Computer Chess Club Archives




Subject: Re: About Fafis...

Author: Mridul Muralidharan

Date: 13:18:48 05/31/05

Go up one level in this thread

Now thta is really strange that you mentioned that movie - it jus played here
last week on tv !



On May 30, 2005 at 15:45:05, Vasik Rajlich wrote:

>On May 30, 2005 at 11:57:01, Mridul Muralidharan wrote:
>>On May 30, 2005 at 05:11:50, Vasik Rajlich wrote:
>>>On May 30, 2005 at 04:00:22, Mridul Muralidharan wrote:
>>>>On May 29, 2005 at 19:09:14, Vasik Rajlich wrote:
>>>>>On May 29, 2005 at 15:08:17, Mridul Muralidharan wrote:
>>>>>>On May 29, 2005 at 11:35:42, Vasik Rajlich wrote:
>>>>>>>On May 29, 2005 at 08:25:02, Mridul Muralidharan wrote:
>>>>>>>>On May 28, 2005 at 12:29:33, GŁnther Simon wrote:
>>>>>>>>>On May 28, 2005 at 12:20:00, Vladimir Elin wrote:
>>>>>>>>>>Hi Alex,
>>>>>>>>>>I think that reason for you to use only engines with open sources and delete
>>>>>>>>>>all engines were you can see words : alpha, beta, prunning and many many etc.
>>>>>>>>>Vladimir that is really a dumb post after all...
>>>>>>>>>>You idea that Patriot 2.0 is clone - full absurd.
>>>>>>>>Is it really such a dumb post ? I am not sure - whenever someone mentions
>>>>>>>>"clone" , I am skeptical - inspite of the number of clones that are discovered.
>>>>>>>>I prefer to give the author the benifit of doubt - a genourously large benifit
>>>>>>>>at that.
>>>>>>>>Nothing is opensource programs is a "secret" , I mean - even if they were not
>>>>>>>>opensource , the amateur (and definitely professional) authors will have arrived
>>>>>>>>(or already have) at them independently : by expiriments or through available
>>>>>>>>docs. I dont really see any ground breaking code or idea in any of the
>>>>>>>>opensource engines today - all are straight forward implementations of the
>>>>>>>>standard theory.
>>>>>>>>Most , if not all , clone accusations show as "proof" something really dumb -
>>>>>>>>like string search , result in a single position , behaviour of a parser (which
>>>>>>>>is _not_ part of the engine as such people !) , etc - maybe these are the only
>>>>>>>>possible ways to identify clones (I am not sure - and as I have posted before ,
>>>>>>>>I dont really care much) , but based on such flimsy grounds people should not
>>>>>>>>accuse others.
>>>>>>>>When you accuse a program as a clone - you are also maligning the reputation of
>>>>>>>>the author : which is the more serious thing IMHO.
>>>>>>>>What Vladimir Elin is hinting at is that (I think) , people (usually non-chess
>>>>>>>>engine programmers who know quiet little about the programming aspects) see
>>>>>>>>something/anything strange (in their eyes) and cry wolf.
>>>>>>>>Like a string search which returns strings - which might be what is defined in
>>>>>>>>the pgn spec , or a binary search which returns data match (whcih might be de to
>>>>>>>>a generated parser for pgn handling for book) , etc !
>>>>>>>>Ofcourse wachful people are always needs to see the hints which will lead to the
>>>>>>>>identification of many clones , but IMO we need a better way to decide how to
>>>>>>>>identify clones.
>>>>>>>>The current process seems to be : 1) Accuse 2) Flame 3) Author defends 4)
>>>>>>>>mudslinging 5) Nasty posts - brining the author's whole family history to the
>>>>>>>>ground 6) Challenge (to show source) 7) If 6 accepted , cleared , else branded
>>>>>>>>as clone.
>>>>>>>>  I dont know about others, but no I am never going to send my source code to
>>>>>>>>someone I dont personally trust - even if the rest of the computer chess
>>>>>>>>community might seem to.
>>>>>>>>Not everyone knows what the non-opensource guys are doing in their code : and
>>>>>>>>personally I do many a stupid things , but I might have something interesting
>>>>>>>>too :)
>>>>>>>>So why have opensource engines ? - different question anyway , we wont discuss
>>>>>>>>that since it is largely an authors decision.
>>>>>>>>We should try to promote the number of amateur engines so that as many people as
>>>>>>>>possible should enter this field - not discourage people. (both within
>>>>>>>>reasonable limits ofcourse)
>>>>>>>Mridul --
