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Carnegie Mellon Students Build Doom Bot Based on Google Deep Q-Network

Two Carnegie Mellon students created a Doom AI agent that is capable of beating human players, as well as built-in AI agents, in the classic Doom computer game. Devendra Chaplot and Guillaume Lample used Google's DeepMind deep-learning technology to develop their Doom-playing bot, which they have nicknamed "Arnold."

According to the story at the CMU website, Doom is harder to play than other games that are the focus of AI research because the player can only see part of the playing field. The game exists in a 3D world but plays out on a 2D screen. The built-in AI agents included with Doom cheat by consulting maps and other background data to compete. Chaplot and Lample's bot, on the other hand, uses visual information that would be available to a human.

Although other Doom bots exist in the world (Arnold actually took second place in a recent world-wide competition), the Carnegie Mellon project is attracting attention as an application of a Deep Q-Network (DQN), part of the DeepMind platform, which is billed as Google's answer to IBM Watson and other similar tools.

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Off the Beat * Bruce Byfield

Crowdfunding vs. Patronage

Originally, free software was the work of volunteers. At first, they sought the support of sympathetic companies, and were often given a free hand so long as they showed results. However, more recently, free software developers have sought the support of crowdfunding – a development that leaves me with mixed feelings.

Replacing Google Maps with Marble

Several years ago, Google Maps was ranked as the most popular app on smart devices, installed on over half of all devices. The convenience is obvious, but few stop to investigate privacy concerns. For that reason, I have been using Marble, KDE's geographical application, instead.

Paw Prints * Jon "maddog" Hall

Free and Open Source: Economics, not Politics

"Open Source" has been prominent in Brazil for more than 10 years. During that time, Free and Open Source Software and Hardware (FOSSH) has become associated with the PT political party. This paper outlines why FOSSH should be a major policy of every Brazilian political party. While it is answering a particular current problem in Brazil, it can be used in almost any country.

ADMIN HPC

http://hpc.admin-magazine.com/

Modern Fortran -- Part 1: Fortran 90Jeff Layton

Fortran comprises a huge body of software in high-performance computing. We look at Fortran's evolution into a modern HPC language.

ADMIN Online

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SDN and the Future of Networking * Udo Seidel

Networking is a central focus of IT. With all the virtual machines running on today's networks, it stands to reason that the experts would someday find a way to virtualize the network itself. Software-Defined Networking (SDN) is an architecture that promises to cope with new demands.

A REST Interface for FreeIPA * Thorsten Scherf

Access to the FreeIPA identity management framework is usually handled via a graphical web interface or a command-line tool, but the framework can also be queried directly via the JSON-RPC API.

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