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What are the best online resources available for AIMA?

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  • Farid B
    Hi, A few days ago, in search for some online resources on AIMA I cam across the iCampus educational project at MIT available at:
    Message 1 of 7 , Apr 4, 2006
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      Hi,

      A few days ago, in search for some online resources on AIMA I cam across the iCampus educational project at MIT available at:

      http://icampustutor.csail.mit.edu/6.034-public/

      Now, my question is: Does any of you guys have any experience with it? Since one of the major prerequisites is learning Scheme programming language, is it worth the overhead of learning a new language? I live in Iran and Prolog is mostly advocated as the de facto programming language to learn for A.I. Should I go with Prolog or Scheme?

      As for other online resources, we all know that there are TONs of presentation slides available for AIMA. Russel's slides are fine, but they're mostly aimed at the professor and not the students, I suppose. Do you have any other resouces/slides/etc to recommend?

      Thanks in advance.



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    • Ivan F. Villanueva B.
      Hi, ... I ve heard a lot of times that learning a new [computer] language helps you a lot using the others better. And that has been indeed my personal
      Message 2 of 7 , Apr 5, 2006
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        Hi,

        > Should I go with Prolog or Scheme?

        I've heard a lot of times that learning a new [computer] language helps you a
        lot using the others better. And that has been indeed my personal experience. I
        program mostly in Java but use often recursive methods I learned from Lisp,
        Scheme and the pseudo-code of AIMA.

        > Do you have any other resouces/slides/etc to recommend?

        There is a free book about AI and lots of high quality Wikipedia pages which
        will soon become the best source IMHO.

        <advertisement>
        I'm programming a library in Java (mainly with the algorithms of AIMA). I'm
        programming applets too. You can see a preview at:
        http://www.artificialidea.com/index.php?page=my_programs
        </advertisement>

        IMHO Scheme, Lisp, Prolog (which I have no idea of) are old programming
        languages. Most projects are done in C, when performance is important, or in
        Java and Python, when performance is not very important. As a language for
        students, Python is really intuitive. I like Groovy too, but I haven't had much
        time yet to play with it.

        --
        Ivan F. Villanueva B.
        artificialidea.com
        <<< European Community Patent will bring >>>
        <<< Software patents by the backdoor >>>
        <<< http://wiki.ffii.org/ComPatEn >>>
      • Robert Futrelle
        If you have a chance to look at Norvig s book, Paradigms of Artificial Intelligence Programming: Case Studies in Common Lisp, it can teach you a lot. It will
        Message 3 of 7 , Apr 5, 2006
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          Re: [aima-talk] What are the best online resources availab
          If you have a chance to look at Norvig's book,  Paradigms of Artificial Intelligence Programming: Case Studies in Common Lisp, it can teach you a lot.  It will show you how compactly Lisp can represent and manipulate knowledge-related structures and algorithms.

          C is a poor language for AI because its syntax is so distant from the concepts you are working with.  The essence of AI is concepts and algorithms, not code and efficiency.  When trying to do symbolic computations in C, most people end up unwittingly re-implementing many of the basics of Lisp in order to do the symbolic computations. "Those who don't know Lisp are forced to reinvent it," the saying goes.

          At least Java and some other modern languages took seriously the importance of the lack of pointers and automatic memory management that were in Lisp from the beginning.  Whether or not you use Lisp, you owe it a debt of gratitude.

          BTW: What free AI book is being referred to?

            - Bob Futrelle
          _______________________________________________________________
          > Robert P. Futrelle      | Biological Knowledge Laboratory
             Associate Professor  | College of Computer  and Information
                      >              |     Science MS WVH202
          Office: (617)-373-4239  | Northeastern University
          Fax:    (617)-373-5121  | 360 Huntington Ave.
          futrelle@...    | Boston, MA 02115
                   http://www.ccs.neu.edu/home/futrelle
            http://www.bionlp.org   http://www.diagrams.org

                    http://biologicalknowledge.com
                 mailto:biologicalknowledge@...
          _______________________________________________________________
          >


          Hi,

          > Should I go with Prolog or Scheme?

          I've heard a lot of times that learning a new [computer] language helps you a
          lot using the others better. And that has been indeed my personal experience. I
          program mostly in Java but use often recursive methods I learned from Lisp,
          Scheme and the pseudo-code of AIMA.

          > Do you have any other resouces/slides/etc to recommend?

