Do you know which PC chess playing engine became the second strongest one in the world after Rybka this year? It’s Stockfish, a free chess engine distributed under the GNU General Public License.

It may look surprising that a hobby program with publicly available source code can beat all the proprietary engines with their secrets and hard working full-time developers. But it just proves that cooperation, open development, sharing (Stockfish developers make just the playing engine and don’t have to care about user interfaces already provided by other programs) and making things for fun may lead to excellent results.

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