I’ve been there: AI has mastered chess | So Good News


Commentator 2: Deep Blue! Kasparov resigned after moving C4!


Jennifer: I’m Jennifer Strong, and that’s it When I Was— an oral history project that chronicles breakthroughs and watershed moments in AI and computing as told by eyewitnesses. In this episode, we meet Garry Kasparov on the other side of that chessboard.

Garry Kasparov: It was definitely what it described on the cover Newsweek Big books such as the last position of the brain and the moon landing contain a lot of mythology. I have to admit, I’ve been involved in these rants myself. It took years of reflection and examination to determine my impressions and reality at the time. I wrote about this painful process in my 2017 book, Deep thinking: When machine intelligence ends and human creativity begins, won’t it be easy for a chess machine? They don’t care whether we win or lose. They don’t even know they are playing chess. But as a man and a world champion, I had many emotions sitting in front of the car.

Garry Kasparov: Will he play like the previous machines or will he play like God? I was used to reading the body language of my opponents. It is not useful to sit in front of a computer engineer who did not understand for the machine he made. I was also used to deep preparation based on my opponents’ previous games and tendencies. Against Deep Blue, they kept practice games secret, and that went out the window as well. And, of course, they can enhance its strengths and change the chess personality with the click of a few buttons. If I can. My experience was difficult to explain because I was actually the first knowledge worker to have a machine threaten my job.

Garry Kasparov: Most AI and experiences before it were fraudulent or very primitive. For example, in the 1940s, the replacement of human lift operators with automatic push elevators caused great alarm. In fact, the technology of automatic elevators has existed for decades, but people were afraid of them. In addition, there is a strong association of lift operators. Today there are many easy comparisons. Sitting across from Deep Blues was normal in a way. I’ve been eating on a checkerboard since I was six, technically it was a little different for me, but it was very different. I feel like most people feel the first time they get into a self-driving car or receive a diagnosis from an AI doctor.

Garry Kasparov: These new wonders are far from my bosom enemy. Sure, the machine I lost to in the 1997 rematch, sometimes called Deep Blue, was about as smart as your alarm clock—a $10 million alarm clock—but nothing like previous generations thought. This is not to detract from their Everest summiteer achievement, defeating the world chess champion. There was a reason for its global attention. I want to put into context what we mean by intellectual. Deep Blue did something very well with hundreds of specialized bosses, but that was enough to compete at the world champion level, because chess is deep but not deep. Deep Blue didn’t need to solve the chessboard. He needed to play better than six games, and a quick brute force analysis proved more than enough. It took me a while to absorb the most important lessons of my loss, and they had nothing to do with chess and nothing to do with the future of the human-machine relationship.

Garry Kasparov: The period in which we compete with intelligent machines is so small, almost insignificant, that we value it so much instead of the next alternative machine dominance that it really matters. AI automation, for example, replaces the human workplace and there is little time spent working with people. But that won’t last long, and after forever machines will do it better, cheaper, and safer. This is human progress. It makes our lives better. Not to be harsh on those who lost their jobs, but even there, study after study shows that industries with more automation and AI do better with more jobs and higher wages. The alternative is stagnation.


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