RE: Tomorrow is a new day

From: Ben Goertzel (
Date: Fri Nov 05 2004 - 17:10:57 MST

Hi David,

I'm certainly not harshly opposed to critics of my work, in general; I have
a lot of respect for many individuals (such as Peter Voss, Eliezer Yudkowsky
and Pei Wang, to name a few) who have criticized my work. Pei and I are
good friends, and Peter and I (though we haven't spent as much time
together, although I had the pleasure of staying at his AI Commune for a
couple nights this week) are friends as well, in spite of our mutual
criticism of each others' AI work.

Marc Geddes often raises interesting conceptual issues, though like others I
often get frustrated at the vaguely-phrased formulations that he proposes as
solutions to these issues. If you scan the SL4 archives you'll find that
I've argued with Marc plenty of times!

I'm sorry I offended you by responding to your criticisms of my work (which
I still think are ill-founded) too harshly; probably I was in a bad mood
that day! As of now I'm still saddled with a human emotional system.

I'll say this though. With the critics I respect most, I can argue through
the difficult issues relating to AGI with mutual understanding, until a
point is reached where we come to a question of intuition, that can't be
decided via available data, and that none of us know how to resolve via
deductive inference. Then we both agree to disagree based on our differing

As for Cyc, my criticisms of Cyc are actually much LESS harsh than those
made by many others on this list (e.g. Eliezer), and many others in the AI
community. An awful lot of AI folks think Cyc is totally off-target and
useless. I think it's ill-founded in some ways ,but may be transformable
into something useful, and I'm (slowly, as a background task) carrying out
some concrete research in this direction. I've actually loaded some of Cyc
into my AI system and worked with it, which is more than most critics of Cyc
can say.

-- Ben G

> -----Original Message-----
> From: []On Behalf Of David
> Clark
> Sent: Friday, November 05, 2004 4:06 PM
> To:
> Subject: Re: Tomorrow is a new day
> It's funny how you (Ben) can so easily say that "the Cyc AI design is
> incapable of achieving a high level of general intelligence" and you
> responded so negatively to my criticism of your own design. You seem to
> have all kinds of patience for Marc Geddes who refers himself to Einstein
> but not much for critics of your work.
> -- David Clark
> ----- Original Message -----
> From: "Ben Goertzel" <>
> To: <>
> Sent: Friday, November 05, 2004 10:17 AM
> Subject: RE: Tomorrow is a new day
> >
> > Hi Stephen,
> >
> > Indeed, Cycorp has done an excellent job of bringing in
> government funding
> > ;-)
> >
> > Unfortunately though, as I've expressed before, I'm pretty sure the Cyc
> AI
> > design is incapable of achieving a high level of general intelligence...
> >
> > How are things with Cognitive Cyc?
> >
> > ben
> >

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