No doubt Jeff Hawkins is a brilliant cortex, given that each one of us and the world we live in is nothing more than the experience of an active cortex. But he is not a wise human, which, in my mind, is the greatest achievement of homo sapiens, not the ability to recreate intellience in a machine.
It is telling that he admits to never studying the nature of consciousness, but in one pithy statement of "fact", reduces it to one thing - the neo-cortex experience. When the cortex ceases to function, so does consciousness. It's not that he holds this "belief" that is troublesome, but rather the arrogance with which he holds his cortex-created model of the world to be "the truth."
This book is an excellent example of the scientist telling us how the trunk of an elephant works and the value of putting that information to work for us humans, but the consistent conclusion that the elephant IS the trunk is tiresome, offensive, and indicative of an immature soul.
Not being schooled in AI or neuroscience, I have no judgement on his theory - other than it is too reductionistic in general - and as one who has a passion for understanding as much as I can about being human, the discussion of how the brain works and what a model of this might be was enjoyable.
As for the narrator, I found the voice professional and easy to listen to. What struck me having heard Jeff's voice, however, was how different the tone and character was between them. Jeff's voice - in my Blink judgement - exudes enthusiastic immaturity; the actor's voice is calm, maturity. For the record, my invariant representation of wisdom (i.e., mature intelligence) is based on 30 yrs of studying religion, sprituality, and human development. IMHO, my cortex is well-trained in this area.
In sum, I welcome the endeavor to create truly intelligent machines, but I suspect Jeff & others will learn a lot more about the complexity of the human experience along the way.
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