Q: Why did you agree to participate in this contest?
A: Frankly speaking its just another interesting experience for me! I have always been curious about the importance of psychological elements in my play and in chess in general and now its a great opportunity to check it out playing against silicon brains of the chess programs!
Q: What do you think are the odds to win this competition?
A: Its very hard to say lets put it this way: I consider myself the underdog, but nevertheless Im quiet optimistic!
Q: How would you evaluate the strength of chess programs you are going to compete with and do you see the differences between the programs which may influence your play this way or another?
A: In my opinion they are extremely strong, Id say about 2700
or even higher. I dont see a big difference between the programs, although
Im pretty sure all of them have their stronger and weaker sides.
Q: What do you think about the time control?
A: I dont complain about it! Of course if wed play with classical controls my chances would increase significantly, but I think the one used is okay as well.
Q: Would you mind to say a few words about your preparation for this event and what kind of strategy are you going to use?
A: Nothing special I guess: Im going to analyze a few games of each one of the programs Im going to play a few training games versus Fritz 7. In this sense the most recent games of Gulko versus the computers contest should be very useful. Concerning the strategy, I may just say that I will try to avoid open positions with a lot of tactical possibilities, which are considered to be the strongest part of computers play. Nevertheless I came to the conclusion that in order to win against a program you have no choice, but to enter a tactical battle when its needed, so I will take certain risks by doing so!
By the way I think that Gulko played quiet well in this contest, but didnt use all practical chances that he had. I fully agree with his opinion that experience of playing versus programs plays a major role in the competition, and thats one of the reasons why I consider myself an underdog: last time I played versus program was back in 1996 and a lot of things has changed since then
Finally, I do not want to repeat all numerous remarks concerning strong and weak points of computer programs "thinking", I will just say, that I am going to avoid any tactics except double threat, fork, winning a piece, rook or queen. God bless me!