> The recent thread about weaknesses of Jellyfish got
I'm glad to see you are setting your sights high!
In this forum I have lately been sounding off against blind
However, I do not have a negative opinion of JF as a player.
Back to the JF-as-player issue: you will find that there is not
> The basic idea is temporal difference training, as withThis is a promising approach, which I believe has been used by
> all the neural-net programs I know of. The big difference
> is that I'm doing a "parasite driven" pool of starting
> positions. What that means is that rather than just doing
> training games from the initial position, I have a collection
> of positions I train from. This collection evolves over
> time, with the fitness criterion being the difference of
> 1ply look ahead eval and static eval.
other backgammon developers. (Tom Keith uses a similar pattern
to develop Motif, for instance.)
There are a couple of things you should watch out for. I offer
First, straight TD training, as described by Sutton, is about 20
Second, training is non-stationary. That is: as your evaluation
Third, straight TD from no initial knowledge has proven to be
Fourth, there is a condition attached to the sufficiency of TD:
> right now NN programs seem to have trouble with backgamesThis is a promising theory, but isn't there an alternative
> and outfield primes. Why? Well, the earlier training teaches
> them to play in such a way as to avoid having that many men
> back, so they rarely get into such a situation. Even when they
> do, they play it badly and don't learn the right things.
explanation? JF might not have the positional features it needs
to play such situations tactically well. For instance, does it
have a pattern for slotting the back of a prime? What about
a pattern for bringing checkers to bear on escape points? What
about rules for when it should split an anchor in a backgame?
If a neural network is missing an essential piece of positional
Also, I recall that Tesauro had a trick for inducing TD-Gammon to
OK, that does it. I am looking forward to the fruits of your research,
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