22 April 2019

TCEC S15 DivP Nears Finish; CCC8 Half-Way

Let's summarize last week's post, TCEC S15 DivP Underway; Leela Wins CCC7 Final, about the status of two important, ongoing engine-vs-engine competitions:-

TCEC: Stockfish is currently leading the premier division, followed by Leela (aka LCZero, Lc0), KomodoMCTS (Monte Carlo version), and Houdini. • CCC: Leela was the surprise winner of CCC7, finishing ahead of Stockfish by a convincing margin. CCC8, nicknamed 'Deep Dive' by the organizers, is already underway.

The engines have continued slugging it out for the past week, a long time in engine play, so let's check on their current ststus.

TCEC: The season 15 premier division is in the final round of play with Stockfish holding first place, Leela second, and the other engines trailing by a considerable margin. Since the rules specify, 'The top 2 engines promote to the Superfinal', we can anticipate the same two finalists as in season 14. I reported on that match in Stockfish Wins TCEC S14; CCC6 S2 Underway (February 2019):-

The final score [was] +10-9=81 (50.5-49.5) in Stockfish's favor. That's as narrow a match win as exists in chess, much to the delight of Stockfish fans and the chagrin of Leela fans.

Will Leela fans get their revenge in S15? If past schedules are an indication of future performance, we might see TCEC Cup 3 before the Superfinal (aka final) starts. Leela won TCEC Cup 2.

As an aside, what happened to Chessdom.com? The site hasn't issued a report on TCEC since 12 March and hasn't issued a report on any other news since end-January. The subdomain tcec.chessdom.com ('TCEC - Live Chess Broadcast') is alive and ccrl.chessdom.com shows normal activity, but the rest is dead as a doornail.

CCC: Chess.com issued a report on CCC7, Lc0 Wins Computer Chess Championship, Makes History:-

The machine-learning chess engine Lc0 won the Chess.com Computer Chess Championship last weekend, making history as the first neural-network project to take the title. Lc0, which taught itself how to play chess, is now at the game's pinnacle as the champion computer engine.

The report also introduced the next competition:-

Can Lc0 defend its title in a longer time control? CCC 8: Deep Dive is live now, featuring 24 of the world's top chess engines playing at a rapid time control of 15 minutes plus a five-second increment per move.

CCC8 uses an escalation format, meaning that the engines enter the competition in reverse order of strength -- last ranked starts first, first ranked last -- and play full mini-matches against each of the engines that have already started play. As of this writing, a little more than half of the engines have started play, and the final result is anyone's guess. The official schedule projects 1104 games total.

[For further information from the various stakeholders in the engine-to-engine events, see the tab 'TCEC/CCC Links' at the top of this page.]

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