World Chess Computer Champion?

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hgm
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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by hgm » Tue Feb 18, 2014 8:51 pm

Modern Times wrote:The way the Komodo team have been bullied into changing their website is yet another shameful episode in computer chess. They had every right to proclaim themselves as World Champions. That was not misleading.
No one bullied them into doing anything, and they could have done as they liked. They are not legally bound to pay any attention to what a bunch of fanatics write in a forum, and many of the posters, including you, actually expressed their support for them. But they were pointed out the error of their ways, and the better arguments convinced them!
What is misleading is the ICGA World Championship, where the winners splatter their websites (quite legitimately) with news of their victory, and some poor suckers think they are buying the market leading engines, when they are barely top ten these days. It isn't the ICGA's fault, they can't force people to participate, but they should recognize the fact that they are no longer attracting the quality of applicants worthy of the name "world championship", and change the title of their event accordingly.
Actually, I have a much better solution, that puts the blame where it lies: Houdini, Komodo and Stockfish register for the upcoming WCCC or WCSC. They are the ones who are misleading their potential customers by shirking to take their rightful place. Not ICGA.
Last edited by hgm on Tue Feb 18, 2014 8:52 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by Laskos » Tue Feb 18, 2014 8:51 pm

hgm wrote:
Laskos wrote:Well, TCEC has a resolving power of ~30 points. And sure you are being silly here, because establishing the strongest is the _goal_ of a World Championship, that a WC doesn't have the resolving power to do that is a negative feature of that competition. In games of humans this is often the case because of the limited human resources.
This is where you are wrong. That is the goal of a rating list. The goal of a WC is to promote competition by offering a juicy title the winner can carry for one year, with all the benefits it brings. As others here affirmed. Determining the absolute best no matter how minute the difference is just an obsession of you. You are quite alone in this.

If two participants are so close in abilities that for all intents and purposes they can be considered equal, one does not go to an infinite number of legs / games / sets / matches whatever to try and resolve that difference. That would be boaring. That is why in Tennis we have tie breaks, in Soccer we have penalty shootouts, in Volleyball we have ralleyport system, etc.

Because rating lists for Chess program versions have nowadays such an insanely high number of games, people think that differences of just a few Elo still have any meaning. While in fact they are of course dominated by systematic error, due to the small variety of opponents. It is totally useless trying to resolve small Elo differences by having the same two programs play ad nauseam against each other. This will not make the probability that the best wins any larger. Because you cannot determine who is best by playing just against a single opponent.
TCEC has ~30 points resolving power, WCCC ~150 points. No matter how you twist it, a World Championship is not finding out the most mediocre and lucky individual. Or the worst and luckiest. Not even poker is such debased. Winning a championship assumes both definitions of what I exemplified by dictionary. One can say that this particular championship allows for more or less luck, and more luck in many disciplines makes it boring (in other not). Maybe you enjoy gambling and lottery, that's why you prefer a lottery WCCC format. Well, it's your taste, but don't claim here all to be gamblers like you. Well, in ICGA WCCC format even your Joker has a chance to become a champion.

I think we have all to agree that ICGA WCCC from 1970es is as good as dead if they don't change the format.
Last edited by Laskos on Tue Feb 18, 2014 8:56 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by AdminX » Tue Feb 18, 2014 8:55 pm

hgm wrote:Fact is that HIARCS won the WCSC 2013 (so, not so WCCC, which went to Junior...). If you want to deny that, there is only one that looks stupid...

I guess the main stupidity here is that you assume that you have to be the best player to become World Champion. This is yet another misconception that is almost universally false in the world of sports. Character, determination, courage are just as important as skill.

The whole idea that you could claim to be World Champion when you are too chicken to even compete is utterly ridiculous.
M ANSARI wrote:There was also NO BIAS or NO IDIOTIC rules that disqualified participants and it INCLUDED ALL the top engines in the world ... something the ICGA can only dream about!
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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by hgm » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:14 pm

You apparently think that a World Championship where the outcome is not certain in advance is doomed. Logic of course dictates that exactly the opposite is true. If it really is the problem that programs refuse to participate because the 30-Elo advantage they believe to have on their opponents is not enough to guarantee a win in the given format, how do you think they would behave when the format guarantees them a certain loss because they have a small disadvantage? Do you really think that if losing by a large, but not inconceivable amount of bad luck already deters them, that losing for sure will make them line up in huge crowds to participate and get a beating?

Making the outcome predictable will be the death knell for any tournament for sure, as it will deter all but the number one from participating, while some amount of unpredictability might deter the number one, but is favorable for all others. If people are only prepared to participate when they have more than 50% chance to win, there will never be more than a single participant...

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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by Graham Banks » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:30 pm

Modern Times wrote:The way the Komodo team have been bullied into changing their website is yet another shameful episode in computer chess. They had every right to proclaim themselves as World Champions. That was not misleading.
Even Martin doesn't refer to TCEC as a world championship, so TCEC champion is the most appropriate title.

As stated, a footnote could rightly state that many regard the TCEC as an unofficial world championship.

Equally so, others could rightly proclaim that rating lists should be recognised as indicating the correct order of strength.

