Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Final release of Schoolbook Zillions file.

As I mentioned in a blog entry from a year ago, I have had a lot of interest in chess variants, and have worked on and off on making a "Zillions" file for a variant I "invented" over two years ago, Schoolbook Chess.

Well, this variant never caught on. Only two or three games of this variant have been played where I wasn't one of the players of the variant, and only about two dozen human-vs-human games of this variant have ever been played. I went to a lot of work on this variant; I used computer-vs-computer games (having the computer play itself a number of times, using a couple of programs that can play Schoolbook) to come up with a number of mating positions. I did some opening analysis. I added some annotated games. No one was interested; chess players are averse to the idea of changing the rules of chess, and people in the chess variant community are too interested in their own "invented" variants to pay serious attention to other people's variants.

So, I am putting Schoolbook chess to rest. I have made a final version of the Zillions file for Schoolbook; I added four more mating positions (with one exception, all of these are from computer-vs-computer games played in August of 2007), made a PDF file of all 20 total mating positions, and this will be my last release of the Schoolbook zillions file.

The file is available here:
Now that this is released, I am declaring Schoolbook dead. I have other geek projects (MaraDNS, ObHack) that have generated more interest and that I contribute more to the world working on.

- Sam