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Year in review: AlphaGo scores a win for artificial intelligence

Computer defeats world champion Go player

By
7:33am, December 14, 2016
AlphaGo versus Lee Sedol

GO GAME CHANGER AlphaGo won four games to Lee Sedol’s one in their March Go matchup. Sedol, a South Korean professional player, studies the board after his third loss.

In a hotel ballroom in Seoul, South Korea, early in 2016, a centuries-old strategy game offered a glimpse into the fantastic future of computing.

The computer program AlphaGo bested a world champion player at the Chinese board game Go, four games to one (SN Online: 3/15/16). The victory shocked Go players and computer gurus alike. “It happened much faster than people expected,” says Stuart Russell, a computer scientist at the University of California, Berkeley. “A year before the match, people were saying that it would take another 10 years for us to reach this point.”

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