GOOD

Next Step in Artificial Intelligence: Mastering Mario Bros.


The quest for artificial intelligence continues with a new competition to design computer programs that can play the classic NES Super Mario Bros. game. Organized by Julian Togelius at the IT University of Copenhagen, the Mario AI Competition will pit various Mario-playing programs against each other.Some of the entrants will use established mathematical techniques to learn regularities and relationships in the game (running into a Koopa Trooper is bad, e.g.). Other entrants will be the product of genetic algorithms: programs that have "evolved" to play the game well. From New Scientist:Evolving a better Mario would typically involve creating a population of programs each able to play the game, but in ways that differ slightly from each other. Software would pit them all against the game and combine elements of the most successful to "father" a new generation of Marios, each with some random mutations of their own included.So the competition will be a sort of showdown between different strategies for creating game-playing robots. And before we know it, we'll have robots that can waste the whole day playing World of Warcraft, powered by Chee-tos and Red Bull.
Articles
via The Hill / Twitter

President Trump's appearance at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland was a mixed bag.

The theme of the event was climate change, but Trump chose to use his 30 minutes of speaking time to brag about the "spectacular" U.S. economy and encouraged world leaders to invest in America.

He didn't mention climate change once.

Keep Reading
The Planet
via David Leavitt / Twitter and RealTargetTori / Twitter

Last Friday, GOOD reported on an infuriating incident that went down at a Massachusetts Target.

A Target manager who's come to be known as "Target Tori," was harassed by Twitter troll David Leavitt for not selling him an $89 Oral-B Pro 5000 toothbrush for a penny.

He describes himself as a "multimedia journalist who has worked for CBS, AXS, Yahoo, and others."

Keep Reading
Communities

The Australian bushfires have claimed 27 human lives, an estimated 1 billion animals are feared dead, and thousands of properties have been completely decimated.

The fires were caused by extreme heat and dryness, the result of 2019 being the country's hottest year on record, with average temperatures 1.52C above the 1961-1990 average.

The area hit hardest by the fires, New South Wales, also had its hottest year on record, with temperatures rising 1.95C above average.

Keep Reading
The Planet