Goto

Collaborating Authors

Computer Bridge: A Big Win for AI Planning

AI Magazine

A computer program that uses AI planning techniques is now the world champion computer program in the game of Contract Bridge. As reported in The New York Times and The Washington Post, this program -- a new version of Great Game Products' BRIDGE BARON program -- won the Baron Barclay World Bridge Computer Challenge, an international competition hosted in July 1997 by the American Contract Bridge League. It is well known that the game tree search techniques used in computer programs for games such as Chess and Checkers work differently from how humans think about such games. In contrast, our new version of the BRIDGE BARON emulates the way in which a human might plan declarer play in Bridge by using an adaptation of hierarchical task network planning. This article gives an overview of the planning techniques that we have incorporated into the BRIDGE BARON and discusses what the program's victory signifies for research on AI planning and game playing.


Current Trends in Automated Planning

AI Magazine

Automated planning technology has become mature enough to be useful in applications that range from game playing to control of space vehicles. In this article, Dana Nau discusses where automated-planning research has been, where it is likely to go, where he thinks it should go, and some major challenges in getting there. The article is an updated version of Nau's invited talk at AAAI-05 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. One motivation for automated-planning research is theoretical: planning is an important component of rational behavior--so if one objective of artificial intelligence is to grasp the computational aspects of intelligence, then certainly planning plays a critical role. Another motivation is very practical: plans are needed in many different fields of human endeavor, and in some cases it is desirable to create these plans automatically.


Current Trends in Automated Planning

AI Magazine

Automated planning technology has become mature enough to be useful in applications that range from game-playing to control of space vehicles. In this article, Dana Nau discusses where automated-planning research has been, where it is likely to go, where he thinks it should go, and some major challenges in getting there. The article is an updated version of Nau's invited talk at AAAI-05 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.


GIB: Imperfect Information in a Computationally Challenging Game

Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research

This paper investigates the problems arising in the construction of a program to play the game of contract bridge. These problems include both the difficulty of solving the game's perfect information variant, and techniques needed to address the fact that bridge is not, in fact, a perfect information game. GIB, the program being described, involves five separate technical advances: partition search, the practical application of Monte Carlo techniques to realistic problems, a focus on achievable sets to solve problems inherent in the Monte Carlo approach, an extension of alpha-beta pruning from total orders to arbitrary distributive lattices, and the use of squeaky wheel optimization to find approximately optimal solutions to cardplay problems. GIB is currently believed to be of approximately expert caliber, and is currently the strongest computer bridge program in the world.


GIB: Imperfect Information in a Computationally Challenging Game

Journal of Artificial Intelligence Research

This paper investigates the problems arising in the construction of a program to play the game of contract bridge. These problems include both the difficulty of solving the game's perfect information variant, and techniques needed to address the fact that bridge is not, in fact, a perfect information game. GIB, the program being described, involves five separate technical advances: partition search, the practical application of Monte Carlo techniques to realistic problems, a focus on achievable sets to solve problems inherent in the Monte Carlo approach, an extension of alpha-beta pruning from total orders to arbitrary distributive lattices, and the use of squeaky wheel optimization to find approximately optimal solutions to cardplay problems. GIB is currently believed to be of approximately expert caliber, and is currently the strongest computer bridge program in the world.