Saturday, November 26, 2005

Andrew Martin and The Basics of Winning Chess The Opening 1.a) Take the centre

Now, i know i've promissed myself not to start something new, before finishing what i've started first. I make exeptions for stuff like this though. Why? Because this is more of the general type of stuff. Stuff that can be generally applied. It does not concern a specific part of the game. Like all of a sudden start learning a new opening or something like that. I want to avoid doing other specific stuff while on PCT doing tactics. But i'll be going deeper into that in another post. This post is once again about the ChessBase DVD that i am watching. Tonight, i went from introduction to tips about the opening. It has 4 chapters. The first chapter is divided into two sections. 1 a and 1 b. Anyway, i've been watching (as you can guess from the posts title, 1 a :)
Now, 1 a, shows us a game (in which to my surprise my favourite opening was played, only using a less favourable variation) between Bent Larsen and Boris Spassky
(click to replay).
It is a game in which the importance of "taking the center" comes to light. White allows black to take the center, without directly challenging it, and ends up being punished for it. Again, this is a clear example of the basics in chess. So please, do watch. What else have i picked up? Well, not much this time. Except for the following advice; Stick to the basics untill you've completely mastered them. And that's all for 1 a.

Friday, November 25, 2005

Andrew Martin and The Basics of Winning Chess Introduction

To some it might seem i am not very active where it comes to studying chess these days, and you're right! I am not. But i am trying to squeeze some in here and there. And one must not forget that i am considering the best of moves almost everyday, in quite some turn-based games i've got going on around the web. And i am still in review mode of PCT. Not that there are that many positions to review yet. About 300+ or so, but it's not like i am doing nothing. And the activity will come again. Anyway, as i said, while trying to squeeze some study in here and there, i decided to start watching a ChessBase DVD that i've got, titled Andrew Martin: The basics of winning chess a few days ago, in which International Master Andrew Martin (who would be on my list of most wanted coaches) is your trainer. I only managed to view the intro though. But never the less, the intro contained one highly instructive game. It shows you very clearly what lack of development can do to you. And vice versa ofcourse :)
Now, the game is played between former world champion Mikhail Tal and Georgi Tringov (click to replay). Again i would like to point out that it's a highly instructive game, due to it's clearness. So i advice you to do replay it. What else have i picked up from the introduction? Well, Andrew Martin tells you that "constantly refering back to basics" is an absolute must! And that it is certainly "NOT" a shame to do so. Not that i am ashamed of going over basic stuff, but someone else might be. But it is exactly the basics on which a game is so often decided. By not following basic principles (for instance) you often find yourself losing games. Also, he tells you to set it as your aim to become an all-round player right at the beginning. Meaning you've got to learn to play the opening well, the middlegame well, and the endgame well. As he believes that today's player, should be an all-round one. Also, he talks about developing mental strength, in order to be ready for the game. He talks about enjoyment of the game. Enjoyment and wanting to win. As it is his belief, that this is the key to getting it right. You have to try and get yourself into a mindstate of enjoyment of the game, which in turn will help you play at your best. Without it, you will not be able to play at your best. Furthermore, he advices that if chess becomes a chore, and you're tired of it, to simply stop playing. Stop, regroup, and come back to it later. Chess should not be addictive, nor compulsive. Anyway, that is roughly what i picked up of the introduction, so if it isn't making any sense, sorry 'bout that :)
I will be commenting about the rest of the DVD's contents as well. So expect to hear more from Andrew Martin: The basics of winning chess. And thank's to everyone outthere for sharing it ;)

Knights Errant "Flickr" group is no more

Due to lack of interest i decided to delete the group :(
It was fun while it lasted :)

Sunday, November 20, 2005

General Principles

As someone who (at some point) had the ambition to get somewhere in the Dutch Hip Hop industry (which is booming right now), the following caught my eyes and ears. It's an album by DJ.Muggs and Wu-Tang's GZA called "Grandmasters".
What should you care, well, maybe cause they blend Hip Hop with chess on it. Apparently, Muggs and GZA both have a passion for the 64 squares just as we do. Hot tip! It seems that GZA plays chess on the Internet even, at none other place then Yahoo!.
So if you're a Yahoo! player, you just might have crossed swords with GZA once. Though i haven't got a clue as to what his nickname might be.
Anyway, i don't know if there are more Hip Hop fans amongst the Knights, but i leave ya'll with a videoclip of one of the tracks of the album. It features samples from none other then Garry Kasparov and they use a lot of chess imagery. You can safely download it to your computer. The track is called "General Principles". Back in the days, we would have called this "def", "dope" or "fresh", and it defenitly fits that description :)

Sunday, November 13, 2005

Update on what's happening

So what's happening? Well, to tell you the truth, not really much. I barely analyzed/annotated anything. I haven't even been playing GTA or watching movies, like i said i would. Everytime i got in front of the computer i just stared at the screen, not knowing what it is i wanted to do... I don't know, it's kinda hard to explain exactly. I did a little tweaking on the blog as you might have noticed, and i did try to keep up with doing tactics, by going over PCT in review mode. Going over the PCT positions i encountered so far. A nice feature i might add. But it was all far too little, i should be doing more... I'm just not up to my usual self (whatever that might be these days). I'll keep you posted on that. I have been playing quite a lot of blitz games as a guest on Playchess. Like i often do, as a form of training. That way i do not have to concern myself with ratings and such. It really is a nice way to practice your play, or get warmed up before playing rated. Besides, my play is terrible at the moment so i'm not really eager to play rated. I did manage to find some pretty good moves in my turn-based games though, so not all is lost :)
Oh, i don't know if ya'll have heard of Flickr before, but i have set up a Knights Errant group there. And i would like to invite you all to join if you're interested. I do need ya'll email adresses so i can set you up. Thought it would be a nice idea to promote the Knights some more. It offers some pretty fun stuff. Anyway, if you're not interested let me know as well. So that i can either continue or delete the group.

Thursday, November 10, 2005

Internet chess statistics update

An update on my stats is available! Check it out if you're interested. 7 out of 3 have positive scores. Sign's of improvement?