Sunday, April 15, 2007

Intelligence: inherited through genes or gained from environment?

Human Intelligence is acquired from environment, not encoded genes.
Genes provide framework, which allow to learn from environment. This framework is critical for intelligence, but does not provide intelligence by itself.

===== By Richard Loosemore (2007 April 05) in AGIRI forum =====
If we were aliens, trying to understand a bunch of chess-playing IBM supercomputers that we had just discovered on an expedition to Earth, we might start by noticing that they all had very similar gross wiring patterns, where "gross wiring" just means the power cables, bundles of wires inside each rack, and wires laid down as tracks on circuit boards.
But nothing inside the chips themselves, and none of the "soft" wiring that exists in code or memory.

Having mapped this stuff, we might be impressed by how very similar the
gross wiring pattern was between the different supercomputers that we discovered, and so we might conclude that our discovery represented a significant advance in our understanding of how the machines worked.


That last bit -- the [powerful algorithms that interact with the environment] bit -- is what makes the difference between a baby that sits there drooling and probing for its mother's nipple, and an adult human being who can understand the complexities of the human cognitive system.

Anyone who thinks that that last bit is also encoded in the human genome has got a heck of a lot of work to do ...