Interest in AI has definitely flucuated over the years
AI was a required class in my computer science curriculum during the 90s but later dropped as a requirement. One of the things I took from the class was how amazing the human mind is and how difficult it is to replicate. The instructor mentioned how he would place an object on a table, say a rubber ball, and have the class write a 5,000 word essay describing the object. Sounds absurd at first, but notions like "how much does the ball weigh?" "how high would the ball bounce?" "what does the ball feel like?" and so on...soon the essays are completed.