Human players beat AI robots in curling game

By Yonhap
  • Published : Mar 8, 2018 - 21:19
  • Updated : Mar 8, 2018 - 21:19

ICHEON -- Human players handily beat robots with artificial intelligence (AI) in a curling game on Thursday, despite the machines demonstrating evolving skill levels.

At a competition hosted by the Ministry of Science and ICT, two robots named Curly exhibited considerable skill in placing stones on target and showed the ability to formulate strategy.

Two robots named Curly face off against a human team at a competition hosted by the Ministry of Science and ICT in Icheon Thursday. (Yonhap)

The robots were developed by some 60 researchers from eight institutions, including Korea University and the Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST), the ministry said. 

The machines were embedded with "CurlBrain" software that instructs the robots to throw stones in a way to win the game, the ministry said.

"There are more factors that Curly has to take into account, such as the number of stones and ice, when making strategy, compared with AlphaGo," said a researcher. AlphaGo is a Google Inc. AI program that defeated South Korean Go master Lee Se-dol in 2016.

Curly has so far studied a total of some 160,000 throws from 1,321 curling games, the researchers said. The AI robot has 65 percent success rate in draws, moves that aim to place the stone on target, and 80 percent success rate in a take-out. A take-out is a move to push out an opponent's stone. (Yonhap)