ICGA WCCC prospects ...

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Marc Lacrosse
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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by Marc Lacrosse » Mon Jan 05, 2009 6:20 pm

George Tsavdaris wrote: It doesn't make sense to me that GMs must be allowed to play their best Chess while as per your proposal, computers should not be allowed to do that.

Evolution goes ahead and not behind. Why we should apply any measures to make it go behind?
I want to see the best quality of Chess possible. Period.
And having 1700 cores if possible, a 40 GB opening book and 7 piece EGTBs keeps up with that purpose.
If others can't follow it it's their problem and we shall not keep evolution behind because some can't follow it.
I am almost sure that we will agree that the sense of opening books is, to support the engines with just that - the opening -
No i don't agree at all.
You stick at semantics. Forget about semantics! Forget about the word "Opening" in the meaning of "Opening Books".
The sense of opening books is to make the engine play better. Period again.

Opening books save a huge time. Contain very deep analyzed good moves to be played instantly, contain very deep analyzed moves to be avoided instantly, contain moves that engine is known to do well with.
They improve engine's strength. It's a part of what we say a Computer Chess player.
George i completely agree with you !
Yes I want to see the best quality of Chess possible

And yes "books" are part of what we say a computer chess player.

I deerly hope this opinion will prevail.

In case the opposite should win I for sure would leave this CC world immediately.

Marc

bob
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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by bob » Mon Jan 05, 2009 6:41 pm

Mike S. wrote:
bob wrote: I know grandmasters that can recall entire games with side variations. Do we not allow them to do that? And how do we do so?
We don't need to stop GMs from doing anything, but it can make sense to apply different rules to computer tournaments than to human tournaments. - About the topic of opening books:

What exactly is an opening? And more specifically, how long is it, in terms of moves, where does it end?

I am almost sure that we will agree that the sense of opening books is, to support the engines with just that - the opening - because it is required for various reasons. Ok. But we need to distinguish between what's really the opening, and what's the (early) middlegame already, etc. The opening theory may go far beyond the opening in many variations, but that aren't opening moves anymore.

The opening is not 30 moves and not even 20 moves. Please take a look at this (a symbolic illustration):

[D]rnbqkbnr/pppppppp/8/8/2BPPB2/2N2N2/PPPQ1PPP/3RR1K1 b kq - 0 10

The opening is finished! - White requires 10 moves to reach this position. Of course, with "interference" by Black maybe he'd need one or two extra moves for a similar developement. That is why I think that if it is really about the opening (and about nothing else), a limitation of 12 or max. 15 full moves should be sufficient and should be introduced in important computer chess tournaments.

As an even more radical proposal, I would standardize books, in other words same book for all, but I am aware that this will probably never get a majority of votes. - But a book depth limitation should be considered.

If that is absolutely NOT what the participants want, than they should eventually think about awarding the title to the winner's book author, not to the engine programmer... :mrgreen:
I personally think _none_ of this makes any sense. The idea of limiting the books is silly. Do we also limit what positional structures a program can evaluate? What about the search space? Do we limit the kinds of extensions so that one program can't see that much deeper than another? There are already ridiculous discussions about limiting the hardware.

Why don't we just cut to the chase and limit everyone to using just one CPU, one specific chess program, one specific chess book, one specific set of endgame tables. That will solve all these issues once and for all, and finally completely end computer chess research.

Nobody tells me, as a human, whether to spend more time studying openings, or middlegame concepts, or if I should break out Fine's "Basic Chess Endings" and study that until I quit playing chess completely. I am free to be an opening expert, an expert tactician, an expert positional player, an expert endgame player, or some mixture of those. What is the point in discussing such ridiculous limitations. Why don't you find a group of _programmers_ that want to see such restrictions. I don't care what _users_ want or what _spectators_ want, in this regard.

bob
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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by bob » Mon Jan 05, 2009 6:43 pm

Marc Lacrosse wrote:
George Tsavdaris wrote: It doesn't make sense to me that GMs must be allowed to play their best Chess while as per your proposal, computers should not be allowed to do that.

