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Volume 9, Issue 4
Jul/Aug 1995
Theme: Knowledge Based Systems

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A Rule Base for Tax Planning -- Jeffrey R. Davine's Feature Article shows how to represent tax code rules that pertain to complex ownership structures.
Creativity and Tools - Creative Connections -- Daniel W. Rasmus examines computer simulations of the most human capability.
Expert Systems Through Visualization - Learning by Seeing -- Alka K. Harriger explains how she uses a visually oriented ES development tool to train knowledge engineers.
Cybernautica - Reflections on Electronic Mail Hal Berghel reflects on Electronic Mail.

Review - LEVEL5 OBJECT - Professional Release 3.6

A versatile Windows development tool from Information Builders Inc. for comprehensive solutions to intelligent system problems.

Product Updates ----------------------------> 27 late breaking product announcements from around the world in the fields of:
  Conferences Expert Systems Development
  Genetic Algorithms Helpdesk
  Internet Knowledge-based Systems
  Languages Neural Networks
  Object Oriented Development Optical Character Recognition
PC AI Buyer's Guide -----------------------> Decision Support Expert Systems
  Expert System Development Tools Training
Product Service Guide - Provides access to information on an entire category of products    
PC AI Blackboard - AI advertisers bulletin board    

Advertiser List for 9.4
AbTech Corporation Harlequin Inc Objects Inc
American Heuristics Corp Hess Consulting OXKO Corporation
Amzi! Inc HyperLogic Corporation PC AI
Applied Logic Systems Inc IBM Corporation Pinnacle Data Corporation
ATTAR Software USA IJCAI/AAAI `95 Montreal Production Systems Tech
Axcelis Inc Information Builders PWS Publishing Company
BioComp Systems Inc Intelligent Machines REDUCT Systems Inc
Blackboard Technology Intelligent Software Strategies Soft Warehouse Inc
Cogito Software Inc Kemp Carraway Heart Teknowledge Corporation
Conscious Computing KnowledgeBroker Inc GINESYS Corporation
DB EXPO `95 New York Logic Programming Assoc The Haley Enterprise Inc
EXSYS Inc Logical Design Consulting The Real-Time Intelligent
Franz Inc Man Machine Interfaces The Schwartz Associates
FuziWare Inc NeuralWare Inc TRIMMer Software Co
Gensym NIBS Inc Venue
Gold Hill Inc Object World San Francisco Ward Systems Group Inc



Our July/August issue is always a special one. One reason is that each year at this time we focus on Expert Systems, the most successful Artificial Intelligence technology. Expert Systems continue to lead AI's charge into mainstream computing, as organizations from all over the worlds of business and industry capture corporate expertise (renamed "business logic") and represent it in computers. Typically, commercial organizations interface their expert systems with traditional applications, and thereby increase the power of both kinds of programs.

The July/August issue is a milestone for me because it marks my anniversary in the Editor's chair. I began editing PC AI with the July/August issue of 1991. In the ensuing four years, PC AI and JGRMS have had a profound effects on each other. The magazine and I, I hope, are better for the experience. ("JGRMS" is my monogram. Yes, I have three middle names. It's a long story.)


This time around, the July/August issue is special for yet another (personal) reason. I have now been the Editor of PC AI for the majority of its existence. It's a great feeling -- particularly because the magazine and the field of AI continue to flourish.


And the field is flourishing, regardless of what doomsayers try to tell you. Some imply that AI is in trouble because the mainstream has absorbed so many AI technologies. Excuse me? Doesn't mainstream acceptance indicate just the opposite? This line of reasoning is strongly reminiscent of a remark made some years ago by noted social commentator Yogi Berra. When asked about a certain popular restaurant of the day, the astute Mr. Berra reportedly said: "Nobody goes there anymore -- it's too crowded."


The articles within our focus attest to our field's robustness, relevance, and resilience. In our Feature Article ("A Rule Base for Tax Planning"), Jeff Davine shows how the structures inherent in a particular expert system development tool (Eclipse) provide a perfect environment for representing the rules of tax planning. Alka Harriger ("Expert Systems Through Visualization") describes a training course for would-be knowledge engineers. Her course relies on a shell (K-Vision) which allows students to see graphic representations of knowledge bases they build. Michael Creswick reviews the latest release (3.6) of LEVEL5 OBJECT, an expert system shell whose evolution has kept pace with the latest developments in operating systems and user interfaces. Our "Buyer's Guide" presents information on over a hundred expert system tools.


I think you'll find our other articles informative, too. Dan Rasmus' second installment of "Creativity and Tools" summarizes the work of Douglas Hofstadter's Fluid Analogies Research Group and explores other computer-based simulations of the creative process. Hal Berghel ("Cybernautica") discusses the ramifications of email.


Since this is my anniversary, I'll end on a personal note. After four years in a position, people often get bored and wistfully daydream about doing other things. As far as my role as Editor is concerned, nothing could be farther from the way I feel. I still believe that Artificial Intelligence is a great adventure -- possibly the greatest of our time -- and that editing this magazine is a wonderful way to participate in that adventure. We've had great days, great articles, and issues that I'm proud of. The best ones, however, are always just ahead of us.


Won't you join me?


Joseph Schmuller

Volume 9----------------------> Issue 1 (Jan/Feb 1995)   Volume 15 Index (2001)
  Issue 2 (Mar/Apr 1995)   Volume 14 Index (2000)
Issue 3 (May/Jun 1995)   Volume 13 Index (1999)
Issue 4 (Jul/Aug 1995)   Volume 12 Index (1998)
Issue 5 (Sep/Oct 1995)   Volume 11 Index (1997)
Issue 6 (Nov/Dec 1995)   Volume 10 Index (1996)
      Volume 9 Index (1995)
      Volume 8 Index (1994)

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