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Does anyone remember the name of that program on the Burroughs machine
that would parse natural language queries and attempt to answer them
from a database of facts? (Chris, is this the QUEST program you
mentioned in an earlier message?) It was kind of rudimentary AI-like
at the time. I remember being quite impressed with the program
(although the half-duplex nature of the Burroughs machine itself always
struck me as REALLY odd). I remember you could ask it where to get
something to eat in Newark and it would tell you about Gino's
(recently moved to Main Street at the time) and other places.
(Speaking of which, I still remember eating gigantic turkey subs from
Leonardo's deli many an evening in Willard Hall! The closest we get
to subs out here in Salt Lake City is "subway" and no cheese steaks
although we can finally get Tastykakes by mail order now.)
At one point I got to be friends with the guy in the CC who wrote the
program (or perhaps he was just maintaining it at the time I met him).
It was written in Algol and he was extolling the virtues of Algol to me
(I had barely been introduced to compiled languages at the time). Does
anyone happen to remember this guy's name? He had a DELTA attitude
(i.e. irreverance of authority :), but he was never involved in DELTA
per se. There seems to have been a much smaller crowd of people who
got involved through the Center, although it seems that the Center
didn't encourage such "extracurricular" computing.