Evolution goes ahead and not behind. Why we should apply any measures to make it go behind?
I want to see the best quality of Chess possible. Period.
And having 1700 cores if possible, a 40 GB opening book and 7 piece EGTBs keeps up with that purpose.
If others can't follow it it's their problem and we shall not keep evolution behind because some can't follow it.
I am almost sure that we will agree that the sense of opening books is, to support the engines with just that - the opening -
No i don't agree at all.
You stick at semantics. Forget about semantics! Forget about the word "Opening" in the meaning of "Opening Books".
The sense of opening books is to make the engine play better. Period again.

Opening books save a huge time. Contain very deep analyzed good moves to be played instantly, contain very deep analyzed moves to be avoided instantly, contain moves that engine is known to do well with.
They improve engine's strength. It's a part of what we say a Computer Chess player.
George i completely agree with you !
Yes I want to see the best quality of Chess possible

And yes "books" are part of what we say a computer chess player.

I deerly hope this opinion will prevail.

In case the opposite should win I for sure would leave this CC world immediately.

Marc
I won't ever leave it until I return to room temperature, but I will certainly choose to not play in any tournaments where such restrictions are used. We can _always_ do our own CC tournaments where "anything goes". And those that want the limits can watch as their events die away while the "anything goes" events continue to flourish.

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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by Uri Blass » Mon Jan 05, 2009 7:34 pm

diep wrote:
Nick C wrote:He quoted it as the reason here:

http://www.hiarcs.net/forums/viewtopic. ... c&start=15


“The pro is that more programmers might be attracted. Paderborn was cancelled
 this year. One of the reasons was that there were only 5 or 6 programs that
 wanted to play. The organizers asked for reasons and many told that there is 
no point getting killed by Rybka running on 40 cores.

“The disadvantage of this is that it will hinder innovation on multi core
 machines and on clusters.”

Yes he was quoting someone else, but without this quote, he has no reason to even think about limiting hardware. Interesting that none of these programmers have come forwards.
This is just total untrue. The reason why it there were so little particiants was:

a) they keep it at a date where more than a year ago already ex-participants said from: "we prefer to be with our family instead of play at that date between Christmas and the new year". Some still showed up in 2007, but said: "in 2008 i will not show up if it gets organized at the same date".

b) None of the participants said something about hardware. Note that rybka never has had the fastest hardware in paderborn.

c) most computerchess organizers announce events WAY WAY too late. For a blitz event (international hypercube blitz tournament - 150-200 participants) i'm busy with now i'm already organizing way into 2010 now.

You should drop the word 'rybka'. This is not about rybka.

And forget 40 cores, it's 64 cores the machines that intel soon releases, and i bet that the Hiarcs team soon has a box like that also to connect to.

The processor, still under NDA, most likely is the beckton. It's 8 cores that split into 16 logical cores and just works MP, which means it only works in 4 socket mainboards. I'm not sure what clock it runs at, that's still under NDA.

Intel will demonstrate it all at an upcoming event together with other hardware.

The question i like to ask to everyone here, do you want the chessprogrammers to pay more money, because of some decision taken by Levy alone?

to Mike: there is way more factors you forget to consider. If you limit the number of cores, so if you do not standardize the hardware, then that just costs MORE money, because high clocked cpu's are the MOST EXPENSIVE cpu's.

Highest clocked production cpu is power6 at 4.9Ghz.

It eats about 6000 watt for 1 big node and for a $100k or so you can get a box with a few cores of it.

Note that hardware is not most important thing in computerchess nowadays. The impact of a good book is for example way more than whether you run on 8 cores or 800 cores. Hardware matters only when the differences between 2 programs are tiny. Especially it matters a lot when you let an engine play against itself (the so called "incest test" to quote Johan de Koning - not my words).

Yet of course everyone tries to do his best in every aspect of the game that influences the game. So you try to show up with good hardware.

For the nerds among you: reason why high clocked stuff is so expensive is because there is a relation O ( m ^ 3 ). So to get 1 Ghz higher is really very expensive as you have to put it to the power 3 with respect to power through the cpu and all kind of problems that start to exist (leakage etc). I'm not an expert enough there to explain that to you in a clear manner.

This is why we do not have 10Ghz production cpu's.

