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shoshone
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January 15th, 2019 at 11:58:00 AM permalink
Great strides have been made in recent years in chess programs and their performance is enhanced by today's fast multi-core processors. Far outpacing the microprocessor-based chess boxes of a few years ago, today's programs running on a home machine can regularly beat grandmasters. I understand that world champion Magnus Carlsen doesn't like to play his home chess program because it consistently beats him.

Today there are over thirty chess programs available for home computers and many have ELO ratings exceeding 3000. A typical rating of a world tournament player is around 2700. There are even machine vs machine tournaments. Humans just aren't in their class anymore.

A good way to get into this game is to download Lucas Chess, a free program. It comes with 51 chess engines, some of which can be used as tutors. If you ask its advice, the tutor will suggest several moves together with a change in the positions' value. A positive change is good for white and a negative change is good for black. Sometimes there is no move that you can make that will increase value for your side and the best you can do is make the move that is least bad for you.

One of the characteristics of these programs is the use of forks, such as pawn forks and knight forks. That is when a piece attacks two of your pieces at the same time and you can save only one of them.

Using the tutor's advice and takebacks I have beaten some of these engines and there is one I can beat consistently. One that is far above me is a commercial program named Deep Fritz 13. It is diabolical and aggressive and the only way I can beat it is to take one or more of its men off the board when they become too much of a threat. If anyone would like to test his skill against this engine perhaps we can arrange an online tournament.
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teliot
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January 15th, 2019 at 12:21:18 PM permalink
Download droidfish for your smart phone. Download "Arena" for your desktop.

The only game in town these days as far as "chess machines" are Leela and Stockfish. Leela is a "deep learning" neural network that runs on GPUs and is based on AlphaZero. Stockfish is the best alpha/beta CPU engine by a long way. Both are so much better than the world champion (Magnus) that playing against them ceases to have credible meaning. Both are free and their code is public domain. The top commerical programs are Komodo and Houdini. The one you mention, Deep Fritz, is not nearly as good. A full list of chess programs, by rating, is here:

http://www.computerchess.org.uk/ccrl/4040/

As for "forks" -- that is a simple tactic. Alpha-beta engines tend to be better at tactics than NN-based engines. NN engines create long-term strategic advantages, but suck at endgames. Either will find simple forks/skewers/pins/etc. whenever they are more valuable than the alternatives.

I encourage you to watch the current computer chess tournament at TCEC and to visit lczero.org

https://tcec.chessdom.com/live.php

Nice to see a thread about computer chess. It has been one of my many obsessions for the last 25 years.
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AxelWolf
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January 15th, 2019 at 12:27:02 PM permalink
Quote: teliot

What's your rating?
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teliot
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January 15th, 2019 at 12:27:30 PM permalink
Quote: AxelWolf

What's your rating?

At its best it was 2138, current is 2114, but I haven't played a tournament game since 1999.

http://www.uschess.org/msa/MbrDtlMain.php?12424345
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odiousgambit
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January 15th, 2019 at 12:46:34 PM permalink
I was going to get back into some chess but was led astray by some wishy washy people who reneged on playing some Clue

to mention "forking" makes me think the OP is new to chess, so I would have to say if he finds a program he can beat, it must be intentionally gaffed a little lame. I don't mean to be insulting, as I am told programs that work on a smart phone now challenge top grandmasters. Of course many programs allow certain settings where less experienced players can win, while you can also pick a setting that only the most talented can compete in on the same game.

I'm afraid I can't brag about my ranking in spite of my user name.
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shoshone
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January 15th, 2019 at 12:52:51 PM permalink
Teliot:

I got the idea for writing this piece from visiting your web site and noticing that chess is one of your interests. We have corresponded in the past and you straightened me out on a point in math.

Stockfish (3300) is one of the engines available on Lucas Chess as well as Komodo (3240) and Houdini (3093). I can occasionally beat them with tutor advice and takebacks but these are not the latest versions. They generally charge for the latest versions and offer older versions for free. One remarkable thing about these engines is they can recognize a forced mate as many as 15 moves in advance. I wonder how many human players can do that!
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teliot
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January 15th, 2019 at 1:08:46 PM permalink
Quote: shoshone

Teliot:

I got the idea for writing this piece from visiting your web site and noticing that chess is one of your interests. We have corresponded in the past and you straightened me out on a point in math.

Stockfish (3300) is one of the engines available on Lucas Chess as well as Komodo (3240) and Houdini (3093). I can occasionally beat them with tutor advice and takebacks but these are not the latest versions. They generally charge for the latest versions and offer older versions for free. One remarkable thing about these engines is they can recognize a forced mate as many as 15 moves in advance. I wonder how many human players can do that!

Ah, okay. I am much better with numbers than people -- apologies for not recognizing you.

BTW, I've seen these bots announce mate in 70 (or more) moves. It's amazing stuff. Just watch a few games on TCEC ...
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lilredrooster
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January 15th, 2019 at 1:35:59 PM permalink
I'm thinking this thing can probably beat any human and maybe even pretty easily.
from the article:

"In early December, researchers at DeepMind, the artificial-intelligence company owned by Google’s parent corporation, Alphabet Inc., filed a dispatch from the frontiers of chess.

