Day 284: Susie Surgery 2020 Second Round

Today we got up a bit late and drove to Portland without issue to the dermatology folks to perform the second batch of Mohs surgery on Susie’s cancerous and precancerous skin issues on her back and nose. There is no waiting room in the world of Covid-19, so I drop Susie off and wait in the car in the parking lot.

This is a repeat of last week, and after 2021 starts, we have one more treatment on Susie’s legs. The surgery removes a minimum of skin. The margins are then checked there in the office, and if there is no cancer on the margins, then the surgery is finished, and careful stitches are done. Otherwise, another cut is made to widen the excision, and the margins are rechecked. Susie had a good day as the first excision had clear margins.

I drove Susie home, stopping by Burger King for burgers, Whopper Jr with just cheese for Susie with a shake, and a regular Whopper with cheese for me. Susie was exhausted, and so was I. We slept the afternoon away.

I got up and let Susie rest. I watched the movie Frozen 2 while Susie slept a while until the pain started-up. More Tylenol helped a bit. We did get out some frozen green beans as an ice pack for her. That helped her stop the pain, and she slept some more.

As an aside, while waiting in the car, I got out my Apple computer and worked on my chess program. I changed how the matrix that controls pawns again makes the pawns move more towards the center and the board’s end. I then played a few games against the program.

I had two hours waiting in the car, so I fixed a few issues with the looping control and an uncaught exception. The chess program played long enough without an exception that I got to try a castle. It worked! The program is finally moving some pawns. I did take the computer’s queen. There is a failure in the next move evaluation that undervalues taking a piece for an exchange. I will try to fix that.

The code that actually picks the move is about twenty lines long. I think it plays good chess for so few lines of code. It is using a simple evaluation function.

RISK_FACTOR: Loss of piece value
BOARD_FACTOR: Place on board value
PIECE_FACTOR: Value of pieces for exchange
BOARD_KING: Place on board value for King move
SUPPORT_FACTOR: Value of interlocking support
HOLD_FACTOR: Value of hold attack loss

These values are added together to make a score, and each is multiplied by a weighting factor. The move that has the highest value is selected, ties go to pawns.

To check that the move is not a disaster, a new board is dynamically created, and the move actually played and then checked not to trip the end of the game or other terrible loss, and it is scored. The dynamic board is then thrown away, and the game continues on the original board. The chessboard handling routines are all from the library Python-Chess! So easy!

The factors need to be tuned to make the gameplay better chess. The calculation is so fast that I may build a tree of possible plays and look for a better move over a few moves ahead.

It is relaxing to again be coding Artificial Intelligence. I have missed working on Python and AI.

Returning to the story, I ordered from Nonna Emilia Ristorante Italiano using DoorDash this evening. This is an old school American-Italian style food joint that has been in Beaverton forever. Corwin and I were a year ago with Susie in Amsterdam having dinner. We ordered dinner delivered here at the house and wished each other a happy holiday as we did in Amsterdam in 2019. We would have preferred another trip, but we are happy that all of us made it to tonight.

The food is too much and quite good for American-Italian. Salad, soup, garlic bread, and pasta mains. All good. Susie was not up to it; I will make her something when she is ready.

Susie was up a bit late, and I made her a late snack of some peanut butter toast with banana slices. The pain is gone tonight. She is so much better. I am off from Nike tomorrow and will do all the house chores that always slip. I will try to get some rest. These things are very stressful for the caregiver too.

3,376 people died from Covid-19 today in the USA.

Today’s song is a departure from hymns, The Dutch National Anthem. A thank you for Amsterdam 2019, and I hope to be back soon.



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