Re: Ziemke: Rethinking Grounding

From: Marinho Francis-Oladipo (
Date: Fri May 18 2001 - 14:33:22 BST

>As with the example that was given by professor Harnad, if we are all
>shown the proof of Formatís last theorem or even Einstein's equations of
>relativity, then we may consider ourselves as slightly more intelligent
>than we where yesterday because we understand these mathematical problems.
>This, however, is not necessarily true because we only obtain an
>understanding and the true intelligence lies with the person who actually
>solved or discovered the fact.

What can then be said about the person who probably could have solved the
problem but was doing something else or was not interested in the problem
at the time? If he was later told the solution to the problem along with
everybody else, and he understood it, is he less intelligent than the
problem solver just because he did not solve it?
Rephrase...Would Einstein be less intelligent because he did not solve
Fermat's last theorem but only understood how it worked by being told?

>Hence, this above statement suggests that if a prehistoric mans brain and
>a modern day mans brain are indistinguishable in terms of power and what
>they can both do, then intelligence is not knowledge, but it is having a
>conscious and being aware of what is around you and knowing what is
>happening around you.
>Thus, only if these traits are present can learning begin and knowledge

Neural nets can learn things and by so doing "acquire" knowledge. I don't
think that they have a conscience and are really necessarilly aware of what
is going on around them, yet they can learn. What is being aware of
surroundings and knowing what is happening around you if not knowledge? I'm
not saying that intelligence is or isn't knowledge. What i'm emphasising is
the Kyriacou's description of what intelligence is not, which is immediately
followed by a description of what it is with the key word
KNOWING. It seems to be slightly contradictory.

>>If we aim for fully grounded systems, i.e. systems in which every aspect,
>>element or internal mechanism is intrinsic to the whole, then we have to
>>start looking at systems which as a whole have developed in interaction
>>with their environment.
>>In fact, the only truly intelligent systems we know of are (higher)
>>animals, i.e. biological systems whose genotype has evolved over millions
>>of years, and who in many cases undergo years of individual development
>>before achieving full intelligence. Thus, animals are grounded in their
>>environments in a multitude of ways, whereas most grounding approaches
>>rather aim for hooking pregiven agents to pregiven environments, by means
>>of representations or effective behaviour.

What is a fully grounded system as compared to a semi-grounded system? How
much of a system needs to be grounded to make it a grounded system? and
then how much more before it becomes a fully grounded system? Zeimke also
talks about higher animals that have achieved full intelligence. What means
of measurement have been used to assign such a level of intelligence? These
questions, i feel, are relevant as they are in this context the grounding
for debating the said matters and if they have not been properly grounded
themselves, is there a point in trying to go further?

Francis Oladipo Marinho

This archive was generated by hypermail 2.1.4 : Tue Sep 24 2002 - 18:37:30 BST