In today’s Bulldog wrapup of technology news:

  • A human Go champ records first win vs. computer
  • Capital One to let users pay via Amazon’s Echo
  • 15-year-old wins drone Grand Prix
  • GM buys a software startup focused on autonomous cars

The details:

  • Human Go champion scores 1st win over machine after 3 losses

A champion Go player scored his first win over a Go-playing computer program on Sunday after losing three straight times in the ancient Chinese board game, saying he finally found weaknesses in the software.

Lee Sedol’s victory over AlphaGo is a reminder that Google’s Go-playing program has room for improvement despite winning the first three matches in the best-of-five series and the $1 million prize, which will be donated to charity. The program — the first computer system to defeat a top Go player — was developed by Google DeepMind two years ago.

“This one win is so valuable and I will not trade this for anything in the world,” Lee, one of the best Go players in the world, said with a smile after entering the post-match news conference at a Seoul hotel to applause from journalists.

Lee had said earlier in the series, which began last week, that he was unable to beat AlphaGo because he could not find any weaknesses in the software’s strategy.

  • Capital One to let users pay bills via Amazon’s Echo

Capital One has teamed with Amazon to let owners of Amazon’s Echosmart speaker system pay their bills and get other account information through voice commands.

Amazon’s Echo speakers use a voice-command service called Alexa to help users perform various tasks, such as turning on smart lights, playing music or setting a kitchen timer. The number of so-called “skills” Alexa can perform has been growing since the Echobecame widely available last year and now numbers more than 100.

The Capital One service will be the first time a credit-card company has been involved, however. Capital One will let users check their credit card balance, review recent transactions, pay their credit card bill and perform other tasks simply by talking to the device.

Users can sign up for the service via the Amazon Echo setup app. There they can set up a checking account link if they want to pay their credit card balance via the Echo.

Then, to set up a session with Capital One, they give a command such as: “Alexa, ask Capital One for my Quicksilver Card balance” or “Alexa, ask Capital One to pay my credit card bill.”

  • 15-year-old pilot from England wins Dubai’s World Drone Prix

A team led by a 15-year-old pilot from England took first place Saturday in the World Drone Prix, a new contest hoping to take flight both in this Mideast country fascinated by the technology and with sports fans worldwide.

Luke Bannister of Somerset led Tornado X-Blades Banni UK to win a $250,000 purse, part of $1 million in prizes handed out in the inaugural edition of this race as a Cabinet-level minister announced the start of the World Future Sports Games in December 2017.

Those contests next year will include robotic swimming, running, wrestling and car racing, as well as drone flying, as this city of futuristic skylines yearns to be ahead of the curve.

“We are trying to bring the future closer to us,” said Mohammed al-Gergawi, the United Arab Emirates’ minister for Cabinet affairs.

At the World Drone Prix, four pilots at a time sat in racing-style seats, their eyes covered by goggles allowing them to watch a feed from a camera on their drone. The dronesraced on a course behind them, zipping along a white track that occasionally reached up to pinch at the speeding aircraft for 12 laps with the skyscrapers of the Dubai Marina behind them.

The pilots wore the white racing jumpsuits familiar to Formula One, but racers have to worry about what’s above and below them as they fly their drones, said Zachry Thayer, a 25-year-old pilot for Team Big Whoop of Fort Collins, Colorado. But the onboard camera puts a racer into the action like nothing else, he said.

“That’s what’s making it explode,” Thayer said. “Anybody can go out and all of a sudden, they’re Superman,”

The crafts flown more resembled Erector Set creations, with one team using a cheap disposable lighter to solder a wire. The races themselves looked at home in the science-fiction film “Tron” — glowing fluorescent lights guiding the way around the 591-meter (650-yard) track.

  • GM buys software company to speed autonomous car development

With hopes of speeding development of self-driving cars, General Motors has acquired a small software company that’s been testing vehicles on the streets of San Francisco.

The Detroit automaker says it purchased Cruise Automation, a 40-person firm that was founded just three years ago.

The move, coupled with GM’s in-house research, should help the company in its race with Google and others to have autonomous cars start transporting people on public roadways.

GM wouldn’t give a timetable for rolling out the technology, but President Dan Ammann said it would happen as soon as the company can demonstrate that the cars are ready.

“It’s our view that driverless technology will be demonstrably safer than the human driver,” Ammann said in a telephone interview.

Cruise Automation, along with Google, is among the few companies with permits from the state of California to test the cars, said Kyle Vogt, the company founder and CEO. The company is working to tackle the biggest obstacles to autonomous cars — seeing the lane lines in bad weather and integrating data from cameras and other sensors so thecars make the right decisions on the road, Vogt said. “I agree that’s a challenge,” he said. “Looking at lane markers isn’t going to get you there.”