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Anarchy in action [AI software complexity]

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1 Author(s)
Grand, S. ; Cyberlife Technol. Ltd., USA

As software complexity grows (which it inevitably does), the problems of managing that complexity grow exponentially. Nowhere is this more significant than in AI, where we are attempting to emulate some of the most sophisticated and complex forms of behavior. It is a reasonable assertion that intelligent systems cannot be simplified-that their behavior is necessarily a result of their immense complexity. If we are to make intelligent computer programs, they must be complex. If that complexity exceeds our ability to manage it by conventional top-down modes of thought, then we must find another way. To do this, we need to understand how anarchy works. One of the largest anarchies on the face of this planet is your own body. Perhaps the most striking feature of complex organisms is their cellularity. A cell's most significant feature is its membrane. The membrane's purpose is to keep the outside out and the inside in. Modern software uses a similar concept to isolate components from each other, through the object-oriented programming methodology. In many respects, the biological concept of cellularity is applicable to computer software, especially if you have a predilection for designing bottom-up, massively parallel simulations for creating intelligent artificial life-forms

Published in:

Intelligent Systems and their Applications, IEEE  (Volume:13 ,  Issue: 1 )

Date of Publication:

Jan/Feb 1998

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