Aug 19, 2009

Super Mario Bros. Tests Modern A.I.

According to MSNBC, researches in Copenhagen have begun using NES games to test the constraints of artificial intelligence.

Human players might have defeated Bowser decades ago in the original "Super MarioBrothers" video game, but a new competition is pitting computers against Koopa Troopas to save Princess Toadstool.

The specific levels, however, will be new to human and computer players alike. Togelius has developed a random level generator that will create dozens of new, never-before-seen levels. To the possible chagrin of frustrated human players, the original "Super Mario Brothers" levels would likely be too easy for a computer, said Togelius."

Apparently, the choices afforded players in video games are exactly the kinds of challenges that A.I. models need to be able to traverse to be considered actual A.I., and the researchers say the A.I. has made some progress. "Without programming, the A.I. learned to grab the shells from defeated enemies and use them to destroy other enemies."

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