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   Author  Topic: Decisions and self-respect  (Read 1193 times)

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My point is ...

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Decisions and self-respect
« on: 2006-03-13 10:21:15 »
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I came across this interesting point in a recent interview of chess grandmaster Vladimir Kramnik:


VK: [...] These are elements that are the weak spots of computers. A very combinational player who relies on his calculating skills…

FF: Or her calculating skills…

VK: Yes, exactly, like Judit. These players have much less chances against computers, because they are going to lose the battle in calculation anyway. My own play is not based on calculation, so that in spite of all the plusses which computers have I also have a few trumps myself. There are some very strong players who have no trumps against computers, but I think I have a few, and I will try to use them.

FF: In Bahrain you played a dramatic sacrifice against Fritz. That was pure calculation.

VK: Yes, game six. You know the computer is quite frightening, but I have a certain self-respect as a chess player. If I think that some move is the best, even if I understand that it is not wise to play it against a computer, I still have to make it. It is very easy to lose your self-respect if you make weaker moves on purpose. It is very difficult to force myself to do it. At that time I thought the knight sacrifice was very interesting, I liked it, so I made it, even though I knew it was very risky. Of course it was a wrong decision, because the computer out-calculated me.
<end snip>

[rhinoceros] This kind of "self-respect" is not uncommon. I wondered how it can be rationalized. Essentially, you have to make a decision on a particular problem and your "honor system" forces your hand. It seems like evaluating the act of solving the particular problem in the big scheme of things.

By the way, this was this game mentioned:

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