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Member since May-28-11 · Last seen Sep-07-17
Just a former chess player.

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   jnpope has kibitzed 654 times to chessgames   [more...]
   Aug-20-17 Harry Nelson Pillsbury
jnpope: <<MissScarlett: That would be fair comment, except for> Mar-24-16 jnpope: I hope to have a new edition out this year.> Hope is not a promise or a guarantee. But I do have a 2016 edition (digital), one copy, sitting on my laptop. Feel free to swing by Ann Arbor and I'll ...
   Apr-13-17 jnpope chessforum (replies)
jnpope: Baltische Schachblätter, 1910 v12, appears to be the only other placeholder entry.
   Apr-06-17 Biographer Bistro (replies)
jnpope: <I'm sure both <jnpope>...> Don't count on it. This really isn't my century of expertise. ;-)
   Mar-27-17 Paris (1900) (replies)
jnpope: I suspect the submitter meant to say that "initial draws" are not shown. At Paris 1900, if a game was drawn it did not count and a second game had to be played. The second game, if drawn, did count. Someone should redo/reformat the crosstable with the complete results (IMO).
   Mar-18-17 Max Judd (replies)
jnpope: After further review I would like to revise my statement; "Boy, that early pic of Judd sure looks a lot like Paulsen". In the pix I've compared Judd has a more pronounced ear lobe spacing from ear to skull, and he also has a widow's peak hairline, which this photo also shows. The pix
   Mar-14-17 Staunton - Saint Amant (1843) (replies)
jnpope: Earlier this month I finished a CA treatment of the 1843 Staunton-Staint Amant match: I asked readers of the Bistro if anyone possessing superior French language skills than myself could spot-check my translations of Saint Amant's annotations ...
   Mar-08-17 Owen vs De Vere, 1872 (replies)
jnpope: Does anyone have a source for this game?
   Mar-06-17 Anderssen - Steinitz (1866)
jnpope: I suspect Bell's meant to state £50 (no other source made a £500 claim). Most sources say £100 a side with the £50 purse for the winner going to Steinitz according to the Field.
   Feb-21-17 Lasker - Steinitz World Championship (1894) (replies)
jnpope: I have just updated the Chess Archaeology match page for this event: It now includes the match conditions as printed in the New York Sun, added Pillsbury's annotations where available, and more detailed post-match bickering by Steinitz (who ...
   Jan-23-17 Zukertort vs Steinitz, 1886
jnpope: <ephesians: <Tough ending, hard to evaluate. Maybe Steinitz should have drawn this anyway.>> Lomonosov 7-piece tablebase indicates the position after 68.Rxh4 is a draw. Steinitz's 68...Nf5 is a blunder that allows White to mate in 58(!). Although I really can't fault ...
(replies) indicates a reply to the comment.

Chess Archaeology

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Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: We're good to go then. Super.

Don't expect to sent too many updates, but it's nice to know the channel is open. Thanks again.

Premium Chessgames Member
  offramp: Could you answer a question at Alexandre Louis Honore Lebreton Deschapelles ?
Premium Chessgames Member
  Tabanus: <jnpope> Perhaps wrong of me to reveal the CG name of Thomas Niessen, but on the other hand, he did not make any ref. to the Popert page!

I'm no longer an editor. I deleted a bio made by another person (to enhance my point on off-topic posting on player pages), and replaced it with "Louis Stompers, American liberal jerk". The "house trolls" (and I'm not using the ignore list) now showed their touching concern for player bios, that I was a liability, etc. And CG did not take my point. Or pretended not to. So I asked them to remove me as an editor. Unfortunately there are no other sites that I know of having player pages with bio sections.

Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: I've been having difficulty reconstructing the following corrupt gamescores... I figured I would throw them out here to see if anyone would like to take a swing at solving them:

Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: < I've been having difficulty reconstructing the following corrupt gamescores...>

No kidding!

Tidbit A:

Black's move 3, and White's 15 suggest difficulties ahead.

Black's 34 is the end of the line, but 34. Q to B3 is a good last ditch effort.

That gets one to move 36 and the end of any claim to a possible factual reconstruction.

As for the fiction which follows no real comment can suffice - but reality has never hindered my efforts before (cf. various Bistro suggestion of late)...


1.e4 d5 2.exd5 Qxd5 3.Nc3 Qa5 4.d4 Bf5 5.Nf3 Bg4 6.h3 Bh5 7.g4 Bg6 8. Ne5 e6 9.Bg2 c6 10.Bf4 Nf6 11.Qd2 Bb4 12.Nc4 Qd8 13.O-O-O Na6 14.a3 Be7 15.Rde1 Nd5 16.Nxd5 cxd5 17.Ne5 O-O 18.Bf1 Rc8 19.Nxg6 hxg6 20. Bxa6 bxa6 21.Re3 Bf6 22.Rc3 Qe7 23.Re1 Qb7 24.Ree3 Qb6 25.Red3 Rxc3 26.Qxc3 g5 27.Be3 Qd6 28.Qd2 Qe7 29.h4 g6 30.hxg5 Bg7 31.Bf4 f6 32. gxf6 Qxf6 33.Be3 Qf3 34.Qd1 Qf6 35.f4 Re8 36.Rd2 Qd8 37.Rh2 Qd6 38. Qd3 Qe7 39.Qxa6 Rb8 40.Qd3 Qb7 41.b3 Qe7 42.a4 Kf7 43.Rh3 Rh8 44.Rxh8 Bxh8 45.f5 gxf5 46.gxf5 e5 47.dxe5 Bxe5 48.Kd2 d4 49.Bf2 Bf4+ 50.Kd1 Be3 51.Bxe3 Qxe3 52.Qxe3 dxe3 53.Ke2 1-0


Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: This is rather hopeless - but having foisted it upon us, you deserve the harvest...

Tidbit B:


1.e4 e5 2.f4 d6 3.Nf3 Nf6 4.Nc3 Bd7 5.fxe5 dxe5 6.Nxe5 Be6 7.d4 c6 8.Bc4 Bxc4 9.Nxc4 b5 10.Ne5 b4 11.Nb1 Nxe4 12.O-O Nf6 13.Qd3 Be7 14.Nd2 O-O 15.h3 Nd5 16.Ndc4 Bf6 17.Qg3 h6 18.Bd2 a5 19.Rae1 Ra7 20.Re4 Kh7 21.Rg4 Rg8 22.Re4 Re8 23.Rg4 h5 24.Re4 g6 25.Ne3 Qb6 26.Kh1 Nxe3 27.Bxe3 c5 28.Qf4 Ra6 29.Qh6+ Kg8 1-0


I did manage to construct a nice tactical position after 25...Qb6

Bang (kibitz #183)

Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: Argg... there was a "B2" section to B game I forgot to give a link for...

Ok, I just combined B and B2 and uploaded a "complete" B game. This is the main thing that makes this game hard to decipher as printed.

Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: Are you going to post the "complete" B game?

And reveal the sources of the clips?

(I notice the wily hiding of player names.)

If it was me I would include such games with special care - including comments about the difficulties of transcribing, and also giving source reference(s).

I would even be inclined to include the raw transcription of the descriptive notation, as a comment, at the point where the game goes off the rails.

Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: B is posted as complete (hit refresh in your browser if you are still seeing the old image). You can also "hack" the URL and add a "2" to B.jpg (to become B2.jpg) to see the last couple of moves).

Sources and names are currently being withheld as it is part of ongoing research.

<If it was me I would include such games with special care - including comments about the difficulties of transcribing, and also giving source reference(s).

I would even be inclined to include the raw transcription of the descriptive notation, as a comment, at the point where the game goes off the rails.>

Are you looking at my manuscript? (checking my room for hidden cameras now). That's exactly how I approached it. However, if at all possible, I'd like to present a "solved" version of the games.

Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: <Zanzibar>: Your reconstruction to the A-game is similar to my own, the key differences are:

I went with 15.Rhe1 (14-ply analysis from Rybka suggests the sequence between White's 15th and 23rd moves are marginally stronger if 15.Rhe1; also, it keeps the rooks "linked" after 18.Bf1), but admittedly this could go either way.

The next difference is you have 37.Rh2 Qd6 38.Qd3 and I went with 37.Qf1 Qd6 38.Rh2. While your sequence makes use of "Q to Q3" for White, I felt that it was just a typesetter's duplication error of Black's move, otherwise the g6-pawn is left hanging when Black plays 38...Qe7.

Then we are identical until the last few moves... you have 49...Bf4+ 50.Kd1 Be3 51.Bxe3 Qxe3 52.Qxe3 dxe3 53.Ke2 (which is appealing even if it adds a move pair), whereas I went with 49...Qb4+ 50.Ke2 Bf6 51.Qc4+ Qxc4 52.bxc4.

Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: Expanding upon my crazy idea posted elsewhere...

Keep the World Championship match at a twelve "point" maximum (so we can keep the same schedule for the sponsors, etc.).

The purse is split into two parts, 40% for the players as a base, and the remaining 60% is broken up into twelve 5% chunks for the winner of each "point".

Players start the day with the classical game, if that ends in a tie, they reverse colors and play a best of three action-like mini-match (30 minutes each side+30 sec/move). If that match ends in a tie, colors are reversed again and now they play a five game rapid mini-match (15 minutes each side + 15 sec/move), if that ends in a tie they reverse colors and go to a seven game speed mini-match (10 minutes+10 sec/move each), and if that is somehow a tie, reverse colors again and play a 9 game blitz match (5 minutes+5 sec/move). If at any point one competitor wins one of these mini-matches they score that days' "point". If after all these mini-matches they are still tied then they split the "point" and purse for the day.

Of course there would be some appropriate breaks between mini-matches to eat, rest, recover, etc., just so long as the "point" is resolved in the same day. And as always, if the 12-"point" match ends in a 6-6 tie the champion retains the title.

If the match is "over" early on (in regards to the title), the players still have an incentive to keep fighting for each days' portion of the purse.

Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: 2016 Markov tournament results (10 passes, 1000 games against each opponent per pass):

Avg Score/Player
22633.7 Carlsen (2014 Wch)
18913.9 Anand (2014 Wch)
18795.1 Morphy (1857 1st American Congress)
17532.0 Zukertort (1883 London)
17114.2 Pillsbury (1895 Hastings)
16732.8 Kolisch (1867 Paris)
16712.3 Morphy (1858 v Harrwitz)
15328.2 Morphy (1858 v Anderssen)
14008.2 Morphy (1858 v Lowenthal)
12160.5 Steinitz (1883 London)*
11898.3 Staunton (1843 v St. Amant)
9571.6 Steinitz (1866 v Anderssen)
9563.7 Anderssen (1851 London)
9332.9 Harrwitz (1858 v Morphy)
8920.9 Lowenthal (1858 v Morphy)
8335.0 McDonnell (1834 v Bourdonnais 6th)
8168.7 Bourdonnais (1834 v McDonnell 5th)
8012.5 Anderssen (1866 v Steinitz)
7487.6 St. Amant (1843 v Staunton)
7079.5 Anderssen (1858 v Morphy)
6077.2 Philidor (1788 v various)†
4033.5 Deschapelles (1821 v various)‡
3930.8 Bourdonnais (1834 v McDonnell 6th)
3657.5 McDonnell (1834 v Bourdonnais 5th)

* incomplete, 23 of 32 games used (so far)
† incomplete, 6 of 16 games from Mar/Apr 1788
‡ small sample, only 6 known games

More on how this was done can be found here:
jnpope chessforum

At some point I will publish the entire project (code and methodology), probably after I add in more World Championships. I'm currently creating matrices for 1972 Spassky and Fischer (I'm only up to game 11). I will re-run this again once I have Steinitz 1883 and Spassky-Fischer added to the mix.

Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: From the Fischer forum:
<<saffuna:> And that's why, if computer program's are analyzing the relative strength of great players in different eras, that moves made after a player has a decisive advantage should not be considered.>

I was going to post a response there, but decided to do it here to shed some light over my methodology.

In some historic cases (and perhaps modern cases) there are situations where a player actually blows a decisive advantage, perhaps due to time pressure, etc., so I found that I really did't want to ignore moves. I went down the path of truncating games after a certain eval, but found I wasn't getting results that represented the actual match/tournament results for historic games.

Once I had figured out that what I really wanted was to determine the strength of a player based on his ability to obtain and maintain a winning advantage, and not the accuracy of their play, it was fairly easy to create cap-values for winning and losing.

What I ended up with in my methodology was to just "cap" evals over +3 at +3 (and under -15 to -15, this was so I could make use of games played at odds for Philidor and Deschapelles). So if a player has a +8 eval and it drops to +5 it doesn't count against the player as he is still maintaining a winning advantage, however, if he drops below +3 then it gets factored back into things as a possible "error". I run a two-factor test to determine "errors" by comparing move made against prior move/eval and against best move/eval which helps compensate for horizon effect due to ply-depth, before getting added to the Markov matrix.

Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: Hi, <jnpope>...

Let's try dropping the suggestion here to start -

I believe there's a problem with the <American Chess Bulletin (ACB) (1914) v11> linked at <chess archeology>:

It's the version from Princeton, but much, if not all, seems corrupt to me.

Luckily, Haithi also has the Harvard version of the issue, which seems OK.

If you could be so kind as to doublecheck me on this, and perhaps update your links, I would be obliged.

OK, thanks.

Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: Quick followup:

Compare doing a search on <Jasnogrodsky> for the two different versions.


Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: I have updated the ACB entries on the CA library page. Thanks for info <Z>.
Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: Hi ya,

Just wondering about your WSZ (1909) link over at CA:

This doesn't look like a viewable copy. Is one available?


Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: Maybe you meant this link?

Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: Nope. I didn't mean that link because it didn't exist at the time I created the page. Hathi and Google continually add things. At the time I created the updated library page all Google had was that placeholder link.

I'm glad to see Hathi finally got around to adding the book (which will bubble up into Google soon).

Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: <jnpope> then there's lots of other gaps with non-viewables books aren't there?

Anyways, I think you should mark off the non-public domain (or, rather, the non-viewable) links somehow - to save me a trip.


Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: The original entry was in a box with a grey background to denote its placeholder status (which I just removed when I updated the link). If you notice any new additions feel free to mention them here and I'll add them to the library.
Premium Chessgames Member
  jnpope: Baltische Schachblätter, 1910 v12, appears to be the only other placeholder entry.
Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: Right-o <jn> - will pipe up as the occasion merits.

We both know it's tough keeping up with these moving targets.

Premium Chessgames Member
  zanzibar: Hi, I've sent you email with some additional articles for the O'Keefe Timeline.

(Four days of Chicago Tribune coverage of <Vienna (1899)>).

Hope you can get them in as updates.


Premium Chessgames Member
  MissScarlett: Uploaded a couple of Pillsbury games from the same simul:

Pillsbury vs J F Ramos, 1903

Pillsbury vs S Mlotkowski, 1903

Do you have the full date?

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