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Very Hot Topic (More than 25 Replies) Chess Book Review blog (Read 205363 times)
proustiskeen
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #444 - 07/16/19 at 14:45:58
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Here's my July review of Vladimir Tukmakov's new book, Coaching the Chess Stars.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/07/16/trainer-to-the-stars/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #443 - 07/13/19 at 13:40:22
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Nickajack wrote on 07/13/19 at 05:05:21:
kylemeister wrote on 06/26/19 at 17:08:49:
Pantu wrote on 06/26/19 at 11:21:14:
The example given there is 1.c4 e6 2.g3 d5 3.Bg2 Nf6 4.Nf3 d4 5.d3 c5 and now apparently 6.e4! is the move - if 6...dxe3 white is just better and otherwise 7.e5 followed by Qe2/Nbd2 with a good version of the KIA.
I wonder if that is really just good for White ...in the introduction/overview of the latest update, IMDavidCummings didn't appear to think so.



I am quite surprised that IM Cummings would not like 6.e4!, since it is a thematic move in this Benoni Wall (reversed) type of structures. It's an idea that comes up in similar lines of the English/Reti. Here it looks like the perfect time to play it


To set the record straight, I do like this move! With hindsight, my conclusion “Food for thought for Reti Players!” was a bit too modestly worded, but I didn’t think it would be controversial  Smiley My analysis in the PGN gives the nod to White, so the onus is on Black to find improvements.

First of all, 6 e4 was a great find by GM Donchenko, apparently uncovered using LC0 (indeed it is Leela’s first line). When researching games for the June ChessPub Update, his move really stuck out for its originality. In this opening, White, including recent games from the likes of Aronian, Nakamura, Wei Yi, Ding Liren etc., had almost always gone for a reverse Modern Benoni structure (most often with 5 0-0 and 6 e3). In the database, there are hundreds of games with e2-e3 and only five games with 5 d3 and 6 e4.

The point is not to play the reversed KID/Benoni wall, but the King’s Indian Attack structure after 6 e4 Nc6 7 e5, since Black can’t prevent 7 e5 in this line. Now, if Black continues with standard development, White does indeed get a good version of the KIA. See Donchenko-Villegas – a convincing win for White. In Donchenko-Oleksienko, Black varied with an early ...Ne7-g6 followed by trading White’s important f4-bishop. Black was actually better after 15 moves, so analyze this game before declaring victory! As mentioned in my article, White has earlier improvements such as 11 b4. I’ve since done some more analysis here and will update this game in the PGN Archives next month. Analyzing this game using LC0 and SF10 side-by-side is fascinating, they have clearly diverging evaluations in many places.

Coming back to the earlier comments in the thread, I agree that we will see many more LC0-inspired novelties in the coming months!
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #442 - 07/13/19 at 11:24:32
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I am entirely in agreement with Descartes, I have played some ganes where the other fellow simply understood the ideas in the position and I suffered. Not that there was a huge difference in strength, he just had a better idea about where the pieces should go.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #441 - 07/13/19 at 05:05:21
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kylemeister wrote on 06/26/19 at 16:08:49:
Pantu wrote on 06/26/19 at 10:21:14:
The example given there is 1.c4 e6 2.g3 d5 3.Bg2 Nf6 4.Nf3 d4 5.d3 c5 and now apparently 6.e4! is the move - if 6...dxe3 white is just better and otherwise 7.e5 followed by Qe2/Nbd2 with a good version of the KIA.

I wonder if that is really just good for White ...in the introduction/overview of the latest update, IMDavidCummings didn't appear to think so.



I am quite surprised that IM Cummings would not like 6.e4!, since it is a thematic move in this Benoni Wall (reversed) type of structures. It's an idea that comes up in similar lines of the English/Reti. Here it looks like the perfect time to play it.
  

Dubious, therefore playable Undecided
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #440 - 06/26/19 at 17:39:05
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ReneDescartes wrote on 06/26/19 at 15:22:11:
this is a limitation of GM-Rep-style books, and perhaps of theory, as such!

GM-Rep-style books are written to give the reader a solid base for a repertoire which can be used for many years at a high level (even 2500 elo). So modest lines will be disregarded for more critical ones. Also these books must be pushing the theory further in many lines or at least give an up to date view of the theory (gigantic research is critical).

Players should of course first try to master the books covering their repertoire before making any analysis themselves. As the books are the base for any further work, it is very important that the quality of them is as high as possible.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #439 - 06/26/19 at 16:08:49
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Pantu wrote on 06/26/19 at 10:21:14:
The example given there is 1.c4 e6 2.g3 d5 3.Bg2 Nf6 4.Nf3 d4 5.d3 c5 and now apparently 6.e4! is the move - if 6...dxe3 white is just better and otherwise 7.e5 followed by Qe2/Nbd2 with a good version of the KIA.

I wonder if that is really just good for White ...in the introduction/overview of the latest update, IMDavidCummings didn't appear to think so.
  
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ReneDescartes
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #438 - 06/26/19 at 15:22:11
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That is a good illustration and supports your point well regarding ability.

I would only add that since one has to spend the time to understand how the plan works, learning such a line is not nearly as simple as learning an engine-generated tactical refutation. Faced with a GM-Rep book with many, many such lines, it would be hard in practice to learn the repertoire.

Some time ago, I myself did research into how to play a not-particularly-impressive line in the French which I found interesting. Beyond a point, there were not many games played with it, so I used an engine (not a new linear-algebra engine, but a regular one) to investigate and acquire a strategic understanding of this modest line. As a result, I have had success with it. The point is that investing the time to understand an equal line strategically will pay off even when that line is not shocking, doesn't have to be discovered by an engine, and is somewhat rare, but not new. And one can't expect this kind of education from a detailed repertoire book--this is a limitation of GM-Rep-style books, and perhaps of theory, as such!
« Last Edit: 06/26/19 at 18:41:58 by ReneDescartes »  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #437 - 06/26/19 at 11:02:22
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Pantu wrote on 06/26/19 at 10:21:14:
Heh, I cheated slightly, but 0-0!? looks fun. Or is there something else?

Dorfman makes the same argument as brabo in this interview, specifically with regards to AlphaZero/Leela: https://chess24.com/en/read/news/dorfman-the-real-talent-is-the-ability-to-work-...

The example given there is 1.c4 e6 2.g3 d5 3.Bg2 Nf6 4.Nf3 d4 5.d3 c5 and now apparently 6.e4! is the move - if 6...dxe3 white is just better and otherwise 7.e5 followed by Qe2/Nbd2 with a good version of the KIA.

Consider this: if you have the resources, and are interested in what to do in a variation, let's say the 7.Nd5 Sveshnikov that Carlsen has been playing.  You then set Leela0/AlphaZero to play against itself continuously, learning and improving, for a week from that starting position.  You then check the games and analysis and you find a completely new approach along with a couple of near perfectly played games.  You then prepare this before your next game against a Sveshnikov player and get to display some cutting edge stuff.

The advantage of this approach is that it's fairly effortless - the machine generates ideas. It also tells you if they are worthwhile or not, and demonstrates how to play. A bunch of human grandmasters could generate the same but horribly inefficiently (and much more expensively). 

For the top-level we could see a return to the early computer era where how efficiently you work with the engine (and how big your team working behind it) is a big factor.  Games like Kasimdhzanov-Kasparov, Linares 2005, where 17...0-0!! basically put a line out of commision for white, that was suggested by the engine to Kasparov.  Nowadays the top players have all learned how to use normal engines to find/avoid this stuff, but the next wave is showing another level.

P.S. to Brabo - I appreciate your English language blog and do follow it. 

0-0 is indeed the right answer. My opponent almost fell of his chair when he saw me playing that ridiculous move. I already published the game on my Dutch blog and will later translate it.

The last decades we saw engines becoming continously stronger tactically. Many openinglines were refuted as tactical flaws were discovered.
Today we see indeed a second wave which starts to question also the openings strategically. Till only a couple of years ago it was impossible to get good answers from engines for many strategic problems. You don't need to be a super strong grandmaster to benefit from the second wave.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #436 - 06/26/19 at 10:21:14
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Heh, I cheated slightly, but 0-0!? looks fun. Or is there something else?

Dorfman makes the same argument as brabo in this interview, specifically with regards to AlphaZero/Leela: https://chess24.com/en/read/news/dorfman-the-real-talent-is-the-ability-to-work-...

The example given there is 1.c4 e6 2.g3 d5 3.Bg2 Nf6 4.Nf3 d4 5.d3 c5 and now apparently 6.e4! is the move - if 6...dxe3 white is just better and otherwise 7.e5 followed by Qe2/Nbd2 with a good version of the KIA.

Consider this: if you have the resources, and are interested in what to do in a variation, let's say the 7.Nd5 Sveshnikov that Carlsen has been playing.  You then set Leela0/AlphaZero to play against itself continuously, learning and improving, for a week from that starting position.  You then check the games and analysis and you find a completely new approach along with a couple of near perfectly played games.  You then prepare this before your next game against a Sveshnikov player and get to display some cutting edge stuff.

The advantage of this approach is that it's fairly effortless - the machine generates ideas. It also tells you if they are worthwhile or not, and demonstrates how to play. A bunch of human grandmasters could generate the same but horribly inefficiently (and much more expensively). 

For the top-level we could see a return to the early computer era where how efficiently you work with the engine (and how big your team working behind it) is a big factor.  Games like Kasimdhzanov-Kasparov, Linares 2005, where 17...0-0!! basically put a line out of commision for white, that was suggested by the engine to Kasparov.  Nowadays the top players have all learned how to use normal engines to find/avoid this stuff, but the next wave is showing another level.

P.S. to Brabo - I appreciate your English language blog and do follow it.
  
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brabo
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #435 - 06/26/19 at 05:24:37
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ReneDescartes wrote on 06/25/19 at 18:03:34:
Perhaps Carlsen and Anand have the time and ability to learn how to follow up these engine ideas the way an engine would, in order to cash in the supposed advantage. But is there any evidence that, for an ordinary mortal who might read an opening book and memorize lots of lines, getting the position from such a new move actually gives any practical advantage--that is, in the case which matters most for your argument, the case where a human wouldn't independently produce the same evaluation?


Try to guess which move I played in the position below which I got on the board a couple of months ago in a standard game.
* * * * * * * *
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* * * * * * * *
* * * * * * * *
* * * * * * * *
* * * * * * * *
* * * * * * * *
*
My opponent a FM told me that he played hundreds of games with this opening but never he encountered that idea. He thought for a very long time during the game that black was at least ok. Afterwards he was amazed that I had seen this idea from an engine and an engine evaluates it as strategically close to winning.

Now before I decided to play the idea, I had spent of course some time with the engine to understand why and how it works. This allowed me in the game to capitalize on it. I am rated about 500 points lower than Carlsen and Anand so even at my mediocre level looking and studying games of engines will more and more impact the results.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #434 - 06/25/19 at 18:03:34
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brabo wrote on 06/25/19 at 07:10:30:
proustiskeen wrote on 06/24/19 at 19:21:45:
No doubt SF8 is still plenty strong for Avrukh and others to blundercheck their work.


We are entering a new era in which engines will not be used for only blunderchecking. Till recently it were humans developing the latest trends in the openings. That starts to change which we can already see at the very highest levels. Topplayers start to copy openings played by engines in their matches. I expect we will soon see the rise of new databases with millions maybe even billions of engine games all played at a level way beyond the level of a world-champion and containing a wealth of new ideas. Does this sound ridiculous to you? Well just check the https://lczero.org/ in which the counter is already at quarter of a billion games. Also one of the top novelties used in the latest worldchampionship by Carlsen was directly coming from an engine-match or what about the same 15 moves happening at the same day in a human and engine-match see https://www.chess.com/news/view/fide-grand-prix-moscow-semifinal-chess


Thinking or working with an engine still as only a blunderchecking tool is old school. I predict we will see in the next years a shift to a dominance of engine-games which will largely define the new trends in the openings.


