A Summary of Previous Grand Challenge Proposals for Cognitive Systems
Samuel Bayer, The MITRE Corporation
Laurie Damianos, The MITRE Corporation
Lynette Hirschman, The MITRE Corporation
Gary Strong, The MITRE Corporation
The notion of a Grand Challenge (GC) in computational cognition is not new. It has been addressed both specifically and in the context of Grand Challenges in computing as a whole. One well-known example, DARPA's Autonomous Vehicle Grand Challenge (AVGC), has captured the imagination of the media and the public. The AVGC is much more than a compelling research goal or a way to make DARPA's work relevant to the average layperson; it is a measurable test which can tell us where to focus our work and how much we have accomplished. The AVGC has "raised the bar" for what it means for a Grand Challenge to set the agenda for a field of research.
There have been previous efforts to develop Grand Challenges for computer science, but none of these efforts has addressed directly the needs of DARPA IPTO, in particular, demonstrations of cognitive capabilities with a dimension in learning.
To gain insight into why no proposal has yet to become an IPTO Grand Challenge, we performed a historical review and analysis of several sources of GCs in cognitive systems and artificial intelligence (Appendix B). This document summarizes and characterizes these previous Grand Challenge explorations and evaluates categories of proposals against the DARPA IPTO criteria for selecting a GC.
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