Author: Brendan J. Norman

Chess Endgame Strategy: Learn from Stockfish 7!

Today we’ll learn a lesson on chess endgame strategy from his highness, Stockfish 7. I know, I know… I’ve mentioned on this blog before that I’m not a fan of these 3000+ ELO engines (like Stockfish, Komodo and co) and that I prefer weaker, but more “human-like” engines. This is all true. But a lesson we learn in life is that even though we might not like somebody, we can still learn from them!  😆 Let’s Learn Chess Endgame Strategy from… Recently I was running an engine tournament on my laptop to research an opening line I am interested in...

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Chess Openings for White: The Ruy Lopez! (Part One)

If you listen to strong players discuss their chess games, one thing that’ll strike you (assuming you’re the perceptive type 😉 ) is the enormous amount of assumed knowledge. The discussion after a tournament game might go something like this: Guy 1: “What happened in your game?”  Guy 2: “Ahh… It was an Open Ruy Lopez Opening with Qe2/Rd1 and the guy did some weird shit with Qb8 which I’d never seen before. So… I just played natural moves and…” Huh? “Open Ruy Lopez”? What the hell is a “natural move”? That’s what’s called assumed knowledge 🙂 In this series...

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Chess Engine Challenge: Chess System Tal 2 (Game 2)

Black against Chess System Tal 2 was no walk in the park…   Game 1 was difficult enough although I managed to save that game from a worse position. In game 2 I actually had a better position at some point, but mis-timed my critical break and allowed Chess System Tal to take over. Chess Engine – Chess System Tal 2 vs Brendan J. Norman In the game I avoided by beloved Najdorf and instead played a Classical Sicilian, which is a little safer against an opponent of this calibre. 10…Qc7 allowed the computer to double my pawns for which...

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If Gary Kasparov Returned to Chess…

In the beginning, I wasn’t really a big fan of Gary Kasparov. His high-tech openings and amazingly deep combinations were miles above my level of understanding at that time, and I often had trouble figuring out just what the hell was going on in his games. Often when his opponent resigned, I didn’t even understand why. This is why in the beginning days of my chess development, I was at first attracted to the games of players from the mid 1800s like Paul Morphy and Adolf Anderssen. Those guys crushed their opponents (mostly weak players, to be honest) with dazzling...

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Chess Engine Challenge: Chess System Tal 2 (Game 1)

Many of you will remember back in March when I began a fantastic tournament with 15 of the leanest, meanest chess engines in existence. Many of you have also contacted me saying “Brendan, what happened to your awesome training tournament with the engines? 😥 “. Here is my response. My Windows 7 installation which held the awesome tournament was corrupted and I lost the data containing the tournament….NO!!!!  👿 Solution: What I’ve decided to do  (rather than hold a huge tournament with me and FIFTEEN other engines participating) is hold short “best of 3” challenge matches between myself and whatever engine...

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