Expert systems are developed to emulate experts in specific problem domain. They are also used to automate decisions in repetitive environments. The area of expert systems is a branch of artificial intelligence where computer systems are produced to simulate the abilities of the human brain.
The intention of an expert system is to computerise the expertise of individuals with certain skills. The expertise can be preserved and improved, and the system may even replace the expert. In practice, the expert systems seldom replace the expert but assist in the expert in decision making especially for repetitive tasks. Complex decisions which require thorough considerations of many factors may be done many times, and the expert systems can improve the decision making process.
The more common expert systems are rule-based systems. In demonstrations that classify objects in complex environments, a series of questions is asked with each question often depending on the answers to previous questions.
The objects are then classified by the system, for example animals can be classified in this way. Some examples of real applications using expert systems are classification of loan applicants by the amount of risk involved, hiring of new employees, medical diagnosis of specific diseases and computer system design. Repetitive tasks such as interviewing prospective tax clients in an accounting firm may also be guided by an expert system.
Expert system are generally very focused on specific application areas, and require detailed development of expertise as well as significant amount of time to program and test. So far it has taken years to develop a system to perform a very specific task. However, developments in the field of expert systems has improved to ease the development of applications and reduce the amount of time required.
Compared to decision support systems, expert systems are meant to...