We are currently using the term circularizing (I made it up) as the technique of using artificial intelligence to check something, have devs check what artificial intelligence suggestions, which allow artificial intelligence to spit out new data, that devs have to check, and on and on.

Is there a word to describe this process or can I just use what I made up?

  • The older term for that technique was Pavlovian Conditioning. Please tell me this isn't being used for anything important like airplanes or ships or power grids or my coffee maker. You are conditioning the AI to be a yes man, and the AI is conditioning the devs to be what, exactly?
    – Phil Sweet
    Nov 2 at 22:55
  • Is "training" the AI the word you're looking for?
    – alphabet
    Nov 3 at 0:29
  • What's wrong with "feedback loop"?
    – user888379
    Nov 3 at 12:43
  • This is not necessarily circular (or even spiral). It's hierarchical, like a factory with active supervisors Nov 3 at 17:07
  • 1
    @JohnLawler - it is in the way that the product being made never leaves the factory, it just keeps going in circles with one group making changes and the other supposedly making it better. Nov 3 at 17:59

2 Answers 2


Merriam Webster gives one definition of the word iteration as:

the action or a process of iterating or repeating: such as a procedure in which repetition of a sequence of operations yields results successively closer to a desired result.

Iteration is aiso used in mathematics to describe the process of repeatedly using the same formula to approach a desired value (an example is the calculation of better and better approximations of infinite numbers like pi and the square root of a number which is not a perfect square).

It seems to me that what you are doing to train the AI is iterating since you are applying the validation process to succeszive results of the same validation process.

Iteration seems to be an accurate description of the process you describe.

  • I agree that this is a general word that could be used but in this context I don't think it works. There is nothing inferring from Iteration that the process is done with duality nor is there anything that says that it is continuous (maybe infinite). Nov 6 at 21:31

Continuous improvement comes to my mind, and behold there's this far more detailed wikipedia article about it than I expected.

Also detailed there is why an ISO standards body preferred the semantics of "continual improvement" to the-- sorry, guys-- IMO more idiomatic continuous improvement.

  • But we'd say "they're continually improving" not "they're continuously improving".
    – TimR
    Nov 4 at 0:18
  • Actually the latter seems to explain the active rather than passive process better to my ears. If we're trying to explain a business process rather than personal growth. I didn't mean to sound like I quibble with the grammaticity of the change in terminology, I was just surprised to see it because my ears have not yet heard it phrased that way. However it's subtle and maybe I'm just not listening.
    – stevesliva
    Nov 4 at 0:45
  • To my mind, continuous means uninterrupted, which doesn't go well semantically with a practice of making iterative refinements. But that's such a fine nuance. It's like asking for the difference between "The product is always getting better" and "The product is getting better and better."
    – TimR
    Nov 4 at 13:09
  • this describes the process in general but makes absolutely no reference to the way the process works which is the heart of the question. Nov 10 at 21:57
  • @RyeBread - wikipedia article mentions an inherent PDCA (plan, do, check, act) cycle. I think mentioning it is "useful" which is the threshold suggested up upvote/downvote. Especially for questions like this, I'm not shooting for a "perfect" standard. To wit: "comes to mind" vs. "this'll knock your socks off." :D Especially when the question outright asks if there is an idiomatic term and notes that you've already coined something if there isn't one.
    – stevesliva
    Nov 11 at 1:09

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