Announcement

Collapse

Forum Rules

Forum rules

(1) Posts are to be made in the relevant forum. Users are asked to read the forum descriptions before posting.
(2) Off topic posts are limited to active members who have actually posted on-topic in one of the chess-oriented sections in the past. Any user whose first post does not relate to chess will be banned permanently. Posts in the Introduction section do not count.
(3) Members should post in a way that is respectful of other users. Be tolerant at any time. Flaming or abusing users in any way will not be tolerated.
(4) Discussions on political and religious topics are not allowed. Posts containing elements thereof will be redacted or deleted and a temporary or permanent ban may be placed upon the user.
Discussions on politics in chess organisations and the way politics affect chess are allowed.
(4a) Drug use references are not allowed and discussions on drugs are not allowed.
(5) Members are asked to not act as "back seat moderators". If members have something to report they are welcome to bring it to the attention of moderator either by a PM or in this thread: http://www.chessforums.org/forum-new...moderator.html
(6) If you wish to report a PM please forward the PM to a moderator and leave a post here: http://www.chessforums.org/forum-new...moderator.html. Don't hesitate to report a PM if you believe it violates the forum rules, even if someone else has already reported a (similar) PM by the same user; having more reports makes it easier for the moderators to take action.
(7) These rules apply to forum posts as well as private messages (PMs).
(8) Members should post in a way which is consistent with "normal writing". That is users should not post excessive numbers of emoticons (smilies), large, small or coloured text, etc. Similarly users should not SHOUT or use excessive punctuation (e.g. ! and ?) in topic titles or posts.
(9) Members should use an appropriate, descriptive title when posting a new topic. Examples of bad titles include; "Help me!", "I'm stuck!", "I've got an error!", etc. Examples of good titles include; "New Game: Perseus - SomeOtherPlayer", "Two Knights Defense: Fritz Variation and sidelines", etc.
(10) Spam is not tolerated here under any circumstance.
(11) Continuously linking your own website to promote it is not allowed. You may use your signature (which will come up beneath all your posts) for this purpose.
(12) Members should refrain from posting without adding to the discussion. Posting just to increase postcount is not allowed.
(13) Combine your comments into one post rather than making many consecutive posts to a thread within a short period of time. This can be done by clicking the 'edit' button next to your post.
If your last post, which is the last in the thread, is very old you may use the following trick to make sure it's bumped up to the new posts. Click on the 'edit' button of your last post. Copy the content of the post. Click delete and delete your last post. Paste the content of the now-deleted post in a new post, add what you will and click 'submit reply'.
(13a) You are not allowed to make consecutive posts. If you post more than once without a reply from another user, all posts after the first will be deleted.
(13b) Exceptions may be made for specific types of threads.
(14) Warez are intellectual property (software/music/movies/tv-series/tv-shows/etc) either through download, serial, or crack in a manner that breaks its copyright and/or license. You are not allowed to give/link to/ask for/advocate/provide information for obtaining and the use of warez.
Bittorrent links are not allowed.
(14a) The following international treaties apply:
-Berne Convention for the Protection of Literary and Artistic Works (Berne Convention) (Berne, 1886)
-Universal Copyright Convention (UCC) (Geneva, 1952)
-Agreement on Trade-Related Aspects of Intellectual Property Rights (TRIPS) (Marrakesh, 1994)
-World Intellectual Property Organization Copyright Treaty (WIPO Copyright Treaty) (Geneva, 1996)
(15) Books published before 1920 are considered free of copyright and e-books thereof are not warez. Books published after 1920 with permission from the author are considered free of copyright and e-books thereof are not warez provided it can within reason be established that permission has been given. All other books are considered copyrighted and e-books thereof are considered warez.
(16) Usernames that contain obscene or vulgar language or denigrate individuals and/or organisations are not allowed.
(17) Users may only delete their own posts on the grounds that they constitute a severe breach of these rules. Even when this is the case, the editing of the post to effect repairs must at all times be considered first.
The emptying of posts (substituting the content by non-content) is explicitely considered a breach of this rule.
Deletion of whole batches of posts harms thread continuity and the forum as a whole and the Moderation team will take action; in the most extreme case an account may be permanently banned to preserve the posted.
(18) Administrators (Admins) and Moderators (Mods) reserve the right to edit or remove any post at any time. The determination of what is construed as indecent, vulgar, spam, etc. is up to them and not to forum members.
(19) Aforementioned Admins and Mods reserve the right to edit this list of rules at anytime.
See more
See less

Hard-Push/Soft-Push: Are Things As They Seem?

