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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Ready to give up on 1...e5 (Read 14819 times)
trw
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #51 - 05/06/08 at 23:05:18
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I  live to play e4 e5. I'd like never to play any other opening ever if I could! Sadly I'm not a an e4 player myself because e5 is not a guaranteed response so I play 1.d4

I do end up doing alot of prep work on mainline openings in e4 e5 but I don't bother with silly stuff like the Halloween Gambit (which is easily refuted otb!) So why waste time on that? The opponent is hoping against hope not only that you havent' studied his obscure garbage but that you'll wander into to a rather rare trap. I recently played a Scotch line where I wandered into such a trap. He played an opening that was utterly refuted (but the refutation was far from obvious sometimes taking 17 moves!) And I wasn't able to figure it out. I lost this game but you know losing one game out of a 1000 to obscure lines is not going to make me stand random off shoots.
  
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #50 - 04/29/08 at 12:33:49
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Stigma wrote on 04/29/08 at 12:12:56:
When you said "judging a position alone" I autmatically thought of the end position of a calculated line, where you don't look at any further moves (either because the end position is calm and clarified, or because you are unable to visualize any further), and instead stop and make a judgement. "How you think you could proceed" in that position would be very vague and intuitive, because the conscious mind has stopped calculating.

Rowson had an interesting comment (in "The 7 Deadly Chess Sins", I think) that during a game, your mind looks at many more lines than you are actually conscious of, and these subconscious lines influence your judgement, but I don't know... I feel more comfortable with lines I can remember thinking of!

I think we are not disagreeing all that much Smiley

Rowson's comment is nice as you can never prove or disprove it Grin
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #49 - 04/29/08 at 12:12:56
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Willempie wrote on 04/29/08 at 11:46:58:
Stigma wrote on 04/29/08 at 11:41:13:
Willempie wrote on 04/29/08 at 11:26:05:
What I am trying to say is that judging a position alone is not really useful. "White is better" doesnt help the white player at all.


Not really useful? The context was an imagined situation of trying to decide whether (or when) to open the position. Surely if I evaluate the arising position as better for me, that is a good reason to go for it, even if I'm not yet sure how to continue once I get there. My judgement may turn out to be wrong, but during a game I have only myself to trust (and in OTB chess, indecisiveness can be just as big a problem as trusting one's intuition too much).

Exactly my point. IF it is based on your understanding of the position, then it all depends on how you think you could proceed in that future position.

That is where experience and "feel" for a position kicks in.


When you said "judging a position alone" I automatically thought of the end position of a calculated line, where you don't look at any further moves (either because the end position is calm and clarified, or because you are unable to visualize any further), and instead stop and make a judgement. "How you think you could proceed" in that position would be very vague and intuitive, because the conscious mind has stopped calculating.

Rowson had an interesting comment (in "The 7 Deadly Chess Sins", I think) that during a game, your mind looks at many more lines than you are actually conscious of, and these subconscious lines influence your judgement, but I don't know... I feel more comfortable with lines I can remember thinking of!
  

Improvement begins at the edge of your comfort zone. -Jonathan Rowson
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #48 - 04/29/08 at 11:46:58
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Stigma wrote on 04/29/08 at 11:41:13:
Willempie wrote on 04/29/08 at 11:26:05:
What I am trying to say is that judging a position alone is not really useful. "White is better" doesnt help the white player at all.


Not really useful? The context was an imagined situation of trying to decide whether (or when) to open the position. Surely if I evaluate the arising position as better for me, that is a good reason to go for it, even if I'm not yet sure how to continue once I get there. My judgement may turn out to be wrong, but during a game I have only myself to trust (and in OTB chess, indecisiveness can be just as big a problem as trusting one's intuition too much).

Exactly my point. IF it is based on your understanding of the position, then it all depends on how you think you could proceed in that future position.

That is where experience and "feel" for a position kicks in.
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #47 - 04/29/08 at 11:41:13
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Willempie wrote on 04/29/08 at 11:26:05:
What I am trying to say is that judging a position alone is not really useful. "White is better" doesnt help the white player at all.


Not really useful? The context was an imagined situation of trying to decide whether (or when) to open the position. Surely if I evaluate the arising position as better for me, that is a good reason to go for it, even if I'm not yet sure how to continue once I get there. My judgement may turn out to be wrong, but during a game I have only myself to trust (and in OTB chess, indecisiveness can be just as big a problem as trusting one's intuition too much).
  

