Saturday, April 19, 2014

I'm so giddy right now - ChessTempo has come out with a mobile version of the site (  For about 5 years now, I've wanted to solve ChessTempo problems on my phone, but it just wasn't feasible to use CT on a phone.

Recently, I've been able to use my tablet to solve problems on the go, but there are still times when I'm waiting around and I only have my phone with me and I wish I could play on CT.  Now it's finally here.

I tested it out on my tab as well and it's phenomenal!  I had my tab set up so the board was maximized as much as possible, but despite that, I still had to scroll up and down after each problem.  Now, with the mobile site that problem is fixed.

There appears to be some minor kinks that Richard (the site admin) will have to work out.  He's requesting feedback at this forum thread.  The issues I've noticed have already been identified.

Friday, April 11, 2014

"How To Judge a Chess Position"

Stumbled on this video today.  I really liked it - I need to find more videos like these.

His advice:
1. count the pieces
2. compare the kind positions
3. compare the pawn structures
4. compare the relative piece activity of the players
5. work out if there are any threats
6. make an assessment, look for moves

Monday, April 07, 2014

The Immortal Game by David Shenk

Maybe it was late December or early January when I started The Immortal Game.  I've been nibbling at it over the past 3 months and I finally finished it last weekend.

Because I nibbled over 3 months, I don't have a whole lot of specific recall.  Rather, I just remember that it was a good book that took a 10,000 foot view of chess over a millennium and a half.

The book goes back and forth between recounting history and the evolution of chess and the immortal game.

I learned how chess moved east to west and how the game had such an impact on culture and society.  I learned of the different eras of chess and how the game was developed and viewed over hundreds of years.

The book flows very well.  It was not boring; either from a chess player perspective or a non-chess player perspective.

I'm not going to get much into reviewing this - there are lots of reviews available.  But if you're looking for a good, broad historical chess book, this would be a good start.