Links

This form does not yet contain any fields.
    1948 World Chess Championship 1959 Candidates 1962 Candidates 2.c3 Sicilian 2.f4 Sicilian 2011 European Team Championship 2011 Russian Championship 2012 Capablanca Memorial 2012 Chess Olympiad 2012 European Women's Championship 2012 London Chess Classic 2012 U.S. Junior Championship 2012 U.S. Women's Championship 2012 US Championship 2012 Women's World Chess Championship 2012 World Rapid and Blitz Championships 2013 Alekhine Memorial 2013 Beijing Grand Prix 2013 European Club Cup 2013 European Team Championship 2013 FIDE World Cup 2013 Kings Tournament 2013 London Chess Classic 2013 Russian Championship 2013 Tal Memorial 2013 U.S. Championship 2013 Women's World Championship 2013 World Blitz Championship 2013 World Championship 2013 World Rapid Championship 2013 World Team Championship 2014 Capablanca Memorial 2014 Chess Olympiad 2014 London Chess Classic 2014 Petrosian Memorial 2014 Rapid & Blitz World Championship 2014 Russian Team Championship 2014 Sinquefield Cup 2014 Tigran Petrosian Memorial 2014 U.S. Championship 2014 U.S. Open 2014 Women's World Championship 2014 World Blitz Championship 2014 World Championship 2014 World Junior Championships 2014 World Rapid Championship 2015 Capablanca Memorial 2015 Chinese Championship 2015 European Club Cup 2015 European Team Championship 2015 London Chess Classic 2015 Millionaire Open 2015 Poikovsky 2015 Russian Team Championship 2015 Sinquefield Cup 2015 U.S. Championship 2015 Women's World Championship KO 2015 World Blitz Championship 2015 World Cup 2015 World Junior Championship 2015 World Open 2015 World Rapid & Blitz Championship 2015 World Team Championships 2016 2016 Candidates 2016 Capablanca Memorial 2016 Champions Showdown 2016 Chess Olympiad 2016 Chinese Championship 2016 European Club Cup 2016 Isle of Man 2016 London Chess Classic 2016 Russian Championship 2016 Sinquefield Cup 2016 Tal Memorial 2016 U.S. Championship 2016 U.S. Junior Championship 2016 U.S. Women's Championship 2016 Women's World Championship 2016 World Blitz Championship 2016 World Championship 2016 World Junior Championship 2016 World Open 2016 World Rapid Championship 2017 British Championship 2017 British Knockout Championship 2017 Champions Showdown 2017 Chinese Championship 2017 Elite Mind Games 2017 European Team Championship 2017 Geneva Grand Prix 2017 Grand Prix 2017 Isle of Man 2017 London Chess Classic 2017 PRO Chess League 2017 Russian Championship 2017 Sharjah Masters 2017 Sinquefield Cup 2017 Speed Chess Championship 2017 U..S. Championshp 2017 U.S. Junior Championship 2017 Women's World Championship 2017 World Cup 2017 World Junior Championship 2017 World Rapid & Blitz Championships 2017 World Team Championship 2018 British Championship 2018 Candidates 2018 Chess Olympiad 2018 Dortmund 2018 European Championship 2018 European Club Cup 2018 Gashimov Memorial 2018 Gibraltar 2018 Grand Chess Tour 2018 Grenke Chess Classic 2018 Grenke Chess Open 2018 Isle of Man 2018 Leuven 2018 London Chess Classic 2018 Norway Chess 2018 Paris 2018 Poikovsky 2018 Pro Chess League 2018 Shenzhen Masters 2018 Sinquefield Cup 2018 Speed Chess Championship 2018 St. Louis Rapid & Blitz 2018 Tal Memorial 2018 Tata Steel Rapid & Blitz 2018 U.S. Championship 2018 Wijk aan Zee 2018 Women's World Championship 2018 World Championship 2018 World Rapid & Blitz Championship 2019 Abidjan 2019 Aeroflot Open 2019 Biel 2019 Capablanca Memorial 2019 Champions Showdown 2019 Dortmund 2019 Du Te Cup 2019 European Championship 2019 Gashimov Memorial 2019 GCT Paris 2019 GCT Zagreb 2019 Gibraltar 2019 Grand Chess Tour 2019 Grand Prix 2019 Grenke Chess Classic 2019 Karpov Poikovsky 2019 Lindores Abbey 2019 Moscow Grand Prix 2019 Norway Chess 2019 Norway Chess blitz 2019 Pro Chess League 2019 Riga Grand Prix 2019 Russian Team Championship 2019 Sinquefield Cup 2019 St. Louis Rapid & Blitz 2019 U.S. Championship 2019 Wijk aan Zee 2019 Women's Candidates 2019 World Team Championship 2020 Candidates 2020 Chess Olympics 2022 Chess Olympics 2024 Chess Olympics 22014 Sinquefield Cup 22014 U.S. Championship 22016 Chess Olympiad 22019 GCT Zagreb 22019 Wijk aan Zee 2Mind Games 2016 2Wijk aan Zee 2017 60 Minutes A. Muzychuk A. Sokolov aattacking chess Abby Marshall Abhijeet Gupta Accelerated Dragon ACP Golden Classic Adams Aeroflot 2010 Aeroflot 2011 Aeroflot 2012 Aeroflot 2013 Aeroflot 2015 Aeroflot 2016 Aeroflot 2017 AGON Agrest Akiba Rubinstein Akiva Rubinstein