18 March 2012

Training Log

It was a productive week! On Monday I started to become serious about working on my flash card project.
3. Complete my Pawn Endgame flash card project.
Two years ago, I created cards that contain all the blue diagrams of the first chapter in Mark Dvoretsky, Dvoretsky's Endgame Manual. I review these cards regularly--they contain no answers--with the intention of being able to know in an instant when looking at each how the position should be played. See the last paragraph of "GM-RAM: Essential Knowledge."
See "New Year's Resolutions"
I selected one card at random, and it was sufficient to keep me busy for over an hour. First I set up the position on a chess board. Then, without moving any pieces I recorded observations and variations in a notebook. Finding a critical position that required more thought, I moved the pieces to it and recorded more. There were a few false starts, but I thought that I had worked out the main lines. Without leaving the table, I set up the initial position in tChess Pro on the iPad and played against the computer at full strength (est. Elo 2500). Success. I tried against a stronger engine on the iPad: Shredder (est. Elo 2600) with more success. Then, I set up the position on my notebook computer and played against Rybka 4. I wrote about the exercise in "Opposition and Outflanking."

Many more hours were spent with this position through the course of the week that do not count as part of my training. I used the position in teaching some of the stronger players that I coach, and I spent time researching the history of the composition (see "Algebraic Notation: The Language of Chess").

Tactics Exercises

I managed to spend more than one half hour with Lev Alburt, Chess Training Pocket Book II, working through problems that I had visited some months ago. This book is frustrating because I think that I should do better at finding the correct answers. I failed on one problem in exactly the same way that I had before: it is Black to move, and my analysis focused on how White should pursue the attack. That's a useful prerequisite for finding Black's necessary defense, but I never looked at Black's initial move.

I did succeed in working out the key idea and main lines in this problem.

White to move
1r6/2p5/1bRp4/3Pp1pk/1R2Nr1p/2PK1P1P/6P1/8 w - - 0 1

I also solved far more than fifty total problems. Current Shredder tally shows 51 problems in the past week:
1382 puzzles: 10858/13820 points 78%
last 10 puzzles: 87/100 87%
In  addition, I solved the first 30 exercises that are part of the Chess-wise iPad app. It comes with 300 exercises. No timer, no points. Realistic positions that might occur in play. Add the dozen I worked on in Alburt's text, and that's more than 90 problems the past week.

No comments:

Post a Comment