In addition to the link posted by dang about the previous discussion, here are some other articles I found interesting on Alan Turing's "Type-B Unorganised Machines"
Evolved Turing neural networks
Turing's Neural Networks of 1948
Organical systems convey much more, and predominantly analog signals, that don't have any sort of equivalent silicon basis. Wetware, a computer in every living cell by Dennis Bray goes into detail in how multidemnsional and complex the information processing in even individual cells is, down to single celled organisms executing complex behaviour.
You don't need to be religious to be sceptical and to see the difference between organic and non-organic information processing. In computer science circles there tends to be an overemphasis of neural connections over the actual matter and structure of neural cells.
But the GP is saying that it's possible to create some computer that replicates it (even if we can't do it now). I don't see anything disagreeing with it in your post.
>predominantly analog signals, that don't have any sort of equivalent silicon basis.
They said the computing units we use on silicon are, at a fundamental level, completely different. And I'm inclined to believe them. Yes, it is computable to simulate the sort of computational processes they allude to. And yes, it would be very slow to do that. But I'm just noting that that was not their point.
To your point, some people subscribe to a theory that the distributed nature and synchronicity of neural mechanisms makes then similar to n-body problems (then you're modeling these mechanics as ODEs). To that end, I don't think any amount of compute will solve them exactly at that level of granularity. So yeah, 'theoretically' replicable but many things are theoretically possible, and I don't think they'll be practically useful soon (like Dyson Spheres for an extreme example).
That being said, I don't think approximation is a bad approach at all given we are aware of the fact that we're approximating. Directly replicating... while philosophically interesting, is just not useful.
I'm sorry, but are you claiming that our brain is hard to simulate because it's chaotic?
That's not a useful idea. If that is true, than it only means that we have a lot of accidental complexity and it's much easier to make something more intelligent than us than it's to simulate ourselves. This would add no constraints on the creation of a general AI.
Further, the ability to withstand minor effects like the pressure changes from each heartbeat or the shock from individual steps represent a robust system. Worse the brain needs redundancy to deal with things like cell deaths.
We can argue that simulating you needs quantum level precision, but we can’t tell if someone is replaced with a fairly close copy because that’s literally happening all the time.
Get enough neurotransmitters of the right type at the receptors of each neuron and it fires. At the level of chemistry that’s very much computable. It’s only by digging one step below that and saying you need to simulate quantum effects for some reason that doing so in a chip becomes an issue.
Lots of evidence neurons encode for both digital and analog signals
On the other hand, the more I learn about the biological side of things, the more I begin to suspect that there are compositional principles underlying biological function, that some of the complexity is in fact mere degeneracy evolved into living systems for the sake of redundancy/survivability rather than performing entirely independent functions.
1 - Are unknown physical principles employed-by / affective-to the living sentient organisms. (Interesting follow up: are all physical processes and phenomena comprehensible.)
2 - Are all physical processes and phenomena subject to simulation (in practice, not principle).
If No (Yes) Yes, then I suppose there is nothing stopping us from building "a man in our own image".
What's that mean?