Deep Blue vs. Kasparov Anniversary

Posted on March 8, 2007. Filed under: Chess, History, News, Technology |

This coming may will be the tenth anniversary of Gary Kasparov’s famous defeat to Deep Blue, a supercomputer designed specifically to beat him by a team of engineers and chess masters. I attended the famous match, which was held in the Equitable Center in New York City. I say I attended, but actually there were no spectators in the room with Kasparov and the computer: I watched the match on video in an auditorium with dozens of other people. If my memory serves me, Kasparov was startled by one particular move by Deep Blue, a move which seemed to be uncharacteristic of a computer. After Kasparov resigned he came down to the auditorium to speak. He basically accused the IBM team of cheating and coaching the computer to make a particular move. He said something that stuck in my memory: “he saw the hand of God.”

It would be interesting to learn what the state of the art is in chess programs today. Are they much better than they were ten years ago or are they just marginally so? Would Kasparov be willing to play another supercomputer? I am sure that were a rematch to be held today it would be streamed live on the Internet.

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