Computer Chess Club Archives




Subject: Novag Super Constellation (very old chess computer)

Author: John Coffey

Date: 13:11:35 09/18/98

In 1984 I purchased a Novag Super Constellation.  Mine quit working a few years

What impressed me the most about this program was the strength for its time
considering that it was only running on a 4 mhz 6502.  Granted it was no
master, but the USCF gave it a rating of 2018.  Those ratings given to
computers were pretty controversial, and may still be controversial today
on newer machines.

My understanding is that it only evaluated positional ideas at the base of the
search tree.  Although that is rather limited, it gave the machine a balance
of positional and tactical strength (for its time) that still probably could
beat most tournament players.  It seemed especially strong at speed chess.

I wonder if anyone has one of these that still work?  I would be curious if
it still could hold its rating, and if gets totally crushed by better programs
running on machines that are hundreds of times faster.

John Coffey

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