24 June 2012

A Blogging Milestone

Training Log

Chess Skills blog began late in 2007, less than two weeks after I started my history blog, Patriots and Peoples. Chess Skills immediately became the more active of the two. In 2008, I created 103 posts for Chess Skills; 61 for Patriots and Peoples. Both had fewer posts in subsequent years. Then, in mid-February earlier this year, I started a run of activity with posts nearly every day. For nearly eight weeks, Chess Skills had one new post per day (perhaps five days were skipped during this run). As a consequence of this increase in activity, today's training log (my usual Sunday morning post since 11 March) is post number 103 for 2012. Less than half-way through 2012, the total number of posts equals the total in the most active previous year--2008!

My endgame training this past week was limited to in-depth post-game analysis of a key position from online correspondence play. Computer analysis revealed something that my opponent and I had missed: drawing possibilities. A fair amount of time was invested this past week using the computer to aid my analysis of two games that finished. "Chess is Art: Imbalances" shows the whole of one of these games.

For tactics, I solved three problems in the Chess-wise Pro set while I was waiting for the Novocaine to take effect during dental work on Wednesday. I solved eleven from the 1000 problem set in the Shredder iPad app.

Shredder totals
After 1695 puzzles: 13374/17060 points 78%
In the last 10 puzzles: 76/100 76%

This past week was my Dragon Chess Camp. Nine youth spent fifteen hours playing chess, solving chess problems that I had assembled for them in a workbook, and following through discussion of great games from the past. I awoke far too early on Monday, the first day, and had a long Chess Tempo training session in which I demonstrated a miserable lack of skills. On Tuesday, I did much better. Over these two sessions, I worked 87 problems.

Chess Tempo totals
Problems Done: 2028 (Correct: 1087 Failed: 941)
Percentage correct: 53.6%
Average recent per problem time spent 89 seconds

My percentage correct dropped, as did my average time per problem. Average time per problem was affected by one problem that too me more than ten minutes early Monday morning as I was drifting in and out of sleep, doing training on the iPad in bed.

I attended the Spokane Chess Club weekly meeting on Thursday. FM Curt Collyer showed us three games from the National Open in Las Vegas. In the first three rounds, he drew GM Ray Robson, GM Alejandro Ramirez, and GM Ivan Ivanisevic. It was fun and instructive discussing these fighting draws with a former Spokane youth, now in his late-20s and living in Seattle.

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