Wednesday, April 27, 2011

May 4 Carnival Coming Soon:

The fifth carnival is almost here, and is going to be hosted by the Hebden Bridge Chess Club Blog. It's not a Bridge and Chess club, but a chess club in a town with the quaint name 'Hebden Bridge.' It's all very British if you ask me, which just gives me a warm and fuzzy feeling (or cold and rainy I guess). The blog announcement and details are here. Remember, if there is something you want to see, whether you wrote it or not, you have to submit it!

Monday, April 04, 2011

Fourth Chess Improvement Carnival is up!

Donnnie over at Liquid Egg Product has done a great job putting together the Fourth Chess Improvement Carnival: the Omelette Edition. Sorry, Mascot.

Some great material, as usual, from the chess blogosphere. Some people are just consistently posting good stuff about improvement every month. I kept up serious blogging for about three years. Some contributors have been at it much longer: their motivation to improve at chess is impressive.

The May edition will be at Hebden Bridge and Chess Club. If you see something that you like, even if it isn't from your own blog, you can nominate it for inclusion here.

Friday, April 01, 2011

My rating jumped 1000 points in one day!

As most of you know, I haven't been exactly on top of my game as a chess improvement blogger. Since my humiliation at the World Open a couple of years ago, I didn't have much motivation to study chess. I just don't have the talent required, the minimal, basic innate chess IQ to hit 2000 with years of serious study. Basically, after that tournament I came away thinking I was a chess retard.

Or so I thought, until I realized I was simply going about my study all wrong. I've been studying chess without much fanfare for the past three months, and realized the secret to good chess: do three elementary tactical puzzles right before a game. If you do more, you will burn out. If you do less, your brain will not be sufficiently primed, the tactical seeds you planted will not receive enough sunshine. It's that simple. Three problems (and as DK Transform pointed out in private communication, it is no coincidence that this is approximately equal to pi (complete the circle of chess improvement, not by doing seven circles, but pi problems of chess), and also nearly twice the golden ratio (if you want to double your efforts, take the golden ratio, and multiply by two: this is just elementary logic and shouldn't require any justification)).

So, given my newfound secret of chess improvement, I entered the Springfield Heights Intercontinental Tournament of Chess, didn't study any openings, or do any tactics other than the three problems exactly two minutes before my games started. The time controls were 90/5, and because of this newfound technique for tactical prowess I was so confident I decided to enter the Open section, even though I am only rated about 1100 USCF.

This may be hard to believe, but in an Open section of 133 players, including 15 grandmasters, I came in second place (losing only to Gata Kamsky in the fourth and final round)!

I am so excited I can't express it. My rating went from around 1100 to approximately 2000 in *one day*. I will post the games next week, I am presently going over them with that girl on the cover of Lev Albert's pocket chess book. Turns out she is really good at chess.

I am on cloud nine, have given up my dead-end career as a neuroscientist, and decided to devote myself full time to chess. Like all people that have rapid chess improvement based on performance at a single tournament, I am obligated to write a long book full of words with few positions or chess analysis, to inspire the stupid chess masses to follow in my footsteps.

I will offer lessons under the name 'golden_pie_tactics' at ICC for 120 sheckels an hour.