A young teenage girl enters the psychologists, Elizas, office apprehensively and sits down upon a chair. The girl begins by saying, Men are all alike. In what way? replies Eliza. Well they are always trying to run things in one way or another, the girl laments. Can you think of a specific example? Well my boyfriend made me come here.
Your boyfriend made you come here? He says Im depressed all the time. Im sorry to hear that you are depressed. Its true that I am unhappy. Do you think coming here will help you not to be unhappy? Perhaps I can get along with my mother better. Tell me more about your family? Eliza inquires. And the conversation goes on.
While this seems like a very ordinary psychologist and patient session, it is indeed not. Eliza is an Artificial intelligence Essay program. She is the result of researcher, Joseph Wiezbaum’s, attempt to make a program that can converse in English. Eliza amazed people when she appeared in the late 1960s. She was able to converse about any subject, because she stored vast subject information in her data banks. In addition Eliza was deftly able to pick up speech patterns.
Suprisingly, after creating one of the most famous programs Wiezbaum objected to bonds that interviewees were making with his creation, and denounced the intelligence of Eliza. She was intelligent, however, she could not think for herself, she was a product of sophisticated programming (Waltz). While it seemed like Eliza could understand the girl, she no more understood the girl and her problems than an alarm clock knows when to wake someone up. Eliza was one of the first programs using artificial intelligence developed; one can only imagine what the future brings.
The study of Artificial intelligence (AI) is developing rapidly. As we approach the twenty-first century new technology waits in the wings. Yet people worldwide seem to have a fear of this research and its advancements. Some have legitimate ethical or social questions about the benefits and potential costs of some of the scientific and technological advances.
However, public debate is often hindered by a basic lack of understanding of fundamental issues such as risk or scientific fact. After all, some people consider the television show the X-Files to be a quasi-documentary. Nevertheless, the advanced development of AI will bring more benefits to society than anything else, and we should embrace the possibilities of its integration into our society. In order to form an educated opinion, one must understand exactly what AI is.
AI is a term that in its broadest sense would indicate the ability of computer to perform the same kinds of functions that characterize human thought, like decision making. With the growth of modern science and technology, the search for AI has taken two major directions: psychological and physiological research into the nature of human thought, and the technological development of increasingly sophisticated computing systems (Rheingold 10). In sophisticated computing systems, the term AI has been applied to computer systems and programs capable of performing tasks more complex than straightforward programming, although they are still much removed from the realm of actual thought. The most important fields of research in this area are information processing, pattern recognition, game-playing computers, and applied fields such as medical diagnosis (McCarthy). Current research in information processing deals with programs that enable a computer to understand written or spoken information and to produce summaries, answer specific questions, or redistribute information to the users interested in specific areas of this information.
Essential to such programs is the ability of the system to generate grammatically correct sentences and to establish links between words, ideas, and to recognize associations with other ideas. As in grammar programs in medicine, which analyze the disease symptoms, medical history, and laboratory test results of a patient, and then suggests a diagnosis to the physician. The diagnostic program, which is designed to perform tasks in specialized areas as a human would, is an example of an expert system. (Waltz). Expert systems take computers a step beyond straightforward programming, as they are based on a technique called rule-based inference, in which previously established rule systems are used to process the data. Despite their sophistication, .