Is computer chess "solved"?

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bhlangonijr
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Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by bhlangonijr » Sat Mar 19, 2011 8:34 pm

It seems that Anthony Cozzie has solved the chess game and haven't told us how. :)
Clearly, almost all chess engines around are using essentially the same search techniques and algorithms: ID + PVS + Null Move + LMR and so on... Some do this differently, with some new tweaks, more knowledge, less bugs, etc. But, essentially, it is all the same.

The current approach we are using to make computers play chess is very efficient and successful, although it appears that after the advent of the null move (Late move reduction, maybe?), we are, after all, only fine tuning and tweaking to improve a chess engine.

Do you think computer chess is mostly "solved" (as stated by Anthony Cozzie) and why?

My opition is that we are not nearly close to solve it. We are all struggling to take more from the classic approaches, and the fact we are making it in a very slow pace, doesn't mean computer chess is "solved".

Another thing I guess I didn't get straight: Is Cozzie's assertion "the computer chess is mostly solved", the same as "the game of chess is solved"? If yes, I presume he thinks that the current classic approach is the best one can get...

Regards,

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Graham Banks
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Re: Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by Graham Banks » Sat Mar 19, 2011 8:38 pm

bhlangonijr wrote:.....Do you think computer chess is mostly "solved" (as stated by Anthony Cozzie) and why?

My opition is that we are not nearly close to solve it. We are all struggling to take more from the classic approaches, and the fact we are making it in a very slow pace, doesn't mean computer chess is "solved".......
How can it be solved when programmers keep coming up with new innovations to raise the bar higher than it was previously?
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Christopher Conkie
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Re: Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by Christopher Conkie » Sat Mar 19, 2011 8:51 pm

Graham Banks wrote:
bhlangonijr wrote:.....Do you think computer chess is mostly "solved" (as stated by Anthony Cozzie) and why?

My opition is that we are not nearly close to solve it. We are all struggling to take more from the classic approaches, and the fact we are making it in a very slow pace, doesn't mean computer chess is "solved".......
How can it be solved when programmers keep coming up with new innovations to raise the bar higher than it was previously?
When endgame tablebases meet in the middle with opening theory then it will be solved.

When is that?

Not is our lifetimes....nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next......ad infinitum......

If they do solve it in 4765, it will not matter to me. I will have enjoyed the insolubility of it all.

This is not tic tac toe..... it's much more than that.

:)

Chris

PS It must be profound night..... :)

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Re: Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by bob » Sat Mar 19, 2011 8:59 pm

bhlangonijr wrote:It seems that Anthony Cozzie has solved the chess game and haven't told us how. :)
Clearly, almost all chess engines around are using essentially the same search techniques and algorithms: ID + PVS + Null Move + LMR and so on... Some do this differently, with some new tweaks, more knowledge, less bugs, etc. But, essentially, it is all the same.

The current approach we are using to make computers play chess is very efficient and successful, although it appears that after the advent of the null move (Late move reduction, maybe?), we are, after all, only fine tuning and tweaking to improve a chess engine.

Do you think computer chess is mostly "solved" (as stated by Anthony Cozzie) and why?

My opition is that we are not nearly close to solve it. We are all struggling to take more from the classic approaches, and the fact we are making it in a very slow pace, doesn't mean computer chess is "solved".

Another thing I guess I didn't get straight: Is Cozzie's assertion "the computer chess is mostly solved", the same as "the game of chess is solved"? If yes, I presume he thinks that the current classic approach is the best one can get...

Regards,
Doubtful. This same discussion has come up several times in the past 40 years of computer chess activity. And each time some new idea comes along that rekindles interest and progress...

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Re: Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by Terry McCracken » Sun Mar 20, 2011 12:43 am

Christopher Conkie wrote:
Graham Banks wrote:
bhlangonijr wrote:.....Do you think computer chess is mostly "solved" (as stated by Anthony Cozzie) and why?

My opition is that we are not nearly close to solve it. We are all struggling to take more from the classic approaches, and the fact we are making it in a very slow pace, doesn't mean computer chess is "solved".......
How can it be solved when programmers keep coming up with new innovations to raise the bar higher than it was previously?
When endgame tablebases meet in the middle with opening theory then it will be solved.

When is that?

Not is our lifetimes....nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next nor the next......ad infinitum......

If they do solve it in 4765, it will not matter to me. I will have enjoyed the insolubility of it all.

This is not tic tac toe..... it's much more than that.

:)

Chris

PS It must be profound night..... :)
Chess is indeed a profound game but for computers it appears to be too deep more than too profound as odd as that sounds, it's defeated by the sheer force of numbers rather than complexity.

Maybe by the end of this century chess will be weakly solved most likely when were long gone but if it's ever fully solved that will probably be in the rather distant future, quantum computing will be involved. If a single atom could store enough bits of data, many millions or billions than there may be a full solution to chess one day.

