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Hey, gang :)
I was just wondering if any of you physically track your moves, or possible moves, on paper while you're playing. If so---does anyone have a method you've found easy or successful? I'm imagining there may be players who feel it's "cheating" in some way (though I've seen video clips of Fischer jotting notes), but I don't, especially since I'm incapable of retaining the moves as I work them through; I NEED to track them somehow.
I was thinking to somehow do it on miniature boards printed on paper (just the pieces involved in the moves, not all the pieces---it would take forever! lol), because my brain can't easily process the annotated lists. I already have a word document with tiny blank boards, 15-up on a page, for another purpose, but thought it might help with learning/playing. So...any comments or suggestions for an extreme novice (or even experienced) player such as myself? Thanks!
P.S. The 15-up boards are in a Word document. I will gladly send it to anyone if you message and ask.
...actually, the boards in my Word document are 10-up on a page :)
Well, I know in every game I play, whether on Chessmaster, or any of my solitaire chess games I write every single move down. But using the boards to plan several different lines of attack depending on what the CPU or your opponent plays is a great idea. You can play can coordinate attacks easier on that than maybe some people can do in their brains. So I think it is a good idea :)
Thank you :) And I'm hoping someone will have a suggestion or two, if they do record/plan while playing...
Most competitive/club/tournament players do note their moves on paper for their records. I presume that at high levels of competition it is done in case there is a dispute regarding the moves made, which does happen from time to time. I have not had much experience at all with club chess, and have never felt the need to note my moves, but it probably comes down to personal preference. I have stored my "analysis board" moves in the handy "notes" section sometimes while playing online, but that's about it.
wow, kenneth, I was shocked that I saw someone posted in here! lol
Actually, I realized afterwards that when I see players making notations, it's what you just explained---they're noting their moves as they play. The thing I was wondering is if there's an effective method of "thinking through" possible moves on paper while playing because I'm unable to keep them in my head! lol It seems no one else has the need to do it, so when I'm ready, I'll have to see if I can figure something out, though I think it would be too complicated. Thanks for commenting though! :)
Personally, I take notes often. I just use algebraic note taking. I do not use paper to figure out moves. For me, thinking about move in my head was a little harder at first but has gotten progressively better with time.
As far as players feeling you are cheating- when in doubt, ask if they would mind, I doubt most would care.
Thanks, Ryan :) Wow, two comments in one day! My head is reeling! lol
Actually, the only person I would play with in person, at least now, is my boyfriend Mark. He wouldn't care at all. He tries to help me on the occasions we do play. I just need some way to be able to "see" the moves better, not forget to check certain aspects, etc. I truly have retention problems and it's frustrating 'cause I'd like to get a better handle on playing. Thanks so much for your comment 'cause you're making me think it's just a matter of time and I'll get better at it.
If you are talking about over-the-board play, then note-taking is expressly forbidden, to the extent that one may not even write down one's intended next move, before-hand. The score-sheet records the moves that have been played, not thoughts, analysis and intentions.
Note-taking in correspondence chess is, of course, fine and usual. On this site pencil and paper are unnecessary... there's a place to type notes on the game page.
I can completely relate to what you are saying. In fact, honestly, a big part of why I play chess is because I have Attention Deficit Disorder- chess helps me with this. Part of ADD is an impairment of working memory which is what you are describing- the ability to keep thoughts in your head long enough to actually think about them.
As I said before, it definitely get better with time. Also, practice your tactics like crazy! If you do 50 tactics puzzles a day, you will be amazed at how much your board vision and ability to find moves will improve. You will spot problems much more easily, etc...
As far as recording games(Which I record games for analysis later), I will admit- if find that it does distract me a bit. Something I have planned to experiment with in the near future is video recording my games so that I can record them later.
Keep us posted on how things go, if you figure out a good system, I would love to hear about it.
Prawn, this all makes perfect sense and I really appreciate you explaining it to me. Since I don't plan on actually playing an in-person game with anyone, but my boyfriend, I know he won't mind once I finally figure out how to do it. I have little blank boards pasted up on sheets, so I may be able to figure out how to do it that way. Thanks!
Ryan, I have severe neurotoxicity which creates "brain fog" which is definitely a lot like ADD. Personally, I think most things of this nature are related to some form of heavy metal toxicity. Mine is definitely from mercury toxicity and in time, if not chelated out of the brain, the problem worsens.
I, too, have found that the Tactics Trainer has helped me see the board and moves better, but only a move or two in advance. I'm incapable, as far as I can tell, to think more than that ahead and still retain it. That's why I want to develop some sort of system for myself in order to learn how to play the game better and understand it as well as I'm able. It's not for competition purposes or anything like that. It's also for enjoyment :)
It will be a while before I get around to actually playing "hands on" that way (my life is very overwhelming), but if I do and find a system that's helpful, I will definitely let you know :)
Thanks SO much for your input!
This is true for competitive, tournament play. In casual play, even over-the-board, I don't think most people would care if you made notes.
I will usually notate all my games and I occasionally will add additional notes, such as other moves that I thought might be better, both for myself and my opponent. Sometime even use annotation marks (blunders mainly).
So then, Martin, when you make notes, you're just writing them out, similar to the annotated way the moves are typically written? I think what I want to develop is a way of noting them on an actual mock board on paper so I can easily SEE the moves. The annotated stuff makes me glaze over and I get easily confused, even with the coordinates on the board. I know---I'm pathetic! lol That's why I brought up the subject in the first place! lol
I find algebraic annotation difficult to visualize beyond a certain number of moves as well. Some books give you visual board positions at different points in the game, which helps show how the game is progressing. But my "Penguin Book of Chess Openings" by William Hartston has no diagrams, and unless I get a board out, it's not easy to follow.
I'm just wondering if there is a mobile chess program which could store multiple screen shots of your games - what with Blackberries and fancy mobile phones etc... it might not be too difficult to set it up.
As far as reading chess books with Algebraic notation, I carry around a little pocket magnetic chess set and make the move so I can see them- although I think there is also use to trying to see the board in your head.
On the Android platform, there are several programs which are good, try searching "chess database" in your respective phone application repository/marketplace.
Well, guys, I'm not so much looking to record the games I play (Mark does this), but to find a way of working through the moves somehow on paper 'cause I can't keep them in my head. It's really to help me WHILE I'm playing, not for studying after the fact. I'm incapable of going from one move to the next without forgetting what I worked out only the move before! lol I already know I'm not really the best candidate for a game like chess, but that's not stopping me from wanting to understand it more and at least get better at it. I just love the game :)
A mini magnetic set would be best then, as ColdCoffee said. I'm sure your opponents wouldn't mind you having it as an aid to your play in "friendly" games.
ah, Mark actually has a mini magnetic set :) That's a great suggestion, kenneth. Thank you :)
In official competitions at regular time controls, keeping score is required of both players except in severe time trouble. That's not "note-taking" in any sense. In fact, FIDE even outlawed the once common practice of writing your move down before you made it (most players then covered it kup on the scoresheet with their pen so the opponent couldn't see).
In order to claim a time forfeit by the opponent or a draw by repetition or the 50-move rule, you must have an accurate and up to date scoresheet. And you can be forfeited by the arbiter if you do not keep score - it isn't an option.
But using notes, diagrams, or analysis sets should get you immediately forfeited. A clear and direct violation of the rules. In competition, it's just you, the board, the clock, and the scoresheet.
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