By the way, in refutation of GIGO (garbage in - garbage out) and "Computers don't make mistakes; people do," I once had an early portable electronic chess game, Boris 2.5 if I remember correctly. Yes, please go here
; first release was February 1978, which seems about the time I got mine.
From Day One as a proud Boris-owner, I was so much 'in love' with it; the sight of it in the wiki article pic brings back a flood of memories and emotions (picture me as a young Boris chess 'emo').
But then cold hard reality began to set in. Boris was ruthless; I could almost never beat it at anything Level 1 or above, and it was programmed to insult you mercilessly when you made what it considered a 'dumb move'; such as "Have you played before?" and "Really?" and about 8 or 10 other equally devastating one-liners.
One day, I swallowed my pride and set it to play at Level Zero; and wonder of wonders, I actually began to make winning moves, until; it cheated
. True story! Playing it at Level Zero, it lost it's Queen, and as I was about to move in for the kill, it gave itself another Queen, as a freebie
. And it's new Queen didn't appear on any of the squares where Pawns normally change into Queens; it's new Queen appeared in a 'winning position' somewhere in the middle of the board. 'I felt the earth move under my feet', as the song goes. I was mentally staggered by the implications. GIGO was toast! The computer cheated on Level Zero! Even to think back on it; I'm not sure I ever completely calmed down, even to this day. A - computer - cheated; at chess. Somewhere within my Boris 2.5 was a hideous cyber-monster. True story. It finally wore out and quit working. Actually, looking back on it, I can see an element of 'humor' in it, if I put myself in the position of laughing--at myself, combined with a 'wake-up' groan, as in 'Welcome to the real world, you pathetic nerd'.
edit... Hindsight can be an amazing enlightener; after all these years, looking back after having just written this post; a suspicion has come to me that the early Boris 2.5 computer could not possibly have cheated at Level Zero without someone having rigged it with sneaky programming to act that way. If so, and it's the only explanation that makes any sense now, the phenomenon must have long since been reported by others, tested, proven out (authenticated & verified independently) and very quietly corrected -all on the hush-hush- in later models. The 'proof' would have to come from searching out an early edition model Boris 2.5 that is in vintage condition, the equivalent of a 'like new' classic car 'barn find' (in this case; more like 'attic find') and played at Level Zero.
Other than that, all you have is my word as a foggy-headed 800 to 1000 human chess playing strength level (rank amateur) that my early edition Boris 2.5 actually did cheat and also gave insults, and that if mine did, others of the same vintage must have done so also. IOW, somewhere in the heart of every early model Boris 2.5 lurked hidden nonstandard coding to cheat at Level Zero and give itself a free Queen in a winning position, while heaping choice insults upon hapless amateur-level players. If anyone wishes to scorn my allegations and heap on top of me yet more insults, save your breath; I've already been insulted by a pro (at which I still marvel), and I specialize now at rating insults (rating
insults, I say; not giving them) instead of rating chess players and chess computers.