          There is a free book about AI and lots of high quality Wikipedia pages which
          will soon become the best source IMHO.

          <advertisement>
          I'm programming a library in Java (mainly with the algorithms of AIMA). I'm
          programming applets too. You can see a preview at:
          http://www.artificialidea.com/index.php?page=my_programs
          </advertisement>

          IMHO Scheme, Lisp, Prolog (which I have no idea of) are old programming
          languages. Most projects are done in C, when performance is important, or in
          Java and Python, when performance is not very important. As a language for
          students, Python is really intuitive. I like Groovy too, but I haven't had much
          time yet to play with it.

          --
          Ivan F. Villanueva B.
          artificialidea.com
          <<<                   European Community Patent will bring            >>>
          <<<                     Software patents by the backdoor              >>>
          <<<                      
          http://wiki.ffii.org/ComPatEn                 >>>
          SPONSORED LINKS
          Artificial intelligence software Artificial intelligence in business Artificial intelligence Artificial intelligence introduction


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        • Farid B
          Hi, ... I was just browsing Russel s page, and LISP was ALL over the place. Prolog was also included but not seemingly as much recommended as LISP. Yet, I
          Message 4 of 7 , Apr 6, 2006
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            Hi,

            > If you have a chance to look at Norvig's book,
            > Paradigms of
            > Artificial Intelligence Programming: Case Studies in
            > Common Lisp, it
            > can teach you a lot. It will show you how compactly
            > Lisp can
            > represent and manipulate knowledge-related
            > structures and algorithms.
            >
            I was just browsing Russel's page, and LISP was ALL
            over the place. Prolog was also included but not
            seemingly as much recommended as LISP.
            Yet, I don't have much idea about LISP, I've heard a
            lot of hackers (in the sense of e.g. Eric Raymond)
            recommend it as a must-learn programming language. I'm
            not a professional programmer, so can I learn it fast?


            > C is a poor language for AI because its syntax is so
            > distant from the
            > concepts you are working with. The essence of AI is
            > concepts and
            > algorithms, not code and efficiency. When trying to
            > do symbolic
            > computations in C, most people end up unwittingly
            > re-implementing
            > many of the basics of Lisp in order to do the
            > symbolic computations.
            > "Those who don't know Lisp are forced to reinvent
            > it," the saying
            > goes.
            >

            Our instructor has not enforced much programming, as
            you mentioned: AI is mostly concerned with concepts
            not coding.
            Therefore it doesn't make much difference for me
            whether to learn Prolog/LISP? Considering the "short
            window of learning opportunity" for learning a new
            language highly effective for my AI, pitting Prolog
            against LISP, which one wins?

            I have the AIMA book, but I need some resource that
            can teach it to me. I'm not getting much from the
            class. Now, considering my case, is learning Scheme
            for aligning myself with the MIT iCampus course on AI
            a bad idea?

            I've got the impression that Scheme is an
            easy-to-learn language. Now, can you guide me what
            path to take?

            One last point:

            I've checked Russel's slides, they're fine. But are
            there ANY better-polished ones out there?

            > BTW: What free AI book is being referred to?
            >

            Is this question addressed to me or Ivan?


