Sunday, 1 December 2013

Getting Back

I have been setting up and familiarising myself with my new iPhone this month, and have not had much time for chess, but I have been able to resume my quest this week. I have finished my second pass through McDonald's Starting Out: Queen's Gambit Declined, and my third in a lifetime pass through Neishtadt's Test Your Tactical Ability.

I have also played a few more games against the Novag Citrine. When it is out of its opening book and there are no tactics within its search horizon, it tends to play aimlessly. When I fail to get a good position against the Citrine, I know that I have a problem, either with my understanding of the opening or with strategy in general. I have also found the iPad version of Stockfish useful for testing my openings.

I have made a start on Chessimo Strategy, as recommended by AoxomoxoA. This is proving to be both enjoyable and instructive. I am making a single pass through the problems, using the PC version of Chessimo. A single pass does not appear to be possible with the iPad version. I have already completed Strategy 01 and started on Strategy 02, having completed 250 problems so far. Mastering Strategy 01 is certainly much less demanding than mastering Endgames 01. My plan is to do two or more passes through all three strategy modules end to end. The repetition interval should be about three weeks at my current rate of progress, which looks sensible.

My next tactics exercise will be to revisit my file of simple Problems of the Day that gave me trouble (267 and rising). These problems are also on my PC. I have got all this wonderful Apple technology, but I am having to use my clunky old PC!


  1. Unit 51 of each module is "every single exercise" again. By selecting this unit you might use your iphone instead of your pc?
    Very sad that the programmer of Chessimo dont sell any new lessions!
    These Strategy-Modules are my favorite Modules but imo the amount of exercises is too low to make us (much) stronger

    It is worthid to think a while about these puzzles.
    They show pattern but dont explain them ( enough ).
    For example there is a white bishop at b3 and a black pawn at e6. ( 2 exercises i think ) The suggested maneuver is f2-f4-f5 to open the important diagonal for the bishop ( short castled king ! )
    Chessimos explanaition is always very ( too ) short.
    A important method to play against a bishop is, to move an protected pawn into its diagonal and these ( 2 ? ) examples show how to work againts this method.
    There are other patterns about bishop-activity. For example the manouver a3-a4 and then Bc1-a3 if there is no other interesting diagonal for that bishop.

    1. Thank you for that.

      When I press STRATEGIES on the iPad version, I get an advertising screen which has three well hidden buttons, all marked Unit. These turn out to be buttons for selecting the three included units. If I buy the Strategy modules, do I get buttons for selecting the units individually?

      I expect that you are right, in saying that there are not enough problems to have much benefit, but every little helps!

    2. I have the Chessimo Version for Iphone,Ipod,Ipad ( without "HD" ).
      Here i can select Module , Unit, and Exercisenumber via "Menu" after selecting Strategy.
      There is an other Version "Chessimo HD" just for Ipad. "Should" ( ! ? ) be the same:

      So cheap, i bought all lessions and i use them all from time to time.

      If you want more Space between your repetitions: you could use several modules simulatiously
      Like : Strategy 1 Unit1 then Strategy 2 Unit 1 then Strategy 3 Unit 1 then Strategy 1 Unit 2.. Chessimo does show which units have been learned
      ATM i do Strategy 3 and Endgame 2 this way and from time to time i do some Opening and commented Endgames in between

    3. I had not appreciated that there are two versions. I have loaded the HD version. I read a post on that said that modules bought for the iPad would not work on the iPhone and vice versa. Does Apple allow that? I have got an iPad 2 (not HD) so either version should work on the iPad. Perhaps purchases for the non-HD version will work on both machines.

      I have got a nasty suspicion that the PC version will die with my PC.

    4. I have downloaded the multi-device version. It is essentially the same as the HD version, but the board is much worse.

      Is the final unit of every module (not just strategy modules) a repetition of all the problems in that module?

    5. I have bought "1 Activation" of all the modules for the HD version. I can indeed choose which problems to tackle. I get an alert when the repetition starts in each unit, as for the PC version. Its a pity that the buttons for all the units are labeled "Unit." Numbers would have been nice, but the buttons are in rows of ten so that is not a real problem.