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Google AI

After Go, Developers Are Now Building AI To Beat Us at Soccer (cnet.com) 123

After Google's AlphaGo artificial intelligence bested our best Go player, South Korea is now setting its sights on making AI that can play soccer. From a report: Hosted by the Korea Advanced Institute of Science & Technology (KAIST), the AI World Cup will see university students across South Korea developing AI programs to compete in a series of online games, reported The Korea Times. The prelims will begin in November. "The football matches will be conducted in a five on five tournament," a KAIST spokesperson told the publication on Tuesday. "Each of the five AI-programmed players in such positions as striker, defender and goalkeeper will compete with their counterparts."
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After Go, Developers Are Now Building AI To Beat Us at Soccer

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  • by Luthair ( 847766 ) on Wednesday July 12, 2017 @11:23AM (#54793793)
    Bender: Now Wireless Joe Jackson, there was a blern-hitting machine!
    Leela: Exactly! He was a machine designed to hit blerns! I mean, come on, Wireless Joe was nothing but a programmable bat on wheels.
    Bender: Oh, and I suppose Pitchomat 5000 was just a modified howitzer?
  • by xxxJonBoyxxx ( 565205 ) on Wednesday July 12, 2017 @11:29AM (#54793841)
    Developers Are Now Building AI To Beat Us at Some Crappy 5-Person-Per-Team, Soccer-Themed Video Game

    FTFY - no charge.
  • by Viol8 ( 599362 ) on Wednesday July 12, 2017 @11:33AM (#54793873) Homepage

    Football (sorry americans, thats what the rest of the world calls it) games have had fairly decent "AI" players for years. This is hardly raising the bar. Now if they created real robots that could beat a human at football, THAT would be something to behold. Though I don't suspect Boston Dynamics will be worrying about their share price anytime soon over that possibility.

    • Re: (Score:1, Troll)

      Football (sorry americans, thats what the rest of the world calls it)

      No need to apologize just because you're all wrong...

      • by Kjella ( 173770 )

        No need to apologize just because you're all wrong...

        Except for throwing the ball, running with the ball and scoring the most points by not kicking the ball it's a great name! It's also telling that it takes an entire evening to get through a hour of game time... pauseball would be a better name.

    • Often a lot of video game "AI" are actually cheats.
      With predefined actions when something appears.
      Eg A Goalkeeper would be inactive until the ball is so many pixels away. Then it will move to to try to intercept the ball. Normally this is designed so the human player has a chance on getting it past it. An AI Goal Keeper may choose to leave the confines of the box, and help with defense. Seeing trends in the offset a fast kicker, or one that uses a lot of lift, or can do a curve, tends to favor the left or

      • by gnick ( 1211984 )

        ...predefined actions when something appears... Eg A Goalkeeper would be inactive until the ball is so many pixels away. Then it will move to to try to intercept the ball... An AI Goal Keeper may choose to leave the confines of the box, and help with defense.

        Choosing to leave the box and help with defense has nothing to do with whether or not the goal keeper posses AI. It just depends on the constraints placed on the problem he's presented and the logic he uses to resolve it. Are you suggesting that true AI will break loose of its programmed parameters?

    • by chthon ( 580889 )

      It's also called soccer in the Commonwealth.

      • by Anonymous Coward

        And the term originated in England as nickname for "Association Football" to distinguish it from "Rugby Football". At the time adding "-er" on to the end of a word was a common slang way of informally naming things.

        The "Association League" after which "soccer" was named has long since been abandoned. And not all football was association league anyway.

        It would be like saying kids in American elementary schools are playing in the NFL when they play Amercan Football. Same rules, and people would know what

    • by Anonymous Coward

      Association football is the correct name for the sport you are trying to describe.

      Football includes a very large number of related sports, there is no single sport that is the true football. Some nations have officially tried to redefine the word "football" to apply exclusively to "association football" but bureaucrats don't have the authority to redefine language to be less precise.

  • With how easy the walking robots fall over (we have all seen the videos), it should not be that hard.

  • Code (Score:5, Funny)

    by Rik Sweeney ( 471717 ) on Wednesday July 12, 2017 @11:50AM (#54794011) Homepage

    Here's the code:

    if (in_posession_of_ball && opposition_near) {
          take_a_dive_but_pretend_you_were_fouled();
    }

    • by Tablizer ( 95088 )

      but_pretend_you_were_fouled

      Bender: "My shiny metal ass fell off! My shiny metal ass fell off!"

    • by Kjella ( 173770 )

      if (nationality = 'Italian' && in_posession_of_ball && opposition_near) {
                  take_a_dive_but_pretend_you_were_fouled();
      }
      else
      {
                  play_ball();
      }

      FTFY.

