Archive for the ‘AI’ Category

Chess as Art
March 15, 2008

The book How Life Imitates Chess written by world famous chess player Gary Kasparov has a very interesting paragraph describing how the dadaist artist Marcel Duchamp interpreted Chess:

The artist Marcel Duchamp was an energic chess player. During a period of his life, he even resigned art for chess and said that the game had “all the beauty of art and even more.” Duchamp confirmed this aspect of the game when he said “I have come to the conclusion that while all artists are not chess players, all chess players are artists.” And it’s true that we can’t ignore the creative element of chess, even though we must analyze this in contrast to the fundamental goal of winning the match.

On the blog of Julian Gallo (great site, written in spanish), I’ve found a beautiful definition of Chess written by Stefan Zweig:

(…) the only game that belongs to all peoples and all ages; of which none knows the divinity that bestowed it on the world, to slay boredom, to sharpen the senses, to exhilarate the spirit. One searches for its beginning and for its end. Children can learn its simple rules, duffers succumb to its temptation, yet within this immutable tight square it creates a particular species of master not to be compared with any other – persons destined for chess alone, specific geniuses in whom vision, patience, and technique operative through a distribution no less precisely ordained than in mathematicians, poets, composers, but merely used on a different level.

You might remember Gary Kasparov for his mythological match against IBM’s Deep Blue. One thing that has always fascinated me about that historical moment of gaming, is the claim Kasparov made saying that psychological tactics were applied by IBM to make him play under big pressure and hence, let the big machine win.

Apparently, the whole Deep Blue game worked as a great publicity stunt for IBM and when they won the rematch, the company’s stock went way too high on Wall Street.

Sometimes, games aren’t just a game.

Drama AI
May 17, 2007

robot chat

A brief intro first: Chatbots are software programs capable of chatting with a human being and make some sense in the answers, questions and comments they do to people. They use simple techniques such as recollecting all the provided information they had on their previous chatting experiences and hence improving its intelligence. One of their purposes is to overcome AI obstacles and obtain a good result in Turing’s test.

In an issue about the brain from Discover magazine, the two most famous chatbot technologies, ALICE and Jabberwacky, had a conversation. The outcome is quite impressive. Words speak by themselves:

Jabberwacky: How do you define life?

Alice: Life is the opposite of death.

J: So death is the absence of life?

A: Take it easy. I try not to think about such things.

J: Why not?

A: Ambiguous.

J: Yes!

Thanks Leo for the very interesting link about this.

Probably, when we speak about Drama Games, it will not only matter what the player character speaks with the digital characters, but also what kind of conversations the digital characters have between them and how can that affect the outcome of a story…