Computer or human - Can you tell the difference?
Release Date 02 June 2014
The University of Reading is staging the world-famous Turing Test at the renowned Royal Society in London on Saturday 7 June.
The Test is based on 20th century mathematician and code-breaker Alan Turing's famous question and answer game, can machines think? The experiment investigates whether people can detect if they are talking to machines or humans. This event is particularly poignant as it takes place on the 60th anniversary of Turing's death, six months after he was given a posthumous royal pardon¹.
During the day, which is open to the public, human ‘judges' will engage in a series of five minute keyboard conversations with five artificial conversational entities (ACE). Using a split computer screen, each judge must then decide if they are talking to an ACE or a ‘hidden human'.
If a computer is mistaken for a human more than 30% of the time it passes the test. However, no computer has ever achieved this, the closest being 29% which was achieved two years ago at an event at Bletchley Park.
In the public area there will be a number of exhibits to view and, of course, the opportunity to view the Turing Tests in action. There is also a café for visitors to purchase refreshments.
The results of the Test, organised by the University of Reading and partners RoboLaw, will be announced by Professor Kevin Warwick. Dubbed the ‘human cyborg', Professor Warwick is known for his pioneering experiments involving a neuro-surgical implantation into his own left arm.
Professor Warwick, a Visiting Professor at the University of Reading and Deputy Vice-Chancellor for Research at Coventry University, said:
"This is a chance to perhaps see history in the making. It is entirely possible that the Turing Test will be passed at this event. If so, it will be a significant milestone in artificial intelligence. We live in the age of the internet. Computers continue to evolve and become more powerful and prevalent in homes and industry around the globe. Sadly, with these amazing advances comes cybercrime. The Turing Test provides us with a unique opportunity to assess the potential impact of cybercrime. If a machine can fool you into believing that it is a human this means it is considered to be a living, thinking being."
Turing Test 2014 will take place at The Royal Society, 6-9 Carlton House Terrace, London SW1, on Saturday 7 June between 10.00am and 6.30pm. Visitors can register in advance email@example.com up until 5pm on Wednesday 4 June - after that registration will be subject to availability/space on the day. Admission is free