28 votes
Accepted

What does "+-" mean in algebraic notation?

What does “+-” mean in algebraic notation? This symbol means "White has decisive advantage", which means that White's advantage is big enough to secure him victory. As for symbol -+ it means "Black ...
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16 votes

Why aren't early opening moves generally given exclamation marks?

Wikipedia says the following: Exclamation points ("!") indicate good moves—especially ones which are surprising or involve particular skill. Hence annotators are usually somewhat ...
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  • 23.8k
11 votes
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Good resource for annotated games

There are blogs and news sites that regularly publish analysis of recent games. Chess24 also provides a lot of videos with analysis of games, competing in that regard with various youtube channels. ...
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10 votes

Java Library for PGN parser

After reading a bunch of open source code, I just found out that most of them are relying on Chesspresso which is a solid Java Chess library that can handle move validation, PGN parser (what I was ...
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  • 311
9 votes

Why aren't early opening moves generally given exclamation marks?

To try to give a concrete example consider Sax-Seirawan, Brussels 1988 [Event "World Cup"] [Site "Brussels"] [Date "1988.??.??"] [Round "?"] [White "Sax, ...
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  • 4,031
7 votes
Accepted

What should an arbiter do if a player has illegally stopped notating?

The first time you see a player doing this you should warn him and make him catch up on his time. If you are watching the game closely it is likely that there will only be 2 or 3 moves to make up. ...
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  • 74.3k
7 votes
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Is this how to annotate your own chess games properly?

I think you did a great job there of annotating your game. If you have a coach (or an analysis buddy) and you were to show them that then they would get a big head start in identifying problems in ...
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  • 74.3k
7 votes
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Why is this move into a simple forced mate annotated dubious and not a blunder?

A blunder is a game-changing move. Nb8 does not change the result of the game which is utterly and completely lost regardless of black's move. Earlier in the game black did blunder when it gave away ...
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  • 74.3k
6 votes

FIDE rules regarding use of foreign languages in algebraic notation

As a native Russian player I may assure you that we always used the suggested notation, e.g. Фd4 or Лd1 (Ф - ферзь - for Queen, Л - ладья - for Rook, etc); even the 6 years old beginners did so. ...
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  • 1,547
6 votes

What does it mean to win "by force"?

"Wins by force" means that the move leads to a series of moves that makes it impossible for the losing side to defend the position. Here, the definition of "winning" can vary between annotators. ...
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  • 6,524
6 votes
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Unfamiliar with this move notation

de and fe are normal pawn captures. There is no contradiction in writing de and NxB and Nxe5. The "x" is optional. It would be unusual and inconsistent to write 4. BxNc6 and 4. ... Nc6 in the ...
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  • 74.3k
6 votes

Benefits of studying annotated grandmaster games

Tal vs Botvinnik 1960 is very good as Tal is quite verbose in commentary and what he was thinking about during the game. In addition to the benefits you mentioned, the annotations help you understand ...
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  • 4,897
5 votes

What does it mean to win "by force"?

I occasionally see annotations/commentary where a move / line is said to make (for example) white win "by force". I am unsure if it has the general sense of "this move initiates a forcing sequence ...
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5 votes

Good resource for annotated games

Here are some of Annotated game archives I found: GameKnot Annotated Games ChessGames.com Annotated Archive PGN Mentor Use this method to search for annotated games: Search for annotated games ...
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  • 558
5 votes
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Commented games for beginners

YouTube is a good resource to consider. There is one user in particular that annotates miniatures rather well for beginners, and as a bonus, he sounds like Dracula. https://www.youtube.com/user/...
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5 votes
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How are chess variations meant to be read

Visualization usually improves as you get stronger, and there are exercises that can be done to improve it. When following lines in a book, most players use a board, and sometimes two. The second ...
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  • 3,924
5 votes

Penalty for violating FIDE rule 8.1.2 - writing moves in advance

Should it be a verbal warning and loss of the game on a subsequent attempt or something else? It depends entirely on the circumstances, although a player would never be defaulted for the specific ...
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  • 74.3k
5 votes
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Chess Annotation Software

Chessbase meets all your criteria and more. For example, it also allows you to look up any position in a reference database, see the main moves other people have analyzed, etc. The downside is the ...
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5 votes
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Why is Tal talking about 10. Qf7 when 10.... N5f6 is possible?

You made a mistake when transcribing move 7. It is 7. Qh5+, not 7. Qf3+. Move 10 is then Qh5f7, which is not blocked by the Nf6. [FEN ""] 1. e4 Nf6 2. e5 Nd5 3. d4 d6 4. Nf3 dxe5 5. Nxe5 ...
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  • 849
4 votes

Good resource for annotated games

The best annotated PGN game collections I found were added to my website after searching for days, see Annotated PGN file download page I added 950+ annotated games and every world championship ...
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  • 211
4 votes

Good resource for annotated games

I'm glad some have found the downloadable annotated PGN game archives at Path to Chess Mastery - https://pathtochessmastery.blogspot.com/ - useful. Although the individual game analyses (my own ...
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4 votes
Accepted

Delete annotations in pgn games

In Chessbase, copy the games to a temp database, right click the file, go to tools and select Unannotate db, then copy to the games to a pgn file. Edited to note Unannotate doesn't work on pgn files ...
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4 votes

What do D and +-- mean in chess annotation?

"D" means see diagram. "+/-" means white is better, but not much better.
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  • 2,278
4 votes

Java Library for PGN parser

You could use chesslib. In the README file there is an example of how to load and walk through all the moves from all the games in the PGN file: PgnHolder pgn = new PgnHolder("/opt/games/...
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4 votes
Accepted

Enter non-game moves in ChessBase

Enter a null move by ctrl+alt+0.
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  • 3,062
4 votes
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Comment/variation with different starting position

You can't do this in PGN, not the way you want it. There are some tricks that publishers (especially Everyman) use to create their "PGN ebooks": They split the book over many different PGN games. ...
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  • 25.8k
4 votes
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What is an "artificial" move?

An artificial move is one that does not fit in with what would be typical of the plan. It means "unnatural" given the position. In the game above, Bg4 is unusual, and only played 5.5% of the time in ...
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  • 31.9k
4 votes

Chess Annotation Software

I agree with @InertialIgnorance Chessbase is very useful and good. I have also used chess database software which have the advantage of being free: Scid ("Shane's Chess Information Database") is a ...
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  • 3,465
4 votes

Why aren't early opening moves generally given exclamation marks?

Exclamation (!) is a highlight in analysis. Either it indicates strong move, or it is also possible to indicate unexpected move. Something to which opponent is totally unprepared. Something which will ...
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  • 179
3 votes
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Using Tarrasch Chess GUI to annotate

I got in touch with Bill Forster, the developer who created the software, and this is what he replied. It worked for me so I hope it will be useful for somebody else: I did some experiments with ...
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