Bloomberg Businessweek

The Bot That Bluffed Me

AI breakthroughs may make it tougher for humans to compete in online poker matchups | “There was the idea that this game would be safer for much longer from these machines”
Human pros losing a war of attrition against AI player Libratus at the Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh

Joshua Brustein

Four of the world’s best poker pros spent most of January at the Rivers Casino in Pittsburgh, losing. They’d show up before 11 a.m. in stylish sneakers and sweatpants to sit in front of computer screens. Each of the four was supposed to play 1,500 hands of heads-up, no-limit Texas hold ’em online before going back to the hotel for the night. This often meant working past 10 p.m. Over the course of the day, Starbucks cups and water bottles piled up next to the players’ keyboards. Chipotle bags lay at their feet.

Their opponent was a piece of software called Libratus, running at the Pittsburgh Supercomputing Center in Monroeville, a nearby suburb.

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