Can AI play Sonic the Hedgehog?
For humans, playing the Sonic the Hedgehog games isn’t too hard. It’s just running, jumping, spinning, collecting rings and bouncing on enemies’ heads.
It’s a tougher challenge for non-humans, though. A company called OpenAI has launched a competition for people to design an artificial intelligence (AI) program that can play Sonic the Hedgehog. Artificial intelligence is a computer system that is able to learn and perform tasks that usually require human intelligence. The AIs will have to learn the hard way: by playing levels from the Sonic games over and over, making mistakes until they can complete each course without dying.
This isn’t the first example of AIs learning to play games. In 2015, Google developed an AI that could play Space Invaders just as well as many humans, and in 2017, a team of US researchers did the same thing for Super Mario Bros.