A year earlier, on Dec. 5, 2017, the team had stunned the chess world with its announcement of AlphaZero, a machine-learning algorithm that had mastered not only chess but shogi, or Japanese chess, and Go. The algorithm started with no knowledge of the games beyond their basic rules. It then played against itself millions of times and learned from its mistakes. In a matter of hours, the algorithm became the best player, human or computer, the world has ever seen.


Most unnerving was that AlphaZero seemed to express insight. It played like no computer ever has, intuitively and beautifully, with a romantic, attacking style. It played gambits and took risks. In some games it paralyzed Stockfish and toyed with it. While conducting its attack in Game 10, AlphaZero retreated its queen back into the corner of the board on its own side, far from Stockfish’s king, not normally where an attacking queen should be placed.

Yet this peculiar retreat was venomous: No matter how Stockfish replied, it was doomed. It was almost as if AlphaZero was waiting for Stockfish to realize, after billions of brutish calculations, how hopeless its position truly was, so that the beast could relax and expire peacefully, like a vanquished bull before a matador. Grandmasters had never seen anything like it. AlphaZero had the finesse of a virtuoso and the power of a machine. It was humankind’s first glimpse of an awesome new kind of intelligence."


https://www.nytimes.com/2018/12/26/science/chess-artificial-intelligence.html



note: I believe that Chess.com's bot which you can play for free, at level 10, the highest level, is equal to or close to being equal to a Grandmaster
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Face
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January 15th, 2019 at 1:46:00 PM permalink
Quote: lilredrooster

I'm thinking this thing can probably beat any human and maybe even pretty easily.
from the article:



Well that was disconcerting. Gratz to the author.
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shoshone
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January 15th, 2019 at 1:52:50 PM permalink
Quote: odiousgambit

Of course many programs allow certain settings where less experienced players can win, while you can also pick a setting that only the most talented can compete in on the same game.


I'm a lot better at fielding contempt than I used to be, so I'll refrain from making a pun on your handle.

You are right. In Lucas Chess you can set the engines to play their best move, next best move, and so on down to their worst move. Do that and even a good engine will advance a king's bishop's pawn and let you pull a fool's mate. Deep Fritz has three settings, Beginner, Hobby Player, and Club Player. I use the highest setting because I learn nothing from my opponent making foolish mistakes. If I feel threatened and take its queen off the board it starts displaying one of several "I resign" messages, but still will continue playing if I force it to move. Often it wins anyway. Anyone who thinks he's a good player should play Deep Fritz and get his head turned straight.
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odiousgambit
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January 15th, 2019 at 4:59:37 PM permalink
Quote: shoshone

I'm a lot better at fielding contempt than I used to be, so I'll refrain from making a pun on your handle.

It was hard for me to get a handle on where you are in your chess journey. Perhaps you could stomp my butt into the ground in a match, but it would earn you no laurels, especially in my current condition as a player. No contempt intended, I'm sorry to see our moderators have shown you the exit already.

Quote:

Often it wins anyway

I'm impressed it offers to resign, my experience with computer opponents [not just in chess] is that they have the Terminator [as in the movies] never die mentality without concept of giving up till death. Yes, most definitely can win anyway.

I think I will take on an old chess computer - I am so rusty it should be comical how badly I get beat at first. Maybe I'll post the games here and we can learn something.
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lilredrooster
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January 15th, 2019 at 5:06:16 PM permalink
Quote: odiousgambit

I think I will take on an old chess computer - I am so rusty it should be comical how badly I get beat at first. Maybe I'll post the games here and we can learn something.




the free chess bot you can play against at chess.com has levels 1 thru 10.
level 1 is very weak
as I said earlier I think level 10 is either equal to or close to a Grandmaster.
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cmlotito
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January 15th, 2019 at 7:42:23 PM permalink
I prefer to use an aluminum bat to beat chess machines. I find that the beating is more severe than using wood.
Gialmere
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January 15th, 2019 at 8:06:16 PM permalink
Quote: shoshone

If anyone would like to test his skill against this engine perhaps we can arrange an online tournament.


Heh. For a second there I was thinking of maybe getting back into it only to see the idea go up in a mushroom cloud. Anyway it would take me six months of solid play and study to be any good again. Maybe I should try the new deep thinking computers though. Back when I played, the machines were obsessed with material so you could often sucker them with a poison pawn or fork a computer's piece with an empty space that led to a "mates in x" situation.
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AcesAndEights
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January 16th, 2019 at 6:12:01 AM permalink
I showed an early interest in chess and my dad was a hobby player. We would play each other; funny now I don't really remember if I got better than him. I don't think so.

I played in a handful of recreational tournaments around age 10 or so, but wasn't really that good. I had no interest in studying openings (BORING) or reading transcripts of old games. I probably enjoyed the endgame the most, but didn't have the skill to really get there in a good position most of the time. Haven't played in years. I used to lose to the computer on the "Novice" setting back in the 90s (don't recall which program, something on Windows 3.1), so playing a current computer would be an exercise in futility.

My grandmother got me a really nice, hand-carved chess set for Christmas one year. It was a big honkin' wood thing, where the board folded in half and stored all the pieces. I would take it to tournaments and one time landed on the front page of the "Life" section of our local newspaper - not because I was any good, but because I had the coolest set for the photographer to take a picture of.

