Friday, June 30, 2006

chess.emrald craze

stayed up most of night here, "trying to get it back"... 274 problems, rd=18.6 at 7am est today, but temposhlucker hard at work in europe, he has an rd=15. i must go to sleep and he is just starting! himmmm? he is 2nd out of 1200 persons, i am a meer 8th.

a bad session. hit 1470 and couldnt make it back... so fought all the way, blery eyed as they say... 48 failed/218 success= 266 problems or 81.955% is my worst session in MONTHS. when you start to do a LOT of problems, to get rating points back is VERY hard, very difficult.

what goes here besides the ego? we burnish at times like this chess tactics and quick recognition into our brains in the hopes that latter we will 'have it' in OBP or over-the-board play.

my 8th day at work in the last 9 days, so today i am off and can return fresh!

Thursday, June 29, 2006

temposchlucker, note to

dear dirk, i really enjoy your blog and i really enjoy you. thank you. i have so much to say that ive been silent. im not shy or reticent, but more intending to be thoughtful.

blogger raises many questions. for example, do we (or you, or me, or anyone) write for ourselves? for others? for applause? for learning? to concretize one's own process while benefiting others? all that...

now more basic but specific stuff: what i like about you is you are half a step--i think--ahead of me in chess and chess study, i surmise. youve also done tons of great work at 45,000 problems. wow. 10,000 buddhas bow to you sir.

ive read your plans here. all very good. i totally agree with you and appreciate your recognition of the whole elemental part of chess separate from tactics and timed exercises.

indeed, many an advanced player only moved forward or advanced there skills to a final more lofty level by studying endgames, middle-endgame transitions. have you recently looked at Shereshevsky's Endgame Strategy? my chess coach told me not only do CTS, then start CT-Art, but to get Muellers Secrets of Pawn Endgames and Endgame Strategy.

Secrets of Pawn was recommended not only as a foundation of ending theory, but as a way to practice the most detailed and objective process of calculation.

fyi, when i came back to CTS, i literally did not remember how to move the piece, just like my first day. don't laugh. it was an advanced problem, good i thought, i know how to do this... but coundn't do it, so i paged back to register a 'failed' THEN was able to recall you touch the moving piece, then the square moved to. of course, this was after 250 CTA exercises, so brain ruts firmly worn into new places, so had to relearn. there is a skill or craft at CTS seperate from chess itself as a user that practice improves. maybe shows in rapid chess as distinct from standard.

my rating fell oddly. despite 2030 elo at CTA, i fell from 1474 (really 1491 but their error from outage, as last day wiped out from last week) to 1435. ouch. but my point is, you can calculate all you want but if you cannot 'just wipp it out', you don't have all the tactics learned. that is to say you can have advanced calculating skills and chess knowledge, but speed of access is a totally different skill. i need both.

so im resolute to start each night after work CTA with exercises as non-time critical warm up, THEN do a stint on CTS, but remember, im doing both so no big numbers visible.

so we have A. CTA for raw calculation or accuracy or, in your case Renko is it called?, then B. CTS for speed and the clock element, and then C. endgame practice.

i read chernev's practical chess endings for a year, doing the whole book without a board. very hard to learn to do that mentally and fix chess pieces mentally. now i am finishing Averbakh's Chess Endgames: Essential Knowledge. very good stuff.

D. classic games: i am going through the 62 games of chernev's The Most Instructive Games of Chess Every Played WITH A PGN VIEWER, without reference to annotations, then VERY SLOWLY annotating them myself. my friend Yasser says this is very good. if you are near Amsterdam, maybe you met him?

E. of course, i also own key books by Dvoretsky, Aashagard, Stohl, Silman, Seirawan, Tisdahl, etc, but the point is, your focus on elemental things in parallel to tactics, tactics, tactics is, i feel, the right way. Endgame Strategy is so lovely, so perfect and elegant in this way.

time to get ready for work. i will copy this and post at my blog also if you dont mind?

david, in seattle

Wednesday, June 28, 2006

CT-Art 3.0 Exhaustion

Well, here goes: one more story, one more chess improvement fanatic slogs out late night exercise, more blery eyes gone wild, one more stone rolled up the fruitless hill of Sysyphus?

CT-Art is just wonderfull. I am on day five of practice module, with lots on level two continuing. 348 solved plus lots of supplementals. ELO 2024 for 72% solved: 1st set: 94% 2nd: 78% 3rd: 70%, 4th: 66%, 5th: 66% (as I was typing this my cat 'Shruti' [Sanskrit for Veda's] just ran for a bug on the face of my refrigerator, fyi but mostly I think that he just wants to eat again, soon my friend, soon!), 6th: 85%, 7th: 45% (ouch), 8th: 75%, and lastly 9th: 42%. What is it about those harder more consecutive problems that so forces our better efforts??

I don't plan to go so fast on the 2nd circle as I already said, but, just want to 'just get through with' the first circle.

Before bed I will do some, check the futures on CNBC late here on the west coast, then maybe read some Rheinhold Messner's "All 14 Eight-Thousanders" whereby he climed Everest, K-2, etc, all without supplemental oxygen. I'm sure some business folk here in America have done near equivalent in their offices, but that is a story for another day or another blog.

Tired but must re-start chess emrald! David

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

How sweet the joy! or ChessTacticsServer (CTS) is up and running! Kisses and hugs! Sweet odes to Joy. "Sing us of muse, oh rosy finger dawn", Homer.

I started CT-Art 3.0 (CTA) two days after the outage (broken site message: 'Invalid dataBase' error message inexplicably posted without explanation starting last Tuesday) and the absence of CTS really for me placed the contrast with CTA into resolution.

CTS is more advanced but does not penalize slow, careful, deliberate 'deep thinks' as we say in chess. At the same time, CTS penalizes slowness, and also places our work into the context of a community of like minded persons in pursuit of Caissa (Muse or Goddess of chess). While CTA also ranks users by ELO, CTS compares us to others off of a web hosted application.

I plan to do the seven circles. Since I did 11,500 problems on CTS since March with an RD of around 18 before the outage with 83.19% correct, I do NOT feel much pressure to go to slowly as many do when first starting CTA, since I have already learned many of the basic patterns. Then again, I am still only on the second series...

My goal is to do the first circle fairly fast, THEN chew hard on the second circle. Most start slowly, I think, then try to speed up. I will do that in the third circle. My goal is familiarity to start out and just 'bang' the first circle--rather than laborious, finicky slowness... Or as my personal friend Yasser Seirawan likes to say it, "...till you burnish these patterns into the circuitry of your brain".

This is my first blog posting. This place is way cool. David