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Marvin Minsky

Datum narození: 9. srpen 1927
Datum úmrtí: 24. leden 2016
Další jména: Marvin Lee Minsky

Marvin Lee Minsky byl americký vědec zabývající se umělou inteligencí. Byl spoluzakladatelem laboratoře umělé inteligence na MIT a autorem několika filosofických textů. Roku 1969 obdržel Turingovu cenu, nejprestižnější ocenění v oblasti informatiky.


„Hudba je jiný způsob myšlení. Potřebujeme občas přepnout, myslet jinak, nebo se zasekneme. “

„Člověk je stroj – počítač z masa.“


„Staří Řekové měli ve vědě pěkně našlápnuto, kdyby se takhle pokračovalo, byli bychom nesmrtelní už dnes.“

„General fiction is pretty much about ways that people get into problems and screw their lives up. Science fiction is about everything else.“

„You don't understand anything until you learn it more than one way.“

„A computer is like a violin. You can imagine a novice trying first a phonograph and then a violin. The latter, he says, sounds terrible. That is the argument we have heard from our humanists and most of our computer scientists. Computer programs are good, they say, for particular purposes, but they aren’t flexible. Neither is a violin, or a typewriter, until you learn how to use it.“

„In general, we’re least aware of what our minds do best.“ The Society of Mind

„But there’s a big difference between “impossible” and “hard to imagine.” The first is about it; the second is about you!“


„We shouldn't let our envy of distinguished masters of the arts distract us from the wonder of how each of us gets new ideas. Perhaps we hold on to our superstitions about creativity in order to make our own deficiencies seem more excusable. For when we tell ourselves that masterful abilities are simply unexplainable, we're also comforting ourselves by saying that those superheroes come endowed with all the qualities we don't possess. Our failures are therefore no fault of our own, nor are those heroes' virtues to their credit, either. If it isn't learned, it isn't earned.

When we actually meet the heroes whom our culture views as great, we don't find any singular propensities––only combinations of ingredients quite common in themselves. Most of these heroes are intensely motivated, but so are many other people. They're usually very proficient in some field--but in itself we simply call this craftmanship or expertise. They often have enough self-confidence to stand up to the scorn of peers--but in itself, we might just call that stubbornness. They surely think of things in some novel ways, but so does everyone from time to time. And as for what we call "intelligence", my view is that each person who can speak coherently already has the better part of what our heroes have. Then what makes genius appear to stand apart, if we each have most of what it takes?

I suspect that genius needs one thing more: in order to accumulate outstanding qualities, one needs unusually effective ways to learn. It's not enough to learn a lot; one also has to manage what one learns. Those masters have, beneath the surface of their mastery, some special knacks of "higher-order" expertise, which help them organize and apply the things they learn. It is those hidden tricks of mental management that produce the systems that create those works of genius. Why do certain people learn so many more and better skills? These all-important differences could begin with early accidents. One child works out clever ways to arrange some blocks in rows and stacks; a second child plays at rearranging how it thinks. Everyone can praise the first child's castles and towers, but no one can see what the second child has done, and one may even get the false impression of a lack of industry. But if the second child persists in seeking better ways to learn, this can lead to silent growth in which some better ways to learn may lead to better ways to learn to learn. Then, later, we'll observe an awesome, qualitative change, with no apparent cause--and give to it some empty name like talent, aptitude, or gift.“
The Society of Mind

„In any case, I hope that it will be a good thing when we understand how our minds are built, and how they support the modes of thought that we like to call emotions. Then we'll be better able to decide what we like about them, and what we don't—and bit by bit we'll rebuild ourselves. I don't think that most people will bother with this, because they like themselves just as they are. Perhaps they are not selfish enough, or imaginative, or ambitious. Myself, I don't much like how people are now. We're too shallow, slow, and ignorant. I hope that our future will lead us to ideas that we can use to improve ourselves.“

„Papert's Principle: Some of the most crucial steps in mental growth are based not simply on acquiring new skills, but on acquiring new administrative ways to use what one already knows.“ The Society of Mind

„But, somehow, I have got to make both of these things just and right to me. I have got to make everything that has happened to me good for me. The plank bed, the loathsome food, the hard ropes, the harsh orders, the dreadful dress that makes sorrow grotesque to look at, the silence, the solitude, the shame—each and all of these things I had to transform into a spiritual experience. There is not a single degradation of the body which I must not try and make into a spiritualizing of the soul.“ The Emotion Machine: Commonsense Thinking, Artificial Intelligence, and the Future of the Human Mind

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