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Human versus Machine
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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Posts: 24

PostPosted: Sun Oct 08, 2017 6:17 am    Post subject: Human versus Machine Reply with quote

Anyone interested in human-computer matches might check my new book:
https://www.amazon.com/dp/1549916785/ref=sr_1_25?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1507440936&sr=1-25&refinements=p_n_publication_date%3A1250226011 (paperback)

https://www.amazon.com/dp/B0768G8R2C/ref=sr_1_46?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1507441224&sr=1-46&refinements=p_n_publication_date%3A1250226011 (ebook)

also available on amazon.uk(search by author and title), amazon.de, etc.

Amply commented and diagrammed games.

Seems like the first book with extensive coverage of a large number of winning games against the top engines.

Kasparov, Carlsen and Nakamura still have not written one. Smile
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 3:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

One thing I wonder is why routine books like for example a book treating the Budapest Gambit in the most usual of ways, a book entitled
something like 'Tactics in the Budapest Gambit', or 'Winning Tactics in the Budapest Gambit', that actually just takes ready-made samples
out of some game database, filters the games, and then shows some very obvious tactical solutions, shallow at that, would get much more
attention than a book treating a completely new, original and unsurveyed subject, like the way a human can beat the top engines?

After all, the book about the Budapest(which, btw., might be altogether lost with perfect play) is extremely routine and unoriginal, one could change it
for any good database, while the other book treats topics that have not been treated before.

Why would anyone prefer the first book, any guess?

Has the modern world become so zombied into following routine and repetitiveness, that it would not like anything new?

In the past, people used to cherish new and unchartered waters, but not any more?

In the past, writers who offered something new were highly respected and sought after, but not now?
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Tue Oct 10, 2017 3:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Comparing 'The Secret of Chess' and 'Human versus Machine: How to beat Stockfish and Komodo',
I wrote the latter much quicker, the former took whole 4 months, but the interesting thing is
how notions presented in 'The Secret of Chess' are visible in the games showcased in 'Human versus Machine'.

For example, the games exhibit patterns and notions like:

- twice backward shelter pawn on f7
- pointed chains
- white and black KID structures
- fully closed sides of the board, etc., etc.

all of which could be found in 'The Secret of Chess'.

Of course, it is actually the other way round: the many thousands of games(over 50 000, to be clear)
I have played against engines and top engines and the knowledge I derived from them are reflected
in the knowledge presented on the pages of 'The Secret of Chess'.

That is how I verified that knowledge: by playing an infinite number of games against the very top,
and it seems to work.

If anyone would like to consider the games in 'Human versus Machine' as fake ones, well,
you simply don't have a point, looking at the specific positions, you will not find even a single one
that even distantly resembles any human or engine game you could find in any database.

There are simply no such games and positions, so who came up with the concept and system?
Also, checking evaluations, you will easily see the games are for real. Current Stockfish development version still does not understand most of them.

Again, why would beating Stockfish and Komodo be less interesting than reproducing a routine game from a public database?
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2017 6:12 am    Post subject: Part 2 Reply with quote

Part II of the book is out:

https://www.amazon.com/Human-Versus-Machine-Stockfish-Komodo-ebook/dp/B076T7BVX5/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1509083087&sr=1-1

(both paperbacks and ebooks included, just switch between versions)

Also available on other amazons, uk, de, etc.(search by author and title)

In this edition, games against Stockfish DD, Stockfish 5, 6 and Komodo 10 are represented.

7 or 8 different openings featured, basically boiling down to 4 main winning pawn structures:

- Stonewall Attack(Stonewall Defence): pawns on d4-e3-f4, d5-e6-f5 for black
- King's Indian Attack(King's Indian Defence): pawns on d3-e4-f5, d6-e5-f4 in the standard KID for black
- Central chain structure, arising out of the Queen's Pawn Game, Torre Attack(or out of the possible Slav for black): pawns on c3-d4-e5, c6-d5-e4 for black
- Central bind structure, arising out of the English Opening(Sicilian Defence for black): pawns on c4-d3-e4, c5-d6-e5 for black

It is not easy to beat the top engines, so take a look at the games and explanations.
Maybe, you will find that interesting.
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2017 6:14 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Page count has risen from 165 to 238, so I guess it has been a bit more difficult to overpower the engines, but that certainly will make the games of higher quality.
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Fernando
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Location: Santiago de Chile

PostPosted: Fri Oct 27, 2017 7:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I took a look to your first volume in Kindle, the demo, interesting stuff, demo finished before finishing of second game so I stayed frustrated after he played hxg.
I am considering to get the book....

