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Proposal for “free open artificial intelligence for everyone”

We are crowd funding on Kickstarter to create a new non-profit organization for the pursuit of “free open artificial intelligence for everyone”.

We would like to develop a free open source AI platform.  To start the project off, we would be open sourcing our BOT libre platform into the project.

The project will primarily be Java based, both server and Android, but will also have SDKs for Objective-C/iOS, PHP, JavaScript, and other languages.

If anyone is interested in supporting the project, or becoming a developer on the project, we would appreciate your support.


  [ # 1 ]

In what way will the AI differ from project Cyc (massive ontology + inference engine), other than the addition of a language interface to ask the questions? Or NELL, the never ending language learner, whose knowledge database is sourced from anyone who cares to visit the site and help out.

I can certainly see you make good on the promise of a useful cross-platform question-answering knowledge chatbot, but I am missing all arguments to support the jump from that to the promise of strong AI, and a time-frame to do it in.


  [ # 2 ]

Cyc and NELL seem to be specific knowledge or inference engines.  I think that is too narrow of a scope.  I could not find a way to talk to either Cyc or NELL, and I think being able to converse is of primary importance.  We are also looking into emotions, consciousness, imagination and other concepts.

We also wanted something in a modern language, Java, that could be capable of running on a phone.  Something not restricted to academia, but more business and application focused.  Also, we’re not building a single entity, but a platform for a community of bots.  Intelligence is not a singularity, it requires independence and interaction, (children learn mainly from other children).


  [ # 3 ]

It seems to me that you currently have a chatbot platform that seems to be well-developed given the available options to work with it. However, nothing in your information shows that the current platform has any potential to grow into something that is conscious and is actually ‘strong AI’.

Secondly, there are some obvious signals in your information that seems to suggest that there is no real science ‘under the hood’; stating that it is ‘not a simple chatplatform’ because ‘each brain is stored in it’s own database’ is pretty much a useless argument. Also, ‘strong AI’ is a term that is hardly used, today we rather talk about ‘artificial general intelligence’ (AGI), specifically when linked to ‘machine consciousness’.

So far it seems to me that you are vastly underestimating the (scientific) effort that is involved in development of a ‘conscious machine’ and AGI.

But nevertheless, I whish you all the best with your project. You might suprise us. My own project was met with large scepticism just a few years back and I surely know where I currently stand in relation to the possibility of creating real AGI wink


  [ # 4 ]

Hans, thanks for the comments.

I checked your project website, and it seems you have been working on this for a while as well.  What programming languages are you using for your project, is anything open source or available online, or is it all internal development?  I would be interested in any advice that you can provide.

I assure you we are not underestimating the difficulty of the project.  But I think we can make good progress to a thinking machine, and provide lots of useful services in our platform along the way.  This is not an all or none project, we will continue to enhance our platform with improved intelligence automation features as we go.


  [ # 5 ]

Our project has been developed from day one to be AGI, and some pretty important decisions where made in the beginning to be able to ‘get there’. One of the most important pillars of the project is a vast scientific foundation for every small step we take. My view is that you can not start out with something like chatbot technology and then ‘bolt on’ stuff to get to a higher level of cognitive capabilities. It has to be engineered from the gound up.

There is some information on our website about the development tools we use, which is mainly Python based. However, we are currently (fast) prototyping in PHP because we have access to a code-generation platform for this language. With this we have build a very extensive R&D platform, currently consisting of 16000+ lines of code and over 150 screens to manage our datamodel.


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