Category Archives: Houdini

Houdini3.0 vs Houdini2.0

I gave Houdini3.0 a try just to see what the fuss was about.

Observations
Houdini3.0 

  • is much better at memory management. I can run it with 2GB RAM and CB only freezes up momentarily when I enter a new variation. I had to run Houdini2.0 with 1GB RAM to limit the freezing up of CB.
  • is stronger in the one position I tested from the Xmas Open.

Karacsonyi,G (1514) – Yip,M (2075)

Philidor Wall[B07]
Xmas Open (4), 29.12.2012

Black to Play

32.Nd5+


Here I resigned(after 32.Nd5+) seeing that white will win a piece. 

Houdini2.0 had to go deeply into the line before seeing that black was slightly better. Houdini3.0 sees this right away and both programs made me feel silly for resigning.

Not scientific evidence but I am quite happy with Houdini3.0.
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Houdini 3 Now Released

The latest version is now out.

‘The new Houdini 3 contains many evaluation and search improvements in all phases of the game and is about 50 Elo stronger than its predecessor Houdini 2. The opening improvements are mostly related to piece activity and space management and are convincingly demonstrated by the progress in Fischer Random Chess for which Houdini 3 has become about 75 Elo stronger. In the middle game Houdini 3 has significant enhancements for recognizing pieces with limited mobility and in king-side safety. In end games Houdini 3 will seek deeper and solve more positions than before.

In the new Tactical Mode Houdini 3 will adapt its search strategy to prefer tactical solutions rather than positional moves in the root position. Some clever search tricks transform the engine into the most proficient tactical position solver ever. In tactical test suites the Tactical Mode will find more solutions and provide significantly faster solution times.

The Accelerated Principal Variation Search or “Smart Fail-High” is especially useful in very deep analysis when a different move becomes best at very high search depth. Houdini 3 will apply an automatic depth reduction that often speeds up finding the Principal Variation by a factor of 5 to 10.

Besides Nalimov and Gaviota End Game Table Bases, Houdini 3 now also supports Scorpio bitbases. These bitbases are loaded in memory when the program starts (requiring about 300 MB of memory) and are then readily available to the engine.

Hash usage has been optimized, improving back-tracking analysis. Houdini 3 Pro will now support hash tables up to 256 GB…More – Houdini

 

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