How many people actually use chessengine


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Smith Dhumbumroong    (2006-10-03)
How many people actually use chessengine

Just curious, how many people here uses chessengine when playing on FICGS? And what engine do you usally use?

Thibault de Vassal    (2006-10-03 14:40:57)
About 50% IMO

Just a personal estimation, according the number of moves played & time.

I would say about 50% ...

Roger Weber    (2006-10-03 15:06:37)
50% ?!

Are you serious?

I mean, it is just bad to use chess engines.
1) You don't improve your own skill level
2) If I want to play against a chessengine I can just install one instead of trying to play people over the internet

Smith Dhumbumroong    (2006-10-03 15:16:08)
50% ?

Hm... That's quite alot. Like Roger said, I also don't quite understand why most people use chess engine. I mean, what's the point in winning then?

Thibault de Vassal    (2006-10-03 15:19:04)
Humans vs. centaurs

This kind of discussion happened already here :

People obviously play chess here for many different reasons, and there are very different ways to improve... I think that using a chess engine or not is not so important, centaurs will play with centaurs & humans against humans. The fact is chess engines are allowed here, and we can suppose that most players under elo 1700 don't use engines and most players over elo 1700 use engines.

Thibault de Vassal    (2006-10-03 15:28:14)

The point is not always winning for sure... playing good chess or learning are others.

Some very strong players just like to try & analyse unusual openings ie.

Smith Dhumbumroong    (2006-10-03 15:55:17)

Thanks for information, Thibault. I've never play in an association that explicitly allows computer assitance before, so I'm curious what is the reason most people use it, which is very interesting after reading the thread in Thibault's post. In the end I just have to agree with you, Thibault, centaurs will play with centaurs & humans against humans, and who cares if you're playing against a centaur if it is a good game, right? :)

James Stripes    (2006-10-03 16:06:53)
Engines appeal

I've played on several other correspondence sites, and this is the only one that permits engine use. For me, that was a critical part of its appeal. I started playing here to see how adding engine analysis to my other research methods will affect the play. I still think that positional understanding will be the critical difference in most games, as it is where engines are not permitted.

Elmer Valderrama    (2006-10-04 22:31:46)
engine use

I believe a player should be stronger than an engine (in terms of positional understanding) to get a feeling of where the centre of gravity (of the analysis) should go to have a "win".

If left alone/by themselves, the engines would make very stupid things, that's why they are in severe need to be told what opening to choose, eventually what line, and in the line, what series of moves -so called "plan". The difference in strength -given that engines are now public/free and very strong- lies in the difference in playing skill between players, if not in the computer power owned by them, in my opinion.

Marc Lacrosse    (2006-10-04 22:50:34)
How many people actually use chessengine

I do, and I cannot even understand why some feel it is not fair : it is explicitly allowed here.
My feeling is that most (if not all) my opponents do use them also.
And this is perfectly OK for me. For several reasons :

1. I prefer not to have worked hard on a game and then win it because a sudden tactical error leads to a premature end after months of intense struggle.

2. I am far from being able on my own forces to have such interesting games as those that I play with help of engines.

3. Being on almost the same basis of computer help as my opponents, I feel that the human touch is clearly decisive in these computer-assisted correspondence games : it's precisely there that the difference can be made.


Rodrigo Jaroszewski    (2006-10-05 11:42:35)

Basically, I'm playing to force myself to learn. In July, when I began my first game in FICGS, I knew nothing and had nobody to teach me. Since the probabilities of me ever having a tutor are dim, I knew I had to learn alone.

FICS won't cut it, because the guys at my level generally memorize a line and go for it until the bitter end. Having no opening knowledge I would generally end up in a bad spot until the midgame, where I can handle myself better. I rarely got past move 15 there.

OTB won't do for me, because I don't even know if there's a chess club in my city. I had a neighbor that used to play with me, but I quickly got past him on knowledge.

Studying database games is just not my style. I can't get drawn into the game if I'm not playing. If I choose the bad move I have to feel threatened by it, it has to have a consequence to me.

Thus, I'm here at FICGS. Before every move I'm able to analyze it and how the line goes forward, to understand why it is a good move. Plus, I'm able to test the moves that come to my head and check them (generally to find out they are outright suicidal).

In the end, I think my opponent wins something back, which is an entertaining and hopefully instructive game.

P.S.: BTW, just so you know, I play clean on FICS and OTB. I think those are, after some time at FICGS, becoming instructive environments on their own right.

Yannick Maret    (2006-10-06 10:56:18)
I am new here

but I would think that for non-master it makes sense to use chess engine only to check that the chosen move doesn't give a tactical opportunity to the opponent... Anyway, I play without the help of chess-engine since I think chess-engine would take away fun from chess. But still, as Rodrigo said they could be an interesting learning tools!

