Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach (1st ed)

The first fifteen chapters or so didn’t blow me away. There’s a lot in there about search trees, which I guess could be good if you’re very unfamiliar with the concept. I’ve also seen more interesting explanations of A* and minimax elsewhere, though those are both good material to have in a long games-focused intro to artificial intelligence. (My all-time favorite intro to A* involves writing pathfinding for a simple 2d video game, but I can’t seem to dig it up at the moment.)

Next up are a few chapters on probability, utility, and decision making. I think these are better, but still not especially dense (in the way you’d want them to be). The machine learning stuff is lackluster, viewed through the lens of twenty years of additional excitement. All material on the future of AI felt pretty handwavy.

Overall, I think I got bitten by the old version number I had. Or maybe this is one of those books that’s famous because everybody reads it, and everybody reads it because it’s famous.