[Beowulf] Go-playing machines

Peter St. John peter.st.john at gmail.com
Tue Jun 24 09:20:25 PDT 2008


Programming a computer to play Go (an Asian strategy boardgame) has been
difficult; some people say it's proof that Go is better or harder than
chess, since computers can beat masters at chess but struggle at Go. (I
think that statistically a game of go is about equivalent to a two-game
match of chess; both games empty your brain quickly of course). My view is
that while go may be somewhat harder to reduce to tree-searching, the main
advantage of computer chess was an early start, e.g. von Neumann.

This article:
 http://www.usgo.org/resources/downloads/CogApdx%20II-2.pdf
describes recent trends in computer Go and mentions a 32-node cluster, 8
cores per node. Apparently MPI parallelization is recent for them and they
are making good progress.

Peter

The game Go: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Go_%28game%29
AGA (American Go Association): http://www.usgo.org
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