"Improving AI software by getting it to play video games has been done before. But Microsoft suggests the open-ended nature of Minecraft makes it particularly useful because of the huge variety of situations it can simulate from first-person perspectives.
"It allows you to have 'embodied AI'," explained Matthew Johnson, the principal software engineer working on AIX.
"So, rather than have a situation where the AI sees an avatar of itself, it can actually be inside, looking out through the eyes of something that is living in the world.
"We think this is an essential part of building this kind of general intelligence.""
Love this quote: "The company says Minecraft is more "sophisticated" than existing AI research simulations and cheaper to use than building a robot."