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Re: [Bug-gnubg] Dice Rolls

From: JD
Subject: Re: [Bug-gnubg] Dice Rolls
Date: Sat, 17 Aug 2013 08:22:43 -0600
User-agent: Mozilla/5.0 (X11; Linux x86_64; rv:17.0) Gecko/20130625 Thunderbird/17.0.7

Hi Max,
I was not playing against the automated bot.
I was playing human against human, and I was playing both players.


On 08/17/2013 02:59 AM, Massimiliano Maini wrote:
JD, you have the source code of gnubg so you can check for yourself the code does not cheat, You can of course compile it yourself to be sure that the precompiled binaries provided do not use tweaked code.

Big waste of time in my opinion, as in the end you'll probably still lose a lot against gnubg and you'll still have the impression he's cheating. But that is of course not the case: the sooner you realise it, the sooner you'll start focusing on improving your game.

Another thing you can do is to try other BG software (e.g. XtremeGammon). But once again the end result will not change:
XG is at least as strong as gnubg (actually a bit stronger), hence ...


On 17 August 2013 06:11, JD <address@hidden <mailto:address@hidden>> wrote:

    On 08/16/2013 09:59 PM, Russ Allbery wrote:

        JD <address@hidden <mailto:address@hidden>> writes:

            While you can do a statistical study of the randomness of
            dice rolls, it
            does not take into account that the engine can see current
            board, and
            determine that it (the gnubg pseudo-player, which is also
            me - since I
            selected human against human, and player 0's default name
            is gnubg). I
            find it very strange that in 4 out of 5 games, where I was
            playing both
            as player 0 and player 1, with player 0 being gnubg, the
            rolls for gnubg
            were incredibly winner rolls - totally amazing to me.
            So, I was not playing against the bot, as you say. I was
            playing human
            against human, and I did not enable the "Dice
            Manupulation" option at
            But I can tell you in all honesty that I was doing my best
            for each roll
            of the dice for both players (0, and 1).

        The problem, in a nutshell, is that your sample size is much
        too small.

        Humans (all humans) have a very bad intuition for randomness.
         We expect
        it to be more uniform than it actually is, when in reality
        it's quite
        clumpy and prone to long patterns of behavior that we think of
        as not
        random.  This is why, for example, many slot machine players will
        absolutely swear that there is such a thing as hot and cold
        machines, or
        that a machine is "ready" to pay out, when under the hood the slot
        machines have government-certified mathematical random number
        that don't care in the slightest about whether they've paid
        off recently
        or not.

        We're very, very good at finding patterns.  It's what our
        brains are
        adapted to do.  We therefore find patterns even when they
        don't exist,
        possibly since (evolutionarily) it's a survival characteristic
        to err on
        the side of seeing patterns (e.g., predators) where they don't
        instead of erring on the side of missing patterns that do exist.

        In any event, five games is far, far too few to tell you
        anything of
        substance (as you alluded to in your earlier message).  You'd
        need to do a
        more systematic and recorded study across more like 100 games,
        with some
        sort of objective criteria, to be sure that the pattern is

    Yes, correct.
    All I am saying is that TO ME, it is sufficiently significant, because
    I will certainly NOT be playing millions or billions of games and note
    the rolls for each given board state.
    Up to now (as of typing this message), I have played about 10 games,
    and out pf 10 games, of 7 points each, I won only one game, even then,
    marginally. I lost 9 games, and each one with a huge disadvantage in
    the number of my pieces remaining on the board.
    Certainly, I did not set out to lose to myself.
    I would have hoped that the engine would not suddenly roll dice that
    would provide doubles to player 0 in the most amazingly opportune
    to to roll dice that would hit my piece exactly when it became
    NO such dice would roll for player 1. NONE!!!!
    In 10 games, each game with 5 or 7 points.

    I am sorry, this may not be statistically significant to
    It is extremely significant to me, as I do not have the time to put in
    100,000,000 games.

    Best regards,


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