Akobian Akshat Chandra Alejandro Ramirez Alekhine Alekhine Defense Aleksander Lenderman Aleksandra Goryachkina Alekseev Alena Kats Alex Markgraf Alexander Alekhine Alexander Beliavsky Alexander Grischuk Alexander Ipatov Alexander Khalifman Alexander Moiseenko Alexander Morozevich Alexander Onischuk Alexander Panchenko Alexander Stripunsky Alexander Tolush Alexandra Kosteniuk Alexei Dreev Alexei Shirov Alexey Bezgodov Almasi AlphaZero Alvin Plantinga Amber 2010 Amber 2011 American Chess Magazine Amos Burn Anand Anand-Carlsen 2013 Anand-Gelfand 2012 Anand-Gelfand World Championship Match Anand-Topalov 2010 Anastasia Bodnaruk Anatoly Karpov Anders Ericsson Andrei Volokitin Andrew Martin Andrew Paulson Android apps Anish Giri Anna Muzychuk Anna Ushenina Anna Zatonskih Anti-Marshall Lines Anti-Moscow Gambit Anti-Sicilians Antoaneta Stefanova Anton Korobov Anton Kovalyov apps April Fool's Jokes Archangelsk Variation Arkadij Naiditsch Arkady Dvorkovich Arne Moll Aron Nimzowitsch Aronian Aronian-Kramnik 2012 Arthur Bisguier Arthur van de Oudeweetering Artur Yusupov Arturo Pomar Ashland University football Astrakhan Grand Prix 2010 attack attacking chess Austrian Attack Averbakh Awonder Liang Baadur Jobava Bacrot Baku Grand Prix 2014 Baltic Defense Bangkok Chess Club Open Baskaran Adhiban Bazna 2011 Becerra beginner's books Beliavsky Ben Feingold Benko Gambit Bent Larsen Berlin Defense Biel 2012 Biel 2014 Biel 2015 Biel 2017 Bilbao 2010 Bilbao 2012 Bilbao 2013 Bilbao 2015 Bilbao 2016 Bilbao Chess 2014 bishop endings Bishop vs. Knight Blackburne Blaise Pascal blindfold chess blitz blitz chess Blumenfeld Gambit blunders Bob Hope Bobby Fischer Bogo-Indian Bohatirchuk Bologan Book Reviews books Boris Gelfand Boris Spassky Borislav Ivanov Borki Predojevic Boruchovsky Botvinnik Botvinnik Memorial Branimiir Maksimovic Breyer Variation brilliancy British Championship British Chess Magazine Bronstein Bronznik Brooklyn Castle Browne Brunello Bu Xiangzhi Budapest bullet chess Bundesliga California Chess Reporter Camilla Baginskaite Campomanes Candidates 2011 Candidates 2011 Candidates 2012 Candidates 2013 Candidates 2014 Capablanca Carlsen Caro-Kann cartoons Caruana Catalan Cebalo Charles Krauthammer Charlie Rose cheating Cheparinov chess and drugs chess and education chess and marketing chess books chess cartoons chess documentaries chess engines chess history chess in fiction chess in film chess in schools Chess Informant chess lessons chess openings chess politics chess psychology chess ratings chess strategy chess variants Chess24 Chess960 ChessBase DVDs ChessBase Shows ChessLecture Presentations ChessLecture Videos ChessLecture.com ChessUSA ChessUSA blog ChessVibes ChessVideos Presentations Chigorin Variation Chinese Chess Championship Chithambaram Aravindh Christian faith Christiansen Christmas Colin Crouch Colle combinations Commentary computer chess computers correspondence chess Corsica Cristobal Henriquez Villagra Cyrus Lakdawala Dan Parmet Danailov Daniel Parmet Daniil Dubov Danny Kopec Danzhou Danzhou 2016 Danzhou 2017 Dave MacEnulty Dave Vigorito David Bronstein David Howell David MacEnulty David Navara Davies Deep Blue Deeper Blue defense Dejan Antic Delchev Denis Khismatullin DGT errors Ding Liren Dirk Jan ten Geuzendam Dmitry Andreikin Dmitry Gurevich Dmitry Jakovenko Dominic Lawson Donald Trump Dortmund 2010 Dortmund 2011 Dortmund 2012 Dortmund 2012 Dortmund 2013 Dortmund 2014 Dortmund 2015 Dortmund 2016 Dortmund 2017 Doug Hyatt Dragoljub Velimirovic draws dreams Dreev Dunning-Kruger Effect Dutch Defense DVD Reviews DVDs Dvoirys Dvoretsky Easter Edouard Efimenko Efstratios Grivas Eltaj Safarli Emanuel Lasker Emory Tate en passant endgame studies endgames Endgames English Opening Ernesto Inarkiev Erwin L'Ami Esserman Etienne Bacrot European Championship 2015 European Club Cup 2012 European Club Cup 2014 European Individual Championship 2012 Evgeni Vasiukov Evgeny Bareev Evgeny Najer Evgeny Sveshnikov Evgeny Tomashevsky Exchange Ruy expertise Fabiano Caruana Falko Bindrich farce FIDE FIDE Grand Prix FIDE politics FIDE Presidential Election FIDE ratings Fier fighting for the initiative Finegold Fischer Fischer-Spassky 1972 football Francisco Vallejo Pons Fred Reinfeld French Defense Fritz 15 Ftacnik Gadir Guseinov Gajewski Gaprindashvili Garry Kasparov Gashimov Gashimov Memorial 2017 Gata Kamsky Gawain Jones Gelfand Gelfand-Svidler Rapid Match Geller Geneva Masters Genna Sosonko Georg Meier