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A Grand Unified Theory of AI

By MIT News

April 7, 2010

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Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) research scientist Noah Goodman has developed Church, a programming language that combines a rules-based artificial intelligence (AI) system with probabilistic inference systems.

"What's brilliant about this is that it allows you to build a cognitive model in a fantastically much more straightforward and transparent way than you could do before," says University College London professor Nick Chater. In testing, the Church program behaved almost exactly like a human subject and did a significantly better job of modeling human thought than traditional AI algorithms.

Although Chater says Church is currently too computationally intensive for use in general-purpose mind simulators, he says getting the system to run is a significant achievement.

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