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Chess for Kids (and dummies like dads)

> if you haven't already tried it, visit sf.net and plug 'chess' into the
> search window.  it will probably return a bunch of programs, including some
> which are java based.

Thanks. I'll try that out.

> fwiw, i thought that gnuchess had level settings.  are you certain that
> even level 1 is too difficult for your needs?

That could be part of the problem. There are no generalized level 
settings for the chess engines I've found. Apparently, computer chess is 
quite the discipline, involving plies and nodes and hash tables and who 
knows what else. As best I can understand, the most I can do to weaken 
the engine is to restrict the amount of time it has to think over moves 
and the search depth it is allowed to consider. In xboard, I've set 
pondering off (so the engine doesn't think when it's not its turn), 
forced the engine to move after only 1 second of consideration (the 
minimum time), and restricted the depth to 1 ply or node or whatever. 
Even doing all that, gnuchess and crafty are much stronger than that old 
MacChess program I talked about. If there's more I can do to make them 
more kid-friendly, I'm all ears.


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