Dead Wrong® with Johan Norberg – Chess and Computers

Dead Wrong® with Johan Norberg – Chess and Computers

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A computer program recently taught itself how to play chess. And after four hours- it was so good that it beat the hitherto best chess computer by 28 wins against 0 defeats. Our robot overlords are here, and we humans have nothing to contribute. Only that’s dead wrong- at least for the foreseeable future. Yes, chess computers beat humans, but in freestyle chess tournaments, where you can construct your team in any way you wish, humans with computers beat computers. Players in such “centaur teams”- they don’t have to strain their memory or work hard to avoid simple mistakes because the computer helps them to avoid that. Instead they can focus on their unique human contribution, overall strategy and improvisation. And if computers can turn us into better chess players, perhaps they can also turn us into better doctors, journalists and teachers. They can handle the data, so that we can focus on creativity and face-to-face encounters. It’s not that computers take jobs from workers; it’s that workers with computers take jobs from workers without computers. Since 1980, occupations with an above-average use of computers have expanded almost one percent faster than others. Yes, our robot overlords are impressive. And if you can’t beat them, join them.

5 thoughts on “Dead Wrong® with Johan Norberg – Chess and Computers

  • Leandro Lima Post author


  • grantcivyt Post author

    What Johan is saying about human-computer teams being best has been true and known for some time. However, the chess computer he's referring to here is unlike any prior. AlphaZero plays chess with beautiful sophistication and nuance, and it is truly unclear that a human mind can add to it. This is in sharp contrast to existing chess engines, which have been described as follows (paraphrasing the reigning world champion):

    "Playing against a computer is like playing against a complete idiot that beats you every time."

    AlphaZero is no idiot.

  • Cl Vsr Post author

    Really nice program!

  • TGGeko Post author

    Source on these freestyle tournaments?

  • Brother Kellymatthew Barnes Post author

    "I Robot" – The Alan Parsons Project.

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