Jason Marshall jason@george.localnet
Thu, 29 Jun 2000 19:13:22 -0700 (PDT)

> Jason Marshall wrote:
> To Jason Marshall
> You offer a accurate definition of "brute force".  
> We have had some problems which have been amenable 
> to no other method.  On the other hand we have 
> found ways logically to keep us from going down 
> "wasted" paths.  The fact that something produces 
> the same result as brute force does not mean its 
> application.  What I am describing is what occurs 
> in every AI-based logic engine, an exhaustive 
> true/false testing process.  No more, no less.

I still suspect we're talking past each other.  Perhaps
we don't have the same definition of 'exhaustive'. 
When I or most of my peers say/think exhaustive, we 
mean 'look under EVERY rock', not just 'look under all
the probable rocks'.  When you start introducing 
algorithms that trim your search space, you're doing
a directed search.  Unless it is provably impossible 
for a particular direction to contain a successful 'hit',
then you're using a heuristic, and no longer doing an
exhaustive search.  

Any commentary regarding the rest of your comments
hinges on the formal definitions, so I'll hold off
on any commentary.

> I don't want to make light of academic pursuits nor 
> those in pursuit.  I have been a member of the ACM 
> since 1962 and a participant in computer-related 
> matters in the IEEE since before it had formed the 
> Computer Society.  For most of that time what was 
> published under those societies meant absolutely 
> zip to me.  That did not keep from understanding 
> the importance of continuing a publishing outlet 
> that from time to time did create a practical 
> communication link with the "outside" world.

I can assure you I am not by any means an academic.