Computer engine use Chess forum

16 replies. Last post: 2020-08-23

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Computer engine use
  • lazyplayer at 2020-08-19

    Is it possible to use computer engine here without cheating? I mean, openly, by declaring it?

    I think the most beautiful aspect of chess are the deep strategical concepts and they’re also precisely those that engines don’t do very well on their own and thus I would like to play with the support of an engine so that I can focus on what’s more beautiful for me to think about.

  • add3993 ★ at 2020-08-19

    I might suggest using a different account with the word ‘bot’ in the name (or maybe ‘botplus’ for bot + human?).  I don’t play chess here, but if I did I would know of your strong human Hex play, and might rush into a game without checking for any such declarations.  Or someone looking over the rankings might assume you’re a GM-level player.

    On the subject of ‘deep concepts’, (check me on this but) I remember reading that the value to chess-AIs of human expert assistance has dwindled if not outright disappeared since the Deep Blue days.  If humans can’t help computers, then do they understand strategy any more deeply?  Perhaps more ‘explicitly’, but that seems like a bias toward our preferred forms of understanding/expressing things.

  • lazyplayer at 2020-08-19

    Yes using a different account seems a decent a solution. I wish everyone in the chess community would the same. In fact I wish there was a “I'm a bot” flag in our accounts, something that we declare when creating account, and something that the admin will change for us if we’re caught cheating...

  • lazyplayer at 2020-08-19

    Regarding value of assistance, I can use a mathematical argument, no matter how small it is, it’s still non-zero. ;)

  • lazyplayer at 2020-08-19

    And btw, I’m very weak at hex, it just happens that we’re all weak and you can reach top 3 (among humans) in hex while being very weak.

  • lazyplayer at 2020-08-19

    Hex now is where Chess was, say, in the very early 1800... the top players of the era were not professional, they were not even close.

  • add3993 ★ at 2020-08-19

    That’s why the Hex community should be clamoring for AI on the level of Mootwo, with evaluation function, to be made available for download (for faster play, essential for real training).  Free or not.  It would be the best thing ever for the development of a skilled player base.

  • Richard Malaschitz ★ at 2020-08-21

    All bots will be forbidden from 1.1.2021. Now is not really hard to create strong bot. For example I have this excellent book: https://www.amazon.co.uk/Deep-Learning-Game-Max-Pumperla/dp/1617295329 Programming bots is great (for example for analyse, search a new games and variant).  

  • Soggy China at 2020-08-21

    How about Super (unless you can find a better name) Tournaments

    Open to anyone but aimed at:-

    1 Super Bots, calculate move over several days and play maybe an hour before time is up

    2 Bots, when on line calculate and play

    3 Assisted user, plays from computer program

    4 Team, players vote on a move, as soon as 50% of team pick same move play it, else if time up play favourite


  • lazyplayer at 2020-08-22

    Richard, personally, for me, the hex bots here have added something. I would love if they at least remain available for challenges.

  • add3993 ★ at 2020-08-22

    Richard, I don’t have time or inclination to program my own Hex bot.  It is not an easy undertaking, even for many computing professionals; the deep-learning recipes often require VERY large training time to give really strong results; Hex has seen much less effort than Chess/Go (see Chao Gao’s PhD thesis for the state of the art); and AFAIK no one has bothered to make a really strong one that they are willing to share in a convenient .exe format.

    Therefore, by forbidding Hex bots, you would be eliminating one of the most important contributions of this site right now, which is the ability to play against and learn from such bots, which represent the future of the hobby.  

    This is the only place online that is even semi-serious about developing expert human play in Hex.  The expert community is quite small, there are no professional players/teachers, and there is no commercial market for Hex bots.  In summary, I urge you to reconsider.  (As for Chess and Go, the situation is very different, and I have no strong opinion.)

  • Dvd Avins at 2020-08-22

    I think they should be forbidden from tournaments and any other organized play, but not from invitational games.

  • richyfourtytwo ★ at 2020-08-23

    I agree with Dvd Avins, especially since there always have been AI programmers in this community.

  • Paul Wiselius at 2020-08-23

    I also suggest a different account, ending with “_3h”, which stands for Dreihirn (Three brains) as Ingo Althofer once introduced. Correspondence players often use more then one engine to analyze a position.

    I also would like separate chess960 tournaments, where especially in the opening phase a human could have more insight in the specific problems of a position. 

  • Paul Wiselius at 2020-08-23

    And I can agree with excluding bots from the regular tournaments. But it should be possible to allow them in user-organized tournaments, via some flag that allows bots. 

  • David J Bush ★ at 2020-08-23

    I’m glad I noticed your comment here in the Chess forum, Richard. I am starting a General forum thread.

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