Chapter 19 Retrospect and Prospect

Computation is the fire in our modern-day caves. By 2056, the computational revolution will be recognised as a transformation as significant as the industrial revolution. The evolution and widespread diffusion of computation and its analytical fruits will have major impacts on socioeconomics, science and culture.

– Eric Horvitz [2006]

This chapter starts with the state-of-the-art in deploying AI for applications, then looks at the big picture in terms of the agent design space, and speculates on the future of AI. By placing many of the representations covered in the agent design space, the relationships among them become more apparent. This helps us to see where the frontier of AI research lies and provides a sense of the evolution of the field. As Horvitz points out above, computation is changing the world; its beneficial and harmful effects will impact us all.