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Showing posts from November, 2011

Lousy logical reasoning and familiar patterns

. . . Munich said: An idea: There are two sorts of difficult puzzles: First, the ones with lots of calculation, and deep variations. Second, the ones which could have been easy if you simply had spoted it. The 2708 CT Blitz rated (your example) is a puzzle of the second category: the relativelz easy ones that for some strange reason almost nobody gets correct. I would love to have some puzzles sorted into these two categories. I could imagine it is worth to study the character of the "easy" puzzles, that are very difficult. 90% of the 2200 - 2300 rated puzzles at CT fall in the category "easy" imo. This weekend I worked out about 30 of them while looking what is going on in my mind. I noticed that the patterns are well known enough usually, but I fail to concoct a flawless logical reasoning. That is strange, since I usually score very high in tests of logical reasoning. This means that the ability is there in principle, but something is la

Scenario's

. . . I organized my list with questions. The result is: tactical scenario's. For instance for the position of the previous post: Hunt the King. Prevent him to flee. Win a piece that he has to sacrifice to prevent mate. Add pieces with tempo to the equation. Mr. Z gave me an article with citations of 49 grandmasters who gave advice on how to improve in chess. I counted their advice for you. Study annotated games 19 Study openings 11 Don't study openings 6 Study endgames 10 Don't study endgames, it's a hoax 1 Work hard 8 Play games 8 Play stronger players 7 Mental preparation 6 Tactics 6 Study theory books 6 Analyse your own games 5 It's hopeless if you are not good by now 4 Get a coach 3 Be patient during play 3 Continuously beware 2 Drink beer 2 Visualization 2 Base your plans on pawns 1 Physical preparation 1 Don't underestimate your opponent 1 Love the game 1 No sex during tournaments 1 The grandmasters were

It's not rocket science

. . . . After a long journey of reasoning everything seems to fall in the right place. Guess what, it is much simpler than I thought. Why didn't I see it before? It is the only logical way. Patterns, concepts, visualization, speed, it is all irrelevant. I have been analysing about 100 problems rated 2000 - 2300 at Chess Tempo. For 90% of the problems I found that my pattern recognition, my knowledge of tactical concepts and my visualization were more than sufficient to solve the problems. By far. Yet I made mistakes often. What is the nature of those mistakes? Take the following problem from Chess Tempo (diagram below, rated 2216). I suggest you first try to solve it at Chess Tempo here so that my ideas will come across better. Before reading further. . . . Black to move. There are only 4 moves in a row which you must make correctly. None of these are hard to find. None of them is illogical. None of them requires more than a medioc

Going in circles, so I'm making progress

After lengthy discussions with mr. Z I decided to see if I could bring some organization in the list of concepts I created while describing the solution of hundred very complex tactical problems. These are the sections which emerged after sorting: Mate in 1 Checks Captures Threats Duplo attack Clearance Overworked piece I didn't see that one coming! Much to my surprise I'm back at CCT again.  . . . I often said that this blog is going around in circles and talks about the same topics everytime. I prefer to look at it as spirals, though. Everytime I reach the same point, but with additional knowledge. The facts that the same topics keep reoccuring time and again after carefull reasoning, means that the solution must lie within those topics. It is like a chess combination. You know the moves, but you have to find out the order. All this is thus very much unlike this picture above which is NOT A SPIRAL but consists of circles instead.

Odds and ends

. . . Visualisation. Why do I think there is a relation between visualization and concepts? You can find the position that caused the revelation here . No DIY. Why do I think that you should start with the solution and not with the problem? The main reason is that you can find no new things in your own mind within a reasonable time . Since there are only old things in your mind by definition . New things have to come from outside. Remember that I'm talking here about people who have quite some tactical exercises under the belt. Who have gained 250 points by tactical exercises and stall. Myself for instance. Of course you try to find the solution yourself first in order to create some emotional bond with the solution which helps to make more impression on your brains. But you should not ransack your mind for new knowledge which isn't there. That's simply a waste of time. Of course it is just an invitation to not spill your time by an "experie