22 March 2019

Ex_Machina (movie)

People my age will recall our MSN Messenger buddy Spleak. A bot with artificial intelligence. We asked her a question, and she responded as she wanted. Spleak was perhaps the first AI technology I encountered. Then, of course, Siri emerged. We made a proposal to her:) Occasionally she got upset with us and sometimes she gave hilarious answers… Many films have been made about artificial intelligence technologies. I’ll tell you about another such film, but this time it’s not about a machine or an operating system like in “The Her” movie. It’s Ex Machina 🙂

Ex Machina presents a highly intelligent artificial intelligence that resembles humans. I believe it is safe to assume that the plot of the film was inspired by The Turing Test (1).

The Turing test is a notion that was first mentioned in the philosophy magazine “Mind” in 1950 in the renowned article “Computing Machinery and Intelligence” by the eminent English mathematician and computer scientist Alan Turing.

A machine and a human are placed in a room for this test. An interrogator also uses a computer to pose questions to the machine and human in this room from another room. He receives responses from both. If the questioner cannot determine whether the respondent is a person or a machine based on the answers he receives – that is, if the machine answers like a human being– the machine is classified as having passed the Turing test.

In the film, we encounter a similar experimental environment. Caleb Smith, a technology firm employee, wins a company-wide drawing and spends a week at the residence of company owner Nathan Bateman. This week presents an opportunity Caleb has never had before: the chance to test artificial intelligence specifically built by firm owner Nathan.

Ex Machina official international trailer

The exam is quite similar to the Turing test, but the main distinction is that Caleb communicates with the machine he’s testing in the same room. So, knowing that the reply is already an AI, Caleb Smith asks questions. The film, in my perspective, begins right here. I believe it’s a fantastic challenge to get a man to admit she was a human being while knowing that the respondent was a computer.

The question “Will machines truly take over the world one day, or will they always be our devoted friends?” is always on the minds. It’s best to deepen our thoughts after watching the movie.

Enjoy watching…

(1) for more information, go to Turing Test Wikipedia page


Mustafa Cıngı

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