Let slip the ants of war!

So the Google AI challenge is back with a vengeance as of yesterday, and for better or worse I've decided to participate this year. I say "or worse" because it could end up being a bit of a personal obsession for the next few weeks, and given the calibre of the competition I'm not sure how well I'll be able to do but it should be a fun learning experience regardless. Naturally this means my current reworking of my vector and matrix math code will be on the back burner while this thing is going on.

I've already signed up and downloaded the C++ starter pack and then uploaded the default bot which is pretty mindless but at least it's something until I've had a chance to submit a bot with a reasonable amount of capability. I'm scared to look at my ranking at the moment since its the default bot, but my handle is "Heron" if anyone is interested in tracking my progress in the rankings. I'll update this blog as soon as I've had a chance to upload a revised bot.

Anyway, this year's competition involves the simulation of an ant colony. The goal for the bot is to collect food, grow the colony, and exterminate opposing ant colonies controlled by other players' bots. I've got an idea for a fairly simple bot that I'm currently researching. I thought I might find a possible algorithm to implement it in Donald Knuth's Art of Computer Programming but unfortunately he hasn't published that chapter yet. I'm devastated.

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