The thing that is very bad in limiting the total number of cores is
a) the timing, a few months before the world champs we suddenly get the email that the board being Levy, decided to limit things to 8 cores. Just when people have put MONEY and EFFORT in parallellizing their software for machines with more cores and/or other type of hardware.

but most important is
b) marketing. we get MORE attention as a worldchampionship when there is big hardware. TV, radio is suddenly interested if it is open hardware and shows up. In 2000 in London, the last "single processor microworldchampionship", there was NO ONE from the press for the computerchess.

Who is gonna look for a few nerds who play at retarded overclocked machines?

c) the equipment used to overclock is something you do NOT have at home. So believing that the hardware that actually shows up there is something you can buy in a shop is nonsense. Only some very big fanatics, who work for the government, they manage to achieve what is gonna show up there. So a limitation just means that the amateur engines like Sjeng and Jonny get hurt, it doesn't limit Hiarcs/Rybka.

d) the icga board is technoidiots. they never managed to correctly check hardware. I remember 2000 all too well. Back then it was still relative easy for a person to check. Now it is 2009, it is not so easy now. I would be very surprised if the board suddenly could.

e) As of today we do not even have a definition of what a 'core' is. And whether the box must be inside the tournament hall or is allowed to be remote. Is a 4 socket beckton machine allowed if you say you just use 8 cores out of it?

Is 8 fpga's allowed?

The tournament already happens in a few months time.

You guys realize that only teams with big sponsors can arrange a machine according to specs at last moment?

f) The ones who get impacted most by the new rules are the amateurs.
Now they must buy a 8 core box, next year a 16 core box?
Comeon, only the teams with sponsors can switch so easily.

What amateurs dislike most from events is when just operators show up, as operators ONLY show up if they can kick butt with an engine. There is very FEW operators who show EVER up when they cannot win. Now with Diep of course i manage to kick operators. but most amateurs cannot. What they are sick of, that is operators who get for free $1500 from icga for showing up there.

In 2008 world champs i understood there was at least 3 operators not from China to operate strong engines (Rybka, Hiarcs, Toga). I'm very sure without that $1500 for free odds would've been big that at least 2 out of 3 would not have shown up.

Vincent
About c:
I do not understand why do you consider sjeng to be amateur when it is a commercial program.

Sjeng is not weaker than hiarcs based on the ccrl rating list so there is no reason to include hiarcs as commercial and sjeng as amateur.


about f:I am against the new rule but I do not see how the amateurs suffer from it.
The rule does not say equal hardware for all but only give some limit for the hardware.

I wonder what is the difference in speed between the best 8 core machine that money can buy and the best machine that you can get for less than 1000$ and has at most 8 cores.

Uri

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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by Dr.Wael Deeb » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:08 pm

Uri Blass wrote:
diep wrote:
Nick C wrote:He quoted it as the reason here:

http://www.hiarcs.net/forums/viewtopic. ... c&start=15


“The pro is that more programmers might be attracted. Paderborn was cancelled
 this year. One of the reasons was that there were only 5 or 6 programs that
 wanted to play. The organizers asked for reasons and many told that there is 
no point getting killed by Rybka running on 40 cores.

“The disadvantage of this is that it will hinder innovation on multi core
 machines and on clusters.”

Yes he was quoting someone else, but without this quote, he has no reason to even think about limiting hardware. Interesting that none of these programmers have come forwards.
This is just total untrue. The reason why it there were so little particiants was:

a) they keep it at a date where more than a year ago already ex-participants said from: "we prefer to be with our family instead of play at that date between Christmas and the new year". Some still showed up in 2007, but said: "in 2008 i will not show up if it gets organized at the same date".

b) None of the participants said something about hardware. Note that rybka never has had the fastest hardware in paderborn.

c) most computerchess organizers announce events WAY WAY too late. For a blitz event (international hypercube blitz tournament - 150-200 participants) i'm busy with now i'm already organizing way into 2010 now.

You should drop the word 'rybka'. This is not about rybka.

And forget 40 cores, it's 64 cores the machines that intel soon releases, and i bet that the Hiarcs team soon has a box like that also to connect to.

The processor, still under NDA, most likely is the beckton. It's 8 cores that split into 16 logical cores and just works MP, which means it only works in 4 socket mainboards. I'm not sure what clock it runs at, that's still under NDA.

Intel will demonstrate it all at an upcoming event together with other hardware.

