Tuesday, September 12, 2006

MorfikChess

Chess Features
This alpha-version chess application demonstrates the concept of 'browser as platform'. It can be played as a single player or a multi-player networked game.In the single player mode, it utilizes the first implementation of a JavaScript/AJAX Chess Engine running in your browser that calculates beyond 2-ply. This release, when set to its top level, searches a minimum of 5-ply ahead and continues indefinitely for particularly critical configurations. This is obviously not a demonstration of a Grandmaster-strength chess engine, which would probably require at least 12-ply, but a proof of concept application that demonstrates the 'browser as computing platform' concept.

In the multi-player network mode, you play via an application which is running in your browser, i.e. you initiate the browser chess game and invite your friend to join the game using their browser. If you download this game and run it from your local computer, you can play network chess in a peer-to-peer mode, which does not require a central server.
The purpose behind developing this application is to push the boundaries of what can conceivably be run within a browser. If you want to contribute to its development please feel free to do so. All the source code (currently in Object Pascal) is available online so jump in...
Enjoy it, Martin Roberts :)

Release Notes
Release 0.6This alpha release offers a much improved chess engine which features a more efficient heuristic algorithm, quiescent searching, as well as a more sophisticated evaluation function.

Release v0.5This alpha release resolves the JavaScript timing issues in browsers. The depth of search has also been increased to 4-ply. A few basic optimization modifications to the project have also been implemented.

Release v0.4 This alpha release has an inbuilt chess engine developed with WebOS AppsBuilder. This application is written using Object Pascal and is compiled into pure html and JavaScript so that it can run in the browser. This initial release is able to compute 2-ply ahead (1 full-move look-ahead). The code is not optimized yet nor is it the most efficient way of writing a chess engine.

Release v0.3This alpha release introduces the option of a single player mode, i.e. you play against the application running in the browser. The application uses a random move generator to create its responses to your moves.

Release v0.2This alpha release of the Morfik Chess program addresses the ability to have two people playing chess through a browser. The application runs in the browser, i.e. you initiate a browser chess game and invite your friend to join the game using her/his browser. There is no server involvement except to save the game should you wish to stop and come back to the game at a later time. As you will know the server methodology used by all other two player chess games places an inherent limit on the number of chess games that can be supported concurrently via the central server.

Obviously this limitation is removed with Morfik Chess as each instance runs in its own browser and has the full resources of the PC at its disposal (albeit through the browser).

Release v0.1This alpha release of the Morfik Chess program demonstrates the implementation of rich chess UI using AJAX and concentrates on:

- chess board layout - animation of the opponent's pieces;

- drag-and-drop moving;

- visual indications of all legal moves for each piece; - PDF output of game summary;

- auto saving of network games;

- standard long-algebraic notation of moves; and- standard FEN notation for board configurations.

The Url is http://chess.labs.morfik.com/

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