The Yuan requests your support! Our content will now be available free of charge for all registered subscribers, consistent with our mission to make AI a human commons accessible to all. We are therefore requesting donations from our readers so we may continue bringing you insightful reportage of this awesome technology that is sweeping the world. Donate now
Does GPT-4 augur the spark of AGI or end of science?
By Gary Marcus  |  Mar 29, 2023
Does GPT-4 augur the spark of AGI or end of science?
Image courtesy of and under license from
Marching into the future with an obstructed view is a bad idea, yet that seems to be happening with the rollout of GPT-4. For any of this to live up to its potential, there must be more transparency so the scientific community can identify areas of improvement and mitigate risks.


This article has been adapted from the original version, which can be found on Gary Marcus' Substack.

Last week, Microsoft put out a press release - masquerading as science - that claimed that GPT-4 was “an early (yet still incomplete) version of an artificial general intelligence (AGI) system.” This is a silly claim, given that it is entirely open to interpretation - could a calculator be considered an early yet incomplete version of AGI? How about Eliza, or Siri? A claim like this would never survive serious scientific peer review. Still, in case anyone missed the point, Microsoft then put out another similar and even more self-promotional tweet:

As one might expect, this was accompanied by the usual gushing from fans:

Fortunately, there were also some solid critical points made:

Rather than just giving this the usual critical blow-by-blow, there is a deeper issue here that needs to be looked at. As I have said before in previous articles, GPT-4 does not actually have that much to do with AGI. The strengths and weaknesses of GPT-4 are qualitatively the same as before. The problem of

The content herein is subject to copyright by The Yuan. All rights reserved. The content of the services is owned or licensed to The Yuan. Such content from The Yuan may be shared and reprinted but must clearly identify The Yuan as its original source. Content from a third-party copyright holder identified in the copyright notice contained in such third party’s content appearing in The Yuan must likewise be clearly labeled as such.
Continue reading
Sign up now to read this story for free.
- or -
Continue with Linkedin Continue with Google
Share your thoughts.
The Yuan wants to hear your voice. We welcome your on-topic commentary, critique, and expertise. All comments are moderated for civility.