Computer Chess Club Archives




Subject: Re: WMCCC Hardware

Author: Chris Whittington

Date: 08:10:11 10/04/97

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On October 03, 1997 at 14:06:34, Bruce Moreland wrote:

>On October 03, 1997 at 13:37:18, Chris Whittington wrote:
>>On the issue of the fast alphas: hmmmmm. Its going to confuse the issue.
>>For sure a win by a program on faster then PC hardware is going to open
>>up questions. Personally, I'ld prefer to see it restricted to top
>>Pentium Pro speeds.
>I thought about this a little bit more.
>Last year, when Dark Thought brought a 500 mhz Alpha to Jakarta, my
>first thought was "not fair".  I tried to think of reasons to support
>this and I couldn't come up with any serious reasons.
>If we weren't talking about an Alpha chip, if we were talking about a
>350 mhz Pentium Pro, nobody would have a problem.  Everyone would either
>get one, or express woe because they couldn't afford one, but nobody
>would question its legality or fairness.
>The reason people question the legality or fairness of an Alpha is
>simply that it is not an Intel chip.

No way.

People question the fairness because the bloody thing runs at 50,000
GigaHertz and the only way to get one is to be a student at a university
computer science department. Now it seems they can be got by anybody
crazy enough to spend the money. The end-users and opinion makers want
the WMCCC to be a reasonably fair tournament, so they can believe that
the winner is the best; but with so many categories of machine available
this is no longer possible. And we'll all be talking about the winning
PROGRAM, that's how we consider it; only now we'll have to speak it out
loud every time: the winning program and hardware combination. Its a
drag. The nieve won't understand. And so on and so on.


> People don't want to buy a machine
>that won't run their current software (at least not as well).  They
>don't want to buy something that they think they can't use for anything
>else.  They don't want to have to develop software for a machine that is
>off-brand -- a program written specifically for Alpha would not sell
>very many copies.
>I don't think that any of these issues should disqualify the Alpha.

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