Ouroboros meets Artificial Intelligence

Snake Eats TailIf you’ve examined The Enigmatic Book of the Netherworld , you’ll know that the mythical creature Ouroboros was a snake-like being traditionally depicted in the act of swallowing its own tail. The inherent symbolism of Ouroboros’s circularity has recently been adopted by the Artificial Intelligence fraternity – specifically by Dr. Knud Thomsen of the Paul Scherrer Institut, Switzerland. In 2008 he developed The Ouroboros Model of self-referential recursive processing with alternating phases of data acquisition and evaluation. How does it work?

“An iterative monitor process termed ‘consumption analysis’ is checking how well expectations triggered a one point in time fit with successive activations. A principal activity cycle is identified. Freezing for once the perpetually cycling activity and selecting an almost arbitrary starting point the following succession of steps can be outlined:

… anticipation,
action / perception,

These sub-processes are linked into a full circle, and the snake bites its end, the Ouroboros devours its tail.”

For further clarification, why not check out this video, from the Third Conference on Artificial General Intelligence, in which Dr. Thomsen highlights Concept Formation in the Ouroboros Model.


Note: The video might seem to drift in and out of focus. This is normal. It’s the video – not you, or your computer.