Nakamura vs. Komodo

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How will Komodo score in 4 handicap games with Nakamura?

Poll ended at Wed Jan 06, 2016 6:59 am

Half a point or zero.
0
No votes
one point.
0
No votes
1.5 points.
3
16%
two points.
3
16%
2.5 points.
6
32%
three points.
7
37%
3.5 or 4 points.
0
No votes
 
Total votes: 19

lkaufman
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Location: Maryland USA
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Re: Nakamura vs. Komodo

Post by lkaufman » Thu Jan 14, 2016 12:23 am

thekingman wrote:
lkaufman wrote:
thekingman wrote:Amazing and long awaited match, thanks so much for organizing this, Larry!

I, like many others, now find myself wondering "What next?" There are a few different possible directions to move from here. In general, I think Komodo has more or less conquered all the most interesting material handicaps, and these matches should move in a different direction. Here are a few of the possibilities as I see them, and a few thoughts on each:

1. A match entirely of f7 and move. Komodo has struggled to create chances in several of its recent handicap games at these odds, but has never lost and has won several. So I think it's fair to say Komodo has a reasonable handle on this handicap.

2. A larger material handicap, such as two pawns or knight for pawn. I am not a huge fan of these matches, as they do not much resemble real chess. The human simply needs to trade and not make any gross errors, and the endgame will be an easy win. Not to mention that many people do not recognize the magnitude of the difference between one pawn and two pawns, and would not be excited by this.

3. Initiative odds, such as the 4 moves given to Nakamura, or with black Kd5, 1..f6 2...Kf7, etc. These represent more dynamic handicaps, where the human, although starting at a big advantage, needs to accurately attack and cannot just simplify. It highlights both the attacking skills of the human and the defensive skills of Komodo, and any information gleaned in improving defense against strong attacks like this seems to be quite generally useful for Komodo. This is my favorite type of match played so far, and I would love to see more of it going forward.

4. Draw odds. A draw counts as a win for the human. A chance for Komodo to display and improve attacking skills against weaker opponents. A resourceful opponent may find ways to highlight any weaknesses (understanding/opening blocked positions, etc), which could again be generally useful for development. The games would greatly resemble normal chess, which would make it more enjoyable for spectators. Balance would be important, of course - I would start with giving the human the white pieces in every game, letting them consult any and all databases (including whatever opening ones they want, and endgame tablebases), and no opening book for the computer. I would LOVE to see this played, and I imagine many others would as well.

Edit: GM Kaufman surely needs no reminding of this, as he was involved, but Rybka won a match at draw odds 6-2 against GM Joel Benjamin in 2008 (http://chessok.com/?p=21973). Maybe with a stronger human opponent and database access it could still be balanced, but I suspect the human needs something more, like black forfeiting castling rights.

Actually I too would like to see such a match (draw odds plus White odds plus no (or just two or three move for variety) book for Komodo, and I like your idea of database access for the human as well. But forfeiting castling rights throws the humans' book advantage out the window, as Black will play strangely right from the start.
It certainly would make the computer play strangely, but it wouldn't throw the book advantage away. It would mean that the opening book is now just a lower bound on how advantageous a position is. If a line is good for white normally, it's guaranteed to be at least that good when black can't castle. Black playing strangely could also help with reducing the probability of the engine playing straight into a well known drawing line.

That said, I do understand the objection. I don't think removing castling rights is the ideal solution, but do think the human needs to be given something beyond the above ideas to make it competitive. Maybe he could be given takebacks. Say, up to 3 moves can be taken back after seeing Komodo's response, but a maximum of 1/move, and not after any further moves have been played. This, plus databases, plus no opening book, plus draw odds, plus the white pieces, just *might* be enough to make such a match competitive.
Without castling rights for Komodo, a database can't hurt, and would help weak players, but as a GM I can tell you that I wouldn't even bother to look at it, because it is likely that the best move I would find on my own would likely be better than the best move in the database based on wrong castliing status. The takeback idea is reasonable, and maybe no limit is need on how many given your other restrictions. But there are a couple practical problems. One is that retracting a move may restore the time on some GUIs and not on others; logically the player who takes back should not get time restored but the engine should, which is practically difficult to do. Another is that while this might be enough handicap for a 2800 level GM, it is probably not enough for the normal GMs we are likely to get as opponents. Other options are huge time odds with no ponder, or playing on one cpu, or on a cellphone. Or combine takebacks with the above.
Komodo rules!

whereagles
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Re: Nakamura vs. Komodo

Post by whereagles » Thu Jan 14, 2016 12:49 am

How many human losses so far were outright blunders? (giveaway of +1.5 or so) Takebacks make sense in those cases, though they do have some aura of anti-chivalrousity.

huh.. did I spell that right?

lkaufman
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Re: Nakamura vs. Komodo

Post by lkaufman » Thu Jan 14, 2016 2:52 am

whereagles wrote:How many human losses so far were outright blunders? (giveaway of +1.5 or so) Takebacks make sense in those cases, though they do have some aura of anti-chivalrousity.

huh.. did I spell that right?
I think very few GM mistakes in these matches were over 1.5 (excluding already bad positions), but several were around 1 and a LOT were over 0.5. The question should be how many mistakes were made that the GM recognized before making his next move. I have some idea of course but it would be largely a guess.
Komodo rules!

Jesse Gersenson
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Re: Nakamura vs. Komodo

Post by Jesse Gersenson » Sat Jan 16, 2016 10:20 am

Uri Blass wrote: [snip]I believe that 1800 players can beat top engines easily when the top engines play without a queen maybe except blitz.
[snip]
Uri is right. Queen odds is an easy win for an 1800 at 45 minutes. In 2m+0 an 1800 (me) loses 5-10% of the time getting queen odds and contempt set to 500.

I'm getting a 75mHz pentium notebook and will try to get Komodo to run on it. On an under-clocked PIII running at 183mHz, Komodo showed 33 Kn/s at depth 14 in the starting position.

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