Can Computers Think?

Have you seen The Imitation Game? The 2014 historical drama is loosely based on the biography of Alan Turing (1912-1954), who was the first to ask the question, “Can computers think?” Turing was a Cambridge mathematics alumnus who was considered to be the father of theoretical computer science and artificial intelligence. In his seminal paper, Computing Machinery and Intelligence published in 1950, he introduced the Turing test. The test required three players: a computer, a human, and an interrogator. The players communicate with the interrogator in written form as to not reveal their identity. If the interrogator is unable to tell which of the two players was the human and which was the computer, the computer was said to have passed the Turing test.[1]

Turing speculated that by the year 2000, computers would be able to pass his test. Some bots have come close but not in the way that Turing envisioned. These bots managed to find clever ways to fool the interrogators rather than gaining the cognitive abilities of humans. As it turns out, human conversations are very complex.

Artificial Intelligence Today

While the Turing test is interesting, AI was not meant to imitate humans, per se. By thinking about the relationship between human and computer intelligence, Turing has opened the door for AI to permeate our everyday lives and accelerate innovation. Today’s computers are able to pilot spacecrafts, aid in delicate surgeries and solve massive equations, however, these are all focused, task-oriented AI activities. AI still is not sophisticated enough to truly replace a human; it assists, organizes, and automates repeatable tasks allowing humans more time to focus on tasks that require judgment, interaction, and emotion.

Seal’s contract analytics technology is a focused AI, designed specifically to improve efficiency, reduce risk, and uncover opportunity throughout the contract management lifecycle. The primary goal of enterprise contract analytics is to leverage AI, typically in the form of machine learning (ML), natural language processing (NLP) and other related models like Latent Semantic Indexing (LSI) to identify and extract critical business and legal terms from corporate contracts. At Seal, we use these technologies in combination to enable customers to find the precise answers that they are looking for to accelerate their business. Our pre-built contract analytics models drive actionable insights and solve a variety of complex use cases including GDPR, Brexit, LIBOR, and Procurement. These Advanced Analytics speed up time to value for enterprise customers, allowing them to access information faster and make better business decisions.

We are seeing every day, how AI is empowering customers to do their jobs more efficiently by automating processes and eliminating manual tasks. While we cannot say if/when computers and AI will pass the Turing test, we are sure that computer intelligence will continue to aid in industry evolution and accelerate innovation.

To learn more about the benefits of artificial intelligence, download our AI for Everyone white paper