close this bookVolume 5: No. 07
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View the documentAgent technology

General Magic's initial public offering (IPO) was very successful. They raised the offering to 5.5M shares at $14 (rather than 4M at $13). The opening trade was $31 1/2, then dropped just a bit. John Curran , MAGICCAP Digest, 2/11/95. Bill Park.] (The company now has R&D funding for several years, even if it never sells a product. That will make it tough for competitors in electronic commerce systems.)

The UNH Cooperative Distributed Problem Solving (CDPS) research group is on WWW as . Their focus is coordination and cooperation between intelligent agents, primarily for autonomous underwater vehicles (AUVs). [Roy M. Turner (, 2/1/95.]

John McCarthy is proposing the computer arcade game Lemmings as a new "drosophila" for AI. The player must get as many lemmings as possible to a goal location, possibly sacrificing some to help the others. He makes some of them climbers, bridge builders, diggers, etc. in a world obeying partially unknown "lemming physics." [Michelle Perrie , siglunch, 2/7/95.] (Definitely a challenge for AI, and a lot of fun, but is it a dead-end career path for students? Have we yet developed any applications for chess- playing technology? What have we learned from poker or bridge? What jobs have been created?)

-- Ken