Taking Your Time

March 2, 2017

Here’s a position that I got to against the computer. What do you think about it? What is White’s plan? Should he attack on the kingside or the queenside or the center? Should he go fast or go slow? Position after 14. … b5. White to move. FEN: r4rk1/2pqbpp1/p1n1p2p/1p1nP3/3PN3/2PQ1N2/PP1B2PP/3R1RK1 w – – 0 15 Shredder […]

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PRO Chess League Regular Season Complete

February 23, 2017

Wow, that was fast! It seems like just yesterday that I was writing a post about the first week of the PRO Chess League. Now the season is already over! That’s because it was only seven weeks long. Next week the playoffs will begin, and for people who haven’t been paying attention previously, this might […]

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Alternative Chess Facts. Plus, Reality TV!

February 13, 2017

In honor of our new “alternative facts” universe, I decided to delete my chess rating against Shredder (the computer program) and start over with no rating. After 925 games against it, I was unsatisfied with the fact that my rating had gone below 2000. It just wasn’t right! The alternative fact is that my rating […]

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“The Edge of the Truth” (Computer go and chess)

February 5, 2017

Last year I wrote a couple posts about AlphaGo, the computer go program developed by a team at Google that beat Lee Sedol (one of the world’s top players), 4-1, in a five-game match. If you’ve forgotten, you can read my post-match thoughts here. For several months nothing more was heard about the program, but […]

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My Worst Game Ever Against the Computer

February 3, 2017

Since my last post was about my best game (possibly) against the computer, fairness requires that I now show you my worst game, which I played yesterday. As ghastly as it is, there is still a fascinating train-wreck-in-slow-motion beauty to it. Shredder — Dana Mackenzie (40 moves/10 minutes) 1. e4 e5 2. Nc3 Nf6 3. […]

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Happy Halloween … Oops, Wrong Time of Year

January 18, 2017

Yesterday I wasted a ton of time playing against Shredder on my computer, and losing game after game… Finally I “dumbed the computer down” to a rating of 1977 just so that I would have a chance to win. And what do you know? I got a chance to play probably my nicest combination ever […]

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A New League in Town!

January 17, 2017

I’m sure it hasn’t escaped the attention of my readers that a new, worldwide chess league has come into existence. The old US Chess League is defunct, and in its place stands a NEW and BETTER chess league, called the PRO Chess league. (Yes, PRO is capitalized; no, I don’t know why; yes, I’m having […]

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Life Masters, Pretty Pieces

January 2, 2017

Welcome back! I’m officially ending my blog hiatus today, but I have to warn you that posts will continue to be very sporadic for the next month or two. My book still isn’t finished yet, and that has to be the #1 priority. Still, I will post here when I can, especially when I have […]

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The Kitten Awards

December 25, 2016

Hi everybody! My chess blog is not really back yet — I’m still working on my book — but I thought that on Christmas I could take a little time out for a Kitten Awards Show. As long-time readers of this blog know, my wife and I take care of foster kittens for the Santa […]

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Shocking Chess News

November 28, 2016

While the chess world waits for the epic twelfth game of the Carlson-Karjakin world championship match, there was another shocking piece of chess news halfway around the world that I’m still trying to digest. If you remember, the last serious post I wrote before going on hiatus was on the “Most Amazing Game of 2016,” […]

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