Alan next turned a little aside from this central idea in order to consider the objection to the idea of machine 'intelligence' that was raised by the existence of problems insoluble by a mechanical process—by the discovery of Computable Numbers, in fact.
In the 'ordinal logics' he had invested the business of seeing the truth of an unprovable assertion, with the psychological significance of 'intuition'.
But this was not the view that he put forward now.
Indeed, his comments verged on saying that such problems were irrelevant to the question of 'intelligence'.
He did not probe far into the significance of Godel's theorem and his own result, but instead cut the Gordian knot:
I would say that fair play must be given to the machine.
Instead of it sometimes giving no answer we could arrange that it gives occasional wrong answers.
But the human mathematician would likewise make blunders when trying out new techniques.
It is easy for us to regard these blunders as not counting and give him another chance, but the machine would probably be allowed no mercy.
In other words then, if a machine is expected to be infallible, it cannot also be intelligent.
There are several theorems which say almost exactly that.
But these theorems say nothing about how much intelligence may be displayed if a machine makes no pretence at infallibility.