On the Circumference #2: Batman vs. Superman, how smart is AI?

On the Circumference #2: Batman vs. Superman, how smart is AI?

The On the Circumference posts contain short pieces which may or may not be expanded later.

New Doctor Who

We are often thrilled watching Doctor Who with the prospect of going anywhere in space and time.

Wouldn’t you think, after a thousand years or so, the Doctor would embrace the prospect of being something besides a white British male? 😉

Batman vs. Superman

Perhaps the biggest news to come out of San Diego Comic-Con was that the sequel to Man of Steel was going to be a Batman versus Superman movie.

When I said that to someone, the response I got was, “How does that work?”

The idea that many people have is that Superman is so powerful, and well, Batman is just a human being.

However, it works the same way that Captain Kirk can defeat so many super-powerful beings…you out-smart them, or at least, out-talk them.

As to how two “good guys” would be opposed to each other, that seems obvious to me in this case.

This Superman isn’t like the Superman in the comics (for more information on that, see my post, The Spoiler Zone: the real problem with Man of Steel). Based on the events in Man of Steel, I would be sure that there were people in the government who would like to get the Last Son of Krypton off of this planet, one way or another. SLIGHT SPOILER ALERT: the other Kryptonians in that movie are petulant, violent, driven by emotion…and super powerful. Not a good combination.

It’s very easy for me to see a secret decision being made to get rid of Superman, by any means necessary…can’t you just see the military and intelligence leaders gathered in a room discussing it?

General: “Look, this alien is a menace, plain and simple. He may look human, but he sure doesn’t act human.”

Science Advisor: “Actually, that might be the problem. He acts too human…like a three-year old child with a lack of impulse control.”

Admiral:  “Well, if what you are describing as a three-year old child throws a temper tantrum, we’re looking at a scene of mass devastation.”

Secretary: “Agreed. What do you propose do about the situation?”

General: “Take him out…now.”

Secretary: “And how exactly would you do that?”

Science Advisor: “We don’t yet know the limits of his powers, but I’m sure something could be developed.”

General: “I’ve got a few things we could try.”

Secretary: “I’m sure you do, but we can’t just shoot him out of the sky. As far as the  voting public is concerned, this ‘Superman’ saved the planet Earth when you couldn’t do it. His favorability ratings are higher than the President’s, higher than mine…and a lot higher than anybody else’s in this room. No, we need plausible deniability on this…I wonder if we can get the Russians…”

Admiral: “What about the Batman?”

General: “That crazy vigilante in Gotham City?”

Admiral: “He might be crazy, but he could be just the man to get this job done. The Police Commissioner out there, Gordon, is an old friend of mine. He’s told me some stories about the tech this guy uses, and if he isn’t a scientist, he has access to some that aren’t on our books. All we have to do is convince him to go after the alien, and let him figure it out.”

Secretary: “I like it. Besides, if he fails, we can always try something else…and if he dies, well, one less oddball to worry about…”

Genre glory at The Television Critics Association Awards

The Emmys may get the glory, but the TCAs just might be getting it right (at least as far as geeks are concerned).

The TCA winner for Individual Achievement in Drama went to Tatiana Maslany, star of Orphan Black. Note that this is one of two acting awards…the TCAs don’t segregate acting by gender, the other award is for comedy.

The Outstanding Achievement in Drama went to Game of Thrones, which is nominated for an Emmy…but we’ll see what the Academy does on September 22nd.

War of the worlds?

India has a very long history of achievement in the science of astronomy, and that’s part of what made the information reported in this

BBC News article

(and other places) so surprising.

Allegedly, the Indian military tracked what they suspected were Chinese drones over their territory for six months…before being informed that what they had been seeing were Mars and Venus…

AI takes an IQ test…and does as well as a 4-year old human

Artificial intelligence is increasing, and soon, the question will not be whether it is coming or not, but what we do with it now that it’s here.

In this

press release

it’s reported that ConceptNet 4, developed at MIT, was given a standard intelligence test…and performed as well as a four-year old child.

However, the areas of strength were inconsistent. As stated in the article

“‘If a child had scores that varied this much, it might be a symptom that something was wrong,’ said Robert Sloan, professor and head of computer science at UIC, and one of the study’s authors.”

Oh, yes, we geeks know that issue well. An artificial intelligence that might be (eventually) faster and better than humans at some things…but might lack “common sense”, or “morality”.

Sometimes, you don’t want to have been right… 😉

The Measured Circle is a defender of robot rights, and we aren’t suggesting that there is anything dangerous about ConceptNet 4…we congratulate the system on its good scores. 😉

My mini-take on…2 Guns

My  Significant Other picked 2 Guns to see this weekend.

It did quite well at the box office, but I’m not convinced that it is going to have a lot of staying power.

Simply put, we didn’t really like it.

Oh, we always like going to the movies, and we like Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlberg.

However, they didn’t have much chemistry, and the whole movie (despite being about some very visceral things) just wasn’t very involving.

It got splatted on Rotten Tomatoes, and was a solid C rating on MRQe…not good signs.

Oh, well…maybe next movie.

This post by Bufo Calvin originally appeared in the The Measured Circle


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