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Subject: GNUGo Rankings at various levels? rss

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Zach Hoekstra
United States
Fort Collins
Colorado
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So I've been a long-time admirer of Go, but I've never been able to play seriously. I never figured out my own rank, but figured it out to be somewhere around 25k. Recently,however, I've found GNUGo, and started playing against it. After some work, and study, I've managed to lose by only half a point on a 19x19 with the program playing at level 0, a 9 stone handicap, and a half-point komi. Frankly, this was a huge success for me, as GNUGo has forced me to examine very carefully the state of my shapes, and still manages to take some groups I had thought perfectly safe.
My question is... can I claim a certain ranking based on my experiences with the game? Or is playing GNUGo at the beginning level a poor excuse for playing with human players of equivalent rank?

For those who didnt want to read the above paragraph... do you know the rankings of GNUGo at different levels? I know level 10 is approx. 7k-8k, but I find no documentation of ranking at lower levels.
 
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Kory Stevens
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I do not know the strength of GNUGo, but I just decided to post to warn you that even when you do find out its level, it will probably be an overestimation of your level. A computer opponent's strength is a fine estimation for a single game, but many go programs suffer from the weakness of always making the same errors. Once you learn to capitalize on those errors, you will perform quite a bit above your own level, I've seen discrepancies of as much as 10 stones of strength made this way.

I suppose what I'm actually saying is that if you want to know how strong you are, you would be best to play humans. I suggest that you try out KGS, but there are many good places you can play online. Many people will even be willing to review games with you if you ask them and then you can learn quite a bit. A simple game also really does not take much time, don't worry about how long it will take, I think you'll find playing people is a much better experience (because people always find ways to make newer mistakes).
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Ramon Mercado
United States
Stafford
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You can play against various game engines, including GNUgo, at http://www.gokgs.com/. They are ranked according to the server's ranking system so that can give you an idea.
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