Is Causality Fundamental?

AI researchers have a framework in place that enables them to mathematically track how we as humans connect events into a cohesive story of cause-and-effect. However, physicists are discovering that this well-used framework in AI research falls apart when faced with quantum mechanics — the set of laws that governs the behavior of particles on microscopic scales. Now, two independent groups are using FQXi funds in an effort to uncover what’s going wrong with the model, and whether it can be fixed. Their aim is to better understand how the causality we experience in day-to-day life may emerge from the fundamental quantum level. Along the way, they hope such foundational questions could help to improve the algorithms used to build better thinking machines in the future — and tell us just what kind of reasoning is possible for an AI.


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