Abstract: The history of artificial intelligence is one that predates the computer. The concept of the existence of intelligence beyond the scope of humanity is something which has fueled efforts for much of human existence, from Heron's automatons to Maharl of Prague's Golem. In modern times, the advent of modern computing have turned these fables and aspirations into a reality, with the 1940s and 1950s giving birth to the first signs of wide-scale, computer-based intelligences at small degrees. As the 20th century progressed, and the era of digital computers accelerated in progress, the potential for intelligence increased dramatically. With access to massive databases of both formalized knowledge and user-created content via the internet, more processing power to apply to both thinking and learning, and increasing storage abilities, the field of artificial intelligence is producing smarter systems at a steady rate.
McCorduck, Pamela. Machines Who Think: A Personal Inquiry into the History and Prospects of Artificial Intelligence. San Francisco: W.H. Freeman, 1979. Print.