A few years ago I tried my hand at a formal definition of intelligence by saying it's 'living representation'. I'd just been observing that there isn't a formal definition of intelligence anywhere. I'd also just formally defined 'life', another key concept that has no formal definition anywhere save for the one I gave it.
You see, intelligence may be just rote memorization (yes, even the Raven's progressive matrices) but there's more to rote memorization than just recording and archival of data with absolute fidelity. Real learning builds associations and is also lossy, entirely different from the way a computer stores data. And it just occurred to me now that 'living representation' is a good way to describe the 'compression unit' described in this paper describing a formal theory of creativity, fun and intrinsic motivation.
The compression unit's purpose is to ensure the knowledge base isn't drowned in an ocean of entropy (ie, waste information). So new facts are stored and then they're associated with all old facts and the whole is recompressed all over again, continuously. And that's how you get dimensional decomposition and natural language processing since they are just compression techniques!Just a little insight inspired by thinking of idiot people incapable of coming up with proper definitions of key concepts in psych. Frankly, those psychologists who try to make definitions are so bad at it that they come up with the most ridiculous tripe unimaginable. So from that to my rather esoteric and seemingly poetic formal definition of intelligence, then to the relation between beauty and compression, and finally linking to what we know about how machine learning works.