Champion Go player quits because AI ‘cannot be defeated’

Champion Go player quits because AI ‘cannot be defeated’

A former world champion player of strategy game Go has retired because of the rise of artificial intelligence he says “cannot be defeated”.

In 2016, Lee Sedol lost a best-of-five series against AI software created by Google firm DeepMind.

The South Korean is an 18-time world champion and considered one of the greatest Go players of the modern age – but was beaten 4-1 by DeepMind’s AlphaGo software.

Sedol told the Yonhap news agency in South Korea that the appearance of AI capable of playing the game had left him feeling unable to truly regard himself as the best.

“With the debut of AI in Go games, I’ve realised that I’m not at the top even if I become the number one through frantic efforts,” he said.

“Even if I become the number one, there is an entity that cannot be defeated.”

AlphaGo’s 2016 was widely regarded as a landmark moment in the development of artificial intelligence software because of the complexity of the board game.

The Chinese, strategy-based board game is believed to be several thousand years old.

Go, known as Weiqi in China and Baduk in Korea, is considered challenging because of the near-infinite number of possible positions on the board.

Players take turns putting white or black stones on a rectangular grid with 361 intersections, trying to surround larger areas of the board while also capturing each other’s pieces.

Competitors play until both agree there are no more places to put stones or one quits.

Before beating a European champion in 2016 and Sedol in 2016, experts had expected it to be at least another decade before computers could beat the best humans due to Go’s complexity and reliance on intuition.

More in this Section

Google adds new photo controls and faster Assistant in first Pixel feature dropGoogle adds new photo controls and faster Assistant in first Pixel feature drop

Less ‘junk news’ on Twitter but still shared widely on Facebook, research claimsLess ‘junk news’ on Twitter but still shared widely on Facebook, research claims

iPhone 11 offers outstanding photos, videos and extra €350 in your pocketiPhone 11 offers outstanding photos, videos and extra €350 in your pocket

Instagram now requests date of birth when accounts createdInstagram now requests date of birth when accounts created


Lifestyle

As David Attenborough announces new series on plants, we run down some of the weird and wonderful vegetation he might include.11 bizarre plant species from around the world

The weather’s always going to be a key factor on any wedding day — but especially so when the bride works for Met Éireann, writes Eve Kelliher.Wedding of the week: Bride and groom are literally on cloud nine

My wife and I are in our fifties and she has just started using porn. She thinks it will enhance our sex life if we watch it together, but I find the idea a total turn-off.Suzi Godson's Sex Advice: My wife wants us to watch porn together?

As you probably have heard by now, changes to the rules concerning gift vouchers in Ireland came into effect earlier this month, giving consumers more rights when it comes to these popular items.Making Cents: Play your cards right when giving gift vouchers this Christmas

More From The Irish Examiner