Blog: What was the final message or theme of the documentary?
In this documentary, we were shown the limitless potential of AI. Look AlphaGo, an AI player defeating the 18-time world champion, Lee Se-dol. After the 5 games, Alpha Go has showcased its skill to the world, proving that AI is able to play the game of Go at the top level.
In the documentary, Lee Se-dol says that he has learned a lot from Alpha Go. Not just about what kind of strategies or moves can be played under certain circumstances, but also about the way of how machines play the game of Go.
Normally, in the game of Go, as humans we would try to get as much territory as possible so that we can secure the game in the early stages of the game. But how AlphaGo defines the way of winning the game is different. What Alpha Go does is aiming to get 1 or more territories than its opponent. Alpha Go changed our perspective of playing the game of Go. Hence, using Alpha Go as an example, machines are actually capable and qualified to teach us humans more ways, styles, strategies and tactics of playing the game. Go professional players were taught ‘some moves shouldn’t be done’ or ’you should do these move under these circumstances’ when they started playing, but Alpha Go has showed us the broad possibilities of playing Go. It allows the players to play more freely without restricting their imaginations.
In the documentary, it is stated that an AI capable to play the game of Go at the professional level needs at least another 10–12 years. But in 2016, Deepmind is able to create AlphaGo which defeats professional Go players. This is because we as humans tend to think linearly, whereas our technology and AI development actually rises at an exponential rate. We need to change the way of how we think of the development of technology.
When AlphaGo went up against the world champion, Lee Se-dol, everyone believed that Lee Se-dol would be up 5–0 against AlphaGo in a 5 game series without any doubt. This is because humans have the pride of being the most intelligent species on earth. In addition, most of the members in the team who created AlphaGo are not professional Go players. Everyone believed that a world champion would not lose to a mere AI player, and guess what happened? AlphaGo is up 4–1 against Lee Se-dol. In the documentary, Lee Se-dol lost 3 straight games in the first 3 games. Everyone who witnessed this felt disappointed and sad because they would never thought that a machine would be able to defeated a human. But when Lee Se-dol won the 4th game, everyone(excluding the Deepmind) were happy and enjoyed the win. It’s natural that humans would want humans to win, especially up against an AI player. Actually, one of the members of the team who created AlphaGo felt down when she saw the defeat of Lee Se-dol as she saw this as a lost of a human versus a machine. But the funny thing is that, Alpha Go is also created by human.
The topic about AI conquering the world in the future has been popular for a long time. After the game, more people believed that AI machines would make humanity extinct because they’re afraid of AI developing the mindset of conquering the world.
The truth is, humans are always afraid of things they did not know, understand or seen before. Most people out there don’t understand how AI works. I believe that if more people studied and understand AI, they would know the AI conquering the world is pretty much preventable as long as we humans know what we are doing. In fact, we humans can learn a lot more and discover more things through AI. (Demis, 2016)
Demis, H.(2016, March 16). What we learned in Seoul with AlphaGo. Retrieved from