A blog about learning go and learning computer go. A go beginner tries to improve his game and use their software engineering skills to build a computer go player. Entries about their go reading, computer go reading, go playing, go improvement, go concepts (seki, ko, miai, etc) and progress building the computer go player.

Saturday, June 25, 2005

A new protocol for computer-go ?

As mentioned previously I've been thinking about a go protocol, a protocol that is suitable to use everywhere GTP is plus:

  • Ruleset negotiation
  • Handicap and komi negotiation
  • Extendable (extensible for you Americans) for unusual boards (large sizes and so forth)
  • End-game negotiation for the liveness of groups (and thus score)

The whole concept of "negotiation" is, of course, foreign to GTP, in which there is a controller (which as the name implies is in control) and an engine (which has almost no control).

The other issue is that computers, having effectively infinite patience equalled only by their stupidity, are not very good at negotiation. The issue of end-game negotiation is only of the perennially verbose yet unresolved subjects on the computer-go mailing list (see for example this thread). This undermines my confidence that computer-go programs, left to themselves, will ever reach a consensus.

If they can't be left to themselves, then suddenly we don't have a two-party protocol, we have a multi-way protocol, which opens up new vistas, in terms of complexity and implementation effort…

... a complete can of worms.

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