>>>>>>>First of all, your post makes me wonder if you are familiar with the Patriot 2.0
>>>>>>>situation, but anyway those things are boring for me so let's talk philosophy
>>>>>>>for a second :)
>>>>>>>I've had the good or maybe bad luck to spend at least 3 years living in five
>>>>>>>different countries, and I can make a certain observation. In two of these
>>>>>>>countries - USA and Germany - society essentially works. Wages are decent, crime
>>>>>>>is kept down, things just work. In three of these countries - Hungary, Czech
>>>>>>>Republic and Poland - no offense intended to anyone, but they just don't work as
>>>>>>>well. People steal from the government without getting punished, people cheat on
>>>>>>>their jobs, nobody is willing to deal with various problems, etc.
>>>>>>>What's the difference? A huge difference is that in Germany and USA, people
>>>>>>>essentially care. If they see something wrong, they report it and attempt to
>>>>>>>rectify it. This goes from cleaning up a small mess on the road, to calling the
>>>>>>>police if the neighbor is beating his family, etc. Throughout Eastern Europe,
>>>>>>>people are apathetic - and everybody suffers as a result.
>>>>>>>Sometimes, it can seem a bit too much. I remember I had this impression when I
>>>>>>>first came to the US - why is everybody so concerned with things that aren't
>>>>>>>their business. In the overall picture, though, society is better for it.
>>>>>>>So I certainly appreciate that there are people who are going to look into these
>>>>>>>things and do something about it, rather than just endlessly holding their
>>>>>>>tongue for fear of being out of line. Without it, computer chess will just be a
>>>>>>Hi Vas,
>>>>>>  Like I mentioned myself , we need people who will point out the
>>>>>>But these are just that suspicions - a 35% binary match of the executables (egtb
>>>>>>will account for that ;-) ) , a small set of common strings , a bug in the fen
>>>>>>parser (I have seen multiple people misread/misinterpret the same spec - there
>>>>>>will be grey areas even in the most well written specs) , etc are not enough by
>>>>>>a long shot to accuse something as a clone - they can be indicators of a
>>>>>>potential clone at best.
>>>>>>I visit CCC less and less nowadays - and each time I do so , a new program seems
>>>>>>to be accused of being a clone : personally I dont care , it is a hobby for me ,
>>>>>>something I use to fill my remaining freetime with when I am not busy with other
>>>>>>opensource projects I am involved with - but true , there are people who take it
>>>>>>seriously and for them and for the future (if not for other reasons) we should
>>>>>>try to keep this field as clean as possible.
>>>>>>But that should not be at the expense of any tom dick and harry coming out and
>>>>>>accusing programs of being a clone.
>>>>>>That is why I said - we should have a better process for clone issue : how clone
>>>>>>suspicions are raised , how they are probed into , how they are proved/disproved
>>>>>>, etc : a bunch of amateurish tests should not be the basis of flame wars here.
>>>>>>Makes the whole forum (and field for that matter) more and more unreadable and
>>>>>>  The analogy you raised is not really valid in this context (IMHO :) ).
>>>>>>I wrote a long response in this space on that - and then removed it.
>>>>>>That is not the matter we are discussing here :) - it will most probably only
>>>>>>expose my ignorance of the issues concerned since I have never physically been
>>>>>>to the places mentioned like you though I am made aware of the ground realities
>>>>>>through my friends.
>>>>>>Anyway , you are correct about the first point - my understanding (from what
>>>>>>little I read among the accusations and counteraccusations that kept flying
>>>>>>around) was that Patriot 2 was accused of being a clone , author did not expose
>>>>>>the source code , branded as a clone by the community here based on the
>>>>>>circumstantial evidence found (I read a few - maybe I missed a lot more) and the
>>>>>>ones I read looked not very solid to me (I have not done any research on Patriot
>>>>>>and never used it for that matter , so likely that I am missing the finer points
