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  1. 03 Apr '06 15:14
    Is it possible to win a game when one player has a rook and a king and the opponent still has a bishop and king left on the board?

    Assume best possible defence and a non-threatening position to for both players.

    Regards,
    Sjoerd
  2. 03 Apr '06 15:24
    Originally posted by ploerd
    Is it possible to win a game when one player has a rook and a king and the opponent still has a bishop and king left on the board?

    Assume best possible defence and a non-threatening position to for both players.

    Regards,
    Sjoerd
    Assuming Perfect play - I think its drawn, (because you could hold out for 50 moves, repetition, etc) However, the slightest of slipups will award the side with the rook victory....
  3. 03 Apr '06 15:30
    http://www.shredderchess.com/online.html

    Go to the above web site and you can access an endgame database with 6 pieces or less.

    As stated unless the guy with the B drops it, the game is a draw.
  4. Standard member Ragnorak
    For RHP addons...
    03 Apr '06 15:51
    Originally posted by masscat
    http://www.shredderchess.com/online.html

    Go to the above web site and you can access an endgame database with 6 pieces or less.

    As stated unless the guy with the B drops it, the game is a draw.
    That's against the TOS on this site.

    D
  5. 03 Apr '06 16:05
    Although endgame databases are against the TOS, it isn't really very clear (I think it should be edited):

    (b) You will not use chess engines, chess software, chess computers or consult any third party to assist you in any game. Chess books and databases can be consulted during play

    There probably is confusion between a player database and an endgame database.

    A player database is just a big database of previous played games by other players which is fine to consult during correspondance chess (previous threads have already gone into detail about this hence won't go into reasons here).

    An endgame database is a database where an exhaustive search of all possible winning moves have been found by computer with a small number of pieces. Main difference with this is that it is effectively like using an engine, hence rightly should be against the rules.

    I think the TOS should make this distinction clearer.
  6. Standard member Phlabibit
    Mystic Meg
    03 Apr '06 16:07
    Originally posted by Ragnorak
    That's against the TOS on this site.

    D
    This is true, and I will ask GateCrasher or David Tebb to explain it better.

    Russ should add this to the TOS, so it is understood by all members.

    P-
  7. 03 Apr '06 16:20
    I would hope that the database would not be consulted while actually playing the game, but it brings up the question: what's the difference between consulting the db and, say Fine's Basic Chess Endings, during the actual course of the game?

    In my opinion the db should NOT be allowed. If you use an endgame book at least you have to think on your own to apply the principles. The db will show you the correct moves in all variations.
  8. 03 Apr '06 16:25 / 1 edit
    Originally posted by masscat
    I would hope that the database would not be consulted while actually playing the game, but it brings up the question: what's the difference between consulting the db and, say Fine's Basic Chess Endings, during the actual course of the game?

    In my opinion the db should NOT be allowed. If you use an endgame book at least you have to think on your own to apply the principles. The db will show you the correct moves in all variations.
    It is true, endgame databases aren't allowed (as explained above), just needs to be clearer to everyone who uses the site.

    Use of endgame books should be fine (no pun intended) though, because you cannot consult a book to get every winning move in any given position (would be a very big book otherwise ).
  9. Standard member Gatecrasher
    Whale watching
    03 Apr '06 17:19
    Originally posted by Phlabibit
    This is true, and I will ask GateCrasher or David Tebb to explain it better.

    Russ should add this to the TOS, so it is understood by all members.

    P-
    We did post the following clarification awhile back:

    A clarification of Section 3(b) of the Terms of Service

    It is extremely unlikely that a database, no matter how large, would be consulted thoughout a game of reasonable length by both players. However, if a past game was substantially followed, and was orginally played by one or more computers/engines, it could be considered as evidence of engine use. The onus, therefore, is on each player to avoid relying on such games in their databases. The prior existence of engine games would not be considered a defence against engine use.

    A database, for the purposes of the Terms of Service, should consist of previously played games only. An endgame tablebase, i.e. Namilov, is not a database under this definition. Using an endgame tablebase to assist you in a game is cheating and a violation of section 3(b).

    - The Game Mod Team


    It would be great if Russ could add this to the TOS.

    As background, some of the discussion I had that led to the clarification. Other peoples questions are in italics. Where the person is not specified, it is DoctorScribbles asking:

    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    what's a tablebase?