As it stands we don't know. I'd like to know beyond doubt what I believe to be true, chess is a draw with best play. If it isn't I'd like to know before I die, that and a mission to mars. :P
Terry McCracken

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Re: Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by Ferdy » Sun Mar 20, 2011 1:24 am

bhlangonijr wrote:It seems that Anthony Cozzie has solved the chess game and haven't told us how. :)
Clearly, almost all chess engines around are using essentially the same search techniques and algorithms: ID + PVS + Null Move + LMR and so on... Some do this differently, with some new tweaks, more knowledge, less bugs, etc. But, essentially, it is all the same.

The current approach we are using to make computers play chess is very efficient and successful, although it appears that after the advent of the null move (Late move reduction, maybe?), we are, after all, only fine tuning and tweaking to improve a chess engine.

Do you think computer chess is mostly "solved" (as stated by Anthony Cozzie) and why?

My opition is that we are not nearly close to solve it. We are all struggling to take more from the classic approaches, and the fact we are making it in a very slow pace, doesn't mean computer chess is "solved".

Another thing I guess I didn't get straight: Is Cozzie's assertion "the computer chess is mostly solved", the same as "the game of chess is solved"? If yes, I presume he thinks that the current classic approach is the best one can get...

Regards,
If I may devide the game into phases, in computer chess the ending is now solved (5/6 piece ending), the opening is I guess also solved, (computers do not need to memorize all those openings compared to humans) the middle game is what we are contesting now, of course the game of chess is not yet solved.

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Re: Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by Steve Maughan » Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:20 am

Chess is certainly not solved. But computers now play at a level way beyond normal human capabilities (and significantly beyond Grandmaster level). In this sense strength increase are of little to no significance for humans. But they are of significant to other programs.

Steve

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Re: Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by bhlangonijr » Sun Mar 20, 2011 2:07 pm

bob wrote: Doubtful. This same discussion has come up several times in the past 40 years of computer chess activity. And each time some new idea comes along that rekindles interest and progress...
Agreed. I found his statement odd, specially because he said it comes from his background as PhD. Well, there is no scientific background in his statement.

Regards,

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Re: Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by Terry McCracken » Sun Mar 20, 2011 4:33 pm

Steve Maughan wrote:Chess is certainly not solved. But computers now play at a level way beyond normal human capabilities (and significantly beyond Grandmaster level). In this sense strength increase are of little to no significance for humans. But they are of significant to other programs.

Steve
I think that the best corr. players will still beat any program, any computer and will do so for a long time to come.
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Re: Is computer chess "solved"?

Post by peter » Sun Mar 20, 2011 4:51 pm

Graham Banks wrote:
bhlangonijr wrote:.....Do you think computer chess is mostly "solved" (as stated by Anthony Cozzie) and why?

My opition is that we are not nearly close to solve it. We are all struggling to take more from the classic approaches, and the fact we are making it in a very slow pace, doesn't mean computer chess is "solved".......
How can it be solved when programmers keep coming up with new innovations to raise the bar higher than it was previously?
Hi!

I made some nosy questions to Anthony Cozzie in his posting about the longer article and the reason was just my doubt about the computer chess mostly solved thing.
I'm not a programmer and don't understand enough to deal with the ideas of automatically tuning parameters of engines but even if this would work perfectly sooner or later, the point for me is this:
You say programmers coming up with innovations raising the bar would guarantee progress.
This is only rigth if we believe in Elo measured by automatic engines' matches.

If the statistics are even made properly but the books and positions of starting the matches get too short comparative to the engines' depth of calculation (I mean, what are 10 to 16 half plies today?), the resulting Elo indeed dont tell any story different to the matches starting from the one and only very initial position itself again and again, doesn't it?

Concerning this, matches like those for normal rating lists of today might produce higher and higher Elo without any real meaning about the engines' development as for going deeper and deeper into chess as it is played by human masters since a very long time.

Development controlled by such measurements of Elo only might indeed get engines' chess a more and more autarcic (autistic :)) thing.

Engines' win or save draw heuristics might work better and better in matches against each other but there was no way for human beeings to profit from this kind of further developments any more.

It could get to a point where you could leave engines fully alone playing their own kind of chess, tuning their parameters automatically and coming to a solution of their own game after years of lonesome playing and this solution might be a remis in 260 moves but it could be total nonsense for a human chess player.
:)

I doubt Celo (computer chess Elo) since a rather long time now, since there isn't any way of comparing them to human ones anymore. The more we believe in them gotten by automatic engine-engine- matches with short books and short time control only, the more computer chess might be solved indeed but not as for progress in playing chess but as for progress in playing computer chess.

Ephraim Kishon's picture of the machine comes to my mind, that plants the potatoe, harvests it, cooks and peels it and eats it up.
:)
You know he was an author of chess books too
Peter.

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