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Hi, Not to go too much off topic in the pattern recognition thread, I decided to start a new tread from Timkin''s idea. Basically, couldn''t we start with some "sticky thread" where people could list books on AI they read and appreciated or something? A global GameDev Bookshelf would add too much unrelated informations, for a "per forum" bookshelf would be better in my opinion. Cheers Eric

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So rather than a review it''s more a ''This book is good for xxx''?
Would you consider it being any book even if it''s not directly related to AI?
My ''Recon Advanced Rules'' and "Combat Leader''s Field Guide'' get referenced quite a bit.

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I''ll play:

Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach (2nd Edition) by Stuart J. Russell, Peter Norvig - excellent fundamentals of AI book that everyone should read

Machine Learning by Tom Mitchell - great introduction to machine learning with easy to follow text and good references.

Pattern Classification (2nd Edition) by Richard O. Duda, Peter E. Hart, David G. Stork - a little more technical than Mitchell''s but cover''s more area.

Creation : Life and How to Make It by Steve Grand - nothing more inspirational to me, except maybe

Blondie24: Playing at the Edge of AI by David Fogel - these two (Blondie24 and Creation) are truly inspirational in ALife

Genetic Programming: On the Programming of Computers by Means of Natural Selection (Complex Adaptive Systems) by John R. Koza

Evolutionary Computation 1: Basic Algorithms and Operators and Evolutionary Computation 2: Advanced Algorithms and Operators by Thomas Baeck

AI Techniques for Game Programming by Mat Buckland - plus the original papers on NEAT from Ken Stanley''s lab

AI Game Programming Wisdom 1 and 2

various Dr. Seuss titles


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My post was only a continuation of what was going on in the Pattern Recognition thread.

As for the AI books here, the list is quite small, and most of them are books on "ai in general". Please note that not even 50% of the books named by kirkd are featured in the books section...

The book Timkin mentionned:

"Pattern Classification (2nd Ed)"
by Richard O. Duda, Peter E. Hart and David G. Stork
Wiley Interscience
ISBN: 0-471-05669-3

Seems to be a very specialized book that doesn''t only apply to GameDev, which is why I understand it''s not in the ressources and wouldn''t fit there either.

If I had to buy a book anyway, I''d most likely trust more a suggestion from Timkin than from a random GameDev reader that might or might not know much about what he''s talking about.


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It''s interesting that this thread got started... I sat down yesterday and gave serious thought to the idea of starting a sticky thread in the AI forum called the ''Bookshelf''. I decided against it because I felt it was counter to the Books & Software section of the site. However, after reading some of the thoughts posted here and thinking a little more about it, I do believe it could be of use and in fact, could lead to more people visiting that area of the website. My reasoning...

Maintaining a list of books grouped by specialised topics is useful for someone wanting to find a book that covers a certain aspect of AI. While the number of texts dedicated to game AI are growing each quarter, they are still generally rehashing the same techniques (with a few notable exceptions, like Mat''s and Alex''s books) or techniques well known to members of this forum. Specialised AI books offer more expert insight into a problem than the generalised game AI texts.

Now, the current Books & Software section provides a limited number of reviews on books in various fields. Sure, we could work hard at expanding the number of reviews... but ultimately, how many people are going to take the time to rate a book and put down some words. I think a better idea is to link between the ''Bookshelf'' and specific reviews, where they exist. This will lead people from the bookshelf to the review section and might encourage them to review books themselves.

Furthermore, most people don''t look at the top directory bar in the forums and follow the links there. Having a sticky thread within the forum is going to attract their attention more (IMO). Linking from there in an obvious manner to the Books & Software pages will lead them to a part of the site they probably would not normally visit.

Finally, the test of quality of any book is, I beleive, the amount of use it sees. Having people who are actively working on AI problems - both in games and in commercial/research environments - indicate which books they actually use is, IMHO, a very valuable resource for someone looking for a book on a specific topic that is likely to be useful for them. I don''t beleive that people generally trust anonymous reviews.

With this in mind, I''m going to raise the idea of a forum bookshelf with the staff and moderators to get a wider opinion.



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