The question i like to ask to everyone here, do you want the chessprogrammers to pay more money, because of some decision taken by Levy alone?

to Mike: there is way more factors you forget to consider. If you limit the number of cores, so if you do not standardize the hardware, then that just costs MORE money, because high clocked cpu's are the MOST EXPENSIVE cpu's.

Highest clocked production cpu is power6 at 4.9Ghz.

It eats about 6000 watt for 1 big node and for a $100k or so you can get a box with a few cores of it.

Note that hardware is not most important thing in computerchess nowadays. The impact of a good book is for example way more than whether you run on 8 cores or 800 cores. Hardware matters only when the differences between 2 programs are tiny. Especially it matters a lot when you let an engine play against itself (the so called "incest test" to quote Johan de Koning - not my words).

Yet of course everyone tries to do his best in every aspect of the game that influences the game. So you try to show up with good hardware.

For the nerds among you: reason why high clocked stuff is so expensive is because there is a relation O ( m ^ 3 ). So to get 1 Ghz higher is really very expensive as you have to put it to the power 3 with respect to power through the cpu and all kind of problems that start to exist (leakage etc). I'm not an expert enough there to explain that to you in a clear manner.

This is why we do not have 10Ghz production cpu's.

The thing that is very bad in limiting the total number of cores is
a) the timing, a few months before the world champs we suddenly get the email that the board being Levy, decided to limit things to 8 cores. Just when people have put MONEY and EFFORT in parallellizing their software for machines with more cores and/or other type of hardware.

but most important is
b) marketing. we get MORE attention as a worldchampionship when there is big hardware. TV, radio is suddenly interested if it is open hardware and shows up. In 2000 in London, the last "single processor microworldchampionship", there was NO ONE from the press for the computerchess.

Who is gonna look for a few nerds who play at retarded overclocked machines?

c) the equipment used to overclock is something you do NOT have at home. So believing that the hardware that actually shows up there is something you can buy in a shop is nonsense. Only some very big fanatics, who work for the government, they manage to achieve what is gonna show up there. So a limitation just means that the amateur engines like Sjeng and Jonny get hurt, it doesn't limit Hiarcs/Rybka.

d) the icga board is technoidiots. they never managed to correctly check hardware. I remember 2000 all too well. Back then it was still relative easy for a person to check. Now it is 2009, it is not so easy now. I would be very surprised if the board suddenly could.

e) As of today we do not even have a definition of what a 'core' is. And whether the box must be inside the tournament hall or is allowed to be remote. Is a 4 socket beckton machine allowed if you say you just use 8 cores out of it?

Is 8 fpga's allowed?

The tournament already happens in a few months time.

You guys realize that only teams with big sponsors can arrange a machine according to specs at last moment?

f) The ones who get impacted most by the new rules are the amateurs.
Now they must buy a 8 core box, next year a 16 core box?
Comeon, only the teams with sponsors can switch so easily.

What amateurs dislike most from events is when just operators show up, as operators ONLY show up if they can kick butt with an engine. There is very FEW operators who show EVER up when they cannot win. Now with Diep of course i manage to kick operators. but most amateurs cannot. What they are sick of, that is operators who get for free $1500 from icga for showing up there.

In 2008 world champs i understood there was at least 3 operators not from China to operate strong engines (Rybka, Hiarcs, Toga). I'm very sure without that $1500 for free odds would've been big that at least 2 out of 3 would not have shown up.

Vincent
About c:
I do not understand why do you consider sjeng to be amateur when it is a commercial program.

Sjeng is not weaker than hiarcs based on the ccrl rating list so there is no reason to include hiarcs as commercial and sjeng as amateur.


about f:I am against the new rule but I do not see how the amateurs suffer from it.
The rule does not say equal hardware for all but only give some limit for the hardware.

I wonder what is the difference in speed between the best 8 core machine that money can buy and the best machine that you can get for less than 1000$ and has at most 8 cores.

Uri
The prices are going down Uri indeed after the release of the i7 processor,but still....you can't buy an octal machine under 1000$,not yet 8-)
_No one can hit as hard as life.But it ain’t about how hard you can hit.It’s about how hard you can get hit and keep moving forward.How much you can take and keep moving forward….

