Copyright 1993, 1994, 1995 by Carol E. Brown and Daniel E. O'Leary
All rights reserved, reproduced by special permission.

Table of Contents

I. What is Artificial Intelligence (AI)?

Artificial intelligence can be viewed from a variety of perspectives.

II. What are Expert Systems (ES)?

Definitions of expert systems vary. Some definitions are based on function. Some definitions are based on structure. Some definitions have both functional and structural components. Many early definitions assume rule-based reasoning.

Functional Components

What the system does (rather than how)

"... a computer program that behaves like a human expert in some useful ways." [Winston & Prendergast, 1984, p.6]

Structural Components

How the system functions

III. How do People Reason?

IV. How do Computers Reason?

Computer models are based on our models of human reasoning

IV-1. Frames

IV-2. Rule Based Reasoning

Currently, the most common form of expert system

Structure of a Rule-based Expert System

IV-2a. Knowledge Engineering

the discipline of building expert systems

The Role of the Knowledge Engineer

IV-3. Case-Based Reasoning

The Case-based Reasoning Process

IV-4. Neural Networks

(artificial neural networks and connectionist models)

V. Advantages and Disadvantages

V-1. Advantages of Expert Systems

V-2. Disadvantages of Rule-Based Expert Systems

VI. Additional Sources of Information

VI-1. Additional Sources on World Wide Web

VI-2. Recent Books of Readings

VI-3. References Used for Definitions

Introduction to Artificial Intelligence and Expert Systems
Copyright 1993, 1994, 1995 by Carol E. Brown, Oregon State University, ( and Dan E. O'Leary, University of Southern California, (
All rights reserved, Reproduced by special permission. Photocopy Permission
Page last updated December 17, 1994