Researcher describes method to allow AI systems to argue

from the Open-the-pod-bay-doors,-HAL dept.
Ronald P. Loui, Ph.D., an associate professor of computer science at Washington University in St. Louis, has described a method for using artificial intelligence that incorporates the ability to argue into computer programs. His work is initially focused on legal arguments.

Louiís article, "Logical Models of Argument," consolidates research results from the mid-80s to the present. It appears in the current ACM Computing Surveys.
According to a press release on Loui's work, A.I argument systems permit a new kind of reasoning to be embedded in complex programs. He says the reasoning is much more natural, more human, more social, even more fair. His proposal for A.I. argumentation is based on defeasible reasoning — which recognizes that a rule supporting a conclusion can be defeated. The conclusion is what A.I. specialists call an argument instead of a proof. Defeasible reasoning draws upon patterns of reasoning outside of mathematical logic, such as ones found in law, political science, rhetoric and ethics. Defeasible reasoning is based on rules that donít always hold if there are good reasons for an exception. It also permits rules to be more or less relevant to a situation. In this sense it is like analogy: One analogy might be good, but a different one might be better.

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