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Written By R. Spink


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Animal Magic

R. Spink, Frecheville, Sheffield

My Animals program for the BBC Micro is a simple example of artificial intelligence. You think of an animal and answer the questions asked by the computer until it finds an animal, which should be the one you are thinking of.

If it is not, you will be asked for the name of the animal and for a suitable question if it ever reaches to this point again. So as you can see the program learns. The more it is used, the more animals it will know.

The data can be saved on cassette and loaded when the program is run again. When the program is run for the first time it asks you for a suitable initial question. These should be of the form:

Do you have...?
Are you...?

For example: "Do you have four legs?" It will ask for an animal whether the answer is yes or no. For example, for the last question dog for yes, sparrow for no. From now on the program is learning about animals.