Wednesday, May 24, 2006

Finished tactics unit 41 to 45 (module 1)

Tuesday, May 23, 2006

Andrew Martin and The Basics of Winning Chess Middlegame Tips 2. Play with a plan & square control

I got around to watching the second video of the second chapter on middlegametips, in which Andrew Martin shows an examplary game displaying the chapter's theme "playing with a plan and square control" (click here for the introductionary post). It is a game played between Jose Raul Capablanca and Philip Stuart Milner-Barry. Main point of focus should be on Capablanca's play with the theme in mind.

P.S. I could have probably made this a more attractive post but i'm too tired.

Finished tactics unit 40 (module 1)

Sunday, May 21, 2006

Another reason to visit

Need a reason to visit Personally, their chess games database alone is more then enough reason for me to visit. But if you're the kind of person that is looking for some fun on the side, maybe their betting game will do the trick for you. You get to predict real-world professional chess events and bet on them using "chessbucks". If you register for an account (you can register for free as well), you'll receive a 1000 chessbucks to get you started. If you can pick the winners, your chessbucks account will grow and grow. If you're really good, you'll see your name in lights on our Leaderboard, for others to admire. And if you're the best of the best, you will be immortalized in our Hall of Fame (okay, so i coppied some of the explanatory text from I am currently ranked #377 (handle is 'Edwin Meyer') -870 chessbucks and into the loanshark for 1,180 :-(

Ready to place a bet yet? (click here)

Saturday, May 20, 2006

Like Father, Like Daughter

Ya'll probably know about this one allready, but i just came across it. Seems like an interesting follow up to her father's book. Especially since Susan is one of my favourite female players. For more information and reviews, go here.

Finished tactics unit 39 (module 1)

Training history window's working again :-)
Seems my anonymous friend was right. In the previous post my anonymous friend commented that i should make a back-up, which can be done within the program, and then re-install it. Atleast i guess that's what he/she meant. At first i wanted to wait untill i finished module 1. But i decided afterwards i wanted to give it a try right away, which i did. And it worked. Problem solved :-)

Friday, May 19, 2006

Finished tactics unit 38 (module 1)

It's a little different from the training history window, but it'll do. Unless i re-install the program, the error that causes the training history window not to show, stays. And since re-installing means resetting as well, i am not going to. The program works fine otherwise, so...

Thursday, May 18, 2006

Finished tactics unit 37 (module 1)

You're gonna have to take my word for it this time (and maybe from now on) because i am getting an error message when i am trying to view the history window :-(

Tuesday, May 16, 2006

Finished tactics unit 36 (module 1)

I believe i'm on a roll ;-)

Finished tactics unit 35 (module 1)

Monday, May 15, 2006

Finished tactics unit 34 (module 1)

Sunday, May 14, 2006

Finished tactics unit 33 (module 1)

Finished a module in one run for a change. Results were kind of lousy though... The unit was a mix of 1 move 2 move mate problems and 4 move mate problems. I guess it's because i've been doing 4 move mate problems for quite some time now and being focussed on them, because i was having a hard time solving the 1 move 2 move mate problems all of a sudden, while they are suposed to be easier. I do have to say i let my performance be dictated mainly by the minute (per problem) i was given to solve them. I was given a minute and a half for the 4 move mate problems, but they were much easier to solve within the given time span. Does this switching reaction sound familiar to anyone of my readers? Ofcourse it could've been that i just had a bad hair day ;-)

Friday, May 12, 2006

Finished tactics unit 32 (module 1)

Monday, May 08, 2006

Gambit talk

Recent talk of gambits by fellow chess bloggers Quandoman and Blue Devil has caused a gambit, which i tucked away in the back of my mind, to resurface. The gambit was originally known as the Mueller-Schultze gambit. Nowadays it is better known as the Halloween gambit (see diagram).

The position in the diagram is reached after the following moves; 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.Nc3 Nf6 4.Nxe5?! Though it can also be reached after starting out 1. Nc3 e5 2. e4 Nf6 3. Nf3 Nc6 4. Nxe5?! To avoid the more common "other" reply's when you start out 1.e4.
Anyway, if there is one gambit i really have a thing for, it's this one. Eversince i first layed eyes on it. To my knowledge, it is one of the most daring, radical and provocative gambits i've come across. And it's provocativeness (or better yet, it's boldness) is probably one of the main reasons why i like this gambit so much. Now, what does White gain after exchanging his Knight for the pawn? A beautifull center. But that's not all, you also get to rapidly develop your pieces, and not let your opponent develop (as in hindering/slowing it down). And the latter completely equalizes the game just a few moves after having sacrificed the Knight.
A certain Steffen A. Jakob, German chessplayer and computer programmer was probably just as touched by this gambit and created Brause. Brause was a clone of the chess program Crafty loaded with a Halloween gambit opening book and played more than 3000 internet games in the period from 1996 to 1998 in which it scored 72 %. Really, this gambit is not as unsound as it may look. But you definitely have to know your way around the board.
Anyway, i played a few Halloween gambits myself quite some time ago. Won some, lost most. Decided to leave it alone. But in reality, it was always there. Ready to be played again. I was intrigued by it. And i still am! So, after these recent gambit talks, i decided to pick it up again and try and play it occasionally. As an "on the side" kind of thing. I mean, hell! What else am i studying all these tactics for? I might as well try and force them upon my oponent instead of waiting for them to occur. I mean, i'm not a Grandmaster. And if i think realistically, i shall never be one. So why not have fun?
An article about an encounter with David Bronstein brings about the following; Bronstein played the first two moves of the King's gambit on the display board. "This is what you should play," he said. "This is what you can learn about chess. Play for fun. Play the King's gambit." As for openings popular with grandmasters, he said, "They're boring. Look at this. Nowadays they play something like this." He played out the first three or four moves of a Nimzo-Indian Defense and an English opening. "This is popular with the grandmasters. But it's boring."
Anyway, i leave y'all with an examplary game showing just how deadly the Halloween gambit can be.

Friday, May 05, 2006

Finished tactics unit 31 (module 1)

Still 4 move mates and some re-runs :-)

Thursday, May 04, 2006

Crackers for breakfast

Don't you just hate it when you're all alone, studying tactics and all of a sudden someone walks in, sits down right behind you and starts eating crackers for breakfast?