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Math Supercomputing Games

Rybka Solves the King's Gambit Chess Opening 206

New submitter smarq2 writes "Chessbase reports that chess programmer IM Vasik Rajlich has solved the King's Gambit chess opening with technical means. 3000 processor cores, running for over four months, exhaustively analyzed all lines that follow after 1.e4 e5 2.f4 exf4 and came to some extraordinary conclusions." Update: 04/02 22:11 GMT by U L : Skuto points out that this is the same person who was found guilty of plagiarizing GNU Chess and Crafty.
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Rybka Solves the King's Gambit Chess Opening

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Monday April 02, 2012 @05:19PM (#39553533)

    Rybka was stripped of its world computer chess championship after it was found that the author plagiarized the chess engines fruit (free software, GPL, the current base of GNUchess) and crafty (opensource). Even so, chessbase keeps selling this stolen engine.

    Slashdot ought to be ashamed to give publicity to cheats and thieves.

  • by jfengel ( 409917 ) on Monday April 02, 2012 @05:42PM (#39553819) Homepage Journal

    Right on the surface, the King's Gambit doesn't look like a very good idea for white, throwing away a well-placed pawn on your second move. Apparently this was considered a good idea for a long time, though I (a mediocre-at-best player) don't see how it could work.

    As white, the only advice you need from this study is "Don't do it." As black, the advice appears to be "Take the pawn if offered. The best they can do at that point is a draw, and if they differ from that line at all, they lose."

    Assuming you're a great player, of course. I'm sure that I'd still get massacred if a real player were to play the King's Gambit against me.

  • April Fool? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by qeorqe ( 853039 ) on Tuesday April 03, 2012 @12:29AM (#39556701)

    This interview was the day after March 31.

    "On March 31 the author of the Rybka program, Vasik Rajlich, and his family moved from Warsaw, Poland to a new appartment in Budapest, Hungary. The next day, in spite of the bustle of moving boxes and setting up phone and Internet connections Vas, kindly agreed to the following interview, which had been planned some months ago."

  • by Anonymous Coward on Tuesday April 03, 2012 @12:51AM (#39556795)

    In shogi (Japanese chess), there was a recent development in kaku-gawari (Bishop Exchange) family of openings in which not only does Black gain the advantage, but does it by deliberately ceding a move to White!

    By electing not to advance a pawn into a key square, Black can instead deploy a variety of other pieces into that square, giving Black more strategic options in spite of the delay in piece development. This came as a shock to the shogi pros--kaku-gawari is one of the most popular, closely studied openings in the game (kind of like King's Gambit Declined in chess). In Japan's pro shogi league, Blacks won more than Whites for the first time ever in 2008 thanks to the invention of this opening.

    Shogi differs from chess in that most of the pieces have assymetrical movement--pawns, knights and lances can't go backwards at all, while gold and silver generals have limited means to move backwards. In chess, only pawns have that behavior. This may mean that it is harder for Black to force White into an early-game zugzwang in chess than in shogi. But it's still possible.

  • Why should I stop? (Score:3, Interesting)

    by cishuman ( 2020456 ) on Tuesday April 03, 2012 @06:44AM (#39558141)

    Yeah, computers are better at chess than humans. And cars are better at marathons than humans.

    If the development of automobiles did not take away the interest of running, what reason is there to assume that the development of chess programs will eventually take away the interest of chess playing?

  • by KWTm ( 808824 ) on Tuesday April 03, 2012 @09:34AM (#39559133) Journal

    I think we need to read the following paper which defends Rybka. I got the link from the Wikipedia entry on Rybka. [](It's a PDF file, in case you hadn't noticed the extension.)

    The paper proposes that, contrary to popular opinion, Rybka probably did not misappropriate parts of Fruit. It was enough for me to tend toward believing Rybka and not believing 34 panelists on ICGA, but I'll let you judge for yourself. If you know the background of the SCO vs Linux case, especially how the pundits made their pronouncements, you will appreciate this paper more. I can definitely say that I no longer unequivocally conclude that Rybka stole from Fruit.

"So why don't you make like a tree, and get outta here." -- Biff in "Back to the Future"