Wired magazine has a feature article on the life, work and tragic deaths of two of the leading lights of Artificial Intelligence: Chris McKinstry and Push Singh.
Singh was a young researcher at MIT’s AI lab while McKinstry was considered a maverick and most of his AI work was conducted independently.
Both had a significant impact on the field as personalities and took a similar line in trying to make AI more focused on dealing with ‘common sense’ knowledge, rather than applying neural networks to complex pattern-recognition and transformation tasks as was more common at the time.
Interestingly, it seems from the Wired article that their ideas are experiencing something of a renaissance.
Tragically, both took their own lives. We covered the sad event of McKinstry’s death back in 2006, and the Wired article discusses the somewhat less clear circumstances surrounding the death of Singh.
Link to Wired article ‘Two AI Pioneers. Two Bizarre Suicides’.