Fern
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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Joined: 02 Aug 2017
Posts: 24

PostPosted: Sat Oct 28, 2017 1:52 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Fernando wrote:
I took a look to your first volume in Kindle, the demo, interesting stuff, demo finished before finishing of second game so I stayed frustrated after he played hxg.
I am considering to get the book....

Fern


yeah, Fern, all the interesting stuff is after hxg. Smile

saludos a Santiago de Chile desde Hiarcs Forum.
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Sat Oct 28, 2017 1:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Here just reposting a brief reply of mine to a disbelieving member from a chess forum
(so that people are aware in what way a human may get an advantage against the top engines in the 4 mentioned structures):

Forum member wrote:
It does not make much sense to play king's Indian defense as the computer is especially strong in sharp positions
Playing the stonewall as white is known to be bad as it almost guarantees black a way to trade off his light squared bishops leaving white permanantly crippled and as black it is supposed to be good only under certain circumstances, which you will not get very often.
It's incredibly difficult, if not impossible to get the c6, d5, e4 pawn structure as black in the opening if white doesn't play badly and even if you do get it, you get positions similar to the Caro-Kann and French, which are both well respected and it's hard to see any fantastic advantage you obtain in getting these structures.
The 'central bind structure' is playable as white, but doesn't give much advantage and with white playing properly, it's very difficult to get as black.
However, the computer does have difficulty in playing against the king's Indian attack-like setup you mentioned before (with e4, e6, d3, d5, nc3, d4) and I think that you can get an advantage against it. But an advantage is all and I fail to see how anyone besides another engine can convert it into a win against such powerful defenders.


The king's Indian Defence involving d6-e5-f4 pawns is a closed one and far from sharp, so that is precisely
the position a human would like to get.
KID=KIA with black, so if the KIA is good, the KID is good too. One tempo is not of such a critical significance
at the current level of top engines.
Concerning the Stonewall Attack, indeed, white has fully equal, draw, at most, if black plays Bf5 early on to trade
light square bishops, but, fortunately, even current Stockfish development still prefers e6 and Bb7/a6(not Komodo though).
c6-d5-e4 is not that hard to get, both Stockfish and Komodo like a line like 1. d4 d5 2.c4 c6 3. Nc3 Nf6 4. Nf3 g6!(this is the trick,
definitely strongest continuation) 5. e3 Bg4!(again, best) 6. h3(that is how top engines play) Bg4 7. Qf3(bishop pair lacking,
but the queen is very displaced here) e6, then Bd6/g7, and at some point e6-e5 break is pushed.
de5 is rarely good, so there are excellent chances black will push e5-e4 later on, getting the abovementioned structure.
Of course, as the game is closed, engines see nothing, black will get decisive advantage only 20 moves later after a lot
of regrouping.
On the contrary, the central bind is best possilbe disposition for white at all, as 1. c4 is definitely white's best possible move.
For example, 1. c4! e5 2. Nc3 Nf6 3. e4!(g3 first, followed by Bg2 is also possible), and white gets big advantage, not sure if
winning though.
With black, you can get that for example from the Sicilian, Nimzovich-Rossolimo variation(see the game I just posted), as top engines
still prefer 1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 g6 4. Nc3? Later black plays Bg7 and e5, and the bind is there. Very simple.
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Mon Oct 30, 2017 7:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I just want to bring back to life an intriguing thread on talkchess, involving a live chess game between me and Stockfish, played in late 2014:
http://www.talkchess.com/forum/viewtopic.php?topic_view=threads&p=598874&t=54487&sid=863741b0621363b365f8debe27a1a99c
This is just to show how much analytical effort has gone into developing the right strategies to overpower the top engines.
With each move consistently analysed for half an hour, and Stockfish using 16 threads, the amount of knowledge one gets from similar sessions is certainly tremendous.

