Lee Se-dol (a top player) was lost to a game of ‘Go’ by Google’s AlphaGo computer.
Google’s AlphaGo was developed by the DeepMind team and was bought in 2014 by Google but what is ‘Go’?
‘Go’ dates back to ancient China and was thought to be made several thousand years ago. To play, you have to use black-and-white stones on a grid; players gain the upper hand by surrounding their opponent’s pieces with their own. The rules are simpler than the rules of chess, but a player typically has a choice of 200 moves compared with about 20 in chess.
It can be very difficult to detect who is winning in the game, and many of the top human players rely on instinct.
There are more possible positions to play in ‘Go’ than atoms there are in the whole entire universe!
“After it’s learned that, it’s got to reasonable standards by looking at professional games. It then played itself, different versions of itself millions and millions of times and each time get incrementally slightly better – it learns from its mistakes.”
Demis Hassabis – a developer at the DeepMind Team.
The machine learns and improves from its own playing experience; this means the super computer is now even stronger than when it beat the European champion late last year!
By Ben – Co-ordinator for the Science and Tech section