Random selection produces free will
Machines can exhibit free will by way of random selection, produced in the machine via the generation of random values (for example by sampling random noise).


Free will can be produced in a machine that has either a random number generator or behavior that appears quite random to the ordinary observer. Turing, 1951.

The Turing Argument

Andrew Hodges quotes Turing in a summary of Turing's position:

"[Incorporating a free will element in a machine] could be done either by 'something like a roulette wheel or a supply of radium'--that is, by the kind of random number generator that worked like the Rockex tape generator, off random noise--or else by machines 'whose behaviour appears quite random to anyone who does not know the details of their construction.'" (Hodges 441-442)


Hodges, Andrew. 1983. Alan Turing: The Enigma. Simon and Schuster.

Turing, A.M. 1951. "Can Digital Computers Think?" Aired on the BBC, May 15, 1951.

Artificial Intelligence »Artificial Intelligence
Can computers think? [1] »Can computers think? [1]
No: computers can't have free will »No: computers can't have free will
Random selection produces free will
Nil preference situations »Nil preference situations
Helplessness Argument »Helplessness Argument
Randomization eliminates free will »Randomization eliminates free will
Alan Turing »Alan Turing
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