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 Tactical Language and Culture Training System (TLCTS) helps people quickly acquire communicative skills in foreign languages and cultures. More than 40,000 learners worldwide have used TLCTS courses. TLCTS utilizes artificial intelligence technologies during the authoring process, and at run time to process learner speech, engage in dialog, and evaluate and assess learner performance. This paper describes the architecture of TLCTS and the artificial intelligence technologies that it employs, and presents results from multiple evaluation studies that demonstrate the benefits of learning foreign language and culture using this approach.
Johnson, W. Lewis
This article gives an overview of current research on animated pedagogical agents at the Center for Advanced Research in Technology for Education (CARTE) at the University of Southern California/Information Sciences Institute. Animated pedagogical agents, nicknamed guidebots, interact with learners to help keep learning activities on track. At CARTE, we have been developing guidebots that help learners acquire a variety of problem-solving skills in virtual worlds, in multimedia environments, and on the web. We are also developing technologies for creating interactive pedagogical dramas populated with guidebots and other autonomous animated characters.
Interactive simulation environments constitute one of today's promising emerging technologies, with applications in areas such as education, manufacturing, entertainment, and training. These environments are also rich domains for building and investigating intelligent automated agents, with requirements for the integration of a variety of agent capabilities but without the costs and demands of low-level perceptual processing or robotic control. Our current target is intelligent automated pilots for battlefield-simulation environments. This article provides an overview of this domain and project by analyzing the challenges that automated pilots face in battlefield simulations, describing how TacAir-Soar is successfully able to address many of them -- TacAir-Soar pilots have already successfully participated in constrained air-combat simulations against expert human pilots -- and discussing the issues involved in resolving the remaining research challenges.