[ExI] Advice for watching on-line chess

BillK pharos at gmail.com
Sat Nov 27 15:32:20 UTC 2021

For those interested in chess ------- (At least one!).

Simple advice for watching and understanding on-line chess
by  Tyler Cowen November 27, 2021

Yes, the computer evaluations are extremely useful.  But they are
measuring the quality of the position when two computers are playing.
Yet most of the games you care about tend to be two humans playing
each other.  And those humans do not play like computers.  The
computer might say the game is even, and maybe it is with perfect
play, but one side can be much harder (easier) to play than the other.
So I suggest this trick.

Go to analysis.sesse.net, which covers top games (only).  Scan down
the vertical list of all possible moves and consider the distribution
of outcomes.  If the top move is great for White, but all the others
are not, robustness is low, especially if the top move for White is
not super-obvious (such as recapturing a Queen, etc.).  If all the
sequences look very good for White (Black), you will know that for
humans the position probably is somewhat better for White than the
single computer evaluation number will indicate.  Robustness against
human error will be present.

>From the article comments, I liked -
JF   2021-11-27 09:21:37
The best broadcasts always have a gradient of chess ability among the
commentators, e.g. former top contender or champ plus a ~24 or 2500
rated player who has peaked. Right now Polgar and Giri are paired up
at Chess24 giving comments and, naturally, the commentary is such that
they are effectively communicating with each other. Way over my head!


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