Not sure if I care to get back in to it. Probably should take a stab at it when my kids get old enough, it's a decent game for building logical skills etc. Maybe. I dunno. Maybe better games out there for that.
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SOOPOO
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January 16th, 2019 at 6:29:47 AM permalink
I was great as a kid; I think after my one tournament it was 1600 or thereabouts. I made it to the finals: I don't remember how many entrants... Age 9 I was regularly beating high school age kids. Then I had a match where I watched my opponent think for half an hour over one move, and realized the game at the higher levels wasn't for me. I still enjoyed reading every single book from my local public library, but the 2-3 hour matches were just too long......

One chess memory.... Around 20 years ago ex and I are taking a cruise from St. Petersburg to Moscow on a Russian cruise ship. There are only 11 Americans on the boat out of around 300 passengers. The movies are in Russian, the shows are in Russian, the menus are in Russian. Chess is language free, and I eventually found a Russian doctor who spoke a little English and we would play at night. We were pretty evenly matched. While playing we would have an audience of 30 or so kids watching. They knew I was an American, and throughout the games many of the kids would practice speaking English with me. I remember thinking how 'the same' these Russian kids are when compared to my kids, not how different....
lilredrooster
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January 16th, 2019 at 7:38:19 AM permalink
I went up thru the levels of chess.com
I beat it one time at level 7

couldn't touch the thing at level 8
it crushed me every time - usually very quickly
very humiliating - don't seem to be learning more
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billryan
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January 16th, 2019 at 8:14:31 AM permalink
Twenty years ago, I played against a Gary Kasporov(sp) computer chess game. I could regularly beat level 5 but rarely beat level 6.
I think it had seven or maybe eight levels. At that point, I was playing a lot. In the last two years, I have played one game, against a board member at a party. I imagine I'll have to give him a rematch soon.
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January 16th, 2019 at 8:52:14 AM permalink
I played a fair bit of chess as a kid, usually against my Atari 2600 chess cartridge. It was my goal to beat my father, which I eventually did. He said he would never play chess again after that. Then I lost interest for a long time. In the late 90's I went through another chess phase. I lived very close to UMBC, which I believe had the best chess team in the US, so that created a chess buzz in west Baltimore Country. I won an amateur tournament once.

My dilemma, is that I was born simply average at the game. Any skill I have it through brute hard work. It is very discouraging to know you'll never match savants in the game. If you weren't born gifted, you'll never be an elite player. I think that is the case with many games and sports.

Years ago we had a chess tournament here. I believe Odiosgambit won, in part by beating me.
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billryan
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January 16th, 2019 at 9:18:11 AM permalink
Quote: Wizard

I played a fair bit of chess as a kid, usually against my Atari 2600 chess cartridge. It was my goal to beat my father, which I eventually did. He said he would never play chess again after that. Then I lost interest for a long time. In the late 90's I went through another chess phase. I lived very close to UMBC, which I believe had the best chess team in the US, so that created a chess buzz in west Baltimore Country. I won an amateur tournament once.

My dilemma, is that I was born simply average at the game. Any skill I have it through brute hard work. It is very discouraging to know you'll never match savants in the game. If you weren't born gifted, you'll never be an elite player. I think that is the case with many games and sports.

Years ago we had a chess tournament here. I believe Odiosgambit won, in part by beating me.




That's a silly attitude. Should a piano player quit playing because he will never be world class. Should I enjoy a game of basketball less because there are thousands that can destroy me.
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He did not know care how well he sang, it just made him whole.

Doing what you love badly is still better than being bored doing something well.
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Hunterhill
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January 16th, 2019 at 9:24:15 AM permalink
Quote: Wizard

I played a fair bit of chess as a kid, usually against my Atari 2600 chess cartridge. It was my goal to beat my father, which I eventually did. He said he would never play chess again after that. Then I lost interest for a long time. In the late 90's I went through another chess phase. I lived very close to UMBC, which I believe had the best chess team in the US, so that created a chess buzz in west Baltimore Country. I won an amateur tournament once.

My dilemma, is that I was born simply average at the game. Any skill I have it through brute hard work. It is very discouraging to know you'll never match savants in the game. If you weren't born gifted, you'll never be an elite player. I think that is the case with many games and sports.

Years ago we had a chess tournament here. I believe Odiosgambit won, in part by beating me.


Its really sad that your father wouldn't play you again after you beat him.I went through the same thing when I finally beat my father in ping pong at around age 13.
I just don't understand that logic.
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odiousgambit
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January 17th, 2019 at 4:35:28 AM permalink
Quote: Wizard

Years ago we  had a chess tournament here.  I believe Odiosgambit won, in part by beating me.

Well, I certainly relished my 15 minutes of fame as the winner of the one chess match that was held here - but that was not me, believe me when I say I am not very good. I don't remember the real winner. 
Quote:

My dilemma, is that I was born simply average at the game.  Any skill I have it through brute hard work.  It is very discouraging to know you'll never match savants in the game.  If you weren't born gifted, you'll  never be an elite player.  I think that is the case with many games and sports.

Interesting comment. My problem in chess is very similar. One way it manifests itself is the way I clearly demonstrate my brain can't handle all the input; I will say to myself "I can't move the X, it protects Y, and Z protects A, B protects C etc, etc" Then I will make my blunder and say to myself " I knew I couldn't move the X, why did I?" Or it can simply be a failure to note the possibilities the enemy piece has, which afflicted me in the following game. 