Georgios Makropolous GGarry Kasparov Gibraltar 2011 Gibraltar 2012 Gibraltar 2013 Gibraltar 2014 Gibraltar 2015 Gibraltar 2016 Gibraltar 2017 Giorgios Makropoulos Giri Go Grand Chess Tour Grand Chess Tour 2017 Grand Chess Tour Paris 2017 Grand Prix 2014-2015 Grand Prix Attack Greek Gift sacrifice Grenke Chess Classic 2013 Grenke Chess Classic 2015 Grenke Chess Classic 2017 Grinfeld Grischuk Grob Gruenfeld Defense Grünfeld Defense Gukesh Dommaraju Gulko Gunina Guseinov Gustafsson Gyula Sax Hannes Langrock Hans Berliner Hans Ree Harika Dronavalli Hastings Hawaii International Festival Haworth Hedgehog helpmates Hennig-Schara Gambit Henrique Mecking HHou Yifan highway robbery Hikaru Nakamura Hilton Hjorvar Gretarsson Hort Horwitz Bishops Hou Yifan Houdini Houdini 1.5a Howard Staunton humor Humpy Koneru Ian Nepomniachtchi Icelandic Gambit Ignatius Leong Igor Kovalenko Igor Kurnosov Igor Lysyj Igors Rausis Iljumzhinov Ilya Makoveev Ilya Nyzhnyk Imre Hera Informant Informant 113 Informant 114 Informant 115 Informant 116 Informant 117 Informant 118 Informant 119 Informant 120 Informant 121 Informant 122 Informant 124 Informant 125 Informant 126 Informant 127 Informant 128 Informant 129 Informant 130 Informant 131 Informant 132 Informant 133 Informant 134 Informant 135 insanity Inside Chess Magazine Ippolito IQP Irina Krush Irving Chernev Ivan Bukavshin Ivan Sokolov Ivanchuk J. Polgar Jacek Oskulski Jacob Aagaard Jaenisch Jaideep Unudurti Jakovenko James Tarjan Jan Gustafsson Jan Timman Jan-Krzysztof Duda Jay Whitehead Jeffery Xiong Jennifer Yu Jeremy Silman Jim Slater Jimmy Quon Joe Benjamin Joel Benjamin John Burke John Cole John Grefe John Watson Jon Lenchner Jon Ludwig Hammer Jonathan Hawkins Jonathan Speelman Joop van Oosterom Jorden Van Foreest Jose Diaz Jose Raul Capablanca Ju Wenjun Judit Polgar Julio Granda Zuniga junk openings Kaidanov Kaido Kulaots Kalashnikov Sicilian Kamsky Karen Sumbatyan Karjakin Karpov Karsten Mueller Kasimdzhanov Kasparov Kateryna Lagno Kavalek Keanu Reeves Ken Regan Keres KGB Khalifman Khanty-Mansiysk Grand Prix Kim Commons king and pawn endings King's Gambit King's Indian King's Tournament 2010 Kings Tournament 2012 Kirsan Ilyumzhinov KKing's Gambit KKing's Indian Klovans Komodo Komodo 11 Komodo 12 Korchnoi Kramnik Krishnan Sasikiran Kunin Lajos Portisch Larry Christiansen Larry Evans Larry Kaufman Larry Parr Lasker Lasker-Pelikan Latvian Gambit Laurent Fressinet Laznicka Lc0 Le Quang Liem LeBron James Leinier Dominguez Leko Leon 2017 Leonid Kritz lessons Leuven Rapid & Blitz Leuven Rapid & Blitz 2017 Lev Psakhis Levon Aronian Lilienthal Linares 2010 Linder Liviu-Dieter Nisipeanu Loek van Wely Lombardy London 2009 London 2010 London 2011 London Grand Prix London System Lothar Schmid Luke McShane Macieja Magnus Carlsen Main Line Ruy Malakhov Malcolm Gladwell Malcolm Pein Mamedyarov Marc Arnold Marc Lang Marin Mariya Muzychuk Mark Crowther Mark Dvoretsky Mark Glickman Mark Taimanov Markus Ragger Marshall Marshall Gambit Masters of the Chessboard Mateusz Bartel Matthew Sadler Maurice Ashley Max Euwe Max Judd Maxim Matlakov Maxim Rodshtein Maxime Vachier-Lagrave McShane Mega 2012 mental malfunction Mesgen Amanov Michael Adams Miguel Najdorf Mikhail Antipov Mikhail Botvinnik Mikhail Golubev Mikhail Osipov Mikhail Tal Mikhail Zinar Mikhalchishin Miles Mind Games 2016 Minev miniatures Miso Cebalo MModern Benoni Modern Modern Benoni Moiseenko Morozevich Morphy Movsesian Müller Murali Karthikeyan music Nadareishvili Naiditsch Najdorf Sicilian Nakamura Nana Dzagnidze Nanjing 2010 Natalia Pogonina Navara NDame football Negi Neo-Archangelsk Nepomniachtchi New In Chess Yearbook 104 New York Times NH Tournament 2010 Nigel Short Nihal Sarin Nikita Vitiugov Nikolai Rezvov Nils Grandelius Nimzo-Indian Nino Khurtsidze NNotre Dame football Nodirbek Abdusattarov Nona Gaprindashvili Norway Chess 2013 Norway Chess 2014 Norway Chess 2015 Norway Chess 2016 Norway Chess 2017 Notre Dame basketball Notre Dame football Notre Dame Football Notre Dame hockey Nov. 2009 News Nyback Nyzhnyk Oleg Pervakov Oleg Skvortsov Olympics 2010 Open Ruy opening advice opening novelties Openings openings Or Cohen P.H. Nielsen Pal Benko Palma Grand Prix 2017 Parham Maghsoodloo Parimarjan Negi Paris Grand Prix Paris Rapid & Blitz passed pawns Paul Keres Paul Morphy Paul Rudd Pavel Eljanov pawn endings pawn play Pawn Sacrifice pawn structures Pentala Harikrishna Pesotskyi Peter Heine Nielsen Peter Leko Peter Svidler