Articles Artificial Intelligence Is Almost Here China CRV s Dirty Little Secret

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1 Vol. 25 No. 1 SY ISSN FRESHMAN Articles Artificial Intelligence Is Almost Here China CRV s Dirty Little Secret Activities Artificial Intelligence CRVs e - P a g e s

2 Artificial Intelligence Is Almost Here By Dexter Osorio In the movie, The Matrix, an apocalyptic view of the world is presented where computers with artificial intelligence (AI) have managed to enslave humans in a virtual world. Sounds like mere science fiction? Well, think again, because 2005 is the year when an artificial brain called Cyc (pronounced like psych) will be let loose on the Internet for everyone to use and interact with. Cyc is the creation of Doug Lenat of United States-based tech firm Cycorp. Lenat has been working for the last 22 years to create the world s first functioning AI. Program With Common Sense Opening Cyc to the Internet will give it access to a vast of data as it bounces around different webpages and talks to anyone who wants to contribute to its database. So, what if it amasses all the data in the world? It s still just a program, isn t it? The answer is both yes and no. Yes, Cyc is still a man-made program. And no, it isn t just any program, because Cyc has been designed with something that no other program has common sense. Since 1984, Lenat, a former Stanford professor, has painstakingly taught Cyc the basic facts that humans know about the world. Things such as rain falls downward, a person can only have one mother, and people who are dead no longer breathe, and other things we take for granted What Is AI? Computer scientist John McCarthy was the first to use the term artificial intelligence in Artificial intelligence, or AI, is defined as the science and engineering of making intelligent machines, especially intelligent computer programs. AI is generally associated with computer science, but it has many important links with other fields such as mathematics, psychology, cognition, biology, and philosophy, among many others. Aibo, Sony entertainment robot: skillful, entertaining, intelligent companion have been coded and inputted into Cyc s database. Lenat believes that, given enough of these basic commonsense facts, plus the power to make inferences and deductions 2

3 Branches of A.I. Among the many branches of artificial intelligence are: Neural Networks: simulates intelligence by reproducing the types of physical connections that occur in animal brains. Natural Language Processing: programming computers to understand natural human languages. Robotics: the development of robots that can see, hear, and react to other sensory stimuli. Game Playing: programming computers to play games (enemies in video games that react realistically, etc.) Expert systems: programming computers to make decisions in real-life situations, such as those used in autopilot systems. based on these facts, Cyc will eventually be able to talk meaningfully with people, reason about the world, and even learn on its own. Growing Common Sense Cyc currently has upwards of three million of these basic facts inputted into its database. And when Cyc goes online this year, expect that number to double, then quadruple... and so on. And the more Cyc knows, the faster it can learn as it begins to make logical connections by itself. The goal is for any person to be able to ask Cyc questions and get meaningful answers. (See Turing Test on sidebar). When Cyc first goes online this year, it won t be able to answer all of the questions asked of it, because its common sense is not yet fully developed. But with more and The Turing Test more online users The Turing Test is the simplest and most convincing way to determine if a machine already has artificial intelligence (AI). Proposed by mathematician Alan Turing in 1950, the test calls for a judge to have a remote conversation with a human and a machine, both located in a separate room. The conversation can be about anything. If the judge cannot tell the machine from the human based on the conversation, then the machine is likely to be intelligent. Asimo, Honda s humanoid robot. ASIMO s abilities to walk smoothly, climb stairs, and recognize people s voices and faces will enable the robot to easily function in our world and truly assist humans. asking questions and adding to Cyc s database, Lenat expects that within the next three to five years, Cyc will be able to answer most questions. SOURCES: Formal Reasoning Group, Stanford University. What is Artificial Intelligence? www-formal.stanford.edu The Next Big Thing: Artificial Intelligence. Can Artificial Intelligence Really Match Human Brain Power? Artificial Intelligence. Whatever Happened to Machines That Think? The Know-It-All Machine: An Audacious Quest to Teach A Computer Common Sense -- One Fact At A Time. 3

