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Thinking and Chess


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#1 darkshine

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Posted 17 June 2012 - 05:27 PM

I don’t know how everyone else plays chess but I’ve noticed there are great similarities between how I think when I’m playing chess and how I think in general when having certain conversations.

I don’t think that I am a great chess player, but I often throw people by my unusual and apparently random strategies, I often look like I’ll win because I start well, I set up defence well. However, I have the unfortunate inability to finish and win as I struggle to see what to do to finish and that is sometimes like a conversation... I feel I have more moves to make and the other person checkmates me.

The last game of actual chess I played I had a Queen, 2 Bishops, a Knight, a Castle and 3 or 4 pawns. The other player had a couple of pawns and their King – it took me about 30 moves to win!!! (I was informed that it should have taken about 5).

Anyway… at the beginning of a conversation or game of chess I look at each piece and work out where it can go, what could happen next, where I might go, what my strategy will be. and as the pieces move or the conversation starts going I look at other things, what can take what piece, what it can take later, where the other player might go according to where I go, and what possibilities that opens up – and with each move the possibilities change, they shift and alter, and I try to work out the next 2 or 3 following moves that could be made by me or them for every single piece and the corresponding alternatives for each.

Once a certain amount of pieces are out, this process is looked at for every piece so it gets pretty complicated as the options increase.

So if that pawn can go there, the other person has x number of possible moves which means I have x number of possible moves and so on, looking at anything nearby, or anything that could be nearby in a move or two, and how everything can alter a great deal in that short amount of time.
As complicated as it sounds it doesn’t really take that long to do – with chess....

This is like a conversation in some ways though, there are so many factors, options, choices, meanings and consequences… Like chess I quite often go wrong. Like chess there are so many quick choices to make in a really short time. Except I can’t see the pieces in a conversation and I don’t always know what the end goal is. Even when I have an end goal (like winning at chess) or discussing a certain issue, I get lost along the way because people react and respond in unpredictable ways, that confuse me until I don’t even know what I was trying to say any more, and I don’t even know why I say the things I do.

Then sometimes a person says things that are boring or interesting and again that can change the route that is taken, and there’s things I want to say but conversations don’t work like chess, you don’t always get one turn each, and there’s whole other layers of meaning and social etiquette to know and abide by and then there’s feelings and opinions and ideas that all add to the mix.

And there are the types of real life conversations that I just really don’t like – and they feel very much like playing speed chess, we each make our moves trying to get to the stalemate before ending that conversation. Like general chatting with an acquaintance or shop keeper or something... or someone you get introduced to – why can I write the script for what so many people say in those situations?

And worse, when stalemate is reached rather than having a clear beginning and end point, which is really frustrating when you actually have things to say!

In that way chess is easier - well to start with anyway - it's easy to sit there and see all the moves because the pieces are right there on the board and they all have their own functions, their own rules, I know where each piece can go because I can see it, I can work out where they could go and what they could do next because I can look at the board and see where those possibilities lie - and that's why I'm good to start with - because I can see all that - I can make moves that make people surprised that I've done it - they groan like someone does at scrabble when they had a really good word but someone else used the space first - and I laugh because I can do that and I'm just playing around - and they get frustrated because I can have every single piece guarded by 2 pieces very quickly - but as the pieces dwindle I fail - I cannot see how to win - I can watch every piece there is, but trying to get that king is like an impossible act - I can watch 32 pieces and knock most of them off - but I can't watch the kings and that is why I lose.

Does this make sense to anyone?

There is an exception - that is majorly in-depth conversations and with those I can usually progress though them with far less trouble because I've got something to sink my teeth into, like solving a problem or developing thoughts on a subject or event or thing or whatever...

#2 robert7111a

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Posted 17 June 2012 - 07:35 PM

I love chess and used to be really good at it years ago when I was at school and ran a chess club. But I don't know if it's just cos I'm out of practice or my brain doesn't work the way it should, I seem to have lost the plot.

