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Subject: Re: Most brilliant novelty from cct7 Witchess-Arasan

Author: Uri Blass

Date: 10:25:05 02/15/05

Go up one level in this thread

On February 15, 2005 at 12:59:09, Vincent Diepeveen wrote:

>On February 15, 2005 at 12:40:22, John Merlino wrote:
>>On February 15, 2005 at 12:36:10, John Merlino wrote:
>>>>I hope that you realize 750 rating points means roughly 0% chance.
>>>>What is the chance in YOUR opinion a program without book in 2005 has to win a
>>>>world champs event?
>>>>If you say 0%, that means 700+ rating points.
>>>I'll try to answer all of your posts in this one response, so as to not have to
>>>bounce around this thread.
>>>The obvious flaw in your argument above is that you are all of a sudden talking
>>>about winning a championship, but *I* am talking about using ratings to
>>>determine the statistical likelihood of SCORING POINTS in a single game, which
>>>has been the point of this discussion, unless I am grossly mistaken.
>>>As somebody else alluded to in this thread, you can be less than 300 points
>>>behind the highest ranked person in a tournament. But if you are the
>>>lowest-ranked player in this tournament, and there are a lot of other
>>>participants, your statistical chances of winning the tournament are practically
>>>So, I agree with you that a program going into the computer world championships
>>>without a book has close to a 0% chance of winning the tournament. But this
>>>would also be true if all programs were of theoretically equal strength, and not
>>>having a book only decresed the strength by 300 points.
>>>You also refer to a human playing some very large number of games (I think you
>>>said 5000?) against a program without a book, eventually allowing the human (or
>>>engine with learning) to beat the program close to 100% of the time. This is
>>>also WAY outside the boundaries of this discussion. But the clear refutation of
>>>that argument would be to say "Maybe so, but what happens in the first 10-20
>>>games of that test?" I'd bet that your theoretical human, who, let's say, is 700
>>>points weaker than the engine (just to pull that number out of the air), would
>>>lose almost all of those games.
>>>Finally, I'm not sure why you are all of a sudden talking about Chessmaster not
>>>entering a world championships. Admittedly, I did bring up my very brief tests
>>>with Chessmaster on ICC that took place well over two years ago, just to provide
>>>some evidence that a strong program without a book can still perform decently
>>>against other strong engines, even occasionally beating them. But as for the
>>>reason that Chessmaster does not enter the WC, you should ask Johan what it is,
>>>because it has always been his decision.
>>>I haven't been involved in Chessmaster in more than two years, so I can't
>>>comment on the current situation. I wouldn't even venture to guess as to what it
>>>might be -- but I'm sure you know his e-mail address, so why don't you just ask
>>>him, instead of bringing up something that has nothing to do with this topic?
>>One more point. Even Arturo has been referring to this "well-tuned book" being
>>specifically prepared for a single opponent. And this is all well and good, and
>>of course preparation for your opponent is vital. However, could this one book
>>be used equally successfully against ALL opponents in a tournament. Clearly the
>>answer is no, and it might even be detrimental against other opponents.
>>So, once again, I think we may be talking about different things. You and Arturo
>>(and others) are talking about a book that is designed to be played against
>>another specific engine, and Uri and I (and others) are talking about one
>>"generically strong book" that is intended to be used against all opponents.
>Uri doesn't know what he talks about anyway of course. He still thinks 1.h3 is a
>good book to test ones engine with.
>I never saw him take that back.
>This discussion goes way over his head.
>My point is very simple.
>You say: "close to 0%".
>The point being made is that a program at todays hardware (and not some
>imaginary  hardware from the year 2100, nor a hardcoded tournament book in the
>executable like rebel had it) has a hard 0% chance to win the world champs.
>I specifically mean world champs as the strongest opponents show up there. Not
>just some amateurs.
>So i very clearly want the discussion here that it is a hard 0% and not 'close'
>to 0%. Close to 0% is also 10%.
>It is not 10%. It is not 5%. It is 0%. And not 0,001%. It just never has
>happened. And it never WILL happen. There is only 3 possible results in chess.
>You win a game, you draw a game, or you lose a game.
>So we cannot calculate with 0.00000001% if there never is going to be
>There have been last 9 years precisely 2 winners. Shredder or Junior.
>So chances 'near zero' is not a good definition at all.
>We want hard formulations. As you win a title or you don't win a title.
>It has 0% happened so far that an engine without book won that title.
>It has a 0% chance.
>A hard 0% chance.

There is no proof to hard 0% chance.

If the chances for movei with no book is only 0.001% you will probably
do not see it winning even after 1000 tournaments(because it means one win for
100,000 tournaments).


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