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Hot Topic (More than 10 Replies) Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis (Read 1130 times)
bobbyh64
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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #11 - 11/02/17 at 01:53:42
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LeeRoth wrote on 08/24/17 at 21:55:35:
@bobbyh64 -- How about posting some examples?  Kind of curious to see what your engine thinks Nunn missed.


Too bad I didn't compile a list as I came across them. But as I'm looking at the book right now, I remembered where one was. He goes over the game Kramnik - Anand 1997, and after 1.Nf3 Nf6 2.c4 e6 3.Nc3 d5 4.d4 c6 5.Bg5 h6 6.Bh4 dxc4 7.e4 g5 8.Bg3 b5 9.Be2 Bb7 10.e5 Nh5 11.a4 a6 12.Nxg5 Nxg3 13.Nxf7 Kxf7 14.fxg3, he examines what would happen if Black played 14...Nd7. One line he gives is 15.Bh5+ Kg7 16.0-0 Rh7 17.Bg6 Kxg6 18.Qg4+ Qg5 19.Qxe6 Kg7 and he says it's a perpetual. According to my engine, Black is much better here, basically winning.

I just remember seeings lots of lines line this where the assessment is incorrect. So I feel like what's the point in going over all the analysis?

Another thing I just read that annoyed me is at the top of page 116 he says Anand rejected 17...c5 but it might have been the best move. Then he examines what would happen if White replied with 18.Nd6. And he gives two choices for Black, each of them a question mark. Makes no sense. Why say a certain line is better and only cover question-mark moves for Black after that? As the analysis continues he says White has nothing better than to repeat moves. So then why give Black's choices question marks? Why not give a move that's actually good? If Black's question-mark moves lead to equality, then surely a better move will lead to Black being better.
  
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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #10 - 09/02/17 at 16:49:11
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Dink Heckler wrote on 08/22/17 at 12:54:59:
I find those books impressive, monumental, but basically useless. An important part of pedagogy is to distill the material, and the writer has made no effort to do so.

Some of Kasparov's long analysis is even worse, as it's ego-driven - 20 pages to try to bludgeon the reader into conceding that he was actually better all along.



So true on Kasparov.  Grin

But the real answer I think as posted above. Use it as training material as that is what it is for.
  
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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #9 - 08/24/17 at 21:55:35
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@bobbyh64 -- How about posting some examples?  Kind of curious to see what your engine thinks Nunn missed.
  
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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #8 - 08/22/17 at 21:37:57
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bobbyh64 wrote on 08/21/17 at 05:45:05:
... the analysis leaves a lot to be desired. I'm able to look past this sort of thing if there's not much analysis, but there's a ton and it seems pointless playing over every variation knowing that pretty soon I'll come across an error.
I'm trying to parse your objection. It seems to be not so much about the frequency of error, but about the total number of errors. More analysis at the same rate of error equals more total errors, and that is when you become upset?

I always start with the engine off and my brain on. The GM's variations are almost always better than what I could come up with on my own. When I do have a question, I move the pieces around using my own brain first, and occasionally later check with an engine. Far from being upset at finding a GM error, I am excited because it means my brain is working.
  
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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #7 - 08/22/17 at 20:10:59
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ReneDescartes wrote on 08/21/17 at 20:47:04:
Better to read computer-unchecked analysis by someone like Botvinnik who is very careful but whose ideas are rational and human. Who cares if the analysis is right if you (a) can't see that yourself without an engine and (b) can't derive any memorable ideas from it?

I would rather read incorrect analysis by Tarrasch that gives me ideas I can use than correct analysis that I don't really react to by an engine or, worse, by  a person pretending to be an engine (or vice-versa, depending on how you look at it).

Furthermore, some of the "incorrect" ideas that your engine has "refuted" could be borne out by a stronger engine or tablebase that would refute the refutation--who knows? And if you can't tell about this, then, apart from what you can learn and retain, once again--who cares about such refutations? What are we going to do with the supposedly correct line--burn a little incense in front of it?

So if you are learning from Nunn's analytic ideas, then by all means continue; if not, switch to something more instructive. Like Botvinnik.


Agree 100%.  This is what I would have said if I could have said it as well as Rene. 


  
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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #6 - 08/22/17 at 12:54:59
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I find those books impressive, monumental, but basically useless. An important part of pedagogy is to distill the material, and the writer has made no effort to do so.

Some of Kasparov's long analysis is even worse, as it's ego-driven - 20 pages to try to bludgeon the reader into conceding that he was actually better all along.
  