Improvement begins at the edge of your comfort zone. -Jonathan Rowson
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #46 - 04/29/08 at 11:26:05
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Stigma wrote on 04/29/08 at 11:01:46:
Willempie wrote on 04/29/08 at 09:51:49:
I am not so sure about this. Sure you can know that a position is better, but without having a clue on how to proceed that is kinda irrelevant.

I'm not sure I understand your argument. A judgement that a position is favorable usually presupposes some idea of how to continue, even if it's a very rough or intuitive idea. If that was your point, I agree. But intuition is a slippery thing, and sometimes a feeling that there is "something" in a position can be vindicated only afterwards by Fritz or Rybka, while we didn't find the right idea at the board with the clock ticking.

What I am trying to say is that judging a position alone is not really useful. "White is better" doesnt help the white player at all.
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Willempie wrote on 04/29/08 at 09:51:49:
Say you have 2 bishops vs lone king, then it isnt judgement to say that you are winning it is just derived knowledge, the judgement starts if you know how to win.


"I am winning" is a judgement per definition, isn't it? The calculation starts if you know (roughly) the right winning procedure. (Btw. 2 bishops vs lone king is not a particalarly good example; every strong player should be able to work out the win even if he never read or thought about it before.)

It is a judgement, but not based on your own evaluations.
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I shoud clarify that I agree with Markovich that it's impossible to play chess if you cannot judge when an opening of the position is favorable, and I can do so most of the time. But such a judgement, even if correct, is no guarantee against oversights 5 or 10 moves down the line (and particularly in my games). Thankfully, my opponents also err sometimes!

Well I have come to notice that my own oversights (and I have a lot: lost queens, mate in ones etc) are often grounded in not understanding the position.
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #45 - 04/29/08 at 11:01:46
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Willempie wrote on 04/29/08 at 09:51:49:
I am not so sure about this. Sure you can know that a position is better, but without having a clue on how to proceed that is kinda irrelevant.


I'm not sure I understand your argument. A judgement that a position is favorable usually presupposes some idea of how to continue, even if it's a very rough or intuitive idea. If that was your point, I agree. But intuition is a slippery thing, and sometimes a feeling that there is "something" in a position can be vindicated only afterwards by Fritz or Rybka, while we didn't find the right idea at the board with the clock ticking.

Willempie wrote on 04/29/08 at 09:51:49:
Say you have 2 bishops vs lone king, then it isnt judgement to say that you are winning it is just derived knowledge, the judgement starts if you know how to win.


"I am winning" is a judgement per definition, isn't it? The calculation starts if you know (roughly) the right winning procedure. (Btw. 2 bishops vs lone king is not a particularly good example; every strong player should be able to work out the win even if he never read or thought about it before.)

I should clarify that I agree with Markovich that it's impossible to play chess if you cannot judge when an opening of the position is favorable, and I can do so most of the time. But such a judgement, even if correct, is no guarantee against oversights 5 or 10 moves down the line (and particularly in my games). Thankfully, my opponents also err sometimes!
  

Improvement begins at the edge of your comfort zone. -Jonathan Rowson
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #44 - 04/29/08 at 09:51:49
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Stigma wrote on 04/29/08 at 09:19:21:
To know whether any given opening of the position is favorable or unfavorable is not at all the same thing as playing that open position well once it arrives. It is entirely possible (and happens sometimes in my games) to judge correctly that an open position should be favorable, to play into it, only to miscalculate and/or get into time trouble. Judgement and calculation are very different things.

I am not so sure about this. Sure you can know that a position is better, but without having a clue on how to proceed that is kinda irrelevant. Say you have 2 bishops vs lone king, then it isnt judgement to say that you are winning it is just derived knowledge, the judgement starts if you know how to win.
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #43 - 04/29/08 at 09:19:21
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Markovich wrote on 04/28/08 at 12:48:21:
I just don't see how anyone can play chess well if he can't play open positions well.
 
My interest in this question is purely related to OTB where the clock is a major issue. I grant that playing wide-open positions is a weak point in my game, relative to similarly-rated players. I might be able to play an open position competently, but I have to play much more slowly to make sure I don't overlook some tactic, and time-trouble is likely. I think this is a general point: Someone who has difficulty understanding endgames (i.e. me again!) might still be able to match his peers IF he has/takes a lot more time on the clock. The clock makes it imperative to steer the game towards one's preferred position types most of the time. When I play semi-open positions, those time-consuming open positions will be limited to a shorter portion of the game, and I can concentrate my calculation efforts there. Besides I often have a say in when the position opens up, and if the opening-up is to my advantage.

