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The "weak AI" thesis claims that machines, even if they appear intelligent, can only simulate intelligence [Bringsjord 1998], and will never actually be aware of what they are doing.Some weak AI proponents [Bringsjord 1997, Penrose 1990] believe that human intelligence results from a superior computing mechanism which, while exercised in the brain, will never be present in a Turing-equivalent computer.Advocates of a view called "strong AI" believe that computers are capable of true intelligence.
This is the great Artificial Intelligence debate, one which has not been resolved and probably never will be.
It is tempting for spiritually-inclined people to conclude that the weak AI vs.
strong AI debate is about mind-body duality, or the existence of a soul, and whether a phenomenon separate from the body is necessary for intelligence.
For example, researchers have noted that the traditional Von Neumann "stored-program" architecture, which is the basis of most of the world's computers today, is radically different from the neural structure of the brain.
"Connectionists" hope to build machines whose organization more resembles that of the brain and its neural structure, by using numerous, simple processing components connected in a massively parallel manner.