AlphaGo achieves near-divine status

South Korean Go Association awards Google's AI highest-possible professional ranking

Google's boardgame-playing AI, AlphaGo, has been awarded an honorary ninth dan in Go by the game's South Korean professional body.

AlphaGo beat South Korean grandmaster Lee Se-dol, who is also a ninth dan and considered one of the finest modern players of the ancient Chinese game, in three straight matches out of five.

Although the fifth and final match is yet to be completed, the computer program was awarded the honorary title by the South Korean Go Association in recognition of its "sincere efforts" to master the game's Taoist foundations and achieve a level "close to divinity", according to The Japan Times.

"Neither man nor machine has ever received an honorary professional dan certificate to date, although many people have received honorary amateur certificates," a spokeswoman for the association told The Japan Times.

Advertisement - Article continues below

Go is thought to be at least 3,000 years old and is considered a better test of AI's capabilities than chess as it is more complicated - reputedly having more potential moves than there are atoms in the observable universe.

Players use either black or white tokens in an attempt to try and capture as much of the Go board's territory as possible. The player who is able to dominate the board wins.

Lee Se-dol, who is ranked number two in the world, lost three games in a row to AlphaGo, meaning the computer has already won the tournament. However, Lee fought back to win the fourth bout. At the time of writing, the fifth and final game of the tournament was still underway.

Featured Resources

The essential guide to cloud-based backup and disaster recovery

Support business continuity by building a holistic emergency plan

Download now

Trends in modern data protection

A comprehensive view of the data protection landscape

Download now

How do vulnerabilities get into software?

90% of security incidents result from exploits against defects in software

Download now

Delivering the future of work - now

The CIO’s guide to building the unified digital workspace for today’s hybrid and multi-cloud strategies.

Download now

Most Popular

Microsoft Azure

Microsoft, not Amazon, is going to win the cloud wars

30 Nov 2019

Raspberry Pi 4 owners complain of broken Wi-Fi when using HDMI

29 Nov 2019
Mobile Phones

Samsung sails past Apple's market share despite smartphone market slump

28 Nov 2019
Google Android

Samsung Galaxy A90 5G review: Simply the best value 5G phone

22 Nov 2019