[unrev-II] A Game to Improve Man-Machine Interactions

From: Eric Armstrong (eric.armstrong@eng.sun.com)
Date: Sat Jan 29 2000 - 21:02:37 PST

From: Eric Armstrong <eric.armstrong@eng.sun.com>

Along the lines of developing good man/machine interactions:

For many years, I've thought it would be interesting to create
a complex game managed by a computer that was "open to
all comers". The game could be played by humans, teams of
humans, computers, and any combination thereof.

Possibilities for such a game include:
  * Go (where computers are nowhere near the kind of
      strategic thinking that is required)
  * Real-time battle simulations
  * City management simulations

Initial versions of the game might use Go, where time-mangement
is important, but it's not quite real time. Subsequent versions might
use a game with fixed objectives (like a battle simulation or
city management). Distant versions might use games where you
learn the rules as you go along, and need to set up the computer
for optimal interactivity.

Take Go, for example. A whole range of interations is possible.
The computer might check the move you intend to make for errors.
Or it might suggest strategies. Or it might do detailed analysis in
an area with fuzzy boundaries that you demarcated with a light
pen on a terminal.

At first, individual humans and teams would usually win. Eventually,
I suspect, the human/computer team would come to dominate.
When computers start to win by themselves, we'll know that at
last they are capable of strategic thinking.

It's an idea.

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