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71 votes

How has chess managed to remain a competitive sport despite engine dominance?

For the same reason the Tour de France is still a thing even if you could perform much better on a motorbike. Most chess enthusiasts didn't stop playing chess after noticing there's some other person ...
David's user avatar
  • 16.3k
66 votes
Accepted

Is Stockfish 11 (level 20) beatable?

The answer is that they either played it on some very handicapped mode, they took back A LOT of moves, or they are probably lying. Stockfish 11 is currently rated about 3607, and that is in standard ...
PhishMaster's user avatar
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48 votes
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Why does Stockfish undervalue pawns when compared to the classical "a piece is worth three pawns" approach?

I am not an expert on stockfish source code, but my understanding is the following. Humans: It is true, that the 1 piece equals 3 pawns approach is pretty accurate, surprisingly so. However as you ...
user1583209's user avatar
  • 20.8k
43 votes

Is Stockfish 11 (level 20) beatable?

It's absolutely beatable, but not by an unassisted human. Anyone who claims to have done so is either lying or stacked the deck super heavily in their favor (e.g., by having Stockfish search only to ...
Allure's user avatar
  • 27.9k
42 votes
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What is the worst opening move in Chess960 for White?

This calls for some scripting, so here's my first hasty attempt at it ;) Here's a quick way you can do the search on your own in python, using stockfish 10 and only the python-chess package. All open-...
Ellie's user avatar
  • 12k
40 votes
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Why does the engine tell me to sacrifice a queen for bishop after a failed Scholar's mate?

It's basically a trade. After you take the bishop, if the opponent takes your queen with the knight, then your bishop is no longer blocked by the knight and you can take their queen too. The advantage ...
Ibrahim's user avatar
  • 524
38 votes
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Should a chess engine be aware of opposite-side castling?

I'm pretty sure Stockfish doesn't have explicit code that handles opposite-side castling. What it does have is: Some kind of "menace" score for enemy pawns advancing against our king. The ...
Allure's user avatar
  • 27.9k
37 votes

How is Alpha Zero "more human"?

Page 5 in the paper has your answer: ... AlphaZero compensates for the lower number of evaluations by using its deep neural network to costs much more selectively on the most promising variations - ...
SmallChess's user avatar
  • 22.6k
37 votes

Why don’t chess engines use Node.js?

Here is a link comparing C++ to Node.js from this question on Stack Overflow. To answer your question: C++, while more difficult to write, is way faster than basically anything else.
odinchess.com's user avatar
36 votes

Why does the engine tell me to sacrifice a queen for bishop after a failed Scholar's mate?

As @Ibrahim explains, you'll win the queen back, but after that White can even take the pawn on f7: [FEN ""] [StartPly "10"] 1. e4 e5 2. Qf3 c6 3. Bxc4 Nf6 4. d3 d6 5. Bg5 Bg4 6. ...
Glorfindel's user avatar
  • 24.9k
35 votes

Why don’t chess engines use Node.js?

Node.js isn't a language; it's a framework on top of JavaScript. It's also not fast, certainly not compared to compiled languages like C++ or Java. Nor is JavaScript easier to use than compiled ...
jwenting's user avatar
  • 451
32 votes
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What if both players always play the worst engine move?

You may find this game interesting: https://lichess.org/A9ZRnDcE. Here Stockfish (black) is programmed to select the move leading to the most negative eval position. White is a human who is aiming to ...
Mobeus Zoom's user avatar
  • 2,279
31 votes
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What prevents chess engines from being undetectable?

Engines have no concept of natural moves and they have no fear. An engine will play for the most advantage, not for the most manageable advantage, even if it allows a fierce attack, because it sees ...
B.Swan's user avatar
  • 3,488
31 votes
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Where can you play against AlphaZero?

As already explained by other answers, AlphaZero itself is not publicly available. The community has created Leela Chess Zero, a chess engine that started by using the same basic concepts as AlphaZero,...
KarelPeeters's user avatar
  • 1,014
30 votes
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Why does chess.com consider this promotion a blunder?

