Hot answers tagged

66

From the FIDE Laws of Chess: 50-move rule: 9.3 The game is drawn, upon a correct claim by a player having the move, if: (...) the last 50 moves by each player have been completed without the movement of any pawn and without any capture. 75-move rule: 9.6 If one or both of the following occur(s) then the game is drawn: (...) any series of at ...


59

Dummy Pawns Today, it is little known that for forty years at the height of the British Empire, dummy pawns were the scourge of tournament play, and even grandmasters ran scared. (Possible exaggeration here.) The heresy raged from 1862-1904. See Eminent Victorian Chess Players: Ten Biographies by Tim Harding. However, the origins of the dummy pawn goes back ...


55

Rashid Nezhmetdinov, aka “Super Nezh”, was clearly GM strength, having a plus score in the 20 games he played against World Champions, including a plus score against his friend, Tal. He was also a five-time Russian champion (this title predates the Soviet Union, and is not the same as champion of the Soviet Union). I was a Russian linguist in the Air Force ...


41

No. The vast majority of club level players still play like the vast majority of club level players always did. Changes in knowledge about chess mostly apply to high levels of play; the kind of mistakes class A players make were already known to be mistakes for ages, and opening theory doesn't help much if your opponent deviates from theory at move 5 anyway. ...


36

Edward Winter cites Owen J. Clarkin (Ottawa, Canada) who quotes from The Modern Chess Instructor by W. Steinitz (New York, 1889) which in turn cites this example from Lowenthal's Book of the London Chess Congress, 1862: [Title "Dummy pawn motivation"] [fen "r/1Pp5/2P3p1/8/6pb/4p1kB/4P1p1/6K1 w - - 0 1"] [StartFlipped "0"] 1....


35

In my thread on the English Chess Forum, which seemed to make the world go crazy on the subject, I gave all the major and minor events in the history of the “legal” triple check that my extensive research has uncovered. This loophole was even talked about recently in Episode 20 of "The Chess Pit" at the 12:13 mark. Here is all information in ...


29

There is nothing in principle preventing players from long tournaments. Or maybe yes if they are way too long, like the first Karpov - Kasparov match (had to be postponed for health reasons), but these cases are far from the norm. If we stick to the elite games, I would say that the main reasons why tournaments have become shorter is that there are many ...


26

Wikipedia claims that In early Sanskrit chess (c. 500–700) the king could be captured and this ended the game. The Persians (c. 700–800) introduced the idea of warning that the king was under attack (announcing check in modern terminology). This was done to avoid the early and accidental end of a game. Later the Persians added the additional rule that a ...


25

I think they certainly have increased their ELO, but more importantly, their overall chess strength. ELO is only a rating relative to others in the pool so it may tend to go up more slowly if everyone in the pool gets better, which they have collectively. First, you need to take an average of the top players, rather than look at just two incredibly special ...


24

I think stalemate is a draw for the same reason that dropping the white ball when potting black is a loss in 8-ball pool - it gives the losing player a granule of hope until the very end, and it ensures that the winner must be clinical in securing his win. With regards to whether this flows logically from the other rules of the game - chess is, after all, a ...


23

I disagree with all answers treating the gnat and elephant as allegory for players of varying skill level. Rather, the actions of the gnat and elephant are the main point. Chess as a game with rules is not very broad. There are only six types of piece. Half the actual number of pieces are identical and have moves that are almost as simple as it is possible ...


23

Bobby Fischer did not resign the title, although it may have looked that way. As the New York Times reported at the time: The International Chess Federation stripped Mr. Fischer of his title and gave it to the challenger, Anatoly Karpov of the Soviet Union, because the 32‐year‐old American failed to meet the deadline for formal acceptance of federation ...


22

Was playing with both hands ever allowed in chess? Yes, before 1997. Hence in 1995 Kasparov was not breaking the rules. The key article in the the FIDE Laws of Chess is: Article 4: The act of moving the pieces 4.1 Each move must be made with one hand only. This first appeared in the 1997 edition of the FIDE Laws of Chess. The previous edition, ...


22

The character Beth Harmon is purely fictional. The series is based off a book by the same title by Walter Tevis. The author had a tendencie to base books drawing from personal experiences but he wasn't a chess prodigy that's for sure. He was however a good club level player which is why the book has such strong chess knowledge. In that time period, there are ...


21

How would say a 1700 rated player of say 50 years ago who is no longer .around go against a 1700 player of today? Speaking as a player who was around 50 years ago and was rated the equivalent of 1800 in 1973 (my BCF grading was 150 with a generally accepted conversion formula of ELO = BCF x 8 + 600) and is rated 1718 today I'm pretty sure I would beat my 17 ...


