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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Why a robot will never beat a human being at 40k

Recently, an AI is beating everyone at go, what people here in Korea call “baduk”. It is supposed to be a pretty complicated game. A real challenge. Not so much for a sufficiently deep neural network. 20 years ago, a different computer was beating everyone at chess. 20 years from now, will a computer be beating everyone at 40k? Depends.

40k was in its Second Edition when Deep Blue beat Gary Kasparov. It is in its Seventh Edition now. It is better or worse depending on who you ask, or in my case especially read. One thing is for certain: it is harder than chess. And, it is more complicated than go. Already, I hear objections. Let’s review two:

1) “Oh really?” one may object. “Go has a quadrillion starting moves, while 40k has a couple dozen possible scenarios with another couple dozen ways to score points. Clearly, go is the more complicated game.”

No. And the degree to which I say “no” here depends a bit on how the game is played, but let me explain. For example, if one does not premeasure all unit placement, and does not premeasure movement and range during shooting, then every placement is in fact an unknown until the final charge is measures or the critical shot declared. Not only does NOT premeasuring add to the complexity of the game, it adds to the drama of the game, the sense that one suffers or gains from the consequences of distant actions and long ranged plans, rather than reducing the experience to “live or die” rolls alone. So, where go has a lot of possible moves, and where 40k games seem less complicated by comparison, in fact dealing with uncertainty is one of the reasons that 40k is more complicated than go. When this uncertainty is reduced, either removed with tape measures, commission painters, netlists and simplifying conventions, or hidden behind dice rolls and mathhammery probabilities, then go more be more difficult to play well.

2) One might object that 40k is not “balanced” as is chess and go, so there can be no real comparison when we count all of the possible combinations and even with either side having the same points, most possible matchups will be lopsided. These aren’t games at all really, but foregone conclusions. Theater. And this has nothing to do with how good one plays the game starting turn 1. It has to do with what happens before units are even placed. Chess and go have none of this, really. One plays either assorted black or white pieces in identical number and ability. The winner is the best player. With 40k, however, the best player of the game starting turn 1 may not be the best player. Indeed, there is good reason that the best players of a game like 40k should aim to not win. This is balance.

I watch a lot of Internet battle reports. Recently, I saw two guys playing lists with things like Land Raiders and without things like Wraithknights. (Actually, Wraithknights are a special case, given the backstory I cannot understand how every Eldar player even wants to justify fielding one without a sufficient narrative binding the army. The model is sort of cool, but I digress.) The lists were balanced. The video was great fun to watch. Both players learned something. They got to use all of their models and nobody got apocalyptically blasted or d-flamer spammed by zombie robots in rented skimmers. Everybody won. Nobody lost.

One might here object “Nonsense. 40k is a game and games are about winning and losing. Clearly, someone lost, else it would not be a game.”

No. Now, again, the degree to which I can maintain my “no” answer depends on how the game is played.

Games can proceed under cooperative or under competitive umbrellas. People cooperate with each other to compete under a competitive umbrella. Under a competitive umbrella, opponents either win or lose strictly in terms of the umbrella’s dimensions. In 40k, we can think of these as victory points, even comp points, and so on. Under a cooperative umbrella, however, people can still compete but they do so differently. Specifically, opponents competing under a cooperative umbrella compete toward different ends than do actors under the competitive umbrella. Under the cooperative umbrella, winning conditions actually become how well someone helps the broader cooperative cause to flourish. If you are thinking commie-pinko Tau, sure. But actually, the story is more interesting than that.

Consider for example recent arguments that the reason – or at least one very important reason – for the development of hugely complex human social systems and all co-dependent technologies like blog-pages and so on is that human beings cooperate. Through cooperation, projects that take longer than a single human lifetime can be completed. With competition, well, the opposite ends up happening, actually.

Here, one may be tempted to equate competitive 40k with Nurgle and effectively this is true, only what people are experiencing is a sort of slow inside out rot of neglected culture, but I digress.

Section 2:

All of the above is not to say that a computer will never beat a human being in a game of 40k. Trained AIs are potentially better than human beings at everything from interpreting the rules in order to exploit loopholes to ruthlessly winning “the” game. Sure, some things about the way is played may have to change a bit. Some folks may have to get a new umbrella.

But, sure, in the end a computer can be trained to read, interpret, and apply the rules as written in a way that wins games reliably against human opponents. But, then again even if this were to happen, I wouldn’t count this as having won a game of 40k and here is why.

40k, like the RPGs that inspired it, is multimodal. It is long-term. In order to field a unit on Sunday, a player may have to model and paint the miniatures in advance. And sure, a robot can be designed and constructed and educated in a way that allows it to paint miniatures better, more exactly and more quickly than any human being. And sure, a robot that can do this can be designed to also play the game well, and to strategize well, even to create “fluffy” lists that remain “competitive”. But the question arises, “Why?”

One might have to live in a hole in the ground, literally, in order to not understand the ongoing revolution that is the automated AI everything. Robots are taking the jobs, all of them from factory floor to legal office. It will happen very soon, if innovation continues apace and barring an escalation of ongoing world war. But, one thing that these robots are not going to be doing is playing 40k. Sure, AI in video games is only going to get better. Soon, an AI will defeat the world’s best PVP FPS players, of this we can be sure. After all, trying to beat a computer at video games is like trying to outswim a fish. Ain’t gonna happen.

