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The Profoundly Weird, Gender-Specific Roots of the Turing Test 136

Posted by Soulskill
from the i'm-sorry-dave,-these-shoes-are-half-off dept.
malachiorion writes: Alan Turing never wrote about the Turing Test, that legendary measure of machine intelligence that researchers claimed to have passed last weekend. He proposed something much stranger — a contest between men and machines, to see who was better at pretending to be a woman. The details of the Imitation Game aren't secret, or even hard to find, and yet no one seems to reference it. This article explains why they should — in part because it's so odd, but also because it might be a better test for 'machines that think' than the chatbot-infested, seemingly useless Turing Test.
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The Profoundly Weird, Gender-Specific Roots of the Turing Test

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  • Re:Wow (Score:2, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Friday June 13, 2014 @02:25PM (#47231685)
    There's a lot more to it. Women use different colloquialisms than men do.

    I was at a conference a few months back where one of the keynote speakers was a MTF. If I closed my eyes, and just went on words I would have never have known they were MTF as they sounded completely male from the tones and phrases used - the colloquialisms of being male, and that's a hard thing to relearn.
  • Re:Wow (Score:4, Interesting)

    by Charliemopps (1157495) on Friday June 13, 2014 @02:36PM (#47231789)

    That would be a hard test. Most guys can not even pull it off. Lord knows I have seen a lot of guys online trying to pretend to be women who just can not even get the basics down.

    I disagree. I used to be pretty heavy into MMOs prior to WOW ruining everything. I was one of the few that didn't have a problem having a female character... and I got hit on CONSTANTLY. Seriously, my female characters would randomly receive gifts via mail or in person and I wasn't even remotely trying to pretend I was female. MMO dudes are just that desperate, they dont care to check if you're really female or, even if you are, if you're actually attractive in real life. And we're not talking about healing potions... we're talking stuff that cost hundreds of real world dollars. It was so funny it became a running joke in my guild who started passing around pictures of both models and ugly women to entice, shame or even enrage my "suitors" I'd even put 'NOT A CHIC' in my profile but to no avail. It really opened my eyes to just how desperate some people are.

    Nowadays it doesn't seem as bad. I think there are either more women into MMOs...

  • by Immerman (2627577) on Friday June 13, 2014 @02:43PM (#47231863)

    Try it the other way around - men and women's minds start from essentially the same foundation, but then diverge thanks to profoundly different optimal reproductive strategies (with all the contingent physical and hormonal differences evolution has thus adopted), cultural indoctrination, and no doubt myriad other minor factors. Certainly the standard deviation is greater than the population difference on many fronts, maybe most, but the distinction is undeniable to anyone closely and honestly involved with numerous members of both genders. Grab any two random individuals of opposite genders and you will almost certainly find certain characteristic differences between them.

  • by Lost Race (681080) on Friday June 13, 2014 @08:12PM (#47233995)

    Turing's imitation game was a thought experiment. To explain it simply to an audience unfamiliar with the idea, he started with man against woman, then proceded to man against machine. The specific genders were not important or significant in the thought experiment, just the existence of some difference between the contestants that could potentially be spoofed over a teletype. There was nothing gender-specific or weird about it.

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