Ouroboros Model Snakes its way Back into the News

Posted 31 Mar 2009 at 18:31 UTC by steve Share This

When we first reported on the Ouroboros Model last year, it was just a paper containing a description of a conceptual model. Now, Knud Thomsen of the Paul Scherrer Institute has released a new paper, Flow of Activity in the Ouroboros Model (PDF format), with lots of color diagrams to make the Ouroboros Model easier to understand. If you haven't heard of it, the Ouroboros Model is a proposed cognitive algorithm for self-steered, self-learning agents such as robots. The idea behind the algorithm is to take a top down engineering approach to general intelligence and, perhaps the author notes, consciousness. The model's name is derived from Jung's interpretation of Ouroboros as an archetype of the human psyche. There does not appear to have been any attempt yet to actually build a robot with this architecture so it's anyone's guess if this would really work. If there are any adventurous robot builders looking for a new project, have at it!

Best Title Ever!, posted 31 Mar 2009 at 19:53 UTC by jeffkoenig » (Master)

Any reference of the word "Ouroboros" is by itself cause for celebration, but "Ouroboros Model Snakes its way..." just takes the cake as far as I'm concerned.

A kudo to you, sir. Well done.

Mental floss?, posted 31 Mar 2009 at 20:29 UTC by Rog-a-matic » (Master)

My first thought was that Mentifex had graduated from ASCII to Photoshop!

Mentifex, posted 31 Mar 2009 at 23:46 UTC by steve » (Master)

That's funny, I thought of our old friend Mentifex too when I saw it. I almost linked to one of his ASCII diagrams in the article. Actually implementing his algorithm on a working robot was where the Mentifex idea ran out of steam too I think. Unless someone has built one since we last heard from him.

A big heaping bowl of nothing?, posted 1 Apr 2009 at 05:10 UTC by The Swirling Brain » (Master)

It's hard to get excited about vaporware but here lately there have been several advancements that are exciting. Is this one of them? It's very hard to know especially when it's all just buzz words and smoke and mirrors at this point. Many buzz words and nothing to show for it, though makes me very suspicious. The flow chart looks like doublespeak spaghetti to me. Anyone able to decypher it? Anyone really have a glimmer of what it does? Anyway, there it is! Eat it up!

No intent, posted 2 Apr 2009 at 18:25 UTC by Rog-a-matic » (Master)

I once approached a guy after a lecture where he described a new idea in the area of motion control. I offered to help him make a prototype and see if it would work. He plainly stated that he didn't think the technology could actually be implemented in real life in spite of the amount of work he had done and the enthusiasm he had for it. I appreciated his honesty, but was amazed that someone could work on something they knew could not work. I'm afraid this is common in academia, and one of the reasons I bailed.

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