01 June 2020

World Champion Komodo

Which engine is the current World Computer Champion? If you follow the TCEC, you might say Leela Chess Zero, as in Leela Beat Stockfish in TCEC S17 & CCC13 Finals (April 2020). But, no, if you go to my page World Chess Championship : Computer Chess, you'll see that winner of the last four championships was Komodo. The full picture of the last 20 years is captured in the following image from that page.

I documented the latest WCCC tournament in 25th World Computer Championship [ICGA] (May 2020) on my World Chess Championship Blog. In fact, the event was held in August 2019, but I forgot about it until earlier this year.

In the 'Candidates Tournament' (aka 'Premier Division') for TCEC S17 (Season 17), Komodo finished a strong fourth after Leela, Stockfish, and AllieStein. Some observers consider the correct name for the 'ICGA World Computer Championship' is simply 'ICGA Computer Championship'. The ICGA event has been declining in importance over the last ten years. That's why my Computer Chess page groups the events as...

Full pages
ZIP files only
Blog posts

...indicating that I've attached less documentation to recent events. Other observers feel otherwise. Some recent discussions on the Talkchess.com forum have been:-

Two members of the Komodo team -- Larry Kaufman ('lkaufman') and Mark Lefler ('mjlef') -- participate regularly in the Talkchess discussions; Don Dailey, a third member of the team, died in 2013. Other ICGA WCCC participants of yesteryear -- Robert Hyatt ('bob'; author of Cray Blitz and Crafty) and Ed Schroder ('Rebel'; also the name of his engine) -- appear frequently on Talkchess. In the first thread linked above ('WCCC vs TCEC'), Hyatt wrote,

The ACM events have become pretty much irrelevant, NOT because of the Rybka controversy. NOT because of the ACM leadership. But because of the evolution of world-wide computing. Makes no sense to travel and take two weeks, spend thousands of dollars on travel, hotels and food, when you can compete from your recliner in your living room, and not miss a single day of work.

Where Hyatt writes 'ACM', think 'ICGA'. For 'Rybka controversy', see The Rybka Affair: An Official Reaction (January 2012), and The Rybka - ICGA Ethics Judgement (October 2015) on this blog. He underestimates the importance of the Rybka affair to the rest of the chess world. The Rybka punishment was worse than the crime.

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