Petroff Philadelphia Open Philidor's Defense philosophy Phiona Mutesi Pirc Piterenka Rapid/Blitz Polgar Polgar sisters Polugaevsky Ponomariov Ponziani Potkin poultry Powerbook 2011 Praggnanandhaa Rameshbabu Prague Chess Train problems progressive chess prophylaxis Puzzle Rush Qatar Masters 2015 QGD Tartakower QQueen's Gambit Accepted queen sacrifices Queen's Gambit Accepted Queen's Gambit Declined Queen's Indian Defense Rabat blitz 2015 Radjabov Radoslaw Wojtaszek Ragger rapid chess Rapport Rashid Nezhmetdinov Rathnakaran Kantholi rating inflation ratings Ray Robson Raymond Smullyan Regan Reggio Emilia 2010 Reggio Emilia 2011 Reshevsky Reti Reuben Fine Rex Sinquefield Reykjavik Open 2012 Reykjavik Open 2017 Richard Rapport Richard Reti Robert Byrne robot chess Robson Roman Ovetchkin rook endings RReggio Emilia 2011 rrook endings RRuy Lopez RRuy Lopez sidelines Rubinstein Rubinstein French Rudolf Loman Rudolf Spielmann rules Ruslan Ponomariov Russian Team Championship Rustam Kasimdzhanov Ruy Lopez Ruy Lopez sidelines Rybka Rybka 4 S. Kasparov sacrifices Sadler Saemisch Sakaev Sam Collins Sam Sevian Sam Shankland Samuel Reshevsky Sao Paulo/Bilbao 2011 Sao Paulo/Bilbao 2012 satire Savchenko Savielly Tartakower Schliemann Scotch Four Knights Searching for Bobby Fischer Seirawan self-destruction Sergei Tiiviakov Sergei Tkachenko Sergey Erenburg Sergey Fedorchuk Sergey Karjakin Sergey Kasparov Sergey Shipov Sevan Muradian Shakhriyar Mamedyarov Shamkir 2015 Shamkir 2016 Shamkir 2017 Shankland Sharjah Grand Prix 2017 Shenzhen 2017 Shipov Shirov Short Shreyas Royal Sicilian Sinquefield Cup sitzfleisch Slav Smith-Morra Gambit Smyslov So-Navara Spassky spectacular moves Speelman sportsmanship Spraggett St. Louis Chess Club St. Louis Invitational St. Louis Rapid and Blitz 2017 stalemate Staunton Stephen Hawking Stockfish Stockfish 4 Stonewall Dutch Suat Atalik Super Bowl XLIV Susan Polgar Sutovsky Sveshnikov Sveshnikov Sicilian Svetozar Gligoric Svidler Svidler-Shankland match sweeper sealer twist Swiercz tactics Tactics Taimanov Tal Tal Memorial 2009 Tal Memorial 2010 Tal Memorial 2011 Tal Memorial 2012 Tal Memorial 2012 Tanitoluwa Adewumi Tarjan Tarrasch Tarrasch Defense Tashkent Tashkent Grand Prix Tbilisi Grand Prix 2015 TCEC TCEC Season 10 TCEC Season 11 TCEC Season 12 TCEC Season 13 TCEC Season 14 TCEC Season 15 TCEC Season 8 TCEC Season 9 TED talks Teimour Radjabov Terekhin The Chess Players (book) The Simpsons The Week in Chess Thessaloniki Grand Prix Three knights Tibor Karolyi Tigran Gorgiev Tigran Petrosian Tim Krabbé time controls time trouble Timman Timur Gareev Timur Gareyev Tomashevsky Tony Miles Topalov traps Tromso Olympics 2014 TTCEC Season 14 TWIC Tyler Cowen types of chess players Ufuk Tuncer Ultimate Blitz Challenge underpromotion Unive 2012 University of Notre Dame upsets US Championship 2010 US Championship 2011 US Chess League USCF ratings USCL V. Onischuk Vachier-Lagrave Valentina Gunina Vallejo value of chess van der Heijden Van Perlo van Wely Varuzhan Akobian Vasik Rajlich Vasily Smyslov Vassily Ivanchuk Vassily Smyslov Velimirovic Attack Vera Menchik Veresov Veselin Topalov video videos Vidit Gujrathi Vienna 1922 Viktor Bologan Viktor Korchnoi Viktor Moskalenko Vincent Keymer Viswanathan Anand Vitaly Tseshkovsky Vitiugov Vladimir Fedoseev Vladimir Kramnik Vladimir Tukmakov Vladislav Artemiev Vladislav Kovalev Vladislav Tkachiev Vlastimil Hort Vlastimil Jansa Vugar Gashimov Vugar Gashimov Memorial Walter Browne Wang Hao Wang Yue Watson Wei Yi Welcome Wesley Brandhorst Wesley So Wijk aan Zee 1999 Wijk aan Zee 2010 Wijk aan Zee 2011 Wijk aan Zee 2012 Wijk aan Zee 2013 Wijk aan Zee 2014 Wijk aan Zee 2015 Wijk aan Zee 2016 Wijk aan Zee 2017 Wil E. Coyote Wilhelm Steinitz William Golding William Lombardy William Vallicella Willy Hendriks Winawer French Wojtkiewicz Wolfgang Uhlmann Women's Grand Prix Women's World Championship World Champion DVDs World Championship World Cup World Cup 2009 World Cup 2011 World Cup 2011 World Junior Championship World Senior Championship WWesley So WWijk aan Zee 2012 Xie Jun Yasser Seirawan Yates Yermolinsky Yevseev Yoshiharu Habu Yu Yangyi Yuri Averbakh Yuri Razuvaev Yuri Vovk Yuri Yeliseyev Yuriy Kuzubov Zaitsev Variation Zaven Andriasyan Zhao Xue Zhongyi Tan Zug 2013 Zukertort System Zurab Azmaiparashvili Zurich 1953 Zurich 2013 Zurich 2014 Zurich 2015 Zurich 2016 Zurich 2017
    « Books! | Main | Instructional Material »
    Saturday
    Aug032019

