chess programming - predictions for the next 5 years

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Ovyron
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Re: chess programming - predictions for the next 5 years

Post by Ovyron » Wed Feb 06, 2019 7:32 am

Dann Corbit wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:01 pm
We humans are really, really bad at predicting the future.
Nah, the problem is we don't have enough humans making predictions. Have the entire population on Earth (that can communicate) predict how the world will be in 2023, being as detailed as possible, and just by sheer numbers, there'll be a considerable number of people that get every detail of their prediction right, even if their predictions have nothing to do with others on the group (because they'd focus on different things...)

Humanity has written so much fiction in its history that it was impossible for some of them to fail in their prediction, which happens once most possibilities are covered.

So there's a chance I hit the nail on the head:

Within the next 5 years someone will find a way to "unblackbox" neural networks]. Currently it's hard to know what are they doing, and make tweaks. You need to keep training and wait until that lucky moment that triggers some learning that causes the to net play a better move in some situations, worse in others, but stronger overall to keep the change, and go up because those changes accumulate.

If you were able to "reverse-engineer" the black box, it'd happen like what happened to Rybka, people would be able to program chess engines that mimick, and produce the moves of nn, but using readable code, and then the sky will be the limit, as the code will not rely on minimax or alpha beta, the new paradigm will leave engines of today behind, and engines with the new paradigm will make Houdini 6 look as weak as Rybka 3 looks compared to it.

I've been discussing the future of computer chess since 12 years ago. Back then I was naive and believed that a 3600 CCRL engine would be very close to perfection, able to avoid losing any game. Now I know that the distance to perfection is still veeery large.

Stockfish 10 with 5men TBs still gives 0.08 scores to lost positions at depth 60. I play at time controls of the order of 50 days per game, with 50 day increment every 10 moves, and under those conditions it's clear state of the art engines still suck at 1 hour/move. As the current state of things are going, you'll eventually have engines that play like that only needing one minute, so they'll beat today's engines by the same magnitude of a 1 minute v 1 hour handicap. But those moves will still suck.

It's just that there's no current entity that is able to play the quality moves this fast, that is able to find the moves that takes weeks to find on these long correspondence time controls. For this you need another shift.

I saw such a shift coming, and when I saw Alpha Zero, I thought "this is it!", but there's only so much you can do with evolutionary algorithms, to do what I mean you need design.

Maybe in the future you will not have something like Leela Zero training on chess games itself to become stronger, but producing thousands of chess engines with the new paradigm. The difference will be that a human will be able to look at the code and see what works and what doesn't and only keep the best possible code that produces the best moves.

Because, a chess engine that could have some 6000 elo on the CCRL could theoretically exist, and if you had it in your harddrive right now, it'll be just some exe file, perhaps smaller than a MB, and it would consist of just 0s and 1s in some combination. A new paradigm could just find the right combination.

Otherwise, General Artificial Intelligence makes its appearance and is able to train in a day what a human would take 5000 years to learn, so it better be damn good at chess. But perhaps next decade...
Make someone happy today.

smatovic
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Re: chess programming - predictions for the next 5 years

Post by smatovic » Wed Feb 06, 2019 12:22 pm

It was already said, Texel tuning was the beginning and neural networks are
a black box...

So, like others, i predict within 5 years a machine learning technique
that produces a) an evaluation function and b) ab pruning methods
that are 1) readable for humans and 2) powerful as neural networks but
3) faster than current gpgpu driven neural networks.

5+ years...
Moore's Law slows down resp. comes to an end,
current and future CPUs/GPUs consist of multichip modules,
memory bandwidth increases, memory latency decreases,
we will learn to use our available resources more efficient.

10+ years
An alternative technique to silicon based transistors is available,
based on Quantum Computers or Photonics or Memristors...

--
Srdja

grahamj
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Full name: Graham Jones

Re: chess programming - predictions for the next 5 years

Post by grahamj » Wed Feb 06, 2019 4:29 pm

I don't think anyone will be able to "unblackbox" neural networks in 5 years. ML researchers would love to be able to do this, but I predict very slow progress in general, and almost none in chess.

I shouldn't have said "Interest in neural nets will wane...", what I really meant was "deep convolutional nets", or "deep learning", not "neural nets".

Oh, and here's another one. There will be little interest in the "zero" philosophy in 5 years.
Graham Jones, www.indriid.com

Hrvoje Horvatic
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Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2014 12:53 pm

Re: chess programming - predictions for the next 5 years

Post by Hrvoje Horvatic » Sat Feb 09, 2019 7:44 pm

Dann Corbit wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:01 pm
We humans are really, really bad at predicting the future[*].
Hello Dann,

small digression... long time ago, in 1999., when I started with chess programming, there was very little material available online... one of the rare places where I got my chess stuff was your ftp server... and I never got the chance to thank you for that, and for all the other good things you have done... soooo, thanx buddy... :D

back to the story...

yes, humans are notoriously bad at predicting future... but if you split prediction in 2 components, you may find out that guessing the direction of the general trend is much easier than guessing exact timing of it... many smart people correctly predicted that financial melt-down (as seen globally in 2008/2009) MUST happen... and many smart people lost money because they started shorting waaaaaay too early... :) just like objects seen in rear-view mirror seem to be further away than they actually are, analogously most of the people see future coming at much faster pace than it actually is...

I think we will all fail miserably at timing, but it might be fun to see what trends do we all expect...

Hrvoje Horvatic
Posts: 14
Joined: Mon Nov 10, 2014 12:53 pm

Re: chess programming - predictions for the next 5 years

Post by Hrvoje Horvatic » Sat Feb 09, 2019 8:08 pm

cdani wrote:
Sun Feb 03, 2019 10:30 pm
My attemps are mostly improving Andscacs positionally, without forgetting other more standard approaches. Not much success for the moment...
I feel your pain... improving evaluation function is hard... it seems that cognitive distance between ideas in our head and C/C++ code is too big for us, and there is no shortcut, no easy way to "translate" ideas into code...

To make things even harder, some of the ideas that we call "chess theory" CAN'T be successfully "translated" because plainly they don't work in chess engine...

OTOH, Andscacs plays strong chess, and the evolution of Andscacs was pretty fast, so I don't think you have to be very sad... :D

Dann Corbit
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Re: chess programming - predictions for the next 5 years

Post by Dann Corbit » Tue Feb 12, 2019 7:27 pm

Hrvoje Horvatic wrote:
Sat Feb 09, 2019 7:44 pm
Dann Corbit wrote:
Tue Feb 05, 2019 8:01 pm
We humans are really, really bad at predicting the future[*].
Hello Dann,

small digression... long time ago, in 1999., when I started with chess programming, there was very little material available online... one of the rare places where I got my chess stuff was your ftp server... and I never got the chance to thank you for that, and for all the other good things you have done... soooo, thanx buddy... :D
{snip}
You are welcome. I think we all have benefited from the richness of the computer chess community over the years.
Taking ideas is not a vice, it is a virtue. We have another word for this. It is called learning.
But sharing ideas is an even greater virtue. We have another word for this. It is called teaching.

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