>>>>>>of the Patriot2 clone issue).
>>>>>>My main problem with these accusations is that :
>>>>>>1) People here follow the maxim guilty until proven innocent.
>>>>>>2) Sensationalism in the accusations - I see more and more of this in the media
>>>>>>where it is better to say something bad to get the max amount of publicity and
>>>>>>attention : same thing is being "imported" into CCC.
>>>>>>3) In general , it is the author's reputation which is more at stake than the
>>>>>>program as such , and mudslinging is affecting the author's reputation (the
>>>>>>accusations might or mightnot be correct).
>>>>>>Hence , even if something is disproved - the result is not going to remove the
>>>>>>damage already done to it !
>>>>>>"An arrow which leaves the bow and a word which leaves the mouth cannot be taken
>>>>>>back" - an old saying here :)
>>>>>>I believe in "Innocent until proven guilty" too much (it might be a
>>>>>>cultural/upbringing thing, not sure) , which is why these discussions disturb me
>>>>>>Very few people seem to stick up for the author in general - like Peter Skinner
>>>>>>seems to be doing right now (just skimmed through the posts now) , the more
>>>>>>vocal group are the ones who are accusing. The others seem to be maintaining a
>>>>>>studied silence - true , you should try not to react until you get all the facts
>>>>>>- mark of a wise man , but sometimes it galls me when the more vocal group makes
>>>>>>the community believe in an issue just because they keep repeating it and the
>>>>>>others dont challenge or respond until everyone believes it !
>>>>>>I have seen way too many "discussions" of this nature in other forums online and
>>>>>>now recently in CCC also.
>>>>>>Justice happens when both sides are looked at impartially : assuming people are
>>>>>>really interested in getting to the roots of the problem. (which most of us in
>>>>>>CCC here are I assume).
>>>>>>Note : even now I am not really saying whether the programs are clones or not ,
>>>>>>I dont have the data , unfortunately neither the time to investigate , or the
>>>>>>patience for it right now and really appreciate the work people are puttig in
>>>>>>this work.
>>>>>Hi Mridul --
>>>>>Ok there is no way I can write something intelligent at this hour :)
>>>>>There is a balance of course between persecuting too many innocents, and
>>>>>defending too many who are guilty.
>>>>>I guess I don't see this particular cause as very attractive.
>>>>>Here is some more stuff about it:
>>>>>But frankly - I don't really care. :)
>>>>Hi Vas,
>>>>  Thanks for the link - will look into it later today.
>>>>My understanding of the legal system (atleast over here) is that even if a
>>>>thousand guilty escape , one innocent should not be punished.
>>>>But you are correct - even I dont really care about clone issue (you publish the
>>>>source , you expect others to use it - else dont publish it !) , and as I said
>>>>before , if I ever do opensource any of my programs , I still wont care if
>>>>someone clones them :)
>>>>All this discussions is just to support the rest who do and the lend moral
>>>>support to the programmers in general :-D
>>>>In most of clone "discussions" here (I might have missed some) , I always
>>>>support the programmer even when the evidence seems a bit too overwhelming and
>>>>back off only when it becomes a certainity ... maybe it is just the romantic in
>>>>me :)
>>>>Even if initially through a clone , I would prefer more people getting into a
>>>>field - later on they might start off on their own and create something really
>>>>interesting (ideas I mean - I dont care much about implementation details) ,
>>>I tend to think like this myself but over time I've come to realize that if
>>>everybody was like this, there would be a lot of robbers and thieves floating
>>Well , not everyone thinks that way (unlike you and me :) ) - general people
>>usually are the first to brand someone as a criminal on the basis of flimsy
>>evidence : usually what gets fed to them through the media and based on
>>sensational/gruesome facts.
>>As an individual , everyone is free to form their own opinions (and he does not
>>need to justify/defend it to anyone).
