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Aquarium 2011 / Houdini Aquarium updates. Build 490.

Convekta/ChessOK is glad to announce the release of the latest updates for Aquarium products. It is highly recommended to download and install these updates as they include a set of important new features. It is especially important for Aquarium 2011 users, as they receive the full set of features implemented in Houdini Aquarium.

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A New Approach to Infinite Analysis
This column is an overview of the infinite analysis capabilities of Aquarium. It is geared towards the following groups: ● Chess players who are considering switching to Aquarium from their current analysis software and want to compare their infinite analysis capabilities. ● Current Aquarium users who need guidance regarding the next steps towards the more powerful infinite analysis features. ● Aquarium users who need a quick overview of infinite analysis, including references to the ChessOK Cafe columns where specific features are described. Read the rest of this entry »

Introduction to the Aquarium Directory Structure

This month I take a brief look at the Aquarium 2011 directory structure. A general understanding of where Aquarium files are stored is useful for performing various tasks, such as backing up important data, and transferring databases and trees from one computer to another, etc. It also helps you to find the most appropriate place to store your personal databases, analysis trees, etc. within the Aquarium directory structure. Read the rest of this entry »

Aquarium Engine Matches and Tournaments, Part Two

After being preempted by the release of Aquarium 2011 for the past two months, we now continue our coverage of engine matches and tournaments in Aquarium.

Observing Games

We finished Part One by having a quick look at the following screen-shot of a chess engine game in progress:


We’ll have a closer look at this window now, starting in the upper-left corner.

There are two tabs at the top of the image. Observe Game is currently active, but Board allows you to set various options related to board display and move input. There are two buttons on the Observe Game tab.


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Aquarium Engine Matches and Tournaments, Part One

Engine matches and tournaments got a very noticeable update in Aquarium 4.0.6. The “Match properties” and “Engine properties” dialog boxes were redesigned to increase consistency in naming and options. Several useful options were also added: ● Unified and improved dialogs for creating matches and tournaments ● Openings can be played from a PGN file ● Prevent unloading of engines from memory between games ● Display game count and duration estimate for a new match/tournament ● Tournament/match settings can be saved and play started later ● Engines can be added to an ongoing tournament ● The board can be automatically inverted to follow the stronger side ● Elo difference is displayed in engine matches ● The time used for individual moves can be displayed in the notation ● Number of endgame tablebase hits can be displayed in the notation ● The games are now stored in CDP (Chess Assistant) database format ● Asymmetric time controls in engine matches are tied to engine instead of color Read the rest of this entry »

Aquarium 2011. Part two

Last month I described several features in the new version of Rybka Aquarium of interest to the serious analyst. This month I’ll continue my coverage of improvements and look a little deeper into how users who prefer infinite analysis can take advantage of IDeA with minimal effort and without the need to study all the options available for automatic IDeA analysis.

HTML Export of iBooks and Games

The first free update of Aquarium 2011 has already been released and it comes with improved HTML export of both iBooks and games. There is a choice of standalone HTML pages that can be uploaded to a Web site or output suitable for inclusion in blog posts. Here is a screen shot of a web page generated from an iBook page with the new version.

You can play through the game by first clicking a move with the mouse and then using the arrow keys on the keyboard. Read the rest of this entry »

Aquarium 2011. Part one

Aquarium 2011 will be released later this month. I have been experimenting with the beta version and if you are interested in opening analysis, correspondence chess, or generally in serious chess analysis, you should definitely read on! Other improvements in Aquarium 2011 will be the subject of future columns.

Initially I had intended to continue my coverage of engine matches and tournament this month, but because of the expected release of Aquarium 2011 I decided to change my topic.

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Aquarium 4.0.6 Released

The long-awaited Aquarium 4.0.6 patch was finally released at the end of December. This is a huge update, involving more than one thousand changes, some of them major.

There is plenty of information available on the Internet about the new version, including several of my columns from last year. I think it’s time to give a high-level overview of this new version based on what has been written about it since the first hints of expected improvements appeared more than six months ago. The changes in the new version fall into these major categories:

  • New features, many of which have been described in previous ChessOK Cafe columns. I know that many users appreciated seeing their suggestions being implemented in this version.
  • Usability improvements, including a more responsive user interface and a more streamlined implementation of several features. Again, these changes were often based on user feedback.
  • Major redesign of the internal structure of important components of the program. These changes are not immediately obvious, but affect the ability of Aquarium to handle large amounts of data, improve performance of some time consuming operations, reduce resource requirements, decrease start up time when there are many open databases, games, IDeA projects, etc. Language support was also redesigned making, it easier to translate Aquarium to different languages.
  • And last but not least, bug fixes.
  • Read the rest of this entry »

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