Perhaps Carlsen and Anand have the time and ability to learn how to follow up these engine ideas the way an engine would, in order to cash in the supposed advantage. But is there any evidence that, for an ordinary mortal who might read an opening book and memorize lots of lines, getting the position from such a new move actually gives any practical advantage--that is, in the case which matters most for your argument, the case where a human wouldn't independently produce the same evaluation?

« Last Edit: 06/25/19 at 19:31:11 by ReneDescartes »  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #433 - 06/25/19 at 16:39:16
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proustiskeen wrote on 06/25/19 at 14:59:24:
Chesspub has not been what it once was for a long time, and Avrukh quotes the same correspondence game that Brabo does. (No offence was meant to you, Brabo - thus the emoticon.) Perhaps look at the book before dismissing it because he doesn't cite this forum or use your preferred engine?

A correspondence game can be already irrelevant after 1 year which is here the case.
Avrukh has always been regarded as one of the very best authors. Is it wrong then to expect that he uses the best tools and is aware of all the most recent publications even if it happened on chesspub?
I don't doubt the book is still very good but I was expecting more than that. The standard before was brilliant and after reading your review and interview I only got convinced this isn't the case anymore.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #432 - 06/25/19 at 14:59:24
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Chesspub has not been what it once was for a long time, and Avrukh quotes the same correspondence game that Brabo does. (No offence was meant to you, Brabo - thus the emoticon.) Perhaps look at the book before dismissing it because he doesn't cite this forum or use your preferred engine?
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #431 - 06/25/19 at 14:56:21
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brabo wrote on 06/25/19 at 07:10:30:
proustiskeen wrote on 06/24/19 at 19:21:45:
No doubt SF8 is still plenty strong for Avrukh and others to blundercheck their work.


We are entering a new era in which engines will not be used for only blunderchecking. Till recently it were humans developing the latest trends in the openings. That starts to change which we can already see at the very highest levels. Topplayers start to copy openings played by engines in their matches. I expect we will soon see the rise of new databases with millions maybe even billions of engine games all played at a level way beyond the level of a world-champion and containing a wealth of new ideas. Does this sound ridiculous to you? Well just check the https://lczero.org/ in which the counter is already at quarter of a billion games. Also one of the top novelties used in the latest worldchampionship by Carlsen was directly coming from an engine-match or what about the same 15 moves happening at the same day in a human and engine-match see https://www.chess.com/news/view/fide-grand-prix-moscow-semifinal-chess

Thinking or working with an engine still as only a blunderchecking tool is old school. I predict we will see in the next years a shift to a dominance of engine-games which will largely define the new trends in the openings.


bold emphasis mine

Absolutely.  Already underway. 

The transition is happening quickly and those that don't adapt will fall behind fast.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #430 - 06/25/19 at 13:12:05
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Firstly, you don't have to have a ridiculous computer to use LcO, mine is by no means a juggernaut. Brabo I really enjoy your blog, please do continue to do an English translation. In re the QC question, they are pretty straightforward that much of their work is very much group oriented. I think that neural network engines are going to improve very rapidly, and that good authors are probably making more use of them than perhaps we know. Andrew Greet maybe the unsung hero of the QC team, I think he does a great deal of work on most of the books they publish.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #429 - 06/25/19 at 11:56:58
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proustiskeen wrote on 06/24/19 at 19:21:45:
The SF8 thing I get - it's the contempt setting that's worrisome to some folks, including me. With SF9 and SF10 you can disable the fixed contempt (or compile your own, as I do, with it removed) but there's a dynamic contempt that ramps up or down depending on how the eval jumps, and that's very hard to remove.


This surprised me but checking the code confirms that is true. Stockfish still uses some contempt in analysis even if you disable it. Crazy.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #428 - 06/25/19 at 07:17:49
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To which I'd like to add that the Chesspub forum has build a certain reputation when it comes to analysis; GM Avrukh wouldn't have been the first author to refer to it. Also Brabo in that thread did an excellent job defending White's case (my work wasn't my worst either, but I don't want to compare my analysis skills to his - computers or not, ELO does mean something). The thread is all the more relevant exactly because our conclusion became LeonT's "a positional standing--to get small edge" and hence would suit GM Avrukh's books.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #427 - 06/25/19 at 07:10:30
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proustiskeen wrote on 06/24/19 at 19:21:45:
No doubt SF8 is still plenty strong for Avrukh and others to blundercheck their work.


We are entering a new era in which engines will not be used for only blunderchecking. Till recently it were humans developing the latest trends in the openings. That starts to change which we can already see at the very highest levels. Topplayers start to copy openings played by engines in their matches. I expect we will soon see the rise of new databases with millions maybe even billions of engine games all played at a level way beyond the level of a world-champion and containing a wealth of new ideas. Does this sound ridiculous to you? Well just check the https://lczero.org/ in which the counter is already at quarter of a billion games. Also one of the top novelties used in the latest worldchampionship by Carlsen was directly coming from an engine-match or what about the same 15 moves happening at the same day in a human and engine-match see https://www.chess.com/news/view/fide-grand-prix-moscow-semifinal-chess

Thinking or working with an engine still as only a blunderchecking tool is old school. I predict we will see in the next years a shift to a dominance of engine-games which will largely define the new trends in the openings.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #426 - 06/25/19 at 06:49:23
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proustiskeen wrote on 06/24/19 at 19:21:45:
I'm more concerned that Brabo is willing to dismiss Avrukh's book because he (Avrukh) didn't read Brabo's blog!  Wink


I stated that the analysis were published here on chesspub not my blog so your remark feels like an insult to me. It seems you forgot that I started with the English chess-blog on the request of some readers here as they liked to have an English translation of my Dutch articles. I've spent countless free hours into the translation. This is no a joyful work so I am thinking to stop doing it especially after reading such kind of comments.

Also as stated by Stigma, most books of Quality Chess are collaborative efforts. Ntirlis still regularly checks chesspub (see profile of Ametanoitos). Likely other Quality Chess members also do. So why is this important piece of analysis (which by the way was mainly steered by the German FM Stefan Buecker ) not included into the book. In a blog on Quality Chess see http://www.qualitychess.co.uk/blog/7003 it was mentioned that one of the staff was half of the year ill and it has slowed things a lot. Could it be that this caused them to check less rigorously than usual the quality of this new book? What do you think?
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #425 - 06/24/19 at 20:42:11
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Awrukh's books are based on a positional standing--to get small edge. In my experience with Stockfish is that she tends to overestimate tactics and space.

I wonder if it would be helpful to write books using both Stockfish (or Leela) and Komodo at same time, and using your own intuition to find your own evaluation of position.

Of course doing this might cause computer battery to die  Cheesy
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #424 - 06/24/19 at 19:21:45
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I'm more concerned that Brabo is willing to dismiss Avrukh's book because he (Avrukh) didn't read Brabo's blog!  Wink

The SF8 thing I get - it's the contempt setting that's worrisome to some folks, including me. With SF9 and SF10 you can disable the fixed contempt (or compile your own, as I do, with it removed) but there's a dynamic contempt that ramps up or down depending on how the eval jumps, and that's very hard to remove. Dann Corbitt has done it, but I'm not technically saavy enough to handle it on my own.

No doubt SF8 is still plenty strong for Avrukh and others to blundercheck their work.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #423 - 06/24/19 at 18:38:07
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So basically if some author cannot afford to buy high performance computer that allows Leela to run properly, their opening book is screwed ¿ Surely Stockfish would be at least helpful  Cheesy
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #422 - 06/24/19 at 16:15:27
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With Quality Chess I get the impression that a lot of their books, especially the opening books, are really collaborative efforts with many of the usual suspects (the strong players at the office plus Ntirlis) checking analysis and text, looking for improvements, etc. And surely QC have state-of-the-art hardware and software for analysis at the office?

I would be more worried by this news if Avrukh wrote for a less diligent publisher.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #421 - 06/24/19 at 11:16:01
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I was mildly surprised to hear that, as well. It would be interesting to know what engines different analysts use. i think not using LcO is a handicap to some degree; it is very strong.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #420 - 06/24/19 at 07:18:11
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proustiskeen wrote on 06/23/19 at 22:52:47:
Here's my June review of Boris Avrukh's Grandmaster Repertoire 2B: 1.d4 Dynamic Systems. Readers may want to check out the linked interview with Avrukh referenced at the head of the review.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/06/23/end-of-an-era/

https://new.uschess.org/books/author-chat-boris-avrukh/


Avrukh still uses Stockfish 8. He hasn't yet get acquainted with Lc0. His recommendation against the classical Dutch completely ignores the in-depth analysis done here : https://www.chesspub.com/cgi-bin/chess/YaBB.pl?num=1369191586/60. This analysis was published 15 months ago so if this is missed in a book released this month then I have strong doubts about the overall quality.

I guess that Boris (just like Vladimir Kramnik and many other not so young players) has lost the motivation to do every day the hard work which is needed to keep track of all latest developments in chess. As Boris announced to stop publishing any new books, it is very likely that Boris himself is aware that he needs a new challenge.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #419 - 06/23/19 at 22:52:47
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Here's my June review of Boris Avrukh's Grandmaster Repertoire 2B: 1.d4 Dynamic Systems. Readers may want to check out the linked interview with Avrukh referenced at the head of the review.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/06/23/end-of-an-era/

https://new.uschess.org/books/author-chat-boris-avrukh/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #418 - 05/31/19 at 23:54:49
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They didn't send the entire Luftwaffe to Russia, there were still bombing raids on the British Isles after 1940-41.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #417 - 05/31/19 at 15:01:16
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It appears that I did not do a very good job on fact-checking with this one. My apologies to all.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #416 - 05/31/19 at 05:35:27
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"She ... was killed in London during the Blitz in 1944."
Th Blitz ended in 1941, when the Luftwaffe was send to the Eastern Front.
Menchik was killed by a V-1 missile.
  

The book had the effect good books usually have: it made the stupids more stupid, the intelligent more intelligent and the other thousands of readers remained unchanged.
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #415 - 05/30/19 at 22:44:55
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Yeah, my editors should have caught that one. Smiley
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #414 - 05/30/19 at 14:35:19
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"History is moving beyond the retelling of facts from above, from the perspective of the victor or powerful. Soltis’ book does some of that – how could a book on four World Champions not?"

Shouldn't this be "Three World Champions and a Challenger", or do you count Korchnoi due to the World Senior Championship?

Beyond that, many thanks! I always look forward to these Smiley
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #413 - 05/29/19 at 18:57:24
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My May review of books by Tanner and Soltis is (finally) up. Enjoy!

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/05/28/join-the-club/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #412 - 04/03/19 at 07:56:22
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proustiskeen wrote on 04/03/19 at 01:54:30:
Readers may also be interested in my second appearance on the Perpetual Chess Podcast, which dropped today.

https://omny.fm/shows/perpetual-chess-podcast/ep-120-john-hartmann-returns


Thanks John, looking forward to listening to it. I enjoy these podcasts.
  