    Open Thread

    This won't be an "ask me anything" thread, as I've never been interested in making this blog about me personally and am not about to start doing so now, as the doors are slowly creaking to a close. But I'm open to questions about all sorts of chess matters, and - with some trepidation - maybe we can take a careful step or two in the direction of philosophy and religion/Christianity as well. Politics, as usual, is a no-go. I have striven, however imperfectly, to make this a place where people can go to enjoy chess and their fellow chess players. Despite many solicitations, I have kept advertisers off the site, and in general have done my best to make sure that the only thing that will annoy my readers is me - not that that was ever my goal, of course. (Except maybe, a tiny bit, when pushing Notre Dame football.)

    So: if you have questions, whether for me or your fellow readers - or both - have at it. In the meantime, I'll start working on posting books for sale over the next few days.

    PrintView Printer Friendly Version

    EmailEmail Article to Friend

    Reader Comments (15)

    Hi Dennis, could you please make a post summarising your recommendations over the years? It may be a fair bit of work but I'd be very interested in getting something like a top 5 in each category e.g. tactics or endgames.

    [DM: That's WAY too much work. More importantly, there's no sense to such lists without getting more fine-grained. A good tactics book for a GM would be impenetrable to a mid-level club player, and what would be good for the latter would be impenetrable for novices. (Nor would there be any use in the GM's using works that would be effective for novices or average club players.) The same can be said about most other kinds of books.

    What I can say is this: for masters and up, you could do a lot worse than getting everything by Dvoretsky and Aagaard. For everyone, buying autobiographical best-game collections of great players is useful. There are many other great books in addition to these, but they are likely to be person- and book-relative.]

    More importantly, thank you for your blog. I have been a semi-regular reader for a long time and enjoyed your work on chessvideos.tv back in the day. I still have your epic Quick Ruy series and it was my go-to for preparing the Jaenisch for the tournament I just finished.I also found my way over to chesslecture.com thanks to you.

    [DM: You're welcome!]

    August 4, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterIsh

    Favorite book of all time?

    [DM: Chess book? Not sure if there is one single book I can point to. (Other than this one, of course. :)) When I was a kid, it probably would have been Fischer's *My 60 Memorable Games* or Tal's *The Life and Games of Mikhail Tal*. "Regular" book? Leaving aside the Bible, which is sui generis, maybe Dostoevsky's *The Brothers Karamazov*, if I have to pick only one.]

    August 5, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterDaniel

    I thought chess is the work of the devil for Christians - at the very least it takes your mind off spiritual matters...

    [DM: I think there were a couple of old-timey guys who said that, but it's hard to see why that would be the case, unless one rejects all leisure or competitive activities out of hand. The majority of the Christian tradition has not done this, and I think they're right about this. It's true that one can have an inordinate love of chess, but one can have an inordinate love for all sorts of things; chess is hardly unique in that respect.]