And that is only one of maybe more than a thousand similar analytical threads on talkchess during the last 5 years.

Some might try to raise cheating allegations against me, but I am worth
what I am worth.
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Wed Nov 01, 2017 6:20 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I am so happy, I just read a review on this book on Rybka forum by MarshallArts:

The exhortation not to buy his books is very mean-spirited and basically unfounded. I can understand if someone does not like the playing conditions which these games were conducted under, but the criticism is going too far.

His books are quite good actually. I only skimmed through the Secret of Chess, but the newer human vs machine game books seem packed with good and crisp explanations that can help elevate a reader's play even against other human players. The games themselves are H vs M masterpieces, regardless of whatever handicaps were used by the author. A very high level understanding of chess transpires when looking at these well commented games. I was positively surprised by the quality of
these games and their annotations.


http://rybkaforum.net/cgi-bin/rybkaforum/topic_show.pl?tid=32312
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:36 am    Post subject: Mean reviewers Reply with quote

I simply don't know what to say.
Obviously, I have angered beyond repair some person with my posts about
the books I have published, so that he has resorted to the meanest action possible, posting a 1-star review on Amazon, not once, but twice, for both part of 'Human versus Machine', without even having read the book:

https://www.amazon.com/Human-Versus-Machine-Stockfish-Komodo/dp/1973149176/ref=sr_1_5?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1511087220&sr=1-5&keywords=lyudmil+tsvetkov

https://www.amazon.com/Human-Versus-Machine-Stockfish-Komodo/dp/1549916785/ref=pd_sbs_14_1?_encoding=UTF8&psc=1&refRID=R7F932Q4FB0RCGK15NE9

It is the very same person, Serverless, who probably has accounts on all main computer chess forums.

Why are people so mean?

I have put an awful lot of effort into writing these books and get almost nothing in return, and still people resort to unimaginable dirty tricks to
deprive me of even the slightest consolation to see my books if not assessed, than at least not denigrated.

What a pity.
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Sun Nov 19, 2017 10:38 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

And, of course, nothing about the review is true, that is what hurts most.
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kosterix
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Joined: 07 Aug 2017
Posts: 59

PostPosted: Wed Nov 22, 2017 2:03 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

@Lyudmil, I understand your feelings, but many chess players have very bad personality traits. I don't know if there is any causality there.

What happened to you, happens also on other fronts, like on boardgamegeek, a site I frequent and often see 1-ratings without comments, or with comments stating something the reviewer did not like on political or other irrelevant aspect.

There is not much anyone can do about it, they are excesses and over time a more balanced view will take hold. Amazon does have buttons like helpful/not helpful/abuse, and viewers are not idiots. Have faith in regression to the mean, just ignore it and focus on the good things in life.

I regularly post reviews on amazon, simply to point out the goods and the bads and to note points that seller-reviewers fail to mention. In this respect I value social media highly, it's to inform. Based on actual experience and understanding of course.

Thanks for the work, by the way!

But the reviewer does have some points.

Say you play most evenings 2 times a game, that's about 400 games in a year (taking obligations elsewhere into account), to get to 50.000 would mean 125 years.

Also, I would write more from a reader's point of view, as in:

"If you like playing chess vs a computer, and are have problems currently beating komodo, look no further.
Based on x years of research and through method I have found a way for you to beat them."
Then put some statistics below that.
Follow by what the reader will get from reading the book.
Finally some points on how the reader will get most from this book, by virtue of its brilliant structure and so on.

I would also avoid offering a ebook version, ereaders are often very bad at showing diagrams and a study book requires flipping back and forth.

Selling unfortunately requires imagining a hesitant potential buyer...
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 5:54 am    Post subject: Part III Reply with quote

Part III is out: https://www.amazon.com/dp/B077PN5QT8/ref=sr_1_8?s=books&ie=UTF8&qid=1511501584&sr=1-8

This will be the last part of the series, for the time being.

I would not like that this turns into a boring book,
the purpose has never been to publish as many games as possible,
but just to demonstrate the possibility to win against the top engines,
and cover the most common winning options.

