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Author Topic: Entering SMIRF 8x8 + 10x8 Chess Program  (Read 47224 times)
Smirf
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« Reply #25 on: May 09, 2006, 03:10:59 AM »

Hi Martin, all the best to you and Australia (just heared about a mining rescue wonder)! I just had started your chess playing program. It is fine that its GUI is fully resizable, a feature still missing in SMIRF. How to use it exactly, still is not quite clear to me. Probably there have to be other participants. Also my firewall seems to be an obstacle. Good progress to your project! Reinhard.
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martyjn
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« Reply #26 on: May 09, 2006, 04:09:55 AM »

Yeh it is only for two player connection and most firewalls to stop it its one of the obsticles that i have to overcome.It can be played on a single machine by opening two coppies going Socket->Server on one then Socket->Client on the other and using LocalHost as the server name on the client (this is the loopback adress).This is the way i test it.It is only usable inside a firewall that can be disabled.It will also work on a Lan that uses Tcp/ip.
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Smirf
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« Reply #27 on: May 16, 2006, 02:19:47 AM »

Hi SMIRF fans!

Now when there is also a German language update 2 to Borland Developer Studio 2006, I have placed a newly improved and recompiled beta version of SMIRF Chess at my site.

Regards, Reinhard.
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Smirf
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« Reply #28 on: July 04, 2006, 01:09:15 AM »

Hi, Chess960 and 10x8 Chess fans,

today I have placed a newly improved chess engine for download at my site.

Moreover I try to finish translations of added documents into English language.

Regards, Reinhard.
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marcsl
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« Reply #29 on: July 13, 2006, 11:35:35 AM »

Hello Reinhard,

I've had a chance to play SMIRF, what a terrific chess program.
I liked it, and on my first game I beat the computer, wow that
made me feel very proud. (at least for a little while, I'm not
usually very good at chess).
Here is how the game ended I was white.

 

Blacks king had no where to go!

Now there are just two issues about the program,
why the need two have to keep going into the help
menu to press "keep testing"? is that a necessity?

Also the screen does blink, it's not a real big deal,
but after awhile it does become a distraction.

It looks like you are drawing the image on a bitmap,
or are you using a TPaintBox at all?
If you are creating it on a Bitmap and then drawing it
to the form canvas, I don't see why it should blink. hmm...

But these are minor issues the game is very enjoyable, it's a
great chess program.  good work.
Regards,
Marc 
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marcsl
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« Reply #30 on: July 13, 2006, 12:33:11 PM »

Reinhard,

One last request, (I forgot to include on the last post, I know I'm getting greedy cheesy)
How about a captured pieces list...that would be a very nice feature.
just a suggestion, thanks,
Marc
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Smirf
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« Reply #31 on: July 13, 2006, 12:50:22 PM »

Quote from: Marc
I've had a chance to play SMIRF, what a terrific chess program.
I liked it, and on my first game I beat the computer, wow that
made me feel very proud. (at least for a little while, I'm not
usually very good at chess).
Congratulations! You must be an expert!
Quote from: Marc
Now there are just two issues about the program,
why the need two have to keep going into the help
menu to press "keep testing"? is that a necessity?
If the program is asking you this, there is a reason for it. The Donationware version itself has its keys included. Thus there is no need to insert any different access key. And so that message would never come. But there is an additional improved engine for real donators. They will get a different necessary personal key set sent if they want to use the bonus engine.
If you get the "keep testing?" message, something has gone wrong, e.g. you have installed into an old existing version's folder, what should be avoided. Then Smirf is answering (badly) immediately - nearly without any thinking at all.
Quote from: Marc
Also the screen does blink, it's not a real big deal,
but after awhile it does become a distraction.
Same reason like stated above. Simply install SMIRF into a NEW folder. It should work correctly then (32 Bit Windows only).
Quote from: Marc
It looks like you are drawing the image on a bitmap,
or are you using a TPaintBox at all?
If you are creating it on a Bitmap and then drawing it
to the form canvas, I don't see why it should blink. hmm...
Already earlier I have answered to that question. The picture already is buffered. Thus I do not understand that effect.
Quote from: Marc
But these are minor issues the game is very enjoyable, it's a
great chess program.  good work.
SMIRF will be contiunously improved from time to time. Actually it is not yet able to become the 8x8 world champion, may be in 10x8. Simply install SMIRF correctly and you will have even more fun!

Regards, Reinhard.
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Smirf
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« Reply #32 on: July 13, 2006, 12:58:22 PM »

Quote from: Marc
One last request, (I forgot to include on the last post, I know I'm getting greedy )
How about a captured pieces list...that would be a very nice feature.
This feature is planned, a place for it already is prepared. Simply wait some time ...
(I intend to list only different captured pieces.)

