According to NASA scientist Rick Briggs, Sanskrit is the best language for AI. I want to know how Sanskrit is useful. What's the problem with other languages? Are they really using Sanskrit in AI programming or going to do so? What part of an AI program requires such language?


Rick Briggs refers to the difficulty an artificial intelligence would have in detecting the true meaning of words spoken or written in one of our natural languages. Take for example an artificial intelligence attempting to determine the meaning of a sarcastic sentence.

Naturally spoken, the sentence "That's just what I needed today!" can be the expression of very different feelings. In one instance, a happy individual finding an item that had been lost for some time could be excited or cheered up from the event, and exclaim that this moment of triumph was exactly what their day needed to continue to be happy. On the other hand, a disgruntled office employee having a rough day could accidentally worsen his situation by spilling hot coffee on himself, and sarcastically exclaim that this further annoyance was exactly what he needed today. This sentence should in this situation be interpreted as the man expressing that spilling coffee on himself made his bad day worse.

This is one small example explaining the reason linguistic analysis is difficult for artificial intelligence. When this example is spoken, small tonal fluctuations and indicators are extremely difficult for an AI with a microphone to detect accurately; and if the sentence was simply read, without context how would one example be discernible from the other?

Rick Briggs suggests that Sanskrit, an ancient form of communication, is a naturally spoken language with mechanics and grammatical rules that would allow an artificial intelligence to more accurately interpret sentences during linguistic analysis. More accurate linguistic analysis would result in an artificial intelligence being able to respond more accurately. You can read more about Rick Brigg's thoughts on the language here.

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    $\begingroup$ Its not sacred to Hinduism, but is just a purer form of language form which languages like Hindi have descended, and since it was the only language during the older times so all religious texts are in Sanskrit $\endgroup$
    – user9947
    Mar 15 '18 at 7:04
  • $\begingroup$ I have edited my answer to reflect this. $\endgroup$ Apr 6 '18 at 7:50
  • $\begingroup$ @DuttaA Sanskrit is indeed sacred to Hinduism. There is a reason why it's called 'language of Gods'. See this. $\endgroup$
    – MathGod
    Oct 26 '18 at 8:22
  • $\begingroup$ @MathGod writing a sacred text with a particular language doesn't make it sacred....For me to believe you, you have to cite a source where it is written that the Vedas do say Sanskrit is sacred....like in Gita they probably say uttering Krishna is path to God or something like that...Hinduism is not a religion, it's during the later Vedic period religion, casteism arose...Also it was probably during this period changes were made to the story of ramyana where they added the sita agnipariksha part...So please cite me any source of early Vedic period. $\endgroup$
    – user9947
    Oct 26 '18 at 12:44
  • $\begingroup$ @DuttaA The "Vac" which is revered in Vedas is Vedic Sanskrit. There are early scriptures which exclusively talk about the properties of this language. Vedic Sanskrit has unique features of Vedic meter, Vedic chant and Vedic accent. Further, it is known as the "langauge of Gods", and other contemporary languages like Avesta were specifically labelled as "Mlechha" i.e, barbaric. I think this is sufficient enough proof of the sacrality of Sanskrit in Hinduism. $\endgroup$
    – MathGod
    Oct 26 '18 at 18:13

Adding some to what Christian said. Facts taken from the book, Artificial Intelligence: A Modern Approach
Burrhus Frederic Skinner, a psychologist and behaviourist, published his book Verbal Behaviour in 1957. His work contains the detailed account of the behaviourist approach to language learning.

Noam Chomsky later wrote a review on the book, which for some reason became more famous than the book itself. Chomsky has his own theory of Syntactic Structures for this. He even mentioned that the behaviourist theory did not address the notion of creativity in language as it did not explain how a child could understand and make up sentences that he/she has never heard before. His theory based on syntactic models are dated back to Indian linguist Panini (350 B.C.) who was an ancient Sanskrit philologist, grammarian, and a revered scholar.


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