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) …
Interactive intelligent systems often suffer from a basic conflict between their computationally intensive nature and the need for responsiveness to a user. This paper introduces the Interviewer/Reasoner model, which helps to reduce this conflict. The Interviewer's primary function is to gather data while providing an acceptable response time to the user. The Reasoner does most of the symbolic computation for the system.
We describe a program for verifying that a set of rules in an expert system comprehensively spans the knowledge of a specialized domain. The program has been devised and tested within the context of the ONCOCIN System, a rule-based consultant for clinical oncology. The stylized format of ONCOIN's rule has allowed the automatic detection of a number of common errors as the knowledge base has been developed. This capability suggests a general mechanism for correcting many problems with knowledge base completeness and consistency before they can cause performance errors.
Today, surrounded by so many automatic machines industrial robots, and the R2-D2's of Star wars movies, most people think AI is much more advanced than it is. But still, many "computer experts" don't believe that machines will ever "really think." I think those specialists are too used to explaining that there's nothing inside computers but little electric currents. And there are many other reasons why so many experts still maintain that machines can never be creative, intuitive, or emotional, and will never really think, believe, or understand anything.
A major strength of frame-based knowledge representation languages is their ability to provide the knowledge base designer with a concise and intuitively appealing means expression. To be effective as a knowledge base development tool, a language needs to be supported by an implementation that facilitates creating, browsing, debugging, and editing the descriptions in the knowledge base. We have focused on providing such support in a SmallTalk (Ingalls, 1978) implementation of the KL-ONE knowledge representation language (Brachman, 1978), called KloneTalk, that has been in use by several projects for over a year at Xerox PARC. In this note, we describe those features of KloneTalk's displaybased interface that have made it an effective knowledge base development tool, including the use of constraints to automatically determine descriptions of newly created data base items.
Three experiments have been conducted, and some novel designs and design rules have emerged. The paradigm for Eurisko's exploration is a loop in which it generates a new device configuration, computes its I/O behavior, tries to "parse" this into a functionally it already knows about and can use, and then evaluates the results. In the first experiment, this loop took place at the level of charged carriers moving under the effects of electric fields through abutted regions of doped and undoped semiconductors. This was unsurprising, as they were short sentences in the descriptive language we had defined (a language with verbs like Abut and ApplyEField, and with nouns like nDoped Region and IntrinsicChannellRegion).
BBN's project in knowledge representation for natural language understanding is developing techniques for computer assistance to decision maker who is collecting information about and making choices in a complex situation. In particular, we are designing a system for natural language control of an intelligent graphics display. This system is intended for use in situation assessment and information management.