The perceptron was a brilliant advance in the 1950s. In the last 30 years it has been improved to solve all sorts of problems. But in 1969, Minsky convinced everyone that the field was a dead-end, and progress stopped in that direction.
I am not trying to put Minsky. A lot of smart people misjudged the potential of perceptrons.
A 1972 book review said:
This book is a very interesting and penetrating study of the power ofWow, I would have said that dozens of XXc math theories were way more important. But related ideas are now being used for automatic face recognition, self-driving cars, voice commands, robotics, etc. Maybe someone will consider this a huge advance to enable our robot overlords to enslave us.
expression of perceptrons and some other mathematical problems concerning memory and learning. This subject is still quite new and hence at a stage of development in which the most important discoveries are being done. It seems to differ from the theory of automata in its greater relevance to our ideas about the organization of the brain and the construction of "such" machines. ... It is also the first purely mathematical monograph about certain aspects of learning and perception, and this subject may become the most important theory of 20th century mathematics.