Using eGPU for Chess
I am totally stunned because of my discovery. Perhaps some of you know that I am the author of the chess engine OliThink. It was quite well known, because it had some unique approaches regarding chess engines, many years ago.
Now I detected Leela Chess Zero, a self learning chess program which doesn't have any chess knowledge except the basic rules. This goes in the direction of my chess engine "OliThink".
The best part is: Leela Chess Zero uses eGPU and it makes it very, very strong.
It can use every gpu which is attached, in this case the command was:
./lc0 --backend=multiplexing --backend-opts='(gpu=2,backend=opencl),(gpu=3,backend=opencl)'
They say that with CUDA it is even stronger. (which is a big pity for Mojave or Catalina).
Some more background about chess engines:
When I started programming chess engines in the year 1996, human were still stronger. The ELO rating of the best human is 2700 (as it is today), the best chess engines were 2600, OliThink is about 2400. A ELO difference of 100 points is already a sign for a much stronger player. A typical club player (like myself) has ELO 1700, which still is much better than a player, who just knows the rules with 800.
Meanwhile things have changed, Stockfish and Leelo Chess Zero do have ELO ratings about 3600. Stockfish does have a lot of chess knowledge from the programming, but Leelo Chess Zero does not. It just has the power of eGPUs 😉
Hello dear community, I have some information:
First of all the Lc0 benchmarks for different OpenCL GPUs:
The interesting part is, when you combine two or more CPUs, there is the interesting fact, that not every combination yields better result, especially when more than two GPUs are being used. The best result, so far is:
This looks promising but actually it isn't. Because I was successful in compiling Leelo Chess Zero with CUDA Support for MacOSX and the result is amazing:
It means that CUDA is about 9 times (900%) more effective in calculation than OpenCL. It also means, that you lose a lot of calculation power once you upgrade you MacOSX to Mojave or Catalina, because they do no support CUDA.
PS: Any Combination with other OpenCL Gpus lowers the score:
@itsage: Is Chess an interesting application for the eGPU community?
Here is a match between LC0 (0.42.1) and Stockfish 11. It's quite typical, LC0 dominating midgame but doing strange things in the endgame. This happens when you have hardly any chess knowledge. The match was win since about move 35, but still neede 160 more moves :/
@oliverb, Do professional chess players read those numbers and understand the play in real time?
Yes, they do. I am a non-professional mediocre chess player (about low club level) and I understand the numbers. Of course it's easier and quicker to use a graphical interface like xboard/winboard where you can replay the match. This is the position after the 34. Nd6 when it was very clear, that black was in serious trouble.
The most interesting part is, that black (Stockfish 11) is actually the best chess program/player ever, but self learning Leela Chess Zero combined with eGPU power looks even stronger.
It is a scandal that the feud between Apple and nVidia causes that CUDA on MacOSX is dead after High Sierra.
They spit on science and progress.