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Reply #411 - 04/03/19 at 01:54:30
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Readers may also be interested in my second appearance on the Perpetual Chess Podcast, which dropped today.

https://omny.fm/shows/perpetual-chess-podcast/ep-120-john-hartmann-returns
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #410 - 04/03/19 at 01:53:55
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My April review of Sadler & Regan's _Game Changer._

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/04/01/game-changer/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #409 - 03/05/19 at 02:56:30
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My March review of Joel Benjamin's Better Thinking, Better Chess.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/03/04/filling-a-gap/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #408 - 02/13/19 at 16:54:54
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brabo wrote on 01/18/19 at 09:37:22:
proustiskeen wrote on 01/17/19 at 15:13:13:
Welcome back, chesspubbers!

My January review of Chessbase 15 and Chessable.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/01/02/books-and-beyond/



Another topic which reviews never touch is, when do you recommend Chessbase and when do you think the Fritz interface is sufficient. I notice most chessplayers around me buy once Chessbase and afterwards never buy an upgrade as they used the program barely and consider therefore the price too high.



I think Proustiskeen may have covered this in one of his earlier Christmas buying guides when he also highlighted lower cost/ free options. It certainly should be covered more often in reviews given how expensive the likes of chessbase are now.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #407 - 02/05/19 at 09:27:00
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brabo wrote on 01/30/19 at 20:59:15:
It took some time to do the research but I just translated my article about Chessbase or Fritz Gui to English.
https://chess-brabo.blogspot.com/2019/01/chessbase-15-part-1.html
A second article will focus on Chessbase 15 itself and in a 3rd article I will conclude with why we need or don't need the Big Database.

And now the 2nd article is online. A friend wrote it and he is clearly a big fan of the program. I am almost convinced to buy it.  Huh https://chess-brabo.blogspot.com/2019/02/chessbase-15-part-2.html
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #406 - 02/04/19 at 16:39:52
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A flub on my part:  Dink Heckler was responding to the recent pic of the now septuagenarian "Raymundo" Keene linked below.  I have one of his earlier insty-books (K-K '86, with David Goodman) which I take it may have been better than the latest one.

https://www.flickr.com/photos/gibchess/31953329097/in/album-72157675974758647/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #405 - 02/04/19 at 11:02:46
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brabo wrote on 01/18/19 at 09:37:22:
[quote author=2D2F32282E29342E363838335D0 link=1359867902/398#398 date=1547737993]
"When Garry Kasparov says that ChessBase is the most important innovation in chess since the printing press, he is not exaggerating."
I believe you are misinterpreting Kasparov here.


Isn't that what he said over thirty years ago? He was after all one of the first, if not the first user and his support encouraged the initial founders and developers to realise there was a market for a collection of games searchable by player and opening.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #404 - 02/04/19 at 09:52:40
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He seems to have aged OK (or at least, he got his aging out of the way early) - he looks pretty much the same as I remember him from 30-odd years ago.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #403 - 02/04/19 at 05:23:11
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My February review of books and videos about the 2018 World Championship match.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/02/03/instant-gratification/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #402 - 01/30/19 at 20:59:15
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It took some time to do the research but I just translated my article about Chessbase or Fritz Gui to English.
https://chess-brabo.blogspot.com/2019/01/chessbase-15-part-1.html
A second article will focus on Chessbase 15 itself and in a 3rd article I will conclude with why we need or don't need the Big Database.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #401 - 01/18/19 at 13:41:36
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lnn2 wrote on 01/18/19 at 12:18:45:
It is indeed a pertinent question whether Chessbase or Fritz GUI is sufficient (thank you Brabo for your insightful views as always).

For me the connection to Cloud database is worth the price of Chessbase - seeing immediately the latest games/stats and possible candidates when going through a game is very helpful (I have no time/patience to maintain myself an updated Reference database, and besides the Reference is slow if your computer does not have an SSD).

To rely solely on the cloud, means you always need to have a good internetconnection. That is definitely not everywhere available in the world.
Another worry I have about the cloud is how secure this is. Will you as correspondence player or grandmaster trust your analysis to the cloud or not? We have seen so many times in the last years how fragile the security of a cloud is.

Also I understood that the access and search function are heavily restricted to the online database to avoid overload. You still need your own reference database to get the full experience of Chessbase. However Chessbase does offer an automatic update of the database with the latest played games. 1st year is free but next years you need to pay extra.

Last remark but you will anyway read much more in a next article is that an openingbook is in most cases a much better solution than a reference database. I just created 2 from the latest big database myself. One with games of 1 player having at least 2300 elo and one with games of both players having at least 2500 elo. The first one took my computer 12 hours to create. The second was done in 1 hour. You can also buy such openingbook at Chessbase for 70 euro see https://shop.chessbase.com/en/products/powerbook_2019
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #400 - 01/18/19 at 12:18:45
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It is indeed a pertinent question whether Chessbase or Fritz GUI is sufficient (thank you Brabo for your insightful views as always).

For me the connection to Cloud database is worth the price of Chessbase - seeing immediately the latest games/stats and possible candidates when going through a game is very helpful (I have no time/patience to maintain myself an updated Reference database, and besides the Reference is slow if your computer does not have an SSD).
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #399 - 01/18/19 at 09:37:22
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proustiskeen wrote on 01/17/19 at 15:13:13:
Welcome back, chesspubbers!

My January review of Chessbase 15 and Chessable.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/01/02/books-and-beyond/

"When Garry Kasparov says that ChessBase is the most important innovation in chess since the printing press, he is not exaggerating."
I believe you are misinterpreting Kasparov here. Kasparov has also stated earlier that Chessbase is kindergarten for him and the Fritz interface is for him sufficient. This statement I already mentioned 5 years ago on this forum.
When Kasparov says that Chessbase is the most important innovation then most likely he refers to the firm/ brand and not the single product. Anyway it is a very old statement of almost 20 years ago from Kasparov and Kasparov is already out of competition for almost 14 years so we better listen to other active players.

Another topic which reviews never touch is, when do you recommend Chessbase and when do you think the Fritz interface is sufficient. I notice most chessplayers around me buy once Chessbase and afterwards never buy an upgrade as they used the program barely and consider therefore the price too high.

My personal view is that Chessbase is only more interesting than the Fritz interface for a relative small % of players. I summarize them below.
1) (Professional) trainers -> prepare lessons around certain themes by using the advanced search masks, cloud
2) Students which actively work together with a trainer so share often analysis, homework,... -> cloud
3) Ambitious players/ professionals working together on some chess-projects -> cloud
4) Ambitious players/ professionals working with several devices -> cloud
5) Early adopters/ gadget lovers which just like to have always the latest innovations, features,... and don't bother to pay money for it.
6) Rich players. The price is for them nothing more than some spare change.

I'll write a blogpost in the nearby future about the most important differences between both products to my perspective. For that I put both manuals next to it and make a comparison.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #398 - 01/17/19 at 15:13:13
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Welcome back, chesspubbers!

My January review of Chessbase 15 and Chessable.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2019/01/02/books-and-beyond/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #397 - 11/21/18 at 03:47:38
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Always interesting to read, thanks for sharing.
And not often that one sees the word 'epiphenomenal' in chess publications eh.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #396 - 11/20/18 at 20:45:04
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My December review / roundup of six books I neglected over the past year, slightly early due to the pre-Thanksgiving release of the December Chess Life. Happy holidays!

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/11/20/tis-the-season/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #395 - 11/01/18 at 18:48:54
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My November review of four books related to the upcoming World Championship Match, including Brin-Jonathan Butler's mass market release.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/11/01/world-championship-fever/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #394 - 10/09/18 at 03:34:34
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GMTonyKosten wrote on 05/09/18 at 22:05:44:
This discussion reminded me of a conversation I had with a group of Russian GMs 30 years ago concerning Shereshevsky's book 'Endgame Strategy': I was saying how good it was and how much I liked it, to which I was informed that it was mostly copied from other (Soviet) authors! I have no idea if this is true or not, maybe it was just sour grapes, but it stuck in my memory.


That is hilarious Tony. Indian authors are also not afraid of plagiarizing or stealing others' work completely. I've heard it from the mouths of Grandmasters in the country and who played on Indian teams.

Dvoretsky used copyrighted material in his own books as well, which was in direct violation of the law, but no one cared. That's why I'm chuckling about this hubbub when Shereshevsky violated no laws and actually made these other authors richer. Strictly, you must prove damage done and there certainly wasn't any done by him praising others. Additionally, that's not the definition of plagiarism; he didn't pass off anyone else's work as his own. He cited someone else's books that definitely earned them more money.

Actually, Naroditsky stole - literally word-for-word - entire games with game analysis and not a single note changed from Dvoretsky in his book Mastering Positional Chess. Apparently no one noticed besides me and some people on forums, so he won numerous book of the year awards for it. I closed the book - not only did he steal Dvoretsky's analysis on the famous Botvinnik pawn roller line without changing anything, he even made the exact same errors!

I thought you were going to say that your biggest gripe with Endgame Play is that he cited Alekhine and Capablanca's direct analysis so much. In fact, I see that criticism a lot, but I think that makes the book better. I mean, if you can cite what the actual players were thinking, that can't be a bad thing, so I don't take issue with him for that. Most of the "Soviet School of Chess" stuff is all copied notes from an original source anyway. Does anyone care? Probably just me.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #393 - 10/06/18 at 01:35:56
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My October review of Jay "Coach Jay" Stallings' new series.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/10/05/in-your-faaaaaaaaaace/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #392 - 09/16/18 at 09:22:41
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Stigma wrote on 08/08/18 at 13:58:20:
Many of the chess book review sites I used to follow out there have either disappeared over the years or they're too shallow to bother with, but your reviews are a stellar exception.


Stigma, what do you think of the chess book review website of ChessScotland?:

https://www.chessscotland.com/news-post/book-reviews/

I would describe the ChessScotland reviews as:
* Thoughtful
* Written in an entertaining style (mostly by Ian Marks)
* Critical when justified (see Marks' review of Pandolfini's "Chess Movies", or Browne's "The Stress of Chess")
* Surprisingly numerous

.

Another review website, one that seems to run hot and cold in terms of activity:

http://jeremysilman.com/shop/pc/home.asp
  

GeneM , CastleLong.com , FRC-chess960
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #391 - 09/01/18 at 15:13:30
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My September review of Kislik's Applying Logic in Chess.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/09/01/fascinating-and-frustrating/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #390 - 08/09/18 at 01:40:22
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Congratulations! I remain a fan and always look forward to your new reviews. Here's to another productive year of reviewing!
« Last Edit: 08/09/18 at 12:14:14 by ReneDescartes »  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #389 - 08/08/18 at 13:58:20
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Agreed, this was richly deserved.

Many of the chess book review sites I used to follow out there have either disappeared over the years or they're too shallow to bother with, but your reviews are a stellar exception.

Keep up the good work, and keep alerting us here when you have a new review up!
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #388 - 08/08/18 at 12:15:32
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proustiskeen wrote on 08/08/18 at 04:23:17:
My August 2018 review of a number of books on studies and miniatures.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/08/07/studying-print-on-demand/

Also, some may be interested to read this:

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/08/07/cja-awards-2018/

Congratulations. Well deserved.
  

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Victor Bologan.
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #387 - 08/08/18 at 04:23:17
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My August 2018 review of a number of books on studies and miniatures.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/08/07/studying-print-on-demand/

Also, some may be interested to read this:

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/08/07/cja-awards-2018/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #386 - 07/03/18 at 14:37:16
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My July review of Sam Shankland's _Small Steps to Giant Improvement._

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/07/03/one-small-step/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #385 - 06/06/18 at 13:56:37
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proustiskeen wrote on 06/05/18 at 20:28:52:
My June review of Ramesh RB's Fundamental Chess: Logical Decision Making.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/06/05/decisions-decisions/

I absolutely love this book! Ramesh mentions a lot of concepts I never heard of before.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #384 - 06/06/18 at 01:28:08
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IsaVulpes wrote on 06/05/18 at 22:06:55:
Thank you lots as per usual! Always a pleasure to read.

