from the must-be-on-mushrooms-when-you-write-the-code dept.
togelius writes "We're running a competition to see who can program the best AI for a version of Super Mario Bros. It's about deciding what to do at each time step — run, jump, shoot etc. — based on a description of the platforms, items and enemies around Mario. This is hard. It's so hard we believe that some sort of machine learning algorithm will be necessary to reach good playing performance. But really, any approach is fair game. We welcome hard-coded submissions, commercial AI programmers, academics and amateurs alike. Whoever wins, it will be really interesting. The competition is associated with two IEEE conferences, and there are cash prizes available for the best submissions."
angry tapir sends along coverage from Good Gear Guide of a recent Microsoft !0-K SEC filing: "Microsoft for the first time has named Linux distributors Red Hat and Canonical as competitors to its Windows client business in its annual filing to the US Securities and Exchange Commission. The move is an acknowledgment of the first viable competition from Linux to Microsoft's Windows client business, due mainly to the use of Linux on netbooks, which are rising in prominence as alternatives to full-sized notebooks. ... 'Client faces strong competition from well-established companies with differing approaches to the PC market,' Microsoft said in the filing. 'Competing commercial software products, including variants of Unix, are supplied by competitors such as Apple, Canonical, and Red Hat.'"