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Humanist Archives: July 3, 2022, 12:47 p.m. Humanist 36.91 - AI vs artificial intelligence

              Humanist Discussion Group, Vol. 36, No. 91.
        Department of Digital Humanities, University of Cologne
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        Date: 2022-07-03 11:43:55+00:00
        From: Willard McCarty <>
        Subject: AI vs artificial intelligence

Some help please. I am trying to determine the relative frequencies of
the terms 'artificial intelligence' and 'AI' in English of whatever kind
(British, American, Indian and so on). Two problems here. The first one
is that the language is in this respect changing quite fast. Google
Ngram Viewer goes up only to 2019. The second problem is that the
acronym 'AI' can mean other things, e.g. 'artificial insemination'. From
experiments with Google Ngrams it would appear that 'artificial
intelligence' is by far more freequent (1945-) than 'AI', but this
doesn't seem to accord with my experience these days. I would expect
that today 'AI' is dominant. I'd like to know how to test whether this
is true.

It also seems to me that the connotations of these two terms are
distinctly different. A colleague at Stanford tells me that when he
hears students talking about what they want to do with computers, they
tend much more frequently to speak of 'AI', by which they intend
commercial applications. He says they seldom talk about 'artificial
intelligence', by which he thinks they mean research in computer science.

Any ideas or suggestions?

Willard McCarty,
Professor emeritus, King's College London;
Editor, Interdisciplinary Science Reviews;  Humanist

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