I hope others will be posting games too. This is simply one of the greatest things about today, the notation can be loaded on a site and we can look at each others' games. I use https://www.chess.com/analysis-board-editor , you just copy and paste the below after clicking on "load PGN" and rock and roll. Mouse-over will reveal the icon to click to get one move at a time. 


I am showing this game in order to illustrate this problem of my being unable to handle all the input in chess. Now, I have not played in a long time, so I am playing the lowest possible skill setting on an old radio shack game. I also make the computer get 'out of book', it knows an enormous amount of opening book, and this means if it is allowed to use it, you will be the first to make a move not in book, no matter how well you know it. 


I'm Black. At this setting, the computer can make a mistake, and does in this game. It is never the same kind of blunder a human makes. I make the first mistake, a whopper, in move 13. It was a case of failing to notice the full reach of the foe's white bishop. I have that simple fault in my play, though I will say after playing a while it seldom happens. I have to *make myself* not dismiss the bishops' full power though! Incredibly embarrassing. 


Usually I resign after being down a pawn against the machine, at any setting. Since this was the lowest setting, I went on, encouraged by White's vulnerability and the controlled open column my rook had. Instinctively I knew White was really in trouble if I could maintain that, in fact I decided not to take a pawn so I could keep control. The computer's weakness [at this setting] is trying to keep the score in its favor for the near term. It also allows trading pieces, not sure why, but the resultant simplification of the game helps me enormously, I can play more by intuition. That guided me, I did not see mate until just before it happened, I was just playing by instinct. 


Comments welcome.


1. c4 e5 2. d4 exd4 3. Qxd4 Nc6 4. Qe3+ Qe7 5. Nf3 Qxe3 6. Bxe3 Nf6 7. Nc3 Bb4 8. O-O-O Bxc3 9. bxc3 O-O 10. Nd4 Nxd4 11. cxd4 d6 12. g3 Bd7 13. Bg2 Rfe8 14. Bxb7 Rab8 15. Bg2 Ng4 16. Kd2 Nxe3 17. fxe3 Rb2+ 18. Kd3 Ba4 19. Ra1 Reb8 20. h3 Bc2+ 21. Kc3 Bg6 22. Bf3 Rc2#
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!”   She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
lilredrooster
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January 17th, 2019 at 5:02:21 AM permalink
Quote: odiousgambit

1. c4 e5 2. d4 exd4 3. Qxd4 Nc6 4. Qe3+ Qe7 5. Nf3 Qxe3 6. Bxe3 Nf6 7. Nc3 Bb4 8. O-O-O Bxc3 9. bxc3 O-O 10. Nd4 Nxd4 11. cxd4 d6 12. g3 Bd7 13. Bg2 Rfe8 14. Bxb7 Rab8 15. Bg2 Ng4 16. Kd2 Nxe3 17. fxe3 Rb2+ 18. Kd3 Ba4 19. Ra1 Reb8 20. h3 Bc2+ 21. Kc3 Bg6 22. Bf3 Rc2#


Comments welcome.




well, you said comments welcome so I hope you don't resent a negative one.

I regard the notation you are using as cumbersome and unnecessary

the best notation IMHO is algebraic notation

i.e. : a common black response to a common white opening: d7d5

no x is necessary. if there is a capture it's going to be obvious

Standard algebraic notation (SAN) is the notation standardized by FIDE. It omits the starting file and rank of the piece, unless it is necessary to disambiguate the move.


this is the move d7d5. I posted this pic for those who might be new to chess. it should be self explanatory
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odiousgambit
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January 17th, 2019 at 5:09:54 AM permalink
well, I'm making my moves and using the chess.com thing to record the moves. This is the notation it generates. That site is much improved, with free analysis of your game.
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!”   She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
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January 17th, 2019 at 8:25:43 AM permalink
Quote: billryan

That's a silly attitude. Should a piano player quit playing because he will never be world class. Should I enjoy a game of basketball less because there are thousands that can destroy me.



I agree. I think my father was rather humiliated to be beaten by me at around the age of 13. If I were in his shoes, I'd be eager for a rematch. You'd have to ask him about the deeper reasons, and he is already gone.

A story about that -- several years later we were stranded on a Washington State Ferry due to high winds. We were just sitting there at the dock waiting for permission to leave, for hours. I had a chess set with me so just set out the pieces and hoped either my father would break his vow and play or somebody else would come along to accept my challenge.

Eventually someone did come along and played me. He didn't introduce himself at first, but after I beat him in a good game, he introduced himself as David Guterson. I suspect he was doing research for his book Snow Falling on Cedars.
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odiousgambit
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January 18th, 2019 at 3:25:17 AM permalink
I've cranked up the computer opponent and can now be expected to be beaten regularly. Here's a game you might find interesting, I threw in the towel around turn 8, it seemed hopeless for Black [me]. And another fine example of my poor ability to manage the fight for the center of the board.

Interestingly, though, the chess.com displays instant analysis, and I was again using it so it would record the moves, still wanting to actually play against the radioshack computer for reasons given upthread. I need to cover up that analysis, I can't turn it off, and it's hard not to glance at it.