Yes, I start well with a clear goal but seem to lose it along the way as I make stupid moves. It's like I start in quite a confident manner but get lost as the game gets more complicated. I think it must be the loss of neurones as one gets older - those connections in the brain become fewer. I see chess a bit like reading, I understand all the pieces and how they move in the same way as I understand letters and can read the words on a page. But I lose my way, lose strategy and literally lose the plot in the same way as I can't understand actually what I'm reading - i.e. the plot of the book

Playing speed chess - well, as it doesn't give you time to think (or rehearse in one's mind), it is easy to make wrong moves - in the same way as saying the wrong thing in a conversation

Interesting topic Darkshine...

#3 darkshine

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Posted 17 June 2012 - 08:59 PM

I'm not much worse at speed chess than regular chess - because playing it normally I get ultra bored waiting for the other person to make their move - I've already worked out what I need to work out in the time they were thinking - it might be a reason why people don't like playing chess with me cuz I sit there going "so move" every couple of minutes and then as soon as they make their move I make mine straight away - it probably doesn't feel like they get a break to think - I wonder if this is what goes on with certain conversations too - that I'm too quick sometimes and people don't have time to think :blink: weird thought :huh:

So you don't fancy a game then? :lol:

Edited by darkshine, 17 June 2012 - 08:59 PM.


#4 A-S warrior

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 12:41 AM

life is a bit like a game of chess, if you castle to early you look weak and you will be exposed to attack.

#5 darkshine

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 10:49 AM

I don't castle early in chess.... In fact I barely ever do it at all - it makes no difference to the spectacular fall apart at the end of my game :lol:

#6 robert7111a

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 01:05 PM

I'm always up for a game of chess with anyone (Darkshine...?) and although I may not be quick, I certainly do not take all day.

Castling does not always make sense as it puts your king in a vulnerable position at the edge of the board if your defence isn't sound.

When I was a kid (and in my chess club), we were always taught to castle early. But if your chums weren't around to defend you, then you were on your own...and at the mercy of your opponent.

I often enjoyed exchanging queens early... made the game more exciting as to who would queen a pawn first

#7 darkshine

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 04:23 PM

Yeah why not :lol: so I guess we have choices here.

1. You can teach me how to play using words (like queen to knight 4) which is a way I have never bothered learning - but that would require the tedium of having 2 boards set up and not messing up any moves... I'm not so confident I can do that

2. Find an online thing and do it that way

3. Or do I hop on a train one day and meet you in one of the nice parky type places :lol: (ignoring my agoraphobia - and our social anxiety lol) - but for this minute in time I want to pretend that I'm normal and could quite easily jump on a train and head to London for a game of chess, and that that would be a perfectly natural thing to do :)

I like messing with the queen - but I'm not dumb enough to tell you all my tactics!! Cuz if we do play chess you'll know my stuff beforehand and that would be an unfair advantage ;)

PS - even though I said what I said for 3 - I am the kinda person who would probably do something that random if I'm in a better place with issues and stuff - the question is: do you do random things like that too?

#8 robert7111a

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 06:55 PM

Well there's an offer! You might just have to PM me...!

#9 darkshine

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Posted 18 June 2012 - 07:15 PM

Maybe I will :D :lol:

#10 robert7111a

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 07:50 AM

Queen to knight 4 I think is "QK4"
Bishop takes knight "B X K"
Castle king's side "0-0" Queen's side "0-0-0"
Pawn to King 4 "PK4"

from memory...

Now look what you started Darkshine :lol: I'm going to have to find an old chess book from the attic (that's if I haven't thrown it away)

#11 darkshine

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Posted 19 June 2012 - 10:43 AM

Well the words make sense but the meaning is lost - I might have to spend some time looking online I think :)

#12 robert7111a

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 08:22 AM

Well I've just had a quick look and at some point in the last 30 years, the standard notation has changed to algebraic - which is double dutch to me! So for example what used to be "P-K4" (i.e. move Kings pawn 2 spaces) is now "e4" (i.e. the pawn letter is not noted anymore

Have fun...!! :lol:

#13 darkshine

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Posted 20 June 2012 - 11:13 PM

Yeeeees.... I'm going to have a look and see if it makes sense - but I generally learn quicker by watching and doing than by reading - why can't they just give each piece a number and each square a number and then it's simpler innit - like battle ships!

