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Poker AI- Are the Bots getting Stronger?

As technology continues to develop, as does the world of artificial intelligence. This is true also in the field of Poker AI. The technology behind these systems are continually improving, and some of the biggest universities are putting in a lot of time to fully understand the game and make the best bot they possibly can. Pokersites.me.uk has a great insight into the world of Poker AI, including a timeline of its development over the years since the very first basic software was developed in 1984.
For many years since its development poker bots were good, yet not quite good enough to beat the humans that were masters of the game. It was hard to develop a bot that can play a game that requires imperfect skills to master. Yet over the years these bots have been steadily improving to the point that some opportunistic programmers had a go at developing something to fill the hole in a potentially lucrative market.

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In later years since the first bot was developed, some companies began to develop bots which they then put up for sale. These bots had the power to compete in games such as Hold’em and PLO, essentially cheating the system. Those that buy the programme hoped to be able to use it to beat online betting sites and make a little bit of money in the process.
In 2011 online betting sites, had had enough, and large companies such as PokerStars and Full Tilt decided that they were going to work on removing the bots from the sites completely. It is a tricky process to identify if a human is playing the game or it is a bot, but once a bot has been identified, they are immediately banned from the site and any funds that they have are confiscated.
Not only has poker AI been developing in the recent years, but also has human recognition software. It is now much easier for online betting sites to identify when it is a human using the site and when it is not, making it much harder for bots to be used. In recent years bots have not been a major issue on poker sites, and the sites intend to keep it this way.
Poker AI is very different to the AI that’s is required for a computer to beat a human at games such as chess, checkers and backgammon, most problems in the real world are not laid out neatly on a board with a simple way to solve it. Poker AI has to calculate risk and reward in real time, essentially the ‘bluff’. It is with this sort of development that there is hope that some good can come out of it. In the future, similar systems are hoped to be able to tackle tricky problems in real life situations such as military strategy, cyber security, and medicine. The bot is getting stronger and cleverer every year, so these uses are currently looking pretty likely in the near future.

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