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Subject: Re: Time to implement Learning

Author: martin fierz

Date: 14:35:51 02/26/04

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On February 26, 2004 at 17:19:20, Tom Likens wrote:

>
>Well, it's time I broke down and implemented learning.  I've noticed that
>my program has become a target for a few carbon-based lifeforms on ICC. What
>I've ascertained is that some (lower-rated) players will play the program over
>and over in blitz until they manage a win against it.  Then they play the
>same game over and over and grab the rating points.  It works because a win
>by the program only nets back a point or two while a loss transfers a large
>number of points to the lower rated player.  The program, being only as smart
>as its programmer, happily plays the same (losing) game over and over :(
>
>I'm actually surprised that anyone takes their ICC rating that serious, but
>apparently they do.  Of course I could no play them, but what's the fun in
>that?  Besides that seems cowardly ;-)
>
>Learning would get rid of the problem entirely and make the program's book
>better as a bonus.  So when I get back from the artic reaches of Minnesota
>(it's work-related, don't ask) learning is next up on the docket.  I guess I
>should kill the program until I get back home.  I was going to let it play
>for the next two weeks continously, but I'm not so sure now (or maybe I
>should just let it limbo, "...how low can you go")
>
>regards,
>--tom

hi tom,

i have seen the same behavior of the low-rated players. in fact, this constitues
abuse as far as ICC is concerned - you can report them and they will lose their
rating points again :-)
but when this happened to me, i never reported anybody. after all, these crazy
guys are in fact great testers: they will try and try and try until they find a
way to beat up your program. which isn't all that bad, because mostly there is
something to learn from that...
i solved that type of problem more or less by adding a very broad opening book
to my program, now the abusers at least can't shoot at a sitting duck any more.

cheers
  martin



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