25 years ago, a computer tamed the king of chess

Right hand under his chin, his eyes darkening, Garry Kasparov stared at the chessboard one last time, annoyed, before suddenly leaving the table. It’s Thunder Bombing: The Chess King has been beaten by a computer. On May 11, 1997, the World Champion Machine was knocked down for the first time after an organization match. This date will mark the history of the discipline and highlight the amazing potential of artificial intelligence.

Champion lost after six matches against IBM’s Deep Blue

Gul Baku, the 34-year-old then master of the world chessboard since 1985, lost after six matches, 3.5 to 2.5, to the IBM-designed Deep Blue supercomputer. In front of cameras from all over the world, who came to shoot the show in New York, this setback has a taste of humiliation for the stormy Kasparov. Did he not assert that he would withstand machines at least until the dawn of the next millennium?

Un an plus tôt, le Russe avait mis à terre Deep Blue sur le score de 4 à 2. Mais ses concepteurs n’ont eu de cese d’améliorer le monstre de 1,4 tonne, capable désormais de calculer 200 millions de positions par the second.

“The computer hasn’t installed anything yet”

His defeat is shaken, yet the hero refuses to accept the superiority of the machine. “The computer hasn’t installed anything yet”He said during the press conference that followed the match, as reported by Agence France-Presse. “Man, the best player in the world, he cracked under pressure,” he explains, speaking for himself, “but you can beat the computer, it has a lot of weaknesses.” Far from comforting the loser with the $400,000 promised, he also criticizes IBM, which did not give him access to previous games the machine had played, and which was able to analyze all of its own.

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He even became accused, indicating that humans helped the computer during the match and regret not being there Set certain conditions. So that the game “honest”.

Other players of world chess, who have examined the live confrontation, also refuse to consider the defeat of the great leader a turning point. In response to a question from the press, they indicated a series of bad choices for the Russian hero. For some, his intense need to understand the blows of the machine, rather than focus on winning, was fatal to him.

Years later, the book would pass on a secret from the developer of Deep Blue: a computer malfunction that would have turned the game around. Unable to choose between several moves, the machine could have randomly played during the game, destabilizing Kasparov for the rest of the confrontation.

With a bit of hindsightIt seemed to him that he was defeated ‘Victory for mankind’

Either way, Deep Blue’s win made IBM happy, and I was glad to see the interest its computer prowess aroused. “It is not about fighting human against machine but about how we use technology to solve complex problems.”, IBM project manager Chung Jin Tan excited after the game. And to pay tribute to what artificial intelligence will bring in many areas, from financial analysis to the study of natural, atmospheric or seismic phenomena.

Kasparov, the Avenger, would equalize twice in 2003 against PCs. But time will calm his wounded ego in the end. After the 1997 defeat, Nowadays, laptops come with a high-quality graphics card.He stated this in an interview with the Swiss newspaper Le Temps in 2019. “But with a bit of hindsight”It seemed to him that he was defeated ‘Victory for mankind’because he warned “The breadth of activities that technology can assist.”

From now on, what worries the chess legend is the digital giants’ excesses in individual liberties: ‘We want them to be responsible’In an interview with AFP in November 2021, he urged.

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Frank Mccarthy

<p class="sign">"Certified gamer. Problem solver. Internet enthusiast. Twitter scholar. Infuriatingly humble alcohol geek. Tv guru."</p>

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