We thought computers needed to become more human to win at poker
I was one of those who said it could never be done: that a computer wouldn’t ever manage to beat the best at the game of poker. I was romantic and wide-eyed at 18, when my heroes were the cowboys from Texas who ruled the felt. They were uneducated and coarse, yet chock full of the human qualities needed to excel at poker.
With nicknames like Amarillo Slim and Texas Dolly, these larger-than-life characters had fearlessness, aptitude, and a deep understanding of what makes people tick. The higher the stakes, the better they played. One moment an opponent would be confidently betting their hand, then squirming with fear and unable to call.