The intellectual roots of AI

The intellectual roots of AI, and the concept of intelligent machines, may be found in Greek mythology. Intelligent artifacts appear in literature since then, with real (and fraudulent) mechanical devices actually demonstrated to behave with some degree of intelligence. Some of these conceptual achievements are listed below under “Ancient History.”
After modern computers became available, following World War II, it has become possible to create programs that perform difficult intellectual tasks. From these programs, general tools are constructed which have applications in a wide variety of everday problems. Some of these computational milestones are listed below under “Modern History.”
Ancient History
Greek myths of Hephaestus, the blacksmith who manufactured mechanical servants, and the bronze man Talos incorporate the idea of intelligent robots. Many other myths in antiquity involve human-like artifacts. Many mechanical toys and models were actually constructed, e.g., by Archytas of Tarentum, Hero, Daedalus and other real persons.
4th century B.C.
?Aristotle invented syllogistic logic, the first formal deductive reasoning system.
13th century
?Talking heads were said to have been created, Roger Bacon and Albert the Great reputedly among the owners.
?Ramon Lull, Spanish theologian, invented machines for discovering nonmathematical truths through combinatorics.
?In 1206 A.D., Al-Jazari, an Arab inventor, designed what is believed to be the first programmable humanoid robot, a boat carrying four mechanical musicians powered by water flow.
15th century
?Invention of printing using moveable type. Gutenberg Bible printed (1456).
15th-16th century
?Clocks, the first modern measuring machines, were first produced using lathes.
16th century
?Clockmakers extended their craft to creating mechanical animals and other novelties. For example, see DaVinci’s walking lion (1515).
?Rabbi Loew of Prague is said to have invented the Golem, a clay man brought to life (1580).
17th century
?Early in the century, Descartes proposed that bodies of animals are nothing more than complex machines. Many other 17th century thinkers offered variations and elaborations of Cartesian mechanism.
?Pascal created the first mechanical digital calculating machine (1642).
?Thomas Hobbes published The Leviathan (1651), containing a mechanistic and combinatorial theory of thinking.
?Arithmetical machines devised by Sir Samuel Morland between 1662 and 1666
?Leibniz improved Pascal’s machine to do multiplication & division with a machine called the Step Reckoner (1673) and envisioned a universal calculus of reasoning by which arguments could be decided mechanically.
18th century
?The 18th century saw a profusion of mechanical toys, including the celebrated mechanical duck of Vaucanson and von Kempelen’s phony mechanical chess player, The Turk (1769). Edgar Allen Poe wrote (in the Southern Literary Messenger, April 1836) that the Turk could not be a machine because, if it were, it would not lose.
19th century
?Joseph-Marie Jacquard invented the Jacquard loom, the first programmable machine, with instructions on punched cards (1801).
?Luddites (by Marjie Bloy, PhD. Victorian Web) (led by Ned Ludd) destroyed machinery in England (1811-1816). See also What the Luddites Really Fought Against. By Richard Conniff, Smithsonian magazine (March 2011).
?Mary Shelley published the story of Frankenstein’s monster (1818). The book Frankenstein, or the Modern Prometheus available from Project Gutenberg.
?Charles Babbage & Ada Byron (Lady Lovelace) designed a programmable mechanical calculating machines, the Analytical Engine (1832). A working model was built in 2002; a short video shows it working.
?George Boole developed a binary algebra representing (some) “laws of thought,” published in The Laws of Thought (1854).
?Modern propositional logic developed by Gottlob Frege in his 1879 work Begriffsschrift and later clarified and expanded by Russell,Tarski, Godel, Church and others.
20th century – First Half
?Bertrand Russell and Alfred North Whitehead published Principia Mathematica, which revolutionaized formal logic. Russell, Ludwig Wittgenstein, and Rudolf Carnap lead philosophy into logical analysis of knowledge.
?Torres y Quevedo built his chess machine ‘Ajedrecista’, using electromagnets under the board to play the endgame rook and king against the lone king, possibly the first computer game (1912).
?Karel Capek’s play “R.U.R.” (Rossum’s Universal Robots) produced in 1921 (London opening, 1923). – First use of the word ‘robot’ in English.
?Alan Turing proposed the universal Turing machine (1936-37)
?Electro, a mechanical man, introduced by Westinghouse Electricat the World’s Fair in New York (1939), along with Sparko, a mechanical dog.
?Warren McCulloch ; Walter Pitts publish “A Logical Calculus of the Ideas Immanent in Nervous Activity” (1943), laying foundations for neural networks.
?Arturo Rosenblueth, Norbert Wiener ; Julian Bigelow coin the term “cybernetics” in a 1943 paper. Wiener’s popular book by that name published in 1948.
?Emil Post proves that production systems are a general computational mechanism (1943). See Ch.2 of Rule Based Expert Systems for the uses of production systems in AI. Post also did important work on completeness, inconsistency, and proof theory.
?George Polya published his best-selling book on thinking heuristically, How to Solve It in 1945. This book introduced the term ‘heuristic’ into modern thinking and has influenced many AI scientists.
?Vannevar Bush published As We May Think (Atlantic Monthly, July 1945) a prescient vision of the future in which computers assist humans in many activities.
?Grey Walter experimented with autonomous robots, turtles named Elsie and Elmer, at Bristol (1948-49) based on the premise that a small number of brain cells could give rise to complex behaviors.
?A.M. Turing published “Computing Machinery and Intelligence” (1950). – Introduction of Turing Test as a way of operationalizing a test of intelligent behavior. See The Turing Institute for more on Turing.
?Claude Shannon published detailed analysis of chess playing as search in “Programming a computer to play chess” (1950).
?Isaac Asimov published his three laws of robotics (1950).
Modern History
The modern history of AI begins with the development of stored-program electronic computers. For a short summary, see Genius and Tragedy at Dawn of Computer Age By ALICE RAWSTHORN, NY Times (March 25, 2012 ), a review of technology historian George Dyson’s book “Turing’s Cathedral: The Origins of the Digital Universe.”
?John McCarthy coined the term “artificial intelligence” as the topic of the Dartmouth Conference, the first conference devoted to the subject.
?Demonstration of the first running AI program, the Logic Theorist (LT) written by Allen Newell, J.C. Shaw and Herbert Simon (Carnegie Institute of Technology, now Carnegie Mellon University). See Over the holidays 50 years ago, two scientists hatched artificial intelligence.
?The General Problem Solver (GPS) demonstrated by Newell, Shaw ; Simon.
?Arthur Samuel (IBM) wrote the first game-playing program, for checkers, to achieve sufficient skill to challenge a world champion. Samuel’s machine learning programs were responsible for the high performance of the checkers player.