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224RE: AI

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  • Logan, Patrick D
    Apr 2, 2002
      Thanks for all that great information, Mike.

      Another entry high on my list is Understanding Computers and Cognition,
      Winograd and Flores.


      Regarding what's happening with AI and the current XML & RPC technologies...
      I wonder if there is some value in looking at this in a static vs. dynamic
      dichotomoty. Kind of a "BIG AI UP FRONT" vs. "DO THE SIMPLEST AI THAT COULD
      POSSIBLY WORK" dichotomy?

      The latter can be seen in this collection of papers, Cambrian Intelligence
      by Rodney Brooks...


      XML technologies in general seem to fit in those two buckets, static and
      dynamic. Some uses of XML appear to be "HEAVYWEIGHT XML". More complicated
      uses of SOAP, WSDL, UDDI, etc. Maybe RDF, but I have not read too much about
      it. "LIGHTWEIGHT XML" could include XML-RPC, etc.

      In general each generation of software technology seems to reinvent a lot of
      ideas, for better or worse. Rather than build the same ideas into the
      current layers of technology (DotNet, Java, SOAP, XSD Schema, HTTP, etc.)
      maybe it would be useful to view these technologies as a "NEW ASSEMBLER

      Instead of PDP-11 assembler or worse, and building from the bits up, we get
      to build a new dynamic base on top of some fairly powerful components.
      Rather than building "In Java", we get to build "On Java". I've been doing a
      good bit of programming in JScheme, which is "On Java" and so can take
      advantage of every Java class on the Internet. It has a simple syntax using
      Java reflection to make this simple and painless. Java and all those classes
      are the assembler language. (To the point where JScheme code can be
      "compiled" to a .class to remove the reflection overhead.)

      The result is powerful *and* lightweight. I think the simplest AI that could
      possibly work could be built on this platform. Perhaps more emphasis is
      required on simplicity, pulling us up out of the complexity of the current
      popular technology. Today's technology is some much better than yesterday's,
      I think we forget how complex it *still* is nevertheless!

      -Patrick Logan
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