20

Practically speaking, if the king were any more powerful, checkmate or capture would be impossible. The Queen originated as the Advisor. The Advisor was powerful, but not as powerful as the modern Queen, however. Why did the Advisor become the Queen? Having more than one Queen per side would debase the game, and there are two each of the other pieces. ...


19

If you really mean "dubious", then no one really fits this description since Steinitz, who liked to, for example, go for walks with his King when playing the King's Gambit as White. But people didn't really know better back then. If you're willing to relax "dubious" to "offbeat", the first player that comes to mind is Bent Larsen, one of the strongest ...


19

An unsorted list of arguments for the vitality of chess problems (probably my answer is a little bit biased because I am an enthusiastic chess composer ...) Computers: A lot of new ideas have been developed during the last decades. One reason for it is the rise of computer programs which help to check the correctness of a chess problem. This simplified the ...


18

From this Chess.com Discussion In terms of games played, it would be Tal with 95 games (46 wins, 49 draws) from October 23, 1973 to October 16, 1974. He also has the second longest streak of 84 games (47 wins, 39 draws) from July 1972 to April 1973. In terms of time, Capablanca was undefeated for 63 games (40 wins, 23 draws from February 10, 1916 to ...


18

Perhaps another factor is that transport and communications were so much more limited in the 19th century, that a short tournament would not have justified lengthy travel, particularly for transatlantic professionals visiting Europe. At an amateur level in Britain, the burgeoning train network allowed evening visits from one provincial town to a neighbouring ...


17

Chess as an activity is not appealing to many women. Because there are so few women in open tournaments, it can be quite intimidating for a girl or woman to start playing the game. Imagine being one of the 1-3% of female players at a large open tournament. They receive constant attention and stares (it is much worse if they are conventionally attractive). ...


17

From Quora: What was Bobby Fischer's IQ? (2018): Short answer: In 1958, when Fischer sat a Stanford-Binet test at the age of 15, his score was 180-187. But in today’s terms, Bobby Fischer’s IQ should be 148–155 on the Fifth edition of the Stanford-Binet test, and 150-160 on the WISC-V/WAIS-IV tests administered by Mensa. The only reference provided for ...


16

In order to qualify for the title of Grandmaster, a player must achieve three Grandmaster norms. That is not accurate. The regulations for the award of FIDE titles are given here. There are two ways to become a grandmaster. Achieving norms and reaching a certain rating is one way but there are also Direct Titles. The FIDE handbook defines these like this:...


16

Are there such examples of torturous winning, where a grandmaster resists his urge to resign and lets the opponent take all of his pieces before he gets checkmated? No, there aren't, for the simple reason that that sort of behaviour would require both players to behave in an extremely childish manner and childish behaviour (e.g. "hope chess") is ...


16

Everybody seems to agree that "ELO inflation" is real (I found an article from 20 years ago claiming this exists)...except scientists. Here is a 2011 paper that vehemently denies the phenomenon; the abstract says that only little inflation happens, and the players really get better. https://ojs.aaai.org/index.php/AAAI/article/view/7951


16

The raw data which could be used to extract this information is available on the FIDE website (from 2001) and the Olimpbase website (before 2001). What you will need to do is clean the data (the older the data the more "dirty" it is), construct a relational database and insert the data. Then you will be able to use SQL to search the database for ...


16

A chessgames.com user has made a compilation of consultation games. For example, it contains Lasker / Pillsbury vs Steinitz / Chigorin. According to a comment by user TheFocus, it was "played in St. Petersburg, Russia on January 29, 1896."


15

There have been some shorter ones, for instance Kasparov-Kramnik (2000), game 7, draw in 11 moves. http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=1252046 Kasparov-Anand (1995), game 18, draw in 12 moves. http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=1241980 Karpov-Kasparov (1984), game 29, draw in 13 moves. http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessgame?gid=...


15

In Indian Chess, the game that was played in the 18th, 19th and early 20th centuries in India (not to be confused with its ancestor Chaturanga), the rules allowed no castle, but : The king can make a knight's move once in a game, known as Indian castling. As a consequence, g3 followed by Kg2 for White or ...b6 followed by ...Kb7 (the black king stands on ...


15

In Claude Shannon's paper of 1949, he quotes those values as part of his evaluation function: Most of the maxims and principles of correct play are really assertions about evaluating positions, for example: - (1) The relative values of queen, rook, bishop, knight and pawn are about 9, 5, 3, 3, 1, respectively. Thus other things being equal (!) if we ...


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