Author: Ryan B.
Date: 11:17:34 02/17/06
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On February 17, 2006 at 04:17:38, Vasik Rajlich wrote: >On February 17, 2006 at 02:33:32, Jouni Uski wrote: > >>Is it possible to disassemble exe-file, which is zipped and/or copy protected >>like Fruit 2.2.1? Where are disassemblers downloadable? >> >>thanks >> >>Jouni > >IDA Pro is easily the best. Technically it is not legal (although even this is >not quite that simple, there have been a number of court cases, etc), in >practice in computer chess you can do it. > >Just a general comment though: it is _extremely_ hard to figure out the >innovations in a program. Basically, I would say that in practice it is >impossible. Yes, you can locate the move generator, because you already know >what that looks like and what it does. But understanding the evaluation terms, >or adjustments to search depth, would require an ungodly effort, especially for >a complex program. Let me put it like this: every aspiring computer chess >programmer has been very strongly tempted to try his hand at disassembling. When >I started computer chess, Shredder was the king. We all wanted to know what he >was doing. And nobody found out. Not Chrily Donninger. Not Frans Morsch. And not >any of the then-amateurs. > >You'll find some people posting here for example about what they "found" in >Rybka. So far it has always just been transparent guessing based on program >behavior, with the disassembly argument used to make it seem legit. > >Vas The point it not to disassemble to the point that you can carefully comment the code and understand it inside and out. The point is to get a feel for the data structure and look for specific things. For example, I have learned some concepts from Rybkas search but I do not understand the details and would not be able to reproduce the parts that get my attention at this time exactly as Rybka does. When I have time I will try to figure out some of the details just for my know curiosity but by no means do I think this will make me a better chess programmer. About the comment that every aspiring chess programmer has been tempted to disassemble, I do not agree on the base that I have never cared what was inside other programs that are not open source until I saw one that acted in a way that I felt it was hiding something. The ideas available on open forums combined with what is in ones own head should be more than enough to write a good chess program. Ryan
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