    Tablebases are brute force (engine-generated) calculations of endgame positions. You get 3, 4, 5 and 6 piece endgame tablebases which cover every possible combination of pieces and positions The size of each tablebase grows exponentially as the number of pieces increase. A 7 piece tablebase is probably too big to be practical at the moment...

    By contrast, a database would consist of actual positions from actual games that have been previously played.

    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    it sounds like tablebases are still databases, which are allowed by the TOS, so far.


    I don't know what sounds you are listening to, but it doesn't sound anything like the sounds I made.

    Originally posted by zeeblebot
    You will not use chess engines, chess software, chess computers or consult any third party to assist you in any game. Chess books and databases can be consulted during play


    I can understand your confusion. But the applicable rule in this case is:

    "You will not use chess engines... to assist you in any game."

    and a tablebase is a subset of the above. Certainly in spirit.

    But this is a topic that requires some clarity. There was another thread in the "Chess Only" forum that posed a similar question. I will make sure that an official clarification is made very soon. I can, however, assure you in advance, that tablebases are not allowed.

    Originally posted by DoctorScribbles
    You are dodging the question.
    The question is not whether you will be caught and branded an engine user based on that one move.
    The question is whether it is within the rules of this site to make that move, given the conditions of the scenario.
    If it is, how is using tablebase moves different? Both are engine-generated optimal solutions to the position at hand.


    If you have remembered an engine-generated move for a specific position, then you have been assisted by your memory. You have not consulted an engine during play.

    This is quite clearly different from consulting a tablebase (read engine) during play.

    You are just saying that there is a difference. You are not saying what it is and why it should rule out tablebases while allowing other remembered engine generated moves, unless you are saying memorization is the substantial difference.

    Yes, memorization is the substantive difference. If you can remember a great move it belongs to you. So use it.

    But if that is the case, then databases of any sort should not be allowed, as one does not have their contents memorized and they are generated by an outside source (read engine, as in your post) which is consulted at gametime.

    Whether databases should be allowed is open to debate, and it has been debated ad nauseum. Suffice to say they are allowed, and we have to live with that fact.

    Why do you say they are generated by an engine? They are not. Most databases are based on games that have been played in the past between strong human players. They are the primary source of chess theory.

    In recent times we have seen more and more engine-vs-engine games added to chess databases which is very unfortunate, because it give rise to the very type of question you are asking, and makes it more difficult to destinguish between database and engine, theory and calculation. Fortunately, databases do not exist that can be of use throughout a game. Exceptions can occur when two players are applying exactly the same game, move for move, but such instances are rare.

    In your explanation, you have either consulted an engine in both cases or neither. You cannot have it both ways. In the first, the engine-generated move is stored in your memory; in the second, it is stored in an external memory. Referencing a memory of engine-generated moves is either consulting an engine or not consulting an engine.

    There is HUGE difference between remembering an engine move from a past game, and entering a position into chess engine during a game to find the best move.

    You are allowed to LEARN and gather knowledge, prior to playing a game. To the extent that any preparation before a game helps you during a game, all well and good.

    What if there were a human-generated tablebase? Would the use of that be permissible?

    If you did it yourself, sure. If someone else did it for you, it would be outside assistance.

    It would even be okay if it was published. It would form a part of chess theory, I guess. Of course, such a book might fill several large public libraries... and it might just get specifically banned anyway.

    I'm not interested in your assessment of whether the creation of such a thing is feasible. I want to know if its use would be legal here. If it would, what separates it from engine-generated tablebases?

    The use of an engine, which is not allowed.

    If it would not, what separates it from normal database use?

    A tablebase is not a database. A tablebase is a calculated brute force solution to a specific endgame position.

    A database consists of a collection of previously played games. If you find a perfect match for a position beyond the opening phase, and with more than a handful of pieces left on the board, you are really pushing back the boundaries of statistical improbability. And even if you do find a match, there is no guarantee that the game was played perfectly.

    In a tablebase, you are guaranteed to find your position and the perfect solution to it. You might just as well call the game off right there and then.

    I would also like to see a third category addressed. Suppose I have a database of games from engine vs. engine competitions in which those engines were allowed the use of tablebases. May I consult my database of those games once I have reached a point that I know both engines are using their tablebases?

