Without a doubt by far the best Chess site on the net is
Edward Winter's 'Chess Notes.' (just type in 'Winter + Chess notes'
in any search engine and it will take you their.)
It has a collection of weird and wonderful games, studies
and puzzles. Articles on every aspect of Chess and is a
bottomless pit of Chess trivia.
(I only found out from 'Notes' the other day that Capablanca
was one of 11 children, 8 of which died in infancy.)
I've often surfed there and have seen an article or a game
that I have taken and chewed into something for my site.
Winter's writing style is of the no nonsense brand.
One gets the clear impression he does not suffer fools.
Yet sometimes he can slip into humorous mode and with
a few well chosen phrases has me giggling like... a fool.
He appears to save his best when reviewing books.
A Concept of Dramatic Genre and the Comedy of a New Type:
Chess, Literature and Film. by V. Ulea
Southern Illinois University Press. 2002.
(I've labeled Mr Winter's comments with EW.)
EW: The first words of the Preface (page xi) give fair warning of what is in store:
'This book is an attempt to approach dramatic genre from the point of view
of the degree of richness and strength of a character's potential.
My main goal is to establish a methodology for analyzing the potential
from a multidimensional perspective, using systems thinking.
The whole concept is an alternative to the Aristotelian plot-based
(externally motivated) approach, and it is applied to an analysis of
western and eastern European authors and also to contemporary American film.'
EW: We nonetheless soldiered on, even after being informed on page 8:
'To approach the problem of evaluation of the whole from the point
of view of the general systems phenomenon, one must distinguish between
the evaluation of an aggregate and that of a system when approaching a unity.'
EW: At that early stage, still wanting to be a good sport,
we were prepared to distinguish between anything V. Ulea wanted,
provided that discussion of chess was imminent. Our reward came on page 14:
'Now that the general concept of dramatic genre has been presented,
let us discuss in detail the ways of measuring protagonists' potential,
using a multidimensional approach and a chess model.'
Mr Winter them goes gives more examples of the above garbage.
jumping in every now and then with turns like....
EW: Overleaf a further pounding awaited us:
EW: Pausing only to wonder whether any writer would use the term
'in actuality' with a straight face, we pressed ahead, hoping for
enlightenment in that chapter's concluding 'Summary'.
EW: With that off her chest, V. Ulea accorded the game a well-earned
rest in the wings, but it resumed centre-stage on page 85:
EW: Nobly resisting any temptation to turn such pages unread and
thereby miss a nugget, on we plodded until finding that pages 144-145
discussed the relative value of the chess pieces in incomparable fashion:
EW:That second 'in actuality' somehow made our perseverance feel
worthwhile, and a passage on the next page showed that the author,
if no-one else, was unflagging:
EW: By now V. Ulea was running short of chessic insights, although
there was, of course, no let-up in the verbiage. We nonetheless kept
with her to the bitter end, valiantly casting aside worries about the
conditionality and increasingly heavy positional parameters of our eyelids,
as well as, in actuality, another equivalently situation-specific valuation
of a semi-unconditional physical nature: our brain hurt.
Of course if you want to see Mr Winter in full flight.
Find anything he reviews written by Eric Schiller. Tears will flow...
I will break up the text with this picture from Chess Notes.
It's a badge that was made especially for the 1975 Fischer-Karpov match.
Mr Winter carries a torch for correctness in Chess.
Quite rightly so. Our game is splattered with myths,
inaccuracies and down right gaffs. (guilty on all 3 charges).
For at least 3 decades he has tried to expunge the false
and replace it with fact. How he must have despaired when
things like the following fell into his lap.
America's Chess Heritage by W. Korn (New York, 1978):
Walter's notes in the preface...
'While many opinions in this book might be my own responsibility,
I have tried my utmost to verify and review the facts, statements,
documents, and relevant writings as referred to; to rectify erroneous beliefs;
explode myths; and provide a complete record of any essential American national chess data.'
