27 April 2017

A.I.: What's next ? Biological intelligence (B.I.)

Biological intelligence concerns all the control and adaptive systems that are not artefacts, but rather that are exploited by Nature in living entities after millions of years of evolution.

Normally when we think about Biological Intelligence we refer to human brains and nervous system functions, but there is much more in Nature. Think about the collective intelligence in colony species like ants, bees capable of adapting and co-evolving as ecosystems in changing environment. These colonies - as our organs! - are complex adaptive systems, open as exchanging matter, energy and information with the external environment. This Biological Intelligence is self-organizing. 

Biological Intelligence is, obviously, much beyond our most advanced thinking of Artificial Intelligence (A.I.), today. A.I., in most cases, is still based on heuristics and algorithms (e.g., ML, DL, neural networks, etc), using binary logic but, above all, it is reductionist. Biological Intelligence leverages on the deeper quantum phenomena which are at the most basic level of life: binary logic is very different from the tangled interactions in quantum mechanics.

In A.I. avenues we are making outstanding progresses and we have great visions how to make a biz out of that! For example, two amazing projects have been announced last week aiming at progressing A.I.: Facebook’s plan to develop a non-invasive brain-computer interface that will let you type at 100 words per minute and Elon Musks’ proposal that we become superhuman cyborgs to deal with superintelligent AI. 

Also, a few days ago Apple suggested at a TED 2017 conference that "instead of replacing humans with robots, artificial intelligence should be used to give us super-human abilities”. 

No doubts that high bandwidth/low latency connectivity + massive A.I. (Cloud/Edge/Fog) + B.C.I (or similar advanced interfaces for humans) are likely to bring us to the next big Internet, which far reaching socio-economic implications...but beyond that there is a much more challenging and impactful frontier, for us, which is understanding Biological Intelligence and as such life. 

In fact, this implies looking at more subtle biological processes and interactions paradigms, maybe less familiar in Computer Science but surely nearer Quantum Biology.

Capturing the essence of Biological intelligence is the biggest bet we can make !