Defeating Top Go Player, Artificial Intelligence Narrows Learning Gap with Humans

Despite our murky understanding of how human beings learn concepts, researchers from DeepMind—an artificial intelligence company under Google parent Alphabet—have developed a program that appears to bring human and machine learning closer than ever before. In a major breakthrough, the program defeated a top player of Go, an ancient board game that requires a mix of strategy and instinct once impossible for computers. In a competition held last fall, the program, also known as AlphaGo, defeated European champion Fan Hui in five straight games on a full board. The event marked the first time that a computer program had beaten a professional under those circumstances. Other programs had previously defeated professionals on smaller, unofficial boards or with other handicaps. The results were published in the journal Nature last week. Beating humans…


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