Selected Publications of Marvin Minsky
- "A Generalization of Kakutani's Fixed-Point Theorem," Bachelor's Thesis in Mathematics, Harvard, 1950. This thesis was about the topology of fixed points of continuous functions on spheres, using new arguments about knots in 3-spheres. The manuscript has disappeared.
- "A Neural-Analogue Calculator Based upon a Probability Model of Reinforcement," Harvard University Psychological Laboratories, Cambridge, Massachusetts, January 8, 1952. Describes the hardware of the SNARC, the first connectionist neural network learning machine that, when "rewarded," facilitates recently-used pathways.
- "Neural Nets and the Brain Model Problem," Ph.D. dissertation in Mathematics, Princeton, 1954. Many new theories and theorems about learning in neural networks, secondary reinforcement, circulating dynamic storage and synaptic modifications.
- "Heuristic Aspects of the Artificial Intelligence Problem," MIT Lincoln Laboratory Report 34-55, December, 1956. ASTIA Doc. No. AS 236885; December, 1956. An early, ambitious paper about Artificial Intelligence, proposing a variety of ideas about heuristic programs, planning, etc.
- "Some Universal Elements For Finite Automata," in Automata Studies, C.E. Shannon and J. McCarthy (eds.), Annals of Mathematics Studies, 34, Princeton University Press, 1956.Theorems about various very small, yet still universal sets of digital logic elements.
- "Some Methods of Heuristic Programming and Artificial Intelligence," Proc. Symposium. on Mechanization of Thought Processes, vol 1. pp5-27. D.V. Blake and A.M. Uttley (eds., Natl. Physical Lab., Teddington, England, HMSO, London, 1959. Proposals for how AI research should proceed. Describes how my 1956 hand-simulated geometry machine proved Euclid's "pons asinorum" theorem..
- "Learning in random nets, Marvin Minsky and Oliver G. Selfridge," Proc. Fourth London Symposium. on Information Theory, Butterworth, Ltd., London, 1961. Among other things, observed that maximum likelihood estimates are linear threshold functions, when the input variables are independent.
- "Microscopy Apparatus," U.S. Patent 301467, issued December, 1961. The 1956 patent application for the Confocal Scanning Microscope is partially reproduced in the Scanning article.
- "A 6-symbol 6-state universal Turing machine," Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Lincoln Laboratory, 1961 15p Group report 54G-0029.
- "Recursive Unsolvability of Post's Problem of 'Tag'," Annals of Mathematics, 74, 3, Nov. 1961, pp. 437-453. This solved a problem Emil Post had posed in 1922, and leads to proving that there can exist universal computers with only 2 registers.
- "Steps Toward Artificial Intelligence," Proc. IRE, 49, 1, Jan, 1961, pp. 8-30. Reprinted in Computers and Thought, McGraw-Hill, 1963. Mapped out future research in AI with emphasis on symbolic descriptions.
- "A Selected Descriptor-Indexed Bibliography to the Literature on Artificial Intelligence," IRE Transactions on Human Factors in Electronics, HFE-2, March, 1961, pp. 39-55. Reprinted in "Computers and Thought," Ed. E.A. Feigenbaum and J. Feldman, pp. 453-524, McGraw-Hill. 1963) This separately published companion to "Steps toward Artificial Intelligence," demonstrated the range and importance of the new field of AI. It may have been the first keyword-descriptor indexed bibliography.
1962 "Size and Structure of Universal Turing Machines," Recursive Function Theory, Proc. Symposium. in Pure Mathematics, 5, American Mathematical Society, 1962, pp. 229-238. This 4-symbol 7-state system may still be the smallest known Universal Turing Machine.
- "MATHSCOPE," Part I: a proposal for a mathematical manipulation-display system. MIT, ProjectMAC, 1963. Part II was a program for visual inspection of solutions to first-order non-linear differential equations, Memo MAC-M-124, AI memo no. 62. Artificial Intelligence Project and Project MAC, 1963.
- " A LISP garbage collector algorithm using serial secondary storage," revised, Memo MAC-M-29 * Memo; AI memo no. 58. Massachusetts Institute of Technology, Project MAC, 1963.
- "Matter, Mind and Models," Proceedings of IFIP Congress 1965, I, May, 1965, pp. 45-49., Spartan Books, Wash. D.C. Reprinted in Semantic Information Processing. A short paper proposing a theory of self-knowledge and the illusion of free will.
- "Unrecognizable Sets of Numbers," (with S. Papert), JACM 31, 2, April, 1966, pp. 281-286. A precursor of our work on Perceptrons. These results were already known to Alan Cobham, who had not published them.
- "Speculations About Man and Machine" , Proc. Park City (Utah) Conference on Computers in Undergraduate Education, Wm. Viavant (ed.).
- "Theoretical Mechanisms of Synchrony," in Basic Mechanisms of the Epilepsies, Little, Brown, 1969. A variety of possible mechanisms for hypersynchrony in epilepsy.
- "Form and Content in Computer Science," (1970 ACM Turing Lecture) Journal of the Association for Computing Machinery,17, 2, April, 1970, pp. 197-215. Said to have influenced many computer scientists to try to make more ambitious and realistic theories of computational semantics.
- "Development of Facility for Visual Prosthesis," in Visual Prosthesis, Academic Press, 1971, pp. 315-319. Discussions of what must done to make a practical visual prosthetic device for implanting into blind patients.
