Google is to live stream a forthcoming Go match between its AlphaGo AI program and the current world champion on YouTube.
Google’s DeepMind AI team recently made the news when its AlphaGo program handed out a 5-0 thrashing of European Go champ Fan Hui. It was the first time a program has defeated a professional player.
The gauntlet was then thrown down to the current highest-ranked Go player, Lee Sedol of South Korea. The five-game match will take place in Seoul in March, and there’s a whopping great $1 million prize at stake for the winner.
Just to add to the stakes, Google has now revealed that the match will be live streamed on YouTube.
Go is considered a much trickier game than chess for a computer program to master, owing to its complex levels of strategy and high number of potential scenarios.
The victory of the AlphaGo program over Fan Hui attracted a great deal of attention in the scientific community, and lead to a paper in the prominent science journal Nature.
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“If we win the match in March, then that’s sort of the equivalent of beating Kasparov in chess,” project lead Demis Hassabis told reporters in a press briefing on the Nature paper (via VentureBeat).
“Lee Sedol is the greatest player of the past decade. I think that would mean AlphaGo would be better than any human at playing Go. Go is the ultimate game in AI research.”