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Subject: Couple of chess programming questions

Author: Eli Liang

Date: 06:26:14 09/10/02


A couple of chess programming questions:

(1) Are there any uses for ProbCut and/or Multi-ProbCut in chess positions where
the variance of leaf-nodes is low?  What about the use of Warren Smith's BPIP or
Russell&Wefald's meta-greedy algorithms in chess?  Any wins?

(2) Is it practical to use partial-order bounding as an improvement over
conventional static evaluation?

(3) Reading Aske Plaat's search & re-search paper, it really seems like mtd(f)
is something of a magic bullet.  But I note it seems that more programs don't
use it than do (for example Crafty).  What is wrong with mtd(f) which Plaat
doesn't say?

(4) What are the current thoughts concerning bitboards/rotated-bitboards versus
conventional 0x88 or other algorithms?  Just looking at open source chess
programs, it doesn't seem that the chess programming community has come to a
consensus on relative performance... or have you?

(5) What is currently thought to be the best algorithm for autofitting the
static evaluation function parameters? DT's least-squares approach seems
simplest, but it seems as if a dozen other things have been tried too.  Is there
any best-of-breed approach here?

(6) Has anyone found any real "practical" benefits to fractional-ply extensions?

(7) Dennis Breuker has a paper comparing 5 different transposition table
replacement schemes.  Has any else been able to validate his results that
replacement should be based on the number of nodes searched and not search
depth?



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