Talk:ITEP Chess Program

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great video, I can recognize Georgy Adelson-Velsky in the interview. Some audio translation would be nice!

In the video, the central television announcer interviews the authors of the ITEP chess program a week after the end of the match with the Kotok-McCarthy program. On the screen we see the ITEP chess team in full: Adelson-Velsky (sitting next to the announcer), Uskov (sitting in the foreground), Bitman (standing in the center, then left), Arlazarov (standing on the left, then in the center), Zhivotovsky (standing on the right). At the beginning of the television program, the announcer asks Adelson-Velsky about the goals of creating chess programs. In the middle of the program, Bitman demonstrates a machine search for a known chess combination. In the end, Arlazarov talks about the benefits of chess programming.
P.S. I'll try to edit the subtitles in Russian. - Rom77
Russian subtitles sent for approval to the author of the video. Here is a google translation into English. Any corrections? - Rom77


Chess and math are not such a rare combination these days. We have been witnesses with you, at least read about it, or heard that electronic computers play chess, and large chess players and grandmasters take part in such tournaments.

And recently, just recently, last week, the first international chess match ended, in which grandmasters did not take part, but electronic computers that worked according to the Soviet program and the American one.

This unique match lasted almost a year, and as you know, all this year the machines worked according to the programs set by the person.

Here is the Soviet program, in two versions, developed by the mathematicians that you see today on your screens. These are Georgy Adelson-Velsky, Vladimir Arlazarov, Alexander Bitman, Alexander Zhivotovsky and Anatoly Uskov.

At that moment when we are conducting our report, the machine continues to ponder the moves that follow. And mathematicians conduct their own, understandable, obviously, only to them conversations. But now I want to interrupt them briefly.

Excuse me please, I want to intervene. Thanks a lot.


Georgy Maksimovich, my first question is for you. I would like to know the scientific meaning of such matches, which was held. Rather, not the scientific meaning of the match, but why are mathematical chess programs compiled?

Well, chess programs are heuristic programming programs. This is a heuristic program. What is heuristic programming? This is an attempt to solve creative problems by machine.

That is, to teach the machine to solve creative problems?

That is, to teach the machine to solve creative problems. Why do we start with chess? There are many creative tasks that ... about which might be more interesting. The fact is that we are at the very beginning of the journey. And in the beginning, chess is more convenient for us than other tasks. Because in chess we can better understand ... it is easier to understand the value of our ideas.

That is, chess is the most convenient model for ...

To start work.

To start. Clear.


Yes, please.

The machine made a move, let's see it.



May I have a look? And here I see 32 76.

This is a machine code in conditional encoding.


So the machine went from the 32nd field. You can find it yourself.

Yes. I can, huh? One, two, three, two. This is the queen.

Went to the 76th field.

77. Six. Bishop, huh?

Yes. This field c2 beats the bishop on field g6.

Well, I'll try it now. It is so done, it seems.



Do you want to comment on this move? You are welcome.

Yes, I want to say why the machine made such a move. So the machine took the queen of the bishop. At first glance, the move seems impossible, but it is actually a beautiful combination. Let's see what happens next. Black, in response, has one move. The capture of the queen. After which White again sacrifices the bishop on the f7-square. The bishop beats f7. Check.

Sasha, please tell me, have people proposed such a combination, used it ever? Or was she found by a machine?

This combination was found by Leningrad masters in the thirties. And they found her as a result of home analysis. It took them a while to sit in the cabinet silence and find this combination. And the machine, then, made this move, well, you saw, thought it out for about five minutes, approximately. But do not think that everything is so easy for her. In this place, it means that she, so to speak, was a little lucky.


So, it means Black played the rook beats f7. White responds with a rook. Moreover, we are now moving the pieces, but the machine already foresaw all this when it made its move. She saw all these options. Black plays the king beats h8. And White plays back all the donated material by the move, the knight beats f7, check. The king leaves, and after the knight beats d6, there arises an endgame with an extra pawn for White. And for a human, the realization of this advantage is no longer difficult.


Ok, thanks, Sasha. I wanted to ask about the prospects of such chess programs. Volodya, it seems your hobby. You are welcome.

Well, here Georgy Maksimych said that such programs are of great importance in the general sense. What in the future, with the help of them we may someday learn to know how a person thinks. And I want to say that these programs are already of great importance. In a narrow sense, so to speak. In the sense that the ideas and methods that we use when creating these programs are already finding application in a number of other tasks. So, for example, here Adelson-Velsky was, well, together with Filler, the first network planning program was created. On ideas very close to those that were used in chess programs. That is, many ready-made schemes from chess programs were used that way. Therefore, these programs are important not only in the future, so to speak, in the distant future, but already now they are of great importance for the people ... for the development of programming methods, I do not know, for the economy. In any case, they give outlets directly, so to speak, into the national economy.


Thanks a lot. I will not bother you. I wish you success. Does the machine keep thinking?

Yes, she is thinking about the next move. Black has a rather difficult position.

And, does she alternately think over the white move or the black move?


Well then, I wish both the machine and you success. Thanks a lot.

GerdIsenberg (talk) 10:05, 20 January 2020 (CET) Thanks for the translation Rom77, very nice!