    August 7, 2019 | Unregistered Commentermarc

    I wonder if you have any stories of your interactions with chess luminaries we may know. I've read in your posts that you met and played Tal for example. Anything to share there? Did you meet other giants? How about important people in US chess? Did you meet William Lombardy or Ken Smith for example.

    [DM: I've had interactions, sometimes momentary, sometimes much more involved, with lots of GMs over the years. Kasparov, Karpov, Spassky, Fischer (almost) - to name some world champions, and practically everyone in U.S. chess. This may merit its own post, as there's just so much that could be said here! (Not promising anything, though.) Just to mention the two you noted: I saw Smith at one or two big Las Vegas tournaments in the early '80s, but had no interaction with him. But I was able to chat with Lombardy a few times at the Manhattan Chess Club in the '90s, and he even mentioned me in his autobiographical Understanding Chess: My System, My Games, My Life.]

    August 7, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterTEF

    If you were Garry and were writing, "My Great Successors" who'd make your top 3 players (in order) of the pre-Carlsen era chapter?

    [DM: In temporal order, or order of strength? I'll assume the former, and list the three lineal world champions: Kramnik, Anand, and Carlsen. I'd add a mini-chapter on Topalov within the Kramnik chapter, as he was a dominant figure from around 2004 to 2010-11 who barely lost two world championship matches.]

    August 10, 2019 | Unregistered Commenternminwalla

    I have a question, can you be educated (in the world) and religious? Are the two comparable?

    [DM: If not, then what about Boyle, Kepler, Newton, Leibniz, Euler, Lavoisier, Linnaeus, Priestly, Maxwell, Mendel, Pasteur, Kelvin, Lemaitre, Dobzhansky, Wheeler, and Collins - just to name a few highlights from the sciences over the centuries. (Tons more here: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Christians_in_science_and_technology - and of course this isn't mentioning Jews, who have been heavily represented in the sciences and the broader intellectual world (not that all Jews practice the religion), or adherents of other religions.) There are countless intellectuals in non-scientific disciplines who are Christians (and Jews, etc.) as well, so on the principle that actuality proves possibility, the answer to your first question is a clear yes.

    I'm guessing that your second question was supposed to be, "Are the two compatible?" As someone who is a practicing Christian with multiple graduate degrees, you won't be surprised to hear me say that they are. Is there a reason to think otherwise? Some religious beliefs are incompatible with some scientific theories, and/or with some philosophical claims made about science. But that doesn't mean that those philosophical claims are correct, scientific theories can and often are wrong or at least in need or revision, and major religions like Christianity often admit of multiple frameworks on secondary issues. (There are, for instance, a huge number of theories within Christianity about what the first chapters of Genesis teach about the age of the earth and the origin of human beings - and this even pre-dates Darwin.)

    I think, then, that it's more helpful to ask about particular positions, whatever they are, are they true and are they compatible with some particular religious doctrine? And be aware of the distinction between scientific claims and covert philosophical claims masquerading as science. (Scientism in particular is not science, but a bit of philosophy - and dubious philosophy at that, as it is self-refuting.) There is a huge literature on the subject, and I'll mention a couple of works by Christian philosophers that you and others might find of interest: Alvin Plantinga's *Where the Conflict Really Lives* and J.P. Moreland's *Scientism and Secularism*.]

    August 10, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterGoodhumor

    Is there a philosophical argument that proves the existence of God?

    [DM: I assume this question was superseded by your follow-up, so I'll address that one instead.]

    August 10, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterLeonard

    Is there a philosophical argument that proves the existence of the God of traditional Christianity?

    [DM: There are a couple of challenges here requiring a bit of fine-tuning (pun intended). First, *prove* is rather strong. For instance, I think that naturalism cannot give a successful ontological account for moral facts. Let's suppose I'm right: does this prove that naturalism is false? No, because the naturalist could say, "OK, fine, I was wrong. There are no moral facts. Moral beliefs don't correspond to truths in the world in the way that beliefs about an object's mass do correspond to truths about real-world physical items." It is always possible to bite the bullet and affirm something strange or unpleasant when one doesn't like the conclusion of an argument.

    Second, I'm inclined to think that Christian theism - like any robust belief system - is held, intellectually speaking, because it seems to the believer to make the best sense of all the data: of reason, of evidence, of experience, of history, of psychology, and so on. I don't mean that it makes the best sense of every part of the data, taken individually, but that on balance it makes the best sense. So it seems to me that a cumulative case argument is the best way to proceed.

    Ok, suggestion time. First of all, I'm a fan of the kalam cosmological argument, as developed, presented, and defended by William Lane Craig. I have some minor quibbles around the edges, but think it gets the project off to a good start. Second, I like the fine-tuning argument, and heartily recommend *A Fortunate Universe* by Luke Barnes and Geraint Lewis. Barnes thinks that the evidence most strongly points towards a God, while Lewis hesitates and feels more comfortable with the multiverse. They agree that all the other theories fail, and push each other at the point where they disagree. A very interesting work that I'm sympathetic to but still trying to evaluate is Edward Feser's *Five Proofs for the Existence of God*.

