You are here



Edited by Thomas H. Pierce and
Bruce A. Hohne
Reviewed by Harry E. Pence

Note: This article was scanned using OCR from the Spring 1995 CCCE Newsletter. Please contact us if you identify any OCR errors.
After many years of steady progress, practical applications of artificial intelligence techniques in Chemistry now seem to be burgeoning. Chemistry is said to be an ideal field for the application of artificial intelligence and expert systems, because there are many situations where decisions are made on the basis of past experience or a set of rules that has been empirically derived. Expert systems catalog these rules in a form that is accessible to a computer, then use this inventory of rules to make decisions.
This book consists of papers presented at a symposium held at the American Chemical Society Meeting at Chicago, Dlinois in September of 1985. Like most of the volumes in this ACS series, the ar tides were submitted as camera-ready copy. The individual papers cross reference each other more than usual and the type is generally quite readable. The index provided seems quite adequate, and each paper includes a bibliography for further reading.
The various papers do a fine job of representing the diversity of effort in this field. The discussion ncludes not only those few programs that are already available commercially, but also many different types of software that are in various stages of development. Concern has been expressed about the large amounts of programming time required to bring a new expert system to market, and so the reports on the use of rulemaking systems to decrease development time may be particularly significant. The use of a rule-maker simplifies the development process both by decreasing the time required and also by decreasing the complexity of the programming process. These systems are already playing an important role in AI development, and they will probably become more prominent as they become more available and better known.
This book will be of primary interest to those who are either currently engaged in chemical AI research or are planning to do so in the near future; however, as more of these systems become commercially available, it is increasingly important for chemistry instructors to be aware of the capabilities of this new technique. Those who are interested in maintaining contact with progress in this field may well find this to be a solid way of doing so.
*Chemistry Department SUNY Oneonta, Oneonta, NY 13820


03/15/95 to 03/19/95