But, robots won’t be trained to gawk at White Dwarfs, wishing for an extra job mowing an extra yard to pick up an extra set of guardsmen militarians. Robots will be trained to beat people over the head and heart with rule books, but they will never beat a flesh and blood human being in the natural environment of 40k as originally hatched, as a combination of drive and fantasy with skills like painting, modeling, crafting, rescuing garbage from sidewalks to make schweet terrain pieces and extra Stompa armor bits and so on. This is not going to happen. Robots will not learn to find the hidden beauty in carelessly discarded gas powered drone muffler shrouds. And this is why robots will never beat a human being at 40k.
 

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Well that was eloquent, passionate, and very well put.

I was hoping for a more technical discussion, but who're we kidding, computers will get there eventually.

Out of curiosity, if computers were to transcend their current format (I believe AlphaGo became so good at go by playing itself millions of times, getting incrementally better with each iteration) and become something more akin to true AI rather than the "trained AI" you mentioned, would you consider them capable of playing the game as you see it?

Granted, a self aware AI with its own likes and dislikes would probably still excel in almost every endeavour, from painting, to playing to hell, even writing it's own fluff. If an AI turned up to a game with a truly terrible yet incredibly fluffy list, would you consider it as playing the game?

Ironically such an AI would probably lose, making your original statement true regardless, but I hope you see my point. If not just ignore me and I'll go back to smearing leadbelcher on everything, because that's what I'm good at :D
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
Well that was eloquent, passionate, and very well put.

I was hoping for a more technical discussion, but who're we kidding, computers will get there eventually.

Out of curiosity, if computers were to transcend their current format (I believe AlphaGo became so good at go by playing itself millions of times, getting incrementally better with each iteration) and become something more akin to true AI rather than the "trained AI" you mentioned, would you consider them capable of playing the game as you see it?

Granted, a self aware AI with its own likes and dislikes would probably still excel in almost every endeavour, from painting, to playing to hell, even writing it's own fluff. If an AI turned up to a game with a truly terrible yet incredibly fluffy list, would you consider it as playing the game?

Ironically such an AI would probably lose, making your original statement true regardless, but I hope you see my point. If not just ignore me and I'll go back to smearing leadbelcher on everything, because that's what I'm good at :D
i understand, at least i think that i do but text is notorious for inviting misunderstandings.
when communicating in person,
body language and context including smells serve to 'fill in the blanks'
and to make misunderstandings much less likely.

about the first question, the only machines that have the complexity with the energetic efficiency necessary are molecular machines, and the only tech we have on such machines is DNA RNA tech, so by the time we get to what you are pointing to we are talking about genetically engineered and so organic life. Simulations are another story. simulated agents may well do what you suggest, become good at all aspects of the game as put forward in my original post, and these sims might be plugged into different systems that actually allowed them to do stuff like play the game or paint the model. so basically an ai lives in your desktop and when you want to paint together you plug it into the two-armed robotic painting outlet, and you share brushed and it paints just like a human being but faster and more precisely i would imagine. then you plus it into a ceiling mounted camera system so that the other two robotic arms on rails and with pulleys can place and move models, roll dice and so on. and when finished, just unplug the little bot and it goes back to practicing painting while it half-sleeps in your pocket.

yep./
the near future...

still, we need to be careful how we use words.
self-aware ai, well, we likley have these in a rudimentary form already.
i have a ten thousand word article for the apa newsletter which we expect to have in print in a couple of months i think... i did it with my friend jun tani. search jun tani a bit, and see what you find. the article is about artificial consciousness. jun builds machines like the google machine. i edited his last book for him. actually, i edit a lot of stuff for him, cuz i am around and cheap, as in free!

what we do not have is robust general ai.
critters that can do different stuff on the fly
in different contexts.
here, again however, we don't have something like a fully autonomous agent,
because robots as generally conceived to execute some purpose
and are repurposed or replaced when this purpose is better accomplished some other way.

did you see the movie, a.i.?
imagine that boy, created to love warhammer.
that, well, we can likely do something like that soon.
i mean, the motivational system, the spontaneous and uniquely individuating emergence of drives and identifying associations, these we will be able to set out soon. actually, i am working on the development of the motivational structure of "organisms" (some people write about any robots capable of consciousness and so on as "organisms" due to their working within the general theory of self-organizing dynamic systems, autopoieticity, Varela, and so on - it is a good view but i don't like using the word in this way but anyways) now. jun and i have three papers scheduled for this journal. the third paper, i will have a model to set out. it is basically the model that i developed for my models of moral cognition paper in 2014. but developed a bit around developmental neurology. yeah, when i get it written up i can send it to you. the third paper is due the end of the year. i have a paper on something close that i did for the short lived international neural networks society journal. it is on my academia page if you want to check it out. and i have another paper on autonomous moral agency which basically extends and refines the view in the previous paper. the journal editor is waiting for a revision. i am a bit late with it... more than a few months actually, and i should be working on that instead of writing stuff about go playing google bots.

all AIs are "trained".
but the training is sort of like training in the Matrix.
the robot runs about in its brains and turns on saying 'i know kung fu'.

deep nets a multiple layers that are often different and arrayed differently for different reasons.
different layers process different aspects of different dimensions differently, too.
for instance, different layers may integrate input information over different time periods,
effectively "attuning" to different patterns within the raw perceptual flow.
this is a basic for example at midnight on saturday here so forgive my casual phraseology...

oh yeah, and for your second question, of course, IF... but then again I have argued for robots as fully autonomous moral agents, and have even sketched how robot religion will emerge due to the basic structure of cognitive agency at the heart of what i think we end up being our first ever robust autonomous ai as you are talking about it, too...
 