Am I interpreting "Its target audience – “younger players,” or, in Ramesh’s system, those rated 1500-2400 (!?) – is very wide" correctly as "If you're rated 2000, you will still get plenty out of this book"?

How would you say it stacks up to the Books reviewed in the older Decisionmaking Review ( https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/10/07/making-better-decisions/ )? Are they even comparable, or too different?


I think a 2000 player could get something out of the book. What I was after with the quoted phrase was that the apparent intended range seems insanely wide for one book.

Aagaard's book covers more meta-level material, deeper consideration of thought processes, etc. It's the better book, which takes nothing away from Ramesh, but TITB is just outstanding. (And if you like both, check out Kislik's new book from Gambit. Just got it, can't put it down, but also frustrated by the tone / lack of citations / need for developmental editing.)
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #383 - 06/05/18 at 22:06:55
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Thank you lots as per usual! Always a pleasure to read.

Am I interpreting "Its target audience – “younger players,” or, in Ramesh’s system, those rated 1500-2400 (!?) – is very wide" correctly as "If you're rated 2000, you will still get plenty out of this book"?

How would you say it stacks up to the Books reviewed in the older Decisionmaking Review ( https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/10/07/making-better-decisions/ )? Are they even comparable, or too different?
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #382 - 06/05/18 at 20:28:52
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My June review of Ramesh RB's Fundamental Chess: Logical Decision Making.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/06/05/decisions-decisions/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #381 - 05/23/18 at 21:15:06
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Well more than that, it's called telling people something they would not otherwise know, and in this particular instance it's done no harm at all.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #380 - 05/23/18 at 07:57:01
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katar wrote on 05/22/18 at 03:59:30:
My 2 cents: it is not the place of a review to pronounce that a book's very existence presents moral, ethical, and legal problems. The boundaries of fair use can be surprising sometimes. The more relevant legal concept is "standing."

The legal concept of standing is there to ensure that the courts are not clogged up with people complaining about things that are none of their business. I don't quite see how it is relevant to book reviews. The publishers of a periodical can, if they wish, tell reviewers to stick to the question of whether the book offers value for money, without straying into the question of whether it should have been published. But, if they don't take that line, I don't see anything wrong with a review that does consider that wider question, for the benefit of any readers who may be interested. It's called free speech.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #379 - 05/22/18 at 14:08:41
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proustiskeen wrote on 05/21/18 at 21:27:50:
I'm also well aware, now more so than ever, that once I write something, it's out there for everyone to take as they will. I need to thicken my own skin and learn to ignore the trolls. (Not to say Rene is one of them; indeed, I'm honored by his careful reading ...)


That’s the spirit.  Years ago, I worked on a daily paper.  We had a sportswriter who said the darndest things, and people wrote in to call him names.  I asked him if the letters bothered him, and he said, “No.  You want them to write in.  That’s how you know they’re reading your stuff.” Wink
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #378 - 05/22/18 at 03:59:30
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Bibs wrote on 05/07/18 at 06:14:38:
It is possible that 'IM_Serious' was trying to be funny, but it did not carry well, and it just came across as a rather stupid comment.

This is just spiteful and unnecessary name-calling that adds zero value to the subject matter.  In almost every thread you can find a similarly acidic putdown by a "God Member" to a "Newbie."

I more or less agree with the message behind IM-Serious's comment, which I found succinct and clever.  That makes me stupid and unfunny too, obviously unworthy of intruding into this sacred ground among such luminaries.
My 2 cents: it is not the place of a review to pronounce that a book's very existence presents moral, ethical, and legal problems.  The boundaries of fair use can be surprising sometimes.  The more relevant legal concept is "standing."
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #377 - 05/22/18 at 02:09:59
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Noted and fixed re: Rene and RdC. Thanks for the heads-up.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #376 - 05/22/18 at 01:47:48
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@ErictheRed - I have a cousin who talks like that. Nothing to worry about.

@proustikeen - There is an "RdC" who posts on chesspub, but I don't think he has commented here on Shereshevsky. By RdC did you mean ReneDescartes? Genuinely confused.

@ReneDescartes - Okay, moralizing is bad. Got it. I'm not a fan myself, for different reasons, but at least I can respect that the moralizer has a good intention. For me the higher crime is telling someone what they think, rather than letting them speak for themselves.

ReneDescartes wrote on 05/21/18 at 19:17:28:
In fact, as LeeRoth pointed out, the review undeniably did mislead a substantial portion of readers (including you, Bibs!) into thinking that there was plagiarism.
Speaking just for myself here (a) I was not misled, because in fact there was plagiarism; and (b) the review did not convince me of that, it was Aagaard's post on the qualitychess blog (also linked by dfan here) that convinced me.

@LeeRoth - You twice accused me of misunderstanding, without really having any idea of what my understanding, correct or incorrect, might actually be.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #375 - 05/21/18 at 22:45:56
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Hauge Frank wrote on 05/21/18 at 15:40:26:
I m open it and don't see any enough information there so please guide me about it  Cheesy Cheesy


Can anyone make sense of this?  Not to derail a serious discussion, but perhaps this post/poster should be deleted, counseled, removed, etc.  It looks like a spam bot testing the waters.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #374 - 05/21/18 at 21:27:50
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I thank Bibs for his intervention, but it is unnecessary.

Rene has defended me and my honesty / critical integrity in the past, in this very forum, which is part of what makes his current 'stance' so perplexing. But he is entitled to his opinion, and others may draw what conclusions from it they will.

I'm also well aware, now more so than ever, that once I write something, it's out there for everyone to take as they will. I need to thicken my own skin and learn to ignore the trolls. (Not to say Rene is one of them; indeed, I'm honored by his careful reading, although I resolutely disagree with his conclusions.)
« Last Edit: 05/22/18 at 02:09:04 by proustiskeen »  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #373 - 05/21/18 at 19:17:28
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I said what I said as clearly as I could, not in a fit of passion, but after days of thought and reflection in which John Hartmann's review, as it were, ate away at me and I resisted writing because I knew my comments would alienate some people I respect here, including him. My post expresses both my considered views and my inner nature, and I stand by it.

I never made the charge of dishonesty against Hartmann, and I still do not--that interpretation is an utter misunderstanding. In fact, I have defended him vigorously from the charge of dishonesty in the past and I would continue to do so in the future. I spoke very carefully of the existence of an ulterior ("beyond what is immediate or present") reason for conscious or unconscious hostility. This is structurally similar to pointing out that an official had a conflict of interest without trying to determine what was going on in his consciousness (only structurally--there is no analagous conflict of interest in this case, for in the first place it is normal to to write a review whose tone reflects one's hostility based on loyalty to schools of thought, and in the second place the supposed conflict is nothing publicly agreed-upon, to say the least, but my mere psychological hypothesis, which one will share or not depending on intangibles, and which I did not expect him or others to accept or read without anger: this is why I said only "I believe that such a reason exists ...").

To illustrate this, let us  take--only for the sake of clarification--what might appear to be the "worst" case, and imagine that Hartmann was consciously angry not only about Shereshevsky's use of quotations, but also about the way Shereshevsky treated Watson--even in that case I would not think it dishonest that he should have wanted to manage the connotations of his language so as to make Shereshevsky smell as bad as possible within the denotation: the most I would think (in this imaginary extreme) is that in the strength of his anger he overshot the mark and lost control over the effect of his language, writing words that, rather than merely coloring the picture, induced readers to mistake its shape. This is why I said "it [the review] insinuates," not "you insinuate"--whatever the intent, its language simply functioned that way. In fact, as LeeRoth pointed out, the review undeniably did mislead a substantial portion of readers (including you, Bibs!) into thinking that there was plagiarism.

What ate away at me in the review, what in the end I felt I could not ignore, and what accounts for the intensity evident in my response, was not this overshooting the mark (I have done that myself). No, it was the use in the current situation of a moral attack on the work, an attack which aims not to dispute it, but to destroy it. A moral attack paralyzes--the author's words fade to silence, he moves his mouth but nothing comes out, everything other than the moral question no longer matters. When I see such weapons used in a situation that is not extreme, I recoil, as if I were watching a spider paralyze and wrap up a human being. How crazy this description seems will depend on how (or even if) one senses the psychology of morality and how far one is willing to go with it. Personally, I feel that one of the most dangerous tendencies of our time is a growing puritanism in public discourse and the use of moral condemnation as a weapon, often relying in the background on the reflexive amoral cooperation of money in the attack.

Since my reputation is now involved, I will speak some of myself. A thoughtful friend noted already when I was a young man that I primarily react to the world aesthetically rather than morally, but with what one might call moral intensity. That is my nature, embedded in my reaction to a great deal of philosophy, politics and art, and I take pride in the fact that in my own writing (not here, but under my real name) one never reads direct moral condemnation, though one may read descriptions such as "with goodwill," "noble," "higher," etc., or again "cruel," "betrayal," and so on.

I am an artist, not an academic, and though I believe in strict citation in the academy I think it would be a disaster if the world at large became a macrocosm of academia. Nor is this the first time I have reacted here with psychological and aesthetic disgust against moralizing. Here is my reaction to a previous incident:
Quote:
It is clear from NN's posts ... that the underlying impulse is not a campaign to raise scholarly standards ... but to discredit and hurt the offender in return for a perceived slight. Like an obedient but repressed driver who remorselessly retaliates within the law against a rival who has broken the law, NN may be technically in the right, but hardly seems to be coming from a higher place...


If you look carefully, you will see that even in my reactions to posts that I think are unfair, I may speak of self-respect or nobility or rationality, but I am at pains not to be taken as moralizing:
ReneDescartes wrote on 03/07/18 at 12:49:32:
Bondefanger wrote on 03/07/18 at 12:14:23:
First off - sorry if I offended some by using the word "suck" to mean "very bad". I didn't expect that. I'll try to use more bland words in the future.

It's not the word "suck, " but reasoning from an exaggeration that sucks. (I thought was happening in your post, no offense intended.) I was also using your expression to comment on the reasoning of those players previously mentioned who react to being called opening experts as if they were being disparaged, some of whom may also be using the same "transition from quantity to quality." Everyone has his own style--mine is more formal, but a diet of bland writing bites the big one.


Not that I endorse lying, cheating, gratuitous cruelty, etc.: in the face of extreme enough cases of them I will at times react with frank violence, myself wishing to destroy rather than refute, even here in the chess forum:
ReneDescartes wrote on 10/06/13 at 14:49:32:
The only reply Ivanov and his defenders deserve:

E x t e r n i m a t e !

http://s10.postimg.org/y1dijh3y1/externimate3.jpg

But I also do not wish to be taken for something other than what I am, and although I know I may lose some friends here as a result of these matters, I stand by my post.

"But what sort of difference ... causes anger and hatred among men? ...It is disagreement about what is just and unjust, honorable and dishonorable, right and wrong..." --Socrates, in the Euthyphro.



« Last Edit: 05/22/18 at 16:28:35 by ReneDescartes »  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #372 - 05/21/18 at 15:40:26
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I m open it and don't see any enough information there so please guide me about it  Cheesy Cheesy
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #371 - 05/21/18 at 10:02:12
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Bit baffled by this. Are there really people who think the massively chunked grab-and-copy-and-paste of Shereshevsky is okay? Via the wacky double-translate? I cannot think any editor would knowingly allow that. One must indeed query what the translator(s) were up to as well, yes. And it seems the chess publishing houses have duly agreed that this is not okay.

Out of interest, was there a retraction of the allegation that the reviewer was writing in that critical way due to his connection with another chess player and writer? A retraction and apology would certainly seem appropriate from ReneDescartes in this regard.

