Artificial Intelligence

NB This is a living document and will be updated, augmented, and improved during the semester.

Practical Information

  1. It is your responsibility to do the exercises you need to do to understand the subject and gain experience.
  2. There are some compulsory assignments, but they do not cover the complete material that you will need to study.
  3. Attendance is compulsory for most (read all) sessions in the second half of the semester (exact date TBA). See under compulsory assignments.
  4. Feedback is provided in class upon demonstration of own work and solutions. This includes approval of coursework.
  5. The module emphasises a broad and relational understanding, consolidating theory, practice (programming), and philosophy (incl. ethics)
  6. We try to employ an agile approach to learning and module design. To this end we use JIRA and Confluence. Please contact me if you have not go access already.

How to work with the module

  1. Read the theory.
  2. Do practical exercises to test your theoretical understanding
  3. Evaluate your own solutions and reflect upon
    • what have you learnt from the exercise?
    • what do you yet not know?
  4. Engage in the philosophical questions. Discuss with your classmates.
  5. Don’t try to do a lot of exercises quickly. It is better to make sure that you comprehend a few exercises fully, and can justify and validate your own reasoning.
  6. Ask Questions.
    I will generally not repeat material unsolicited, but I am very happy to discuss any question you may have.
  7. Keep a diary. Make sure you can refer back to previous ideas and reuse previous solutions.

Compulsory Assignments

There will be two compulsory assignments. The first one focuses on the practical challenges of modelling, solving, and programming solutions for various coding games, as we work on for the first six weeks. The second one focuses on philosophical questions including ethics and requires attendance.

Programming and Problem Solving

The goal of of this compulsory exercise is that you seek feedback on some of your solutions to practical problems. You should do this at least twice during the first six weeks of the semester, and we use the Confluence wiki to collect and give feedback on the material.

Each time you should

  1. Choose one of the problems from CodinGame or from pai-exercises.
  2. create a confluence page where you
    • model the problem abstractly
    • solve the abstract problem
    • code the solution for CodinGame (or similar
  3. get feedback from other students and similarly give feedback to others
  4. edit the confluence page (or add a subpage) discussing how you can use the feedback received
  5. add an action-reflection note, where you discuss what you have learnt from each program submitted and why the problem/solution is interesting in view of the syllabus. This should be about ½-1 page.

Deadline The very last deadline is 26 February 11:59pm. It is recommended that you do one problem ASAP, and one before the midterm break.

Learning Outcomes Programming skills. Modelling skills. Knowledge of Fundamental Algorithms. Problem Solving Competency.

Literature, Presentation, and Debate

Deadline Declare topic by 26 February 11:59pm

The second compulsory assignment is a verbal debate. I prepare a list of Questions or topics, with associated reading lists.

  1. You select a topic. You are not limited to the published list. If you have an idea on your own, please discuss it with me.
  2. Enter your topic and date into the Confluence Wiki.
  3. Read some literature and prepare an introduction to the topic.
  4. Present the topic to class, aiming to initate a dicussion.

Both technical and philosophical papers and topics may occur, but there will be an emphasis on philosophical questions.

Compulsory Attendance not only for you own presentation, but also when others present. One absence over the six or seven weeks we have this exercise is permitted.

Learning Outcomes Ability to read and interpret research papers. Verbal presentation skills. Ability to engage in peer discussions within the discipline. Awareness of the ethical concerns within AI.

How does the exam work

  1. Oral Exam.
  2. You get seven minutes to demonstrate the highlights of your understanding of the subject. Make a case for the grade you think you deserve.
  3. The examiner will use the rest of the time for questions to clarify and to demonstrate expected breadth and depth.
  4. Note that there are both theoretical, practical, and philosophical learning outcomes, and the module emphasises the relation between these three.


The core syllabus consists of

  1. The lectures and taught sessions.
  2. All learning material provided.
  3. TBC Core reading (session numbers may change)
    • Sessions 1-6: Russel & Norvig, Chapters 1-4 + 6
    • Sessions 7-9: Haupt & Haupt, Chapter 1-4
    • Session 10: Russel & Norvig Chapter 19 TBC
    • Sessions 11-13: Russel & Norvig Chapters 16 and 23
    • Session 14: Russel & Norvig Chapters 28-29

Note that the propositional knowledge that you can find well-defined in the textbooks only forms a part of this module. We will also study the tacit skills of problem solving and the ethical and philosophical dilemmas of intelligence, artificial or otherwise. This requires broader reading and more thinking on your part. A Reading List is provided and will be developed as we go along.