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Interesting question. I'd love to see what an AI designed 40k list looks like and what the strengths and flaws of AI play style would be. I could imagine a computer coming up with a bizarre army list
 

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There are several points that I disagree with here, but I'll try to be concise:

Absolutes: "AI will never win"
There is evidence that shows AI beating humans at games. To say they will never with this game is not supported. It has not played this game.

Opportunity
Chess is a massive game that has been around for a massive amount of time. It is generally respected as a game that takes intelligence to win. There is incentive for someone to write an AI that beats the best in the world. 40k is by comparison, a wargame in infancy with less respect than chess. The incentive to throw resources at this game in the same manner as chess is greatly diminished. AI may not win, but it's because there isn't much of a demand to write one that will. (compared to chess)

Iterative and integer Thought
To think that AI is limited to "calculating move in advance" and "spaces" is a false and limiting assumption. Moves are combinations of threat bubbles, risk odds, and vectors instead of spaces. It's less infinite than it seems. Node based AI maps can easily solve these problems and make decisions without iterating through every possibility. As it plays, it learns bad moves. As an example of this on a smaller scale: Small Scale Mario Brothers AI

The Best player
Chess has several methods for determining who the best player is. 40k is not as established or respected. AI Beat the best at chess. AI can therefore beat any human at that game. AI can beat humans, they are not all "Gary Kasparov"s of 40k.

Innovation

Despite humans generally thinking that AI can't imagine or innovate new thoughts, that's only partially true at this stage. Innovation, especially within a framework of rules, can and must be simulated in a learning AI. The random thought that says "try to move here and see if you are rewarded" is the type of thought that starts the learning machine learning. Simulation of innovation is as simple as attempting an action that there is no data on and randomly being successful at it.

Proxy by RTS
While the rules are made for an action based game instead of a turn based game. AI and humans competing within the same parameters will sometimes result in an AI victory. They do also win at turn based games. If AI can sometimes win at a game of similar type, then the evidence supporting a "humans will always win" hypothesis is greatly diminished. The evidence upon which you extrapolate is heavily weighted in favor of the opposition.

Critter AI
We do have that. Monkey and the Banana AI, Swarm AI, Conversational AI, etc. Specifically focused brain functions simulated with an inherent randomness built in to enable spontaneous new ideas. Inasmuch as a mouse is not likely to write an opera, neither is an AI of limited scope going to either. If AI can simulate a functions performed by a mouse or a bee, then it follows that it can be written to simulate any subset of functions of a species. 40k is a subset of human thought that does not rely on the entire function of the brain. Lacking a fully realized brain does not preclude AI from winning. While the AI may be written with the ability to select and play an MP3, it is just as useless to the 40k subset of required skills as the desire a living organism has to reproduce or eat. My point here, is that you don't need a complete brain to play 40k, so lacking a complete critter brain does not imply failure.

Robots
A robot can be built to manipulate the pieces. I doubt there is any question in that. The AI that runs it doesn't need to be in the same device. The robot is a tool for the mind. The robot aspect doesn't really lend anything to the discussion of AI winning.

And....

I probably have more, but these thought in no particular order I felt should be addressed a little bit. Time to work on my basement a little bit!
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
There are several points that I disagree with here, but I'll try to be concise:
i will take them one by one.
Absolutes: "AI will never win"
There is evidence that shows AI beating humans at games. To say they will never with this game is not supported. It has not played this game.
well, no evidence available to your judgment, somehow. though i try to make a heartfelt case here, there is a good deal of practical evidence to support the assertion, some of which is alluded to in the article, including practicality and expense, plus the interesting issue raised in another reply, that by the time we get to the level of complexity in embodied intelligence supporting the multimodal temporal-aspirational aspects of 40k as a thing that people do, and try to do well, we get away from artificial and next to natural. i mean, we end up setting up systems according to general principles of natural systems, and then we spend the rest of the time trying to teach them the right ways and eventually get some use out of them. but really how is this any different than what we do with human beings already? by the time that some 'artificial' entity emerges completely free to determine its course in life, which is typically the very thing denied to robots and AIs, then that entity is a part of nature and the natural world and also thus deserving of moral recognition under law, and moral regard subject to moral sanction and so on...