Regards, Reinhard.
« Last Edit: July 13, 2006, 01:00:50 PM by Smirf » Logged
Defenestration
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« Reply #33 on: July 16, 2006, 02:28:07 PM »

I don't want to cause any trouble for Rheinhard, but I'm wondering how SMIRF qualifies for entry. I ask because the rules state (I've added emphasis for the bit in question):

Quote
You may submit programs you have worked on prior to the contest start date, but you may not submit software that has been previously made publicly available. You are free to collaborate with others and enter as a team. Users are free to submit multiple programs/components.

Does this mean that apps which have previously been released to the public CAN be submitted ?

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mouser
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« Reply #34 on: July 16, 2006, 02:36:32 PM »

your concern is valid Defenestration, however,
my memory is that smirf came by soon after the contest started and smirf wasn't really available to the public at that point.  only after he had entered it did he make it available to the public on his page, so that's still ok.

clearly smirf is a giant project that he's been working on for a while, but since it wasnt public before the contest it seems a valid entry to me.  that's my understanding but smirf can fill us in. 

for example see this post above from april, which is when i think he made a download available:
Quote
Now an always actual SMIRF download (1.7 MB) could be found at my page: http://www.chessbox.de/Compu/schachsmirf_e.html
« Last Edit: July 16, 2006, 02:38:10 PM by mouser » Logged
Defenestration
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« Reply #35 on: July 16, 2006, 02:40:54 PM »

Ah, OK. I thought it had been available for a few years. My mistake.

BTW, great program Rheinhard! Thmbsup
« Last Edit: July 16, 2006, 02:43:55 PM by Defenestration » Logged
mouser
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« Reply #36 on: July 16, 2006, 02:51:55 PM »

we'll have to wait for smirf to tell us for sure, since it's clear that he's been working on smirf for years..  if it turns out that smirf has been available to the public for a long time and can't be entereed, it's still a wonderful program  thumbs up
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Smirf
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« Reply #37 on: July 16, 2006, 06:24:51 PM »

Well, before this contest early versions of SMIRF indeed had been available for some few counted beta testers. Therefore SMIRF initially had been intended to be shareware and had not been free at all before this contest - according to that. Instead there had been some RESTRICTED test versions with EXPIRING time limited key sets. Today such an old copy of SMIRF merely would be showing its basic functionality by answering immediately, instead of calculating any amount of time, and by repeatedly showing a nagging window.

Whereas current SMIRF now is released as a donationware, thus it is including a NON EXPIRING PERMANENT key set. Therefore that will work EVER (if installed within a new folder using a current Windows 32 Bit OS).

But because of missing donations (I counted only three) it still is unsure, whether the SMIRF development later then would be continued as a donationware project or not. Actually SMIRF repeatedly has been updated as donationware, assiduously hoping for better acceptance. Seriously donating SMIRF fans also could ask for a different personal key set, which then enables them the use of an additionally replacing downloadable second highly tuned SMIRF engine DLL, which is a separate bonus and no donationware but also using the donationware GUI.

I hope to have sufficiently explained here SMIRF's distribution concept as a donationware. If that would be in conflict with the rules of the running contest, please let me know soon. That case SMIRF's entering then would be taken back immediately.

Best regards, Reinhard.
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Smirf
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« Reply #38 on: July 16, 2006, 06:52:58 PM »

A renewed SMIRF engine has been released now. Download is possible from my web site as usual.

Regards, Reinhard.
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Carol Haynes
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« Reply #39 on: July 16, 2006, 07:28:05 PM »

I have just downloaded the latest build of SMIRF and installed it for the first time. Every time I start the program or try to start a new game it goes to a page asking for license keys (all the fields are blank on the license key page).

You said above that new users should not see this page as license keys are included???

If I try to start a new program and click on "Continue to test" it ignores any options I chose when starting a new game and just seems to load the default game set up.

How do I get the program to work properly?

Looks very nice by the way.
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mouser
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« Reply #40 on: July 16, 2006, 10:29:59 PM »

sounds like SMIRF is a valid and fine entry in the contest to me.  thumbs up

note also that i have clarified the contest guidelines to make clear that you can make your entries into proper shareware at a later version if you like.

it's very hard to get donations for software (it's not so easy to get people to buy your software either sometimes!) - you really have to ask people seriously or they won't event consider it.

[ read my long article about some of these issues here: http://www.donationcoder....m/Articles/One/index.html ]


ps. Reinhard - I agree with carol that it's confusing to figure out what to do when it asks for a license key.  maybe you could make this simpler?
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Smirf
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« Reply #41 on: July 17, 2006, 01:17:45 AM »

Quote from: mouser
sounds like SMIRF is a valid and fine entry in the contest to me.
Great to read this!

Quote from: mouser
ps. Reinhard - I agree with carol that it's confusing to figure out what to do when it asks for a license key.  maybe you could make this simpler?
Normally (correctly installed) SMIRF will never ask for keys. Nevertheless I will think it over how to handle conflicts when installed over earlier limited beta versions, which moreover have had a different installation folder name. Thus reported conflicts could be generated only "by intention".

