Marvin Minsky Medal for Outstanding Achievements in AI

DeepMind AlphaGo Team Receive Inaugural IJCAI Marvin Minsky Medal for Outstanding Achievements in AI
 
The team behind DeepMind’s world-beating AlphaGo system were today announced as the recipients of the inaugural Marvin Minsky Medal, given by the IJCAI organisation for Outstanding Achievements in Artificial Intelligence (AI)

AlphaGo made world headlines in March 2016, when it became the first system to beat a world champion Go player, defeating Lee Sedol 4-1 in a series of Go matches played in Seoul, Korea. Sedol is widely accepted as one of the greatest Go players of our age, and AI experts had not expected this level of performance from a Go-playing program for a decade at least.
 
“AlphaGo is a wonderful achievement, and a perfect example of what the Minksy Medal was initiated to recognise”, said Professor Michael Wooldridge, Chair of the IJCAI Awards Committee.  “What particularly impressed IJCAI was that AlphaGo achieves what it does through a brilliant combination of classic AI techniques as well as the state-of-the-art machine learning techniques that DeepMind is so closely associated with. It’s a breathtaking demonstration of contemporary AI, and we are delighted to be able to recognise it with this award.”
 
“We are truly honoured to be awarded the inaugural Marvin Minsky medal for AlphaGo,” said Demis Hassabis, CEO of DeepMind. “We hope the ideas in AlphaGo are just the beginning and we are excited to now apply those techniques to the next set of grand challenges, such as advancing science and medicine.”
 
The Minsky Medal is named for Marvin Minsky (1927-2016), one of the founders of the field of AI; the award was initiated with the full support of the Minsky family.
 
DeepMind will be presented with the award at the IJCAI-2018 conference, to be held in Stockholm, Sweden, in July 2018.
 
NOTE TO EDITORS:

IJCAI (https://www.ijcai.org) is the non-profit scientific organisation responsible for organising the International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence - the oldest established international conference on AI, running regularly since 1969. As well as organising the conference annually, the IJCAI organisation presents a series of highly prestigious AI awards, and funds a programme of international activities to support the promotion and dissemination of AI research.
 
MARVIN MINSKY (1927-2016) was one of the founders of the field of artificial intelligence. Minsky made fundamental contributions to a range of topics in artificial intelligence and computer science. He was a co-founder of MIT's Computer Science and AI Laboratory, and served on the faculty of MIT for more than half a century, in that time supervising many PhD students who also went on to be leaders in AI and computer science. He was the recipient of many prizes and awards in his lifetime, including the Japan Prize, the IJCAI Research Excellence Award, and, in 1969, the ACM Turing Award - the greatest honour that can be bestowed upon a computer scientist.
 
DEEPMIND (http://deepmind.com) is a world leader in artificial intelligence research and its application for positive impact. It is on a mission to push the boundaries of AI, developing programs that can learn to solve any complex problem without needing to be taught how. It was founded in London in 2010 by Demis Hassabis, Mustafa Suleyman and Shane Legg.  Having been acquired by Google in 2014, it is now part of the Alphabet group. It continues to be based in London, alongside some of the country's leading academic, cultural and scientific organisations in the King's Cross Knowledge Quarter.