Opportunity
Chess is a massive game that has been around for a massive amount of time. It is generally respected as a game that takes intelligence to win. There is incentive for someone to write an AI that beats the best in the world. 40k is by comparison, a wargame in infancy with less respect than chess. The incentive to throw resources at this game in the same manner as chess is greatly diminished. AI may not win, but it's because there isn't much of a demand to write one that will. (compared to chess)
there are AIs that play some parts of 40k, virtually, already. chess is easier.
and, you are right that nobody is gonna build a dedicated 40k gamer-bot,
your reasons are good ones, too.

Iterative and integer Thought
To think that AI is limited to "calculating move in advance" and "spaces" is a false and limiting assumption. Moves are combinations of threat bubbles, risk odds, and vectors instead of spaces. It's less infinite than it seems. Node based AI maps can easily solve these problems and make decisions without iterating through every possibility. As it plays, it learns bad moves. As an example of this on a smaller scale: Small Scale Mario Brothers AI
googles thing is a (for now considered to be) 'deep' network that runs through countless simulations in correction of error toward a global optimum condition, "You lose, I win." it is best understood as a dynamic complex system, or a specially arranged stack of them anyways.

The Best player
Chess has several methods for determining who the best player is. 40k is not as established or respected. AI Beat the best at chess. AI can therefore beat any human at that game. AI can beat humans, they are not all "Gary Kasparov"s of 40k.
yeah, i understand.
but i mean it this way.
an "AI" won't be beating me.
or any "me" type/level whatever that is i guess.
there will always be something left out, for example personal mortal investment as felt by a critter on the way to death, this sort of temporality that makes how we spend our sunday afternoons more or less important. if an artificial agent has this sense of its own mortality it will either have better things to do, like save the world for the robots!, or find its favorite pastimes in activities that better match its natural capacities, i dunno like crashing stock markets!

Innovation
Despite humans generally thinking that AI can't imagine or innovate new thoughts, that's only partially true at this stage. Innovation, especially within a framework of rules, can and must be simulated in a learning AI. The random thought that says "try to move here and see if you are rewarded" is the type of thought that starts the learning machine learning. Simulation of innovation is as simple as attempting an action that there is no data on and randomly being successful at it.
for one thing, i believe that random is a stand in for 'we really don't know how it works'.
so, there is limited information in this type of language,
i mean it really only tells us where our knowledge ends.

but in general, rough terms, you are correct in your account.
error correction and feedback loops and so on... predictive coding models, freedom is random compositions of high level primitives, something like that...

Proxy by RTS
While the rules are made for an action based game instead of a turn based game. AI and humans competing within the same parameters will sometimes result in an AI victory. They do also win at turn based games. If AI can sometimes win at a game of similar type, then the evidence supporting a "humans will always win" hypothesis is greatly diminished. The evidence upon which you extrapolate is heavily weighted in favor of the opposition.
right. good. i see.
i maintain that 40k is more than a competitive framework with colored pixels.

given that 40k arises from the human (neck-)beard(y)ed mode of embodiment,
a different mode - an AI in a metal suit - won't be so good at it...

Critter AI
We do have that. Monkey and the Banana AI, Swarm AI, Conversational AI, etc. Specifically focused brain functions simulated with an inherent randomness built in to enable spontaneous new ideas. Inasmuch as a mouse is not likely to write an opera, neither is an AI of limited scope going to either. If AI can simulate a functions performed by a mouse or a bee, then it follows that it can be written to simulate any subset of functions of a species. 40k is a subset of human thought that does not rely on the entire function of the brain. Lacking a fully realized brain does not preclude AI from winning. While the AI may be written with the ability to select and play an MP3, it is just as useless to the 40k subset of required skills as the desire a living organism has to reproduce or eat. My point here, is that you don't need a complete brain to play 40k, so lacking a complete critter brain does not imply failure.
i disagree completely with everything in bold.
the desire to improve at 40k is akin to the becoming that marks the difference between mere existence and being.
not only do you need a complete brain,
cuz this is what 40k is in the beginning designed from, for, around and towards the improvement of,
you need a complete critter with mortal urgencies and all that neurophenomenological stuff that more analytic thinkers like to not analyze cuz it hurts deir wittle hedz.

Robots
A robot can be built to manipulate the pieces. I doubt there is any question in that. The AI that runs it doesn't need to be in the same device. The robot is a tool for the mind. The robot aspect doesn't really lend anything to the discussion of AI winning.

And....

I probably have more, but these thought in no particular order I felt should be addressed a little bit. Time to work on my basement a little bit!
yeah, i mention this in the original post. a handphone Ai that plugs into a robotic assembly at the local game shop so you and throw down against your ANdroid pet!
 

