OpenAI – a non-profit organization supported by Elon Musk, Microsoft, Amazon, and many others tech giants – has released a new software platform for testing and improving AI agents.

Universe – A Training Ground For AI

Universe allows users to train and test an AI bot on any task that humans perform on computers. This includes games, websites, and other applications. What’s more, the bots can actually imitate the way humans do it – they recognize screen pixels and utilize a virtual mouse and keyboard.

Open AI’s previous release, Gym, allows developers to test and analyze their reinforced learning (RL) algorithms. Thanks to Universe, basically any application can become a Gym environment. What’s really exciting here is the fact that the platform comes equipped with many ready environments, including games such as Portal, World of Goo, Shovel Knight, Wing Commander III, Command & Conquer: Red Alert 2, Syndicate, Magic Carpet, Mirror’s Edge, Sid Meier’s Alpha Centauri. There are also flash games, browser tasks, and a bunch of Atari 2600 releases.

Improving AI

Although the AI technology has achieved some remarkable feats, like defeating humans in chess or Go, it faces serious limitations. They can outperform us in specific tasks, but these skills are useless in other disciplines. OpenAI hopes to change this by developing AI agents capable of remembering their past experiences in Universe environments and using them in other, more complex scenarios. This could lead to achieving something similar to our common sense, which so far has been extremely elusive.

OpenAI, as the name suggests, is an open-source project welcoming everyone eager to help. You don’t even need to know much about programming in order to contribute. Human demonstrators will be needed soon to show the AI agents how to use Universe environments. You can sign up and play games in the name of science here.


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