As early as page 4 the book refers to 'William Staunton',
page 7, 1875 instead of 1857 as the year of the New York tournament won by Morphy.
I found these next two problems on Chess Notes.
How To Get More Out Of Chess by F. Reinfeld (New York, 1957):
White to play and win by Selesniev 1935.
1.Rc8+ Kxc8 2.b7+ Kb8 3.d5 Kc7
Reinfeld now states:
'He must play 3...Kc7, allowing 4 bxa8(Q) and wins'
4.bxa8Q is stalemate.
What should he take instead of a Queen and win?
and this is a pure joy when you finally figure it out.
White to play and mate. Moving only his Bishops!
The White King and pawns are not allowed to move.
I could not find the solution in Chess Notes
so I dug in and finally figured it out.
I shall not deny you the pleasure you will
get when you see the idea. Solution next C.C.
Right a game. This is from the recent Glenrothes
Tournament between P. Selby and J. Duncan.
A gigantic struggle that must have taken it's toll
on both players.
Benko's are always good fun - few draws.
We are treated to an entertaining
middle game that slips into a won White ending.
(33 Na7 wins). White comes up with a faulty
trick (41.Rc5) and his win evaporated.
He lost in the end but had a clear draw when this
position was reached...
72 h5 gxh5 and White checks forever on g2 & g1
if the King strays onto the 3rd rank then Rg3
will force off the Rooks and Black is left
with wretched Rook pawns....Draw.
[Click here to replay the game]
P. Selby vs. John Duncan
1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 c5 3.d5 b5 4.cxb5 a6 5.bxa6 Bxa6 6.Nc3 g6 7.g3 Bg7 8.Bg2 d6 9.Nf3 0-0 10.0-0 Nbd7 11.Re1 Qb6 12.Bh3 c4 13.Qc2 Nc5 14.Be3 Qa5 15.Bxc5 Qxc5 16.e4 Rab8 17.Rad1 Bc8 18.Bxc8 Rfxc8 19.h3 Nd7 20.a4 Rb3 21.Rb1 Rcb8 22.Nd2 Ne5 23.Re3 R3b4 24.Nb5 Ra8 25.b3 Rc8 26.bxc4 Nxc4 27.Nxc4 Qxc4 28.Qxc4 Rxb1+ 29.Qf1 Rcc1 30.Qxc1 Rxc1+ 31.Kg2 Ra1 32.Ra3 Rb1 33.Nc3 Rb4 34.a5 Bxc3 35.Rxc3 Ra4 36.Rc8+ Kg7 37.Rc7 Kf6 38.e5+ dxe5 39.Rc6+ Kf5 40.a6 e4 41.Rc5 Rxa6 42.d6+ Ke6 43.dxe7 Kxe7 44.Re5+ Re6 45.Ra5 Kf6 46.h4 Re5 47.Ra6+ Kf5 48.Ra7 Ke6 49.Ra2 Kd5 50.Ra7 Rf5 51.Ra5+ Kd4 52.Ra4+ Kd3 53.Ra3+ Kc2 54.Re3 Re5 55.Re2+ Kd3 56.Re3+ Kd4 57.Re2 e3 58.fxe3+ Rxe3 59.Rd2+ Ke4 60.Rf2 f5 61.Rf4+ Kd3 62.Rf1 Re2+ 63.Kh3 Re3 64.Ra1 Ke2 65.Ra4 Kf2 66.Ra2+ Kf3 67.Rg2 f4 68.gxf4 Kxf4+ 69.Kh2 Kf3 70.Rg3+ Kf2 71.Rg2+ Ke1 72.Rg1+ Kd2 73.Rg2+ Re2 74.Rxe2+ Kxe2 75.Kg3 h5 76.Kg2 Ke3 77.Kg3 Ke4 78.Kg2 Kf4 79.Kh3 Kf3 0-1