Collapse
X
  • Filter
  • Time
  • Show
Clear All
new posts

  • Hard-Push/Soft-Push: Are Things As They Seem?

    In another thread http://www.chessforums.org/chess-ope...html#post93937 Perseus posted a thoughtful post which seems to me to truly warrant a thread of its own, that it might be explored more thorougly:

    Originally posted by Perseus View Post
    Hmm, a thought occurred to me:
    How much are tactical and positional blunders the error of one side and how much are they the effort of (provoked by) the other?

    Since the recent Carlsen-Anand match has been mentioned.. Anand committed some blunders to chess history and Carlsen won the match. Anand and Carlsen both seemed to agree that while Anand made critical errors it was Carlsen's strategy that pushed Anand into doing so.
    I found that to be an intruiging revelation of sorts, that a grandmaster of Anand's level can be manoeuvred into terrible mistakes.

    Returning to the KG: if Anand can be thus set up/swindled/manipulated/played, then anyone can. I don't remember who it was but someone that lost a battle to a French force said, when asked why he lost that battle: "Well I always thought the French had something to do with it."
    I believe--with no solid evidence, only my senses and experience--that occaisionally it's possible to press an opponent too hard--giving them a "hard-push", thereby driving him towards accomplishment generally beyond his norm.

    Too hard a push, too magnificent a response.

    Perseus' thoughts seem to be towards the other pole of the spectrum of this...phenomenon?...almost as if a brilliantly insidious "soft-push", sustained, could turn an opponent's talents against himself, producing error and blunder.

    Perhaps we lack the nomenclature to discuss such things?

    I do believe Perseus is speculating about something which is a reality, tho' perhaps a very subtle one--hard to grasp and hard to speak of.

    Perhaps our calculating, too-resolute, manner of play corresponds only to an aspect of chess-play, and that things aren't entirely as they seem, regarding possibly subtler dynamics at work within the game?
    Last edited by Celadonite; 12-17-2013, 08:18 PM.
    "They work at the pace of amnesia."--M. Bloch

  • #2
    Perhaps it is a matter of simple mathematics. Let's count the options.
    The party attempting to achieve checkmate must:
    - Take into account pieces that can capture the piece attempting checkmate.
    - Take into account pieces that can block queens/bishops/rooks attempting checkmate (and >1 square distance).
    - Take into account a maximum of 8 flight squares for the opponent's king.

    The attacking party has to deny the defender all these avenues of escape while delivering a check.
    The defending party has tofind only one of these that works to deny his opponent checkmate.

    The attacker may be less aware of the defensive resources because he's looking for an attack instead of the defence. The defender with his back to the wall will find moves he might otherwise not.

    If you force your opponent to respond to play reactive chess, to march to your drum beat.. you're the only one creating the position. In my opinion this is sometimes a wasted effort, your opponent can do just as much to improve your position. To quote Tarrasch (I believe this is somewhat relevant)
    "When you don't know what to do, wait for your opponent to get an idea; it is sure to be bad."
    Kind of mental Jiujitsu.

    In the post in the other thread, I attempted to say that I believe Carlsen (with his strategy of dry chess without drawing and superb technique therein) steered Anand into his loss. Anand, in several games, tried to allow the kind of chess he was looking for, but Carlsen didn't let him, he lured Anand into the swamp and Vishy stepped into quicksand that would appear obvious to all.
    I do believe Carlsen helped create Anand's losses more than "Anand blunder on move x" could ever hope to suggest.

    I believe Spielmann complained that, while he was as good a tactician, Alekhine was far superior in creating positions where such tactics may occur. (For the record, Spielmann was a fantastic player for his day, but not in Alekhine's league tactically in my view) Alekhine just managed to make positions with tactical potential appear on the board like a magician. The playing strength of neither is in doubt, but how can it be Alekhine had an edge over Spielmann in this aspect? Perhaps Alekhine too managed to steer the games where he wanted them to to a certain degree?

    Another example.. There's a Fischer-Tal game, a Winawer French if I recall. Just a spectacular fighting draw. Fischer liked positions with a degree of clarity; and just when the game would get to quiet conclusion, Tal throws the monkey wrench. Fischer commented about one move that just created mayhem out of nothing, that he believed Tal was trying to confuse the issue. Well yes, that'd be exactly what Tal did, muddying the waters to create a field of battle where he would be better suited than Fischer to win.

    Or Lasker's views on rook placement. He'd place his rook on file such and such. The opponent then commits to a defensive strategy accordingly. Lasker moves the rook away to where he actually wanted it. When questioned about why he hadn't moved the rook there in one move, Lasker replied that his opponent wouldn't have done what Lasker wanted him to.



