One of the key differences between Go and chess is that a computer can brute force the latter. In chess there are only 32 total pieces and 64 squares on a board, and each piece can only move in certain ways, making it possible for a computer to simulate all possible configurations. Go is more complex because the number of board configurations is more than the number of atoms in the universe, which means a computer needs to learn how to play the game like a human.
DeepMind's Alpha Go did that and was able to defeat European Go champion Fan Hui fives games to zero in a recent match! In March, the computer will take on Lee Sedol, one of the best players in the world.
Go is an ancient Chinese board game, often viewed as the game computers could never play. Now researchers from Google-owned company DeepMind have proven the naysayers wrong, creating an artificial intelligence - called AlphaGo – which has beaten a professional Go player for the first time. In this Nature Video, we go behind the scenes to learn about the game, the programme and what this means for the future of AI.