Artificial Intelligence Is Being Dumbed Down to Make Beer

By Mike Pomranz |

© Javier Pierini/Getty Images

When you consider all the amazing things artificial intelligence can be used for, making beer probably isn’t one of them. Unless I’m misunderstanding something, I thought the whole point of beer was to let us worry less about intelligence. But while many of the things artificial intelligence can be used for are far more boring than beer – I can only watch people lose to a robot at Jeopardy so many times – so maybe IntelligentX is actually on to something: The company has claimed to produce the world’s first AI brewed beer.

“AI is about making decisions,” said IntelligentX co-founder Dr. Rob McInerney in a promotional video, “and when you’re brewing beer, there’s a lot of decisions that need to be made.” For the products his brand makes, those decisions are run through a complex machine learning algorithm that is able to use customer feedback to “brew new versions which are more finely tuned to people’s tastes,” according to the company. “The AI is about putting all the customers in the same room as the brewer,” said co-founder Hew Leith, according to Wired UK.

Related: ULTIMATE BREWERY TOUR OF THE UNITED STATES ACCORDING TO SCIENCE

The London-based beer brand – which is actually a partnership between a machine learning firm called Intelligent Layer and a creative agency called 10x – currently makes four different beers – a golden, amber, pale and black – each of which allow drinkers to provide online feedback that is then integrated into the next version of the brew. According to Forbes, the beers have already gone through eleven different iterations during their first year of trails – which is pretty bad news if you actually loved one of the beers because at this point, it probably tastes noticeably different.

Beyond simply improving the beer, the AI system also learns how to improve the way it collects feedback from customers, meaning the questions it asks continue to get “better” over time. We’ll know the AI has reached peak intelligence when it finally asks, “Why the hell are you answering questions online when you could be drinking another beer?” Until then, I guess just indulge the robot a little bit.

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