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Artificial intelligence research has produced few practical results in most of its branches. However, "expert systems" in limited fields of expertise are potentially practical and cost-effective tools in many fields of exploration geophysics. Recent breakthroughs, such as writing expert systems in languages less exotic than Lisp, have made it possible to install a practical expert system on even the smallest computer. A recently published expert system written in Forth compiles a rule base into very compact code, and then uses it to reach decisions based on data supplied by the user. Such a system makes it possible for a small computer to be the geophysicist's advisor on many different subjects, because one expert system can use any number of rule bases. The expert system then becomes a practical tool for standardizing the decision-making process, even in comparatively trivial areas.
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