Monday, June 11, 2007

Animal Project: Progress Report

I am hard at work converting Animal's original C++ code to C#. It is slow going. Animal has about 150 classes. There is a separate class for each type of sensors, effectors and chess pieces. Take a look at the original design to get an idea of what's involved. Since I am new to C#, I am learning new things as I go and I make a lot of mistakes along the way. Fortunately, the Microsoft XNA Game Studio Express environment is nice because it catches a lot of errors automatically. One of the other nice things about it is that coding the sprite graphics is now pretty much painless.

I hope to be done with the conversion by this coming Sunday (June 16). That should give me about two weeks to play around with Animal's brain. That's going to be the fun part. If all works according to plan, by the first week of July, Animal will be learning chess more or less like a human being. That will be a first in the history of artificial intelligence. From my standpoint, true AI will have finally arrived in the world. More to come.

PS. The design for Animal's brain may seem like it's gonna need a lot of coding but it's really not all that complicated. Each layer is just an array of specialized but identical neurons. Once the code is written for one class of cell, it is used by all the cells of the same class.

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