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AI Pioneer John Mccarthy, 1927-2011

By Jack Rosenberger

October 25, 2011

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Artificial intelligence pioneer and Lisp creator John McCarthy, who received the A.M. Turing Award in 1971, passed away on October 23. He was 84.

McCarthy coined the term “artificial intelligence” in 1955 as part of his proposal for the 1956 Dartmouth Summer Research Conference on Artificial Intelligence, a seminal event in the creation of AI as a field of scientific study.

In 1958, McCarthy created Lisp, the second-oldest high-level programming language in widespread use today (the first is Fortran). After its publication in 1960, Lisp quickly became the leading programming language for AI applications.

McCarthy taught at Dartmouth, Princeton, and MIT before becoming a full professor at Stanford in 1962. He remained at Stanford until his retirement in 2000.

For a CNET obit, click here.  For a TechCrunch obit, click here. For a Wired obit, click here.

McCarthy's 1960 paper, "Recursive Functions of Symbolic Expressions and Their Computation by Machine, Part I," click here.

McCarthy on "What is Artificial Intelligence," click here

McCarthy on "The Implementation of Lisp," click here.

McCarthy, Formal Reason Group, Stanford, click here

McCarthy's Wikipedia entry, click here.



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