The Amateur Eye – Computers Any One?

I am mindful that my ideas aimed at demonstrating the chessboard as a focal point of learning principles that do emerge from math, being largely of geometric patterns of board features and the chess men themselves sometimes omit in teaching techniques a value of understanding the individual or as a team just how these relate to the board.

In their individual contribution to square movement and power often I find it a valuable tool that was taught by Dr. Tarrasch in THE GAME OF CHESS where he illustrates numerous mind training techniques.  One such example can be seen that gives the student a unique experience in understanding the cooperation of units and uses the combination of K/B/N vs. king where the goal is to reduce the squares available by force of the lone king and with the power of the B+N+K forces a position where the king’s mobility is restricted and the combined units establish a mating net.

Then there are examples of B/B/K versus king; R/K versus king; Q/K versus king.

What about the pawns?  There are various examples showing the student how to judge if the King with a lone pawn can win against a king on the open board.  That is demonstrated by the drawing of a triangle or square measuring the distance between the Pawn and king and support by the King if needed.  If the king can get inside the constructed square,  then it is usually a draw.

These simple exercises by  a coach or student are the essential building blocks of board to piece relationships.  At the same time, the student or students learn the meaning of time, space, and power in both independent and dependent roles of units.  It builds on the team concept of combating enemy forces and terrain planning. From such come an understanding of the bishop-pair, two rooks in a general plan in both attack and defense.

Since I learned chess the old-fashion way, I cannot say that a computer program will or will not emphasize in some way these techniques given above.  However, I bet most teachers or coaches do not put much on this learning mode from the early history of chess instruction.


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