Regards, Reinhard.
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Carol Haynes
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« Reply #42 on: July 17, 2006, 06:11:18 AM »

Normally (correctly installed) SMIRF will never ask for keys. Nevertheless I will think it over how to handle conflicts when installed over earlier limited beta versions, which moreover have had a different installation folder name. Thus reported conflicts could be generated only "by intention".

Strange - I have never installed an earlier version and I just ran the installer to install.

How do I 'correctly' install the program to avoid the 'missing keys' problem?
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Smirf
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« Reply #43 on: July 17, 2006, 12:19:00 PM »

Quote from: Carol Haynes
Strange - I have never installed an earlier version and I just ran the installer to install.

Thank you for sending a feed back to that problem! I have discussed the only one error case I have been able to cause myself. If there are other cases, I need help and details from those having that problems, but also from those who have none. SMIRF as donationware is intended to run under a recent 32 Bit Windows OS definitely without any need for special keys.

first (if having any problem):
1) uninstall every installed SMIRF
2) delete the ChessBox folder (in your program files directory)
3) clean install the current SMIRF version by starting "SmNewSetup.exe"

then report:
a) which OS has been used?
b) which SMIRF version is shown? (menu -> help -> about ...)
c) what is the engine's version (shown in SMIRF's caption)
d) has any SMIRF version been installed ever before?
e) is SMIRF executed within its installation folder as the default directory?
f) what in your opinion is wrong or ok?

finally (if SMIRF still is requesting a key set) try following license keys:
User:    Donationware Version - donate !
GUI:     5e1df0d6 58658371
Engine: 342f6f5e 026b3179

Thank you for your cooperation!

Regards, Reinhard.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2006, 12:30:48 PM by Smirf » Logged
Carol Haynes
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« Reply #44 on: July 17, 2006, 01:19:05 PM »

Quote from: Carol Haynes
Strange - I have never installed an earlier version and I just ran the installer to install.

Thank you for sending a feed back to that problem! I have discussed the only one error case I have been able to cause myself. If there are other cases, I need help and details from those having that problems, but also from those who have none. SMIRF as donationware is intended to run under a recent 32 Bit Windows OS definitely without any need for special keys.

first (if having any problem):
1) uninstall every installed SMIRF
2) delete the ChessBox folder (in your program files directory)
3) clean install the current SMIRF version by starting "SmNewSetup.exe"


Did all of those because there was no installation to remove.

Quote

then report:
a) which OS has been used?

Windows XP SP2

Quote
b) which SMIRF version is shown? (menu -> help -> about ...)

1.4.0 - 304 beta

Strange because the version I donwloaded (yesterday) said it was BC-163c (the link under the paypal icon)

Quote
c) what is the engine's version (shown in SMIRF's caption)

163c

Quote
d) has any SMIRF version been installed ever before?

No

Quote
e) is SMIRF executed within its installation folder as the default directory?

I presume so - it is from the desktop shortcut installed by the installer.

"C:\Program Files\ChessBox\Smirf-Don-BDS\SmirfGUI.exe"

Quote
f) what in your opinion is wrong or ok?

Don't know - the keys fields are clear and each time I start the program or start a new game it asks for keys to be entered.

Quote
finally (if SMIRF still is requesting a key set) try following license keys:
User:    Donationware Version - donate !
GUI:     5e1df0d6 58658371
Engine: 342f6f5e 026b3179

Those keys seem to solve the problem.
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Smirf
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« Reply #45 on: July 17, 2006, 02:49:49 PM »

Quote from: Carol Haynes
Those keys seem to solve the problem.

Again, thank you for your report and the efforts made!

Those general donationware keys you have inserted manually at last should have been already present after the installation, which obviously has not been successful. So I have to investigate, why several installation tests here have been successful and failed at your computer. Knowing that there has no prior SMIRF installation turns me into a different direction. Thus I hope to become able now to identify the problem here and to reproduce that failure locally.

Regards, Reinhard.

P.S.: Indeed there are TWO different version idents, because SMIRF consists of two seperated parts: GUI and Engine.
« Last Edit: July 17, 2006, 02:53:53 PM by Smirf » Logged
Carol Haynes
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« Reply #46 on: July 17, 2006, 03:33:23 PM »

Thanks Reinhard
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Smirf
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« Reply #47 on: July 17, 2006, 05:27:57 PM »

Hello all, it would be interesting to know, whether there have been also some successful SMIRF installations. Please share your experiences. Thank you!

Reinhard.
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mouser
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« Reply #48 on: July 17, 2006, 05:30:46 PM »

i had same experience as carol - it was asking for license key.
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Smirf
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« Reply #49 on: July 18, 2006, 11:57:28 AM »

The good news is, that I have worked out the general reason of that strange behaviour, and, that SMIRF is running also under new MS Vista 64 Bit beta (as 32 Bit application). It seems as if SMIRF sometimes would need special rights to change its INI file by conventional methods. But I do not know, how to establish such rights during an installation. Any advice for that would be very welcomed!

Regards, Reinhard.
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