Miguel Pires    (2006-10-06 11:53:01)
I use engines

For check my analisys, and to see if i misse something. But i don't trust 100% in the engines, in some positions like this one: 2r2rk1/1bq1bpp1/p2ppn1p/1p4BP/3NP1P1/3B1P2/PPPQ4/2KR3R w - - 0 17 i don't trust in the engines. Playing with the help of the engines help me to improve my OTB games. Regard's Miguel Pires

Ryan Benitez    (2006-10-08 22:50:43)
engine is just a tool

2r2rk1/1bq1bpp1/p2ppn1p/1p4BP/3NP1P1/3B1P2/PPPQ4/2KR3R w - - 0 17 The engine I use plays Bxh6 Anyway of course an engine should be used as a tool not to play the game. I will beat an unattended engine 80% of the time at the time controls played here.

Thibault de Vassal    (2006-10-12 18:56:37)
80 -> 50 -> 20

Actually, my estimation was probably right a few months ago, but not anymore... When the server started, the elo average was really strong, most players coming from well-known correspondence chess places (TCCMB, IECG...), but more and more beginners sign up, so the proportion of centaurs (human + engine) already is or will be nearer 20%, slowly but continuously decreasing (Google effect)...

Scott Prestwood    (2006-10-21 03:15:11)
Full Disclosure

Perhaps tournaments should be labled as permiting engines and not permiting engines. Coorespondence chess has tradionally had only the rules of chess and the time control limiting it. And the early masters that used and believed in coorespondence chess as a method to improve ones game did not have access to computers, nice to know I could get killed in the tourney I am in just because I'm playing 6 computers. The initial allowance of databases and books to aid ones choice of moves as well as playing the game through allowed improvement of ones chess abilities. Computers will have a greater tendency to be the one playing the game because they only prescribe one line of action from a position. That line is very strong and likewise tends to be the operators choice of the next move. If the allowance of computers is posted for the games it will allow for the players to chose which type of game they prefer.

Scott Prestwood    (2006-10-21 03:44:11)
Double Disclosure

I am confused as to why it double posts. what am I doing wrong?

[moderator : corrected]

Pekka I. Turakainen    (2006-10-26 18:04:25)
Reveal your software

Engines against engines....please, at least tell what chess engine you're using, so that your opponent knows which engine defeated his Shredder 10 vs. Shredder 10 1-0. Better advise: If you want to know which engine is strongest, please don't play here, visit some site that has ratings for chessengines.

Thibault de Vassal    (2006-10-26 18:33:58)
Reveal your software

Actually I wouldn't say that any engine vs. engine games are played here.
(or at ICCF, IECG ...)

This kind of statistics may be relevant on Playchess server or FICS [Free Internet Chess Server] at fast time controls where human can't help much, not in correspondence chess. That's obvious anyway that most players above 2000-2200 elo use chess engines, but games are not 100% engines, or any particular engine for sure...

I'm convinced Fritz or Shredder 'alone' wouldn't reach 2200.

Don Groves    (2006-10-28 06:03:01)
Chess engine as a tool...

An average tool in the hands of a master will always produce better results than the best tool in the hands of an average person.

John Acre    (2006-10-30 22:09:15)

I absolutely use an engine. The permitted use of engines is the only reason I'm at this site to begin with..... ........... ........... ........... ............. .............. ........... Engine assisted games can be a great study tool, if used correctly. I analyze each position to the best of my ability, record my candidate moves. Select one, record it, and then feed the position into Fritz to see how it evaluates the position......... ........... ............ ............. ........... ............. ............... ............. If my move is in the same ballpark, I make my selected move, I feel fricking great, and I await my opponent's reply. If my move is substantially inferior to Fritz's selection, I try to figure out why, and then I play Fritz's move. This way, not only do I get to understand the positions rising out of my chosen opening in a depth I could otherwise never approach without professional guidance, but each step of the way, I learn to play the next move's position as if the strongest move had been played............. ............ ........... ............. ............ ........... ........... .......... .......... If an opponent blunders in a big way, I mostly let Fritz finish him off, because the game is of no study value to me beyond that point. I don't care what my rating is, except that it be at a number where I can join a variety of rated tournaments (to face a variety of opposition). I don't play at this site to win, or to lose. I play here to get as close as a ~1600 OTB player like me can get to understanding the objective truth of the game............ ........... ........... ........... ........... ............. ............ ........ Sorry if that upsets anybody, but that's the whole reason I'm here. The community isn't big enough to have much independent value as a non-engine-assisted place to play correspondence matches. And why would one bother? There are a million of those places on the web. This place, however, is a one-of-a-kind goldmine. If engine play were to dry up or be outlawed here, what would be the point?....... ........... .......... ........ ........... ......... ........ ........... ............ .......... Anyway, to answer, from my viewpoint, another question asked in this thread, I'm currently self-rated at 1500 for this site. I'm playing in tournaments at about that level, and am admittedly using Fritz 9. My record, out of 20 or so games, looks like it's going to be about 4 wins, 6 losses, and 10 draws......... ............ ........... ............ ............ ............ ........... ............. ...... Only two of those wins are going to be miniatures, and both of those against the same guy. So playing with engine-assisted strength of around 2500 on my slow-ish machine, I'm going to score around 45%, with about 17 out of 18 opponents playing at or above my machine-enhanced strength............... ........... ............. ............ ........ ............ ........... People guessing 50% of users here use engines are lowballing, bigtime. I estimate around 95%. And I have no problem saying that I'm one of them.