The history of AI is a history of fantasies, possibilities, demonstrations, and promise. Ever since Homer wrote of mechanical “tripods” waiting on the gods at dinner, imagined mechanical assistants have been a part of our culture. However, only in the last half century have we, the AI community, been able to build experimental machines that test hypotheses about the mechanisms of thought and intelligent behavior and thereby demonstrate mechanisms that formerly existed only as theoretical possibilities. Although achieving full-blown artificial intelligence remains in the future, we must maintain the ongoing dialogue about the implications of realizing the promise.
- Bruce G. Buchanan, A (Very) Brief History of Artificial Intelligence, AI Magazine 26(4), 2006, pp. 53-60.