Thursday, September 22, 2011

Big Brother is on my side

I just won a game of Blitz on the ICC site. Well, not exactly 'win' as in checkmate or resign. In fact I was awarded the win by "JudgeBot". It thought that my queen looked pretty strong against a bishop and a knight and that I would have had plenty of time on the clock to eventually deliver a fatal blow - if my opponent hadn't bailed out and disconnected. Here's how "JudgeBot" describes itself:

"JudgeBot is a computer program that monitors every game in which your opponent disconnects. If JudgeBot determines that you are clearly winning, it will award the win to you ... and the game will appear as a win in your (games) history. There is no need to request the win or search for days for your opponent to resume!  It's automatic without you doing anything."

"We understand that in most cases when you get disconnected, you try to reconnect and resume the game. We apologize if your game got adjudicated, but keep in mind that JudgeBot only gives you a loss if it decides you are clearly losing the position. If the position has hope, it will not give you a loss and you can resume the game."

It's a great idea, I think and seems to work very well. Of course this is not going to stop me from extrapolating the concept into George Orwell territory ... by asking if you have you heard about the new program that's being developed? It's an extension of the "JudgeBot" program and goes by the name of "ToadBot"

ToadBot - Press Release

Thanks to new advances in Artificial Intelligence programming, a new plugin has been developed which completely removes human error from the Royal game. "ToadBot" analyses all aspects of your games and employs a predicative binary algorithm to determine what should or would have happened under ideal conditions in a perfect world. Obviously we would really like to be working on software to make a 'perfect world' but this is suffering from budgetary issues. Oh, yes, political issues too. Oh, and also ...

Anyway, "ToadBot" is capable of analysing any and all issues surrounding your chess games, including data collected from electrodes attached to you, your opponent and next door's cat. It takes into account such issues as:

How badly you want to win
How badly your opponent wants a beer as opposed to playing another boring game against you
How hungry the cat is
Whether you're playing chess to avoid dealing with other, more important, things in your miserable, and unimportant, life
And so on and so forth.

Typically, "ToadBot" soon passes over your unforgiveable ignorance of any but the most basic of opening lines and understands that your 12 move is not the "brilliancy" that you fondly believe it to be - but was simply the result of a mouse slip. It "knows" you see?

However it is also realises that losing the game will shatter your already dangerously low self-esteem - with dire consequences. At this point it will simulate the various scenarios (euphemism for 'rows') with your wife resulting from you losing the game and makes a judgement based on menstrual cycles, meteorological forecasts for the state of Nevada and, well, everything really - including how much time you have left on the clock.

And the result of it's cogitations? Oh. Um - you lose. Again. Blame the cat.

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