    Summarising, I do believe this is the art of playing the man, not the board. Or.. less polarised: to play the man, while not playing the board badly.
    Have you read the Forum rules?

    Queeg: Pawn to King Four. Holly: Horsie to King Bish Three.
    Rimmer: It's called a "knight," actually, Holly...
    Queeg: Knight to King Bishop three. Holly: Queen to Rook Eight. Checkmate.
    Queeg: That's an illegal move. Holly: Oh, sorry. Queens don't move like that. I was thinking of poker.
    Holly: Cleudo? You could be Colonel Mustard.
    Cat: If it's any help, I've been studying his tactics and there's a pattern emerging: Every time you make a move, he makes one too. *Winks to Holly*
    Holly: *Winks back* Thanks, Cat.
    --Red Dwarf

    Comment


    • #3
      Almost as if Carlesen created the conditions wherein Anand's blunder was possible?
      "They work at the pace of amnesia."--M. Bloch

      Comment


      • #4
        Exactly. Both gentlemen referred to this as Carlsen's strategy being successful.
        Have you read the Forum rules?

        Queeg: Pawn to King Four. Holly: Horsie to King Bish Three.
        Rimmer: It's called a "knight," actually, Holly...
        Queeg: Knight to King Bishop three. Holly: Queen to Rook Eight. Checkmate.
        Queeg: That's an illegal move. Holly: Oh, sorry. Queens don't move like that. I was thinking of poker.
        Holly: Cleudo? You could be Colonel Mustard.
        Cat: If it's any help, I've been studying his tactics and there's a pattern emerging: Every time you make a move, he makes one too. *Winks to Holly*
        Holly: *Winks back* Thanks, Cat.
        --Red Dwarf

        Comment


        • #5
          It's a brilliant concept, quite a subtle way of framing the dynamics of the chess conflict. A strategy of such subtlety that it produces both psychological conditions amenable to blunder as well as the postions suitable for such to manifest. If so, a sort of "quantum" chess, far removed from our normal conceptualizations of the game.

          I tend to think it is a higher concept of the chess conflict that's active in Carlsen's play, but here's an interesting article which perhaps/perhaps doesn't fit into some portion of the spectrum of these considerations: Does Chess Prodigy World No. 1 Magnus Carlsen practice Chess Hypnotism? ~ World Chess Championship 2013 Viswanathan Anand vs Magnus Carlsen at Chennai Hyatt Regency It raises questions, suggests possibilities, without providing proofs--only saying that the question has been raised.
          Last edited by Celadonite; 12-18-2013, 02:12 PM.
          "They work at the pace of amnesia."--M. Bloch

          Comment


          • #6
            This discussion looks FUN! allow me to jump in, if I may.

            I love that P brought up Alekhine and his odd play vs. Fischer and his ‘neat and tidy’ play. Alekhine loved to send out what I think of as ‘red herrings’ all the time. usually, it was a pawn push, a total sac, somewhere very odd-looking and out of place.

            What did they accomplish, these red herring moves? I believe they caused his opponents to look *away* from the action, away from where Alekhine intended to spring his attack. These ‘gifts’ are rarely taken by formidable opponents. But see, it didn’t matter; take or not, Alexander had accomplished his goal of steering the other guy’s mental faculties to *that part of the board*. Just sheer brilliance.

            And that, friends and neighbors, is why we’ll never play like Shredder or fritz or Houdini over the board. Well, not thevast, vast majority of us. Comps cannot become frightened, cannot talk themselves out of a good move, cannot know even who they are playing. Chess is now and has always been very, very psychological.

            The two aspects to chess are:

            1. good moves/lines/theory/board vision/tactical ability/calcuation/etcetera.

            2. good sleight of hand and a good feel for *who the opponent is* and what might throw them off their game.


            Anyone who doesn’t feel that personality plays a huge part in how one plays chess is delusional.
            Last edited by Skwerly; 12-18-2013, 05:14 PM.
            Alexander Alekhine is my chess hero.

            An eerie chess short story: The Empty Chair

            My newest chess story: Gamble: A Supernatural Chess Tale

            Comment


            • #7
              Originally posted by Skwerly View Post
              This discussion looks FUN! allow me to jump in, if I may.
              Please, do!

              Originally posted by Skwerly View Post
              I love that P brought up Alekhine and his odd play vs. Fischer and his ‘neat and tidy’ play.
              I love that Perseus brought this up stuff up--it's so easily overlooked, yet deserves more than passing comment.

