High technology

Digital computers for an analogue world

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Jonar Nader speaks about expert systems and knowledge systems that can think differently by using heuristics. This means that digital computers are better able to cope with an analogue world. To listen to an excerpt from the radio broadcast, please click on the green play button below.

Here is a transcript of the audio file.

Jonar Nader: More importantly Deep Blue comes into the realm of expert systems. It is an expert system that can help you diagnose, monitor, interpret or control it can help you predict. It can help you select or design, and these things are sometimes called knowledge systems, or intelligent assistance. They are unlike normal computers that know that 1+1 is 2 and there are no two ways about that. Current computers are absolutely rigid, whereas heuristic based computers, or expert based systems, are trying to push it into things that say well X and a little bit plus Y and a little bit equals Z and a little bit. It leaves a sense of greyness, because we live in an analogue world not a digital world. In a digital world there is such a thing as up and down and that is all there is to it. In an analogue world there is a lot of space between up and down, so what do you call something in between? So as heuristic computers, they are trying to say, well we know that 3+7 = 10 but maybe it could mean something else. 3 lions plus 7 deer could equal 3 lions all over again after they have been consumed and hunted in the wild!

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