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Messages - chilipepper

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General Discussion / Re: Should this Forum have an Off-Topic section?
« on: June 12, 2018, 05:10:59 pm »
Honestly, I don't care too much if I can talk about non-variant related topics here, precisely because of what you mentioned (there's other forums). But I feel without a section for off-topic discussions, this forum will be at a disadvantage. I'm pretty sure that this platform is free because of advertising. The ads are placed because of page views, and the page views happen because of user-generated content. The algorithms placing the ads don't care if we are talking about chess or funny pet stories.

At Cloudy Nights the pet topic is bigger than this entire chess-variant forum. I guess when there isn't much happening in celestial activity, pets keep doing funny things. But again, I'll let Asher and everyone else decide. :)

General Discussion / Re: Should this Forum have an Off-Topic section?
« on: June 11, 2018, 02:11:27 pm »
Then we can talk about things that aren't related to chess variants. :)

General Discussion / Re: Should this Forum have an Off-Topic section?
« on: June 10, 2018, 01:40:16 pm »
Re: Poll for voting if these forums have an off-topic section: It appears NO off topic section is winning (2 Yes, 5 No).

If there is a lull in activity on these forums, maybe we should allow off-topic. ???

I just checked another forum - the "Off topic" section at Cloudy Nights (astronomy) is the most popular thread there. It has 700,000 comments, which blasts away everything else. Even "gardening" has 10,000+ comments.

Evidently people who like astronomy also talk about other stuff too. :)

This is slightly old news, but to give an update on this topic, Martin0 has defended the title as World Champion of Bulldog Chess for the 4th time, in a game against Junebug444. The game was completed on April 22 of this year.

Also, the championship game of "Chess on an Infinite Plane" is still in-play. The game has been in progress for almost six months, and is currently at move 122 (as of yesterday). :o

General Discussion / Re: Will computers ever solve chess?
« on: April 23, 2018, 11:31:02 am »
To solve a game means learning which side will win if both sides play perfectly, or learning if both sides can force a draw. The solution should also define the strategy of doing so. If chess is solved and known to be a win for White (for example), then one who is in possession of the "solution" and plays from White, will always be able to win, regardless of the opponent. Strictly speaking, every game requires its own solution. If any rule or piece is altered, then the game may have a different solution.

Although chess is played on an 8x8 board (only 64 squares) solving the game would be a monumental task.

I believe the only thing that will be done with infinite chess and Trappist-1 is theoretical discussion if these games can even be solved, and what resources would be required (algorithms, time, and computer processing power). I'm sure no team or university will actually undertake the task, at least not in my lifetime. I'm usually not one to say something is impossible. Early astronomers once said that there will never be a way to determine the composition of stars. But today astronomers are doing that.

Solving any of these games may require things that we currently can't imagine at the moment. But maybe in the future there will be a way.:)

General Discussion / Re: Will computers ever solve chess?
« on: April 20, 2018, 10:08:24 pm »
Some other info:

In 1949 Claude Shannon concluded that a naive brute force analysys cannot be used to solve chess because there are too many possible games, and executing a brute force algorithm will take too long. But he did not rule out other methods (so I presume hybrid strategies where brute force is combined with other methods might be possible). His paper can be found here:

Regarding infinite chess, Dan Brumleve, Joel Hamkins, and Philipp Schlicht issued a paper "The mate-in-n problem of infinite chess is decidable". They arrived at this conclusion:

"...the problem does not appear to be decidable; and one cannot expect to search an infinitely branching game tree even to finite depth." However, despite the board being unbounded, solution strategies exist, "...the mate-in-n problem of infinite chess is computably decidable..."

The proof depends on the "first-order structure of chess" and piece definitions following "Presburger arithmetic". The paper can be found here:

(This does not necessarily mean that the game can actually be solved - the game's complexity may still exceed technological limitations).

One of the authors maintains a blog where some have asked for some points to be elaborated:

(1) There are versions of infinite chess that do and do not include pawn promotion. The proof to the "decidability of the mate-in-n decision problem" holds for both rule sets (with and without pawn promotion).

(2) Trappist-1 is a type of infinite chess where one of the chess pieces, the huygens, does not obey Presburger arithmetic. Primes cannot be defined using Presburger arithmetic, and therefore the decidability of infinite chess with the huygens is currently unknown: "The huygens piece, however, would break the argument, since the primes are not definable in Presburger arithmetic. So I am not sure whether the mate-in-n problem would still be decidable or not in that case."

