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Why Can a Machine Beat Mario but not Pokemon?


By now, you've probably heard of bots playing video games at superhuman levels. These bots can be programmed explicitly, reacting to set inputs with set outputs, or learn and evolve, reacting in different ways to the same inputs in hopes of finding the optimal responses. These games are complex, and training these machines takes clever combinations of complicated algorithms, repeated simulations, and time. I want to focus on MarI/O and why we can't use a similar approach to beat a game of Pokemon (watch the video in the link above if you are unfamiliar with how it works). Let's compare the games using each of these factors. The way a machine learns is by optimizing some kind of objective function.

Watch a Robot AI Beat World-Class Curling Competitors


Artificial intelligence still needs to bridge the "sim-to-real" gap. Deep-learning techniques that are all the rage in AI log superlative performances in mastering cerebral games, including chess and Go, both of which can be played on a computer. But translating simulations to the physical world remains a bigger challenge. A robot named Curly that uses "deep reinforcement learning"--making improvements as it corrects its own errors--came out on top in three of four games against top-ranked human opponents from South Korean teams that included a women's team and a reserve squad for the national wheelchair team. One crucial finding was that the AI system demonstrated its ability to adapt to changing ice conditions.

World's smallest Rubik's Cube to be sold in Japan

The Japan Times

Japanese toy-maker MegaHouse Corp. said Wednesday it will launch the world's smallest working Rubik's Cube, weighing about 2 grams and measuring 0.99 centimeter on each side. On the same day, the Bandai Namco Holdings Inc. subsidiary started accepting orders for the product online. It is priced at ¥198,000 in Japan, including delivery costs. Delivery will start in late December. The Rubik's Cube, invented by Erno Rubik from Hungary in 1974, hit store shelves across the world in 1980. In Japan, MegaHouse has shipped out over 14 million cubes.

Machine Learning is Powering App Development


Since the computers were introduced, the primary object of their evolution has been to take vigorous calculations off our plates. It meant easing tasks that would take us a long time. Over the past decade, the computing capabilities of mobile devices have arrived at a point where it's now easy to install machine learning remotely. Although artificial intelligence (AI) is a term that gets thrown around a lot, it's machine learning, which is making automation possible. When we discuss AI, we refer to its branch called machine learning.

BlizzCon Returns Next Year As Online Event

International Business Times

Blizzard Entertainment made true to its promise to host an online version of BlizzCon after the company was forced to cancel its in-person convention due to the pandemic caused by COVID-19. BlizzCon 2020 was supposed to take place later this year, but with the events that caused a worldwide dilemma has urged organizers to think of ways to still push through the annual event while observing guidelines set by health agencies and the government to curb the spread of the virus. "We're talking about how we might be able to channel the BlizzCon spirit and connect with you in some way online, far less impacted by the state of health and safety protocols for mass in-person gatherings," said BlizzCon Executive Producer Saralyn Smith in a May 26, 2020 blog post. Blizzard Entertainment's eSports World Championship competitions for "Hearthstone," "Heroes of the Storm," "World of Warcraft" and "StarCraft 2" will be held over an entire week later this year. Windows 10 has come on board as an official BlizzCon 2015 sponsor, with the opening ceremony streaming on Xbox One for the first time.

Amy and Mike Morhaime take questions about their new venture, Dreamhaven

Washington Post - Technology News

We can all join a raid and have the same goal and accomplish that together. And we can all do that together. Imagine if we could do that in real life. Imagine what we would be able to do if we could connect people across all these different categories. You know, it's hard to imagine these days now in the U.S. when you see how divided everything is, but imagine if we could all do that -- instead of working towards killing a raid boss, we're solving something even deeper for society.

The greatness of 'Super Mario Galaxy' is undermined by poor controls on Switch

Washington Post - Technology News

In handheld mode, the star pointer is operated entirely through the touch screen. This might sound like a good solution on paper, but "Super Mario Galaxy" often requires multitasking. For example, while fighting a boss, you may be running away from them, avoiding their line of fire, trying to collect star bits, and so on. Whenever I wanted to acquire star bits, I would have to keep Mario in place, let go of the joystick, and touch the screen. "Super Mario Galaxy" can be a fast-paced game, and having to stop and touch the screen during a tense moment can ruin the experience.

DeepMind's AI is helping to re-write the rules of chess


In the game between chess and artificial intelligence, Google DeepMind's researchers have made yet another move, this time teaming up with ex-chess world champion Vladimir Kramnik to design and trial new AI-infused variants of the game. With the objective of improving the design of balanced sets of game rules, the research team set out to discover the best tweaks they could possibly give to the centuries-old board game, in an ambitious effort to refresh chess dynamics thanks to AI. The scientists used AlphaZero, an adaptive learning system that can teach itself new rules from scratch and achieve superhuman levels of play, to test the outcomes of nine different chess variants that they pre-defined with Kramnik's help. For each variant, AlphaZero played tens of thousands of games against itself, analyzing every possible move for any given chessboard condition, and generating new strategies and gameplay patterns. Kramnik and the researchers then assessed what games between human players might look like if these variants were adopted, to find out whether different sets of rules might improve the game.

PlayStation 'father' Ken Kutaragi becomes CEO of AI startup


Former Sony executive Ken Kutaragi, often called the "father" of the PlayStation video game system, has been named CEO of Tokyo-based startup Ascent Robotics. Ascent develops artificial-intelligence technologies for self-driving cars and other applications. Kutaragi said in a statement that he hopes to "drive the team forward on both the technology and business fronts." He joined the company's board in 2018. Ascent announced Kutaragi's appointment on Friday.

After observing a year of digital events, The Game Awards will end 2020 with its own

Washington Post - Technology News

Keighley's spent the last few months observing similar live events of other big productions, like this week's Emmy's or last month's political conventions. The Democratic National Convention featured an "audience" of virtual screens clapping, and it caused Keighley to think about how to recreate a similar feel for The Game Awards, especially since Twitch and YouTube users have been posting live reactions to game industry announcements for well over a decade now.