Complexity and Particularity: An Argument for the Impossibility of Artificial Intelligence

Cosmos+Taxis 12 (5+6):42-57 (2024)
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Landgrebe and Smith (2022) have recently offered an important mathematical argument against the possibility of Artificial General Intelligence (AGI): human intelligence is a complex system; complex systems have some properties that cannot be modelled mathematically; hence we have no viable way to build an AI that would be able to emulate human intelligence. The issue of complexity is thus at the heart of the Landgrebe and Smith approach, and they tackle this issue by postulating a set of conditions, derived from mathematics, for a system to be complex. I argue that Hayek’s “Theory of Complex Phenomena” offers an interesting alternative path to understanding what makes complex systems complex. This offers an argument complementary to that of Landgrebe and Smith, which approaches the issue of complexity from an ontological angle, and which is designed to show that AI systems are not the right kind of entity that may interact meaningfully with complex systems.

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