Current research in information processing deals with programs that enable a computer to understand written or spoken information and to produce summaries, answer specific questions, or redistribute information to users interested in specific areas of this information. Essential to such programs is the ability of the system to generate grammatically correct sentences and to establish linkages between words, ideas, and associations with other ideas. Research has shown that whereas the logic of language structure_its syntax_submits to programming, the problem of meaning, or semantics, lies far deeper, in the direction of true AI.
Many scientists remain doubtful that true AI can ever be developed. The operation of the human mind is still little understood, and computer design may remain essentially incapable of analogously duplicating those unknown, complex processes. Various routes are being used in the effort to reach the goal of true AI. One approach is to apply the concept of parallel processing_interlinked and concurrent computer operations. Another is to create networks of experimental computer chips, called silicon neurons, that mimic data_processing functions of brain cells. Using analog technology, the transistors in these chips emulate nerve_cell membranes in order to operate at the speed of neurons.