ELIZA effect

Computing Dictionary

ELIZA effect definition

jargon
/e-li:'z* *-fekt'/ (From ELIZA) The tendency of humans to attach associations to terms from prior experience. For example, there is nothing magic about the symbol "+" that makes it well-suited to indicate addition; it's just that people associate it with addition. Using "+" or "plus" to mean addition in a computer language is taking advantage of the ELIZA effect.
The ELIZA effect is a Good Thing when writing a programming language, but it can blind you to serious shortcomings when analysing an Artificial Intelligence system.
Compare ad-hockery; see also AI-complete.
[Jargon File]
(1997-09-13)

The Free On-line Dictionary of Computing, © Denis Howe 2010 http://foldoc.org
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