Markovich wrote on 04/28/08 at 12:48:21:
The reason is that the very best thing that you can do in many closed or half-open positions is to open the position on favorable terms (or at least, it's critically important to know whether any given opening of the position is favorable or unfavorable). If you can't judge well what your chances are in any given open position, and don't have a good idea what to do in it, how can you play chess at all?

To know whether any given opening of the position is favorable or unfavorable is not at all the same thing as playing that open position well once it arrives. It is entirely possible (and happens sometimes in my games) to judge correctly that an open position should be favorable, to play into it, only to miscalculate and/or get into time trouble. Judgement and calculation are very different things.

Markovich wrote on 04/28/08 at 12:48:21:
So I regard some of the statements here about how dicey and unsettling open positions are as evidence of a serious gap in the games of the persons making these statements -- notwithstanding that these may be more talented players than I am (and that there are no doubt very serious gaps in my own game).

Yes. Logically, there are reasons why I'm not a title holder, and a dislike of open positions is probably one reason. But the choice to sacrifice short-term results for long-term gains is a difficult one to make, particularly when every tournament is a fight for money-prize finish (sometimes I make it, but often I narrowly miss it). Do I really want to put myself out of contention for a year or more with a change of playing style? Tough choice, but at some point maybe it will be the only way forward.
  

Improvement begins at the edge of your comfort zone. -Jonathan Rowson
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #42 - 04/29/08 at 08:44:52
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Willempie wrote on 04/28/08 at 11:38:55:
To me the big difference between 1..e5 and a french or even a sicilian is that with those white and black are often playing different games, with white often busy on the kingside (often with a safe centre) and black elsewhere. With 1..e5 such an approach by black is suicide: you have to battle in the centre and be busy on the kingside as well.


Good point. Actually I've always been most fascinated by positions where the two sides have radically different plans, where a real "battle of ideas" develops. A consequence of too much Silman in my early chess education, perhaps. And I tend to play better in positions I find interesting, so I find this a good excuse for choosing semi-open defences. I read somewhere that a certain Kasparov also had an antipathy towards 1.e4 e5, so it doesn't necessarily have to ruin a chess career!
  

Improvement begins at the edge of your comfort zone. -Jonathan Rowson
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #41 - 04/29/08 at 06:05:33
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To quote me Wink
-Lines with c3 and d4 (Eg the Giuoco). Target the e4 pawn with d5 and if possible Nxe4 (rule of the thumb is to play Nxe4 whenever it is not directly wrong or when you can follow up with d5).

Btw I used to have a similar if reversed problem against 1.d4, I avoided closed positions like the plague and ended playing the Budapest, only to get more frustrated later. It took me a heavy diet of Nimzo's and QGD to get over it Smiley
  

If nothing else works, a total pig-headed unwillingness to look facts in the face will see us through.
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #40 - 04/29/08 at 05:39:53
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This must be the first time Meat Loaf has been quoted on a chess site Smiley, but I can see paradise by the dashboard lights...

Unfortunately, there isn't much OTB play here, so either I play CCchess (1.e4 e5 is drawish) or blitz (1.e4 e5 is suicide).  C'est la vie.

Scott

kylemeister wrote on 04/29/08 at 05:17:30:
4...d6 5. d4 puts me in mind of another quote:  "It's more than you [White] deserve" (Meat Loaf).

  

"Behind every beautiful thing there's been some kind of pain"  - Bob Dylan
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #39 - 04/29/08 at 05:17:30
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4...d6 5. d4 puts me in mind of another quote:  "It's more than you [White] deserve" (Meat Loaf).
  
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #38 - 04/29/08 at 04:52:11
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>>Now that's weird (4. Bb5), right there.  I would hope you took the pawn ("it feels right and looks good" -- Larry Evans, albeit in another context). [/quote]

Took it the first time.  Played d6 the second time.  Don't remember what I played the third time because I was thinking "how the hell am I losing to this??!!"  Of course, blitz is a different animal...

Scott
  

"Behind every beautiful thing there's been some kind of pain"  - Bob Dylan
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Re: Ready to give up on 1...e5
Reply #37 - 04/29/08 at 04:25:05
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smrex13 wrote on 04/29/08 at 03:55:34:
  Today I lost three games horribly to the Ponziani in blitz (out of book after mover 4 - 1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 Nc6 3.c3 Nf6 4.Bb5).


Now that's weird (4. Bb5), right there.  I would hope you took the pawn ("it feels right and looks good" -- Larry Evans, albeit in another context).
  
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