The New York Times featured an article today discussing recent back and forth over computer graded essays.
There seem to be many critics:
“Let’s face the realities of automatic essay scoring,” the group’s statement reads in part. “Computers cannot ‘read.’ They cannot measure the essentials of effective written communication: accuracy, reasoning, adequacy of evidence, good sense, ethical stance, convincing argument, meaningful organization, clarity, and veracity, among others.”
I cannot attest to the quality of current computer grading mechanisms, but if this group is so sure that there are intrinsic aspects of writing that computers could never (or not anytime soon) properly grade then I challenge them to create a CAPTCHA. That is, find a way to create a short test of “reading” skills that only a human could answer and put it to use in computer security contexts (preventing phishing and brute forcing etc).
Until then, I can remain hopeful about the possibilities of artificial intelligence in this context.
hat tip: Yoni Schenker