An anonymous reader writes "With entrants to this year's Loebner Prize, the annual Turing Test designed to identify a thinking machine, demonstrating that chatbots are still a long way from passing as convincing humans, this article asks: what happened to the quest to develop a strong AI? 'The problem Loebner has is that computer scientists in universities and large tech firms, the people with the skills and resources best-suited to building a machine capable of acting like a human, are generally not focused on passing the Turing Test. ... And while passing the Turing Test would be a landmark achievement in the field of AI, the test’s focus on having the computer have to fool a human is a distraction. Prominent AI researchers, like Google’s head of R&D Peter Norvig, have compared the Turing Test’s requirement that a machine fools a judge into thinking they are talking to a human as akin to demanding an aircraft maker constructs a plane that is indistinguishable from a bird."
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