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Tag Archives: chess

Herb Healy Open House 2014-01-01

One of my favorite tournaments at the Boylston Chess Club is the annual Herb Healy Open House held every New Year’s Day. You get to socialize and play four relatively quick (G/40) games of chess, and there’s an unrated section if you stayed up too late the night before. This year I played in the […]

Mnemosyne, part 3

Mnemosyne is a spaced repetition program for aiding memorization; see my first and second posts for more information on the program and how I use it. I guess it is high time for another update; when digging out the above posts I was startled to see that they’re from four years ago. I’ll mostly discuss […]

A gripe about chess annotations

More and more these days, analysis of chess games relies on chess engines (playing programs), whether to come up with ideas or just to double-check the human annotator’s calculations. That is not my gripe; computer analysis is just a fact of life these days. My gripe is that the people who are writing the analyses […]

Double pin

It’s not every day you get to make a move like this. From a 3-minute ICC game: It was very pleasing to be able to play 25.Qxd6.

2010 US Chess Championship

This year’s US Chess Championship is currently being played in Saint Louis; it started yesterday and runs through May 24. The reason I bring it up here is that I think that the organizers are doing a good job of making it accessible and interesting for casual chess players, one of which may be you. […]

Snatching mediocrity from the jaws of victory

The worst possible blunder you can make in chess is to resign in a winning position. Accepting a draw in a winning position is only half as bad, but it is still pretty disappointing, especially after working hard for hours. In the Boylston Chess Club‘s ongoing Paramount tournament, I’ve already managed to accomplish that dubious […]

Chess/music synaesthesia

What is even weirder than me having a sense of synaesthesia linking musical key signatures and chess openings is the fact that I never consciously realized that this was kind of a weird thing until today. Actually, calling it synaesthesia may be overstating it; it’s not like music springs into my head as I play […]

Sergey Ivashchenko et al: Chess School 1–3

If you know anyone who plays the board game Go, try asking them, “Hey, I learned the rules, I’ve played a bit, and I want to improve; can you recommend a good book?” I will lay even money that they will say, “Go this minute and read Graded Go Problems for Beginners.” GGP is a […]


I have a terrible memory. I’m pretty good at remembering processes and techniques, but very bad at remembering raw information. Luckily, I went into computer science, which is all about the former, rather than biology or something. (My musical memory is quite good, but that’s definitely an exception.) I find it very frustrating to spend […]

The language of chess

There are many things that appeal to me about chess, and perhaps in some future post I’ll list them all, but one of the most important is the way that it creates a whole new sophisticated language, with inflection and shades of meaning, that doesn’t map to English (or whatever human language you care to […]