by Jeannette Lawrence
5th edition, January, 1993 ISBN# 1-883157-00-5
Copyright 1988-1998 California Scientific, Nevada City, CA 95959. All rights reserved.
This book introduces you to neural networks, expert systems, and fuzzy systems. This work represents six years of research and experience in the field of artificial intelligence, particularly neural networks.
Why Read this Book?
Many researchers, in an attempt to assemble a detailed working model of the mind, have contributed to the field of neural network research. The material available today reflects the complexity of their research, and consequently is not easy to understand without a degree in mathematics, biology, or computer science. Expert systems, sometimes glamorized as an incredibly intelligent and complex technology, are actually not so difficult to understand. However, easy-to-read introductory material on expert systems is also surprisingly scarce.
We try to alleviate some of the complexity surrounding neural networks and expert systems by simplifying highly technical explanations and relating them to common knowledge whenever possible. We use consistent terminology based on biology, and we include a complete glossary of terms. We use a neural network drawing convention which is a conglomerate of those used by several of the foremost researchers.
This book provides background on the subjects of fuzzy logic, computer science, artificial neural network theory, and biology. You don't have to read about them in order to make use of neural networks or experts systems, but they're available if you're interested. You will learn to identify when and why these two forms of computer intelligence obtain the best results. You may find that a combination of technologies provides much more problem solving power than any one alone. Whether you're curious about how the mind operates, how an expert system works, or how to apply these new technologies, this book is designed to answer your questions in a simple, straightforward manner. We introduce new terminology only as needed, explain it thoroughly, use simple diagrams generously, and provide several appendices of supplemental information. We provide detailed examples of several working neural network applications as well as rules of thumb for the designer. This will give you a good background for working with neural networks and expert systems.
"Introduction to Neural Networks (the book included with the program) could and should be used for a college-level introductory course on neural networks. It is clear, concise and does not talk down to the reader."
- James G. Yearwood, Personal Computing Magazine