I found a "pen" pal cuz of the term "double dutch".

#14 robert7111a

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Posted 23 June 2012 - 08:04 AM

Join up with Yahoo!

Yahoo Chess has the numbers and letters on the board.

I challenge you to a game or two...:lol:

#15 darkshine

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Posted 23 June 2012 - 09:24 AM

You're gonna want to kick me - but yahoo annoys me due to the personal data it requires :lol:

I've found a site that does correspondence chess (meaning you get up to 15 days to make a move depending on setiing) as well as real-time chess - not sure if it's any good or not... fancy testing it out?

Two ways... I could send you a link... or you could PM me your email address and I can send you an invite? Ideally the invite way would be the better option as it would list us as friends straight away without the hassle of trying to find each other lol. We'd probably have to be online at the same time to set it up to begin with, so we'd have to arrange that (I'm still feeling rough a lot of the day so maybe have a look to have a go sometime next week?) :)

#16 robert7111a

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Posted 23 June 2012 - 06:38 PM

OK, I'll PM you with my email address...:)

#17 darkshine

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 07:54 PM

And the results of game number 1............


I lost :lol: good game Robert :thumbs: but I am also plotting my revenge for our rematch :devil: :lol:

#18 Mannify

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 08:51 PM

congrats, Robert

#19 A-S warrior

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Posted 10 July 2012 - 10:08 PM

i really want to get into chess, i have a very methodical thought pattern and could be really good at it, just need some tutoring.

#20 darkshine

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 12:35 AM

Do you know the moves the pieces can make?

#21 A-S warrior

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 01:39 AM

rooks go sideways, knights skip over squares, the queen is the ninja piece, the king is a sitting duck, bishop goes diagonanol, porns go a sqaure at a time, you can promote you porn once it makes it to the other side, and you can castle if you havent moved your king and rook. other than that im completley ignorant.

Edited by A-S warrior, 11 July 2012 - 04:06 AM.


#22 darkshine

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 11:15 AM

Ok, so that needs a little bit of work first lol

At the start, when all the pieces are set, the pawns can jump 2 squares forwards, it is the only time they can do this, each one can do it only once, and that's from their starting position. They can only ever take another piece diagonally forwards. The rest of the time they move one square forwards. And you are right about promoting if the reach the other side.

Rooks, or castles can move sideways or forwards and backwards so that's right.

You are right about the bishops too. The bishops have to be used cleverly cuz one is only on black squares and the other is only on white - used together they can be very useful - especially if another strong piece is used with them.

And the king and queen are good explanations too - you are also right about castling, that is the only time the king can move more than one square.

The queen is most people's favourite piece because it can move in any direction, it's a strong piece because of that.

I like the knights - they are funny pieces in the way they move and are the only piece that can jump over other pieces - do you understand how they move? Cuz it's like in "L" shapes - in a clear space and with every possible move open a knight can have many moves. And because of the way they move they can be used in various ways. When playing people who only play chess for fun, the knight is one of the pieces that people seem to forget about.

The thing about chess is that it's just like a battle, you have your armies and you have to use them in the right way to win. It's all about strategy and stuff. Each member of the army has a different skill and if you can make that work, you win

(yeah this is my layman's terms of chess - I know there's a much more complicated way lol)

Does all that make sense/confirm what you know already?

If so the next thing to do is practice so you start thinking about how it all works - there's a website me and Robert are using, if you want you can PM your email address and I'll send you an invite for it.

#23 robert7111a

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Posted 11 July 2012 - 05:34 PM

Pawns can also capture another pawn en passant if the opponents pawn moves towards your pawn that you haven't yet moved two spaces at the start. For me, the queen is not the most powerful piece and I don't like bringing her out too early

The main objective in chess is to capture your opponent's king whilst protecting your own king from capture.

Darkshine and I have just finished our first game. Would be nice if you wanted to join us.