            > - Bob Futrelle
            >
            _______________________________________________________________
            > Robert P. Futrelle | Biological Knowledge
            > Laboratory
            > Associate Professor | College of Computer and
            > Information
            > | Science MS WVH202
            > Office: (617)-373-4239 | Northeastern University
            > Fax: (617)-373-5121 | 360 Huntington Ave.
            > futrelle@... | Boston, MA 02115
            > http://www.ccs.neu.edu/home/futrelle
            > http://www.bionlp.org http://www.diagrams.org
            >
            > http://biologicalknowledge.com
            > mailto:biologicalknowledge@...
            >
            _______________________________________________________________
            >
            >
            > >Hi,
            > >
            > >> Should I go with Prolog or Scheme?
            > >
            > >I've heard a lot of times that learning a new
            > [computer] language helps you a
            > >lot using the others better. And that has been
            > indeed my personal
            > >experience. I
            > >program mostly in Java but use often recursive
            > methods I learned from Lisp,
            > >Scheme and the pseudo-code of AIMA.
            > >
            > >> Do you have any other resouces/slides/etc to
            > recommend?
            > >
            > >There is a free book about AI and lots of high
            > quality Wikipedia pages which
            > >will soon become the best source IMHO.
            > >
            > ><advertisement>
            > >I'm programming a library in Java (mainly with the
            > algorithms of AIMA). I'm
            > >programming applets too. You can see a preview at:
            >
            ><http://www.artificialidea.com/index.php?page=my_programs>http://www.artificialidea.com/index.php?page=my_programs
            > ></advertisement>
            > >
            > >IMHO Scheme, Lisp, Prolog (which I have no idea of)
            > are old programming
            > >languages. Most projects are done in C, when
            > performance is important, or in
            > >Java and Python, when performance is not very
            > important. As a language for
            > >students, Python is really intuitive. I like Groovy
            > too, but I
            > >haven't had much
            > >time yet to play with it.
            > >
            > >--
            > >Ivan F. Villanueva B.
            > >artificialidea.com
            > ><<< European Community Patent
            > will bring >>>
            > ><<< Software patents by the
            > backdoor >>>
            > ><<<
            >
            ><http://wiki.ffii.org/ComPatEn>http://wiki.ffii.org/ComPatEn
            >
            > >>>>
            > >
            > >SPONSORED LINKS
            >
            ><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Artificial+intelligence+software&w1=Artificial+intelligence+software&w2=Artificial+intelligence+in+business&w3=Artificial+intelligence&w4=Artificial+intelligence+introduction&c=4&s=150&.sig=Z-KgstNm21fXWEV4ASPvHQ>Artificial
            >
            > >intelligence software
            >
            ><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Artificial+intelligence+in+business&w1=Artificial+intelligence+software&w2=Artificial+intelligence+in+business&w3=Artificial+intelligence&w4=Artificial+intelligence+introduction&c=4&s=150&.sig=477uHvbluHUGZv4M3Wsnag>Artificial
            >
            > >intelligence in business
            >
            ><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Artificial+intelligence&w1=Artificial+intelligence+software&w2=Artificial+intelligence+in+business&w3=Artificial+intelligence&w4=Artificial+intelligence+introduction&c=4&s=150&.sig=LONI6S4JBLJohI0gb7t-Ug>Artificial
            >
            > >intelligence
            >
            ><http://groups.yahoo.com/gads?t=ms&k=Artificial+intelligence+introduction&w1=Artificial+intelligence+software&w2=Artificial+intelligence+in+business&w3=Artificial+intelligence&w4=Artificial+intelligence+introduction&c=4&s=150&.sig=n5dsIRz6BWbukAv5Ru4LcA>Artificial
            >
            > >intelligence introduction
            > >
            > >
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            > >
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            >"<http://groups.yahoo.com/group/aima-talk>aima-talk"
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          • Paolo Amoroso
            ... If by LISP you mean Common Lisp, i.e. the language the AIMA Lisp code is written in, you may have a look at this book: Practical Common Lisp
            Message 5 of 7 , Apr 6, 2006
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              Farid B <farid_behnia@...> writes:

              > Yet, I don't have much idea about LISP, I've heard a
              > lot of hackers (in the sense of e.g. Eric Raymond)
              > recommend it as a must-learn programming language. I'm
              > not a professional programmer, so can I learn it fast?

              If by "LISP" you mean Common Lisp, i.e. the language the AIMA Lisp
              code is written in, you may have a look at this book:

              Practical Common Lisp
              http://www.gigamonkeys.com/book


              > I've got the impression that Scheme is an
              > easy-to-learn language. Now, can you guide me what
              > path to take?

              If you are interested in Scheme, see:

              Teach Yourself Scheme in Fixnum Days
              http://gd.tuwien.ac.at/languages/scheme/tutorial-dsitaram/t-y-scheme.html

              How to Design Programs
              http://www.htdp.org


              Paolo
              --
              Lisp Propulsion Laboratory log - http://www.paoloamoroso.it/log
            • Ivan F. Villanueva B.
              ... Thanks. I will. ... If you mean GOFAI, I consider the Python sources of AIMA much easier to understand than the lisp sources. For embodied AI, like Robot
              Message 6 of 7 , Apr 6, 2006
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                On Wed, Apr 05, 2006 05:20:29PM -0400, Robert Futrelle wrote:
                > If you have a chance to look at Norvig's book, Paradigms of Artificial
                > Intelligence Programming: Case Studies in Common Lisp, it can teach you a
                > lot. It will show you how compactly Lisp can represent and manipulate
                > knowledge-related structures and algorithms.

                Thanks. I will.