              Originally posted by Skwerly View Post
              Alexander had accomplished his goal of steering the other guy’s mental faculties to *that part of the board*. Just sheer brilliance.
              That would be totally psychological! I've had experience in some of my chess doing this, and doubtlessly its been done to me without my being aware of it, too. In the "MindWarp" game I sent you, I did this in a sort of "inverted" way with moves 10-13...I wanted my King at f3, backing the pawns, and my opponent obliged by "forcing" me to go where I actually wanted to be--"Brer Rabbit". Wasted moves for him, though he felt he was rushing me around against my will, I'm sure.

              Originally posted by Skwerly View Post
              The two aspects to chess are:

              1. good moves/lines/theory/board vision/tactical ability/calcuation/etcetera.

              2. good sleight of hand and a good feel for *who the opponent is* and what might throw them off their game.
              I suspect the "board vision" is quite different from the way the board is normally viewed...not just a matter of exquisite calculation, but variables being calculated that don't quite fit into the standard tactical or strategic calculations we all strive to make. Variables, perhaps, we're not routinely aware of? Setting up another master such that he's blunder-prone not only positionally but psychologically is Deep-Stuff, over the horizon stuff.


              Originally posted by Skwerly View Post
              Anyone who doesn’t feel that personality plays a huge part in how one plays chess is delusional.
              I'm not sure I'd say exactly that. Perhaps only that they hadn't yet experienced the effects of personality figuring into their own experience of the game?

              I've got to dig thru my books, as I found a most interesting several paragraphs relating to Petrosian the other day, which might be pertinent to this sort of thing.
              Last edited by Celadonite; 12-18-2013, 05:58 PM.
              "They work at the pace of amnesia."--M. Bloch

              Comment


              • #8
                Yeah, you may be right re the delusional thing; I was fired up.

                What I do find, though, is that seasoned tournament players are far more likely to believe in chess psychology than is the casual internet player.

                While staring at a screen, you are dealing mostly only with moves, other than the player’s rating and maybe even their nickname or home country. Other than that, it’s just straight chess.

                But when you are sitting across from the man or woman who wants to beat the socks off you, and can see them, things change drastically.

                Like the one opponent I faced who had a bad breathing problem and sounded like Darth Vader the entire game. he was kicking the shucks out of me, too, until he blundered a queen and I happened to catch the blunder and capitalize on it.

                Can I prove that I was losing because he sounded like Darth Vader? No. but doesn’t it logically play a huge factor? If we had been battling on the ‘net, it wouldn’t matter if he were naked except for a bowling derby and flippers, because I’m just playing the silly board.
                Alexander Alekhine is my chess hero.

                An eerie chess short story: The Empty Chair

                My newest chess story: Gamble: A Supernatural Chess Tale

                Comment


                • #9
                  Here's that quote about Petrosian I mentioned earlier: I found it.

                  "Describing his (Petrosian's) algorithm of thinking, Botvinnik once wrote that, move by move, Petrosian decided which piece needs to be transferred to a better square and then just transferred it. No deep calculations, no long variations. It is true that this is partly supposition, since on another occaision Botvinnik stated that Petrosian was the only great player whose style of play has not been totally decoded yet."--Mihail Marin, "Learn from the Legends"

                  Boris Spassky, in "Spassky's 100 Best Games" says of Petrosian: "During the game, he plays like a very nice cat. But, this is not real, because after that he becomes like a tiger."

                  Burgess, Nunn, and Emms in "The Mammoth Book of the World's Greatest Chess Games", speaking of Petrosian: "Often it was even not clear what they (Petrosian's opponents) were fighting against, as Petrosian's deeply prophylactic play would be preventing ideas that had not even occurred to them."

                  Mike Henebry, in "Chess Wisdom" writes: "Botvinnik once said that Petrosian's style was not fully understood. Petrosian's penchant for manuevering was largely responsible for this mystique. He would play moves which seemed harmless, but the accumulated affect of them was often decisive."

                  Interesting stuff.
                  Last edited by Celadonite; 12-18-2013, 10:01 PM.
                  "They work at the pace of amnesia."--M. Bloch

                  Comment


                  • #10
                    Time to look at some Petrosian games.
                    Alexander Alekhine is my chess hero.