50 points sounds huge, but there actually is no meaningful difference between -6.4 and -62 in such an endgame.* 6.4 is more or less "Black has a queen for a bishop (but I haven't found a way to ...
Annatar's user avatar
  • 5,938
30 votes

Making my own chess engine for a college project

The number 1 goal is to make an engine that makes a legal move. The immediate next goal is to make an engine that calculates all legal moves - you can choose one at random. Next up is an evaluator - ...
MSalters's user avatar
  • 461
29 votes
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Why can a chess move improve the chance of winning, according to the computer?

If the computer was capable of evaluating every line of play right to the end of the game, the evaluation would never change. Indeed, the evaluation of every move would be either "win", "lose" or "...
David Richerby's user avatar
28 votes
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Why have engines not increased top rated chess players' Elo?

I think they certainly have increased their ELO, but more importantly, their overall chess strength. ELO is only a rating relative to others in the pool so it may tend to go up more slowly if everyone ...
PhishMaster's user avatar
  • 32.6k
28 votes

How has chess managed to remain a competitive sport despite engine dominance?

An analogy often used here is to compare people to cars. Sure, cars can travel far faster than people like Usain Bolt, but that doesn't mean it's not entertaining to watch. When people watch players ...
Inertial Ignorance's user avatar
27 votes

Why does Lichess only tell me my "inaccuracies", "mistakes", and "blunders", and not e.g. my "brilliancies"?

It's really hard to tell what a brilliancy is. For example, you might try to say that a brilliancy is a move that's much better than any other move on the board. Well, if you offer me a queen ...
David Richerby's user avatar
27 votes

Bad Stockfish evaluation

Stockfish isn't a perfect chess-playing entity, and you've found a position where it's unable to tell is a draw (at least until the 50 move rule kicks in and helps it prune). These positions are ...
Allure's user avatar
  • 27.9k
27 votes

How difficult is it to win a winning endgame against an engine?

An interesting question! I set up the position, gave myself 10 minutes of time and tried playing against the most difficult engine on lichess. I failed to win even though I used one takeback as well. ...
nyymi's user avatar
  • 968
27 votes

Why don’t chess engines use Node.js?

To add onto the comments: Node.js and Python are higher-level languages/frameworks, used as "glue languages" for machine learning frameworks that just serve as human-friendly wrappers to ...
qwr's user avatar
  • 3,902
27 votes

Why don't chess engines take into account the time left by each player?

Why don't chess engines take into account the time left by each player? For the simple reason that there is no way of knowing how to do that. A few years ago a clubmate rated about 1800 playing in ...
Brian Towers's user avatar
  • 98.6k
26 votes

Creating chess engine, machine learning vs. traditional engine?

If you're trying to make the strongest engine possible, absolutely go for NN engines. Traditional engines are great - Stockfish is arguably still the strongest engine on the planet on consensus equal ...
Allure's user avatar
  • 27.9k
26 votes

Is there an engine that finds the best "practical" move?

You're describing something that's very similar to contempt. The idea with contempt is that if you keep more dynamism in the position, a weaker opponent is more likely to make mistakes that you can ...
Allure's user avatar
  • 27.9k
26 votes
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Why does a chess engine not get excited about a piece exchange at the end of its analysis depth?

Chess engines will always try to extend the search by a few moves, so a position is only evaluated if it is considered "quiet". This is called Quiescence Search, and the problem you describe ...
RemcoGerlich's user avatar
  • 28.2k
25 votes
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How computers have changed the way humans play chess

Computers allowed the creation of endgame tables, which allow the user to know with 100% certainty if a position can be won, and how to do it. Currently all positions containing 7 or fewer pieces are ...
Tony Ennis's user avatar
25 votes
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Hardware used in AlphaZero vs Stockfish match

That's why I wonder whether there have been any attempts made to provide comparable hardware to both. This is Google you're talking about! So the answer is obviously "No". From the original paper ...
Brian Towers's user avatar
  • 98.6k
25 votes

Would an ensemble of chess engines beat the best one?

The answer is "No". If you have a defined fixed set of resources - CPUs, memory, cache, etc. - and you allow one engine to have full use of them then that engine is going to be able to ...
Brian Towers's user avatar
  • 98.6k

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