20, 21 + Mac Setup

Feb 13, 2013, 9:05 AM |

2/11/13 and 2/12/13 Polgar 5334: 342, Chess School 1a: 466, LC: 1, WC: 20

Man these puzzles are getting hard. The Ivanschenko mate in twos aren't too bad since they look like a game and you are given a hint, mate w/ queen, etc. But with the Polgar there is no hint, there are very few pieces on the board blocking the King so you really have to figure out how they all interact. It is taking me about twice as long to do a page in Polgar as it does with the Ivanschenko.

As far as the computer situation, I've finally found something I like. Turzo wants me to get into annotating my games and for the last couple of games I was hopping from one program to the next, using Shredder on the Mac, SCID on the Mac, Chessbase Reader in Parallels, etc. He told me to figure out Shredder and just use that since Chessbase Reader won't let you save, you can email, but it is a cumbersome solution. Unfortunately after messing with Deep Shredder 11 on my Mac, I found that it is tedious to use too. I heard that ChessX was great but it won't run on my 32bit Intel Mac.

Luckily I found a great solution. Sigma Chess. I remember playing it before this whole OS X stuff started on the Mac back in OS 9. I downloaded Sigma Chess and the Stockfish and Fruit UCI engines and I am set to go. Sigma Chess lets you easily annotate games with a permanent little window that you can type in, with Shredder you had to dig four levels deep into the menu system for each comment you wanted to make.

Sigma Chess also handles PGN games and collections much better. Shredder will open collections, but it is a pain to add games and manipulate the collection. With Sigma Chess it is very nice. I don't know where Stockfish and Fruit rank caompared to Shredder but I assume that they are all very good and certainly plenty good to pick up my blunders. At my level, the subtleties of the game are not my major concern, big errors are and these engines should be good enough for that.