist Hector Levesque defines AI as “the
>> study of how to make computers behave the way they do in the
>> movies”--tongue in cheek? He seems quite serious to me.
>    I'm not going to give an empirical study - or maybe it is one
> or perhaps an experiment in an empirical study?
>    As I read that, I was contrasting
GPT-3<>  with the science fiction I, Robot
> series, and had the uneasy feeling that it's getting harder to predict the
results of a Turing test.
>> For movies one thinks of The Matrix, Ex Machina and many others; I'd
>> insist on including Charlie Brooker's television series Black Mirror,
>> especially "Hated in the Nation" (2016) and "Be Right Back" (2013).
>> These raise the question beyond the biographical one rigorously pursued
>> by Dillon and Schaffer-Goddard to suggest further the perpetual futurity
>> of AI, which some would see as in conflict with, some generative of the
>> permanent achievements of the natural sciences.
>> Any suggestions or comments?
>    The linked short article above didn't deal directly with your question,
> but I think it's relevant.


a questo punto devo fare una confessione:
come il mio amico Erri De Luca, sono un europeista estremista.
Questo significa che, per  me, l’Europa unita è l’unica utopia politica
ragionevole che noi europei abbiamo coniato.
xavier cercas, inaugurazione del salone del libro, torino 2018

Maurizio Lana
Università del Piemonte Orientale
Dipartimento di Studi Umanistici
Piazza Roma 36 - 13100 Vercelli

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