Explaining how a (Mind) program works

Discussion in 'Java' started by Arthur T. Murray, Sep 26, 2003.

  1. "Bill Modlin" <> wrote on Fri, 26 Sep 2003:
    <snip>
    >>> If I wanted to explain how one of my programs worked
    >>> I would not give someone a print out of the code.
    >>> First I would explain it in higher level (folk psychology?)
    >>> terms and then explain how I embodied these ideas in actual code.


    >> I'm not sure why - especially if the person you're explaining it to
    >> is a programmer and knows the language.

    BM:
    > For the same reason that all good programs are liberally annotated
    > with comments. Programming languages are for controlling computers,
    > not for communicating with people. It is laborious and error prone
    > to attempt to discover the purpose of an algorithm implemented by
    > a bit of code just by inspecting that code.

    ATM:
    Nevertheless the original source code has to be made available, e.g.
    http://www.scn.org/~mentifex/jsaimind.html -- AI Mind in JavaScript;
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/mind4th.html -- Mind.Forth PD AI.

    BM:
    > This is true even for the original author of the code.
    > Code that seemed crystal clear and obvious at the time
    > you wrote it is often indecipherable when a year later
    > you are called upon to adjust or fix it in some fashion.


    ATM:
    The factoring of Forth and the hierarchy of objects help here,
    plus liberal comments and statements at the end of each Mind-
    Module explaining to what other Module program-flow returns:
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/progman.html -- Modules.

    BM:
    > Of course, the extensional function of each line of code is obvious
    > to anyone who knows the language. There is no mystery in a line of
    > code that says to increment the value of some variable by two:
    > it says exactly what is to happen. [...]


    > Literal quoting of code is sometimes a useful adjunct to understanding
    > of function. We all generally like to have actual source to work with.


    Yes, and so the AI4U (AI For Your) textbook of artificial intelligence at
    http://search.barnesandnoble.com/bookSearch/isbnInquiry.asp?ISBN=0595259227
    contains a full source-code listing of the AI Mind-1.1 in MSIE JavaScript.
    On September 24, 2003, a rather mean-spirited reviewer at B&N, hiding
    behind anonymity, complained that "This book is not really a textbook
    because it explains nothing. It rather is a collection of 'modules'
    which the author expects the reader to implement" -- without pointing out
    that the AI Mind modules are already implemented at the end of the book.

    Now this author is indeed trying to get Minds coded in XYZ languages:
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/cpp.html -- C++ with new AI code;
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/java.html -- see Mind.JAVA #1 & #2;
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/lisp.html -- Lisp AI Weblog;
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/perl.html -- first Perl module;
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/prolog.html -- Prolog AI Weblog;
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/python.html -- Python AI Weblog;
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/ruby.html -- Ruby AI Blog (OO AI);
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/scheme.html -- Scheme AI Weblog;
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/vb.html -- see "Mind.VB #001" link.

    BM:
    > But it is only an adjunct: the necessary ingredient for understanding
    > of non-trivial function is explanation of the principles of operation
    > in human-interpretable language.


    ATM:
    I have created every conceivable instrument of explaining the AI Mind.
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/acm.html is Steps to DIY AI.
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/standard.html -- AI Standards.
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/variable.html -- AI Variables.

    BM:
    > Given the code one may never understand what it is for.


    ATM:
    Recently I have been meeting in person with an incognito engineer
    who has volunteered to attempt to translate (port) Mind.Forth into
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/aicppsrc.html AI C++ Source Code.

    BM:
    > Given an understandable explanation of just what is to be done


    ATM:
    Nothing beats having a one-on-one interactive discussion of
    what is to be done to code AI and how to do it. That optimal
    option is why I have a dreamworld fantasy of hiring out to CS
    departments and AI labs to have my primitive but AI-coding
    brain picked clean and dry of any contribution I make to AI.

    > and how to do it, any programmer can produce new code
    > for a function readily enough: having an actual worked out
    > version to go by is a dispensable luxury. [...]


    A.T. Murray
    --
    http://mentifex.virtualentity.com/java.html -- Java AI Mind Weblog
    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/0595654371/ -- AI Textbook;
    http://www.sl4.org/archive/0205/3829.html -- Goertzel on Mentifex;
    http://doi.acm.org/10.1145/307824.307853 -- ACM SIGPLAN Mind.Forth
     
    Arthur T. Murray, Sep 26, 2003
    #1
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  2. Go away, Arthur.

    Posting the same links over and over again isn't "Mind".

    It's "mindless".

    xanthian.



    --
    Posted via Mailgate.ORG Server - http://www.Mailgate.ORG
     
    Kent Paul Dolan, Sep 27, 2003
    #2
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