Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your engine

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georgerifkin
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Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your engine

Post by georgerifkin » Fri Jun 17, 2011 6:58 pm

Inspired by this thread: http://www.talkchess.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=39381
I would like to know what's the story behind the name of your chess engines.

Thanks :)

Dayffd
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Re: Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your en

Post by Dayffd » Fri Jun 17, 2011 7:03 pm

georgerifkin wrote:Inspired by this thread: http://www.talkchess.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=39381
I would like to know what's the story behind the name of your chess engines.

Thanks :)
Especially Dorky and Snail Chess. :)
David S.

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Onno Garms
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Re: Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your en

Post by Onno Garms » Fri Jun 17, 2011 7:21 pm

The origin of the name "Onno" is obvious I think.

But actually I had two candidate names, "Onno" and "Diden". I than found that "onno" permitted a symmetric logo but "diden" does not, so I chose "Onno".

The etymology of "Diden" is a bit unclear for me. He was a good monarch in my childhood play. His name was probably derived from his evil antagonist "Niden", the latter name possibly derived from Onedin (see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/The_Onedin_Line).

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Re: Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your en

Post by hgm » Fri Jun 17, 2011 8:08 pm

Spartacus was called that way because it also plays Spartan Chess.

The source-code file in which I wrote the first version of Micro-Max was first called minimax.c, but I figured that 'mini' was still an over-statement for it, so I switched to 'micro' . Later I discovered the name Minimax was already taken anyway.

Fairy-Max is a derivative of micro-Max adapted specifically to play fairy-chess, so the name was an obvious choice. Similarly MaxQi is an obvious contraction of Fairy-Max and XiangQi, and ShaMax a contraction of Shatranj and Fairy-Max.

HaQiKi D was called that way because it contains the Qi of XiangQi, and when that latter syllable is pronounced the Chinese way, and the rest the Dutch way (Hah-Tsee-Kee Day), it sounds like a famous Dutch exclamation uttered when something happens suddenly or unexpectedly.

Shokidoki is a contraction between Shogi and okidoki, chosen because it sounds (to a Dutchman, at least) like it could be Japanese.

N.E.G. 0.1d was written for no other purpose than to be the nemesis of Pos 1.19, (both are engines without search, which play by heuristic only), so it seemed fitting to give it an opposite name (the acronym stands for "Niet Erg Goed", which is Dutch for "Not Very Good").

mmcknight
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Re: Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your en

Post by mmcknight » Fri Jun 17, 2011 9:13 pm

I always considered myself a dork and back then I used to give files/projects that were temporary in nature a name with some form of the word "dork." For instance, I would not write "Hello, world" but rather "Hello, dork"

The funny part is that I believed a chess program to be a temporary project...

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marcelk
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Re: Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your en

Post by marcelk » Sat Jun 18, 2011 8:19 am

georgerifkin wrote:Inspired by this thread: http://www.talkchess.com/forum/viewtopic.php?t=39381
I would like to know what's the story behind the name of your chess engines.

Thanks :)
I think 'Rookie' is kind of obvious. It was a logical name when I picked it around 1993. It was a nameless program in the years before when I used nothing more than a sequence number that I incremented every time I made a modification. 1.s, 2.s, 3.s, etc... When I got close to 80.s I decided on the name and eventually Rookie 0.82 debuted in the DOCCC'93 (and got slaughtered). The King won that tournament, therefore I'm extremely pleased with last week's draw in the ICT11 and Johan getting curious about Rookie's king safety evaluation :-)

On ICS (the original Internet chess server, before the split in ICC and FICS) the name was taken at the time, so I had to find another handle. I like names with a double meaning, so I came up with blik(C). It is Dutch for both "tin can" and "glance, look", which seemed appropriate for a chess engine.

After a decade's break it was less logical to keep the name for the 3.x version, because that is a complete rewrite from scratch and it is hard to uphold that it is a newcomer.... I decided that it was essentially still the same design as version 1.0 (using incremental attack tables and dynamic piece/square tables), so I sticked with it anyway.

Speaking of Rookie 1.0, I recently recovered an early prototype ('rtest') from 1996. I found a binary uuencoded in an old mailbox and the engine's search+eval of that period as well. I have put them online at http://marcelk.net/rookie/nostalgia/v1/

I ran the binary in an Amiga emulator on my laptop, and surprisingly it worked... It needs just half a CPU to do a real-time emulation, which is amazing considering that the emulator I used was written for PowerPC and has to be emulated as well on my Intel Mac. To get the binary running I needed to find the 'ixemul' library for Amiga. This emulates a Unix kernel, needed for GCC-compiled programs. So effectively we're talking about 3 layers of emulation...

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Re: Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your en

Post by tmokonen » Sat Jun 18, 2011 9:14 am

Well, isn't that a neat slice of computer chess history?

What happened here?

http://marcelk.net/rookie/nostalgia/v0/ ... mes/schach

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JuLieN
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Re: Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your en

Post by JuLieN » Sat Jun 18, 2011 9:15 am

@Marcel

COOL, another Amiga nostalgic! :) You should publish your exe on Aminet!

I also have a MorphOS version of my engine... waiting for a UCI compatible interface to ever be published for the AmigaOSs...

As for this thread subject, Prédateur is named that way because when I started programming it I envisioned a wild and dangerous predator butchering us on the chessboard. Well... way to go! ^^
"The only good bug is a dead bug." (Don Dailey)
Image [Blog: http://tinyurl.com/predateur ] [Facebook: http://tinyurl.com/fbpredateur ] [MacEngines: http://tinyurl.com/macengines ]

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marcelk
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Re: Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your en

Post by marcelk » Sat Jun 18, 2011 9:28 am

tmokonen wrote:Well, isn't that a neat slice of computer chess history?

What happened here?

http://marcelk.net/rookie/nostalgia/v0/ ... mes/schach
I was a very poor student at the time, I had spent all my savings on a second-hand Amiga 2000 that I used for development. It was practically falling apart by the time I entered it for the tournament. On the first round the machine wouldn't boot. It turned out that the power supply had broken. I forfeited that round for that reason against Schach.

(Schach 3.0 was a veteran program at the time. I found it ridiculous that such an old program was still just at version 3. Oh irony...)

I don't know how I managed to get the system working that day. Everybody else in the world was using PC's of course, so a replacement was impossible to find. Somehow it booted and the tournament director forbid me to switch off the machine until the day was over.

I think in the evening I drove to my parents' house on the other side of the country to pick up their A500. It must have been quite a hectic night, because I also remember rewriting the complete evaluation that night as well (in assembly of course). Crazy days...

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Re: Programmers: what's the story behind the name of your en

Post by lkaufman » Sat Jun 18, 2011 2:37 pm

In our case it was an easy choice. I have for a long time used "Komodo" as a handle on various servers. It started with shogi, where the strongest piece (a promoted rook) is called a "dragon". So I used Komodo on shogi servers because the Komodo "dragon" is the only animal that bears the name "dragon". Then in chess there is the dragon sicilian, and we wanted a name that inspires fear/respect, so Komodo was obvious. I'm rather amazed that no one in either the shogi or chess communities had already used the name for a program. We already have a shogi program called Komodo as well, but it isn't very strong yet.

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