4 China CRV s Dirty Little Secret By Dexter Osorio If the Philippines has its jeepney, then China has its CRV. No, that doesn t mean the Honda CRVs that we often see on the streets. CRV, in this case, stands for Chinese rural vehicles. CRVs are locally made three-wheeled (although there are also models that have two or four wheels) vehicles that are often seen hauling goods in rural areas. Also known as mules, the CRVs are the workhorse of farmers, providing cheap transportation at a fraction of the cost of imported, commercially assembled vehicles. The mule, or CRV, provides cheap Not Environment-Friendly transportation. But it seems that the CRVs have a dirty secret. According to a new study by Daniel Sperling at the Institute of Transportation Studies at University of California-Davis in the United States, CRVs pose a grave threat to the environment because of the amount of fuel they consume and the dirty emissions that they produce. And there are so many of them that they are driving up China s demand for oil. The problem becomes obvious when you consider the sheer volume of CRVs plying roads in China. According to Sperling s research, there are 22 million CRVs in China, and the number is growing. While commercial car manufacturing in China has already reached the million mark in 2002, the country is now making three CRVs for every car it produces. Twenty-two million CRVs understandably guzzle a lot of diesel 25 percent of China s total consumption, to be exact. And 22 million CRVs also account for as much pollution as all other Chinese commercial vehicles combined. China s huge fleet of CRVs accounts for a significant amount of the country s total greenhouse emissions. 4

5 Do It Yourself CRVs are the result of China s failed attempt to industrialize in the 1960s. Faced with surplus machinery and a need to replace the mule as rural workhorses, the CRV was born. CRVs are so simple in construction that most farmers can assemble it by themselves. Half of these vehicles are indeed do-ityourself projects. Other CRVs are assembled commercially by three major companies. They can cost as little as $300 to build. But since they are mostly CRVs are a regular part in China s everyday traffic. self-assembled, CRVs are not under the same strict rules as commercial cars, particularly when it comes to emission control. They can be so polluting. The Chinese government estimates that they emit double the emissions of trucks, so they are banned from major cities. Rural Threat While the spike in Chinese demand for oil is often blamed on the rise of commercial car ownership in the cities (more private cars being bought by the newly rich), Sperling s research says that we also need to look at the effects of CRVs in the countryside. All we hear about is the proliferation of cars in cities, Sperling told New Scientist magazine in an interview. Everyone forgets about the other 800 million people in rural areas. It s a bit of a dilemma, Mark Radka, head of energy at the UN Environment Programme in Paris, told New Scientist. It s appropriate technology, and that s good for China. But the CRVs poor efficiency is a problem. Although the CRV presents a real problem to the Chinese government and the environment in general, all hope is not lost. According to Sperling s study, even simple improvements to the CRV s engine design can improve its fuel efficiency by as much as 50 percent. And considering that there are 22 million CRVs on rural roads, this will translate to a huge improvement in China s pollution levels and energy situation. It could go one of two ways, Sperling told New Scientist. Either the government could force the industry to make their vehicles more efficient, or they could discourage CRVs and concentrate on conventional vehicles. SOURCES: The Filthy Truth about Diesel Mules. Chinese Rural Vehicles: An Exploratory Analysis of Technology, Economics, Industrial Organization, Energy Use, Emissions, and Policy. Kicking the Mule. 5

6 A C T I V I T Y Artificial Intelligence ACROSS 3 A trait that the artificial brain Cyc possesses that no other computer program has (two words) 6 The science and engineering of making intelligent machines, especially intelligent computer programs (two words) 9 The development of robots that can see, hear, and react to other sensory stimuli 10 Programming computers to make decisions in real-life situations, such as those used in autopilot systems (two words) DOWN 1 A branch of artificial intelligence that simulates intelligence by reproducing the types of physical connections that occur in animal brains 2 The first computer scientist to use the term artificial intelligence in 1956 (full name) 4 The mathematician who proposed a test for machine intelligence (1950) that calls for a judge to have a remote conversation with a human and a machine (full name) 5 The process of deriving a conclusion by reasoning; specifically, inference in which the conclusion about facts follows necessarily from general or universal statements 7 Test, the simplest and most convincing way to determine if a machine already has artificial intelligence 8 Former Standford Professor and creator of the artificial brain called Cyc 6

7 A C T I V I T Y CRVs WORD SEARCH: Find the words listed on the bottom of the box. Answers may be horizontal, vertical, diagonal, or reversed. E S U O H N E E R G I O R P I V E P Z E E G R O V E L U M I I L T T I R O R Y A U E L R E E N N D L C E R E A A A C O O N I N U I U I N N H J L T N E M N O R I V N E N S G O S R D T H C O E C L L U I E S S C N L P V R I P O L L U T I O N P T U T N R U D R J G E L U U I L Y N N H E Y Y U I H Y I I M I I E O U N China CRV diesel environment greenhouse industrialize jeepney mule pollution rural Sperling technology 7

8 Answer to activities Artificial Intelligence CRVs 8

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