Right, back to chess, and the forthcoming World Cup footie...

  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #370 - 05/21/18 at 06:23:26
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Some thoughts
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #369 - 05/21/18 at 02:50:40
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You've apparently misunderstood.  The "case under discussion" has nothing to do with copying an entire work.  Shereshevsky did not do that and no one has accused him of doing that.       

You may have missed Rene's point, as well.  I don't think he was saying that the Russian publisher actually had a license or permission.  I think he was saying that, in the rush to condemn, no one considered that possibility, even though it would have explained the decision to translate from English to Russian to English.

But, for that, you'll have to ask Rene.

 




  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #368 - 05/21/18 at 00:45:54
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That’s not an example. It’s the “circumstances” that are important, which is why I asked for an example. Then we can see how it ralates relates to the case under discussion.

Also, it would have been good form to provide a citation for the quote you gave.

In my opinion ReneDescartes’s speculation about Russian permissions was highly unlikely, Justinhorton’s objection missed the point, and your bringing up whole works was obscuring the issue. So I tried to bring the discussion back to earth by asking for an example.
« Last Edit: 05/21/18 at 14:06:57 by an ordinary chessplayer »  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #367 - 05/21/18 at 00:28:23
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an ordinary chessplayer wrote on 05/20/18 at 22:14:58:
Please give an example of a whole work being quoted that was deemed to be fair use.


Courtesy of the US copyright office:

“That said, some courts have found use of an entire work to be fair under certain circumstances. And in other contexts, using even a small amount of a copyrighted work was determined not to be fair because the selection was an important part—or the “heart”—of the work.“











  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #366 - 05/20/18 at 22:14:58
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Please give an example of a whole work being quoted that was deemed to be fair use.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #365 - 05/20/18 at 20:36:23
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Justinhorton wrote on 05/19/18 at 08:46:20:
ReneDescartes wrote on 05/08/18 at 23:19:39:
Moreover, it does not seem to have occurred to anyone that the inexplicable retranslations from English to Russian back into English might precisely preserve those rights under the law if an licensing agreement with the Russian Chess Federation exists.


This is some nonsense here. You can't lift huge chunks of somebody else's work without permission, that's what copyright's all about. And you don't get round copyright by retranslating a work so that the words are changed round a bit.



He’s not saying it was OK to do without permission, he’s saying that they might have had permission.   “if an licensing agreement ... exists”. 

And, btw, you may be able to lift large chunks without permission if it’s deemed to be fair use.  In the US, the length of the quote is a factor in determining fair use.  In general, the longer the quote the more likely it is to infringe, but this is still only a factor, not a bright line test, and it has to be weighed against other factors.  Long quotes, whole chapters, and even an entire work have been found to be fair use.



  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #364 - 05/19/18 at 08:46:20
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ReneDescartes wrote on 05/08/18 at 23:19:39:
Moreover, it does not seem to have occurred to anyone that the inexplicable retranslations from English to Russian back into English might precisely preserve those rights under the law if an licensing agreement with the Russian Chess Federation exists.


This is some nonsense here. You can't lift huge chunks of somebody else's work without permission, that's what copyright's all about. And you don't get round copyright by retranslating a work so that the words are changed round a bit.

  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #363 - 05/10/18 at 04:12:26
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Dvoretsky has written in a couple of places that Endgame Strategy was based on his own lesson plans, which he graciously allowed Shereshevsky to use for a book. I think of Endgame Strategy as part of the "Dvoretsky canon" for that reason.

Much of those old Dvoretsky lesson plans may have been copied from others with some added commentary, so the question is how much Shereshevsky changed and added before publishing.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #362 - 05/09/18 at 22:05:44
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This discussion reminded me of a conversation I had with a group of Russian GMs 30 years ago concerning Shereshevsky's book 'Endgame Strategy': I was saying how good it was and how much I liked it, to which I was informed that it was mostly copied from other (Soviet) authors! I have no idea if this is true or not, maybe it was just sour grapes, but it stuck in my memory.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #361 - 05/09/18 at 19:19:17
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dfan wrote on 05/09/18 at 14:00:44:
Jacob Aagaard's comments

I refrained from cutting and pasting them Smiley

A very positive turn of events!

The reactions by both Quality Chess and New in Chess are exemplary. Now if permissions are in place and corrections are forthcoming, I may even buy the book eventually; it sounds like it has some interesting points.

P.S.: I don't want to stoke the fires here, but it is surprising to see suggestions that it's OK to pass off a "teaching compendium" with large swathes of others' texts as your own book chapter(s). Even if you're adding your own comments to the texts, this is a different genre from a single-author work with quotes within fair use, one which requires explicit permission for and crediting of each source. That some readers enjoy the end result is no excuse.

Most good chess authors who argue with and quote each other manage this just fine without using excessive direct quotes or parahrases.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #360 - 05/09/18 at 14:00:44
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Jacob Aagaard's comments

I refrained from cutting and pasting them Smiley
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #359 - 05/09/18 at 13:36:30
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Fair enough.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #358 - 05/09/18 at 12:42:51
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Wow. I've had some uncharitable readings of the piece, but this one takes the cake.

The point of the review is simple: there are legal, technical, and ethical problems with this book. (a) Shereshevsky and his English-language editors ignored the rights of other copyright holders when they published this book. (b) They do not give page numbers or titles / editions for quotes, and they re-translate English-language material back into English. That's inadequate. (c) There is a severe ethical problem with 'conducting,' as you put it, or taking thousands of words from the work of others, writing around it, and then putting your name on the final product.

That you think Shereshevsky had interesting ideas is irrelevant. This is a product corrupted by its flaws.

[Update: I think this is the key difference between me and those who would let Shereshevsky / NIC off the hook for the three issues above. That the ideas are interesting is, really, irrelevant. I actually agree with some of what Rene is saying here. It's interesting to see which texts from Dvoretsky, Nunn, Beim, Gelfand, Lipnitsky, Kramnik, etc etc etc, he decides to take his long quotations from. It's interesting to see how he plays them off each other, although I'd argue that it's much less profound than Rene says - it's 'he said, he said, oh that's interesting, let's move on' on my read. (Rene also ignores the obvious pro-Putin slant of the book and how it colors the material on Tukmakov. That's some, not all, of gossip I was referring to.)

'Conducting' isn't the same thing as authorship. A personal notebook of material copied from other authors isn't a publishable book. The analogy to a course reader is perhaps closer, but there (a) you have to get permission to include material in a course reader, and (b) you don't claim that you're the author of the reader at the end of it! This is the crux of the whole argument. I don't think it's morally right to do what Shereshevsky did in either language, and it wasn't legally permissable in the English edition. (I'll leave Russian copyright law, and how it is ignored, to the Russia experts.) It's stunning to me that anyone can willfully overlook this because the 'ideas are interesting.']

I'm not going to debate you point by point, but two of your most asinine claims need to be dealt with:

(1) "Moreover, it does not seem to have occurred to anyone that the inexplicable retranslations from English to Russian back into English might precisely preserve those rights under the law if an licensing agreement with the Russian Chess Federation exists."

It did occur to me, although I thought it was a way of getting around copyright. (I'm less charitable than you.) That's why I contacted multiple affected publishers and a legal expert, none of whom agreed with your theory.

(2) What's immoral [note: that word does not appear in the review!] is your attribution of ulterior motives to my work. It's borderline slanderous, in fact, and utterly without basis. If there's one thing that people can trust when they read what I write, it's that I'm honest. You don't have to agree with it, but it's an honest assessment.

You need to get the balance of your humours checked, Rene.
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #357 - 05/09/18 at 04:00:34
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Clearly stated; thanks for sharing your perspective, Rene. It gives a better understanding of the issues being addressed. On the other hand, I don't think it's very productive to speculate about motives.
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #356 - 05/08/18 at 23:19:39
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Some aspects of the review trouble me.

We read that Shereshevsky engages in "copying of other author's [sic.] works,"  "fails to adequately cite the passages he takes," and "reads like a freshman's plagiarized term paper." "Copying" is ambiguous. Does it mean fraudulent imitation or unauthorized reproduction? "Fails to adequately cite" is ambiguous. Does it mean "fails to cite" or "fails to use standard expected formats in citation"? "Reads like a freshman's plagiarized term paper" is ambiguous. Does it mean "contains as much plagiarism as a plagiarized term paper" or "reminds one of the rhythm of original and quoted material in a plagiarized term paper"? In each of these cases the milder of the two interpretations actually obtains, but the review does not clarify that, though it easily might have. In other words, it makes insinuations that go beyond the facts.

Part III of Shereshevsky's book reads not like a freshman's plagiarized term paper (those lack quotation marks and crediting asides), but like a bundled compendium of important recent chess thought for the Russian chess school--an annotated course reader--which it partly is. A copyright violation for using Xerox machines to generate a course reader is a matter of quite a lower order from passing off someone else's thought as one's own. No one is thrown from office years later in a scandal over Xerox rights. Moreover, it does not seem to have occurred to anyone that the inexplicable retranslations from English to Russian back into English might precisely preserve those rights under the law if an licensing agreement with the Russian Chess Federation exists. Perhaps this is poetic justice for Nunn's producing his gratuitously-edited version of Fischer's classic, a version which has been described as "My 60 Unforgettable Games." But why should gray areas of royalty disputes be of concern to the reader?

What is the defect of the citations in the book? Mostly, the absence of page numbers and the fact that where Shereshevsky quotes from only one work of an author, he names the work only in the first quote and thereafter only names the author. Once that is understood, there is not a quote in the book (at least not that I could find) for which there is doubt about the author, the title of the work cited, or which words are and are not Shereshevsky's.  One of the worst-cited quotes is that of Nunn's first passage on DAUT. At the end of one Shereshevsky chapter, on p.235, we get "We will now move on from Beim's work to John Nunn's excellent work Secrets of Practical Chess.." On the next page, at the head of a new chapter, we get simply "John Nunn: 'DAUT. This means ...<long quote>' " Now, that will not do as a citation in an academic journal, but in practice there is hardly a problem, especially given that the work in question contains a chapter called DAUT. Other quotes are generally in much better shape. "I would like to quote an excerpt from Mikhail Krasnekov's previously-mentioned article 'Wandering in the Wilds.'; "Now we will study the comments of Grandmaster Denis Khismatullin in the Magazine 64-Chess Review No. 4/2015"; and so on. True, after a quote has been introduced, subsequent quotes from the same work are often just attributed to the author. --This is what is meant by the depraved-sounding "fails to adequately cite."

Furthermore, the review seems needlessly dismissive. A discussion of the meaning of "genius" may be unimportant, but Shereshevsky's original method for combating time trouble given in Part III, on pp. 277-278, a method I have never seen and now plan to use myself, certainly does not constitute "banalities or gossip." Nor does Shereshevsky's revalatory clarification of Karpov's thought process on p. 281: "As for inaccuracies in his analysis of secondary lines [in the previous game against Spassky analyzed by Beim], they are caused by the fact that the future world champion hardly analyzed them. He just knew that he had an advantage in those lines, and how to deal with them is something he would work out if and when he came to it. In other words, Karpov [when making his 25th move in against Spassky] saw [the main line up to] the light at the end of the tunnel, i,e. 32. Qg5!!, and only looked around at the side variations relatively briefly." In fact, Shereshevsky generously attributes this visiom to Beim, who is, however, much more unclear about it if he even meant it.

