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Paradigms of Artificial Intelligence Programming by Peter Norvig

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Chapter 15

Symbolic Mathematics with Canonical Forms

Anything simple always interests me.

—David Hockney

Chapter 8 started with high hopes: to take an existing pattern matcher, copy down some mathematical identities out of a reference book, and come up with a usable symbolic algebra system. The resulting system was usable for some purposes, and it showed that the technique of rule-based translation is a powerful one. However, the problems of section 8.5 show that not everything can be done easily and efficiently within the rule-based pattern matching framework.

There are important mathematical transformations that are difficult to express in the rule-based approach. For example, dividing two polynomials to obtain a quotient and remainder is a task ...

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