Kasparov Vs Deep Blue

(The Man against the Machine)

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In a shocking finale that lasted barely more than an hour, World Champion Garry Kasparov resigned 19 moves into Game 6, handing a historic victory to Deep Blue.

The win gave the IBM supercomputer a 3.5-2.5 victory in the six-game rematch. It was the first time a current world champion has lost a match to a computer opponent under tournament conditions.

"What we just witnessed was a landmark achievement in chess," said match commentator Yasser Seirawan. "All I can say is that I'm stunned. I absolutely didn't expect this to happen."

Kasparov, who afterward admitted he was in a poor frame of mind entering Game 6, fell into a well-known trap that has been established as a bad line to follow. According to commentators covering the match, it was almost inconceivable that someone of Kasparov's ability could allow this to happen.

It appeared that the pressure of the past five games had taken its toll on Kasparov. His disastrous mistake early in the game was certainly uncharacteristic of a man generally considered to be the greatest player in the history, and Kasparov's early resignation was a sign that he'd lost his will to fight. "For me, the match was over yesterday," he said. "I had no real strength left to fight. And today's win by Deep Blue was justified."

Game 6 began with a very quiet, positional-based opening, the Caro-Kann. Unlike in four of the previous five games, Kasparov, playing black, began with a "real" opening – one that wasn't specifically improvised to throw off Deep Blue -- but he then developed it into a losing variation.

Based on this beginning, the commentators predicted a strategic battle. Said Seirawan, "This is also a very solid set up for black."

That forecast quickly went out the window after Kasparov's seventh move, when Deep Blue sacrificed a knight for a pawn, costing Kasparov the ability to castle. At this point, Kasparov's disposition changed dramatically. "Kasparov has a look of terror on his face," said Seirawan. "He's showing his disbelief by falling for a well-known opening trap." The error provided Deep Blue with a highly advantageous position and marked the beginning of the end for Kasparov.

After the game, Deep Blue development team leader C.J. Tan expressed satisfaction with the result. He also pointed out that there was more to Deep Blue's battle with Garry Kasparov than just a game of chess. "We are very proud to have played a role in this historic event," he said. "This will benefit everyone -- from the audience to school children, to businesses everywhere, even to Garry Kasparov."

Kasparov, who on several occasions expressed unhappiness with the ground rules of the six-game rematch, challenged Deep Blue to a showdown under regular tournament conditions. "The match was lost by the world champion," he said, "but there are very good and very profound reasons for this. I think the competition has just started. This is just the beginning."

The Deep Blue development team took home the $700,000 first prize, while Kasparov received $400,000.


History of Man Vs Machine

  1. Kasparov beats Deep Blue easily. 1996.
  2. Kaparov loses to Deep Blue barely. 1997
  3. Computer is disassembled and does not accept any re-matches.
  4. An ordinary PC using the software "Deep Junior" ties Kasparov in a 6 game match. 2003.


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