                > C is a poor language for AI because its syntax is so distant from the concepts
                > you are working with.

                If you mean GOFAI, I consider the Python sources of AIMA much easier to
                understand than the lisp sources. For embodied AI, like Robot programming, C is
                the one. The best robot simulations I know, Player/Stage Project and Webots, are
                in C/C++

                > When trying to do symbolic computations in C, most people end
                > up unwittingly re-implementing many of the basics of Lisp

                "Symbolic Computations" is exactly the problem. "Symbolic Computations" are the
                reason why AI has not yet managed to create robots as intelligent as, say, a
                fish. A good book about it is: "Understanding Intelligence" by Pfeifer and
                Scheier.

                > BTW: What free AI book is being referred to?

                http://www.markwatson.com/opencontent/
                and some books in wikibooks.


                I think symbolic algorithms are an interesting field in AI, but not the only one,
                not even the most important one, and I think that fact is the first thing any AI
                student have to heard.

                Coming back to the OP's question, I would say the best languages to learn at
                the moment for AI are python because it is easy; and C/C++ for performance.

                --
                Ivan F. Villanueva B.
                artificialidea.com
                <<< European Community Patent will bring >>>
                <<< Software patents by the backdoor >>>
                <<< http://wiki.ffii.org/ComPatEn >>>
              • Robert Futrelle
                I have to agree that symbolic computation has definite limits. You could even go so far as to consider it a human conceit to try to reduce rich and complex
                Message 7 of 7 , Apr 6, 2006
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                  Re: [aima-talk] lisp and free book
                  I have to agree that symbolic computation has definite limits.  You could even go so far as to consider it a human conceit to try to reduce rich and complex phenomena to a set of discrete symbols that we create.  Corpus-based NLP, HMMs, situated robotics systems, neural nets, etc., demonstrate the power that's accessible beyond human-designated symbols.  The argument that we have symbols in our heads is a hard one to support, and it's only getting harder.

                   -- Bob Futrelle

                  _______________________________________________________________
                  > Robert P. Futrelle      | Biological Knowledge Laboratory
                     Associate Professor  | College of Computer  and Information
                              >              |     Science MS WVH202
                  Office: (617)-373-4239  | Northeastern University
                  Fax:    (617)-373-5121  | 360 Huntington Ave.
                  futrelle@...    | Boston, MA 02115
                           http://www.ccs.neu.edu/home/futrelle
                    http://www.bionlp.org   http://www.diagrams.org

                            http://biologicalknowledge.com
                         mailto:biologicalknowledge@...
                  _______________________________________________________________


                  On Wed, Apr 05, 2006 05:20:29PM -0400, Robert Futrelle wrote:
                  > If you have a chance to look at Norvig's book,  Paradigms of Artificial
                  > Intelligence Programming: Case Studies in Common Lisp, it can teach you a
                  > lot.  It will show you how compactly Lisp can represent and manipulate
                  > knowledge-related structures and algorithms.

                  Thanks. I will.

                  > C is a poor language for AI because its syntax is so distant from the concepts
                  > you are working with.

                  If you mean GOFAI, I consider the Python sources of AIMA much easier to
                  understand than the lisp sources. For embodied AI, like Robot programming, C is
                  the one. The best robot simulations I know, Player/Stage Project and Webots, are
                  in C/C++

                  > When trying to do symbolic computations in C, most people end
                  > up unwittingly re-implementing many of the basics of Lisp

                  "Symbolic Computations" is exactly the problem. "Symbolic Computations" are the
                  reason why AI has not yet managed to create robots as intelligent as, say, a
                  fish. A good book about it is: "Understanding Intelligence" by Pfeifer and
                  Scheier.

                  > BTW: What free AI book is being referred to?

                  http://www.markwatson.com/opencontent/
                  and some books in wikibooks.


                  I think symbolic algorithms are an interesting field in AI, but not the only one,
                  not even the most important one, and I think that fact is the first thing any AI
                  student have to heard.

                  Coming back to the OP's question, I would say the best languages to learn at
                  the moment for AI are python because it is easy; and C/C++ for performance.

                  --
                  Ivan F. Villanueva B.
                  artificialidea.com
                  <<<                   European Community Patent will bring            >>>
                  <<<                     Software patents by the backdoor              >>>
                  <<<                      
                  http://wiki.ffii.org/ComPatEn                 >>>

                  YAHOO! GROUPS LINKS


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