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The use of openings books

The openings book used by a program that participates in the WCCC should be composed by one of the team members. If the participant wishes to use an openings book not composed by one of the team members, the participant is obliged to inform the Tournament Director by a written consent by the original composer(s) of the openings book on their approval to use it in the WCCC. If there is no written consent the book may NOT be used in the WCCC. We remark that slight adaptations to the book do not have any effect on the original authorship.


On the one hand the ICGA allows endgame databases to be used that are not the original work of the programming teams. On this basis it could be argued that we should also allow openings books.

However, there is an important difference to be explained below. An endgame database contains the (presumed) absolute truth about all the positions in that database, and these truths have no creative input from the person(s) who compiled the database. In contrast, an openings book has a large amount of creative input, e.g., in the selection of which variations should be played, with whatever frequencies, and possibly with moves that have not been played in master chess but which have been found by the book creator. So, it can be argued that an openings book is quite different from an endgame database. The ICGA therefore rules that an openings book can only be allowed to be used by a participant if the person who composed the openings book agrees.

2008-09-15 08:06:48, Beijing