Saturday, October 10, 2015

Chess Videos

      What about Igor Smirnov courses? Smirnov is a good salesman! He offers a ton of courses promising amazing results, usually at fairly hefty prices, but are they as good as he claims? His Remote Chess Academy offers courses like The Grandmaster’s Secrets-Learn and implement the most essential principles of chess. The course GM’s Secrets will show you how to think like a strong player step-by-step. Cost $57
      Calculate Till Mate-No fluff and no hype – “CALCULATE TILL MATE” is a COMPLETE and UNIQUE 3-in-1 training system that will sharpen your tactics, calculation, and visualization skills like no other chess book, DVD, or training program could. Cost $149
      The Grandmaster’s Positional Understanding-Learn everything about Chess Strategy, GM’s Positional understanding, a beginner chess course which will take your chess play to the next level. Cost $139
      Grandmaster Secrets is a basic course about positional play and one average player who bought is advised on one forum that it in no way compared to Silman's book How to Reassess Your Chess which is available for under $25.
      The general consensus of opinion is that while Smirnov has some sound ideas, the courses offer little in actual content. Watching videos may give some good ideas, but they are no substitute for grabbing a chess set and digging into a good book. I have talked to a few people who have tried various videos and so far none have actually improved significantly, but, come to think of it, the same could be said of books. The real problem is, truth be told, most “students” lack the gumption to put in hours of hard work, preferring instead to look for shortcuts and “secrets.”
 If you like videos, Smirnov does have some teaser stuff on his Youtube channel. There is also some other good chess content on Youtube and you may want to check out some of them listed HERE. Two of my personal favorites on Youtube are majnu and kingscrusher. I also recommend chessvideos as they have some excellent training videos by various National Masters, etcIM Greg Shahade also offers some pretty good Youtube lectures.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Free Chess Book App

Simply reading a Chess book without a Chess board is not easy unless you are Vishy Anand or Magnus Carlsen! What if you could read your PDF Chess ebooks or magazines as well as follow the games on a Chess board, all in one screen!? This is exactly what this app helps achieve. All your Chess books and magazines in the palm of your hand! Ideal for Large screen phones and Tablets.  Get the App

☆ Open YOUR ebook in pdf, djvu format or purchase from the Store!
☆ Built-in Store with magazines from Chessdom (Chess Insider) and 50 Moves Magazine!
☆ Open e-magazines from New in Chess, USCF, Chess Today, British Chess Magazine etc
☆ Analyze with the power of two Chess engines!
☆ Open web sites
☆ Talk to move! (experimental)
☆ Copy board position to other apps like Droidfish, Chess for Android
☆ Book options like Day/Night mode, Bookmarks, Multi-touch zoom, Crop, Split
☆ Edit Annotations/variations, change Board themes and much more

Forward Chess

If you don't know about this site, you should. Tons of free chess material. Just look at what's available!!  Link to site

Composed Chess Problems
Mate in 2's: Anonymous; George E Carpenter; George N Cheney; Ed H Courtenay; John Gardiner; Charles A Gilberg; Napoleon Marache; Joseph A Potter; George A Reed

Mate in 3's: Anonymous; JB of Bridport; Mrs Baird; A. Bayersdorfer; O. Blumenthal; George E Carpenter; R. Collinson; A. Corrias; J. Crum; A W Daniel; H. Hosey Davis; A. Decker; F. Dubbe; K. Erlin; Otto Fuss; K. Gavrilow; W. Geary; Sam Loyd; O Nemo; F M Teed

Puzzles by Opening (ECO)
Grandmasters by country


Game Collections
Alexander Alekhine: "My Best Games of Chess 1908-1937"; AVRO 1938 Chess Tournament; Frederick Edge: "Paul Morphy: The Chess Champion (1859)"; Robert Fischer: "My 60 Memorable Games"; Roberto Franco-Perez: "God Of War - Bobby Fischer At The Peak of Power"; Garry Kasparov: "Fighting Chess: My Games and Career"; Viktor Korchnoi: "Chess is My Life"; Johann Lowenthal: "Morphy's Games of Chess"; Ludek Pachman: "Decisive Games in Chess History"; Fred Reinfeld: "Great Brilliancy Prize Games of the Chess Masters; Wilhelm Steinitz: Sixth American Chess Congress (1866); Russian Championship 2004; US Championship 2005; World Chess Championship 2005

William Aramil: "The Complete Idiot's Guide to Chess Openings"; James Eade: "Chess Openings for Dummies"; WTHarvey: "50 English Miniatures (A17)"; WTHarvey: "50 King's Indian Saemisch Miniatures (E81)"; WTHarvey: "50 Marshall Gambit Miniatures (C89)"; WTHarvey: "50 Sozin Miniatures"; WTHarvey: "50 Semi-Slav Miniatures (D47)"; Nick de Firmian: "Chess Openings the Easy Way"; Nick de Firmian: "Modern Chess Openings (15th ed.)"; I. A. Horowitz: "How to Win in the Chess Openings"; Bruce Pandolfini: "Chess Openings: Traps and Zaps"; Bruce Pandolfini: "More Chess Openings: Traps and Zaps 2"; James Plaskett: "Sicilian Grand Prix Attack"; Eric Schiller, ed: "Unorthodox Chess Openings"; Chris Ward: "Improve Your Opening Play"

Strategy & Tactics
Paul Keres: "The Art of the Middle Game"; Ludek Pachman: "Modern Chess Strategy"; Susan Polgar: "Chess Tactics for Champions"; Fred Reinfeld & Irving Chernev: "Chess Strategies and Tactics"; Fred Reinfeld: "Hypermodern Chess"; Vladimir Vukovic: "The Art of Attack in Chess"

Improve/Evaluate Your Game
Pal Benko: "Winning with Chess Psychology"; A D de Groot: "Thought and Choice in Chess"; Angus Dunnington: "Can You Be a Positional Chess Genius?"; Garry Kasparov: "Kasparov Teaches Chess"; Alexander Kotov: "Play Like a Grandmaster"; Dan Kretschmer: "How To Beat ANYONE At Chess"; Emmanuel Lasker: "Common Sense in Chess"; Jacques Mieses: "Instructive Positions From Master Chess"; Sam Palatnik: "The Tarrasch Formula"; Fred Reinfeld: "Chess by Yourself"

Irving Chernev: "Capablanca's Best Chess Endings"; Irving Chernev: "Practical Chess Endings"; Max Euwe: "A Guide to Chess Endings"; Reuben Fine: "Basic Chess Endings"

Chess Miscellany
Henry Bird: "Chess History and Reminiscences"; Ferank Brady: "Bobby Fischer: Profile of a Prodigy"; Bruce Pandofini: "Chess Thinking"; Hanon Russell: "Russian for Chess Players"; Eric Schiller: "Encyclopedia of Chess Wisdom"

Deep Fritz 14

    This is the newest version which features a 64-bit engine and supports multiple core processors. The Deep Fritz engine is supposedly almost 100 Elo points higher than the previous version. On the CCLR 40/40 rating list, the Deep Fritz 14 engine is only rated at number 20 though, placing it well behind the leaders Komodo 9, Stockfish 6 and Houdini 4. That does not matter though because there are a number of FREE engines, including Stockfish, that you can download.
      The main reason I like Fritz, besides the fact that's it's been my most used GUI and so I am familiar with it, is that it has a nice interface. A few players have complained that documentation is sparse and the interface is confusing, but I have not found that to be the case. Youtube has a lot of videos that cover all it's features and you can best learn how to use the various features just by playing around with it and experimenting.  Of course, a variety of pieces and boards with different color formats are available and you can move the windows around and resize them to suit your taste.  Forget the 3-D layouts though!
      Also, the new version runs faster and flows better on the latest versions of Windows. I am not much into the training and analysis functions, but they are excellent features.
      With a membership at server with Deep Fritz 14 you can, besides play real time online games, watch live commentary of tournaments or take part in training sessions with players like Daniel King, Klaus Bischoff, Maurice Ashley, Dr. Karsten Müller and many more. Deep Fritz 14 includes a free six-month Premium Membership to which is a nice perk that comes with your purchase.
      Deep Fritz 14 gives you access to “Let's Check” which is another feature I personally have no interest in, but it is popular. Over 200 million positions are available that have been deeply calculated by engines...handy for serious opening preparation or correspondence players I assume. This feature has little interest to me in correspondence chess simply because I prefer openings that while basically sound, are little explored. So, letting engines explore those positions for hours to uncover hidden resources is part of the fun of correspondence chess for me. In addition, Deep Fritz 14 comes with a new opening book with over four million positions and a database with over 1.5 million games.
      Some people have complained that the program is buggy, but I have not had any issues running it on Windows 8.1 on a quad core Satellite laptop. The truth is though that upgrading from my old Fritz 12 program didn't get me anything new except an upgraded opening book and database, but I don't consult the Fritz 12 book much and sometimes update my games database so it's not too out of date. If you already have a chess program that you like, I don't see any reason to get this one. However, IF you are looking for a good commercial program, Fritz is my preferred program. Just make sure you download a decent free engine because Fritz, while strong, isn't among the best.
      If you order from Chess Central they will also include Chess Masterpieces by Henry Bird. He wrote the book (available free on the internet) containing 150 games 125 years ago, but it's in old fashioned descriptive notation…”25.Kt takes R” so it is nice that the games are in electronic format. Chess Central normally sells the e-book for $10. This is just a nice little addition IF you are interested in playing over old games.