Anyway, the analysis at the point where I was resigning indicated Black was substantially favored!?!! I couldn't believe it and let the computer [stockfish] finish for Black while the r-shack computer played White. Stockfish had seen that White was very vulnerable. It's an astonishing thing to watch. Stop it around turn 8 and tell me you wouldn't have resigned.

Again, to see it you can use https://www.chess.com/analysis-board-editor

1. Nf3 d5 2. d4 Nf6 3. Nc3 Nc6 4. Bf4 Bg4 5. Ne5 Nxe5 6. dxe5 d4 7. h3 dxc3 8. Qxd8+ Rxd8 9. exf6 cxb2 10. Rb1 Be6 11. Rxb2 b6 12. Bxc7 Rc8 13. fxe7 Bxe7 14. Be5 f6 15. Bd4 Ba3 16. Rb1 Rxc2 17. e4 Bxa2 18. Bb5+ Ke7 19. Rd1 Bb4+ 20. Kf1 Rd8 21. Kg1 Bb3 22. e5 Bc3 23. exf6+ gxf6 24. Rb1 Rxd4 25. Rxb3 Rd1+ 26. Bf1 Rcc1 27. Kh2 Be5+ 28. f4 Bxf4+ 29. g3 Rd2+ 30. Kg1 Bd6 31. Re3+ Kd7 32. h4

mate in 4 moves according to stockfish. Anyone can see White's rook is a goner and mate is unavoidable. You might consider some of White's time wasting pawn moves as an offer to resign. Bear in mind, the level is set very low still, for the r-shack computer playing White.
Last edited by: odiousgambit on Jan 18, 2019
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!”   She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
ThatDonGuy
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January 18th, 2019 at 7:42:48 AM permalink
Quote: lilredrooster

well, you said comments welcome so I hope you don't resent a negative one.

I regard the notation you are using as cumbersome and unnecessary

the best notation IMHO is algebraic notation

i.e. : a common black response to a common white opening: d7d5

no x is necessary. if there is a capture it's going to be obvious

Standard algebraic notation (SAN) is the notation standardized by FIDE. It omits the starting file and rank of the piece, unless it is necessary to disambiguate the move.


The only thing "cumbersome" I found about the notation is using "dxe4" instead of "de", which is what I thought was the standard notation for a pawn capture.
lilredrooster
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January 18th, 2019 at 8:06:13 AM permalink
Quote: ThatDonGuy

The only thing "cumbersome" I found about the notation is using "dxe4" instead of "de", which is what I thought was the standard notation for a pawn capture.



well, I guess it's just a matter of opinion. but for example Nxe5 - knight captures pawn in the 5 square

in SAN all you have to say for example is f3e5 (not referring to his game, I wasn't following it)
no need to say it's a pawn, no need to say it's a knight, no need to say x (capture)
all of that is obvious


I guess chess.com considers that notation more complete and more thorough for recording tournament games and that is why they use it
Last edited by: lilredrooster on Jan 18, 2019
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odiousgambit
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January 19th, 2019 at 4:14:46 AM permalink
Assuming this thread actually needs to die, I think any further game postings by me will be in my blog, so if anyone is actually following the action they can do so there. I'm not blaming anybody, I've managed to bore even other chess players I'm sure. This thread did inspire me to play some chess to pass the winter, so I guess I have to thank the OP, persona non grata notwithstanding.

But I invite any other lapsed players who might have been inspired to check back into things like me to fully check out the improved chess.com. There are a lot of options now that weren't there before.

After blundering as White in move 12, I decided to finish the game as Black against the Chess.com computer. The default is their level 2. It plays a really bad game, so that boosted my morale. Why do they make level 2 so lame?

1. Nc3 e5 2. e4 Bc5 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. Bb5 Nge7 5. O-O O-O 6. b3 d6 7. Bb2 Bg4 8. h3 Be6 9. Ng5 a6 10. Nxe6 fxe6 11. Be2 Nd4 12. f3 Nxe2+ 13. Kh1 Nxc3 14. Bxc3 Ng6 15. d4 Bb6 16. d5 Qe7 17. Qd2 Nf4 18. Ba5 exd5 19. b4 Bxa5 20. bxa5 Rab8 21. Rac1 b6 22. Rfd1 bxa5 23. Qxa5 Rb6 24. Rd2 Rfb8 25. Qa4 Rb1 26. exd5 Rxc1+ 27. Kh2 Rbb1 28. Qxa6 Rh1+ 29. Kg3 Nh5+ 30. Kf2 Qh4+ 31. Ke3 Qf4+ 32. Ke2 Rbe1+ 33. Kd3 Qe3+ 34. Kc4 Qc5+ 35. Kd3 Qd4#
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!”   She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
FTB
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January 19th, 2019 at 10:33:06 AM permalink
I only beat the computer at the highest level once.

Only once.

And this was when I was first learning the game. I taught myself and it took me months to accomplish the feat of beating this computer at the highest level.

I still remember that day and I think I still have the notations of the game recorded somewhere (painstakingly copied by hand to paper off the computer).

My God, I still remember that day. I felt like I just won on a last second shot in Game 7 of the NBA Finals.

Kinda silly when I look back at it now but still brings back good memories.
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EdCollins
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January 19th, 2019 at 10:56:27 AM permalink
Ah, a thread about chess.

