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Saturday, November 29, 2008

Problem # 53

It is Black to move - for the solution see our puzzle answer page.


Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Review: The Genius and the Misery of Chess

Perhaps when the author wrote the manuscript in his native language, all flowed well and errors were minimal. But somewhere between the original manuscript and the final edited version in print today, countless quirks appear.

The premise of the book is quite promising. Forty-seven players, ancient and modern, are examined with brief profiles, a picture and one or more games. Each profile is short, generally up to six pages in length. My personal chess library is full of books on openings, tactics, endgame strategy, puzzles and single-player biographies, but doesn’t contain a single volume profiling a multitude of players. Even Kasparov’s My Great Predecessors series required multiple volumes.

The book has a number of "ups" and "downs" - for the next week my review appears at the main ChessCafe book review page, and it is also permanently archived here.

A young Sammy Reshevsky


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Problem # 52

It is White to move. Your suggestion?

The solution can be found here.


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Problem # 51

It's White to move and win. What do you suggest?

You can find the answer here.


Thursday, November 13, 2008

2008 Chess Olympiad

The 2008 Chess Olympiad, in Dresden, Germany, is underway. There is excellent coverage, including easy links to live games, at the official website. In addition, ChessBase, as usual, is full of great photos and information. Susan Polgar also has extensive coverage at her blog. For an always-unique perspective, see Mig Greengard's Daily Dirt blog.

I enjoyed watching the game today between Peter Svidler and Viktor Kortchnoi as it occurred. The transmission was smooth both from a broadband and a dialup connection. Here is the live games page.


Wednesday, November 12, 2008

The Future of Scholastic Chess, Part Two

In last month’s column, we began looking at why chess “dropouts” occur during and after high school. Eighteen chess personalities prominently involved in the world of scholastic chess were consulted, and their responses were presented. We continue with the second part of this series this month.

At the end of the article, I've summarized some of the key issues, and I give my two cents as well. Part One can be found here, and Part Two is here.


Review: Attacking Manual 1

It's full of typos, but it also belongs on the table (open, in use) of any aspiring chessplayer. It's Jacob Aagaard's Attacking Manual 1, and you can read my review of it here.


Sunday, November 09, 2008

Boy and his puppy play chess; surprise winner

Cute video showing a nine-year-old boy playing chess with his well-trained puppy. However, when the young boy steps out of the room for a moment, the puppy takes advantage. Watch and enjoy here!


Sunday, November 02, 2008

TV Video About 10-Year-Old Margaret Hua

Margaret Hua is a tiny ten-year-old St. Louis girl who was one of the U.S. players at the recent World Youth Chess Championships in Vietnam. This video, from local television station KETC, highlights this special young woman:


St. Louis Chess Club: 4-Minute Video

Here's a nice four-minute video about the new St. Louis Chess Club, which has been selected to host the 2009 U.S. Championship as well as the 2009 U.S. Women's Championship:

The video doesn't discuss these major events - it simply discusses the purpose of the club and illustrates the beauty of the club itself.


Saturday, November 01, 2008

Abby Marshall on the Mind Sport Games in China

Varuzhan Akobian, Iryna Zenyuk, Alexander Shabalov and Abby Marshall; photo: Chess Life Online

Ever-interesting WFM Abby Marshall writes about her experiences in China at the 1st Mind Sport Games, at Chess Life Online.

Here's a brief sample of what Abby has to say:

The first day of any trip, no matter how good or bad it actually is, is always one of the most exciting days. How cool is it to wake up halfway around the world? So I’ll start there. Unfortunately, I instantly knew breakfast was going to be a big problem cause it ends at 10, but luckily jet lag saved me and I woke up reasonably early, was excited and took a bunch of dumb pictures of the room, and then fell back asleep and missed breakfast anyway. Well, the extra sleep definitely helped me because the American team made history by being, according to the hotel, the first tourists to walk to Tiananmen Square! We thought this was strange, because Jenn asked how long it would take and they said “one hour.” Huh. So by the third hour we are all probably thinking the same thing (one hour, maybe the only thing that could have been one is…day?), but this turned out to be one of the greatest decisions we made. We stopped in a park with lots of beautiful stone statues, and then in a cute tea shop where everyone drank endless amounts of Jasmine while Jenn read Cosmopolitan. The articles were in Chinese, but had teasing English subtitles (“how to have a blingy lifestyle”).


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