The mention of a "freshman's ... term paper" is also gratuitously condescending (not that that's bad--I enjoy acid writing at times, and I've written some pretty insulting things about, e.g. Naroditsky. But I have another point in mind). So is the remark on the chapter "Laziness" that mostly consists of words by Nunn: "The title of [that] chapter? 'Laziness.' You couldn’t make it up if you tried." But did anyone think to ask why Shereshevsky should ever have entitled a chapter on opening analysis "Laziness?"  --As a matter of fact, it is not Shereshevsky on whom irony has been lost here. On the contrary, that subtle author, with gentle self-deprecation, confesses to laziness in introducing the Nunn quote: "It seemed very important to me to show the reader the application of the principle of 'DAUT' in home analysis of questionable opening schemes. ... I tried this good intention myself and found that it is like other such good intentions [in that I am too lazy to do it--R.D.]. So...I decided to present Nunn's own version and not waste time" (p. 244). Hence the chapter title.

Now, even if proustiskeen had noticed this, I have no doubt that he would still have disapproved of the quote; and I believe that he genuinely finds the "conducting" method illegitimate, even repulsive. Maybe he's even right--I don't insist on my view. Yet something more nags at me.

LeeRoth wrote on 05/03/18 at 14:57:25:
Everything is quoted and attributed.  YMMV, but I personally found John's review a bit unfair and perhaps a little too self-righteous in this regard -- the book is condemned on this basis alone and two posters here have already gotten the impression, based on the review, that Shereshevsky is "stealing" other people's ideas.

Indeed, given that (1) Chess Life has the largest circulation of any chess magazine in the world, (2) the attack on Shereshevsky's book leaves the impression that the author and publisher and hence the purchaser are morally compromised, (3) very little time in the review is devoted to Shereshevsky's chess ideas; that hence (4) the effect of the review is not to disagree with or criticize or even mock Shereshevsky's ideas but to prevent people from reading them, first by implicating purchasers of the book and second by pressuring the publisher to withdraw it (this is really playing hardball--we all know in what a cowardly manner public-entertainment companies in this era fold to mere allegations of bad behavior by someone associated with them); and that (5) the review is condescending and insinuates graver offenses than exist ("I said it read like a student's plagiarized term paper")--given all that, one might wonder whether proustiskeen has some ulterior reason for animus against this book, conscious or unconscious.

I believe that such a reason exists in Shereshevsky's omission, dismissal, and psychological diagnosis (including, notably, the word "immoral") of the work of proustiskeen's teacher and chess mentor John Watson.

I respect Watson--and Hartmann: we all have our excesses--but I just bought a second copy of The Shereshevsky Method, a hard copy in addition to my ForwardChess one, to show my support for Shereshevsky and NIC in this matter.
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #355 - 05/07/18 at 06:14:38
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It is possible that 'IM_Serious' was trying to be funny, but it did not carry well, and it just came across as a rather stupid comment.

Plagiarism is a serious issue. It is stealing, with a lazy cherry on top.
For chess, see also: Keene, Naroditsky, Grivas.

Careful plagiarists! "Winter is coming", as they say: http://www.chesshistory.com/winter/extra/copying.html
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #354 - 05/06/18 at 15:06:29
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IM_Serious wrote on 05/06/18 at 04:51:52:
Someone should definitely check into that, right?
You can check it yourself, just by watching the credits at the end.

The non-fiction book I am currently reading does not have any permissions. Oh, wait, the author wrote it all himself. But surely he should have credited the many illustrations he used? Um, no, "Illustrated by the Author".

The non-fiction book I most recently finished has two-and-a-half pages of closely-packed acknowledgements at the front. Here is one I selected at random:
Quote:
Unitas Spiritus abridged from THE MYSTICAL THEOLOGY OF ST. BERNARD, translated by A. H. C. Downes. Published by Sheed & Ward, 1940. Reprinted by permission of Cecile J. Gilson;


If a reviewer sees large swaths of quoted text, he ought to check whether it is credited. I expect that, because I would do it myself, and I want to know. Then again, I always watch the movie credits as well.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #353 - 05/06/18 at 14:32:14
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IM_Serious wrote on 05/06/18 at 04:51:52:
For example last night, I was watching The Departed (2006).

Wow, that's a fantastic movie, but it opens with a song from The Rolling Stones.

That's right, Gimme Shelter plays for almost 2 minutes, can you believe it?

So, I wonder if they got proper permission to use that song.

Someone should definitely check into that, right?


Of course directors and studios get permission and likely pay for any music they use in their movies. Unlike chess publishers (?) they have to handle these things correctly, or they may get sued! There have sometimes been conflicts over this, but is there any reason to think there should be one in this case?

Scorsese even directed a two-hour documentary on the Rolling Stones (Shine a Light, 2008), so they seem to be on good terms.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #352 - 05/06/18 at 14:30:24
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IM_Serious wrote on 05/06/18 at 04:51:52:
For example last night, I was watching The Departed (2006).

Wow, that's a fantastic movie, but it opens with a song from The Rolling Stones.

That's right, Gimme Shelter plays for almost 2 minutes, can you believe it?

So, I wonder if they got proper permission to use that song.

Of course they did.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #351 - 05/06/18 at 04:51:52
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I made the horrible mistake of reading Shereshevsky's book before checking with any reviewers..

I thought the book was great -- a kind of a modern-day "Battle of Chess Ideas."

Somehow while reading, I was never concerned that the quoted passages were too long, or that maybe the publisher didn't get permission.

I guess this is why we need  professional  book reviewers.

Even so, I wonder exactly how that works.

For example last night, I was watching The Departed (2006).

Wow, that's a fantastic movie, but it opens with a song from The Rolling Stones.

That's right, Gimme Shelter plays for almost 2 minutes, can you believe it?

So, I wonder if they got proper permission to use that song.

Someone should definitely check into that, right?

  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #350 - 05/04/18 at 06:01:18
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Stigma wrote on 05/03/18 at 23:51:23:
Thanks for refreshing my memory. Yes, I was thinking of your work on outing Keene, but I see now it's worse than I recalled.

Did the Times or the Spectator ever take action on these findings?


No. They did nothing.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #349 - 05/03/18 at 23:51:23
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Justinhorton wrote on 05/03/18 at 18:05:08:
Stigma wrote on 05/03/18 at 16:15:48:
There have been some notable accusations in the West, i.e. against Keene (though maybe that was mostly about self-plagiarization?)


No it wasn't (although there was plenty of that too).

Thanks for refreshing my memory. Yes, I was thinking of your work on outing Keene, but I see now it's worse than I recalled.

Did the Times or the Spectator ever take action on these findings? It looks like in the chess world plagiarism has no real consequences (apart from some well-deserved online shaming in Keene's case).

Out of curiosity I googled the Naroditsky book I alluded to: Mastering Positional Chess. New in Chess often update their books, but I haven't found any updated edition of this one, only the original from 2010. More tellingly the book has disappeared from New in Chess' own website.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #348 - 05/03/18 at 19:03:15
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It's not quoted and attributed. There are almost no page references, and in most cases, no titles or sources given. That's why I say that he does not "adequately cite."

This also doesn't materially change my key problems with the book: (a) the publishers didn't get permission to use the material in English before going to press, (b) they retranslated material from once-translated Russian (as someone who has worked extensively with foreign language sources / translations in another field, I can say that you simply don't do this), and (c) there's an ethical problem with quoting pages upon pages of someone else's work and then putting your name on the title page.

LeeRoth wrote on 05/03/18 at 14:57:25:
The Shereshevsky book is basically a re-packaging of his earlier work.  But that is the whole point.  The Soviet Chess Conveyer was an English-language work that was never printed in Russian.  This new book, which was originally printed in Russian, was intended in large part to fill that gap.  

Shereshevsky has a rambling style that isn't for everyone.  His presentation of other author's thoughts is meant to be a survey of modern chess thinking and there are some nuggets of wisdom for the reader who is willing to do the work.  At one point, Shereshevsky presents a conversation between Sakaev and Dvoretsky (which I think comes from a Dvoretsky book) where Dvoretsky weighs in on a debate that we just had here at the ChessPub about how to think about a chess position. 

[A digression:  Dvoretsky's basic point is that players learn to grasp positions intuitively, based on their experience and judgment, and don't select candidate moves by marching through some careful analysis of positional characteristics.]

I personally don't find anything wrong with the way Shereshevsky presents this in the book and I agree with Rene that it is not dishonest.  Everything is quoted and attributed.  YMMV, but I personally found John's review a bit unfair and perhaps a little too self-righteous in this regard -- the book is condemned on this basis alone and two posters here have already gotten the impression, based on the review, that Shereshevsky is "stealing" other people's ideas.   

John does have a point that Shereshevsky's contributions to the debate and comments are often minimal to the point of merely introducing other's thoughts, and this is certainly a fair thing to criticize in a review.  One does get the feeling that there wasn't a whole lot of effort put in to the presentation of this material.
 


 

  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #347 - 05/03/18 at 18:26:51
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Obviously this isn't the same thing (in fact, pace Samuel Jackson, it's not even the same sport). But "not as bad as Ray Keene" isn't much of a recommendation, is it?

I find the whole thing extraordinary, and perhaps the most extraordinary thing is the retranslation of Nunn back into English rather than use the original English text. I guess I'd be interested to know whether there's a Russian edition of Secrets Of Practical Chess, whether Shereshevsky was quoting from that and whether he had permission to do so (I'm guessing not, on the last count at least, but I'd be keen to know for sure) but at any rate, without express permission you can't just extract pages of somebody else's work and claim "fair use". I don't think I've come across anything quite like it.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #346 - 05/03/18 at 18:05:08
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Stigma wrote on 05/03/18 at 16:15:48:
There have been some notable accusations in the West, i.e. against Keene (though maybe that was mostly about self-plagiarization?)


No it wasn't (although there was plenty of that too).
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #345 - 05/03/18 at 16:39:39
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Now I googled "quoting with permission" and read up on it. Okay, it is complicated, but not that complicated. I think Shereshevsky needed to get permission here.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #344 - 05/03/18 at 16:15:48
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LeeRoth wrote on 05/03/18 at 14:57:25:
I personally don't find anything wrong with the way Shereshevsky presents this in the book and I agree with Rene that it is not dishonest.  Everything is quoted and attributed.  YMMV, but I personally found John's review a bit unfair and perhaps a little too self-righteous in this regard -- the book is condemned on this basis alone and two posters here have already gotten the impression, based on the review, that Shereshevsky is "stealing" other people's ideas. 

I admit that I took John's word for this. After so many good and thought-provoking reviews I have some trust in his judgment. I haven't seen the book myself.

That said, fair use is sometimes tricky but far from impossible, especially when you have editors to help you. Academics and all kinds of non-fiction authors deal with this all the time, switching between situating, quoting, paraphrasing, elaborating and responding as appropriate. The gold standard is presenting someone else's argument in a new or even better way than they did themselves.

Normally you don't want to quote so much from another author that even the most interested reader has no reason to consult the original source anymore (on that particular topic).

I haven't noticed problems of this magnitude in other Soviet or Russian sources, by Dvoretsky or Kotov for instance. The Soviet Union doesn't have the best reputation for respecting copyright, so I'm sure there are examples I'm not aware of.

There have been some notable accusations in the West, i.e. against Keene (though maybe that was mostly about self-plagiarization?) and against a young American author who sailed a bit too close to Dvoretsky in some examples in his first book. Incidentally also a New in Chess book.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #343 - 05/03/18 at 14:57:25
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The Shereshevsky book is basically a re-packaging of his earlier work.  But that is the whole point.  The Soviet Chess Conveyer was an English-language work that was never printed in Russian.  This new book, which was originally printed in Russian, was intended in large part to fill that gap.  

