[Retros] rights & ocassions /answering Andrew

Kevin Begley kevinjbegley at gmail.com
Thu May 15 13:58:17 EDT 2014

Hi Guus,

Thank you for the clarification.
I fully agree that all assumptions should be explicitly stated, somewhere
in the Codex.

However, there seems to be some confusion concerning the state of a

An orthodox chess position may be reduced to the following description:
1) the diagram (board orientation, and placement of all pieces upon it),
2) the set of all castling rights,
3) the set of en passant rights, and (the one everybody forgets),
4) the dead-reckoning consideration (if no help-win exists, however you
define win, the game is over).

The above information is both necessary and sufficient to determine the set
of all legal moves, in any position; therefore, the above information forms
a basis for the position.

Beyond this basis (the state of a position), there also exists some
attributes of a position...
For example, the counters (50-move counter, and 3-move repetition counter)
constitute an attribute of the position.
Alteration of these counters does not impact the the basis (or state) of
the position -- the attributes have no impact upon the set of legal move
possibilities in said position; they only have an impact upon the resulting
game outcome.

It is important to separate the aims and goals of a given chess game (or
problem), from the rules of legal movement, for said game.
And, the people who write the rules/Codex should know how to express these
rules from a fairy chess perspective (accounting for varying stipulations,
aims, goals, etc)...

With regard to the second point (castling rights), just consider how
orthodox chess skews the proper understanding:  in orthodox chess, castling
rights are reduced to a set of four information bits:
1) white has K-side castling rights?
2) white has Q-side castling rights?
3) black has K-side castling rights?
4) black has Q-side castling rights?
(each question can be answered by YES/NO, with the default being YES,
unless spoiled by retro-analysis).

But, the people who write the Orthodox Codex mistakenly believe that this
information is fundamental to a position, when it absolutely is not!
The programmers who develop a more encompassing representation (e.g.,
including Circe/Anticirce forms, wherein castling rights may be renewed
when units are reborn onto their game-array squares) must all appreciate
that the above 4-bits are a fiction; actually, 6-bits of information are
necessary to completely characterize castling rights in a position:
1) white King has castling rights?
2) white K-side Rook has castling rights?
3) white Q-side Rook has castling rights?
4) black King has castling rights?
5) black K-side Rook has castling rights?
6) black Q-side Rook has castling rights?

This example is just one reason (of many) that I've had to constantly
remind the orthocentric composers to return to the fundamental truths (and
establish sound definitions).
It is why I have advocated for a Fairy Codex, for years -- not only improve
the prospects for fairy chess, but also to clarify orthodox.
You really don't understand the rules of a language, until you encounter
the rules of other languages -- so it is with the rules of chess.

On Thu, May 15, 2014 at 3:23 AM, Guus Rol <grol33 at gmail.com> wrote:

> Hi Kevin,
> The concept I am referring to is that repetitions in chess games which do
> not genearate positions with the same options for the players (as in the
> example given) can still be considered "the same" by the FIDE laws. In our
> retro-conventions we are thereby justified doing the same thing. We may
> e.g. consider there is still a future possibility to castle - in judging
> the sameness of a position - even when we can't actually get there because
> of some automatic drawing convention interfering on the way. No two things
> in the universe are ever really the same and so it depends on the
> properties you wish to include in the comparison.
> On a more generalized level I think it is wise to postulate that
> no administrative condition (50M and repetitions, automatic and claimed)
> can be interpreted against another administrative rule - or a different
> instance of the same rule. They are "transparent" to one another. Example:
> you can't say that a position is not the same because we are now 47 moves
> away from the 50M mark instead of 49 moves. And you can't say a position is
> different because one move gives an automatic draw on the second instance
> and didn't on the first. Just to show that this issue is not limited to the
> subject of "future castling rights". The latter is merely a complex case.
> You make a good point about the "implicit" assumption that a diagram
> position occurs for the first time. IMHO this is an assumption which
> requires an explicit retro-convention. The reason is that the assumption
> can interfere with other conventional assumptions such as "castling right"
> and requires resolution by a retro-logic. This has been overlooked because
> the assumption was just a little bit too implicit. See my second post
> yesterday which is also on that subject.
> Guus Rol..
> On Wed, May 14, 2014 at 10:30 PM, Kevin Begley <kevinjbegley at gmail.com>wrote:
>> ps: perhaps we should encourage a retro competition (especially including
>> fairies), wherein the stipulation asks for 3-fold-repetition in n-moves
>> (for n < 3, which would obviously imply retro-content)
>> On Wed, May 14, 2014 at 1:26 PM, Kevin Begley <kevinjbegley at gmail.com>wrote:
>>> Guus,
>>> > "...we are left with the question on how to harmonize the
>>> original FIDE concept with the addition of automatic draws in the world of
>>> composition - still not considering castlings at all. I would suggest that
>>> to "continue to ignore possible terminations" is most in line with the FIDE
>>> concept. Yes, some repetitions do  change options for the players but so
>>> does the original FIDE law in real chess games..."
>>> This issue has already been harmonized, by the implicit presumption that
>>> such repetition is not inherent in the diagram, unless it can be proved by
>>> retrograde analysis.
>>> Several retro composers have even attempted to make good use of this
>>> presumption (most notably in studies wherein the solver must make use of
>>> this to either draw, or avoid draw); unfortunately, I can provide no good
>>> example (the concept is obviously very difficult to achieve, which might
>>> explain my having no recollection of an entirely successful rendition).
>>> Perhaps I am misunderstanding you, because I would have expected that
>>> this presumption was inherently obvious (otherwise, it would cast suspicion
>>> upon almost every #2 composition).
>>> Kevin.
>>> On Wed, May 14, 2014 at 12:30 PM, Guus Rol <grol33 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>> Starting with a puzzle followed by an introduction, the solution and an
>>>> explanation.
>>>> Make the followiing changes from PAS (initial game array): Remove Nb8,
>>>> move Pe2 to e4, move Bf1 to h5 and  Ng8 to f6. This is an SPG in 4.0 moves
>>>> but it is not unique. How many legal  forward moves do you need to play
>>>> forward at least to make sure that the first 4 moves in the game are unique
>>>> (then)?
>>>> This puzzle shows many different aspects of the issues discussed. It
>>>> also adds a new one: retro-logics. Whenever you do anything in
>>>> retro-solving which moves both froward and backward in time, you need a
>>>> supporting retro-logic, either implicitly or explicitly. The interaction
>>>> between the FIDE laws and the retro-logics is more complex than between the
>>>> Laws and the basic retro-conventions. Naturally,since the conventions are
>>>> required input for the logics to function besides other concepts.
>>>> Note: I hope to discuss some other day why I think that retro-logics
>>>> and conventions should be separated. It doesn't matter for the current
>>>> story that you subscribe to that view or not.
>>>> One of the things the solution shows are the two different
>>>> relationships between repetition and castling:
>>>> 1. The dependency relationship dictated by the laws and conventions.
>>>> Repetition may be dependent on castling right but not in reverse.
>>>> 2. The (retro-)logical relationship between repetition and castling
>>>> right. Here the choice of forward moves may decide on either a past with
>>>> (loss of) castling rights or a drawing repetition. The context is usually
>>>> one of retro-strategic logic.
>>>> You can imagine that combining a retro-logic for trying to decide
>>>> missing information from the past with a dynamic chess Law trying to look
>>>> into an uncertain future from that past, at times produces quirky results.
>>>> And so, besides solving the puzzle, I wil make a detour into Jumanji with
>>>> the idea of "dynamic castling rights".
>>>> Solution to the puzzle:
>>>> Play forward: 5. Be2 Ng8 6. Bh5 Nf6 7. Be2 Ng8 The next white moves are
>>>> not unique, the blacks are e.g. 8.Nc3 Rb8 9.Nb1 Ra8.
>>>> By convention, the new position is not a draw unless a repetition draw
>>>> can be proved. Such is not the case and we therefore have no draw here.
>>>> From that information you can derive only 1 proof game without
>>>> drawing repetitions: 1. Pe4 Na6 2. Bxa6 Nf6 3. Be2 Rg8 4. Bh5 Rh8. You can
>>>> see that the eighth and ninth black move Rb8 and Ra8 demonstrate the type-1
