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Re: Interested in programming a GTK frontend to gnuchess

From: Sean Hammond
Subject: Re: Interested in programming a GTK frontend to gnuchess
Date: Fri, 23 Dec 2005 03:14:06 +0000

Okay, that documentation looks like exactly what I need. Great. It looks as
if it *should* be pretty easy to interface with gnuchess once I get going.

Now I just need to learn PyGTK!

I'm currently supposed to be studying for a Ph.d. and should really be
working on that, and I've never programmed with GTK before, so I can't
promise much. On the other hand, I've been aching to learn GTK for ages and
it's fun.

I am thinking of writing a simple frontend that lets you play chess against
the computer. If I get that far I don't think I'll go any further
immediately. I'll publish the source code though.

I've mocked up a frontend in Glade. Stuff will have to be added to it, no
doubt, but anyway:

Feedback appreciated.

On 12/22/05, Simon Waters <> wrote:
> Sean Hammond wrote:
> >
> > I haven't been able to find a particularly modern-looking GNOME frontend
> for
> > gnuchess, and am interested in programming one with GTK+.
> Agreed,
> GNOME Chess was a start.
> A lot of people "keep coming back to Xboard" because it is just
> sufficient, but it had oddities, and no one wants to play with those
> widgets these days.
> > Specifically I
> > would like to use PyGTK. Where can I find information about the
> interface
> > gnuchess 5 offers for frontends? Is it simply a case of looking through
> the
> > gnuchess source, and if so, can someone point to a good starting point?
> It is documented in the xboard/winboard source tar ball.
> When GNU Chess is started with "xboard" it is a trivial two pipe
> communication with flushing of output (guaranteed), such as Perl
> IPC::Open2 expects.
> > I noticed gnuchess itself has a text interface, I suppose I could
> probably
> > just write a program that communicates with gnuchess through that, but I
> > would have to know what the commands are.
> Covered above.
> However I think the protocol may need extending to cover extras for a
> really comprehensive program, as I think it make sense to use an engine
> (GNU Chess) for most of the chess logic. Such as "what are the legal
> moves here", and information from book etc.
> It is a difficult call as that might make an interface engine specific
> (or alternatively it could use an instance of GNU Chess for its "logic",
> without pondering, and use another Winboard engine as an opponent?).

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