Welcome to the Intelligent Computer Systems Department (ICS)!
Formerly known as the Department of Artificial Intelligence, the ICS department is concerned with getting machines to behave humanly: to learn, and discover on the basis of experience; to speak, to hear, to hold conversations in English or Maltese; to adapt to circumstances in a flexible way; to assist humans or other computers with complex tasks; or to control the home environment or the workplace to automatically respond to and adapt to the need and requirements of the individuals inhabiting or working in the space. In short, Artificial Intelligence (AI) studies the problem of building intelligent systems that behave like you and me.
In a more general sense, Artificial Intelligence seeks to define solutions to complex problems which may only be specified vaguely or abstractly and which do not, at first sight, appear to have a clear computational solution. As we raise our expectations concerning the performance of computers, more problems fall into this category. Examples include the automatic discovery of relationships between genes within the field of Bioinformatics, the mining of semantic information from the Internet, or learning to clean up the kitchen after a party.
AI, and its inherent relationship to computer science, are first explored during the second year of the undergraduate programme. In subsequent years, and at postgraduate level, the student can profit from the Department's active involvement in several different areas of specialisation including user-adaptive systems, bioinformatics, machine learning, web science, human language technologies, search and information retrieval, and game playing.
On behalf of all members of the Department, I look forward to your participation.
- Chris Staff
(Original text by Mike Rosner, modified with permission by Chris Staff, 2010)
8 March 2014