Arago’s Artificial Intelligence Platform HIRO™ Beats Human Players at Freeciv – Shows Highest Degree of Decision Making Capability for AI

  • The Freeciv Challenge Unveiled at TechCrunch Disrupt London 2016
    Shows Machine Reasoning Behind Complex Decisions, Not Just Brute Force

a pioneer in artificial intelligence (AI) and leader in intelligent IT
automation based in Frankfurt and New York City, today announced that
HIRO (Human Intelligence Robotically Optimized)™, the company’s flagship
AI technology capable of learning, understanding and reasoning to solve
problems, has defeated human players in the computer game Freeciv, after
it became an unbeatable opponent for the game’s built-in AI. Freeciv is
a turn-based strategy game inspired by the popular Sid Meier’s
series. This signifies a major step forward in one of
the challenges in the development of AI: evolving decisions from brute
force testing, to more nuanced role playing without defined outcomes for

The announcement, which included game footage screened Tuesday afternoon
at TechCrunch’s
Disrupt London 2016
, represents an exponential advancement in
machine intelligence due to Freeciv’s game complexity. With all the
different options, opponents acting unpredictably, and changing
parameters throughout the whole game, there are more than 10 to the
power of 15,000 possible games imaginable – for comparison there are
only 10 to the power of 80 atoms in the universe. Advancements from
simple trial and error represented by machine learning, to combining
this approach with machine reasoning that takes the “why” into account
was Arago’s goal.

“It has become good tradition to showcase the advancement in AI through
playing games; starting at chess to Jeopardy to Atari games to Go.
Winning in a strategy game like Freeciv is the next logical step,” said
Arago founder and CEO Chris Boos.“Beyond the simple growth of
complexity, Freeciv introduces additional layers of realism by adding
chance and no longer having god-like information about the game. HIRO
required less time and resources for training than previous AI
showcases. We’re able to demonstrate the power of the hybrid platform
based on machine reasoning enhanced with machine learning underlying the
HIRO system.“

On top of the scientific showcase of winning Freeciv the same HIRO
system is used by global enterprises for automating IT operations across
the entire IT stack. Commercially, the HIRO platform amplifies human IT
experts through continuous learning and built-in self-optimization.

Faster Learning through Optimized Efficiency

Despite the fact that Freeciv holds an exponential amount more moves
than Go, Arago’s HIRO actually required less data and trainers in order
to advance to victory. Winning against human players is a major
milestone, because it shows that hybrid systems of machine reasoning and
machine learning can reuse their knowledge and though easily be trained
by different independent coaches simultaneously.

“A common misconception with regards to AI can stem from popular culture
and fantasy, that we are looking for cognizance or singularity,” added
Boos. “In fact, we are looking for machines with memory and adaptation
for long-term planning. These properties give HIRO the capabilities to
excel in very complex situations such as IT system management and also
in Freeciv.”

Boos spoke with former TechCrunch Editor John Biggs onstage at
TechCrunch’s annual Disrupt conference in London where the crowd was
treated to a time-lapsed encapsulation of wins against humans and other
outstanding scenes from game play.

About Arago

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For Arago
Ryan Sommer
Director, MaintainPR