Publishers Weekly - Publisher's WeeklyReaders interested in artificial intelligence, or AI, should find this full-scale update of the field indispensable. The book takes its place with such notable works on the subject as Douglas Hofstadter's Godel, Escher, Bach and Pamela McCorduck's The Universal Machine. In detail, consecutively but with a keen awareness of the interdisciplinary nature of AI, Johnson traces the history of the burgeoning science from its earliest practitioners to today's corporation-funded engineers and experts: Roger Schank, Terry Winograd, Doug Lenat and others who are struggling to create machines that can actually think independently, going beyond man-made programs and ``games.'' Johnson presents the counterarguments of some theoriststhat intelligence is less than soul and that the ``new science'' moves arrogantly into dangerous territory. Necessarily inconclusive, this hefty study is clear, comprehensive and provocative. Illustrations. (September 26)
Library Journal - Library JournalJohnson has written an extensive treatment of the history, content, politics, and philosophy of the new computer science subdiscipline of Artificial Intelligence (AI). He has captured much of the flavor of the skirmishes between research factions, and between research/science and application/engineering orientations. It is an energetic field, much in the spotlight these days, and Johnson has met and talked with many of the major players: Edward Feigenbaum (of Feigenbaum and Feldman), Marvin Minsky, Roger Schank, Doug Lenat, Patrick Winston, and numerous others. A clearly written, conscientiously researched, and richly detailed coverage of the field as it is, as it was, and possibly as it might be. Hilary D. Burton, Lawrence Livermore National Laboratory, Livermore, Cal.
- Microsoft Press
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