# Philosophy Dictionary of Arguments

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Decision theory: is not about decidability of problems within finite time, but about the consequences of decisions. See also rationality, actions, consequentialism, consequence, practical inference, decidability, counterfactual conditionals.

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Annotation: The above characterizations of concepts are neither definitions nor exhausting presentations of problems related to them. Instead, they are intended to give a short introduction to the contributions below. – Lexicon of Arguments.

Author Item Summary Meta data
Norvig I 638
Decision theory/AI research/Norvig/Russell: Decision theory has been a standard tool in economics, finance, and management science since the 1950s. Until the 1980s, decision trees were the main tool used for representing simple decision problems. Smith (1988)(1) gives an overview of the methodology of decision analysis. Influence diagrams were introduced by Howard and Matheson (1984)(2), based on earlier work at SRI (Miller et al., 1976)(3). Howard and Matheson’s method involved the
Norvig I 639
derivation of a decision tree from a decision network, but in general the tree is of exponential size. Shachter (1986)(4) developed a method for making decisions based directly on a decision network, without the creation of an intermediate decision tree. This algorithm was also one of the first to provide complete inference for multiply connected Bayesian networks. Zhang et al. (1994)(5) showed how to take advantage of conditional independence of information to reduce the size of trees in practice; they use the term decision network for networks that use this approach (although others use it as a synonym for influence diagram). Nilsson and Lauritzen (2000)(6) link algorithms for decision networks to ongoing developments in clustering algorithms for Bayesian networks. Koller and Milch (2003)(7) show how influence diagrams can be used to solve games that involve gathering information by opposing players, and Detwarasiti and Shachter (2005)(8) show how influence diagrams can be used as an aid to decision making for a team that shares goals but is unable to share all information perfectly. The collection by Oliver and Smith (1990)(9) has a number of useful articles on decision networks, as does the 1990 special issue of the journal Networks. >Decision networks/Norvig.
Norvig I 639
Surprisingly few early AI researchers adopted decision-theoretic tools after the early applications in medical decision (…). One of the few exceptions was Jerry Feldman, who applied decision theory to problems in vision (Feldman and Yakimovsky, 1974)(10) and planning (Feldman and Sproull, 1977)(11). After the resurgence of interest in probabilistic methods in AI in the 1980s, decision-theoretic expert systems gained widespread acceptance (Horvitz et al., 1988(12); Cowell et al., 2002)(13). >Expert systems/Norvig.

1. Smith, J. Q. (1988). Decision Analysis. Chapman and Hall.
2. Howard, R. A. and Matheson, J. E. (1984). Influence diagrams. In Howard, R. A. and Matheson,
J. E. (Eds.), Readings on the Principles and Applications of Decision Analysis, pp. 721–762. Strategic
Decisions Group.
3. Miller, A. C., Merkhofer, M. M., Howard, R. A., Matheson, J. E., and Rice, T. R. (1976). Development of automated aids for decision analysis. Technical report, SRI International.
4. Shachter, R. D. (1986). Evaluating influence diagrams. Operations Research, 34, 871–882.
5. Zhang, N. L., Qi, R., and Poole, D. (1994). A computational theory of decision networks. IJAR, 11,
83–158.
6. Nilsson, D. and Lauritzen, S. (2000). Evaluating influence diagrams using LIMIDs. In UAI-00, pp. 436–445.
7. Koller, D. and Milch, B. (2003). Multi-agent influence diagrams for representing and solving games.
Games and Economic Behavior, 45, 181–221.
8. Detwarasiti, A. and Shachter, R. D. (2005). Influence diagrams for team decision analysis. Decision
Analysis, 2(4), 207–228.
9. Oliver, R. M. and Smith, J. Q. (Eds.). (1990). Influence Diagrams, Belief Nets and Decision Analysis.
Wiley.
10. Feldman, J. and Yakimovsky, Y. (1974). Decision theory and artificial intelligence I: Semantics-based region analyzer. AIJ, 5(4), 349–371.
11. Feldman, J. and Sproull, R. F. (1977). Decision theory and artificial intelligence II: The hungry monkey.
Technical report, Computer Science Department, University of Rochester.
12. Horvitz, E. J., Breese, J. S., and Henrion, M. (1988). Decision theory in expert systems and artificial intelligence. IJAR, 2, 247–302.
13. Cowell, R., Dawid, A. P., Lauritzen, S., and Spiegelhalter, D. J. (2002). Probabilistic Networks and Expert Systems. Springer.

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Explanation of symbols: Roman numerals indicate the source, arabic numerals indicate the page number. The corresponding books are indicated on the right hand side. ((s)…): Comment by the sender of the contribution.
The note [Author1]Vs[Author2] or [Author]Vs[term] is an addition from the Dictionary of Arguments. If a German edition is specified, the page numbers refer to this edition.
AI Research
Norvig I
Peter Norvig
Stuart J. Russell
Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach Upper Saddle River, NJ 2010

Ed. Martin Schulz, access date 2020-09-26