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existence and being.
I don't think self awareness is a requirement of winning. Existing in the base sense, that AI is here and tangible code, is the only requirement of being able to participate in the game. No AI, no game.

i maintain that 40k is more than a competitive framework with colored pixels.
Even still, 40k is contained within the bounds of a finite construct and entities. Rules, table, models, etc. Pixel or not, the framework is nearly identical for the AI to have the structure for the bounds of the game. If such a demand existed, machines could even assemble and paint models to a very high standard. A machine with enough precision to build an array of microchips simultaneously would probably be able to get some sick edge highlights onto its models.

an "AI" won't be beating me.
I think Kasparov said this too. If I were to place a bet, and there were a team at IBM working on a 40k AI system, I know where my money would go.

for one thing, i believe that random is a stand in for 'we really don't know how it works'.
Velcro, Teflon, and Cosmic Background Radiation were all accidentally discovered, and in every case, the application was realized well after the inspirational event. Random is just random. Dog's have gotten burrs on their fur for millions of years, but it wasn't until the 40's that someone thought to apply that to innovation. Like the simple Mario AI example. The AI might jump for hours until it randomly decides to try going right. As small as it is, without instruction, pressing right on the controller is innovation.

the desire to improve at 40k is akin to the becoming that marks the difference between mere existence and being.
AI doesn't need to "be" it only needs to "exist" to participate in this trial. The desire to improve is triggered by the programmed need for what the learning AI has been told is a positive response. A complex AI may really adore Bach, but it's probably not going to help it kill a Wraithknight. That's why only a subset of skills are applicable.

I'm up far too late to add to these thoughts, but I know one thing for sure. When I play 40k against an AI system, I'm not going to trust it to roll the dice.
 

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Neurophenomenological
My my, that's a fancy word. Lets see you use it in a senten.....damnit.

No offense intended ArkInRev, but you seem to be glossing over Jins "moral" side of the argument.

I put moral in quotation marks, because I'm not entirely sure its the right word, and I'm damned if I know what the right word is.

I'm sure none of us are under any illusions that some form of robot / AI can and most likely will beat a human player at 40k. Hell I can probably throw together something that moves, shoots and assaults at random with a little shakey cup so it can roll it's own dice, and it'll eventually win a game in the technical sense of a victory.

Jin's argument seems to be, and apologies to Jin if I've misconstrued this, is that such a machine isn't really playing.

We've all had those games where everything has gone wrong, and a sizeable chunk of your army has been wiped out by an "overpowered" enemy unit for the fraction of the points cost. The kind of games that make you question the game in general. But we keep coming back, because something about the fluff, the models, or maybe just the thrill of that one time your one rending snap shot immobilized a charging death company dreadnought. Something keeps us invested, and keeps us going.

Artifical Intelligence doesn't have that (yet?), and until it does, in any games it does win it's kind of missed the point of playing.

There are probably people making a similar argument for Go at the moment, and it seems to be one of those perspectives that you either agree or disagree with, rather than disprove.

Jin's given me alot of reading to do, so if you'll excuse me I need to go and learn several new languages and maybe do some light studying, like you know, a PHD in Electrical Engineering.

Back in a few......
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I'm sure none of us are under any illusions that some form of robot / AI can and most likely will beat a human player at 40k. Hell I can probably throw together something that moves, shoots and assaults at random with a little shakey cup so it can roll it's own dice, and it'll eventually win a game in the technical sense of a victory.

Jin's argument seems to be, and apologies to Jin if I've misconstrued this, is that such a machine isn't really playing.

We've all had those games where everything has gone wrong, and a sizeable chunk of your army has been wiped out by an "overpowered" enemy unit for the fraction of the points cost. The kind of games that make you question the game in general. But we keep coming back, because something about the fluff, the models, or maybe just the thrill of that one time your one rending snap shot immobilized a charging death company dreadnought. Something keeps us invested, and keeps us going.

Artifical Intelligence doesn't have that (yet?), and until it does, in any games it does win it's kind of missed the point of playing.

There are probably people making a similar argument for Go at the moment, and it seems to be one of those perspectives that you either agree or disagree with, rather than disprove.
:good:
 

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No offense intended ArkInRev, but you seem to be glossing over Jins "moral" side of the argument.
I am absolutely glossing over that because I don't believe that subset of experience is required for AI to beat a human. Or for that matter, a human to participate in the hobby.

Considering enjoyment as being part of the "win" is a subjective and emotional evaluation of a game. It's like Charlie Sheen saying he's "winning." I think there would be many people that would disagree with his subjective valuation that is placed on "winning."

So, dropping AI from the equation for the moment to establish what "winning" is:

One player is a terrible painter, loses every game, makes friends, but then falls undeniably in love with the game and cherishes every moment.

Player 2 is a painting demigod, tactically crushes his opponents like the second coming of Julius Caesar, shows up to games and doesn't interact socially, but does not engage in any emotional aspect of the game. He's a professional or just plays to kill time.

Who beat who?

In my view: Player 2 wins, player 1 gets the "that's the spirit participation ribbon." That's not to diminish or mock player 1, he "gets" the hobby. But player 2 subjectively beats player 1 at painting, and objectively beats them at tactics.

In tournaments, I don't really see a "Who had the most fun? at 40k" category, and even those with sportsmanship categories don't trump the weighting of the technical painting or practical winning categories. As evidenced by any painting or gaming tournament placing no objective value on enjoyment leads me to believe that other players also don't believe that the level of enjoyment is a fundamental component of winning.

So, if AI wins the game, and a machine out paints me he wins. I'm not bothered that I have the consolation prize of "being" despite my inability to overcome that opponent. My esteem isn't bruised by a loss to a machine any more than it is by losing to a human.

I've won games and felt bad about my opponent not having fun. I feel a loss, but I also know that I beat that other person.

