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Algorithmic Cognition


This video is part of the Complexity Explorer team.

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You can test how random you can behave using this tool online:

Among other striking results, we have shown that humans best outsmart computers when they are 25 years old. When competing against all possible algorithms, humans behave most algorithmic random (and somehow more creative in this sense) than most computer programs when they are 25 years old.

Important Disclaimer: This animation is an attempt to explain what we think are some of the most salient results of our research packed into a ~ 4-minute video. For further details, including context, limitations and further technical nuances, please do read the papers:

- Human behavioral randomness peaks at age 25
N. Gauvrit, H. Zenil, F. Soler-Toscano, J.-P. Delahaye, P. Brugger
PLoS Computational Biology (forthcoming)

- The Information-theoretic and Algorithmic Approach to Human, Animal and Artificial Cognition
N. Gauvrit, H. Zenil, J. Tegnér


- Quantifying Natural and Artificial Intelligence in Robots and Natural Systems with an Algorithmic Behavioural Test
H. Zenil

Notice that this video is not suggesting that the brain encodes everything into mathematical functions, that is the wrong reading. The brain does try to make (algorithmic) sense and it tries to shorten everything in a process similar to compression (our point) but it does not mean that always succeeds nor that it may do it efficiently or effectively. In fact not even the most powerful (Turing-universal) computer programs can do this effectively or efficiently given that the problem of finding the shortest computer program for a piece of data is uncomputable in general. Our point is that the brain will always try to find patterns in data and thus patterns can also be algorithmic rather than only statistic in nature as our research suggests.