Poker Robot Likely Hired to Explore Military Strategy for the Pentagon

2 years ago
Poker Robot Likely Hired to Explore Military Strategy for the Pentagon
01 Feb

Libratus was hired by the Pentagon for over $10 million, possibly to explore military strategy and planning. 

Libratus shocked the world in 2017 by decisively taking down Jason Les, Dong Kim, Daniel McCauley and Jimmy Chou in a series of heads up matches. Built at the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center, it showed the ability to bluff and improve its betting strategy in ways that surprised even its own creators. 

While some in the poker community worried about robots taking their jobs, the rest of the world celebrated this leap in AI technology as an incredible achievement for humanity and our understanding of decision making. 

The possible applications for Libratus are huge, its poker skills could be translated into a myriad of other areas like medical planning and cybersecurity. It’s basically a Game Theory problem-solving machine, and it has the potential to usher a better future for humanity. Naturally, someone at the Pentagon had to use it to find more effective ways of war.

Wired reports that public records show that Strategy Robot, the company that owns Libratus, received $10million in a 2-year contract with the US Army to support the Pentagon’s Defense Innovation Unit. Wired asked for specifics but was denied by both the Pentagon and Strategy Robot though the latter was founded in an effort to adapt Libratus for simulations used to explore military strategy and planning.

This is part of an overall AI Tech push by the Pentagon in response to similar projects in China and Russia. President Vladimir Putin’s now famous quote “Whoever leads in AI will become the ruler of the world.” appears to signal a new kind of arms race.

This has prompted concerns by Google’s AI researchers (not the company itself, however), which Libratus Project leader and Strategy Robot founder Tuomas Sandholm dismissed as overblown, reportedly saying:

“I think AI’s going to make the world a much safer place.”

Revealing himself as the only science nerd in existence that never watched Star Trek:

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