Google reflects on ‘man vs. machine’ Go series

alphago go board
In the wake of AlphaGo’s 4-1 victory over internationally renowned Go player Lee Sedol, Google has published a blog post ruminating on the win and what it means for the company going forward. The post was written by Demis Habassis, the CEO and co-founder of DeepMind, which Google acquired back in 2014.

Habassis notes that public interest in the series was far beyond the company’s wildest expectations. Search queries related to Go saw a dramatic increase in the United States, tens of millions of viewers tuned in to watch the games live in China and sales of Go boards shot up in places such as Korea.

AlphaGo managed to pull off a convincing victory over the 9-dan professional Lee, but this was not the expected result ahead of the contest. Habassis notes that the result came as something of a surprise even to the team working on the project, but takes the time to commend Lee for his victory in the fourth game.

A healthy $1 million prize fund was amassed for the event, which Google and DeepMind will donate to charity. The bulk of the money will apparently be given to organizations that help promote STEM education programs, with a portion being directed towards UNICEF.

While the charity donation is a useful byproduct of the win, the greatest benefit to DeepMind comes from the successful implementation of its technology. The series was billed as “man vs. machine,” but Habassis praises Lee for pushing his team forward and helping to further their research in the process.

That said, the CEO lays down a Korean quote pertaining to Go to temper any inflated expectations — “Don’t be arrogant when you win or you’ll lose your luck.”

A victory over Lee is a huge moment for DeepMind and a compelling statement on the progress researchers are making with regards to machine learning and artificial intelligence. However, there’s still a long way to go before organizations like Google and DeepMind can do as much as they intend to with this kind of technology.

Gaming

From PUBG to Apex Legends, this is how battle royale happened

Battle royale games like PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds’ and Fortnite have become the biggest trend in video games. The genre is also pushing the envelope in Twitch streaming and eSports.
Movies & TV

Stranger Things season 3 is coming! Here’s everything we know so far

With a sophomore season as strong as its first, Stranger Things is now moving on to season 3. Here's everything we've learned so far about the Netflix series' upcoming third season, premiering in July 2019.
Gaming

Last gen had some hits! Take a look at the best PS3 games of all time

Choosing the right PlayStation 3 game can be a conundrum, especially when there are nearly 1,500 titles to choose from. Thankfully, we've rounded up the best games to have ever made it to the platform.
Gaming

The best of the last generation: Our 50 favorite Xbox 360 games

The Xbox 360 thrived during a generation where games were plentiful. Here's our list of the best Xbox 360 games of all time, including all game genres and even a few special indie hits.
Computing

Microsoft’s Clippy came back from the dead, but didn’t last very long

Before Cortana, Alexa, and Siri even existed, Microsoft Clippy dominated the screens of computers in the 1990s to help assist Microsoft Office users when writing letters. He recently made a bit of a comeback only to die off again.
Computing

Nvidia faces attacks from AMD, Intel, and even Google. Should it be worried?

Nvidia announced an expanded array of RTX server solutions designed to leverage the power of ray-tracing at GTC 2019. The effort will help Nvidia take on Google's Stadia in game streaming with GeForce Now, and the company's investments in…
Computing

How 5G networks will make low-latency game streaming a reality

Faster speeds and more bandwidth are some of the many promises that 5G can deliver, but for gamers, the most important thing is low latency. To achieve low latency, carriers like AT&T and Verizon are exploring hybrid models for game…
Deals

Time to do taxes? Save up to 50 percent on H&R Block tax software this weekend

Tax season is stressful, and with new tax laws in effect this year, it's not a bad idea to get some help. H&R Block has you covered: For two days only, you can save 50 percent on its great software so you can file your taxes online and save…
Computing

Stop dragging windows on your Mac. Here's how to use Split View to multitask

The latest iterations of MacOS offer a native Split View feature that can automatically divide screen space between two applications. Here's how to use Split View on a Mac, adjust it as needed, and how it can help out.
Computing

Breeze through security with these checkpoint-friendly laptop bags

Getting through airport security is a drag, but your laptop bag shouldn’t be. Thankfully, these checkpoint-friendly laptop bags will get you and your gear to your destination with ease.
Computing

The new iMacs push on iMac Pro territory, but how much power do you really need?

With Apple refreshing the higher-end iMacs with newer processors and graphics cards, it moves closer to the iMac Pro. In this guide, we consider the performance, features, and help make sense of the differences between the two.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Robotic companions and computer-aided karaoke

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it's fun to gawk!
Computing

Protect your expensive new laptop with the best Macbook cases

If you recently picked up a new MacBook, you’ll want something to protect its gorgeous exterior. Here, we've gathered the best MacBook cases and covers, whether you're looking for style or protection.
Computing

Worried about your online privacy? We tested the best VPN services

Browsing the web can be less secure than most users would hope. If that concerns you, a virtual private network — aka a VPN — is a decent solution. Check out a few of the best VPN services on the market.