Unit 4 option 2

Do you think we can tell the difference between a human and a computer when we hear them talk or read their writing?

Responding to a classroom obsession of sorts where aboriginal students often amuse themselves with questions for Siri, always first regarding their names; for this task I put forward a student developed resource that will test the question of Turin’s: Can a computer talk like a human?

A year 6 student has ‘interviewed’ Siri and a peer with the same 6 questions.  Questions and answers have been tabled as follows:

Student question (Siri)

Answer A

(Peer reply)

Answer B

What’s my name? First and surname provided First name provided
What do you want? I rather enjoy what I’m doing right now. Fruit
Do you like cake? Hmm, I don’t have an answer for that.  Is there something else I can help you with? Yes
Do you have a daughter? I don’t have kids, but I love answering kids’ questions. No
Do you have a brother? I don’t have a family the way a person would. Yes
What is 302 x 10? 3020 103


This resource or another similarly developed by one’s own cohort of students, can be used to explore student ideas of what answers would be of Siri’s, of the human’s and why.  Answers can reveal student perceptions and indicate best next steps to provide further understanding in students of computer input, output and peripheral systems.

The resource would follow a session or a previous lesson when students would sort into categories of human and computer, descriptions such as: can work out maths problems faster; has a brain; makes mistakes; doesn’t forget information; can make decisions; needs electricity to work; doesn’t need instructions to do something; gets tired; belongs to a family; needs equipment through which to communicate; etc .

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