Animated fight scenes and the Turing Test
I recently gave some analogies to show the emptiness of the Turing Test in terms of deciding whether a computer is intelligent or not. Commenters managed to find some completely irrelevant ways in which my analogies were not exactly like the Turing Test. One of them went so far as to claim that the Turing Test wasn't about deciding whether computers are intelligent. In that case, fine, I can stop writing about it. But it certainly is used that way, again and again, by people who want to be able to claim, "Well, a computer passed the Turing Test, therefore, it is intelligent!"
In any case, I thought I would offer and even closer analogy, to make it harder for AI devotees to evade the main point of these examples. (That they will try to evade it, I have no doubt, for the will to believe is strong!)
So let us consider the equivalent of a Turing Test for simulated battles, such as those in The Lord of the Rings. In this case, the analogous test will involve having the judges sit in front of two monitors, watching a battle scene on each one. One of them will be a battle of real armies, while the other one will be computer-generated. Now, if the judge cannot tell which is the flesh-and-blood battle, that is an excellent sign that the people creating the simulation have done a very good job of simulating a battle.
But Turing Test advocates want to claim much more than that: the analogy to their claim, for the case of the two battles, is that if we can't tell the two battles apart, then the computer simulation is a real battle. When someone gets their head cut off in the computer simulation, if the viewer cannot tell if it was a real head and a real severing or not, then it was a real severing!
And of course, this is nonsense. The fact that one can simulate something so well that it can't be distinguished from the real thing does not make it the real thing!