Standard Equipment 2
Thinking Machines 6
This book is about the human mind, how does it works , where it came from, what makes memories fade from our minds, what makes us laugh, and everything you can imagine that the mind can do. There is no robot that can make the same things a human can, for example to read, feel, touch, etc, and therewill be none at least in this century. The nature found solutions that human engineers cannot duplicate yet. Our own psychology comes from some divine force or mysterious essence or almighty principle. Human psychology is explained bi a single cause which is a large brain, culture, language, socialization, complexity, self-organization and neural-networks dynamics. Our minds are designed to solveproblems which are packed with high-tech systems each contrived to overcome its own obstacles; there is nothing that animates our mind to work. If we put a look trough a robot’s eyes it would not look like a movie picture decorated with crosshairs but it would be like a lot of numbers some of a big amount some not. Each number would represent the brightness of one of the millions of tiny patchesmaking up the visual field, the smaller would come from the darker patches while the larger from brighter patches. All numbers are signals coming from an electronic camera trained on a person’s hand. For a robot brain as well as for a human brain to recognize objects would depend on the crunching of the numbers.
A visual system must locate where an object ends and begins. The world is projectedinto our eyes as a mosaic of tiny shaded patches. Once the visual world had been put into objects, it is necessary to know what the objects are made of. It depends of the amount of light hitting a certain spot on our retina to see how pale or dark an object is, as well as how bright or how dim the light that is illuminating the object is. A camera does not lie but our visual system does much better.It let ups see the bright outdoor coal as black and the dark indoor snowball as white. There exists a harmony between how we see the world and how the world is; it must be an achievement of our neural wizardy. Another problem that our mind can do is seeing in depth, our eyes are capable to squash the 3D world into a pair of two dimensional retinal images, and the third dimension must bereconstituted by the brain. When an object appears it projects on our retina and it would fit its own template like a round peg in a round hole. Our face keep a record of every shape of all the faces we know and this record is matched with a retinal image even when this image is distorted in all the ways we have been examining.
The invention of the wheel is often held up as one of the proudestaccomplishments of men to the world and to the civilization, they are good but only in a world with roads and rails; legs are much way better. Legs have to change its point of support all at once, and the weight has to be unloaded to do that. The motors that control a leg have to alternate between keeping the foot on the ground while it bears and propels the load and taking the load off to make the leg feelfree to move; they have to keep the center of gravity of the body within the polygon defined by the feet so the body does not topple over. If we solve these problems we would have figured out how to control a waling insect. When we walk we tip over repeatedly and break our fall in the nick of the time, when we run we take off in bursts of flight; these allow us to plant our feet on footholds thatwould not prop us up at rest, and to squeeze along narrow paths and jump over obstacles. Another challenge is to control an arm; it is a single tool that manipulates objects of an astonishing range of sizes, shapes and weights.
A human cannot treat every object it sees as uniq1ue, it has to put objects into categories so that it may apply its knowledge about similar objects that it had seen in...