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Generating meaning: active inference and the scope and limits of passive AI

Pezzulo, Giovanni; Parr, Thomas; Cisek, Paul; Clark, Andy; Friston, Karl; (2023) Generating meaning: active inference and the scope and limits of passive AI. Trends in Cognitive Sciences S1364-6613(23)00260. 10.1016/j.tics.2023.10.002. (In press). Green open access

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Abstract

Prominent accounts of sentient behavior depict brains as generative models of organismic interaction with the world, evincing intriguing similarities with current advances in generative artificial intelligence (AI). However, because they contend with the control of purposive, life-sustaining sensorimotor interactions, the generative models of living organisms are inextricably anchored to the body and world. Unlike the passive models learned by generative AI systems, they must capture and control the sensory consequences of action. This allows embodied agents to intervene upon their worlds in ways that constantly put their best models to the test, thus providing a solid bedrock that is - we argue - essential to the development of genuine understanding. We review the resulting implications and consider future directions for generative AI.

Type: Article
Title: Generating meaning: active inference and the scope and limits of passive AI
Location: England
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1016/j.tics.2023.10.002
Publisher version: https://doi.org/10.1016/j.tics.2023.10.002
Language: English
Additional information: © 2023 The Author(s). Published by Elsevier Ltd. This is an open access article under the CC BY license (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/4.0/).
Keywords: Active inference, embodied cognition, foundation models, generative AI, large language models, predictive processing
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Brain Sciences > UCL Queen Square Institute of Neurology > Imaging Neuroscience
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/10182406
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