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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by Mike S. » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:13 pm

bob wrote:Do we also limit what positional structures a program can evaluate? What about the search space? Do we limit the kinds of extensions so that one program can't see that much deeper than another?

(...) Why don't you find a group of _programmers_ that want to see such restrictions. I don't care what _users_ want or what _spectators_ want, in this regard.
Of course, none of the other elements you mention should be limited.

But I think, actually the chess programmers should be the first and the loudest, to demand uniform platform hardware and book limits for a WCCC (!; not generally, of course all of us would like to use the best available hardware "at home" and that is normal). Differences in hardware and books distort the competition between the chess software (codes) themselves. Opening books are supporting data.

Again, an opening isn't 20 or 30 moves but much less. As long as book moves are taken, there is no computer chess research happening.

I cannot believe that chess programmers are happy with opening theory battles and hardware races, at a WCCC. A clearly better engine may lose an important game against a weaker one, due to a super clever opening trap. Is that funny? You will probably say yes, very entertaining. Backslapping for the book author. - But in fact, it is a tragedy if World Champion titles are decided by such BS, or by hardware one has and the other one has not.

A book and hardware competition is useless.

Hardware means money (or good relations/privileges).

For my taste, with current technology also the 6-piece tablebases are absurd. They are useful for endgame research and for correspondence chess analysis, but in comp vs. comp games they are in the wrong place IMO. That certainly is again something I won't convince many people about. But maximum is not optimum.

Also, as Levy mentiones there ARE chess programmers who dislike such unlimited tournaments. Maybe they prefer not to talk much about it, but simply keep away. It is called "voting with the feet."
Regards, Mike

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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by Uri Blass » Mon Jan 05, 2009 10:35 pm

Mike S. wrote:
bob wrote:Do we also limit what positional structures a program can evaluate? What about the search space? Do we limit the kinds of extensions so that one program can't see that much deeper than another?

(...) Why don't you find a group of _programmers_ that want to see such restrictions. I don't care what _users_ want or what _spectators_ want, in this regard.
Of course, none of the other elements you mention should be limited.

But I think, actually the chess programmers should be the first and the loudest, to demand uniform platform hardware and book limits for a WCCC (!; not generally, of course all of us would like to use the best available hardware "at home" and that is normal). Differences in hardware and books distort the competition between the chess software (codes) themselves. Opening books are supporting data.

Again, an opening isn't 20 or 30 moves but much less. As long as book moves are taken, there is no computer chess research happening.

I cannot believe that chess programmers are happy with opening theory battles and hardware races, at a WCCC. A clearly better engine may lose an important game against a weaker one, due to a super clever opening trap. Is that funny? You will probably say yes, very entertaining. Backslapping for the book author. - But in fact, it is a tragedy if World Champion titles are decided by such BS, or by hardware one has and the other one has not.

A book and hardware competition is useless.

Hardware means money (or good relations/privileges).

For my taste, with current technology also the 6-piece tablebases are absurd. They are useful for endgame research and for correspondence chess analysis, but in comp vs. comp games they are in the wrong place IMO. That certainly is again something I won't convince many people about. But maximum is not optimum.

Also, as Levy mentiones there ARE chess programmers who dislike such unlimited tournaments. Maybe they prefer not to talk much about it, but simply keep away. It is called "voting with the feet."
World championship are not designed to find which program is best.
There are not enough games for that purpose.

If you like equal hardware and small opening book conditions then it is better if you look at rating lists like CEGT or CCRL and you do not need WCCC.

Even if people accept your ideas you may be able to see a program win the tournament inspite of not being the strongest thanks to luck simply because it was lucky to get position that it knows to play from the small book(assuming the book choice is random choice).

WCCC does not include hundreds of games for every program and there are tournaments that include hundreds of games for every program so I see no reason for you to care about WCCC.

You can consider it as unimportant tournament even if equal hardware and small books are accepted.

Uri

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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by George Tsavdaris » Mon Jan 05, 2009 11:14 pm

Spock wrote: I know Harvey said that when he had to explain to people that the winner was not necessarily the best software, due to hardware differences, people became confused and lost interest, and his push for publicity came to nothing. Well, nothing has changed in that regard, the new rule is useless, his push for publicity will still come to nothing if that is true.

