The U.S. Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is funding scientist Shane Mueller's efforts to expand upon the Turing test as part of an attempt to determine the level of artificial intelligence in bot tots. DARPA is interested in developing robots with the capabilities of an average toddler. "There were many motivations for this target, but one central notion is that if one could design a system with the capabilities of a two-year-old, it might be possible to essentially grow a three-year-old, given realistic experiences in a simulated environment," Mueller says.
DARPA's goal is for bot tots to become super smart by learning like a human. Mueller uses a testing schema that has categories for visual recognition, search abilities, manual control, knowledge learning, language and concept learning, and simple motor control. The artificial intelligence agents would initially operate much like a toddler, but they would gradually learn from their surroundings and an instructor, and eventually gain advanced cognitive capabilities.
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