Tuesday, 19 March 2013

Historical video of World Microprocessor Chess Championship, 1985

Recently somebody posted a video of the WMCC held in 1985! (link at the bottom of the page)

This video is of the World Microcomputer Chess Championship (WMCC) held in the World Trade Center, Amsterdam, 1985! Overall 16 teams participated and it was won by Mephisto! In fact, Mephisto had 3 versions running in that tournament and they took the first 3 spots! (The programs were written in Assembly language!!!)

Mephisto was designed by Richard Lang (yup the same guy who later designed Chess Genius)
Mephisto was running on a 16-bit Motorola 68000 microprocessor (back in those days, my company Motorola made microprocessors! Now it is a "software company", having outsourced the manufacturing  unit to Flextronics)

On the rest day, the Dutch GM Gennadi Sosonko (2550) gave a 31 board simul including 10 computers! The simul lasted a whooping 8 hours and he scored 25.5 - 5.5

An interesting position

Blitz Monster Y - Turbostar K
Position after 61. Kc1

In this position, Turbostar played 61... Rb6? and the game ended in a draw after some moves.

Instead 61... Rxb7!! (Engines like Critter find this move and the winning line in a few seconds! ) 62. Rxb7 f2 63. Rb4+ Kf5

 64. Rb5+ Ke6 (64... Kg6?? 65. h5+ and White wins) 65. Rb6+ Kf7 66. Rb7+ Kg6

and the Black pawn cannot be stopped from Queening.

Tournament Crosstable (Top 5)
1Mephisto Amsterdam 1flag GBR68020 (32 bit, std. freq.)8.0829.029.00Champ!
2Mephisto Amsterdam 3flag GBR68000 (16 bit)7.0827.524.50
3Mephisto Amsterdam 2flag GBR68000 (16 bit)7.0827.524.25
4Princhess 6flag SWE6502 (8 bit)4.5835.012.50
5Blitz Monster Yflag USA6502 (8 bit)4.0836.014.00
source: http://www.grappa.univ-lille3.fr/icga/round.php?tournament=63

PGN download

More details and pics

Video (in German) - also features Susan Polgar in the end!

Source : Ed Schroder mentioned about these videos on his site and on talkchess.com.