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Pacific AI Provides Intelligent Testing
with Delphi, Access and Amzi!

Pacific AI implements intelligent training and testing tools. Their latest project is an online assessment testing tool that can be used for either assessing a student's performance, or creating a self-study guide that is driven by the student's responses to test questions. In either case, the flow of the test is determined by student answers.

The user interface for the tests is implemented using Borland's Delphi. Prolog is used for the scripting language which defines the test questions, the intelligent flow of the test based on student answers, generating assessment reports, and physically laying out the Delphi controls that will be presented for any given question. Access is used for storing the questions and printing tests.

The implementation of the scripting language for intelligent tests capitalizes on Prolog's strengths for language parsing. The direct manipulation of Delphi controls by Prolog relies on the ease with which Amzi! Prolog can be extended to access anything callable from Delphi (or C/C++).

For example, Prolog code takes symbolic representations of equations and presents them both textually formatted as they might appear in a text book (fractions above and below, square root radicals fully drawn, exponents raised, etc.) and graphically using Scigraph's Delphi graphing component. In the first case, Prolog is an excellent tool for expressing the rules for formatting an equation, which are translated directly into drawing commands, and in the second, Prolog is excellent at converting a symbolic representation of an equation into points for graphing which are passed to the Scigraph component.

For self-study, the Prolog code can directly access Windows help files. Based on student answers, the scripting language for the tests can direct the student to help topics that explain the areas the student is having difficulty with.

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