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China has developed a computer that beats humans at IQ tests

For the first time, a computer is genuinely smarter than the average person.


Mike Wehner


When it comes to indexing information and recalling data based on simple queries, computers have long outpaced the human mind, but the mushy processors inside our skulls have always had an edge when it comes to verbal reasoning and complex language problems. 

That might be changing, as Chinese researchers have developed a deep learning machine capable of besting humans in all phases of a traditional IQ test for the first time ever.

Computer gurus from Microsoft and the University of Science and Technology of China set out to give a powerful computer the same reasoning skills as the human mind, allowing it to inherently understand the relation between words and how they are used in modern language.

By giving the system a massive collection of writing samples to study and learn from, the computer not only learns what words are synonymous with others, but also the context in which words with several meanings are used to express different things. 

The result is a computer that, when put up against 200 different human IQ test results, performed better than the average person. It marks a first in the area of computer learning, and—if we’re being honest—yet another step towards a future where ultra-intelligent robots rule humanity with an iron fist. 

The team’s research paper sums the results up as “highly encouraging,” while noting that “with appropriate uses of the deep learning technologies, we could be a further step closer to the true human intelligence.” 

H/T Technology Review | Photo via sage_solar/Flickr (CC BY SA 2.0)

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