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Intentionally Imperfect A.I.

July 9, 2008 5 comments

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Skill Level: Advanced user (7)

I’ve decided to write about something a little more advanced than I usually do.  It is now posted in the GMC Experts forum, if you would rather reply there.

Anyways, many of us who create video games can write Artificial Intelligence to instruct the computer to play a game perfectly and unbeatably. This isn’t really a good thing, though, as it essentially ruins the game experience; after all, the player has to be able to win. But if one programs it so, the computer mind can be theoretically perfect; it won’t make spur of the moment mistakes, it won’t misjudge anything, and it won’t have accidents.

Imagine a computer playing pacman. It knows where the ghosts are and (if so programmed) it can likely calculate a perfect plan of escape every time. What if, however, we want the computer to emulate a real person? Most people probably won’t know for sure which direction to go to retain victory every time; they will occasionally make mistakes leading Pacman to his ghostly doom. The human mind doesn’t always work that quickly or that accurately.

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