We know from chess openings like the Grunfeld Defense (1.d4 Nf6 2.c4 g6 3.Nc3 d5) that Black may control the center with pieces instead of pawns. But what about the Grunfeld’s poor cousin, 1.d4 d5 2.c4 g6, clearly a member of this hypermodern family? The first issue of Kamikaze Times (November, 2002) called this line the “Alekhine Defense” against the Queen’s Gambit. Alekhine did play this opening, but the editor correctly notes that Blackburne takes precedence. Unusual and seldom seen, there is not much theory to learn nor many games to consult; those who enjoy offbeat chess openings may investigate further. First we have Blackburne at work:
Check out Kevin Butler’s new chess video introduction to the Steinitz Gambit, covering the important ideas underlying this wild chess opening! After 1.e4 e5 2.Nc3 Nc6 3.f4 exf4 4.d4 Qh4+ 5.Ke2 the White King is perfectly comfortable behind his strong central pawns, and the monarch even plans on better placement in case of any endgame. Very bold! Kevin’s video explains what’s going on, and shows how you can use the fighting King in your chess openings.
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A group of children in southwest Philadelphia are using chess to stay positive and avoid violence in their city. Will any of them be the next chess prodigies?
Check out this CNN video story where everyone wins:
We just found this notable blog entry by chess author Lubomir Kavalek at the Huffington Post. He talks straightforward about plagiarism in the chess world, naming names – an excellent article which calls to mind some observations from our own experience.
In the role of publisher, ChessCentral has produced many fine print books and e-books found in our catalog. Unfortunately, each passing year exposes more web sites that choose to sell, share or give away our copyright protected property, our books and articles. Recently we found an eBay seller with over 100 chess books from many publishers, all scanned and placed on CD and ready to ship. When contacted he claimed some “obvious right” based on his work of scanning. A generous interpretation of the law!
Other portals frequently offer chess book downloads that are copy protected. To the credit of Chess.com, for example, once an infraction is brought to their attention they remove it immediately from the site. But many outlaw domains remain silent and await enforcement. Most chess book publishers could keep a cadre of copyright lawyers busy.
Another area often pirated is chess software. In fact, many “warez” sites frequently appear in searches for popular software products before listings from legimate chess shops. We’ve even seen Google ads hawking illegally obtained chess software. If weeks of programming must be added to protect software from theft, the price goes up and honest consumers pay.
Mr. Kavalek suggests that most victims of piracy don’t talk about it, and so the author has spoken out for them. The intellectual pirate is a thief who forces everyone to suffer equally at the cash register.
Get ready, on Sunday, August 12 you will have a chance to play against World Champion Viswanathan Anand. Anyone with an Internet connection can partake in this duel between individual genius and “the wisdom of crowd. You can be part of a team of chess players from around the globe willing to pit their skills against the world’s number one player.
Many people possessed of a creative bent, aspiring craftsmen, have learned how to make chess pieces and chess sets. The artist has a wide choice of medium, some preferring ceramic and resins while others like metal working. Even exotic materials such as bone and rock can be fashioned into beautiful and decorative chess pieces.
Naturally the most popular chess sets are made of wood. Today the majority of chess pieces are mass produced in factories using expensive wood turning equipment, modern tools far beyond the reach of most woodworkers. But really all that is needed to make your own chess set is wood and a sharp knife, right? There is much to be said for primitive methods; forget about fancy electric tools!
At ChessCentral we encourage craftsmanship. If you’d like to make a fine wooden chess set from scratch we recommend the Moroccan Bow Lathe – a must for any basic tool kit. Check out the following amazing chess video to learn more about this important device for making chess pieces: