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Member since May-08-11 · Last seen Feb-21-18
Decided to post on cg again without getting too fond of it. Welcome to anyone who visits my forum! I don't look much like my avatar, but that's pretty much how I think I am.
>> Click here to see Dionysius1's game collections. Full Member

   Dionysius1 has kibitzed 1255 times to chessgames   [more...]
   Feb-21-18 Fusilli chessforum (replies)
Dionysius1: Hi <Fusilli>. Best wishes for June 3. Hi <OCF>. My favourite sob story about overestimating my opponent: In 1973-4 I had a miracle year of chess. It seemed that I couldn't lose a game if I tried. My teachers suggested I enter the Irish Schoolboys championship in ...
   Feb-21-18 R Costigan vs L Day, 1987 (replies)
Dionysius1: 47. ♖xf7 works as well.If Black forces the Queen exchange then White picks up the bishop. If he takes on f7 White can keep checking to mate.
   Feb-19-18 B Jeran vs D Cawdery, 2017 (replies)
Dionysius1: I assume Jeran saw the tactic once Black played 18...♗xh3, which would be why he didn't play 19 hxg3. So he must have decided to be a good sport and play 20 ♔xg2 to let Cawdrey show his working. But 19 f4 would have been ok.
   Feb-18-18 Lord Dunsany
Dionysius1: And like schoolboys do you can turn rooks on their heads. (And I know you said at most, but the minimum required in optimum circumstances would make a more satisfying solution :-) )
   Feb-17-18 J van Foreest vs A Liang, 2017 (replies)
Dionysius1: I did miss how good 15. a4 is though - threatening to follow up with 16. Nb5 which threatens a triple fork. Those triple forks - I do love them: even the threat of them wins material because the defender can't protect against all of them, even with a move notice. I might try and ...
   Feb-17-18 Short vs N E Povah, 1978
Dionysius1: Hi <zborris8>. Visually I think I would chose Black, though White wins in the end. Is that what you mean? I haven't come across the expression in this context before. I see the analytical engine cg provides says the position is pretty much even.
   Feb-17-18 1st American Chess Congress (1857)
Dionysius1: There's something weird about the biography when it says: "Despite dropping one game in the final match, Morphy finished the tournament with an astounding 14 wins, 3 draws, and 1 loss." How can "Despite dropping one game...Morphy finished...with one loss" make sense? I think the ...
   Feb-12-18 Showalter vs J Mason, 1900 (replies)
Dionysius1: It does go to illustrate the difference between treating chess as a competitive game, and chess as an art form or puzzle. If you think of chess as a competition, it could be churlish to point out a complicated win someone missed, because it would suggest they had failed. If you ...
   Feb-11-18 Tired Old Man (Computer)
Dionysius1: Nice joke about the talking frog <norami>. I heard a similar one about a TOM walking in the woods when out jumped a beautiful, athletic woman in a superhero outfit. "Ta da! Superwoman!" she cried. After a long pause TOM looked sadly at her and said "Thank you my dear, I ...
   Feb-11-18 Tata Steel (2018) (replies)
Dionysius1: Tl;dr = too long;didn't read
(replies) indicates a reply to the comment.

Kibitzer's Corner
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Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: Yes,
Computers have supplied them some easy answers.

Back in the day,
you had to figure out why you won/lost,
and if it was even real.

You had to refute your own innovation.

<Have our pattern recognition skills improved?>

...or do we even have them?

They've tested chess players and found the have good recognition when it comes to "chessy" positions. When it comes to random pcs. scattered over the board they do as well as nonchess players

For example: you can remember pawns at:
f2,g3,h2, as a "fianchetto" formation.

If they are at a8,d1,f6, you dont have a pattern to work with. (not to mention "illegal" positions like a pawn at d1)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Of course 9though I've only just thought of it, the patterns that are useful to chess players involve 4 dimensions, not just 3. I mean it's not very useful to remember positions, it's what happens next that makes the difference. I wonder whether the 100,000 (suspiciously round figure that it is) takes that into account. If the significance of each starting position for a combination is as the start of 4 moves, then the 100,000 positions might resolve to 25,000 combinations for example.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: I persuaded a friend to try out a variation on chess which I've been interested in for a while. I think it might be the most minimal change possible, and yet it does make things very different and interesting. Set up the pieces exactly as you would at the beginning of any normal game, and then just change seats with your opponent. You still have the colour you had when you set the pieces up, you're just sitting further away from them, and as you develop your pieces/move your pawns, they're coming towards you, not going away. I'd be interested in reading of any impressions people have if they've played this way.
Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Yesterday I examined a game I played last week which I was confident I should win and I only drew.

Looking over it with a machine was horrible, but effective. I spent about a day promising myself to give chess up. How can I play soundly one day and make that many mistakes the next?

Fortunately I've just heard Peter Svidler say on a chat with Jan that it takes strong nerves to look your games over with a computer.

To illustrate what I mean (in case other patzers would like to chuckle to themselves, or promise themselves not to make such bad mistakes in their own games, here's an example.I was black

1. e4 c5 2. Nf3 d6 3. d4 ed 4.Nxd4 Nf6 5. Nc3 a6 6. Bc4 e6 7.0-0 Be7 8. Re1 0-0 9. f4 b5 10. Bb3 Re8 11.e5 de 12.fe Nd5 13. Nxe5 exd5 14. Kh1

click for larger view

Here as black I should have been looking out for back row checks that I could use. From the second whitle played 14. Kh1 I should have been thinking "Ahah - he can't get his K off the back rank, not with the pawns at g2 and h2". Instead I got absorbed in middle of the board pieces and whether I was in a lot of danger around d6 and f7 (According to Stockfish I was)...14... Bb7 15. c3 Nc6. 16. Nf5 Be8 17. Bxd5 Qd7 18.Nd6 Bxd6 19. exd6 Re1+ 20. Qxe1 Qe4 By now I'm over the worst, but ...

click for larger view

Now I missed 21...Na5

Garn! The game drizzled on to a BOC with me a pawn up and I couldn't win it.

Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: <Dionysius1:
I'd be interested in reading of any impressions people have if they've played this way.>

When I studied chess, played over games. I always tried to view the game from the winning side, if possible. I cant tell if it made any difference.
(You have no A/B comparison)
...but I cant see how it would hurt.

While that just deals with the mechanics of learning, the best actual experience comes if you play the openings you face.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Thanks <diceman>. I found it really strange.

It's one thing playing over the moves sitting where your opponent would have sat. It's another one creating a game in actual combat while sitting in your opponent's seat. It was both the feeling of being "behind enemy lines" and having your own side coming at you that was hard to get used to.

I didn't feel tempted to move the black pieces I was sitting behind, but I did have to remind myself that when the pieces nearest to me were in trouble, I was doing well.

We didn't try with clocks - reaching over for the other button (we still have clockworks) would have felt too extra weird.

Premium Chessgames Member
  OhioChessFan: <A thought on the long-running speculation about how the old champions would do against the current ones. Would they even want to play the way the game is today?>

19th century chess was a lot more fun. White initiates a Kingside attack, Black handles it or not, game over. Just as sports is getting too much into scientific method and numbers crunching, likewise chess. I think. I mean, sports and chess are games. Do we really have to analyze them to death? I guess so, because people want to win games, and that's how you do it, but a lot of the charm of the particular game is lost in the process.

As for 20th century players, I suspect Alekhine and probably Botvinnik would love to have engines available for analysis and would fit right in.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: I think you're right. For example I've been doing a fair bit of tactics training recently and getting better at it. But I'm getting too caught up in the analysis, and not having as much fun.

I love those moments when I'm surprised to discover some nice tactic, but being told there is one and to find it is a bit like going back to school and doing homework. I suppose in short for me there's no substitute for playing another human being and sharing the pleasure.

I like your point about Botvinnik, but I wonder about Alekhine. I read somewhere that he could get shirty if someone pointed out where he'd gone wrong, and was a bit prone to making stuff up. He mightn't have liked the computers, which are no respecters of persons!

Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: <OhioChessFan:

a lot of the charm of the particular game is lost in the process.>

The problem with everything.
Like computer graphics in movies, vs actors.

<As for 20th century players, I suspect Alekhine and probably Botvinnik would love to have engines available for analysis and would fit right in.>

Frank Marshall probably wouldn't.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: I've been playing a lot of tactical puzzles on and found something that will probably help my chess a lot if I can make the change.

Up to about 1650 Glicko (a bit like Elo), I was solving everything on the basis of spotting what looked like a pretty move and investigating it. That would either solve the problem or put me on the right track.