                    An eerie chess short story: The Empty Chair

                    My newest chess story: Gamble: A Supernatural Chess Tale

                    Comment


                    • #11
                      Anderssen-Louis Paulsen, Vienna 1873:
                      1.e4 e5 2.Nf3 d6 3.d4 exd4 4.Qxd4 Nc6 5.Bb5 Bd7 6.Bxc6 Bxc6 7.Bg5 ...
                      (( full game doesn't really matter for the topic, but for reference sake: Adolf Anderssen vs Louis Paulsen (1873) ))

                      I mean, this is just a charming little move by Anderssen. Possibly his sense of humour on display against one of the elite of the time. The normal way of it is 7.Nc3 Nf6 8.Bg5. What's white expecting here?!
                      Here I can imagine Paulsen scratching behind his ear, thinking to himself "now how do I take advantage of this..".
                      Since that game, the line's been analysed of course.
                      (1) You don't want to go 7... f6. Just intuitively that smels funny. 7... f6 8.Bh4 Nh6 9.Nc3 black will go queenside and Nf7-Nd5, but his kingside is fishy, e6 is weak and white has just a nice game. I would imagine f6 didn't occur to Paulsen as very viable.
                      (2) 7... Be7 8.Qxg7 Bf6 9.Qxh8 Bxh8 10.Bxd8 Bxb2 11.Bxc7 Kd7 12.Ba5 Bxa1 is about equal, but gosh that's a mess!
                      8.Bxe7 Qxe7 9.Qxg7 Bxe4 10.Qxh8 Bxf3+ 11.Kd2! and you have to find Qg5+!
                      This is just nuts. Paulsen probably saw the knight pawn going and knew enough. So what did he actually play?
                      (game) 7... Nf6. Just Nf6 and sure enough 8.Nc3 Anderssen transposes back into the main line and play continued as if nothing out of the ordinary occurred.
                      But I just bet Paulsen didn't appreciate the murky 7.Bg5 at all at the time! I mean, it's Anderssen just taunting Paulsen to do someting about it other than Nf6.


                      Allowing the opponent to make a bunch of bad moves..
                      Have you read the Forum rules?

                      Queeg: Pawn to King Four. Holly: Horsie to King Bish Three.
                      Rimmer: It's called a "knight," actually, Holly...
                      Queeg: Knight to King Bishop three. Holly: Queen to Rook Eight. Checkmate.
                      Queeg: That's an illegal move. Holly: Oh, sorry. Queens don't move like that. I was thinking of poker.
                      Holly: Cleudo? You could be Colonel Mustard.
                      Cat: If it's any help, I've been studying his tactics and there's a pattern emerging: Every time you make a move, he makes one too. *Winks to Holly*
                      Holly: *Winks back* Thanks, Cat.
                      --Red Dwarf

                      Comment


                      • #12
                        A. went on to win that game, too. Have to wonder if some small psychological effect from that so seemingly innocuous move might have snowballed within his oponent affecting later play.

                        Definitely a "soft-push", but probably on the very elementary end of the spectrum. He definitely offered a Moment of Blunder for his opponent to venture into.
                        "They work at the pace of amnesia."--M. Bloch

                        Comment


                        • #13
                          At strategical layer, one can choose whether a tactic is good to trigger or if it will just be stopped and make you lose precious tempi. The other day, I was trying to show this concept to a lower rated player, friend of mine, when I setup 2 scenarios in a game. In the first one, I saw he had a tactical resource and I made a subtle preventive move. He of course got excited when I had appearently fallen for it and went for it. I defended and stopped his attack, and the in-between move involved forced him to retreat and let me catch a couple of his pawns. Being leading the game in material, I put another tactic into motion... first, I captured a knight of his with my rook. He had 2 choices:

                          a chance to capture my rook and fall into a knight-fork, which would let me capture knight + rook against his capturing my rook;

                          Or, he had a chance to recapture a knight of mine and let me take my rook to a square where I would attack an undefendable pawn.

                          I tried to show him then, that chess is more than just triggering a tactic. Later on, I referred to it as a "forced knights exchange" since I was superior in material and I was expecting to do the exchanges. It never ocurred to me he would fall for it, as I didn't expect it. When he said "nice try, but no cigar", I told him what was my original idea. And told him that I only trigger a tactic when, whatever the result, I get the better profit out of it... Positionally or materially. I think this is the hard part of chess for most players, coz it's even more difficult to see beyond tactics as opposed to calculating the moves to reach to the position where you can trigger them.

                          Also it doesn't mean a tactic that is stoppable now will be stoppable forever... Chess is also about tempi and overworked pieces. Maybe the mere threat of triggering a tactic (that you never will, coz your plans are beyond) will force the opponent into playing things he's not comfortable with, and where the best positional understanding will kick in.

                          Last edited by Meer; 01-04-2014, 07:05 PM.
                          Don't drive faster than your guardian angel can fly.

                          Comment

                          Working...
                          X