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Artificial Intelligence Pioneer Says We Need to Start Over


Hinton harbors doubts about the current workhorse of artificial intelligence.

Geoffrey Hinton, a professor emeritus at the University of Toronto and a Google researcher, says he is now "deeply suspicious" of back-propagation, which underlies many advances in the artificial intelligence field today.

Credit: Johnny Guatto/University of Toronto

In 1986, Geoffrey Hinton co-authored a paper that, three decades later, is central to the explosion of artificial intelligence (AI). But Hinton says his breakthrough method should be dispensed with, and a new path to AI found.

Speaking with Axios on the sidelines of an AI conference in Toronto on Wednesday, Hinton, a professor emeritus at the University of Toronto and a Google researcher, said he is now "deeply suspicious" of back-propagation, the workhorse method that underlies most of the advances we are seeing in the AI field today, including the capacity to sort through photos and talk to Siri. "My view is throw it all away and start again," he said.

The bottom line: Other scientists at the conference said back-propagation still has a core role in AI's future. But Hinton said that, to push materially ahead, entirely new methods will probably have to be invented. "Max Planck said, 'Science progresses one funeral at a time.' The future depends on some graduate student who is deeply suspicious of everything I have said."

 

From Axios
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