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Design Reasoning Without Explanations

AI Magazine

This article proposes connectionism as an alternative to classical cognitivism in understanding design. It also considers the difficulties encountered within a particular view of the role of explanations and typologies. Connectionism provides an alternative model that does not depend on the articulation of explanations and typologies.


Design Prototypes: A Knowledge Representation Schema for Design

AI Magazine

This article begins with an elaboration of models of design as a process. It then introduces and describes a knowledge representation schema for design called design prototypes. This schema supports the initiation and continuation of the act of designing. Design prototypes are shown to provide a suitable framework to distinguish routine, innovative, and creative design.


Review of Simple Minds

AI Magazine

Of what are minds made? In this provocative and engaging work (Simple Minds, Cambridge, Mass.: The MIT Press, 1989, 266 pages, $25.00, ISBN 0-262-12140-9), Dan Lloyd seeks to provide answers that will bridge the gap between computational and connectionist models of the mind.


Design Problem Solving: A Task Analysis

AI Magazine

I propose a task structure for design by analyzing a general class of methods that I call propose-critique-modify methods. The task structure is constructed by identifying a range of methods for each task. This recursive style of analysis provides a framework in which we can understand a number of particular proposals for design problem solving as specific combinations of tasks, methods, and subtasks. The analysis shows that there is no one ideal method for design, and good design problem solving is a result of recursively selecting methods based on a number of criteria, including knowledge availability.


Process Models for Design Synthesis

AI Magazine

Models of design processes provide guidance in the development of knowledge-based systems for design. The basis for such models comes from research in design theory and methodology as well as problem solving in AI. Three models are presented: decomposition, case-based reasoning, and transformation. Each model provides a formalism for representing design knowledge and experience in distinct and complementary forms.


Hoist: A Second-Generation Expert System Based on Qualitative Physics

AI Magazine

This article describes a causal expert system based on hypothetical reasoning and its application to the maintenance of the lower hoist of a Mark 45 turret gun. The system, Hoist, performs fault diagnosis without the use of a repair expert or shallow rules. Its knowledge is coded directly from a structural specification of the Mark 45 lower hoist. The technology reported here for assisting the less experienced diagnostician differs considerably from normal rule-based techniques: It reasons about machine failures from a functional model of the device. In a mechanism like the lower hoist, the functional model must reason about forces, fluid pressures, and mechanical linkages; that is, it must reason about qualitative physics. Hoist technology can be directly applied to any exactly specified device for the modeling and diagnosis of single or multiple faults. Hypothetical reasoning, the process embodied in Hoist, has general utility in qualitative physics and reason maintenance.


AAAI 1990 Spring Symposium Series Reports

AI Magazine

The Association for the Advancement of Artificial Intelligence held its 1990 Spring Symposium Series on March 27-29 at Stanford University, Stanford, California. This article contains a short summary of seven of the nine symposia that were conducted: AI and Molecular Biology, AI in Medicine, Automated Abduction, Case Based Reasoning, and Knowledge-Based Environments for Teaching and Learning.


Critiquing Human Judgment Using Knowledge-Acquisition Systems

AI Magazine

Automated knowledge-acquisition systems have focused on embedding a cognitive model of a key knowledge worker in their software that allows the system to acquire a knowledge base by interviewing domain experts just as the knowledge worker would. Two sets of research questions arise: (1) What theories, strategies, and approaches will let the modeling process be facilitated; accelerated; and, possibly, automated? If automated knowledge-acquisition systems reduce the bottleneck associated with acquiring knowledge bases, how can the bottleneck of building the automated knowledge-acquisition system itself be broken? (2) If the automated knowledge-acquisition system centers on having an effective cognitive model of the key knowledge worker(s), to what extent does this model account for and attempt to influence human bias in knowledge base rule generation? That is, humans are known to be subject to errors and cognitive biases in their judgment processes. How can an automated system critique and influence such biases in a positive fashion, what common patterns exist across applications, and can models of influencing behavior be described and standardized? This article answers these research questions by presenting several prototypical scenes depicting bias and debiasing strategies.


CYC: A Midterm Report

AI Magazine

After explicating the need for a large commonsense knowledge base spanning human consensus knowledge, we report on many of the lessons learned over the first five years of attempting its construction. We have come a long way in terms of methodology, representation language, techniques for efficient inferencing, the ontology of the knowledge base, and the environment and infrastructure in which the knowledge base is being built. We describe the evolution of Cyc and its current state and close with a look at our plans and expectations for the coming five years, including an argument for how and why the project might conclude at the end of this time.


Laps: Cases to Models to Complete Expert Systems

AI Magazine

Contrary to many prevailing approaches to knowledge acquisition, Laps, our expert-interviewing software, begins by soliciting cases from the expert, but it does not end there. Its uniqueness lies in the fact that it interweaves knowledge gathering, organizing, and testing. Laps begins with a case in the form of a sample solution path elicited from the domain expert. This sample solution path is refined by a process called dechunking, which facilitates finding a model of the expert's reasoning process. The model guides the determination of the structure of alternatives tables at an effective level of abstraction. Once these tables have been set up, the expert is able to produce row after row on his own until a complete rule base is built. A rule generator currently produces rules in Clips or M.1 syntax.