- "A Framework for Representing Knowledge," MIT-AI Laboratory Memo 306, June, 1974. (Shorter versions in The Psychology of Computer Vision," P. Winston (Ed.), McGraw-Hill 1975, Mind Design," J. Haugeland, Ed., MIT Press, 1981, and "Cognitive Science," Collins, Allan and Edward E. Smith (eds.), Morgan-Kaufmann 1992.) A major influence in persuading AI workers and psychologists to consider representing commonsense knowledge in relatively large structures called "frames," which exemplify typical instances or cases. Frames inherit default assumptions that can be displaced when more specific information is available.
- "Automation and Artificial Intelligence," in Science, Technology, and the Modern Navy, Office of Naval Research, Arlington, Virginia, 1976. Discusses a wide variety of applications of Teleoperators and more intelligent machines to problems of the near future.
- "Plain Talk About Neurodevelopmental Epistemology," in Proceedings of the 5th Intl. Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence, Cambridge, Mass., August, 1977. This precursor of some ideas about K-lines and Pronomes in "The Society of Mind," proposes a variety of theories about how knowledge and linguistic processes might be handled in the brain."
- "Computer Science and the Representation of Knowledge" in The Computer Age: A Twenty-Year View, Michael Dertouzos and Joel Moses, MIT Press, 1979, pp 392-421. A discussion of the importance of commonsense knowledge.
- "K-lines, a theory of memory," Cognitive Science, 4, pp117-133, 1980 A theory of how structured hierarchies of knowledge may be represented in terms of networks that activate "partial brain states".
- "Telepresence," OMNI magazine, May 1980. How the development of teleoperators would have immense benefits in the areas of Energy, Productivity, and Space Exploration.
- "Jokes and their Relation to the Cognitive Unconscious." Al Memo 603, MIT-AI Lab., November, 1980. In "Cognitive Constraints on Communication," Vaina and Hintikka (eds.) Reidel, 1981 Relates Freud's theory of unconscious censors to the AI problems of logical exceptions and cancellations of variable bindings.
- "Music, Mind, and Meaning, " Computer Music Journal,5,3, 1981. Reprinted in "Machine Models of Music," (ed.Stephan Schwanauer and David Levitt) MIT Press, 1993, ISBN 0-262-19319-1 Explains the appeal of the varied rstructures in classical music on the basis of a cognitive hierarchy of difference detecting agencies. AI memo ; 616
- "Cellular Vacuum," International Journal of Theoretical Physics, Vol. 21, Nos. 6/8, 1982.
- "Why People Think Computers Can't," The AI Magazine, vol. 3, no. 4, Fall, 1982. Reprinted in Technology Review, Nov./Dec., 1983 and in The Computer Culture, Denis P. Donnelly, (Ed.), Associated University Presses, Cranbury NJ, 1985.
- "Communication with Alien Intelligence," Extraterrestrial: Science and Alien Intelligence, Edward Regis, Jr., (Ed.), Cambridge University Press, 1984. Reprinted in Byte, April, 1985. Proposes a new philosophical theory, called the "sparseness hypothesis," about why it is possible to have apriori mathematical knowledge.
- "Foreword" to K. Eric Drexler, "Engines of Creation." Anchor Press, Doubleday, 1986
- "Introduction," to LogoWorks, (Cynthia Solomon, Margaret Minsky, Brian Harvey, Eds.) McGraw-Hill 1986
- "Emotions and the Society of Mind," in Emotions and Psychopathology, Manfred Clynes and Jack Panksepp, eds., Plenum Press, N.Y., 1988
- "Logical vs. Analogical or Symbolic vs. Connectionist or Neat vs. Scruffy," and "Excerpts from The Society of Mind," in Artificial Intelligence at MIT., Expanding Frontiers, Patrick H. Winston (Ed.), Vol 1, MIT Press, 1990. Reprinted in AI Magazine, 1991
- "NASA Held Hostage," Ad Astra, Vol. 2, no. 6, June 1990. This article complains that NASA has been paralyzed by the obsession that the public will support only manned space programs, and this has vastly increased the expense of space exploration. In particular, for the proposed space station, the development and use of telepresence -- manning the station remotely from Earth -- would reduce the cost by an order of magnitude. Since around 1975 I have lobbied on this subject to many NASA-related committees, usually with positive reactions. However, this was almost always ignored by higher level administrators. One Head of that agency did agree enthusiastically, but soon after that lost his job.
- "Proposal for a Remotely Manned Space Station." April 1, 1990. MIT AILAB
- "A Response to Four Reviews of The Society of Mind," Artificial Intelligence, April 1991, Vol. 48, pp. 371-396.
- "A Conversation with Marvin Minsky," (with Otto Laske) AI Magazine, Vol. 14, No. 3, Fall 1992, pp. 31-45. and in "Understanding Music with AI", Eds.Mira Balaban, Kemal Ebcioglu, and Otto E. Laske, MIT Press. ISBN 0-262-52170-9.
- Review of "Allen Newell, Unified Theories of Cognition," Artificial Intelligence, 59 (1993), pp. 343-354.
- "The Future Merging of Science, Art, and Psychology," Applied Artificial Intelligence, vol. 7, 1993.
- "Negative Expertise," International Journal of Expert Systems, 1994, Vol. 7, No. 1, pp. 13-19.
"Virtual Molecular Reality," in Prospects in Nanotechnology: Toward Molecular manufacturing, (eds. Markus Krumenacker & James Lewis) Wiley, 1995 ISBN 0-471-30914-1