>>But before we (as a community) declare that something is a clone , get it
>>removed from tourny's , brand the author as a clone-creater , etc (which could
>>be considered parallel to dishing out a verdict in court ?) we should try to be
>>more rigourous.
>>For me personally it is not important whether program X (whether written by me
>>or not) is branded as a clone : since I do think for kicks during free time ,
>>but not everyone will take this attitude : and I want to give those people
>>support who might not be very vocal or have a large support group - until
>>atleast it is conclusively proved.
>>>A lot of wrongdoing depends on the uncertainty of the audience - people may
>>>pretty much understand what is happening, but they can't "prove" it, while
>>>others are talking about "innocent until proven guilty" and in other ways
>>>rewarding doing nothing. In the meantime, the robbers are laughing all the way
>>>to the bank.
>>Very true - we have way too many incidents in nearly all countries about people
>>who have scammed , conned , robbed (some going into billions of dollars) and
>>still walk around free.
>>I heard that a murderer in highly publicized case in US also escaped this way
>>(vaguely remember hearing something like this).
>>But that does not remove the fundamental tennent of the justice system , which
>>is justice and the accused is held innocent until proven guilty.
>>In some case , this gets modified as proven guilty beyond reasonable doubt -
>>which is when a really unlucky innocent guy gets the sentence based on
>>circumstantial evidence. (I dont know how many actual cases have gone through
>>like this , but there are way too many movies here which highlight these
>>loopholes here :) )
>>Innocent until proven guilty does not mean that the robbers get to roam around
>>It means that the system will not brand someone as a criminal until the
>>investigation is over and all sides of the case/arguments are looked into - the
>>case is still in active scrutiny and until it is cleared , it will be ...
>>There just wont be a bias against the accused. (Example : society looking at a
>>chain killer with very hostile viewpoint , if public decide his case, he will
>>get lynched - but if justice is to be served , the court will hear his side ,
>>give him oppurtunatet to defend (most important !) and then decide impartially
>>on the basis of the facts presented - not on passion).
>The cases where this really becomes a tricky area is when it's pretty obvious to
>anybody with some common sense what has happened, but there is still the
>question of going through the correct process.
>For example - imagine that you are a cop trying to put Al Capone in jail.
>Everybody knows he should be there, but you haven't been able to formally
>collect the evidence. Now, you have a chance to illegally sieze the key
>evidence, in such a way that you'll still get it admitted. Do you do it?
>Actually, there was a really cool (and really old) movie about this sort of
>thing. The name was something like "The Star Chamber" or maybe "Red Star
>Chamber". A bunch of cops got sick of criminals wiggling out by legal loopholes
>and technicalities, so they made a secret group. They would meet, review a case,
>and if they voted unanimously that the guy was guilty, one of them would get the
>task to kill him. I think you can probably guess how the plot developed :)
>>>That's what happens when things start to fall apart.
>>>Of course this is all maybe a bit too dramatic for copying some computer chess
>>>code. BTW - do check out that link - it's pretty funny IMHO ...
>>Very true :)
>>I did look at the website and had a real good laugh :)
>>One important question I had though was - I would be scandalised with the nodes
>>to depth and branching factor :-)
>>PS : Feeling damn sleepy , so maybe the post is semi to full rambling and
>>totally incoherent - will rephrase/repost if that is the case tommorrow morning
>>Personally I get disturbed when I see accusations like this - I like to keep the
>>field clean if possible with as much cooperation between contributors : ah well
>>, I like to live in utopia :-D

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