I can play more games in the future, so there might be 4th part, but this will be only in a couple of years, when much stronger engines appear.
It does not make sense to repeat one and the same stuff. When much stronger engines appear, and people say again, well, it might have been possible to beat the tops couple of years ago, that crazy guy Lyudmil used to do it, but not now anymore, then I will play some games to renew my
collection.

I would like to thank all those on this forum, who, by chance or willingly, have bought different of my books. Thanks a lot! You have helped me to at least keep part of my face and hope in what I am doing.

The third part features handicap wins. All the credit goes to Larry Kaufman(thanks, Larry, for all those Komodo handicap matches), as, whenever Komodo would play a match against some human, I would try my hand with
precisely the same imbalance against the tops.
It proved that handicap games are a great fun, one of the most interesting things in chess, and also are very helpful to your tactical training, for the reason that materially imbalanced positions increase the necessity for more calculations.

I would also like to thank the mods here for their patience and understanding.
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Lyudmil Tsvetkov
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PostPosted: Fri Nov 24, 2017 9:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

kosterix wrote:
@Lyudmil, I understand your feelings, but many chess players have very bad personality traits. I don't know if there is any causality there.

What happened to you, happens also on other fronts, like on boardgamegeek, a site I frequent and often see 1-ratings without comments, or with comments stating something the reviewer did not like on political or other irrelevant aspect.

There is not much anyone can do about it, they are excesses and over time a more balanced view will take hold. Amazon does have buttons like helpful/not helpful/abuse, and viewers are not idiots. Have faith in regression to the mean, just ignore it and focus on the good things in life.

I regularly post reviews on amazon, simply to point out the goods and the bads and to note points that seller-reviewers fail to mention. In this respect I value social media highly, it's to inform. Based on actual experience and understanding of course.

Thanks for the work, by the way!

But the reviewer does have some points.

Say you play most evenings 2 times a game, that's about 400 games in a year (taking obligations elsewhere into account), to get to 50.000 would mean 125 years.

Also, I would write more from a reader's point of view, as in:

"If you like playing chess vs a computer, and are have problems currently beating komodo, look no further.
Based on x years of research and through method I have found a way for you to beat them."
Then put some statistics below that.
Follow by what the reader will get from reading the book.
Finally some points on how the reader will get most from this book, by virtue of its brilliant structure and so on.

I would also avoid offering a ebook version, ereaders are often very bad at showing diagrams and a study book requires flipping back and forth.

Selling unfortunately requires imagining a hesitant potential buyer...


Hi Kosterix, many thanks for your kind words!
I also hope justice will prevail in the end. Smile

As pointed out, those are mostly short blitz games, almost never lasting more than 15 minutes total time, so you can play plenty of them, just crunch your numbers.
If both opponents have 5 minutes for the game, or I have 7 minutes and the engine 3, that makes 6 games per hour, 50 games in a 6-hour session.

If you are consistent, this will give you 15 000 games per year, so 50 000 games could be played in about 3 years or so.
Of course, you can not spend 6 hours daily, but I have been playing computer chess for the last 20 years..., so one hour daily would suffice.

To tell you the truth, I have analysed chess more than I have played games, especially during the last years.

Now, concerning the review, he posted 4! 1-star reviews for all my books in the matter of hours, without a verified purchase. Luckily, Amazon deleted his last review, I hope they will take other measures too.

No one gives such reviews for chess books on Amazon, maybe there are a couple or so, maybe even only 2. I mean reviews that are not based on fact.
All 1-star reviews I have seen have to deal with books that are completely unreadable on a kindle, wrong diagrams, wrong language symbols, Russian instead of English, fully blurred text, etc.
No one gives such reviews for the simple reason he hates the author, no one, this is maybe 1 in a million, what concerns chess books on Amazon.

He is talking of even spelling mistakes everywhere, when the Amazon software showed there are no such. He is talking about illegal positions everywhere, where there is not even a single one such...

I guess you see this is meant to destroy the book and its author...

You might be right about your other points, it is just that I am what I am, and I am doing what I can, though certainly there are lots of things to learn.

Thanks again for your feedback, I always appreciate sincere, non-biased opinions.
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