Cover: Machine-aided heuristic programming : a paradigm for knowledge engineering

Machine-aided heuristic programming : a paradigm for knowledge engineering

Published 1979

by David J. Mostow, Frederick Hayes-Roth

Purchase Print Copy

 Format Price
Add to Cart Paperback59 pages $23.00

Machine-aided heuristic programming is advocated as a paradigm for incorporating domain knowledge in intelligent task performance programs. In this paradigm, a system interactively assimilates a natural language description of a task, advice on how to perform it, and definitions of the domain concepts. The system translates this input into an internal representation, operationalizes the assimilated knowledge, integrates different pieces of advice, and applies them to performance of the task. Some desiderata for the internal knowledge representation are proposed and a typed applicative LISP-like language is described. Operationalization is defined in terms of transforming well-defined but noneffective expressions into effectively executable ones. A Hearsay-II blackboard-like mechanism for integrating different pieces of advice is described. Several techniques for performing these processes mechanically are presented and applied to the card game Hearts. A system to accept and use Hearts advice is currently being implemented.

This report is part of the RAND note series. The note was a product of RAND from 1979 to 1993 that reported other outputs of sponsored research for general distribution.

This document and trademark(s) contained herein are protected by law. This representation of RAND intellectual property is provided for noncommercial use only. Unauthorized posting of this publication online is prohibited; linking directly to this product page is encouraged. Permission is required from RAND to reproduce, or reuse in another form, any of its research documents for commercial purposes. For information on reprint and reuse permissions, please visit

RAND is a nonprofit institution that helps improve policy and decisionmaking through research and analysis. RAND's publications do not necessarily reflect the opinions of its research clients and sponsors.