Finally, you can set your artificial intelligence creations free in Minecraft. Microsoft has announced a public release for Project Malmo, the company’s system for testing AI software in Minecraft — and for the first time, anyone can join in.
Microsoft first made the system available to researchers in March under the name AIX, but this release marks the first time the code has been freely available to the public. The code is all available under an open-source license on Github, including a full tutorial on how to deploy your script on the platform, which is embedded below.
The result isn’t that different from typical AI test, in which code is deployed and observed in a test environment. But researchers hope that using Minecraft as that environment will provide new insight into the capabilities and limitations of various AI scripts. Since a typical Minecraft instance is far richer than most AI test environments, Microsoft hopes the integration can speed up the development of various problem-solving and navigation tasks .
"This is going to have an impact in education, at least at the university level," said Malmo’s project lead, Matthew Johnson, in a provided statement. "If I come across some YouTube video showing off some exciting new functionality enabled by our mod, that would make my day."