Kasparov dwells on augmented intelligence; Farah aims to run the world

Kirti Patil
Sunday, 21 October 2018

A talent like Gary Kasparov is born once in a century and it takes an absolute champion to say “pinnacle of success is not winning, but surviving a long title match against the reigning champion.

New Delhi: A talent like Gary Kasparov is born once in a century and it takes an absolute champion to say “pinnacle of success is not winning, but surviving a long title match against the reigning champion.

“Its about you making fewer mistakes than your opponent,” is how chess legend and multiple World champion Kasparov described his greatest moment in life during an interaction put together by Royal Stag here on Saturday.

If Kasparov was intelligence personified, who refused to accept artificial intelligence taking over the reins from humans, saying there was nothing like artificial but “augmented intelligence”, but at the end it will be humans who will make the future world.

Usefulness of machines
He admitted machines are useful for that purpose, but contrary to the idea of a conflict between human ingenuity and robotic accuracy, Kasparov believes in the marriage of the two.

Kasparov did play against a ‘machine’ - an IBM computer - in 1997, a contest he lost. He admitted the gulf between human and computer calculative skills are much bigger now than 20 years ago.

He said, “It’s not human versus machine, but human plus machine. Today’s new era must have a human-machine collaboration, and not a human-machine competition.

Then there was Multiple Olympic champion Mo Farah, who talked about “being in the zone” and chose to stay in the present than announce or predict participation in any big racing competition in the future. “Part of me does miss the track,” he said, but insisted he would concentrate of roads for now.

Part of moving in the direction of perfection is to keep learning; Charlesworth, the former India hockey coach, stressed on the importance of this when reflecting on Indian hockey. From being “the innovators of the game (sic)” in the early 20th century, the country suffered as it “stopped learning,” Charlesworth said.

However, the introduction of the Hockey India League was a decisive turning point, Charlesworth noted, as Indians were able to rub shoulders with hockey stars from abroad. “Both the men’s and women’s teams are competitive now; I’m optimistic of a resurgence of Indian hockey,” he said.

ABD backs India
ABD backs India to do well in Australia, when the team goes down under in November.

South African great AB de Villiers believes India “have a very good chance” of beating Australia in the upcoming away series notwithstanding their recent losses overseas. 

India played better in South Africa than what they managed in England but ended up losing both the high-profile series.

The batting let India down on both tours but de Villiers, who shocked the cricketing world in May with sudden retirement from international cricket, has backed Indian batsmen to do well Down Under in the four-Test series beginning in December.

“They have a very good chance, to be honest with you. They came to South Africa, probably played better cricket (but lost 1-2). Lost in England now but once again first Test was on a knife’s edge and could have gone either way, which would have changed the whole complexion of the series,” said de Villiers.

“Going to Australia now, I think if they can keep the fast bowlers fit they have a very good chance. I saw some of the guys were not hundred percent fit (Bumrah and Bhuvi but have recovered now). If they can get all the fast bowlers ready, if not the best, they are one of the best bowling attacks in the world at the moment. And we know what the batting unit is capable of,” said the 34-year-old.

“They have got to take the opportunity, especially going to Australia. If you slip first Test match there, it becomes a snowball. Actually anywhere in the world, the minute you are playing away from home, the way you start is very important. They slipped in South Africa and England and it snowballed (into a series loss),” he said.

Travelling teams including India are increasingly finding it tough to win overseas. To reverse the worrying trend, de Villiers would not want to tinker much with the playing conditions but he is open to the idea of doing away with the toss.

“(If visiting team gets to choose and there is no toss) it will force the home side to make an even wicket. And obviously the visiting team will decide on what it wants to do based on the conditions. Having said that, there is no better feeling than to tour and win (despite all challenges). It is the greatest feeling (to win in places like India and Australia). I would not want to change that,” he said.

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