Various Questions - Newbie Stuff

Questions and answers for COW Macintosh and Windows
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JerryHobby
Posts: 4
Joined: Tue Jun 20, 2017 7:23 pm

Various Questions - Newbie Stuff

Post by JerryHobby »

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1. On the bottom left, in the chess engine window, it has two areas. The top area show "..c5", the bottom area shows "..c6". The top area changes more frequently. It appears that the top is the "thinking" line and the bottom is the "chosen favorite". However, if I click the little red arrow, it keeps the value from the top area. Can someone explain this area to me a little more clearly? Also, how long do I need to wait for a solid answer to choose as a "best engine move" to move into my opening database? If I wait a long time, it changes to other lines. I don't know how to choose a best line/move.

2. In the candidates window, you see a variety of moves. "..e6" shows a score of -34. "..c5" shows a score of "+5", which benefits white. But the color bar looks like it's a stronger move for black. Am I correct in assuming the color bar shows real world results while the score is the engine prediction and they won't always agree?

3. How do I use "certainty"? Does that help in prioritizing candidates for training or is it only for my own reference? I can't see any value to this feature.

4. I understand what informants symbols mean, but not how to use them in this software. Should I set the symbol based on the visible position? Does that propagate upwards in the tree? Again I'm not sure how to use this in this software.

5. I built a book with opening moves. Giving one candidate for white and using "pedigree moves" for black. I've built out a tree for training several moves deep on each branch. This makes sense to me so far. Open to suggestions. What I don't see is how to use this with my games file. There's a lot of functionality for importing games. Why would I do that? So far what I've done is copied my opening book and then imported my games into that copy so I can identify anomalies. Is that the intention of this feature? Just curious if there's some training or evaluation that I'm overlooking.


Sorry for so many questions. Thanks in advance for all replies. I'll post another topic for bug reports. I'm really enjoying the features of this software as far as what I've learned. I love chessbase for some things, but the opening book training feature is clearly stronger in COW.
jgreenlee
Posts: 51
Joined: Tue May 17, 2022 12:00 am

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FreeRepublic
Posts: 115
Joined: Wed Jan 23, 2019 12:31 am

Re: Various Questions - Newbie Stuff

Post by FreeRepublic »

This is more than two years old, so you might never read this! Still, it could be useful to you or someone else.

"1. On the bottom left, in the chess engine window, it has two areas. The top area show "..c5", the bottom area shows "..c6". The top area changes more frequently. It appears that the top is the "thinking" line and the bottom is the "chosen favorite"."

I interpreted things a little differently. I agree that the top move is the thinking area, but it is also the current favorite. The bottom area is the former favorite. This updates depending on the results of analysis. That's my understanding. Moderators, is that correct?

"2. In the candidates window, you see a variety of moves. "..e6" shows a score of -34. "..c5" shows a score of "+5", which benefits white."

Your settings may be different than mine. I see a traditional evaluation symbol, =, +=, and so on based on backsolving the position. One could use engine numerical ratings instead.

Also, I get a count of subsequent lines as I stumble upon them. Over time, this gives me a sense of the importance-popularity-criticality of the line.

2. (continued) "Am I correct in assuming the color bar shows real world results?" I think so.

"3. How do I use "certainty"? Does that help in prioritizing candidates for training or is it only for my own reference?" I think it is only for your own reference. It is a subjective judgment. It applies to the move and is not inherited by the next move. Nor is it the result of backsolving. Moderators please correct me if I am wrong.

"4. I understand what informants symbols mean, but not how to use them in this software. Should I set the symbol based on the visible position? Does that propagate upwards in the tree? Again I'm not sure how to use this in this software."

I have become a fan of the backsolve command. For example, go to the end of the line. You can evaluate it and backsolve to indicate the overall strength of the line. I believe COW will now look at the result, say black won, and backsolve accordingly. If Black won, but you think he won on time, you can override. Also, if you think the game result is not indicative of the line chosen, you can look for improvements. My settings make backsolving automatic. So once I find a better line and evaluate it, the evaluation is inherited by earlier moves to indicate the overall strength of the variation.

"5. I built a book with opening moves. Giving one candidate for white and using "pedigree moves" for black." That makes sense. You are playing against the pedigree move. That is clever, though not the way I use COW.

I think Mike's idea is keep track of your moves (games) and improvements that are possible. That way, you build a repertoire based on your games. That makes sense also.

I proceed in two different ways. Sometimes I start with a book. This could be a conventional book, or an electronic book. I take that as my starting point. The other way I proceed is to start with a PGN game file and import it. Sometimes I combine these approaches.
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