IJMC How To Design Your Own AI

                     IJMC - How To Design Your Own AI

Ok, so a little extrapolation is required if you want to build your 
own...but here is one guy's experiences. I wonder whatever happenned to 
his socks?                                                        -dave

The following file was found at Carnegie Mellon at

                             The AI Notebook
        by Jonathan R. Partington <jrp1@phoenix.cambridge.ac.uk>

                More triumphs in Artificial Intelligence
                           by Charles Cabbage

It is a while since I explained how I managed to give sentience to a can
of beans and later created "Artificial Wisdom".  My most recent project
has been to design an "Intelligent Terminal" -- some form of microcom-
puter, or PC, which can not only be used as a terminal to our IBM
mainframe, but is able to perform useful functions in its own right. 

It is very important to get the level of intelligence just right: in my
first attempt, I designed a terminal so clever that it caught religion,
and would refuse to transmit data to the mainframe on the grounds that it
was too busy praying for my soul.  I don't know if it ever discovered
God's E-MAIL address, because the whole computer centre was later struck
by lightning and we had this terrible plague of frogs -- Heaven knows what
message it was trying to send on my behalf. 

I then decided to reduce the genius level a bit, but my Mark II terminal
turned out to be too stupid.  "Transmit data to mainframe, Igor" I would
tell it, to which it would reply "Uh, what data, Master?" which was a bit
infuriating after three hours of typing.  Apparently its "mind" had been
wandering and it had been dreaming romantic dreams about the drinks
machine nearby. 

Evidently I was on the wrong tack.  However, while I was washing my socks
the next day, inspiration struck.  Obtaining access to a washing machine,
I poured three cans of alphabet soup into the top of it, wired it up, and
pressed the "Wash at 300 baud" button.  I sat down in front of the large
screen and waited.  Before my eyes the alphabet soup formed the words
"WAITING FOR TERMINAL INPUT".  But there was the problem -- although the
terminal had 5 function keys (labelled with mysterious runes such as "Slow
Spin" and "Rinse Hold") there were no typewriter keys.  I would therefore
have to provide voice input, in the same way as a broken car will often
run better if shouted at. 

Bravely I opened the lid and shouted in "Log me on to the IBM, edit my
paper to change every occurrence of the words 'Hilbert Space' into 'Martha
the whistling Tapeworm', correct Theorem 3, print it out, and send it to
the Bulletin of the London Mathematical Society."  The screen displayed
the words "NO PAPER", so I threw in some old newspapers, three odd socks
and some soap powder, and waited.  Within a few seconds, the door burst
open and alphabet soup and shredded newspaper flew out into my face.
However, the socks had disappeared! 

A week later I received an unexpected letter from the London Mathematical
Society, thanking me for sending them my socks but regretting that owing
to pressures of space they were unable to publish them.  This I account a
partial success, though clearly more development is necessary. 

Donations to help me continue my researches should be sent to:

    Charles Cabbage,
    Third Washing machine from the right,
    Scrubbosox laundrette,

  Softworks, Mark Means, Independent Systems Consultant
  PGP key ID: 0xF1F4A289
  Herbal supplies on the net........................
       Herbs-Online at (http://herbs-online.com/)

IJMC March 1997 Archives