When I've lost to AI, either in board games or video games, I know and feel that I have been beaten. I've never dismissed the AI as not really "playing" because it just did as it was programmed. I lost, I had frustrating fun, and I'm OK with my enjoyment of the game. If my opponent feels nothing, that has no impact on my win or loss.

Sure, the AI doesn't have endorphins released to give it pleasure, but I don't think that the chemical "win" in my brain turns my loss into a victory. If an AI is "rewarded" by getting the 1 it's looking for instead of the 0, I don't really see that as a requirement to win. People participate in the hobby for different reasons, and I wouldn't diminish their motivations any more than I would diminish my computer's motivation to get that "1."
 

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I'm certain that if one were to write 40k via code, that the computer would with out a doubt be able to beat a player, and over time with enough testing/patches to beat some of the high end "professional" players of 40k.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
I'm certain that if one were to write 40k via code, that the computer would with out a doubt be able to beat a player, and over time with enough testing/patches to beat some of the high end "professional" players of 40k.
you are on the right track, here.
trying to beat an AI computer game,
or go or chess for that matter which are basically human beings trying to make computer games before they had computers, so that the games are themselves - we can say - originally intended to be coded, in the end,
is like challenging a fish to a swimming race.
but this goes both ways.
that is the essence of the original post, really.
and "competitive" 40k is for wanna be necrons.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 · (Edited)
I am absolutely glossing over that because I don't believe that subset of experience is required for AI to beat a human. Or for that matter, a human to participate in the hobby.
i got that feeling about you, from your posts.
obviously, i think that you are wrong.

by the way, if you could anwser my three questions and explain well why your answers are correct, then i would give you bonus points in another role...


everything is moral.
even what we do with our leisure time.

that doesn't mean that others get to judge and determine who we think about when we polish the sword, so to speak, but it does mean that everything that we do with ourselves and common resources in our lives has consequences that affect other people. there are two ways to go. one, go libertarian ... but libertarians can't handle the complexity of a real social coordination problem, so they typically turn all game/decision theory and say 'no, everything is not moral' but then they spend 40 years increasingly turning left until now the entire position in social political philosophy is a farce. right libertarians are either stuck with a position they would rather not have or are zio-fascists and banksters. after all, who can be more libertarian than milton friedman, who told us that in so far as we are leaders (in business, which is, well, what most people do with most of their lives most of the time) our only duty is to maximize profits for shareholders, which is basically corporate governance through non-governmental mechanisms, though with collusion of government officials and coordination with government mechanisms, i.e. fascism. and this is what we see in the usa today. latter day libertarian corporate capitalism tells us everything is great so long as we don't interfere with anyone else. this is great if people are educated and trained to be wise and tolerant, but the culture is opposite to this in the usa. so, what people end up doing is complaining about what everyone else is doing, e.g. the PC bs ruining critical discourse at universities. and at the same time, corporations and especially financial corporations which have been built over the past four or five generations of fascistic collusion between wealthy people and public officers has resulted in the enrichment and empowerment of both of these two classes of people at the expense of most everyone else. this is one way to go with the question on the limits of morality. the other way to go is to just be honest, or honestly be just, and this starts with the opposite of what people call micro aggressions. instead of focusing on minimizing micro aggressions, wasting resources punishing microaggressors, people should be maximizing micro i don't know what to call it but maybe micro-graciousness ... but people are poor in constructive ideas like these, because they have been lied to their whole lives and continue to believe the lies, especially the big ones, rather than sit down and figure things out for themselves...
i know, some people turn off when people say stuff like this and that is fine, but seriously.
don't believe me?
go to merriam webster dot com, and look up the word 'aggression' as i had just done.
i was looking for an antonym for aggression.
look at the example sentence for the word, aggression, in that dictionary?
of all the possible examples, this very popular and influential website uses this example.
now, what is the problem?
well, it is not what really happened.
actually, it was us aggression which caused the attack on pearl harbor.
people in the us gov had been systematically trying to get japan to attack the usa,
so that those same us gov people could convince all of the poor farmers and kids from california to get into boats and fling themselves at machine gun nests...
then, these same people lied about what happened,
there buddies published the new history books to suit,
and their other buddies and people educated with those same books run merriam webster dot come.

Considering enjoyment as being part of the "win" is a subjective and emotional evaluation of a game. It's like Charlie Sheen saying he's "winning." I think there would be many people that would disagree with his subjective valuation that is placed on "winning."
umm, then why do you care to do it so much, as the rest of your post is really only about that, winning?

So, dropping AI from the equation for the moment to establish what "winning" is:

One player is a terrible painter, loses every game, makes friends, but then falls undeniably in love with the game and cherishes every moment.

Player 2 is a painting demigod, tactically crushes his opponents like the second coming of Julius Caesar, shows up to games and doesn't interact socially, but does not engage in any emotional aspect of the game. He's a professional or just plays to kill time.

Who beat who?
note the origins of your replacement word, 'beat' - it is domination.
question #1) is domination = winning?