Shereshevsky has a rambling style that isn't for everyone.  His presentation of other author's thoughts is meant to be a survey of modern chess thinking and there are some nuggets of wisdom for the reader who is willing to do the work.  At one point, Shereshevsky presents a conversation between Sakaev and Dvoretsky (which I think comes from a Dvoretsky book) where Dvoretsky weighs in on a debate that we just had here at the ChessPub about how to think about a chess position. 

[A digression:  Dvoretsky's basic point is that players learn to grasp positions intuitively, based on their experience and judgment, and don't select candidate moves by marching through some careful analysis of positional characteristics.]

I personally don't find anything wrong with the way Shereshevsky presents this in the book and I agree with Rene that it is not dishonest.  Everything is quoted and attributed.  YMMV, but I personally found John's review a bit unfair and perhaps a little too self-righteous in this regard -- the book is condemned on this basis alone and two posters here have already gotten the impression, based on the review, that Shereshevsky is "stealing" other people's ideas.   

John does have a point that Shereshevsky's contributions to the debate and comments are often minimal to the point of merely introducing other's thoughts, and this is certainly a fair thing to criticize in a review.  One does get the feeling that there wasn't a whole lot of effort put in to the presentation of this material.
 


 
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #342 - 05/02/18 at 09:00:21
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Stigma wrote on 05/02/18 at 01:52:54:
Thanks for the review. Thorough and relevant as always.

The Sakaev/Landa books sound great. But as someone who's looked at or browsed (studied would be an overstatement for most of them) many of the strategy classics, I wonder how many of the positions I would recognize? I hope they have made an effort to avoid the most well-known historical games.

I had thought of buying The Shereshevsky Method for the updates to Endgame Strategy, but that's out of the question now. I can't support this way of stealing other people's writings.

What were New in Chess thinking!?


I echo Sigma's sentiments. I've lost my copy of the Soviet Chess Conveyer and had hoped that this would be worth purchasing to replace that.

Sadly, this now doesnt sound like a book i would be keen to purchase (and wonder if the text has been printed without permission whether the book will be available for long anyway)
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #341 - 05/02/18 at 01:52:54
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Thanks for the review. Thorough and relevant as always.

The Sakaev/Landa books sound great. But as someone who's looked at or browsed (studied would be an overstatement for most of them) many of the strategy classics, I wonder how many of the positions I would recognize? I hope they have made an effort to avoid the most well-known historical games.

I had thought of buying The Shereshevsky Method for the updates to Endgame Strategy, but that's out of the question now. I can't support this way of stealing other people's writings.

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #340 - 05/01/18 at 20:38:19
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Yes, now I see it--you said, "at least one publisher has confirmed to me that no ... permission was granted for English language use of their intellectual property." I am not sure how the law views English translations of Russian works which have been granted permission for the quotes--QC may not like it, but the law may not agree with QC.

I strongly disagree with you about dishonesty, though I respect your opinion.
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #339 - 05/01/18 at 18:22:56
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Do note that I said it read like a student's plagiarized term paper, not that he plagiarized. The next sentence in the review completes the analogy.

That said, I'd argue that the 'conducting' technique, as you describe it, is intellectually dishonest whether it meets the technical requirements of plagiarism or not, and whether NIC had rights to the material or not. (To answer your question, yes, I do know whether they did or not, and it's in the review.)
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #338 - 05/01/18 at 18:02:59
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I've already expressed my admiration for the book.

The Soviet Chess Conveyor employs the same style of long quotes--from Znosko-Borovsky and Lipnitsky, for one. Perhaps Shereshevsky is once more applying low, or criminal, Soviet-style copyright standards to modern works: I don't know whether NIC acquired rights to the excerpts or not--do you?

Copyright issues aside, I find the results of Shereshevsky's use of excerpts to conduct (in the musical sense) a discussion between authors with opposing views (here, e.g, Nunn and Sakaev on a game of Anand; in the Conveyor, Znosko-Borovsky and Lipnitsky) extremely interesting. And I would strongly argue that whatever Shereshevsky is doing--for example, intellectual-property theft--it is not plagiarizing, and not dishonorable as is plagiarizing; for his use of quotes accomplishes, and is meant to accomplish, the very opposite of taking credit for others' ideas.

As far as laziness is concerned, perhaps this charge is justified. I wasn't impressed with the opening section, for example. But the much shorter--without doubt scrupulously legal, but still long (especially proportionally)--quotes in many book reviews strike me as an acceptable labor-saving device: why paraphrase if what you really want to say is exactly what the author said, and you don't want to take credit for it? --Because of copyright, of course.
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #337 - 05/01/18 at 16:16:47
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My review of new translations of Russian books by Sakaev/Landa and Shereshevsky.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/05/01/a-russian-revival/
  
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Reply #336 - 04/02/18 at 02:27:20
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My review of recent opening repertoire books from Collins and Moret, and with a special appearance by the late chesspub legend Mark "Markovich" Morss.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/04/01/opening-lines/
  
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Reply #335 - 03/30/18 at 15:00:01
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Thanks! I worked hard on that one. It'll be up on the blog on April 1st (no fooling!) for those unlucky souls who don't subscribe.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #334 - 03/30/18 at 05:32:53
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John, In the April 2018 Chess Life mag, I very much like how your book review column is a compare & contrast among multiple specific books.

I come away with a clearer impression of each book due to each book being gauged to a firmer reference point (another book) than can be conveyed when only a single book is judged on a presumed absolute scale.

"Opening Lines: Which opening is right for you?"

One thesis of the review is interesting too:
"... some openings are better than others if improvement ... is our goal."
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #333 - 03/02/18 at 18:49:52
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proustiskeen wrote on 03/02/18 at 17:54:10:

I also bought and read the book. I very much liked it. A different angle of it was shown in my article http://chess-brabo.blogspot.com/2017/04/dogmas-part-2.html
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #332 - 03/02/18 at 17:54:10
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #331 - 02/20/18 at 19:21:52
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Of potential interest to those who enjoy my writing: I was interviewed on the Perpetual Chess Podcast.

https://www.perpetualchesspod.com/new-blog/2018/2/20/episode-60-john-hartmann-bo...
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #330 - 02/02/18 at 03:50:19
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My February review of five recent endgame books.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/02/01/eat-your-oatmeal/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #329 - 01/02/18 at 16:13:20
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ErictheRed wrote on 01/02/18 at 00:19:08:
Stigma wrote on 01/01/18 at 23:48:50:
But what I really want to know about Lombardy (about his final book Understanding Chess: My System, My Games, My Life, really) is whether there actually is a system there?


Has there ever been?  I don't personally think that Nimzovich had one, or Berliner, or anyone else who claims to have developed one.


Modern authors have evolved, now promoting a "Method" 

Dorfman 2001 amazon.com/dp/2957289024/

Grivas 2017 amazon.com/dp/615579300X/

Shereshevsky 2018 amazon.com/dp/9056917641/

  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #328 - 01/02/18 at 01:21:49
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Yes, it was an excellent and interesting review.

And Stigma, I wasn't dismissing your other questions by not quoting them.  I was simply responding only to the part of your post that I quoted.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #327 - 01/02/18 at 01:20:19
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You put a beautiful ending on your review. In a way, Lombardy's book sounds like a negative companion piece to Danny Gormally's autobiographical work, in which the author confesses his debasement and thereby rises above it (following Czeslaw Milosz's very difficult advice to writers: focus on those times when you felt humiliated).

The Nietzsche allusion is all the more surprising for the fact that William Lombardy was a Catholic priest! So Lombardy is consciously casting himself as speaking heresy in the name of egoism. A highly complex and, as Freud would say, overdetermined gesture.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #326 - 01/02/18 at 00:24:52
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ErictheRed wrote on 01/02/18 at 00:19:08:
Has there ever been?  I don't personally think that Nimzovich had one, or Berliner, or anyone else who claims to have developed one.

I agree, that's why I added some less grandiose questions, which you chose not to quote...

Lombardy's title suggests some sort of "system", but yeah, usually that's just a sales trick or a delusion of grandeur.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #325 - 01/02/18 at 00:19:08
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Stigma wrote on 01/01/18 at 23:48:50:
But what I really want to know about Lombardy (about his final book Understanding Chess: My System, My Games, My Life, really) is whether there actually is a system there?


Has there ever been?  I don't personally think that Nimzovich had one, or Berliner, or anyone else who claims to have developed one.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #324 - 01/01/18 at 23:48:50
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proustiskeen wrote on 01/01/18 at 21:03:50:
My January 2018 'review' of Bill Lombardy's books.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/01/01/lombardy-in-memoriam/

Sounds like a tragic end indeed.

But what I really want to know about Lombardy (about his final book Understanding Chess: My System, My Games, My Life, really) is whether there actually is a system there? A grand method of training, or at least some innovative training techniques or eye-opening concepts?

I suppose it's likely that any brilliant advances made by Lombardy have been rediscovered by others after so many years.

P.S.: He even looks angry in the cover photo!
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #323 - 01/01/18 at 21:03:50
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My January 2018 'review' of Bill Lombardy's books.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2018/01/01/lombardy-in-memoriam/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #322 - 12/04/17 at 14:50:35
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My December 2017 review of Alburt & Crumiller's _Carlsen vs Karjakin: World Chess Championship, New York 2016._

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/12/04/analyzing-the-2016-world-chess...
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #321 - 11/04/17 at 02:26:17
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My November review of Alex Fishbein's _The Scotch Gambit: An Energetic and Aggressive System for White._

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/11/03/the-goldilocks-problem/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #320 - 10/11/17 at 20:13:38
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Yes I agree. About the best that black could do is trade b-pawn for a- and e-pawns. 38...b5 39.Ke2 b4 40.Kf3!? (or 40.Rc2 b3 41.axb3 Rxb3 and the e-pawn cannot be defended for long) 40...Bg7 41.Rbxb4 Rxa2 42.Kxe3.
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Here black's remaining pawns are too weak. But I would not resign yet. I still think this is a marginally better defense than was given in the PGN. It just doesn't hold.

Actually, switching on the computer, it thinks 38...b5 is a clear mistake and suggests 38...Ke5. After thinking for a while it suggests 38...Bc5!? 39.Rxh6+ Ke5. Which says something about 37...Bc5-f8. And says something else about my supposed endgame ability.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #319 - 10/10/17 at 16:36:36
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This position is clearly lost after 38... b5. 39. Ke2. White will use the h4-rook to attack and take the e3-pawn. b.e.: 39... Bg7 40. Rc2 Bf8 41. Rd4
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #318 - 10/10/17 at 16:05:33
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  1. An A player is good! Not that I am afraid of you, but sometimes your ideas will be better than mine. Once I was showing one of my pawn endgames to Pal Benko, and he made a natural move which I refuted by giving away a couple of pawns. He asked, "Are you trying to lose?" My answer was "no, I looked at this at home". He quickly agreed with my assessment, and the point is if you have done the work then your ideas are correct.
  2. When writing about thought processes, you need to use your own games. Or if you are a coach, you might use a student's games. Otherwise, how would you know what the thinking was?
  3. Your analysis looks good. But in the line, 33.Rc2 Bxc3 34.Rd1 Kxe6 35.Kf1 Bb4 36.Rd4 Bc5 37.Rh4 Bf8 38.Rb2
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    I think black can improve with 38...b5. Black doesn't even have to hurry with pushing on to b4. I'm not saying that black is holding, but R+B can put up stiff resistance vs 2R.

  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #317 - 10/10/17 at 14:43:47
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an ordinary chessplayer wrote on 10/09/17 at 19:06:31:
@proustikeen - In your first diagram, 33.Rc2 Bxc3 needs analysis. 34.Rac1 Bd2 35.Rb1 b5 36.Kf1 b4 and black might hold. Or 34.Rb1 Bd4 35.Kg2 Kxe6 36.Kf3 and white is better but is it a win for sure?

