Top Go Player Lee Sodol Retiring Because of AI Dominance

South Korean Go master Lee Se-dol retired from professional Go competition. Lee said that he realized that he would not be at the top even if he was the number one human player. AlphaGo beat Lee in 2016. AlphaZero has beaten AlphaGo in 100 matches in a row.

Lee’s will play against the AI Go progrma HanDol. The program was developed by South Korea’s NHN Entertainment Corp in 2018. HanDol has already defeated South Korea’s top five Go players.

In the first match, Lee will be given an advantage of two stones.

19 thoughts on “Top Go Player Lee Sodol Retiring Because of AI Dominance”

  1. While, as is widely known, 99% of the commenters on the internet are paid stooges working for the USA, Russia, China, the international Jewish conspiracy, the international patriarchal conspiracy, the revolutionary gay conspiracy, Elon Musk, anti-Musk short sellers or Disney, I am indeed one of the rare individuals who just does this for fun.

  2. NO. This is the message that you chooses to take but not the one that is being conveyed in this context. Your responses do not make much point. Are you writing out of boredom?

  3. I agree with you, but there is an element your analogy does not encompass. These people you mention don’t have machines actually looking over their shoulder telling the world how stupid, slow and weak they are either. Every GO, Chess, or Shogi move is often scrutinized in real-time on the internet for everyone to see what should have been played. Ego and face-saving could be a factor in the departure of players. So culture could be a factor. East Asians often feel shame profoundly. While Western players will just say “mistakes were made”. However, the top Chinese Chess GM Liren Ding has amazing objectivity even if it might mean he is unflatering to himself. Amazing guy. Could be a future world champion.

  4. These are people who are always open to seing things differently…that is chess at a high level. If anything, with experience you learn to recognize more patterns and such especially in less common endings. And a lot of endings are not very common, because there are so many types of endings. I think it is calculation/pattern recognition speed, ease of calculation, and fatigue mostly. Often in longer tournaments or longer matches the young players stay strong longer while the older players weaken. Though I have heard that just the basic troubles of life gnawing in the back of your mind distracting takes its toll. Often younger players have parents taking care of details. The money in chess is not very big unless you have played a match for the world title. Most of the near elites still have trouble earning what they need to live reasonably. In the 90’s the US lost several GMs to ordinary careers…because there just was not enough prize money to go around. Shogi players often do well, because Japanese will watch it on TV. There are almost no Japanese FIDE chess players because there is so much more money in Shogi. Top chess player in Japan is 2421 Elo. Iceland, a country of 360,390 has 11 players stronger than that.

  5. Many women’s sport records are still held by drug cheats from the 80s and 90s. The clean athletes just can’t match them – not yet, anyway.

  6. Does this mean nobody will take up running any more, now that machines can beat them down a track? Are weight lifters aware of the existence of forklifts? Has someone told shotputters about cannons?

  7. I tend to think of age the same way as I think of an over fitted neural net. Age/experience has led to a set of “rules” that you play with and the energy / inspiration / risk required to overcome the inbuilt bias of age is too great, hence younger players are inherently riskier (euphemism for less bias) and are more open to exploring new ways to process unknown moves.

  8. So what is the message here, that Artificial intelligence is superior and we should put our mind to rest? far from it.

  9. If you are not playing for the fun/beauty of the game or at least the money, I can’t see why anyone would play professionally. Playing only to be the best? Silly. Bound to end badly. Abilities fade. Younger more brilliant geniuses show up. And, of course, AI. And then there is the fact that there can only be one best player. So anyone else making that their goal is likely to be disappointed.
    Strange. The human chess super GMs did not quit the game when the engines began to dominate. Kasparov did retire in 2005 but I think that was more to do with loosing the title and his beliefs about age. And there is something to the age thing. The top 14 players are between 21 and 37, and the top 4 are 27-29. I think Kasparov was 42 when he retired. And all the top players nowdays were prodigies. Lee Sodol is only 36. He does not appear to be aging particularly fast. Still some good years, I would think. The engines brought new life to chess. Some of these things humans can emulate. We have had several periods where it looked like chess was in draw death mode. But each time, something brought new life and made chess interesting again. The players are stronger than they have ever been, yet there are plenty of decisive games, mostly because of opening ideas engines have showed. I am sure the GO openings are being rewritten at the moment which should invigorate the game.

  10. Should women not bother competing in sports because the men’s records exceed the women’s? (I think it is merely most rather than all sports.)
    How about we just have human game competitions?

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