AlphaGo, created by Google’s DeepMind team, has made a monumental step in positioning artificial intelligence (AI) against the human mind after defeating Lee Sedol, a professional Go player from South Korea. The software won the series against Sedol 4-1.
The bold victory made it clear that AI development continues to advance and improve, and can now compete against the human mind. The contest between a man and a machine was held on March 19, 2016. It was said to be a big turning point as most major South Korean television networks broadcasted the game, and the results made international news.
The Guardian mentioned that Lee commenced the game strong. He took advantage of an early error by AlphaGo. But in spite of the lead, Lee was not able to hold off and the software managed to defeat the professional Go player.
Demis Hassabis, co-founder of Google DeepMind, said that “The contest was one of the most incredible games ever. AlphaGo has mounted a mind-blowing comeback after an early mistake.”
Even though Lee was beaten, he shocked the world after creating a bold move in Game Four that no machine would ever expect. It gave him his only win in the series. The move presented that humans still have the capacity to create solutions and work around a problem despite a machine’s strong foundation of information and networks.
The Monte Carlo tree search, which is a heuristic search algorithm for decision processes, was applied to assist AlphaGo.
AI managed to progress from time to time. In the year 1990, IBM’s Deep Blue computer won a chess match against Garry Kasparov, a chess grandmaster. Back then, Kasparov was widely considered to be the best chess player on Earth.
Brute Force, which is a cryptanalytic attack, has the ability to decrypt any encrypted data. The method was applied to Deep Blue computer, helping it defeat Kasparov. The chess grandmaster did not go down without a fight. He pitched the idea that the match was just a publicity stunt made by IBM.
According to Kasparov, “I’m a human being. When I see something that is well beyond my understanding, I’m afraid.” He added that “I lost my fighting spirit.”
Live Science stated that the success of Deep Blue against Kasparov has marked a key milestone in the flourishing world of artificial intelligence.
Right now, AlphaGo-like algorithms are being utilized to study protein-folding to speed up new drug discoveries at the UK’s Crick Institute. It also analyses medical images in order to allow sharper cancer diagnoses and treatment plans at London’s University College Hospital. AlphaGo was reported as saving huge amounts of energy in power-hungry data centers at Google.
Artificial intelligence has become an important stride in modern society’s progress and development. The advancements made because of AI are helping society to reach a fuller potential. Now, the technology of AI is being boldly used across industries from healthcare to communications. Humans have no choice but to step up their game because if not, there will come a time where machines may overtake humans.