You can also join Yahoo! where it has chess on its games site where you can "join" a table and watch - this will give you an idea of how the pieces move and capture one another. It's a great strategy game

#24 A-S warrior

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 11:28 PM

i,ll join, when i feel ready :ph34r: seroiusly though i will join, it wil be fun for you too see me lose

Edited by A-S warrior, 13 July 2012 - 11:28 PM.


#25 darkshine

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Posted 13 July 2012 - 11:48 PM

Think about it - if you don't feel like doing it now just mention it again when you do feel like it :)

#26 Mannify

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Posted 25 July 2012 - 08:22 PM

When do you two play again?

#27 darkshine

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Posted 25 July 2012 - 11:06 PM

When Robert has settled back into his routine and when I get a break from mine I guess :lol:

#28 robert7111a

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 12:36 PM

When Robert has settled back into his routine and when I get a break from mine I guess :lol:


Settling in slowly...should be back to normal early next week :o

#29 darkshine

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 01:20 PM

Take your time mate, I guessed you'd have to get things back in order and stuff - and I really need to work on my time management because in some respects I'm doing a lousy job of things :lol:

I'll see if I can get a grip by next week and we can pick things back up.

Did you have a good time away?

#30 robert7111a

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 01:54 PM

Sea, 32+ temperatures, lovely food, pools, and ...and...something else I shouldn't mention on here

Yes mate had a great holiday ta. Back to the grindstone....

Take your time...seriously no rush.

Looking forward to your revenge match (damn, can't post smilies on works PC...)

#31 Mannify

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 02:14 PM

Where'd you go? Sounds wonderful.

#32 robert7111a

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 02:34 PM

Where'd you go? Sounds wonderful.


Canary islands

#33 Mannify

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 02:38 PM

Awwwww! Lanzarote is one of our favorite places. We're besotted by Cesar Manrique and his architecture and sculptures. We haven't been for six years, but we just love it. http://www.google.co...iw=1024&bih=705 My son was only three when we last went six years ago, and he made us go around Cesar Manrique's house three times.

So glad you had a great time :)

Edited by Mannify, 26 July 2012 - 02:39 PM.


#34 darkshine

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 04:48 PM

Sea, 32+ temperatures, lovely food, pools, and ...and...something else I shouldn't mention on here

Yes mate had a great holiday ta. Back to the grindstone....

Take your time...seriously no rush.

Looking forward to your revenge match (damn, can't post smilies on works PC...)


So sea, sun, sand and sssssssssss :lol: :devil:

That's brilliant, I'm really glad you had a good time - sounds like you needed it too!!

I am planning my revenge very carefully - I am at a disadvantage (I know you are the better player) but that won't deter me...

Will let you know when I've got on top of things again - and we have that PM we started too - I'll keep you posted :D

#35 robert7111a

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 08:53 PM

Thanks Guys, but worst thing about going on holiday...is the going back to work bit... :crying:

Hey Darkshine...you just did a couple of dud moves which let you down. Bet you'll do better next time. Can't wait.... :P he he

Oh and the ssssssssssssss bit isn't anywhere near what you think :wink:

#36 darkshine

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 09:27 PM

:lol: I bet the ssssssss wasn't what I think :lol:

The move that really pissed me off was when I gave up my queen cuz I was in a rush to go out that day and knew I wouldn't be back before the timer ran out - I wasn't paying attention and just moved it - I have learnt my lesson on that one and it totally served me right for not looking properly before I made a move - having said that my plan was falling apart at that point anyway so I was still probably screwed :rolleyes:

#37 robert7111a

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Posted 26 July 2012 - 09:37 PM

We'll take longer between moves next time so got more time to think. :)

#38 darkshine

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 12:58 AM

I had 24 hours to think :lol: it was my time management that was at fault, and the fact I didn't think - however, because I have revision stuff, it would be good for longer intervals so that if one of us is busy for a day, we won't have to panic so much on time :)

#39 robert7111a

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 06:10 AM

:lol:

#40 darkshine

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Posted 27 July 2012 - 10:24 AM

What do you think of 3 day intervals? A week seems excessive.... And we both know that most of the time 3 days will be way too long - but at least it adds leeway if either of us are busy. :)




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