01 September 2011

Thought of the day: Can you teach a computer good taste?

I don't know much about artificial intelligence or learnabilty, but it's fun to think about what a computer might be able to learn. One characteristic that separates a novice from an expert is "good taste". (I first heard of this idea from a Paul Graham essay.) Supposedly, "good taste" is something that is not a characteristic that is easy to acquire quickly, unlike simple "knowledge." Then it would be a interesting challenge to see if a computer could learn good taste. If it's hard for humans, it would be probably be even harder for computers. Scientists already have enough trouble in machine vision research, getting computers to see things that humans find obvious.

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