Here is where I don’t agree.
Flight is quite complex and when it was achieved, we didn’t know all that was involved to achieve it from a physic modelling perspective, but we did know that if you do A and B and C and D and … then a thing flew. By removing components of the model, over time we got to the basics to make a thing fly. A set of core requirements.
When it comes to intelligence we are building A and C and F and various other components based on our understanding of both data and the human mind.
At some point we’ll get a machine that acts enough like a consciousness that we’ll point our finger and say ‘excellent, we’ve done it’. Then we’ll remove functional parts of the machine until its intelligence stops. Then we’ll put parts back and disable other parts until it stops. Over and over till we get the A plus B plus C equation for a certain type of behaviour.
I say behaviour rather than intelligence because just as philosophy suggests that I think and have evidence by being the thinker, and my guess is you think because you are the same type of animal as me and do the same things. (We obviously have direct evidence of other people thinking by taking scans and watching the thinking.)
But when a largish black box clutching a teddy bear tells me it is thinking, we’ll mostly trust it by its behaviour more so than any statement it might make. So just like flight we’ll have an A plus B plus C model that gives us intelligent behaviour, then we’ll shrink even those until we can regularly build something with the intelligence of a cat, or a bird, or a primate, or a superior to human.
I suspect we’ll build a thing that builds a slightly better thing etcetera until we don’t understand what is inside even the A and B and C parts of our teddy clutching box. So maybe after writing too many words I’ve come around to the point where I agree with you after all. Maybe intelligence will never be as concrete as aerodynamic forces.
But then again, we haven’t done it yet. Flight was once considered impossible and magic, but birds flew which suggested it was possible. Some suggest conscious machines are impossible and magic, yet there are many conscious creatures (none of which are made with anything but normal matter) which means an arrangement of matter can be conscious.
When we’ve finally nailed consciousness and intelligence etcetera, then we’ll have an answer to this conundrum. Now I’m off to read the article you linked. Cheers mate. Hasta luego.