China got a wake-up call on AI when a Western machine beat the best Asian players at Go

China intends to become the world’s artificial intelligence leader in 2030, according to the manifesto it just released describing plans to create an industry of $150 billion and an environment that has AI “everywhere.” According to The New York Times (paywall), these ambitions are propelled in no small part by a machine’s dominance over Asian champions in the ancient strategy game called Go. Since last year, AlphaGo, developed by the Google-owned artificial-intelligence firm DeepMind, has consistently beaten the world’s top players, from China and South Korea, in a game said to be trickier than chess. The machine’s superiority over humans—a development that as recently as 2014 was not expected to arrive for another decade, marked a major milestone in AI development. At the closely watched recent man-against-machine tournament in China in May, Ke Jie, the world’s best human player at the time, wrote a letter saying “the future belongs to AI” before he sat down to play. Then he lost in back-to-back games to AlphaGo. The Times spoke to two professors, not named, who had advised China on AI, and who said that these Go defeats played a role in the ambitions China’s State Council, the country’s cabinet, displayed in…


Link to Full Article: China got a wake-up call on AI when a Western machine beat the best Asian players at Go

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