Google’s AlphaGo computer has beaten European Go champion Fan Hui five games to zero making it the first computer to ever beat a professional Go player. This marks a significant milestone in artificial intelligence development because although the game has a very simple set of rules, the number of possible moves per turn for each player makes it particularly difficult for a computer to analyze.
In a video by Google’s DeepMind project, AlphaGo team member Demis Hassabis compares the computer’s win to the 1997 match between chess master Garry Kasparov and the IBM computer Deep Blue. But as Hassabis, who is a Candidate Master level chess player himself explains, while there are about twenty logical moves per turn for a chess game, in Go there are about two hundred.
Hassabis also appears in a piece by Nature Video that gets into more detail about how Go is played and why it presents such a challenge for computers and programmers.