| Filed under War on Robots

Computer wins the Tapout off pro poker players’ backs

The human players lost $1.7 million dollars in chips to the computer. But we don’t know if they kept their $200 hoodies, sunglasses with holographic snake-eye lenses or dignity.

Humanity was counting on two factors to help us win the War on Robots — 1) psychic computer-programming powers and 2) the ability to lie about the giant electromagnet behind our back. And, thanks to artificial intelligence programmers who really wanted to a machine to win at poker, we just lost the edge on number two.

Libratus, an AI built by Carnegie Mellon University, just beat four of our species’ greatest poker players by finally perfecting the ability to out-bluff human opponents. Computers can now strategically lie about the cards they’re virtually holding with just enough truth to raise uncertainty.

But …! We still have one more advantage over Libratus and its heirs: its new poker skillset is essentially meaningless in the modern world. C’mon, Libratus — Hold’em? What is this, 2006? In technology years, that’s like the Hamster Dance winning the 2008 election.

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