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  Investigative Surgery: Excalibur Chessica
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   Author  Topic: Investigative Surgery: Excalibur Chessica  (Read 843 times)
Dick Schneiders
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My favorite move is a Queen sacrifice???

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Re:Investigative Surgery: Excalibur Chessica
« on: June 19, 2005, 04:14PM »
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[quote author=Ismenio link=board=1;threadid=317;start=0#msg2541 date=1119154476

By the way Dick, first, congratulations on your Fidelity and did you know John didnít even know he had that one? I was checking some of his boxes and I found it for him! It was on my wish list but I donít think I could get it so Iím glad you got it!

Best,

Ismenio



Ismenio,

No, John never mentioned that to me.  How could he not know that he owned a Fidelity Elite Avant Garde? 

Thanks for leaving something behind for somebody else. 

It should arrive tomorrow or the next day.  Hopefully I will have better luck with it than I am having with the Conchess Ambassador.

Dick Schneiders
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Mike Watters
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Another day, another blunder.

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Re:Investigative Surgery: Excalibur Chessica
« Reply #1 on: June 19, 2005, 12:09AM »
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I have my own ďnever open a computerĒ rule and for the most part I obey it, but I do break it once in a while!

Ismenio


Ismenio

It is a good job you have this "never open a computer" rule otherwise no chess computer would feel safe.

I do not have a rule I am just scared when I open something that is actually working in case I ruin it. When I opened up the Mirage to answer the "which chess computer is this?" quiz I had a lesson. I split the case when it was the wrong way up and the insides, such as they are in a Mirage, spilled out. As you say the Phantom is a different proposition. A nicely made machine and no problem to open up and have a look inside. Mending one? Now that is a different matter. 

Mike
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Ismenio
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Re:Investigative Surgery: Excalibur Chessica
« Reply #2 on: June 18, 2005, 09:14PM »
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Tom,

I have my own ďnever open a computerĒ rule and for the most part I obey it, but I do break it once in a while! At least, nobody else will have to!
Sometimes Iím so curious (as Christian said) that I do it just to take a peek inside them! (No one has any doubts that Iím crazy anymore ) I actually brought the Chessica on our weekend getaway here in Cedar Point!

I think the new computers pretty much have all circuits build in a unique chip. There was a thread we had a while ago (hereís a short cut to that:  http://tinyurl.com/9bmrv  ) where we had a ďguess the computer gameĒ based on a picture of the internals. It was the Excalibur Mirage and in that model we also have just one single chip controlling the whole thing.

By the way, though I have never opened one of my Phantoms, I did see a couple opened when I went to see John Dutton and that confirmed how much better they were built, when compared to the Mirage.

By the way Dick, first, congratulations on your Fidelity and did you know John didnít even know he had that one? I was checking some of his boxes and I found it for him! It was on my wish list but I donít think I could get it so Iím glad you got it!

Best,

Ismenio
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Overtom
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Re:Investigative Surgery: Excalibur Chessica
« Reply #3 on: June 18, 2005, 02:41AM »
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Ismenio, you're quite audacious, I must say! I don't think I would open any of my computers just out of curiosity. I only did this once when I had a specimen with a very bad-looking housing and one that looked perfect, but was in fact not functioning (even in that respect chess computers resemble humans!).

It seems there are no other digital components than the mysterious object which is packed in tar-like substance, but what you so neatly refer to as "thermal paste". No controllers, no memory chips, not even a crystal?

But the pictures have turned out great. That you risk your fine hardware for such wonderful images places you into the Hall Of Fame (of chess computer nuts ).

It was with great relief that I read the end of the story where it said "the computer still works fine".

Thanks for this original and colourful presentation!

Best regards,

tom
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Endspielgott
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Re:Investigative Surgery: Excalibur Chessica
« Reply #4 on: June 18, 2005, 02:07AM »
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Quote from: Ismenio on June 17, 2005, 08:30PM   


By the way, after the surgery was complete and everything put back to normal, the computer still works fine!

Ismenio


Curiosity I sense strong in you!
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Ismenio
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Investigative Surgery: Excalibur Chessica
« Reply #5 on: June 17, 2005, 08:30PM »
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Like Tom, I also want to know the technical details of the computers and looks like we were both intrigued by the Excalibur Deluxe Talking Touch Chess AKA Chessica.

I donít think weíll ever find out mode details about this computer unless we get an insider, a contact at Excalibur. I tried to get more information by opening it but it was helpless.
Usual disclaimer: Donít try this at home folks! Remember, Iím a professional ďnutĒ! (=crazy, mad, mad man!)

Here you can see the CPU, everything is inside that black thing. Last I checked, companies used to do that to prevent reverse-engineering. You couldnít get to the components without breaking them so competitors couldnít find out what chips you used. Either that or this also serves as some sort of thermal paste but I donít think so because I find it hard to believe it would generate that much heat. But thatís just speculation.
So looks like it's a dedicated chip with everything on it.



So maybe we can see some more integrated circuits under the circuit board, right? Well, first to get there we need to remove this plastic frame. By the way, I think this thing has more screws than a Tasc Smartboard! 5 for the case + 7 for the plastic frame + 10 for the circuit board!



Nope! Nothing to see here, except the touch sensitive LCD! I also checked between the LCD and the board but thereís nothing there but the circuit tracks!
BTW, If you ever get here, please donít touch the screen! (the small black spots you see on the screen are the reflection of the screws on the table )



Finally, something I found was amusing. Looks like Iím not the only one who canít spell! RESTE?
Also there are about 4 points on the board with the word TEST on them.



By the way, after the surgery was complete and everything put back to normal, the computer still works fine!

Ismenio
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