Since it isn't even known whether Trappist-1 is decidable, I presume there's no prospect for the game to ever be solved. :(

...arbitrarily declaring a draw in a position that is a forced win is just badly interfering with the spirit of the game.
I don't believe that the rule that I proposed does that, nor does the example that I provided. However, since I'm uncertain if the rule has ambiguous interpretations for some undiscovered positions, it has not yet been added to the rule book.

Many of the problems you mention with duration are intrinsic to having an infinite board.
My intention with this thread is only to address perpetual check. But I'm sure there are other interesting and unique situations that merit special discussion. Other threads and more discussion are possible in the future. :)

General Discussion / Will computers ever solve chess?
« on: April 18, 2018, 10:34:01 am »
Part 1: "Will computers ever solve chess?"

For background, the thread for this question is very popular at, but unfortunately it's filled with a lot of speculation, guesswork, spam, and non-relevant commentary. Link here:

The question is also posed here, which is self-moderated, so the "answer" is more concise:

Expanding on this question:

Part 2: "Will computers ever solve infinite chess?" Here the chessboard is unbounded, and it should be assumed chess pieces move with a regular pattern (classical chess pieces, compounds of classical chess pieces, and simple-to-describe chess pieces such as guards and hawks). One example of an infinite chess game is here:

Part 3: "Will computers ever solve Trappist-1 (i.e. Infinite Chess with the Huygens)?" The huygens is a chess pieces which jumps prime numbers of squares. This may make solving the game more difficult because the complete set of prime numbers is unknown. The specific rules for Trappist-1 can be found here:

Any comments on Part-1, Part-2, and Part-3 are welcome. :)

Thanks Asher. :)

General Discussion / Re: Should this Forum have an Off-Topic section?
« on: April 18, 2018, 10:05:14 am »
Thanks Asher. :)

Does anyone know the status of our ability to post diagrams to this forum?

I know we can use external image hosting websites (post images externally, and link to images here). I find that to be somewhat cumbersome and inconvenient. Has it been settled that this is the permanent method for posting diagrams and illustrations here? ???

General Discussion / Re: Should this Forum have an Off-Topic section?
« on: April 17, 2018, 06:01:20 pm »
Also, a more general question (to anyone). Is chess considered off-topic?

If we would like to discuss chess (that is orthodox chess and not variant chess) at what forum category should we use? ???

General Discussion / Re: Should this Forum have an Off-Topic section?
« on: April 17, 2018, 05:58:05 pm »
It's amazing how, and how often, that works! It's actually a fairly easy game, certainly the easiest and closest to standard Western chess 4D variant I know of. Grin, if you're ever interested, I'll cheerfully play a game, even if not very well. I've never claimed to be any good at it. In fact, it's about the only 4D vriant I can play and understand what I'm doing and even what my opponent may be doing.
Thanks for the offer. I might like to play sometime but unfortunatelly I'm a little too busy right now to add any more games to my roster. But one question I have - if we did play, at which website would you suggest playing?

It seems that between non-malicious players no rule is needed at all; if one of the players can force a draw this way, and expresses his intention to do so by offering a draw, the other would sooner or later see there is no way avoiding the draw, and accept.
I agree. In such a situation either player can still offer a draw, and any reasonable player would agree once it is known there is no intention (or ability) to break out of the perpetual check. If it's a non-tournament game, then nobody else would care about the outcome anyway.

One of the few situations where not addressing this, and it could lead to a problem, would be as follows:

1. The game is in a tournament, and other players are waiting for the result, so the contest can proceed. Also consider the game has a long time-control, such as 3 days per move.

2. The checking player continues to play the pseudo-repeating pattern, occasionally offering a draw.

3. The checked player refuses to agree to a draw, continuing to move out of check.

4. The tournament decides the World Champion.

5. Both players are healthy and young, whereas other players in the tournament have shorter life-expectancies.

...This still would allow the possibility of abuse, by mentioning an impossibly large number, say a billion...
If such a rule can be developed where players are asked to name a theoretical number, and the moves can be predicted by player's intentions, wouldn't it just be easier to call the game result right away? (i.e. don't make a rule where players are required to communicate with each other and name theortical figures to call a draw. Just call the draw).

Making a rule that specifies an automatic draw will alter the game result for non-malicious players, in some cases. In general, I think that this is too high a price for dealing with malicious players.
I agree, and for this reason I don't plan to add anything to the rule book for now. But with time and special care I might be able to make a sensible and not too confusing rule to be added later.

General Discussion / Re: POLL: Off Topic Section?
« on: April 13, 2018, 10:06:30 pm »
Yes. :)

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