    Okay, so you, a human, are playing a game of chess against another human, and you both follow a past engine vs engine database game, move-for-move, right the way through to a 3 to 6 piece endgame where the outcome is now completely known....

    Really? Why the would two people in their right minds do that? Why not just agree on the result upfront? Why even bother playing chess at all?

    If so, what makes this permissible? The fact that those moves reside in a game database?

    Yes. However, given that you are playing chess on a site where engine use is forbidden, you take a risk by doing this. Relying on engine vs engine games substantially beyond the opening phases could get you into trouble if your games are ever analyzed for engine use.

    And why would you want to rely on past engine-vs-engine games anyway?

    Play your own game. Learn. Enjoy. That's why we are all here.

    Originally posted by MIODude
    At the risk of sounding stupid - what exactly is an endgame table database? is that when you have a database and you install the keys so that they are all classified into certain types .. ie.. end game key, opening key, sacrifice key.. etc ?


    All about endgame tablebases:

    http://www.aarontay.per.sg/Winboard/egtb.html

    But the restriction on EGTB's does not apply directly to your question.

    From what I can gather the database you want to use is perfectly legal. However, because it contains engine-vs-engine games, you take a risk using it much beyond the established opining lines. Of course, the likelyhood that you could use it beyond the opening lines is extremely remote. But the onus is on you to avoid over-reliance on past engine-vs-engine games, not because they are illegal per se, but because they might adversely influence any future investigation into your games.

    When games are anlysed for engine use, established opening lines are ignored. It is during this phase that books and databases can help you most, including the database you describe.

    Beyond that point you should be on your own, and playing your own game.
  10. 03 Apr '06 20:00 / 1 edit
    Thread 23141 deals with the same issue (of being able to checkmate with a K+R vs K+B), so that may be interesting to read as well.
  11. 04 Apr '06 18:09
    According to Oxford Chess Companion, rook versus bishop, black (with the bishop)may draw if his king gets to either of the two corner squares that his bishop does not control, but loses if he is driven to the other corner squares .
  12. Standard member Wulebgr
    Angler
    10 Mar '07 01:14
    Originally posted by Gatecrasher
    A database, for the purposes of the Terms of Service, should consist of previously played games only. An endgame tablebase, i.e. Namilov, is not a database under this definition. Using an endgame tablebase to assist you in a game is cheating and a violation of section 3(b).

    - The Game Mod Team


    It would be great if Russ could add this to the TOS ...[text shortened]... atabase would consist of actual positions from actual games that have been previously played.
    [/b]
    Am I to conclude, thus, that a database containing annotated games is not allowed if engines were used in creating the annotations? If so, doesn't this also exclude all books written by titled players that use engines to check their analysis (such as Kasparov) or to create it in the first place (such as Schiller)?
  13. 10 Mar '07 01:45
    Originally posted by Wulebgr
    or to create it in the first place (such as Schiller)?
    LOL, Priceless!!!!!!
  14. 10 Mar '07 06:09 / 1 edit
    The gist, as far as I can tell, is whether or not the database/tablebase is derived from actual past games, or the result of brute calculation (which would then render it indistinguishable from using something like Fritz or Chessmaster x000).

    Opening databases, by and large, have been established by a large volume of actual games.

    Ending game databases that are anywhere near comprehensive usually have to be generated using either outside assistance, most notably of the digital kind, or else a lot of man-hours mapping positions with the pieces involved, which usually more than one person examining a single endgame could muster by the time they actually have to move.

    It's probably best to reserve the use of these tablebases (like Shredder) for personal study during a time when you don't have any games which would immediately benefit from their use, or perhaps avoid them altogether.
  15. Standard member bosintang
    perpetualEditMonkey
    10 Mar '07 07:49
    Originally posted by Wulebgr
    Am I to conclude, thus, that a database containing annotated games is not allowed if engines were used in creating the annotations? If so, doesn't this also exclude all books written by titled players that use engines to check their analysis (such as Kasparov) or to create it in the first place (such as Schiller)?
    Any published theory is ok. The onus is on you if you're investigated to show that you were using published theory. However, even then, the chances are quite remote that *both* players will follow the exact moves, right? Either one player will deviate because they will lose otherwise, or you would agree to a draw!