    Those books all argue for theism. I think that part of the story, at least for those of us in what's called "the West", which includes even New Zealanders, is the difficulty faced by naturalism. On that score, I think its difficulty in accommodating ethics (see above), the philosophical presuppositions of science, and even rationality itself (see for example Alvin Plantinga's evolutionary argument against naturalism, or Victor Reppert's *C.S. Lewis's Dangerous Idea*) is a big problem. A small book you might find interesting is J.P. Moreland's *Scientism and Secularism*.

    Finally, the ultimate point of Christian theism is not intellectual box-checking - though I confess I enjoy that at least as much as the next person. It is to commit oneself to a person, to Jesus, whom Christians believe is God in the flesh. There is no importance to Christianity, except as a historical curiosity and a sociological matter, if Jesus wasn't resurrected from the dead. A very good, long article by philosophers Timothy McGrew and Lydia McGrew make a careful, sophisticated case for the resurrection, here. If you only read one thing from this whole list, this should be it.]

    August 11, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterLeonard

    I'm a beginner/intermediate-level player who struggles enormously with calculation, specifically with visualization. I know the basic tactical patterns and I have solved many problems, but I still have difficulty visualizing positions that are not on the board, sometimes even after only 2-3 moves. I find it especially hard to "unsee" pieces that have been moved or captured, so even fairly simple end positions are tough for me to visualize if the board I'm looking at is densely packed. Most books on tactics that I own do not even mention visualization; they simply provide examples and exercises to improve pattern-recognition and imagination. Those that do mention it say very little, to the effect of "solve many problems/try playing blindfold and eventually you will just be able to move the pieces in your mind." Is that the best one can do? Or are there more effective/targeted ways to go about developing this skill? I would really appreciate help on this, because it is the most frustrating part of chess-playing for me and yet it is so fundamental. Often I go wrong in completely straightforward positions--e.g.,positions where there are just a bunch of exchanges on a single square--because the board gets blurry after only a few moves of calculation. Do you have any suggestions?

    [DM: "Beginner/intermediate" is vague. Do you have a tournament rating? At any rate, I'll offer three bits of advice. First, the one you mentioned and didn't seem to like: blindfold chess. Have you tried it? You don't have to become Timur Gareyev for it to benefit you. Second, and related, try to do those calculations blindfold. What I mean is this: sometimes, when at least some players calculate, it's abstract. We don't exactly visualize the position; rather, we just sort of trust that this piece is here, that piece is there, and so on. When you have the kind of position and situation you're talking about, look away from the board, maybe close your eyes, and in that case *do* try to visualize the variations. Third, work on endgame studies, starting from ones with fewer pieces and build up to studies with more pieces. In other words, build up your skill at keeping track of more and more pieces.]

    August 13, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterAdviceSeeker

    Hi, with the Cathedral in France burning a lot, is namesake Notre Dame U doing anything to help or contribute?

    [DM: The University of Notre Dame promised to give $100k to rebuilding efforts (see https://www.nbcchicago.com/news/local/notre-dame-rebuild-donation-school-indiana-university-508653901.html). I wouldn't be surprised if they eventually gave even more.]

    August 15, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterFrank

    Hi Dennis. I play daily at lichess, mostly 3-1, 3-2 or similar times (I don't have the patience to play longer control times!). I am around 2100 there. My question is the following. It happens to me on endless occasions that, instantly after I made a move, I see that it is a blunder. Do you have a tip for trying to avoid this?
    Best,
    Uriel

    [DM: There are lots of ways of avoiding the perils of moving and realizing afterwards that it's not a blunder. For instance, you could make your move and then distract yourself, so you don't notice anything about your last move. :) Assuming your wish is to avoid the blundering part of the blunder-and-notice sequence, here are a few suggestions:

    1. See if there are patterns. Do you have a "glass jaw" when you're getting attacked? Are you ignoring your opponent's threats? Is it that you're only paying attention to your own ideas? The solution might require a psychological adjustment on your part. Do they come only when you're short on time, or are you fully capable of blundering in any clock situation? Are there certain times of the day when you're sloppier? (Are you a morning person or a night owl?) Are you hungry or about to sink into a food coma?

    2. Work on your basic tactics. Doing things like puzzle rush, or zipping through a bunch of relatively elementary tactics (e.g. something like the old Reinfeld 1001 Sacrifices and Combinations books) can help, both in general and as a warm-up before playing.

    3. Get used to it! Hopefully the preceding recommendations will help, but if you saw the St. Louis Rapid & Blitz (and many other blitz events) you'll have noticed that even the world's very best players occasionally turn into boneheads. If even they can't always avoid blunders, neither can we. They're going to happen. Do what you can to avoid them, but have a sense of irony about them and your dreams of infallibility. Errare humanum est!]

    August 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterUriel

    Thanks for the tips. Without a doubt, your first one cannot fail.
    Jokes aside, the answer to your first three questions in point 1 is a big "yesss". Maybe the case that most happens to me is the third one.
    As an example, I intend to play "A", assuming my opponent plays, say, "X", "Y" or "Z". But, it turns out that he/she plays "W", and I still play "A", which turns out to be a disaster.
    By the way, I only play at night, when work is done and kids are in bed, and after dinner. And it is true that if I am still playing late and I get hungry, my play becomes more "sacrificial"...
    I will try to find a pdf of Reinfeld's book and give it a try.
    Best,
    Uriel

    August 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterUriel

    Dennis, let me ask you another one.
    I started playing more than 20 years ago, and since then I play very few openings (with black, which I prefer, Caro-Kann, Chebanenko Slav, or QGA if I want a quicker defeat). My question is about the CK and the French. I think it is ok to say that the pawn structures in the CK and the French are essentially the same, right?. But, the CK has the (big?) advantage that the bad bishop is outside the pawn chain.