In my view: Player 2 wins, player 1 gets the "that's the spirit participation ribbon." That's not to diminish or mock player 1, he "gets" the hobby. But player 2 subjectively beats player 1 at painting, and objectively beats them at tactics.
i think that there are a lot of mistakes here.
player one, maybe he is a vet with one arm and ptsd.
maybe he has a hard time sleeping.
maybe he has no money, because the government won't pay his health care.
maybe it is not him, maybe it is his kid.
maybe his kid wakes up everyday feeling that the weight of the world is on his shoulders.
he can't justify the time and money that he spends on 40k stuff,
but his dad is a vet and he is proud of that,
though he is ashamed of his dad, cuz his dad is broken, and broke.
so the kid likes to hang out, grows up with shaky hands because his house, well,
had no paint and brushes worth anything because his dad had no money and couldn't paint models with one hand,
and is convinced he has bad luck.

player two is some mcmansion dweller.
he lives off his mom's credit card.
he gets to spend his time dreaming up game-breaking netlists and playing with his airbrush
in between sora aoi movies and changing his silk underpants.

player one does more work
what comes under the heading of "cognitive burden" in the literature,
than player two
simply getting to the 40k table than player two will do in a typical month
of lattes and sales meetings.

player one wins.
everything is moral.

In tournaments, I don't really see a "Who had the most fun? at 40k" category, and even those with sportsmanship categories don't trump the weighting of the technical painting or practical winning categories. As evidenced by any painting or gaming tournament placing no objective value on enjoyment leads me to believe that other players also don't believe that the level of enjoyment is a fundamental component of winning.
yeah, and in greece older men said hello to young boys by reaching under their clothes and holding their penises for signs of shame or attraction.
maybe the guys at your tourney do that too?

So, if AI wins the game, and a machine out paints me he wins. I'm not bothered that I have the consolation prize of "being" despite my inability to overcome that opponent. My esteem isn't bruised by a loss to a machine any more than it is by losing to a human.
the game is not about overcoming your opponent.
it is about "overcoming" one's self.

I've won games and felt bad about my opponent not having fun. I feel a loss, but I also know that I beat that other person.
question #2) is domination = winning?

When I've lost to AI, either in board games or video games, I know and feel that I have been beaten. I've never dismissed the AI as not really "playing" because it just did as it was programmed. I lost, I had frustrating fun, and I'm OK with my enjoyment of the game. If my opponent feels nothing, that has no impact on my win or loss.
you are training your embodied neural net to better inhabit a virtual niche with some translation to real world capacities.
congratulations for doing what all living things do.
not a necron yet, maybe.

Sure, the AI doesn't have endorphins released to give it pleasure, but I don't think that the chemical "win" in my brain turns my loss into a victory. If an AI is "rewarded" by getting the 1 it's looking for instead of the 0, I don't really see that as a requirement to win. People participate in the hobby for different reasons, and I wouldn't diminish their motivations any more than I would diminish my computer's motivation to get that "1."
question #3) could you please describe your computer's motivation and how it came to have it?
 

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There are a few points upon which the premise rests that I believe are fallacies.

everything is moral.
even what we do with our leisure time.
"Why is the sky blue?" "Because it doesn't care to be another color." Most of the things that we encounter in life have no morality. While our interactions may have moral implication or consequence, many just don't. I've been breathing since before I knew of microbes, but the moral implications of my microbial genocide has never given me pause. My blood has eradicated countless generations of bacteria and I've never lost a wink of sleep.

Morality is Duality
While the nature of treating morality on a series of scales bundles up the idea into digestible segments, I don't believe that real concepts are two sides of a coin. At worst, I still believe that the edge of the coin is a side. The side that is neither good nor evil, happy nor sad, pleased nor annoyed. It's the side that can't be bothered to be involved in being a side. It's the side often forgotten. Apathy.

Apathy isn't a moral decision, though it has moral implication. My position is such that merely existing is sufficient to interact.

question #1) is domination = winning?

Unless an author is a time traveler from the last moment of the universe's existence, or a mystic with laser accurate precognition, there really isn't a strong enough position to use words like "never." I'm not talking about absurd statements like "Chairs will never enslave the human race", I'm really talking about quantifiable and qualifiable ideas like this one. "Never" is the kind of word that tidies things up for the frightened or insecure. "Zombies will never break through this barrier." That's a fine sentiment, and it probably provides some solace, until zombies break through the barrier and eat your face.

note the origins of your replacement word, 'beat' - it is domination.
question #1) is domination = winning?
I believe domination can equate to winning. I also can see that losing has a moral victory. I don't believe in duality. If I sit down to play against a one armed vet with a heart of gold, I don't pack up my things right off the bat. If I've already lost, why would I play?

the game is not about overcoming your opponent.
it is about "overcoming" one's self.
First off all: This isn't a universally held belief. I can say that, because I don;t agree with it. But, since this has been posited: I don't see why an AI participating in a game would not find and improve self. What if the AI's Fluffy CSM army did beat a tournament Eldar army? That might be just the kind of miracle needed for the AI to find self and maybe even religion in the same second. If a learning AI plays every game out of a compulsion to learn, then at every turn it is striving to overcome the limitations of itself. You may not agree with the motivation or morality of it, but the consequence of its action is just that.

More on not agreeing below:

yeah, and in ancient greece older men said hello to young boys by reaching under their clothes and holding their penises for signs of shame or attraction.
maybe the guys at your tourney do that too?
I just don't see how this applies to tournaments not being won based on a player's life story.

