Monday, July 16, 2007

BCC is on a roll

Note added: to those who find DG's humor offensive, don't watch the following classic Chappelle bit: .
(note the full video is here, but of lower quality and with the first minute cut off).

I'm sure it's not news to most, but over at BCC Weblog there is a wonderful series of answers to a chess questionnaire, from excellent players. What am I learning? One, they are really paranoid about saying what openings they like. Perhaps one person has directly answered the question about favorite openings.

My favorite bit so far is from Alex Cherniack (2200+ USCF). It reminds me of hisbestfriend's criticisms of Euwe's wonderful Master vs Amateur (and expresses very well why I wasn't convinced by those criticisms):
My primary mode of training has always been playing over whole games on a chess board from books, with detailed annotations (not Informant symbols) from world-class players. Such books are becoming more difficult to find, because all the analysis in today's publications is verified (and increasingly manufactured by) chess engines. It's hard to learn from "perfect" chess literature! It's interacting with human ideas on a page, discerning the mistakes, and writing the corrections in the margins, that makes me improve the most.
It would be interesting to know what books Cherniack recommends (other than the 1953 Zurich book, which he recommends very highly).


Blogger Unknown said...

i've enjoyed reading all the people who answered the questionnaire...that was a brilliant thing you let loose on the chessblog universe....

7/16/2007 10:45:00 AM  
Blogger Blue Devil Knight said...

Thanks: they have become a lot of fun, and have introduced a new measure of how "into" blogging someone is: how long it takes them to respond.

Note: being into blogging and being psychologically healthy are likely inversely correlated....

7/16/2007 11:13:00 AM  
Blogger funkyfantom said...

I notice that Mr. Cherniak complained about his opponents looking up his prior games on the web right before
his game ( even 20 minutes after the clock started). I sympathize- this is a lame thing to do and makes one long for the old pre-computer days.

OTOH, the guy still wouldn't even say if he plays the Sicilian or French against e4. Considering that his history is so web-available, it seems kind of petty to not answer the question.

7/16/2007 04:45:00 PM  
Blogger Robert Pearson said...

I just posted mine--and I wasn't even tagged. Thanks for putting it up, as it has produced a lot of very interesting human interest chess material!

7/16/2007 05:42:00 PM  
Blogger Loomis said...

Looking up any game after the clock starts is against the rules.

7/16/2007 07:27:00 PM  
Blogger takchess said...

I find Loomis point to be an interesting one. I am assuming the opponent had not shown up in the playing hall and the clock was started by Cherniak which is his right to do. Is it still illegal for him to be studying lets say a chess book. Anyone have a rule book handy?

7/17/2007 07:51:00 AM  
Blogger Loomis said...

I don't have the most recent rulebook, but I'd bet these rules are roughly the same:

Rule 20B: Use of recorded matter prohibited. During play, players are forbidden to make use of handwritten, printed, or otherwise recorded matter. While the penalty is at the discretion of the director, a forfeit loss is usually ruled if the material is relevant to the game while a lesser penalty or warning is common otherwise.

There are still two points that are not concretized by this rule. 1) Is it during play if one player has started the clock and the other hasn't yet shown up to the baord? 2) Are your opponents previous games relevant to the current game before any moves have been made?

I would argue that it is during play if the clock has been started. Rule 16N. Beggining of the round: ... clocks should start promptly at the beginning of the round. If feasible, the director should give a warning and then announce that play must begin.

My guess is that most directors would consider the 20 minute clock deficit penalty enough. Though I doubt in any of these cases it's provable that the player was researching his opponents games in a database.

7/17/2007 11:58:00 AM  

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