Above that I've gone from solving everything to solving almost nothing. The real solutions turn out to be the messy looking moves and feel unsatisfying.

And my motivation for doing the puzzles has fallen like a stone.

It looks like if I'm going to be successful beyond 1650 (which seems like average club player level) I'm going to have to either:

a. look for ugly moves and hope that I come to see the beauty in them that at the moment I need as my reward for the effort


b. Think of playing better chess as less than an aesthetic exercise and more of a sport where the pleasure of winning is my justification.

That's less attractive I must say. Any suggestions please?

Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: I always hated problems.

Liked stuff like, “What's the Best Move” by Larry Evans. More about general chess, vs finding a “shot.”

The “problem” is, you're told something is there, so you are looking for it.
In a real game you don't know when a “shot” will unfold.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Isn't the idea that over time by solving lots of puzzles we become sensitized to the kind of positions where they arise. I like the idea of being able to say to myself in a live game: "Now here's the kind of position I've seen in puzzles. I bet there's a winning move somewhere".
Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: <Dionysius1> Tactics are the tools of chess, and the better tactician typically wins. Moreover, tactics and strategy go hand in hand; a good tactic can often overcome a bad strategy, while a good strategy can only rarely overcome a bad tactic.

I advise advanced juniors to practice 10 puzzles per day, then 100 per day if they are preparing for a tournament. Yes this becomes "homework" but it is also a fundamental part of improvement. Just like athletes lift weights and jump rope even though it has nothing to do with their sport, we practice solving puzzles to stay sharp and learn pattern recognition. <diceman> makes the point that all chess puzzles are contrived by definition; you know "something's there" so your analysis tree starts with checks and forcing moves. A great way to improve is to find decisive games in this database without any kibitzing comments yet, then figure out why they resigned. If you are unsure, you could post, "I think White wins with 40. Rf7+" and see if anyone concurs, or others have simply asked, "What's the finish?" and someone will invariably answer.

Another great way to improve is through posting your games in your chessforum for advice and analysis, looking for improvements. From your last diagram:

click for larger view

21 ... Rd8 wins a piece as White has a weak back rank; 22. Bb3 Qd1+! mates, or 22. c4 bxc4 doesn't help. White would probably get one Pawn for the piece with 22. Bxf7+ Kxf7 23. Be3 and now you don't want 23 ... Qd1+?? 24. Rxd1 Rxd1+ 25. Bg1. A pin against a mate threat is called a Terminal Pin, so the Bd5 is pinned against the potential mate threat on d1.

You could study puzzles by theme (Mate, Fork, Pin, Skewer) as a teaching tool; my students and I prepare puzzle sets based on our own games. If you don't like knowing the motif first (e.g. "Knight Fork" is a giveaway), there are mixed bag sets where you aren't told what to find. User: WTHarvey has thousands of free mixed bag puzzles on his site. Good luck. =)

Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: <Dionysius1: Isn't the idea that over time by solving lots of puzzles we become sensitized to the kind of positions where they arise.>

One thing you also need to take into consideration, the openings you play.

I was a positional player. Played the English with white. Most of the Frank Marshall's of my day told me I was probably “missing” tactics by playing positionally. However, when run through the computer, my pre-computer games show that I didn't miss much.

Today ( for fun) I've played 1.e4, King's Gambit, Danish Gambit, Evans Gambit, Vienna.

After 1d4 :The Blackmar–Diemer Gambit.
With black: Englund Gambit, Latvian Gambit, Elephant Gambit.

Not because I think these things are great, but to see what I missed.

It's funny, because I see all the tactics I missed playing the English.

E5 to e6 pawn advance. Qh5+ tactics. The weakness of g6 after f7/h7 pawn moves. All these are characteristic of open e4/e5 positions.

Typically in the English my bishop goes to g2
by move 3 or 4. If black responds bg7 there will be no Qh5 tactics because of the g6 pawn.
(assuming your e2 pawn has moved)

So “tactics” change. In the English they become more about the queenside/center.

Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: <tpstar:

A pin against a mate threat is called a Terminal Pin>

Sounds like terminology a Doctor would use.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Thanks - it's great to read your comments! I go for 10 correct solutions in a row, or how many can I solve before the kettle boils. Lessons I'm learning: forks etc don’t have to be of pieces – they can be a fork of a piece and a positional advantage. Some wins are opportunistic – all my pieces can be aimed at the opposing king side, but he’s got a loose piece on the queen side. The solution is nearly always simpler than I think it is.

