What is computing?

Reading comments to discussion “Can we compute an answer to every question?” on Linkedin (group Artificial Intelligence Researchers, Faculty + Professionals) I have asked what is actually computing. Pedro Marcal has given the next answer

“Computation is the control and execution of one or more machines to produce a desired answer.” The machines may be broken down into the following classes:

  1. Turing type digital computers.
  2. Neural type. This is the class that all animals, including man have. It includes the type that Kurzweil wishes to simulate to get to the Singularity. I will call the latter a hybrid between the Turing and this class, it includes neural networks.
  3. Structural phonetic type. This is where I have placed DNA and Genomic reproduction. Also where future advances in NLP and automatic programming will be placed. The dictum of AI-“data is the program and program is the data will be dominant.”
  4. Analogue computing which takes advantage of the exact mathematical equality between two physical processes. This may include a hybrid with the Turing Class of computers.

We call the control and execution medium a computer program. Like all programs they can be defined by their complexity.”


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