I've played in about 80 over-the-board tournaments. (Although none since 2015.)

My high USCF rating was 1930.

I currently own more than 600 chess books.

I have a complete run of Chess Life magazines from 1971 to the present. (In addition to that, I have dozens and dozens of issues from the early to late '60s.)

I was an administrator for awhile on both US ChessLive and FICS.

My chess website (which I no longer update), is http://www.edcollins.com/chess

I often play several blitz games online everyday, lately on the lichess.org website.

So yes, chess was, is, and most likely always will be, an interest of mine. Lately however, I find myself spending more time playing backgammon than chess, another one of my passions. My backgammon website is: http://www.edcollins.com/backgammon
EdCollins
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January 19th, 2019 at 11:05:49 AM permalink
Quote: lilredrooster

I regard the notation you are using as cumbersome and unnecessary.
the best notation IMHO is algebraic notation...

His example IS algebraic notation.

Furthermore, out of the more than 600 chess books I own, that form of algebraic notation is by FAR the most common type used. It is not at all "cumbersome." (i.e. difficult to use, complicated.)

Yes, agreed, you don't NEED an "X" to denote captures, but using an x is actually far more common than omitting it.
AxelWolf
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January 19th, 2019 at 11:34:42 AM permalink
Quote: EdCollins



I often play several blitz games online everyday, lately on the lichess.org website.

What time structure do you play when you play blitz and what's your rating on blitz?

If I can ask, what's your username on that site?

FYI, I have played there a few times over the years. A few times I was thinking my opponent used a computer, sure enough, soon after, I recived a messages from the site saying, "you lost to a cheater, your rating points have been restored."
♪♪Now you swear and kick and beg us That you're not a gamblin' man Then you find you're back in Vegas With a handle in your hand♪♪ Your black cards can make you money So you hide them when you're able In the land of casinos and money You must put them on the table♪♪ You go back Jack do it again roulette wheels turinin' 'round and 'round♪♪ You go back Jack do it again♪♪
odiousgambit
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January 19th, 2019 at 12:03:57 PM permalink
Dreading cheating is what has me playing against computers for the most part. I think it is also one reason why so many like the blitz games, it being hard to consult a computer when playing those. I just don't like to play blitz, myself, being even worse at that.
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!”   She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
EdCollins
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January 19th, 2019 at 12:15:32 PM permalink
Quote: AxelWolf

What time structure do you play when you play blitz and what's your rating on blitz?

If I can ask, what's your username on that site?

I almost always play a quick 5+0 game. (Five minutes for the game, with no increment, for those that don't know what 5+0 indicates.)

My current rating, as I type this, is 1798 on that site. (It usually fluctuates between 1700 and 1850.)

My username is Ed_Collins.

I've only been playing on this site for a year. At one of my backgammon meets a year ago, one of my backgammon opponents happened to mention it. I didn't think a chess website could offer any decent features at all. I, of course was used to ICC and FICS... the dedicated chess servers that first required you to download an interface to access the site. I was very, very surprised at lichess.org... how it was laid out, the features, etc. Since then I haven't played anywhere else.
EdCollins
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January 19th, 2019 at 12:27:03 PM permalink
There was a time when I would immediately analyze my last game, whether it was over-the-board or online, with a chess engine. That was lots of fun for me... seeing exactly where I (or my opponent) went wrong and stepping through the entire game, one move at a time. There was a time when I would enjoy studying chess more so than actually playing chess.

Alas, I don't study much any more. I now just play casually for fun and don't examine anything. Not surprisingly, I also stopped playing in chess tourneys, although after I retire (ten years?) I might start entering them again. It takes a lot of time and effort to stay sharp and to be competitive... and right now I don't have the time for it. (I have lots of other interests too!)

I can agree with Wiz... since I was also born simply average at the game and any skill I have is also through lots of study and hard work.
FTB
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January 19th, 2019 at 2:20:39 PM permalink
Yes! I can relate. At one time many moons ago, I was borderline obsessed with chess. What the hell, I was obsessed.

I thought (still do, I guess) it was the most beautiful game ever created. That it wasn't just a game, it was more than that on so many levels.

It got to a point I recognized I was spending too much time playing, analyzing, studying... that I had to force myself to step away and take a break from it. But there were certain games, moves, etc., that would continue to haunt me.

Now, I play only for fun, once in a while, and purposely on an app on an old tablet where the results and notations are not automatically recorded. Otherwise, I will analyze... a loss may cause me to play the rematch to avenge the bitter defeat despite errands that had to be run... and I will fall back into... the obsession.

And mind you, I was and am still not some grandmaster by any stretch of the imagination!
Last edited by: FTB on Jan 19, 2019
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lilredrooster
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January 21st, 2019 at 1:24:55 PM permalink
I sometimes think of the amazing genius who invented chess
nobody knows who that was but wikipedia says it probably originated in India before the 6th century AD
the invention of playing cards was also amazing but I think not as amazing as chess

the person who invented chess was a human, and I'm a human, but whoever it was has abilities so far beyond mine it's really incredible
the foolish sayings of a rich man often pass for words of wisdom by the fools around him
terapined
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January 21st, 2019 at 2:09:45 PM permalink
Anybody play an APP game called "Really bad chess"
If you lose, the program will give extra rooks, knights or queens
Instead of pawns, a few will be a more valuable piece
You lose, next game you get more valuable pieces
You win, they cut down on valuable pieces
Its really fun
Its just a forum. Nothing here to get obsessed about.
Wizard
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January 21st, 2019 at 2:10:22 PM permalink
If there is sufficient interest, I think we should have a chess tournament at the time of the next WoV Spring Fling.
"For with much wisdom comes much sorrow." -- Ecclesiastes 1:18 (NIV)
beachbumbabs
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January 21st, 2019 at 3:19:17 PM permalink
Quote: Wizard

If there is sufficient interest, I think we should have a chess tournament at the time of the next WoV Spring Fling.



