Posts Tagged ‘Computer Chess’

The Fabulous 10s: World Team 10, The New Chess

January 13, 2010

The New Chess!

When young Grandmasters whip out crazy theory backed by millions of pre-game CPU cycles, this is the new chess, Ladies and Gentlemen.

[Event “World Team”]
[Site “Turkey”]
[Date “2010.01.12”]
[White “Vitiugov, Nikita” (Russia)]
[Black “Rodshtein, Maxim” (Israel)]
[Result “1-0”]

[ECO “D15”]

1. c4 c6 2. Nf3 d5 3. e3 Nf6 4. Nc3 a6 5. d4 b5 6. b3 Bg4 7. h3 Bxf3 8. Qxf3 e5!!?

The New Chess, Indeed

I believe Levon Aronian started to popularize this wild shot.  What follows is a sequence of bizarre and somewhat logical moves resulting in more computer-aided insanity.

9. dxe5 Bb4 10. Bd2 Bxc3 11. Bxc3 Ne4 12. Bb4 bxc4 13. Qg4

So far, so crazy modern theory.  Note that 13. bxc4 Nd7! (13…c5 14. Rd1!) 14. Rb1 Rb8 15. cxd5 cxd5 16. Qd1 Qh4 17. g3 Nxg3 18. fxg3 Qe4 19. Rh2 a5 is equal!

13… c5 14. f3 Nc6 15. fxe4 Nxb4 16. Qxg7 Rf8 17. exd5


17…Qh4+ My computer, admittedly running on fewer cycles than the players, prefers the absolutely craven material grab 17…Nc2+ 18. Kf2 Nxa1 19. Bxc4 Nc2 20. Qxh7 Na3 – talk about a laborious capture-and-slink-back! –  and here is a sample absurd continuation: 21. d6 Nxc4 22. bxc4 Rb8 23. Rf1 Qg5 24. Rb1 Rxb1 25. Qxb1 Rg8 26. Qb7 Qh4+ 27. Kg1 Kf8 28. Qc8+ Kg7 and black is happy since his King has somehow found safety.  Well, if my computer is much newer, its shorter ponder time might have accomplished the same cycles.  The players and I need to compare computer benchmarks.

18. Ke2 Qe4 19. Kf2 (19. bxc4?! Nc2 20. Qh6 Nd4+ 21. Ke1 Rb8)

19… Nc2 20. Qh6 Qg6 21. Qf4 Nxa1 22. Bxc4 Nc2 23. d6 Rg8 24. g4!

This is terrible for black.  White completely dominates.  I refer to the prior note on move 17 for a possible improvement.

24…Ra7 25. Rd1 Qg5 26. Qe4 Rg6 27. Ke2 h5

A nice win is to be had

28. Rd5?

Here White missed a vicious win.  28. d7+!! Rxd7 (28… Kd8 29. Bxf7 Rh6 30. e6 Nb4 (30… Qe7 31. Qc6 wins) 31. e7+ Qxe7 32. Qxe7+ wins) 29. Bxf7+ Rxf7 (29… Kxf7 30. Rxd7+ Ke8 31. Qb7 Qxe3+ 32. Kd1 and wins, an amazing variation and the one most likely missed by white!) 30. Qa8+ Ke7 31. Qd8+ Ke6 32. Qd6 mate)

28… Kd8? In mild time trouble, black has to try the tricky 28… Qh4! – the only correct response is  29. Qxc2!.  Note after 29. Rxc5?? Qe1+! black turns the tables and wins!

After 29. Qxc2!  Qxh3 30. Rxc5 white should take the point.

29. Qxc2 Now white wins without much trouble and even gets to finish it with a nice blow.

29…hxg4 30. e6 Qh6 31. e7+ Ke8 32. Qf5 Rd7 33. Qxf7+! Nice.  Mate in 8.

The rather cruel computer points out that 33. Rxc5 is Mate in 7!

At any rate, in the game, if black takes it is indeed mate: 33… Kxf7 34. Rf5+ Kg7 35. Rf7+ Kh8 36. e8=Q+ Rg8 37. Qe5+ Rg7 38. Rf8+ Kh7 39. Bd3+ Rg6 40. Qh8 mate.


A competitively important win for white – vive the New Chess!

Corus “B” Prediction

Here’s the round 1 pairings.