>>>> relationship (castling rights must have been lost there) and 7...Ng8 shows
>>>> the type-2 relationship. Before that move, black could have had both
>>>> castling rights, after it, one was lost. This shows the common paradoxical
>>>> scene of losing castling right without ever moving King or Rook. Well, what
>>>> you really lost, was just a "past". Happens all the time in retro-chess!
>>>> Now to Jumanji. Suppose move 8 and 9 were not played in that game.
>>>> Notice that before 7...Ng8 black had both future castling rights and after
>>>> it he lost 1 - not to say which but that doesn't matter. Lets now play 8.
>>>> Bh5 Nf6 again reaching the same position for the 3rd time. According to the
>>>> "future castling law", the position is not the same as the previous times
>>>> when there were still both future castling rights/occasions. In reality, by
>>>> standard proof game assessment, the position is an unnegotiable draw at
>>>> this point. Welcome to the Zoo!
>>>> Explanation. The confusion comes from mixing retro-strategy and
>>>> retro-analysis. Whenever the term "future" is used one reaches - almost
>>>> unconciously - for what seems the appropriate retro-logic. Since there is
>>>> no framework for handling repetitions in prA or retro-variants one resorts
>>>> to the natural choice that is always available - retro strategy. But
>>>> retro-strategy can eliminate roads into the past and thereby narrow down
>>>> your (retro) options. Static definitions only refer to past proof games and
>>>> need not take data from an ambiguous future. In this case, the proper
>>>> retro-analyst arrives at the same conclusion Valery did in his example: a
>>>> castling right was already lost by move 4 in all remaining proof games - as
>>>> seen in retrospect after move 9.
>>>> Well, I never said it is impossible to operate on dynamic rights, only
>>>> that it requires an I.Q. of 280 plus a winning lottery ticket. Proves that
>>>> you can manage the future.
>>>> Guus Rol..
>>>> On Wed, May 14, 2014 at 6:47 PM, Guus Rol <grol33 at gmail.com> wrote:
>>>>> Hi Joost and Valery,
>>>>> The way I see it there is a pre-issue to the discussion. The FIDE-laws
>>>>> do not know of any automatic draws. Even in the simple case without past or
>>>>> future "castling rights", FIDE must have considered that "possible moves"
>>>>> would not change across 50M boundaries or repetitions within repetition
>>>>> cycles. None of those enforce draws or close gateways even when the options
>>>>> for the players do change - i.e. the right to claim. Chess players
>>>>> though, are keenly aware of the risks in repeating positions. You might say
>>>>> that when the board looks the same for the FIDE laws, it looks quite
>>>>> different for the players. Example: Ke4-e5-e6-e5-e4 (mimicked by the
>>>>> opponent) not only switches back but also spoils the game if Ke5 is now the
>>>>> only move to win it!
>>>>> Which means that we are left with the question on how to harmonize the
>>>>> original FIDE concept with the addition of automatic draws in the world of
>>>>> composition - still not considering castlings at all. I would suggest that
>>>>> to "continue to ignore possible terminations" is most in line with the FIDE
>>>>> concept. Yes, some repetitions do  change options for the players but so
>>>>> does the original FIDE law in real chess games - see example above. In
>>>>> fact, by down-playing the relevance of future developments in the
>>>>> conversion from play to composition, we also take the first step towards a
>>>>> static view on repetitions altogether. Do we need more then to justify the
>>>>> application of static castling rights in repetitions as well?
>>>>> Guus Rol
>>>>> On Wed, May 14, 2014 at 4:59 PM, Retros Probleemblad <
>>>>> retro at probleemblad.nl> wrote:
>>>>>> On 05/14/2014 03:50 PM, Valery Liskovets wrote:
>>>>>>> Joost,
>>>>>>> In my example, looking in the past, we have enough time for 4
>>>>>>> repetitions.
>>>>>>> But are they (more exactly, should the Rules be such that they are)
>>>>>>> all
>>>>>>> identical in both twins? I see no way to pose this question via a
>>>>>>> problem
>>>>>>> with an ordinary stipulation (unless I overlook anything). As far as
>>>>>>> I know
>>>>>>> Nikita Plaksin has never discussed this (modern, future-depending)
>>>>>>> collision:
>>>>>>> is castling _practically_ executable or not? And his corresponding
>>>>>>> problems
>>>>>>> didn't depend on such nuances of the 3-rep. rule. But maybe any of
>>>>>>> them
>>>>>>> can be reinterpreted in such framework?
>>>>>> Valeri,
>>>>>> Although the question is different, the underlying theme is the same:
>>>>>> Is castling allowed if it can be proven that, by castling (or in your case:
>>>>>> by making it possible to castle), more than 100 single moves without
>>>>>> capture, pawn move or castling have occurred?
>>>>>> Your example could be changed to something even more extreme by the
>>>>>> way:
>>>>>> Ke1 Rh1 Sa1 // Ke8 Ph2
>>>>>> No captures/pawn moves for 46 full moves. How many times can the
>>>>>> sequence Sb3 Ke7 Sa1 Ke8 be repeated until there is a correct claim for
>>>>>> 3-fold repetition.
>>>>>> Can white really lose his castling rights by moving a piece besides
>>>>>> the rook and king?
>>>>>> Joost
>>>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>>>> Retros mailing list
>>>>>> Retros at janko.at
>>>>>> http://www.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/retros
>>>> _______________________________________________
>>>> Retros mailing list
>>>> Retros at janko.at
>>>> http://www.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/retros
>> _______________________________________________
>> Retros mailing list
>> Retros at janko.at
>> http://www.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/retros
> _______________________________________________
> Retros mailing list
> Retros at janko.at
> http://www.pairlist.net/mailman/listinfo/retros
-------------- next part --------------
An HTML attachment was scrubbed...
URL: <http://one.pairlist.net/pipermail/retros/attachments/20140515/7d07389f/attachment-0001.html>

More information about the Retros mailing list