Forget AlphaGo; China's Alibaba is using its AI to predict TV talent show winners


Last month, Google altered our technophobic opinions on AI by using its AlphaGo program to defeat a world champion at the ancient Chinese board game of Go. Although most of us that tuned into the YouTube livestreams of the face-off were likely puzzled by the images of a computer typing out moves to a game we'd never heard of, it was a far cry from the nightmarish depictions of AI we'd become accustomed to in film and literature. Now, China's version of Google, Alibaba, is doing its bit to further familiarize us with the technology. Instead of tasking it with a board game that boasts limitless possibilities, however, it's matching it up with a more pressing (and popular) task; predicting the winner of a TV singing contest. China's popular reality TV show I'm a Singer will be getting the AI treatment, with Alibaba hoping it can outwit the public, and judges, by guessing the winner of the popular contest's finale.

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