[Artificial Intelligence] 2019-003: Showdown -- Weak AI VS Strong AI

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Weak AI and Strong AI are two terms one will most likely encounter when reading / researching about artificial intelligence. This may come as a surprise to readers, but Siri is actually considered a weak AI. Apparently, so is Google’s search and YouTube’s video algorithms. In fact, any existing system that you can think of that claims to be utilizing artificial intelligence is most likely a weak AI and not a strong AI as you may like to imagine or they want to present. So in a showdown between Weak AI vs Strong AI, which will emerge?

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The above info might be a mind-confusing info, but that is the truth. Even in this modern age of technology and communications, the most advanced artificial intelligence system that you can think of is probably considered a weak AI.

Now that I have your interest and attention, be sure to wholly read and try to understand the content of this post. This post aims to define weak AI and strong AI. This post also aims to distinguish one from another as well as the pros and cons of both.

Weak AI

Let us begin with Weak AI. Weak Artificial Intelligence is generally defined as employing AI on a system to accomplish a certain task or set of tasks. It is also commonly referred to as Narrow AI because of the relatively limited (narrow) functionality that it can perform

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This basically means that weak AI is considered as such because its decisions are based on an already predefined set of questions, tasks, information, etc… If a query or question does not fall within the set of defined parameters, the weak AI would most likely be confused and might result to an error or may even give out incorrect responses.

Let us take SIRI as an example. For sure, some iPhone users may have already an encounter with SIRI wherein the answer to their question is really far fetched or not the one they are expecting. This is because, SIRI’s responses are seemingly based on queries that is already stored in its database. Naturally, there are also conditions on when a query will be saved. It would most likely include how common the query is or how many users have asked it already.

The same can be said on YouTube’s video suggesting algorithm. The coding would likely include historical watched videos, or recently searched items from other applications (programs if one is using a computer). Of course, it does make sense. If a user is reading something or casually browsing then suddenly went to YouTube, it apparently follows that the user has encountered an idea or info and would want a video of it which is why he or she opened YouTube.

Strong AI

Let us now tackle Strong AI. Strong AI is actually the dream of any programmer or computer professional because it is the type of artificial intelligence that can think for itself. It is self-aware, it is sentient – it actually defines intelligence. It is a machine that we can safely say as having consciousness, can think for itself, and the closeness to being human – but with mechanical parts instead of biological ones. This is the reason why it is epitome accomplishment of any programmer to discover or create strong AI since it is basically like having created a human being.

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Anyway, based on its definition, strong AI does not exist yet. Some industry experts predicts that it will not be available until the next century or if it is even possible as there are many things to consider – would it behave like the human mind wherein it will start little knowledge (like that of a baby) and gradually develops overtime (similar to the maturity and growth of a human person)? Or will it begin with an already vast knowledge given the capacity of the internet?

As of this time, no one really knows for sure how strong AI goes. Since there there are no baseline or commonality to compare it to, one’s prediction about strong is just as good as the other. Remember, it took billions of years for humans to arrive to its current state and there’s no saying if the same will also apply to a machine learning full artificial intelligence sentience.

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Now that you have a general overview of what weak and strong AI is, try to interact with the Querlo chat below. If you are new to the site or arrived here from an external link, then for your information please that Querlo is known as the AI with a Heart. Want to know more, then chat below:


To recap:

  • All current systems that claims to be using artificial intelligence is likely using weak AI
  • In a weak AI, the machine’s response is based on a set of collected or predetermined algorithms making it somewhat mindless as it cannot or will not do something than what it is programmed to
  • However, even though the term weak is used, weak artificial intelligence is still composed of complex and sophisticated codes
  • Strong AI on the other hand is artificial intelligence that is adaptive and can produce outcomes similar to the true sense of humans cognitive functions


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