From: Richard Loosemore (firstname.lastname@example.org)
Date: Tue Jan 17 2006 - 08:14:29 MST
> After reading the conversation on sl4 and other forums, I contacted the two
> chairman of the PIBOT company (Rick Geniale Enterprises) who were listed as
> participants at the 2005 Accelerating Change conference at Stanford, and
> requested a private presentation of PIBOT for my group. The response was
> professional in nature, in sharp contrast to the website, and they were willing
> to schedule a demonstration in early June, and suggested that an Italian
> translator would be handy.
> I was wondering if any members of this list were at the 2005 Acc. Change
> conference and may have had the opportunity to meet or hear from Messrs.
> Bertini and Melonaro about PIBOT. I'm highly skeptical, but if there in fact
> is an Italian team willing to set up private demonstrations later this year,
> followed by public conferences in Toulouse, Oslo, and Tokyo, then I'm willing to
> keep an open mind and invite them to explain themselves in a clearer manner than
> one finds on their website.
What about we set up a conference call with them and ask some technical
questions? Should be possible to ask questions of a general nature that
do not compromise their IP, but which at the same time reveal whether or
not they actually understand the field well enough to do what they claim
to have done.
Your cautious response prompted me to go back to their website for a
second look. I'm sorry: to anyone with any appreciation for the
complexity of intelligent systems, the claims made there are just plain
silly. "Ontological representations"? "N-level ontological
meta-architecture"? Oh dear.
Let me try to translate it to another domain. It would be as if someone
popped up and claimed to have a computer that could (a) run a
corporation of any size, without needing more than a few minutes to
familiarize itself with operating procedures, (b) babysit a one-day old
child while the parents take a two-week vacation and, hey, don't worry
about that baby for even a moment, folks, (c) argue every legal case in
America simultaneously and guarantee to win every single one of them or
it will pay all the awards that would have been won had every one
succeeded, (d) it will contract to supply any guy, no matter how ugly
and stupid, with a lifetime commitment from the hungriest, most gorgeous
she-vixen on the planet, guaranteed or a thousand times his money back,
(e) it will be able to start a war with any country in the world and win
it in three weeks with no casualties and no loss of materiel, with the
conquered populace cheering and singing in the streets forever after the
People who make promises like that often do seem very professional on
the phone. But when you start asking them questions of a technical
nature, the word output rate starts to go up, and they become strangely
reluctant to give up their conversational turn, lest maybe you ask
questions about the answer. Analyse the stream of words afterwards and
you will find it remarkably content-free.
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