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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #5 - 08/21/17 at 21:19:34
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proustiskeen wrote on 08/21/17 at 14:27:30:
bobbyh64 wrote on 08/21/17 at 05:45:05:
I'm reading Nunn's Understanding Chess Move By Move and I think I might be wasting my time with it. It's from 2001 and I'm not sure if the analysis was checked with an engine. Anyway, there's a lot of analysis in the book and quite frankly, a lot of it is wrong. The author sometimes lists losing moves as winning moves and overlooks winning moves. I don't know if there's a point in going over the analysis knowing that a lot of it is wrong. I've checked a bunch of lines he gives and my engine refutes them. The verbal explanations are good but the analysis leaves a lot to be desired. I'm able to look past this sort of thing if there's not much analysis, but there's a ton and it seems pointless playing over every variation knowing that pretty soon I'll come across an error. Anyone else have opinions about books like this?


Nunn surely checked his analysis with an engine, but given that it was published in 2001, we're probably talking about Fritz 5.32 or Fritz 6 on roughly a 1 Ghz Pentium 3. That's not nearly the same thing as Stockfish or Komodo on modern hardware.

On my blog http://chess-brabo.blogspot.de/2016/12/raise-of-machines-part-2.html I wrote that engines improved with an average rate of 52 points per year. So it is really not fair to judge the quality of a book published in 2001 by today's  engines.
  
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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #4 - 08/21/17 at 20:47:04
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Better to read computer-unchecked analysis by someone like Botvinnik who is very careful but whose ideas are rational and human. Who cares if the analysis is right if you (a) can't see that yourself without an engine and (b) can't derive any memorable ideas from it?

I would rather read incorrect analysis by Tarrasch that gives me ideas I can use than correct analysis that I don't really react to by an engine or, worse, by  a person pretending to be an engine (or vice-versa, depending on how you look at it).

Furthermore, some of the "incorrect" ideas that your engine has "refuted" could be borne out by a stronger engine or tablebase that would refute the refutation--who knows? And if you can't tell about this, then, apart from what you can learn and retain, once again--who cares about such refutations? What are we going to do with the supposedly correct line--burn a little incense in front of it?

So if you are learning from Nunn's analytic ideas, then by all means continue; if not, switch to something more instructive. Like Botvinnik.
« Last Edit: 08/22/17 at 18:51:59 by ReneDescartes »  
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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #3 - 08/21/17 at 16:00:13
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bobbyh64 wrote on 08/21/17 at 05:45:05:
I'm reading Nunn's Understanding Chess Move By Move and I think I might be wasting my time with it. It's from 2001 and I'm not sure if the analysis was checked with an engine. Anyway, there's a lot of analysis in the book and quite frankly, a lot of it is wrong. The author sometimes lists losing moves as winning moves and overlooks winning moves. I don't know if there's a point in going over the analysis knowing that a lot of it is wrong. I've checked a bunch of lines he gives and my engine refutes them. The verbal explanations are good but the analysis leaves a lot to be desired. I'm able to look past this sort of thing if there's not much analysis, but there's a ton and it seems pointless playing over every variation knowing that pretty soon I'll come across an error. Anyone else have opinions about books like this?


Agree with @proustiskeen. Probably a difference in engine/PC power. Nunn has always had a reputation for using computer analysis (although he was criticised by Bobby Fisher for errors in his republished book.)
  

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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #2 - 08/21/17 at 14:27:30
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bobbyh64 wrote on 08/21/17 at 05:45:05:
I'm reading Nunn's Understanding Chess Move By Move and I think I might be wasting my time with it. It's from 2001 and I'm not sure if the analysis was checked with an engine. Anyway, there's a lot of analysis in the book and quite frankly, a lot of it is wrong. The author sometimes lists losing moves as winning moves and overlooks winning moves. I don't know if there's a point in going over the analysis knowing that a lot of it is wrong. I've checked a bunch of lines he gives and my engine refutes them. The verbal explanations are good but the analysis leaves a lot to be desired. I'm able to look past this sort of thing if there's not much analysis, but there's a ton and it seems pointless playing over every variation knowing that pretty soon I'll come across an error. Anyone else have opinions about books like this?


Nunn surely checked his analysis with an engine, but given that it was published in 2001, we're probably talking about Fritz 5.32 or Fritz 6 on roughly a 1 Ghz Pentium 3. That's not nearly the same thing as Stockfish or Komodo on modern hardware.
  
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Re: Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
Reply #1 - 08/21/17 at 07:40:06
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These books are great training material - if you work with them and try and refute the analysis yourself!  Wink
  

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Usefulness of books with lengthy outdated analysis
08/21/17 at 05:45:05
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I'm reading Nunn's Understanding Chess Move By Move and I think I might be wasting my time with it. It's from 2001 and I'm not sure if the analysis was checked with an engine. Anyway, there's a lot of analysis in the book and quite frankly, a lot of it is wrong. The author sometimes lists losing moves as winning moves and overlooks winning moves. I don't know if there's a point in going over the analysis knowing that a lot of it is wrong. I've checked a bunch of lines he gives and my engine refutes them. The verbal explanations are good but the analysis leaves a lot to be desired. I'm able to look past this sort of thing if there's not much analysis, but there's a ton and it seems pointless playing over every variation knowing that pretty soon I'll come across an error. Anyone else have opinions about books like this?
  
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