Friday, April 3, 2009

This will not end well

Besides giving our future robotic masters inside access to the tools to destroy us, I'm not sure I'm too keen on robot grad students:
Dr. Lipson and Mr. Schmidt have taken their genetic programming approach from classical physics, which Newton solved centuries ago, and are now applying it to biology, where many mysteries remain. Using data on the concentrations of chemicals that take part in metabolic reactions, the computer program has dutifully discovered some new laws that perplex the human scientists.

“It’s as if you go to an oracle and you ask, ‘Tell me what’s going on here,’ and you get this equation, but then it doesn’t come with any explanation,” Dr. Lipson said. “We’re pretty sure they’re correct. But we don’t know where they’re coming from. We don’t know what they’re explaining.”
Beware of mathematic techniques that get compared to divine guidance. Just sayin'.