When the circumstances are right, people can think like computers, researchers report.
Computers, like those that power self-driving cars, can mistake random scribbles for trains, fences, and even school buses. People aren't supposed to be able to see how those images trip up computers but in a new study, researchers show most people actually can. The findings suggest modern computers may not be as different from humans as we think, and demonstrate how advances in artificial intelligence continue to narrow the gap between the visual abilities of people and machines.
"Most of the time, research in our field is about getting computers to think like people," says senior author Chaz Firestone, an assistant professor in the psychological and brain sciences department at Johns Hopkins University. "Our project does the opposite — we're asking whether people can think like computers."