Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Chess Sever cannibalism

There are so many chess-online/trainings-server...

chess.com, chesscube, chessity, icc, fics, ideachess, chessgym, chess.emrald.net, chessgames.com, chessmoon.com, international chess school, chessclublive, chesslive, chessfriends.com, fide online arena, Remote chess academy, chess ebook, chessvideos.tv, red hot pawn, chesshere.com,
letsplaychess.com, gameknot.com, net-chess.com, caissa.com, chessworld.net, chess.net, chessanytime.com, thechesswebsite.com, improveyourchess.com, chessmagnetschool.com
... and hundreds more

They all offer more or less the same:

-Some educational texts
-Some educational Videos
-Online chess
-Puzzle Training
-Opening Explorer

And now i found the next one . chess24
Nothing new, nothing better..

Well chess24 offers few for free and try to charge a lot for few, thats a little uncommon.
The good aspect of the inflation of chess-server is the explosion of free offers. At youtube you find hundreds of free educational chessvideos, no need to pay for videos anymore, its impossible to watch all of them in one life. No need to pay for online chess, no need to pay for chesspuzzles... on a different server you find the same for free AND BETTER. Chess.com had the Tactic Trainer as premium feature, chesstempo (and many others!)  does offer that for free (AND BETTER), therfore the endgamet raining  is premium there ...
And as more server as less customers per server... silly "game".
They destroy each others chances to make any money..
Just chess server cannibalism

Monday, September 8, 2014

New Board Vision Exercises : Find all Checks


I was doing my "Mate in 1" Training  for several weeks now, the improvement is moderate :/ . These exercises are realy not easy. My skill-improvement-hypothesis is : it has to be ( almost silly ) easy to become a skill (  automatized thinking ).
So i did create an easier task and seemingly it helps :


The "Find all Checks" - Trainer

 Press the Start-Button and you will get Chesspositions with Black on top  where ou have to select all checks ( for white and! black )

 Qh2+ 
1 "Variation"
 Qb8+ Qc8+ Qd8+ Qd7+ ...
Rc7+ Rd5+
10 "Variations"

Nd6+ Nc5+....
Ooops: i missed Qxd5+
8 "Variations"

You may "cheat" by pressing "Help".

After some "Find all Checks" Training i made a nice improvement in  "Mate in 1" Performance.
Strongly recomended: make the Board Vision exercises of chessgym.net firs

Play here.




Saturday, August 30, 2014

Break Through Plateaus

Most adult chess player don't improve in chess, they reach and stay at a rating plateau. So did i. But chess has so many "elements" : Calculation, Pattern, Board Vision, Visualisation, Positional Understanding, Tactical Vision, Opening, Endgames, Middle game, Attack, Defence, Concentration,....That is too much to learn at once. So i did put my main attention to Tactics. I solved hundred thousands of tactic puzzles and .. reached a rating plateau ( after a few thousand puzzles ). Tactic has so many "elements" : Mate, Material Gain, Pawn promotion, Pattern recognition, Calculation,... Seemingly still too much to learn. So i did put my attention to Board Vision. I did reach a "nice" level in the attack training at ChessGym but not a really high ( "GM" ) level. And here i made an experiment: i did force myself to use strictly a Thinking method: For 2 hours of training i was first looking for the queens ( is the white queen attacked, what pieces are attacked by the white queen ) then the rooks then the bishops then knights, pawns and finally the kings. After that i made a biiig improvement ( without strict thinking process ) in "attack" at chessgym and reached a "real high level".

I think there might be 3 possible reasons why this thinking process did help me improve further
  1.  A systematic thinking process improves the efficiency anyway
  2.  A thinking process dissect the "big" problem "Attack-Board-Vision" to smaller, easier Problems like "Queen-Attack-Board-Vision"... Such easier Problems should be easier to learn too.
  3. I'm thinking of an effect like the dual-n-back training. Thinking at something else simultaneously , did create "more skill"
  4. Maybe that's just a coincidence of some type
 Now i did start to implement a thinking process in my chess training as much as i can. It is really not that easy. My first step is, to constantly think about how i actually think during solving chess problems and try to improve that thinking step by step.

...

Well, i did break an other plateau at ~ 2060 in Tactic Trainer ( an Ipod App) .

 Is it my new way of thinking? Or is it my improved Board Vision? Did i get slower ( then the score improves anyway)? Luck? ...

I continue to write ( and use ) Board Vision Training Programs which support my thinking process. I think my "critical piece" training will help me a lot.
( A critical piece is as often attacked as defended. Such pieces can be successfully forked / double attacked.)

Friday, July 25, 2014

New Board Vision Exercise : 80 000+ Mate in 1 Puzzles

I made a new webpage with 83879 "non trivial" mate in 1 puzzles ( play here)
This is a high level board vision exercise ( or a low level tactical vision exercise). You have to find all possible mate in 1 and click at the moves destination squares. I suggest to do the attack, defense and check exercises of Chessgym.net and Fritz first ( see the links at the right side of this page ). There are 83879 different mate in one exercises available. The problems here have been created using these :"The Art of Direct Mate in Two Moves" by Eduardo Sadier



Examples:

Qd1# ; so click at d1


Nf6# (double check) ; so click at f6


Nc5# ( check by the rook at a6) ; so click at c5


Qf5# or Re2# ; so click at e2 and! f5


  • "Info"
    is link to this page
  • "Done"
    is the number of mates you have found so far
  • "Total"
    the number of available exercises
  • "ProbNo"
    is the current Problem Number
  • "Castle"
    always "-" because no casteling is allowed
  • "EP" 
    always "-" because the last move was never a double move by a pawn
  • "Mates / min"
    thats to improve! This value is only visible after you have "Done" more than 10 mates 
If you want to "cheat" press the "Help" - Button
Start here

Saturday, July 12, 2014

GessGym.net Tactic vs Positional and Tactic vs Board-Vision



ChessGym offers Tactic Puzzles and Positional Puzzles. Some users can be found with their ratings in both: the Tactics-Ranking and in the Positional-Ranking

Positional Understanding starts with a tactics-rating of  1299 / 1,648 ?




ChessGym offers Board Vision Exercises with rating and ranking too:

Its written that the number of chess related chunks is growing exponential with the rating of the chess player. I think board vision is based on chunks ( of the "contacts") too.

I hope that these elementary board vision chunks can help to develop even more and better chunks ( to get a better tactic performance ). I will try to reach 50 in "Attack"

 Its seemingly easier to see which piece is defended than to see which piece is attacked.

Wednesday, July 9, 2014

Positional Chess Server - Positional Puzzles - Chessgym

Intro
There are many Tactic Servers with many many tactic-puzzles ( well,.. these are combinations and not tactics.. ) with a rating to monitor our "progress". There are endgame puzzles with ratings too, but Positional Puzzles ( well, these are "non cobinational-puzzles ..) had been  missing.

Positional trainingtools 
"Chess Mentor" at chess.com ( premium user )
"Guess the move" at chessgames.com ( premium user )
"Guess the Move" at chesstempo.com ( premium user ) 
"Guess the move"  free software
"Chess Hero"  free software


Chessgym.net
But now there are the "Positional" puzzles at chessgym.com with ratings and rankings for free! Chessgym offers different trainingtools, including chess-memory, board vision and "tactics" training. The ratings and rankings can give us hints where our personal weaknesses might be and where we might/should improve.