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Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Playing Chess With Garry Kasparov Part 5

Garry Kasparov
Kasparov has written a number of books on chess. In 2003, the first volume of his projected five volume work Garry Kasparov on My Great Predecessors was published. This volume, which deals with the world chess champions Wilhelm Steinitz, Emanuel Lasker, Jose Raul Capablanca and Alexander Alekhine, and some of their strong contemporaries, has received lavish praise from some reviewers (including Nigel Short), while attracting criticism from others for historical inaccuracies and analysis of games directly copied from unattributed sources. Despite this, the first volume won the British Chess Federation's Book of the Year award in 2003. Volume two, covering Max Euwe, Mikhail Botvinnik, Vassily Smyslov and Mikhail Tal appeared later in 2003. Volume three, covering Tigran Petrosian and Boris Spassky appeared in early 2004. In December 2004, Kasparov released volume four, which covers Samuel Reshevsky, Miguel Najdorf, and Bent Larsen, but focuses primarily on Bobby Fischer. The fifth volume which will focus mainly on Viktor Korchnoi and Anatoly Karpov is scheduled to appear on February 2006.

Chess against computers
In February 1996, IBM's chess computer Deep Blue defeated Kasparov in one game using normal time controls, in Deep Blue - Kasparov, 1996, Game 1. However, Kasparov infamously retorted that upon the next games he "would tore Deep Blue to pieces with no question." and proceeded to with 3 wins and 2 draws, soundly winning the match.

In May 1997, an updated version of Deep Blue defeated Kasparov in Deep Blue - Kasparov, 1997, Game 6, in a highly publicised six-game match. This was the first time a computer had ever defeated a world champion in match play. An award-winning documentary film was made about this famous matchup entitled Game Over: Kasparov and the Machine. Also, IBM keeps a web site of the event at It should be noted that several factors weighed against Kasparov in this match. He was denied access to Deep Blue's recent games, in contrast to the computer's team that could study hundreds of Kasparov's. The relatively fast time control, lack of rest days and other match rules also favored the machine.

After the loss, Kasparov said that he sometimes saw deep intelligence and creativity in the machine's moves. He suggested that humans may have helped the machine during the match. In a way, Kasparov's allegations were correct. The rules provided for the developers to modify the program between games, an opportunity they used to shore up weaknesses in the computer's play revealed during the course of the match. Kasparov demanded a rematch, but IBM declined and retired Deep Blue.

Kasparov has been credited with the invention of Advanced Chess in 1998, a new form of chess in which a human and a computer play together.

In November 2003, he engaged in a four game match against chess playing computer program X3D Fritz (which was said to have an estimated rating of 2807), using a virtual board, 3D glasses and a speech recognition system. After two draws and two wins respectively, the X3D Man-Machine match ended in draw. Kasparov received $175,000 for the result and took home the golden trophy. Kasparov continued to criticize the blunder in the second game that cost him a crucial point. He felt that he had outplayed the machine overall and played well. "I only made one mistake but unfortunately that one mistake lost the game."
text is available under the GNU Free Documentation License


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