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 Post subject: Yoon buys an AI go board
Post #1 Posted: Mon Jan 13, 2020 7:45 pm 
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This was two days ago so ancient history in web time:

https://youtu.be/uo-kI9Ncq_U

The clip has sparked interesting discussions on FB and reddit with references to threads here dating back two or more years.

Apparently the thing is readily available and costs about Us$800 but many questions remain unanswered since no one has yet translated the manufacture’s site from the Chinese. Yoon promises more information and specifics in upcoming video clips. Seems to require proprietary chip-embedded plastic stones and WiFi to either talk to an AI program running on the owner’s PC or to communicate with the AI mothership. No word on interface languages other than Chinese.


I’d like to have one of these boards but I’d need an English interface and a Macintosh version of the application running the AI. Presumably, the more polished application would include training and education tools such as joseki, tsumego, libraries of pro games, all that stuff.

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I play go, I ride a recumbent, of course I use Macintosh.

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 Post subject: Re: Yoon buys an AI go board
Post #2 Posted: Tue Jan 14, 2020 4:24 pm 
Oza
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This seems to be it:
http://www.izis.cn/Client/Home/chessinfo.html

And on FB Young Soon Yoon writes:
Quote:
KIBA Baduk has a sale exklusive right. If you have any questions, please visit here https://www.facebook.com/KIBA-Kwonkapyong-International-Baduk-Academy-684728161554050/ and ask them. kibabaduk@naver.com

I’d be very surprised if it is compatible to anything Mac.

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 Post subject: Re: Yoon buys an AI go board
Post #3 Posted: Tue Jan 14, 2020 8:56 pm 
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I would think the exclusive sales rights for KIBA is only for Korea. I'd be very surprised if a Chinese manufacturer gave exclusive worldwide sales rights to KIBA unless it is for a version which uses or speaks Korean language.

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 Post subject: Re: Yoon buys an AI go board
Post #4 Posted: Wed Jan 15, 2020 7:55 pm 
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Maybe no one else is a jazzed about this thing as I am. I can see this as a solid way to get kids interested in go. Once there is an English interface, I think the sales potential in the States could be several thousand units with the right promotion campaign. Maybe a bold new 21st Century Hikaru No Go tie-in with Sai's consciousness getting grabbed out of the ether by an unscrupulous programmer, embedded in the AI, and it makes itself known only to Hikaru who figures it out because he recognizes Sai's playing style. It could be awesome, I tell ya, awesome.

Serious questions: Does anyone have the connections or the chops to buy a wholesale quantity of these things at wholesale prices? What would be the minimum order to get wholesale pricing? I'm thinking maybe twenty units. I'd be good for two early release English language units at wholesale.

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 Post subject: Re: Yoon buys an AI go board
Post #5 Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2020 4:54 am 
Oza

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Quite a few years back there was something a bit similar in Japan. It was a free-standing go board where you entered a card containing games you could play over. As I recall, lights flashed to show you where to play the next move. Nowadays most people would smirk at the concept, but this was before PCs had had much of an impact and there were no databases.

I believe it was a succès d'estime but a major commercial flop.

The same commercial factors may apply here: people will wait for a more affordable and practical solution, i.e. a PC. Already there is a gpu (high-spec?) machine with Leela built in on sale in Japan, called Go Master. It's about $2000. I haven't looked into it and have no idea why people would want to buy that rather than install Leela (and of course any future update) for free on their own PC.

However, one idea we discussed in London as a way of spending money from the T Mark Hall Fund was to set up fixed glass-topped tables in shopping malls and so on where people could come in and play against a computer for free (it could be chess or shogi etc as well as go, of course) in return for the "ad" of being told where you could play human go in London. It never got past the talking stage because the whole shebang is run by volunteers whose time is already overstretched. Although I think Vienna may have already pioneered a similar concept themselves, we felt we needed too much effort just to design the equipment robustly enough for a shopping mall. Maybe this new machine would eliminate most of the design effort, but I would expect the maintenance aspect to still be a major headache. And Trump might want to impose sanctions on European shopping malls for using Chinese electronic equipment :)

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 Post subject: Re: Yoon buys an AI go board
Post #6 Posted: Thu Jan 16, 2020 7:08 am 
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I'm also old enough to recall the handheld Go Master that someone (was it David Fotland?) tried to make happen back in the 1980s (1990s?). Maybe I don't recall it so well! I would have bought one in an instant if it had become a viable product and affordable, or at least proportionately priced (larger screen, proprietary software, etc) with the handheld game systems of that era.

One of the things this board-based system has over other computer games, and what I think appeals to children of a certain age, is the look and feel of an adult game--a real game like pool, poker, or cribbage (?), and it's got cool gaming elements like Battleship, Othello, and Risk.

Yes, I can easily see myself visiting a grade school chess club armed with a dozen of these AI baduk/weiqi/go boards. I'd deliver a short powerpoint lecture highlighted with some Hikaru No Go clips and then, with the help of the chess club's adult sponsors, turn the children loose. One out of every ten of those kids would be back for a second instructional session and I'd get two or three out of every ten of those interested enough to play go along with or instead of chess. A two or three percent return rate is one hundred percent better than we're doing now! That's a large enough go-related activity base to get a hook into interactions with parents and other adults and to perhaps find some closet go players.

All I need is an English machine interface and, guessing, about $20,000.

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