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Old August 19th 07, 05:26 PM posted to
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First recorded activity by ChessBanter: Nov 2006
Posts: 364
Default Computer opening play and Chess256

When chess engines play against each other the opening problems are
already solved, more or less, while the opening books are that
comprehensive. The chess engines, typically, begin thinking only at
the beginning of the middlegame. On the other hand, it would be
monotonous to run without opening books.

An alternative, then, is to begin with any of the positions in the
Chess256 array. In this way the program is forced to grapple with
problems specific to the opening, which pertain to development,
initiative, and opening strategy.

In Chess256 the rules are the same as in Fide chess, and the piece
array is the same. The only difference is the pawn chain. The opening
setup for the pawns is chosen randomly while satisfying the condition
that the pawns must be either placed on the second or third rank.
There are 256 possible configurations. All of them are sound and
balanced, and fully playable. Black's setup mirrors white's.

While Black's setup mirrors white's, this should result in a proper
evaluation of strength. One is free to choose opening strategy, whether
to create an unbalanced or a balanced position, etc.

In my view, Chess256 could also solve the problem with computer vs.
human matches. It's an unfair competition while the computer has
recourse to a huge opening library. Thus, the program doesn't need to
know much about play in the first phase of the game. It would be a
more fair competition if Chess256 was employed in computer vs.
human matches. Neither human nor computer would know any theory.
But it would still be regular chess, and not Fischer Random, which is
much different.


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