    • by chill ( 34294 )

      Ah, you coded for one of the European teams.

      http://www.gocomics.com/getfuzzy/2010/7/11 [gocomics.com]

    • Here's the code:

      if (in_posession_of_ball && opposition_near) { take_a_dive_but_pretend_you_were_fouled(); }

      Correct. But the function name would be in Italian, though.

    • Here's the code:

      if (in_posession_of_ball && opposition_near) { take_a_dive_but_pretend_you_were_fouled(); }

      Fixed your code:

      while (FIFA_stubbornly_reject_video_control()) {
      ...
      }

  • To me, those are glorified tic-tac-toe programs. They're not "thinking" about how to win at the game, they are simply exhaustively searching the solution space to find moves whose branches give them the best chance of winning. Tic-tac-toe always ends up a tie with semi-competent players because its within the capability of humans to see the entire solution space and avoid moves which result in a loss. Computers are simply able to search a much larger solution space in the same amount of time as a human.
    • by Dutch Gun ( 899105 ) on Wednesday July 12, 2017 @12:22PM (#54794253)

      No, it's absolutely not about brute-force searching. The search space for Go is so massive that even the fastest computers really can't do exhaustive, brute-force searches for a solution. That's part of what made an AI winning at high-level Go such a milestone. To give you some context: the search space for Go is significantly larger than the estimated number of atoms in the universe.

      I agree that it's a bit silly to call these algorithms "AI", but they're not nearly as simplistic as you're making them out to be. To be effective, the algorithms have to do a massive amount of heuristics-based culling before it can start searching for solutions, or else it would get bogged down in the math, no matter how fast it was.

      • But for context, top chess engines added strong non-brute-force algorithms 20 years ago, and they've had pruning of bad lines for longer than that. So even when they're saying "brute force," it isn't really and doesn't add up to silly numbers like the atoms in the universe, which is just %$&^!*@.
        The problem with Go was always, according to the chess programmers, a problem of programming hours. There were simply more people working on chess software. The newer results are exactly as predicted; it is a ma

    • I remember in 1998 I downloaded a new chess program and somebody asked if computers were the end of chess. My father said, "No, and airplanes didn't end running."

  • Has anyone read "Artificial Intelligence with Python" [amzn.to] by Prateek Joshi? Is it any good?
    • by Tablizer ( 95088 )

      I keep seeing this. I suspect a spam campaign.

      • I keep seeing this. I suspect a spam campaign.

        Have you read the book?

    • Python is 50 times slower than C++, but Python also allows to write in an easier way algorithms that are exponentially faster. O( n ) >> O( 50 log (n)) ..
      • Python is 50 times slower than C++, but Python also allows to write in an easier way algorithms that are exponentially faster. O( n ) >> O( 50 log (n)) ..

        If speed becomes a factor, Cython [cython.org] comes into play

      • I would use plain C or Ruby or something, but in any case, if you realize that speed is non-optimal and you decide it matters, you just move the algorithm into a library written in C/C++ and now your scripting language is as fast as anything again.

        They solved this problem in the 1990s. Probably earlier, too, but it does get re-invented constantly.

  • how many ea coins will they get from that?

  • South Korea is now setting its sights on making AI that can play soccer

    Playing soccer (aka football) is the easy bit: kick and miss.

    But will the AI be able to convincingly roll around on the ground just inside the penalty box? And more importantly will it be able to deal with the paparazzi and make vacuous statements like "it was a game of two halves" and "if we'd only scored more, we could have won".

  • were made by an octopus [wikipedia.org].
  • Well, the RoboCup has it's goals set way higher for decades now!

    Id like to see Robo Baseball! Seems like a lower-hanging fruit.
  • "The first official RoboCup games and conference was held in 1997 with great success. Over 40 teams participated (real and simulation combined), and over 5,000 spectators attended." [http://www.robocup.org/a_brief_history_of_robocup]

    By "real and simulation" they mean that AI has been playing soccer for more than 20 years, both in simulation (as in TFA) and in real, physical robots.
    Welcome to the world of AI research, South Korean!

    (To be fair, it's probably some reporter's snafu, rather than a researcher's.)

  • Talking about soccer, the football game played with feet: can't bear watching a game.
    Overpaid players who miss everything they can, and who prefer to cheat, pulling shirts or worse, instead of fighting for the ball and the goal.
    Disgusting.

  • ... now that would be interesting. Give, they'd probably kick the ball at 300km/h, unstoppable for mere mortals, scoring goals from every position and across the field.

    But it would be a neat step forward in engineering none-the-less.

  • was of some dude curled up in a fetal position on the ground, screaming and holding his shin.

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