ABOUT FIDELITY KISHON CHESSTER MODEL 6127 TALKING ELECTRONIC CHESS COMPUTER
FIDELITY KISHON CHESSTER Electronic Chess Computer - picture taken from Kishon Chesster Ad.
MORE ABOUT FIDELITY KISHON CHESSTER MODEL 6127 TALKING CHESS COMPUTER
KISHON CHESSTER is a German speaking Fidelity chess computer with the voice of the famous German chess amateur player Ephraim Kishon. Just like the English speaking CHESSTER used in the Fidelity CHESSTER range of computers, the commentaries are often very humorous and very interactive.
Comments such as “The Cheapest Chess Computer Can Play Better Than You” or “I Cannot Think Of A Reason Why I Should Be Giving You Hints” are commonly spoken by the computer providing you lots of entertainment as you play a match.
Of course this is all meant to be light hearted fun and with a playing strength of ELO 2000 USCF, KISHON CHESSTER will also provide most amateur chess players a tough challenge and years of enjoyment. But, it does of course help if you can understand German!
KISHON CHESSTER is also designed to assist you and there are plenty of options and levels which you can use to develop and improve your play.
The chess program was written by Dan and Kathe Spracklen, with modification and enhancements made by Ron Nelson to suit the build of the computer. The Kishon Chesster speech technology, the software implementation, computer design and build are attributed to Ron Nelson. The same speech technology is also used in all other Fidelity Chesster computers. The synthesized voice is Ephraim Kishon.
Ephraim Kishon was a Jewish Hungarian satirical writer whose books were extremely popular in Germany but were also sold in many other languages. His German voice and vocabulary was used in the Fidelity Kishon Chesster computer. Ephraim Kishon died in 2005.
Ephraim Kishon’s Homepage: http://www.ephraimkishon.de/en/Kishon.htm
The idea for a new voice computer started in 1989 when as quoted by Ron Nelson “Kathy Spracklen wanted to develop something along the educational lines for computer chess. So she started creating a script of what could be said during a game of chess.” Nelson received her script and he subsequently presented her idea in a Marketing meeting. During this meeting the idea of a “Wisecracker personality” was decided upon.
For the voice system Nelson further explained that he flew to meet a Dr. Forrest Mozer who he had met many years previously at the University of California, Berkely during the time when he was first developing the voice used in the early Fidelity Challenger computers. At that time Dr. Mozer had used his equipment to create the ROM subsequently used in the first speaking Challenger computers.
Dr. Mozer at the time of this meeting in 1989, had started his own Company named Sensory, Inc, now managed by his son. Instead of using a chip as previously used in the Challenger series, Dr. Mozer now offered a 65C02 software solution.
After completing the English Chesster Challenger voice, Ron Nelson began working on the Spanish and French versions. It was during this time that Hegener + Glaser wanted Ephraim Kishon to do the German voice as quoted by Ron “Then I started the French & Spanish, but H & G wanted Kishon to do the German translation and actual recording. While still in development, Helmut Wiegel, from H & G, came over to the USA to start testing the German portion.” Ron had designed an Apple development system to display all voice as text. So as explained by Ron “he spent a number of days with me testing and modifying the German voice design”.
Ron Nelson further quoted “Helmut liked the development system and wanted to continue testing back in Germany. So I was commissioned to build a second unit and bring it to Munich. I did and my trip to Germany led me to two projects for H & G”.
Ron Nelson reports are available at the Hiarcs Forum for further reading and research.