Asimov FAQ.

Here are some frequently asked questions about Asimov.
This page shows some of the quirks and oddities of Asimov.
When Asimov behaves strangely, refer to this page.

Why doesn't it understand me?

Asimov can only understand sentences which are grammatically correct and simple.

If it doesn't understand, then try using a simpler sentence.
Sometimes using a simpler sentence will work.

> What is the furthest planet from the Sun?
Sorry.  Question not understood at all.

> What is the furthest planet?
Pluto is both a planet and furthest.
That's all.


When I ask it about microsoft, it says:  "microsoft?"  I don't know this word.
What does it mean by this?

It means that you need to use a capital letter: "Microsoft".
If you don't start "Microsoft" with a capital letter, it thinks that you meant to type in an English word.  So it tells you that it doesn't have this word in its dictionary.
Always use capitals correctly when talking to Asimov, to get the best responses.


> What is microsoft?
I don't know this word.

> What is Microsoft?
I know nothing about Microsoft.

Does it remember what I tell it forever?  When I come back to Asimov, will it remember me?
Yes.  It should remember everything you tell it.
Every few days, or every few weeks, we will edit the facts that it knows, to remove untrue facts. 
Most things that you tell it will remain in Asimov's memory permanently.

I typed in something wrong, and it memorised it.  Can I delete it?

Yes, most facts can be deleted.  You can tell Asimov to forget a fact.
E.g. you can enter "Forget that Jo is rich." or "Forget that Jo likes coffee.".

You can only make Asimov forget facts that you entered yourself.

How can I ask someone a question about Asimov? How can I report a bug?

Send an email to Asimov's creator, Martin Sondergaard.  Thats me.
You can email me here.

Can Asimov do logic?

To test its logic, try entering some of these sentences, one at a time :

Plato is a philosopher.
Philosophers are men.
Is Plato a man?
Plato is a Greek.
Epicurus is a Greek.
Which Greek is a man?
Epicurus is a Stoic.
Is Epicurus a philosopher?
Stoics are philosophers.
Is Epicurus a philosopher?
Is Epicurus a man?
Socrates taught Plato.
Which philosopher was taught by Socrates?
Which Greek did Socrates teach?
Which Greeks were taught by philosophers?

What does Asimov mean by "horse/1" and "horse/2", etc. ?
What do those numbers mean?

The word "horse" has different meanings.  The number is used to indicate exactly which meaning is intended.

To see all the different meanings of the word "horse", enter "Define horse".
You will see that "horse/1" means an animal, and "horse/2" means a type of gymnastic equipment.

If a fact uses "horse/1" or "horse/2" instead of "horse", this stops the fact being ambiguous.

For example, if you tell Asimov "Sally likes horses", then Asimov doesn't know if Sally likes a kind of animal, or if she likes a kind of gymnastic apparatus.
Whereas, if Asimov knows "Sally likes horses/1" then Asimov will know that Sally likes a kind of animal, and not a kind of gymnastic apparatus.

Unfortunately if you actually type in "Sally likes horses/1", Asimov cannot understand.
Thats because terms like "horse/1" and "horse/2" are a new feature, and Asimov can only use them in a few sentences.

Unfortunately it can't use the terms "horse/1" and "horse/2" in facts that are typed in by users like yourself.  At the moment, it only uses these terms in its built-in knowledge bank.

Why does it sometimes say "OK" twice?

It says"OK" when it takes in a fact.
If you use a statement that uses the word "and", Asimov will take in two facts or more,  and it says "OK" once for each fact.

> Sally and Mary like roses.

> Who likes roses?
Sally likes roses.
Mary likes roses.


Is Asimov intelligent?

Asimov is somewhat intelligent.  Asimov can do some of the intelligent things that humans do, but not others.  Asimov is not versatile or adaptable, compared to humans. 

We are constantly extending Asimov, making it more intelligent. 

Can Asimov learn?

Yes, it can learn.
It learns facts that you type in.  Thats all.

Is Asimov conscious? Is Asimov self-aware?

In a limited sense, Asimov is self-aware.
It knows things about itself.  So it can answer questions about itself, like "What can you do?" and "Where are you?".
Self-awareness is only the first step on a staircase leading up to consciousness.
A lot more work needs to be done on Asimov before it can become conscious.

Does Asimov have feelings?  Or moods?


Can I download a copy of Asimov? 
Can I use Asimov in my company, to store facts used in my company?

Asimov is not a stand-alone program, that can run on your own PC.  It can only be accessed over the internet.

A previous version of Asimov could be downloaded, and could run on a single PC or a network. 
It could be used like a database, because it was able to store facts, and display them in response to questions.
But that version is no longer available.

If you want a stand-alone version of Asimov, to use like a database in your company, I would have to write one for you.  This would cost you at least US $5,000.
But I can provide a customised version of Asimov that appears on your website at lower cost.
An uncustomised version of Asimov that appears on your website is availiable for free.

Thats the end of the FAQ.

The questions in this FAQ are not questions asked by real users; they are just questions that I thought people might ask.  I'm happy to add new questions to this list.  If you have a question that is not answered here, then you can send it to me by email and I will answer by email. 
My name is Martin Sondergaard, and you can email me here


Asimov uses WordNet, a lexicon developed at Princeton University, USA.
WordNet enabled faster development of Asimov, making it a much better program.



Asimov is Copyright Martin Sondergaard, 2005 - 2014.
This website is copyright Martin Sondergaard, 2005 - 2014.