If you are looking for an answer to the question What is Artificial Intelligence? and you only have a minute, then here's the definition the Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence offers on its home page: "the scientific understanding of the mechanisms underlying thought and intelligent behavior and their embodiment in machines."
However, if you are fortunate enough to have more than a minute, then please get ready to embark upon an exciting journey exploring AI (but beware, it could last a lifetime) …
The technology for building knowledge-based systems by inductive inference from examples hasbeen demonstrated successfully in several practical applications. This paper summarizes an approach to synthesizing decision trees that has been used in a variety of systems, and it describes one such system, ID3, in detail. Results from recent studies show ways in which the methodology can be modified to deal with information that is noisy and/or incomplete. A reported shortcoming of the basic algorithm is discussed and two means of overcoming it are compared. The paper concludes with illustrations of current research directionsMachine Learning, 1, p. 81-106
This book, by a leading authority on legged locomotion, presents exciting engineering and science, along with fascinating implications for theories of human motor control. It lays fundamental groundwork in legged locomotion, one of the least developed areas of robotics, addressing the possibility of building useful legged robots that run and balance. The book describes the study of physical machines that run and balance on just one leg, including analysis, computer simulation, and laboratory experiments. Contrary to expectations, it reveals that control of such machines is not particularly difficult. It describes how the principles of locomotion discovered with one leg can be extended to systems with several legs and reports preliminary experiments with a quadruped machine that runs using these principles.
The major limitations in building large software have always been (a) its brittleness when confronted by problems that were not foreseen by its builders, and (by the amount of manpower required. The recent history of expert systems, for example highlights how constricting the brittleness and knowledge acquisition bottlenecks are. Moreover, standard software methodology (e.g., working from a detailed "spec") has proven of little use in AI, a field which by definition tackles ill- structured problems. How can these bottlenecks be widened? Attractive, elegant answers have included machine learning, automatic programming, and natural language understanding. But decades of work on such systems have convinced us that each of these approaches has difficulty "scaling up" for want a substantial base of real world knowledge.
When I wrote that we look for interest,ing articles, I made an exception, namely that we will not accept articles that reviewed or promoted commercial products. I felt that promotional articles were likely to be biased, sales-oriented and/or lacking in technical content. Reviews (particularly unfavorable ones) were bound to be criticized by the vendors as biased, uninformed, cursory, incomplete, etc. I still believe that these would be the results, although I have no evidence to prove it. At our annual AAAI Publications Committee meeting in August, the Committee suggested that I back off from this policy a little bit.