Either unlimited hardware, or equal hardware for all.
So there is the argument/excuse for the change of rules, that people who spoke to Harvey are interested only about tournaments that the winner is the best software(engine).
And that can give a small justification that the rule's change was to the right direction?

Sorry but this is the most stupid thing i have ever heard! :D

First, even if equal hardware was used, then opening books are a big part of strength so these people would be disappointed to learn that still tournament's winner is not the best software.

Secondly even after opening books are the same for everyone, then again people would be disappointed to learn that still tournament's winner is not the best software as for that you need some thousand of games and definitely not 10-15 of WCCC.

As you see if people want to see which is the best software they just have to look to something other than looking at WCCC's winner. They should look at CCRL and CEGT lists that has equal hardware, very small opening books and thousand of games.

So what people say it's pointless anyway. Those people are ignorant and adding to their illusions(WCCC's winner=>best software) is not good.


And anyway, did even one single person of these ignorant, about CC, people, went or watched closely a WCCC any time? I doubt, so why we should care about what ignorant people about CC, think for a CC tournament?
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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by Mike S. » Mon Jan 05, 2009 11:28 pm

Uri Blass wrote: World championship are not designed to find which program is best.
There are not enough games for that purpose.
I know, but it should be a fair computer chess competition which makes sense, not an opening theory battle and not a hardware test. I want that engine code wins world champion titles, not super books or super hardware.

Fairness requires more than "same rules for all", especially if a lot of money may be involved. Some years ago, it was a very wise decision of the sheik who financed Hydra, not to participate in WCCCs. This decade is much different from the 1970s or the 1980s, in terms of top computer chess and the hardware used for it. Levy's decision is an update for ICGA which was required (and comes very late, but at least it comes now).
Regards, Mike

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Re: ICGA WCCC prospects ...

Post by diep » Mon Jan 05, 2009 11:47 pm

Mike S. wrote:
Uri Blass wrote: World championship are not designed to find which program is best.
There are not enough games for that purpose.
I know, but it should be a fair computer chess competition which makes sense, not an opening theory battle and not a hardware test. I want that engine code wins world champion titles, not super books or super hardware.

Fairness requires more than "same rules for all", especially if a lot of money may be involved. Some years ago, it was a very wise decision of the sheik who financed Hydra, not to participate in WCCCs. This decade is much different from the 1970s or the 1980s, in terms of top computer chess and the hardware used for it. Levy's decision is an update for ICGA which was required (and comes very late, but at least it comes now).
Why must computerchess suddenly do something that no grandmaster *ever* has been doing?

"Dear Mr Anand, you're not allowed to remember the openingsbooklines that you have studied the past 30 years, and as we know you have an EXCELLENT mind, remembering about every line you once analysed in your life, you REALLY must try hard to not remember it. Promised?"

Note that in past we had micro worldchampionships, but that rendered that little interest and that little sponsorship that ICGA was forced to make it open hardware.

Book limitations were tried in past, what programmers used to do then (for example Rebel if i remember well) was having the book inside the executable.

A tester of diep did do actually 2 weeks ago a test of diep versus latest chessbase engine from Frans Morsch using the 'noomen' testsuite. So book turned off, just that testsuite. I was very amazed that in a position both programs played from both sides, that in the logfile of diep i saw that Fritz took 0 seconds to still play 1 great move which, being a FM, i recognized as the superior bookmove in that position.

When i tried Fritz at that position without that move out of book, it would have played the wrong line and lost the position as a result as it would've gone into a total lost position.

Cheating is very effective.
Chessbase nor any company would never do that is it?

You understand what i'm trying to tell you?

Cheating gets done if it delivers easily elopoints. That's what happened in past that's what will happen in future. In fact in past it was a lot worse than it is now.

I can give you examples that you won't even believe yet they truely happened.

Entire world titles which ICCA simply sold.

In 1997 for example there was at least 2 titles. There was the ICGA microworld title which junior won (simply winning tournament) and there
was the 'commercial world title'. There was only 3 participants for the commercial world title.

Fritz joined for it, Virtual Chess and Chess System Tal.

Entry fee 5000 dollar.

Virtual chess won it.

Vincent

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