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Three dimensions of chess

Three dimensions of chess

Jun 16, 2011, 11:40 PM 2

According to Kasparov, chess has three dimensions: material, position and initiative. Material is simply the balance of pieces, including bishop vs knight. Position refers to king safety, badly or well positioned pieces, central control, space advantage, pawn structure etc. The initiative refers to the dynamic aspects of the game: who has the initiative, tactical chances, and the trend of the game. The trend refers to whether black or white is currently improving their position. Note that the player whose position is currently better may be moving in a downwards direction relative to the opponent, eg white has developed more quickly but fails to exploit this temporary advantage. The psychological aspects of initiative include which player feels in control of the game, whether he has the feeling that his position is improving, and which player is feeling more pressure.

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