Pouch Deposits

The Editor and the Readership

Here's the Mail

Aside from a letter on Dip AIs from Jason Van Hal (creator of the formidable Albert bot) and a quick word from our Assistant Editor, our mailbag is kind of empty this time round. Hopefully that will change next issue — there have been a lot of good articles to comment on in recent issues. In the meantime, don't be shy! Send us your letters!

Mail Received Concerning
Tactical Importance Points (TIPs)

From Charles Roburn:

Dear Editor,

What a great, simple yet effective way of evaluating the importance of different spaces on the map! Once again, a useful concept from Chess has been successfully adapted to the Diplomacy board. Kudos to Dorian Love!

Charles Roburn

Mail Received Concerning
Roles of Artificial Intelligence

From Jason Van Hal c/o The Editor:


I stumbled on the article regarding artificial intelligence and thought I would write you a quick email.

I enjoyed the small exposure that DAIDE got, even though I wished DAIDE could get more in general sometimes.

It was you who had actually got me very interested in Diplomacy playing the Paradox game. Since then I have pursued 'learning' and then programming AIs for the DAIDE project. Although you want to 'kill' the machine. I have found great enjoyment in making a better machine. In fact I have a fairly competitive AI (Albert_v1) at the moment that plays only a no-press game, but calculates optimum moves for all players and adjudicates the turn approximately 75000 times to try an establish a good distribution of tactical ordersets.

Anyways there is some progress in the AI field, and I would strongly encourage you to look closely at DAIDE and the state of affairs. Hopefully providing even more exposure for it at the Pouch in the future.

Your article's focus was on having a fill in player for PBEM games. This would be possible by David and I would encourage you to encourage him to do so. :o) The RT community is small. And as someone who is dedicating a lot of time to the creation of these AIs, I want the most exposure possible, and the opportunity to let the most amount of people enjoy my efforts. :o)

I am focused on programming AIs, but the PBEM interface to DAIDE would need to come from him or someone with the abilities to program that level of communications.

Given David's PBEM interface, I could even program my bot to read in a profile file of Allies, Enemies and Neutral and submit orders accordingly.

However, the desire for build priority and removal priority is not something that would be easily done or desireable. I think at the point someone hands over control to a bot, you really only should tell it the current state of alliances at most. My bot would likely consider breaking them after the first turn if in its interest anyways.

Sorry for the ramble. My brain is still suffering from lack of sleep from New Years parties.


Jason van Hal

Well, there you have it. Another Deposits column. Yep, it sure is.