Artificial intelligence was founded as an academic discipline in 1956. The field went through multiple cycles of optimism followed by disappointment and loss of funding. After 2012, deep learning surpassed all previous AI techniques, leading to a vast increase in funding and interest.
The general problem of simulating (or creating) intelligence has been broken down into sub-problems. These consist of particular traits or capabilities that researchers expect an intelligent system to display. The traits described below have received the most attention and cover the scope of AI research.[a]
Early researchers developed algorithms that imitated step-by-step reasoning that humans use when they solve puzzles or make logical deductions. By the late 1980s and 1990s, methods were developed for dealing with uncertain or incomplete information, employing concepts from probability and economics.
Many of these algorithms are insufficient for solving large reasoning problems because they experience a "combinatorial explosion": they became exponentially slower as the problems grew larger. Even humans rarely use the step-by-step deduction that early AI research could model. They solve most of their problems using fast, intuitive judgments. Accurate and efficient reasoning is an unsolved problem.