Dynamic Move Tables and Long Branches with Backtracking in Computer Chess

by   Kieran Greer, et al.

The idea of dynamic move chains has been described in a preceding paper [10]. Re-using an earlier piece of search allows the tree to be forward-pruned, which is known to be dangerous, because it can potentially remove new information that would only be realised through a more exhaustive search process. The justification is the integrity in the position and small changes between positions make it more likely that an earlier result still applies. Larger problems where exhaustive search is not possible would also like a method that can guess accurately. This paper has added to the forward-pruning technique by using 'move tables' that can act in the same way as Transposition Tables, but for moves not positions. They use an efficient memory structure and have put the design into the context of short or long-term memories. The long-term memory includes simply rote-learning of other players' games. The forward-pruning technique can also be fortified to help to remove some potential errors. Another idea is 'long branches'. This plays a short move sequence, before returning to a full search at the resulting leaf nodes. Therefore, with some configuration the dynamic tables can be reliably used and relatively independently of the position. This has advanced some of the future work theory of the earlier paper, and made more explicit where logical plans and more knowledge-based approaches might be applied. The author would argue that the process is a very human approach to searching for chess moves.


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