Good Old IF

There’s a couple of comparisons between interactive fiction and artificial intelligence, and much like the original artificial intelligence has been superseded and is now referred to as “good old fashioned AI” I wonder if soon that’s how we will refer to the original Interactive Fiction?

As the term IF continues to broaden then the original IF style (essentially a text adventure, white text on black screen) could be seen and referred to as “good old fashioned IF.”

Just a thought.

I don’t necessarily think that the traditional AI has been superseded. It’s true that NN based AI has excelled at recognition, but that’s about all it does well.

The current state of AI is sorely lacking in;

  • reasoning
  • knowledge representation
  • flexibility & scaling

By traditional AI, i refer to symbolic systems. It’s true that these did not solve those problems either, but that does not necessarily make them inferior to statistical systems.

I personally believe the way to strong AI is via a symbolic approach. But the problem with most symbolic attempts so far is that they fall into to trap of trying to formulate everything in terms of either first order logic or some rigid, logic based system. Instead they should focus on using symbols to build patterns and transformations of patterns.

my thoughts, at least.

All probably true. I have no details or facts, i’m just making a light hearted observation really. :slight_smile:

I do know that the AI that I have an interest in, purely from a vintage computer perspective, is the 1950s-60s with McCarthy and Minsky etc and this is referred to as “good old fashioned AI” which makes me wonder if the same could soon be said of IF. When I personally think of IF I still think “text adventure”, white text on a black screen etc, but I know the term is getting broader.

Yes, and that means retroactively, too.

By which I mean: I have a long history with parser IF, Inform, and the IF community that started on Usenet (RAIF) in the 90s. Most of which started as Infocom fandom. So to me, that’s “good old fashioned IF”.

But that isn’t everybody, right? There are plenty of IF authors, and players, who came in through different angles. Game-books, Lucas/Sierra point-and-clicks, literary hypertext… There are authors for whom “old-fashioned” means their first Twine game.