General Problem Solver (GPS)

GPS (Newell, Shaw, Simon) was an attempt to construct a general problem solving mechanism that could solve problems in a new area given domain-specific knowledge about that area.

GPS is a generalized state-space search mechanism. It has the following components:

  1. A set of states and operators that change states. Specification of start and goal states.

  2. A procedure for identifying differences between states.

  3. A table of connections that connects observed differences with operators that may be relevant for reducing those differences.

GPS works by determining the difference between the current state and the goal state and selecting operators relevant to reducing that difference. Hopefully this will give direction to the search and make it more efficient than a blind state-space search.

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