If I have a vote, I'd rather make it backgammon. More people could play with it being an easier game to learn.

But if there's enough interest for chess, go for it.
If the House lost every hand, they wouldn't deal the game.
FTB
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January 23rd, 2019 at 3:09:50 PM permalink
Quote: terapined

Anybody play an APP game called "Really bad chess"
If you lose, the program will give extra rooks, knights or queens
Instead of pawns, a few will be a more valuable piece
You lose, next game you get more valuable pieces
You win, they cut down on valuable pieces
Its really fun



I have to look that up. Sounds interesting.

I'm at a point where chess-like games are better for me now than chess itself (see my previous post on this thread for reasons why).

My favorite chess-like game used to be on Yahoo! Games many moons ago (I would also play straight up chess there, too). The problem is, I can't remember the name of it!

I have been looking for a version of it for years because of how fun and challenging it was but even after Googling it and looking up a list of past Yahoo! Games, I cannot find it.

In fact, it was playable off Yahoo! Games but was a separate game altogether that had nothing to do with your Yahoo! ratings or playing another human online.

The main piece was only the knight and it followed chess rules and limitations but from what I remember, the point of the game was to complete puzzles or goals to continue advancing levels, not to checkmate.

Would download this in a heartbeat and play again for hours if I could find the exact version or something similar to it.
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FTB
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January 24th, 2019 at 5:27:46 AM permalink
Quote: lilredrooster

I sometimes think of the amazing genius who invented chess
nobody knows who that was but wikipedia says it probably originated in India before the 6th century AD
the invention of playing cards was also amazing but I think not as amazing as chess

the person who invented chess was a human, and I'm a human, but whoever it was has abilities so far beyond mine it's really incredible



Or geniuses. It's believed in its infancy, a form of chess traveled to different regions which added their own spin to it until it became what we know chess to be today.

So perhaps one person invented a primitive version of it and some others added to it (for example, it appears the queen wasn't as powerful in the beginning). It makes sense no one mere mortal was able to come up with chess on his or her own.

Maybe it's divine creation. Who or what else could have created what is arguably the most perfect game with its beautiful nuances?
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AxelWolf
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January 24th, 2019 at 6:02:33 AM permalink
Quote: EdCollins

There was a time when I would immediately analyze my last game, whether it was over-the-board or online, with a chess engine. That was lots of fun for me... seeing exactly where I (or my opponent) went wrong and stepping through the entire game, one move at a time. There was a time when I would enjoy studying chess more so than actually playing chess.

Alas, I don't study much any more. I now just play casually for fun and don't examine anything. Not surprisingly, I also stopped playing in chess tourneys, although after I retire (ten years?) I might start entering them again. It takes a lot of time and effort to stay sharp and to be competitive... and right now I don't have the time for it. (I have lots of other interests too!)

I can agree with Wiz... since I was also born simply average at the game and any skill I have is also through lots of study and hard work.

I dislike studying the game, and I never have. I'm not bad considering I have never read a chess book, never been in a chess club and never played in tournaments. I have played VS computers a few time but that's very boring to me. I beat guys that are rated 1900, but I also lose to guys rated 1400 with 10+0 clock . I'm fairly aggressive when I play.
♪♪Now you swear and kick and beg us That you're not a gamblin' man Then you find you're back in Vegas With a handle in your hand♪♪ Your black cards can make you money So you hide them when you're able In the land of casinos and money You must put them on the table♪♪ You go back Jack do it again roulette wheels turinin' 'round and 'round♪♪ You go back Jack do it again♪♪
terapined
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January 24th, 2019 at 6:14:58 AM permalink
Quote: FTB

I have to look that up. Sounds interesting.


Its just a forum. Nothing here to get obsessed about.
Rigondeaux
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LuckyPhow
January 24th, 2019 at 9:23:21 AM permalink
I am remarkably terrible at chess. Even checkers, which my little sister used to destroy me in.

However, it's interesting to me as an observer. I've been watching a lot of videos on this channel, in which a guy breaks down games by top players now, and from the past.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yGnpewUKP88
FTB
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January 24th, 2019 at 1:40:41 PM permalink
Quote: terapined



Really Bad Chess might actually be a fun and interesting way to learn chess for beginners who were just taught the game but need help mastering the subtleties of it so they can become better.

