In 1996, when supercomputer Deep Blue beat the world’s greatest chess player, Gary Kasparov, we opened the door for machines to not only take the place human beings, but to surpass us with cold logic and massive processing power. In 2012, humanity is on the road to losing another game to the superior programming of a machine. That’s right, there’s a machine that’s better than you at ping-pong. Robotics experts at the Technical University of Darmstadt in Germany have created a robot arm that learns to adapt its game as it plays. Like the Highlander, this arm will inevitably absorb the skills of the world’s greatest ping-pong players, becoming an unstoppable force to be worshipped by anyone holding a paddle.
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