Still, there can be a comparison drawn to why I actually do play games, that has nothing to do with overcoming self. When I engage in play at any level, it's a selfish want of pleasure. When my opponents are having a good time, I'm drawing pleasure from that. Playing games is a way to exchange pleasures without necessarily reaching under the table. It's primitive to reduce the nature of pleasure to one that is solely sexual.

"'It's not whether you win or lose, it's how you play the game."
People have latched on to this phrase, and notice the "how" and not the "why". Why just isn't valued in beating, winning, losing, etc. Sure, the AI has to overcome the semantic hurdle that it may not actually be playing, but I don't think we're really looking at semantics here. If we were, the definition of robot would be called to the stand.

question #3) could you please describe your computer's motivation and how it came to have it?
Of course I can. I'll share that as soon as you describe how you came to "be."

Like it or not, the signal exchanges in your brain and the makeup of your physical form are all the result of a program. Your environment has set some of the variables, but at the core, your biology is just as much of a machine as my laptop is. Challenging the robot's origin of self is absurd when we can't even define our own.

you are training your embodied neural net to better inhabit a virtual niche with some translation to real world capacities.
congratulations for doing what all living things do.
not a necron yet, maybe.
It's not even that. I'm engaging in an activity to give myself pleasure when I oppose an AI or algorithm in a game. It's what play is. I just don't need consolation or validation as a human every time I fail against a machine.

question #2) is domination = winning?
Some would argue that submission is winning, but that's a topic for another type of thread altogether.

In any case, and for clarity, not to be pedantic, the're is an easy opportunity to be misunderstood with the "=" sign, as thus far we have not established what that operation really means. "Equal" The two are the same. "Equivalent" They are close enough for government work. My biggest issue with the "=" usage, is the implied absolute. I've already mentioned how I feel about duality, but as a general rule, when language uses more than one word to describe roughly the same idea, there's likely to be some difference in their definition. "Chest = container" is an unfair equivalency, because in some cases it may be a type of container, and in others we might just be talking about breasts.

From the beginning, and in the end, your definition of "beat" carried the baggage of morality. Neither my definition nor my philosophy are so burdened.
 

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umm, then why do you care to do it so much, as the rest of your post is really only about that, winning?
I didn't have this in the previous post, but the reason that so much is about "winning" is that the topic is "beating" a human. Disparate definition may be an attempt to create a logical niche within which it is impossible for a robot to beat a human, but even if such a niche exists, it doesn't make it true. It makes it true only within the bounds of one logical absolute definition, which is an unfair and limited estimation. Describing winning and providing a human scenario was necessarily long winded to define "beating."

In response, excessive backstory was added upon which a decision was made as to who the winner was. Still, based solely on the scenario presented, there was no answer, nor was there evidence of human interaction offered where humans "beating" other humans was determined by the backstory for their interaction. Finding evidence upon which to extrapolate is going to be difficult, because of the position I am taking: Humans don't value reasons for determining winners in hobby.

Put any three artists in a lineup and declare one of them the "winner" to have beaten the other two and watch the carnage. The one armed vet may have beaten the soulless corporate shill at the hobby by your estimation, but while the vet's story tugs at my heart, I don't agree that he did.

The funny thing here is how binary the treatment of the discussion is when we're trying to discuss how a machine may or may not "beat a real human." That despite our complex state of being, we've reduced our complex thought to the base level of the machine.

It's not 0 or 1, it's not binary, it's not duality, it's not fun or not fun, etc.

Even in the example, there is a binary answer. Inventing a backstory may have engaged the rest of the complex brain, but by the end, the answer was still player 1 or player 2.

So again, why do I care about "winning" so much? Because when it comes to the experience of 40k, I don't see evidence of people placing value on motivation or morality. That's either because it is assumed, which would be quite a presumption, or that it just isn't there. Value is demonstrably placed on quantifiable and qualifiable aspects.

In the end, no one beats anyone at 40k or any other hobby. Everyone collectively wins by engaging with others, or by allowing the idea to exist within which everyone can participate, or by whatever draws a positive response for their position. In fact, we all win by having a robot that is skilled enough to play against us. The stakes of losing collectively at a hobby, is that it will just vanish into history.
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
So again, why do I care about "winning" so much? Because when it comes to the experience of 40k, I don't see evidence of people placing value on motivation or morality. That's either because it is assumed, which would be quite a presumption, or that it just isn't there. Value is demonstrably placed on quantifiable and qualifiable aspects.

In the end, no one beats anyone at 40k or any other hobby. Everyone collectively wins by engaging with others, or by allowing the idea to exist within which everyone can participate, or by whatever draws a positive response for their position. In fact, we all win by having a robot that is skilled enough to play against us. The stakes of losing collectively at a hobby, is that it will just vanish into history.
yeah, i feel that - gw management let the future of 40k get sucked into the cell-phone warp.
bunch of slaaneshi tau-crons.
that is why slaanesh has 'disappeared' lately i'd guess,
cuz g-dub bosses are paranoid, need to hide their excesses,
so moar skulls n free rhinos for everyone in the bar, beetchis!
 
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