    So, why isn't the CK a "better" opening than the French? (surely it isn't, since many GM's play it; in fact, maybe it is even more popular).
    The only answer I could give myself over the years is that in the CK, many times you play c6 and c5, thus waiting a tempo. But, even taking that into account, I still think the CK is better than the French. I know I am wrong, but I would like if you could tell me why.
    Pity I started writing you when you are about to leave.
    Best regards,
    Uriel

    [DM: The structures are often the same if White plays the Advance vs. the CK. It is very popular, but not obligatory. There are also three drawbacks/potential drawbacks for Black in the CK: the loss of a tempo (the c-pawn takes two moves to reach c5 - a point you made), the bishop can be a target on f5, and the bishop is sometimes missed on the queenside in lines where Black has played a subsequent ...e6 and White rips lines open with c4. Black isn't getting something for nothing.]

    August 18, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterUriel

    Many thanks for your answer; I'd like to follow up, if I may. Your description of calculating in the abstract captures my problem precisely.

    To clarify: I'm a casual player--I've never played any tournament games and have no rating. However, I have consumed a lot of chess instructional content over several years. Though I'm not very good, I have a lot of knowledge and so I don't think "beginner" by itself is the right label. (I used to play rated blitz on chess.com and managed to clear 1900). Second, I'm quite happy to practice visualization through blindfold chess and I have indeed tried it a few times. My gripe was with books that simply say "play blindfold chess" without giving any further guidance about how to do it. Perhaps I can ask here?

    By way of background, without a board, I can currently play ~10-15 sensible moves blindfolded before losing the position. I've also tried playing against very low level computers--board and notation window are visible but the pieces are not--and against them I can get in ~25 good moves with strong positions (between +5 and +10 in my favor), but then I lose track of things and rarely finish. Here's what I'd like to know:

    First, when you're playing blindfold without a board, do you literally have before your mind's eye every single square and piece, colors included? I can, if I concentrate, visualize the pieces and squares of a small and familiar configuration (e.g., a castled kingside fianchetto), but when I try to see everything--especially in a middle game/endgame, when pieces are all over the place--I get overwhelmed. How does one build up, step by step, to seeing the whole board? And what does a blindfolded player actually try to see?

    Second, when you're playing with a board but without pieces, do you actually imagine likenesses of the pieces on the squares? If so, do you try to picture simplified versions of a chessbase piece-set, or something else? I can usually get by for a little while just by knowing openings and reasoning things out (e.g.: "It's a Slav and black moved the light-squared bishop too early, so it's a good idea to play Qb3.") But it's really hard for me to actually see the pieces on the board. In fact, I only manage to visualize something when I "zoom in" to one small area and ignore what's going on elsewhere. Are there ways to get better at visualizing the pieces? And am I right that you should be trying to picture some kind of image of each piece?

    Much thanks in advance.

    [DM: From what I've read and learned from conversations, people visualize (or "visualize") in different ways. I myself don't have anything like a mental image; it's much more abstract. (I'm not sure if I have aphantasia, but I probably lean in that direction.) Still, in some ways it's like visualizing: even though I'm not really "seeing" an image of the board, when I turn my attention to a certain sector I remember the pieces in that area, just as if I were looking at the board and focusing on them rather than the rest of the board. I don't think it's terribly important, whether you're seeing a camera-like image or just remembering abstractly. It'll work either way, and in both cases, since you're not actually seeing, you're dependent on your memory, which can be trained. So practice!

    Let me add one exercise to what I mentioned in the first response. An exercise I've done, and have occasionally recommended to students, is to get a collection of short games, e.g. Irving Chernev's 1001 Best Short Games of Chess, and mentally replay several of them each day. The Chernev book is ideal for this, because they start with the shortest games and gradually get longer until they reach 24 moves by the end of the book. An added twist is to try to figure out the winning tactic before it happens.

    Give those a try, and for more suggestions and info on blindfold chess your best bet is probably blindfoldchess.net.]

    August 20, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterAdviceSeeker

    I am curious what would be your pick of best book for the rank beginner. I learned the game from Reinfeld's "The Complete Chess-player" and think it is still a good choice if only so that when a beginner finishes the book he may read descriptive notation.

    [DM: I believe Russell Enterprises re-released it in algebraic notation. As for my recommendation, I'm not particularly familiar with this sub-genre, but off the top of my head I'd want to take a look at Patrick Wolff's *Chess for Dummies*. Others more familiar with recent works (my days as a beginner took place in the '70s) are very welcome to chime in.]

    August 25, 2019 | Unregistered CommenterTEF

    PostPost a New Comment

    Enter your information below to add a new comment.
    Author Email (optional):
    Author URL (optional):
    Post:
     
    Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>