I wasn't so sure about 33.Rc2 and was looking at 33.Kf1!?. If 33...Rxc3 white can trade rooks, yes? And if 33...Bxc3 at a minimum white has 34.Rab1 Bd4 35.Rc2 transposing to 33.Rc2. So 33.Kf1 seems no worse than 33.Rc2.

Also 33.Kg2 is not totally ridiculous. Or maybe it is....

It's a good position for your illustration, that's for sure!


Thanks for taking a look at the game. I was a little hesitant to use one of my own games in the review, being a mere A player, but as you say, it does work in context.

I briefly 33...Bxc3 in the game file that was embedded in the review. Basically I thought White was very close to winning, if not fully so, after 34.Rd1. I took a deeper look after your post and after 34...Ke6 35.Kf1 Bb4! it's not an easy win but in a practical game I would think Black just has too many weaknesses to hold out forever. The f- or h-pawn will fall.

Pgn attached if you're interested!
  

game897603812.pgn ( 2 KB | 105 Downloads )
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #316 - 10/10/17 at 11:35:03
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GabrielGale wrote on 10/09/17 at 08:37:37:
@Seeley, for a more detailed response (from QC's Blog) dated September 5th, 2016:
[...]

Thanks for posting this!

An aside: Does anyone know if the differences between the 1st and 2nd edition of Attacking Manual 1 are large enough to justify an "upgrade"? I have AM1 and AM2, though unfortunately the first edition of the former, which apparently has some flaws. Haven't started studying them yet.

Aside #2: The multi-author Grandmaster vs Amateur is a seriously underrated book. I have gained insights into what strong players do differently, both at the board and in training, just by browsing it. Several of the chapters are entertaining as well. QC are now offering this book as a free add-on with orders inside the EU, which probably means it hasn't sold that well. Sad!
« Last Edit: 10/10/17 at 14:57:10 by Stigma »  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #315 - 10/09/17 at 19:06:31
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@proustikeen - In your first diagram, 33.Rc2 Bxc3 needs analysis. 34.Rac1 Bd2 35.Rb1 b5 36.Kf1 b4 and black might hold. Or 34.Rb1 Bd4 35.Kg2 Kxe6 36.Kf3 and white is better but is it a win for sure?

I wasn't so sure about 33.Rc2 and was looking at 33.Kf1!?. If 33...Rxc3 white can trade rooks, yes? And if 33...Bxc3 at a minimum white has 34.Rab1 Bd4 35.Rc2 transposing to 33.Rc2. So 33.Kf1 seems no worse than 33.Rc2.

Also 33.Kg2 is not totally ridiculous. Or maybe it is....

It's a good position for your illustration, that's for sure!
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #314 - 10/09/17 at 13:18:32
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No worries. I had it cut and pasted into a pdf. Like you, I dream, look at the list, and wish I can do it and dream yet more. I am still dreaming. Grin
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #313 - 10/09/17 at 09:49:53
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Thanks for taking the time to search that out for me, GabrielGale. I wish I had both the time and the level of commitment necessary  to apply myself to the task as Aagaard suggests! Nevertheless, I do buy and read his books from time to time, and this is extremely helpful in putting them all into context.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #312 - 10/09/17 at 08:37:37
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@Seeley, for a more detailed response (from QC's Blog) dated September 5th, 2016:

Quote:
First off, Inside the Chess Mind and Grandmaster vs. Amateur can be read for fun and totally out of sequence. The same goes to some extent for Excelling at Chess, which is mainly meant to inspire.
Excelling at Chess Calculation is the place I would start. Read it carefully. The exercises are not that great; I could skip them.
Then move on to Calculation. The chapters are created with more and more difficult exercises. Once you get stuck; go to the next chapter. The attitude in solving is important. Do it like it is important!
Once you are well into Calculation, you can start working on Positional Play as well. Work on them side by side. It does not matter which one you do most of, but do some of each. Calculation is later replaced by Practical Chess Defence and Positional Play by Strategic Play. Of all of these books, Calculation and Positional Play are the most important to really understand well.
You can read Attacking Manual 1 and 2 when your solving is getting steady. (If you do an hour a day, you will see rapid progress. Everyone who works with these books seriously have made big progress; including in India). Attacking Manual 1 works well together with Attack and Defence. Read AM1 and get A&D; but first go through the other books. You can always read Attacking Manual 1 more than once. Actually, I strongly recommend it.
Excelling at Technical Chess can be read later; it works well Endgame Play, which is also not on your list.
And please read Thinking Inside the Box when it comes out. It will tie all of the books together.
If you go through all of these books in the way I describe, you will have more effective training than most young chess players in the World. It is by no means easy and it requires a lot of effort.
[......][
I also strongly recommend reading my two books written together with Boris Gelfand and published under his name. Also, if you go to our blog, you will find some videos I made together with Boris at the end of July this year. One of them shows how we created the books, the two others are Q&A.

I should add to this that the Quality Chess Puzzle Book easily fits into the Grandmaster Preparation series. The exercises were collected and analysed by me and the book finished by John, so that the tone is his, but the structure and ideas are mine and the direction something John and I have always worked together on.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #311 - 10/08/17 at 21:42:01
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Stigma wrote on 10/08/17 at 21:32:52:
I believe Aagaard has stated that it's best to start with either Calculation or Positional Play if you're going to read all the first five Grandmaster Preparation books. While the final one, Thinking Inside the Box, stands on its own and can be read at any point.

Thanks, Stigma, that's useful to know.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #310 - 10/08/17 at 21:32:52
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I believe Aagaard has stated that it's best to start with either Calculation or Positional Play if you're going to read all the first five Grandmaster Preparation books. While the final one, Thinking Inside the Box, stands on its own and can be read at any point.

When I get around to this series, I'm planning to start with those three in some order (and maybe Calculation first of all since it's the only one I already own).

proustiskeen wrote on 10/08/17 at 19:02:12:
Hopefully coming soon!

Looking forward to it! But take your time. I value your reviews and articles for their quality, that's a lot more important than cranking them out rapidly. Smiley
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #309 - 10/08/17 at 20:30:33
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proustiskeen wrote on 10/08/17 at 02:29:49:
My October review of Jacob Aagaard's _Grandmaster Preparation: Thinking Inside the Box._

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/10/07/making-better-decisions/

Thanks for that review: I found it as thoughtful and informative as usual. You point out that this is the "sixth and final volume in the Grandmaster Preparation series". Is this a book that can usefully be read on its own, or would you consider it advisable to read the preceding five volumes in the series first? Some years ago, I read some but not all of the titles in Aagaard's "Excelling at..." series and felt that each one stood on its own perfectly well. Is the same true here, in your opinion?
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #308 - 10/08/17 at 19:02:12
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Hopefully coming soon!
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #307 - 10/08/17 at 04:50:40
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proustiskeen wrote on 03/30/17 at 22:09:40:
Part II of my first installment of "Chess Tech University" - how to analyze your games using chess technology!

https://new.uschess.org/news/chess-tech-university-philosophy-game-analysis-part...

Was this series ever continued past part 2, and is it available anywhere?

I really enjoyed your perspective on Dvoretsky's training philosophy, especially the similarities between his and Ericsson's thoughts on learning and practice.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #306 - 10/08/17 at 02:29:49
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My October review of Jacob Aagaard's _Grandmaster Preparation: Thinking Inside the Box._

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/10/07/making-better-decisions/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #305 - 09/04/17 at 20:04:15
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Yeah, I didn't post it until August. Smiley
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #304 - 09/04/17 at 19:46:10
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Just a random sidenote: There is no "July 2017" in the Archive sidebar on the right; instead the July 2017 review "Bisguier’s Books (and beyond)" is part of the August 2017 chapter
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #303 - 09/04/17 at 19:17:58
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A review of recent King's Indian books, including those by Kotronias, Bologan, and Pavlovic.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/09/04/no-kidding-new-kid-books/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #302 - 08/11/17 at 22:46:11
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proustiskeen wrote on 08/11/17 at 02:34:09:
I think you meant to say "I was wrong."

Assuming that's so, apology accepted.


Yes, I was quite wrong. Thanks for accepting my apology.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #301 - 08/11/17 at 02:34:09
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I think you meant to say "I was wrong."

Assuming that's so, apology accepted.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #300 - 08/10/17 at 22:23:48
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Sorry, my prior post was a little too cynical. I was not that familiar with the blog, so I was just making more of a philosophical statement. It was not called for, so I sincerely apologize.
  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #299 - 08/09/17 at 14:27:12
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Thanks, Rene. Never will I speak poorly of dualism again. (Although I do know a well-known professor who tries to make Descartes a monist based on one line in the Principles! I think it's half in jest... but only half.)
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #298 - 08/09/17 at 03:26:42
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Geez. This is Hartmann's thread. What ever are you doing? Warning him? Saying there are grounds for doubts, then denying those grounds apply (but why shouldn't they?)

We've known him for years here, and there is not the slightest indication that he is anything but thoughtful and honest. Before writing something so insolent, look at the archives: Hartmann has written plenty of harsh reviews; one thing they never contain, however, is innuendo.
« Last Edit: 08/09/17 at 23:52:32 by ReneDescartes »  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #297 - 08/09/17 at 03:15:54
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US Chess doesn't sell books. They have an outsourced book vendor, but the vendor pays a set amount for the contract and US Chess receives nothing beyond the contracted amount.

In other words, no conflict. Not that you were accusing me of such, of course.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #296 - 08/09/17 at 03:07:20
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More book reviews are welcome, but there is somewhat of a problem when books are reviewed in a publication run by an entity that hopes to sell more of these very same books.

The possibility of such a conflict of interest detracts from the quality and perhaps even the integrity of the reviews.
A general statement, not necessarily applicable to this blog. I would hope.

  

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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #295 - 08/09/17 at 02:32:47
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Playing a bit of catchup, here are the last two reviews from the July and August issues of Chess Life. I cover Bisguier's books in July and recent training books (Edouard, Kalinin, and Moskalenko) in August.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/08/08/bisguiers-books-and-beyond/

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/08/08/trend-hopping/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #294 - 06/01/17 at 14:58:58
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My June 2017 review of Bonin & Keener's _Active Pieces._

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/06/01/doing-jay-justice/
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #293 - 05/07/17 at 03:08:25
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My May 2017 review of a number of books (and databases) that cover 1.e4 e5 from the Black side.

https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/05/06/playing-1-e4-e5-with-black/
  
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LeeRoth
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #292 - 04/04/17 at 18:38:16
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proustiskeen wrote on 04/04/17 at 15:58:31:
My April 2017 review of the English translation of Paul Keres' World Chess Championship 1948 from Chess Life. A small web-only bonus appears at the end of the review.


https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/04/04/keres-magnum-opus/


Good review.  I'm a big fan of tournament books.  Back in the day, the games to know were the ones played in the big tournaments and matches.  Today, the stem game could be some obscure correspondence game.  When I see that, I can't help but feel that chess has lost some of its charm. Sad
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #291 - 04/04/17 at 15:58:31
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My April 2017 review of the English translation of Paul Keres' World Chess Championship 1948 from Chess Life. A small web-only bonus appears at the end of the review.


https://chessbookreviews.wordpress.com/2017/04/04/keres-magnum-opus/
  
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proustiskeen
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #290 - 03/31/17 at 03:58:16
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I always have a picture of Samuel L. Jackson next to my computer for inspiration.
  
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Re: Chess Book Review blog
Reply #289 - 03/31/17 at 02:12:25
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Just love "MF says."  Shades of Snakes on a Plane.
  
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