It's an endless argument.
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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by mwyoung » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:41 pm

hgm wrote:
Modern Times wrote:The way the Komodo team have been bullied into changing their website is yet another shameful episode in computer chess. They had every right to proclaim themselves as World Champions. That was not misleading.
No one bullied them into doing anything, and they could have done as they liked. They are not legally bound to pay any attention to what a bunch of fanatics write in a forum, and many of the posters, including you, actually expressed their support for them. But they were pointed out the error of their ways, and the better arguments convinced them!
What is misleading is the ICGA World Championship, where the winners splatter their websites (quite legitimately) with news of their victory, and some poor suckers think they are buying the market leading engines, when they are barely top ten these days. It isn't the ICGA's fault, they can't force people to participate, but they should recognize the fact that they are no longer attracting the quality of applicants worthy of the name "world championship", and change the title of their event accordingly.
Actually, I have a much better solution, that puts the blame where it lies: Houdini, Komodo and Stockfish register for the upcoming WCCC or WCSC. They are the ones who are misleading their potential customers by shirking to take their rightful place. Not ICGA.
I want to point out to all that no one could bully Komodo into doing the right thing, and they did correct the error.

And the reason why was because the credibility price began costing more then the gains from the false claim. That is business, and business was why the false claim was put there in the first place.

If stockfish would have made the same false claim instead of komodo by claiming championship status. Komodo would be on my side because it would hurt their business, not because it would mislead and hurt customers, as stockfish is a free product. It is business...
Last edited by mwyoung on Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:51 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by syzygy » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:45 pm

michiguel wrote:People still use #2 a lot.
Sure, especially when they talk about world champions...........

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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by Laskos » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:47 pm

hgm wrote:You apparently think that a World Championship where the outcome is not certain in advance is doomed. Logic of course dictates that exactly the opposite is true. If it really is the problem that programs refuse to participate because the 30-Elo advantage they believe to have on their opponents is not enough to guarantee a win in the given format, how do you think they would behave when the format guarantees them a certain loss because they have a small disadvantage? Do you really think that if losing by a large, but not inconceivable amount of bad luck already deters them, that losing for sure will make them line up in huge crowds to participate and get a beating?

Making the outcome predictable will be the death knell for any tournament for sure, as it will deter all but the number one from participating, while some amount of unpredictability might deter the number one, but is favorable for all others. If people are only prepared to participate when they have more than 50% chance to win, there will never be more than a single participant...
Sure, 100 meters sprint is dead because of Usain Bolt.

Then one had in such luck-prone sport as soccer FC Barcelona winning everything for a long period of time, leading in all rating lists (serious ones, by FIFA), Champions League died? Then again, Spain becoming World Champion was not a surprise according to the same FIFA rating lists. Was that FIFA WC boring? It seems even soccer luck-prone competitions are better than ICGA WCCC in discerning the best player in a competition. And nobody complains that soccer is too much deterministic.
Then take tennis: there is an official rating list too, when Federer topped it for 5 years, tennis died off?

Generally, it's good to keep the resolving power of the competition similar to the typical differences between competitors. There will be a nuanced interplay of true strength and luck. Not a mess of mostly luck. What do you expect in a 10 games match with all top engines participating? That's much worse than poker.

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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by Rebel » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:54 pm

bob wrote:
Rebel wrote:
bob wrote:
Rebel wrote:
Harvey Williamson wrote:Leagues last months. World Championships and Olympic games etc tend to last a couple of weeks.
Harvey,

Every self respecting sport has a body that is recognized and endorsed by the vast majority of sportsmen / women. What once was since 2011 is no longer. Whatever the reason you have to act.
You keep making that pronouncement - the ICGA is no longer recognized.
Selective reading on your end, see the red above.

There is no reason to involve the Rybka controversy into the discussion. Forget about Rybka, it is what it is and doing nothing won't solve the above problem, the last 2½ year has proven that.

You will remember the days the WCCC and WMCCC were the yearly highlight, the magazins and CC fora exploded. That popularity halted (quite roughly) exactly when?

Circa 1997, to be exact. I assume you realize the significance of that date? Never was the same after that. Suddenly no TV crews showed up, no vendors kicked in tens of thousands of dollars or provided special hardware, etc.
You are not reading again. The WCCC's from 1998-2010 were just fine regarding popularity.

Now look up the number of postings of the last WCCC (Japan) here, there are hardly any.


You don't have to be a prophet to predict how this will end, if things already are not irreversable in the meantime by the 2½ year lack of action from David. As if doing nothing ever solved a problem.
Quite often, doing NOTHING is much better than doing something WRONG.
Yeah, do nothing about vice-world-champion LOOP (Amsterdam 2007), do nothing about Thinker, do not investgate Fritz 14.

Yeah... that kind of sweeping things under the carpet by silencing it.

I told you time and time again there will be no LOOP verdict. You promised there would be. Tell me your progress.

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Re: World Chess Computer Champion?

Post by Laskos » Tue Feb 18, 2014 9:56 pm

syzygy wrote:
Laskos wrote:
syzygy wrote:
Laskos wrote:Champion
1. One that wins first place or first prize in a competition.
2. One that is clearly superior or has the attributes of a winner


I think the second definition is mostly insinuated to by the marketers.
Note that the second meaning of "champion" has nothing to do with competing in competitions. Before the text was changed, the Komodo website clearly suggested that Komodo had won a world championship.

As I wrote earlier, Komodo is the current TCEC champion.
Nevertheless, the general public (with helpful insinuations) mingles these two definitions. One buys not for an obscure title pompously named, but for being superior. Also, one assumes that winning the first place is not finding out who is the luckiest. Or who has the least abilities in that discipline.
What is the point? That commercial motives may have been a reason to write "world champion" instead of "TCEC champion"?
Sure, as does Hiarcs team and Junior team. Because the second definition pokes into mind of everybody thinking of a "champion". "World Champion".

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