Someone asked me recently “how can people play blindfold simultaneous?" I think for grand masters chess might be like a language and a game be like a conversation. We can all keep more than one conversation going at a time can’t we?

Premium Chessgames Member
  tpstar: <Dionysius1> Pins and forks can involve squares and not just pieces. In your game, 21 ... Rd8 pins the Bd5 against the d1 square due to the weak back rank.

1) Spassky vs Averkin, 1973 after 25 ... Rb6:

click for larger view

Spassky spots a potential fork between a mate threat on g7 and the c7 square with Qe5, but the immediate 26. Qe5 allows 26 ... Bf8 or 26 ... g6 by Black which hold. So instead 26. Bc7! (Pin) Rxc7 27. Qe5 (Fork) g6 28. Qxc7 won the exchange.

2) A Schwarz vs Albin, 1899 after 13. exd4:

click for larger view

13 ... Ne3 forks the Qd1 and the Bf1 but also the c2 square, then 14. Qc1 Nc2+ forks the Ke1 and the Ra1. Two Knight forks in a row is an Extended Knight Fork.

Study tactics! =)

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Something that studying tactics doesn't seem to help with is being ready for my opponents' tactics.

Puzzles always imply "what can you do to win?" not "what tactics does your opponent have?" And it is significant that in puzzles you're always sitting behind the pieces which have the winning tactics.

I might, if I chose to make the time for it, take a game which is won on a puzzle style tactic, take it back a few moves before the tactic and ask myself "if I was the opponent, when could I have spotted this, and stopped it (and how)?"

Otherwise the results of my games are just likely to be based on who spots their tactical opportunity first!

Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: Not only that.
What about positions that have no trick/shot?

You need to be able to calculate just to play a complex move that is equal.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: Yes, maybe it is another version of just being able to calculate. I just need to be able to focus on my opponent's intentions more. My temptation with developing a puzzles mentality is to assume the other side is just there to cooperate.
Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: I was watching this game live
and thought of your forum.

Jennifer R Yu vs A Sharevich, 2017

Black missed the shot 17...Rxb2+

It's funny, in a game, it would probably be the only move I'd look at. (unless I couldn't make it work)

As a puzzle, it would probably be the last move Id look at, because they usually dont make it obvious.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: I love the way top players can visualise future positions as clearly as they can see the position on the board.

I'm working on it as part of my overall programme to increase my personal efficiency. But golly it's hard - I hope it gets easier. Yesterday I saw Carlsen and Svidler analysing after their Tata 2018 game, and Svidler obviously found it easier to look away from the board to imagine an upcoming position.

We all do it a bit, but to be able to really anchor it so that the position in 6 moves is as clear in my head as the current position would be great. Then I could really begin to evaluate the resulting positions. Not so difficult for solving puzzles but for playing otb chess it'd be great. My chess team number one Chris Ross is blind so he can do it all the time.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: I'm trying to work out the best way to talk about computer analysis when discussing a game on any of these threads.

I've been disproportionately annoyed when I quote a computer engine line that illustrates some point I want to make and someone gets snitty about "oh, I rely on my own analysis".

If we're analysing a game surely it's ok to give a line I wouldn't have thought of on my own?

Maybe the reaction because of people who denigrate GMs with "what a clod - he didn't see this line".

But I'm stubborn - I don't want to forever put in a caveat that goes "I know I would never have thought of it myself, but stockfish says...". I shouldn't have to - I'm just not interested in making you think I'm better than I am by claiming search engine analysis as my own, and anyone who even bothers to look up my profile will know I'm not good enough to be confused with a search engine anyway.

So what the heck people? What are/should be the rules of engagement when we're discussing games and bring engine analysis into it?

Premium Chessgames Member
  diceman: The only benchmark should be if the
analysis is correct.

So I would say:

Stockfish says: (insert analysis here)

<Stockfish says:> Lets them know you are not pretending it's yours.

If they say:

<oh, I rely on my own analysis>

I would ask how it differs?

Premium Chessgames Member
  Dionysius1: I agree with you and I'll do that too.

Even so some people are going to dislike the intrusion of computer analysis.

I have some sympathy because I like to think of chess as an art form, and that makes it intrinsically human. But there's no reason that I can see for not accepting a computer as a training tool, to help us be better artists.

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