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AI-Based Problem Solving Chapter in the Book

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To Mr.Herb(the writer of the Chapter 10),
I have had a look in the chapter 10 that I downloaded and I found out that there are four searching techniques covered in the chapter...
I have skimmed through the Least-cost serach and I doubted that that search acts the same way as the best-first search, in which the cost is f(x) = g(x) i.e., the actual distance between the current state to the goal...
Does the Least-cost in your book mean the "Best-first" search in general AI terminology?
And also the Hill-Climbing Search in your book seems representing the Heuristic Search in general? So the cost is f(x) = h(x)....
Is A* search intentionally left out in the book? Since it is one of the famous searching techniques in AI, isn't it supposed to be fulfil the AI topic in the book, with the searching algorithm associated with the cost f(x) = g(x) + h(x)....
Just a suggestion...
Ko Ko Naing
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One of my questions about the AI chapter in the book is left unanswered by the authors... Can anyone help me?
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Ko Ko:
In my chapter, the Least-Cost search is, like Hill Climbing, a heuristic search. As I explain in the chapter, it does not necessarily find the best route between two nodes, it just uses a heuristic that tries to minimize the cost of moving from one node to the next.
Regarding your A * suggestion: AI is a very large topic -- far too big to cover in one chapter. In the AI chapter, I chose to include examples that I thought were interesting, without being too large or difficult to understand. Perhaps you would have chosen a different set, but these are the ones that I chose.
As with all the chapters in the book, the point of the AI chapter is to show off the power of Java. In this case, how Java can easily handle AI-based programming, which relies heavily on recursion and stacks. The chapter makes no attempt to present an exhaustive discussion of AI. To do so would fill an entire book!
BTW: Thanks for your thoughts and suggestions. They are appreciated. You have obviously spent time thinking about James' and my book. This is the greatest complement that you can give an author!
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