Round 1 – Saturday the 16th
Ni – E. l’Ami
E. Sutovsky – D. Reinderman
T. Nyback – L. Nisipeanu
A. Giri – P. Harikrishna
D. Howell – P. Negi
A. Muzychuk – V. Akobian
A. Naiditsch – W. So

Looking at this list of strong grandmasters, and noticing young GM Parmesan (Cheese) Negi, and other luminaries of the junior chess world, I predict the redoubtable Wesley So from the Philippines to have a monster result.  Not sure if he will win it ahead of tough cookie Nispy or Arkady (Mr Vienna) Naiditsch, but So has a great shot at winning the “B”.  So there!   Recent games from Wesley (Wesley is the name of a crazed serial killer in books by Andrew Vachss, but that doesn’t relate to the Corus prediction) have been most impressive.     Super young GM Giri is a force, but I think So having only half the letters brings double the chess to the table.  Look for Giri to do well and So to do even better.  Hopefully Naiditsch will lose in a Vienna causing him to CHANGE OPENINGS!   I don’t like it when a strong GM repeats a single, narrow variation ad nauseum.

For A Change in Perspective

First, a giant cactus.

It's tall

Second, a vessel sink schematic (you wouldn’t know this, but the material is Italian Travertine granite).


Thirdly, a new toy line.



The Fabulous 00s: Different Ways to Engage Tactically

May 14, 2009

This just in from Round 6 US Championship action.   A crazy struggle where it would appear pre-game computer cycles played a major role.
GM L. Christiansen – IM R. Robson  Slav Crazy (Computer-Oriented) Gambit Line

1. c4 e6 2. Nc3 d5 Different Way to Play #1: It’s quite possible now to play a tactical, attacking game (!) after 3. cxd5 as Kasparov showed many times.  The computer would play less of a role.

3. d4 c6 Different Way to Play #2: And here, Khalifman used to have good results with the soft, slow-motion gambit of 4. Nf3 Nf6 5. g3!? dxc4 6. Bg2.  Shabalov tried this line vs. Sevillano and lost in an earlier round of the ’09 Championship, but the opening was not to blame.  That line offers a rich mother-lode for human creativity.

4. e4 dxe4 5. Nxe4 Bb4+ 6. Bd2 Qxd4 7. Bxb4 Qxe4+ 8. Ne2 Na6 Both players are following a fairly narrow mainline in this insanely tactical, inhuman (thus computer-oriented) melee.

9. Bf8 Ne7 10. Bxg7 Nb4 11. Qd6 Nc2+ 12. Kd2 Nxa1 13. Bxh8 Qc2+ 14. Ke1 Qxc4 15. Nc3 Qb4 Cute, but computer ho-hum, black exploits the fork on c2 to move the queen to this active square.

16. Qd2 e5 Does anyone doubt that at least one of the players had this in the computer before the game? 

17. Qc1 Bg4! The best.  I doubt black has had to think on his own yet. Rybka 3.1 says this is equal.

Addendum May 16, 2009:  IM Fluffy reminded me to say this is good prep by Robson, the article is not a knock on Robson.

Computer Chess

Computer Chess

18. f3? In a not very illumating computer “finding”, Rybka 3.1 likes 18. h3 but at the same time believes black is OK after 18. h3. The mainline is a humorous, absurd, repetition draw: 18…Bh5 19. g4 Bg6 20. Qxa1 Qf4! 21. Ne2 Qb4+ 22. Nc3 Qf4! 23. Ne2 and drawn!   Note that 21…Qe4?! is met by 22. f3! Qxf3 23. Rg1 and white has an edge.

18…Bxf3! Not very difficult but pleasing.  White’s king loses protection.  

19. Bf6 19. gxf3 Qh4+ 20. Ke2 Ng6! 21. Qxa1 O-O-O gives black a big attack.  Queen and knight is a very dangerous attacking duo.

19…Nd5 20. Bxe5? A fatal second miscue.  20. gxf3 Nxf6 21. Qxa1 O-O-O with a black edge but not yet decisive was necessary.

20…Qe7! Now white’s king cannot get out of the danger zone and no more resistance is possible.  A depressing result of the battle of computers. Perhaps black’s computer had been going a lot longer on this variation.   Psychologically, the two deviations given at the start of the game would yield better chances versus a tactical junior than engaging in a full-on irrational position computer war.

21. gxf3 Qxe5+ 22. Kf2 Qd4+ 23. Kg3 Ne3 24. Bh3 Nac2 25. Nd1 f5 26. Nxe3 f4+ 27. Kf2 fxe3+ 28. Kg3 Qd6+ 29. f4 Qd3 30. Rd1 Qg6+ 31. Kf3 Qh5+
32. Bg4 Qxh2 33. Rd6 Qf2+ 34. Ke4 e2 35. Bxe2 Qxe2+ 36. Kf5 Ke7

Kind of a depressing game in general where the “gee, look at that moves” were prepared already.   To put it another way, not much work at the board for black to achieve a winning game versus a strong player. I’d rather have both players on their own devices in an original, not analyzed setting, to create something nice in this important tournament.

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