What is the Most Common Artificial Intelligence Language?

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  • Written By: Lakshmi Sandhana
  • Edited By: PJP Schroeder
  • Last Modified Date: 08 October 2018
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The most common artificial intelligence language is Lisp, and it is still in use today. It's also one of the oldest artificial intelligence languages. John McCarthy developed it in the late 1950s.

Lisp is an abbreviation of "LISt Processing." This artificial intelligence language uses lists to represent data structures. It is considered to be the first functional programming language. There are quite a number of built-in functions that can be used to manipulate lists, making the language extremely flexible. Programmers have total control over the syntax of the language, which can be changed to suit their purposes.

This is possible because the source code is made up of lists. Programmers can manipulate the source code as data structures, allowing them to create a new syntax, or extend the language to do what is necessary. It's an excellent language for artificial intelligence (AI) programming because it is possible to easily write pattern matchers that correspond to list structures.

One of the other factors that make Lisp a useful artificial intelligence language is its ability to support symbolic representations. It's possible to easily associate symbols with data; for instance, it is possible to associate the symbol "sky" with the color "blue." It is also possible to easily replace older data structures with newer ones, and this deallocation facility is called garbage collection.


An extremely dynamic artificial intelligence language, it's possible to have changes take effect in Lisp instantly without any recompiling. It does not possess any core program, and all the work is done through functions compositions and recursion. Programmers can access any function at the input prompt.

A widely popular artificial intelligence language, Lisp has spawned off a huge number of dialects and Lisp systems, such as Scheme, Interlisp, and FranzLisp. In an effort to create a standard for the language, a number of Lisp programmers put together the best features from the existing dialects to create a new language called Common Lisp. This happened in 1981, and since then, Common Lisp has evolved to become an extremely robust, general-purpose AI programming language.

Widely used for programming computer games, robots, and pattern recognition problems, Lisp is considered to be a classic AI programming language that has stood the test of time. Prolog is another programming language developed in the early 1970s that has gained popularity in AI. It has a more mathematical basis based on predicate calculus. It is considered to be an important logic programming language and is used in AI for natural language processing and dealing with expert systems.


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