Monday, March 14, 2016

Alpha Go defeat human champion

Recently, human Go champion was defeated by the computer.

Daily Sabah Tech: Google's Alpha Go software beats human Go champion in the first match

“Alpha Go,” a computer software developed by Google was chosen as an opponent to Lee Sedol, Korean champion of Go in the 5-game match. Alpha Go equips a program named “Deep Brain,” which is a self-developing algorithm, won the first three games straightforward.

However, the fourth game performed yesterday was got by Lee. He was so grateful to this winning that he said this victory was priceless. On the other hand, Google programmers also welcomed this result because this defeat can be a source for enhancing the quality of the program.

I know the rule of Go, but am not a good player. So, I cannot evaluate the process of the battles. According to the media, Alpha Go invented some unique strategies human hardly can imagine.

It has been said that Go is far more complicated than Shogi and Chess. Nowadays, Grandmasters of Chess can hardly defeat the computer program. And recently, “Dennoh-Sen [The battle of the electric king],” the annual match of Shogi in which a human team fights with a computer, is paid great attention to Shogi players in Japan. The computer is advantageous in recent years. In contrast, Go had been deemed as a sanctuary of human players.

The core rule of Go is very simple. But the players have to assess the whole situation in each process. Even if a stone which the player put previously seems meaningless now, it can be decisive in the future. It is difficult to estimate the value of each stone respectively because they are mutually connected for protecting the field. Therefore, it was considered impossible to estimate the best move. Professional Go players have their own sense to decide the hands.

However, Alpha Go overcame the challenge. It means that vague feeling or instinct of human can potentially be described with a computer language. It is not only amazing but also fearful.

I do not think that Go will lose its fascination because of the victory of computer soon. But professional Go players have to change their mind, from aiming at defeat opponents to create new moves which are far from the imagination of computer.

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