I learned predominantly by playing computers purposely at the higher levels which seems counterintuitive now that I look back at it.
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lilredrooster
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January 24th, 2019 at 3:07:23 PM permalink
Quote: Rigondeaux


However, it's interesting to me as an observer. I've been watching a lot of videos on this channel, in which a guy breaks down games by top players now, and from the past.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yGnpewUKP88




I agree that that is interesting.

what I find most interesting is to set the chess.com computer at level 9 (not level 10 because that would be all stalemates as level 10 is either equal or close to the level of a Grandmaster) and play against the level 9 with a different bot, this one:


https://nextchessmove.com

you will beat level 9 most of the time with this chess bot.
it is quite amazing to me to play the brilliant moves of this bot which I could not have thought of
some moves make no sense, as the bot is planning many moves ahead and I can't really understand what it's planning

even though it's not actually me beating chess.com's level 9 I take over when my bot has secured an advantage and try to win
it really is fascinating to see the moves and counter moves
Last edited by: lilredrooster on Jan 24, 2019
the foolish sayings of a rich man often pass for words of wisdom by the fools around him
odiousgambit
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January 24th, 2019 at 5:51:46 PM permalink
Quote: lilredrooster

I agree that that is interesting.

what I find most interesting is to set the chess.com computer at level 9 (not level 10 because that would be all stalemates as level 10 is either equal or close to the level of a Grandmaster) and play against the level 9 with a different bot, this one:


https://nextchessmove.com

you will beat level 9 most of the time with this chess bot.

dunno, depends on 'who' oh, I think I know what you mean, never mind
Quote:

it is quite amazing to me to play the brilliant moves of this bot which I could not have thought of
some moves make no sense, as the bot is planning many moves ahead and I can't really understand what it's planning

even though it's not actually me beating chess.com's level 9 I take over when my bot has secured an advantage and try to win
it really is fascinating to see the moves and counter moves

I've been surprised how bad the lower levels are in chess.com. Why?
Last edited by: odiousgambit on Jan 24, 2019
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!”   She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
odiousgambit
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January 24th, 2019 at 6:05:01 PM permalink
I've started playing about every day. The last time I gave it a whirl after not playing for years, I got really discouraged quick. That was about 2 years ago and this time around I think i accepted just how badly I have degraded and buckled down to play better.

Since others are keeping this thread alive too I'll keep posting here.

Playing the old radio shack computer again, at a level I should be able to beat 'sometimes' but the level is still quite able to humble me. This game puzzled me though, why did it basically blunder as black at move 35? This computer never fails to 'see' a few moves ahead at this level. In any case, when we get into an end game where I am not at a disadvantage, I should win; in this case there were a lot of wrinkles. I decided I too had to sacrifice a knight later on to avoid a draw. Game is stopped at 'mate in 6' according to later analysis. That analysis said my own sacrifice was a blunder, but I dunno. [move 63]

1. Nf3 Nf6 2. d4 d5 3. Nc3 Nc6 4. Bf4 Bf5 5. Nb5 Nh5 6. Nxc7+ Kd7 7. Nxa8 Nxf4
1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Bxc6 dxc6 5. Nc3 Bd6 6. d3 Ne7 7. O-O O-O 8. Be3 Bg4 9. h3 Be6 10. d4 Bc4 11. Re1 f6 12. b3 Be6 13. dxe5 fxe5 14. Qe2 Qc8 15. Ng5 Rd8 16. Nxe6 Qxe6 17. Nb1 Bb4 18. Bd2 Bc5 19. Be3 Bxe3 20. Qxe3 Rd7 21. Nd2 Rad8 22. Nf3 Qd6 23. Qc1 Qc5 24. Qb2 Ng6 25. Rac1 Kh8 26. Qb1 Nf4 27. Kf1 Qc3 28. Qa1 Qxa1 29. Rxa1 Ng6 30. Ke2 Nf4+ 31. Kf1 Re7 32. Rad1 Rxd1 33. Rxd1 Kg8 34. h4 Kf7 35. g3 Nh3 36. Kg2 Nxf2 37. Kxf2 Kf6 38. Ke3 g6 39. g4 h5 40. g5+ Ke6 41. Rd8 a5 42. Kd3 Rf7 43. Ke3 Re7 44. Ne1 Rd7 45. Rxd7 Kxd7 46. Nf3 Ke6 47. Kd3 c5 48. a3 c6 49. Kc4 b6 50. c3 Kd6 51. Kd3 Ke6 52. Kc2 Kd6 53. b4 axb4 54. axb4 c4 55. Nd2 b5 56. Nf1 Ke6 57. Kd2 Kd6 58. Ke3 Ke6 59. Kf3 Kd6 60. Ng3 Ke6 61. Nh1 Kd6 62. Nf2 Ke6 63. Ng4 hxg4+ 64. Kxg4 Kd7 65. h5 gxh5+ 66. Kxh5 Ke7 67. Kh6 Kf7 68. Kh7 c5 69. g6+ Kf6 70. g7 cxb4 71. g8=Q bxc3 72. Qg6+ Ke7 73. Qg5+ Kd6 74. Qc1 b4 75. Kg6 Ke6 76. Qd1 Ke7 77. Qd5 c2 78. Qxc4 b3 79. Qc7+ Ke6 80. Qc4+ Ke7 81. Qc3 Ke6
the next time Dame Fortune toys with your heart, your soul and your wallet, raise your glass and praise her thus: “Thanks for nothing, you cold-hearted, evil, damnable, nefarious, low-life, malicious monster from Hell!”   She is, after all, stone deaf. ... Arnold Snyder
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