I upgraded to Windows 10 this weekend.
For reasons of not wanting to be at the 'bleeding edge' of technology on the machine that I use for nearly all my personal computing activity ( although I'm sure many would argue that Windows 10 is nowhere near that state ), I had held off until almost the last minute.
Agreed, I had already installed Win10 on an older laptop without issues.
That laptop is defying the last technician who repaired it : still working ( the CPU has lost a large part of its heat-protective coating, apparently, and "it's only a matter of time" ) but that's understandable, since I barely use it apart from switching it on to ensure it updates regularly.
I already took most of my data from it and have already backed it up obsessively, as one does. No doubt, I will forget which backup is the latest and holds most information if I ever need to get at the data.
However, back to the main upgrade, and a flawless install process.
It took about 90 minutes and I only had to click a few times, mainly to say "no" to sharing lots of things with Microsoft and/or the world's applications that apparently want to use my camera and microphone, amongst other things !
So far all my chess software ( now "apps "! ) works, but I expected nothing more since they all worked on Win7 and Win8.1 as well.
Even my old Convekta software ( from the 80s or 90s ? ) remains in working order, along with the more modern Aquarium, although frighteningly that is already 2 years out-of-date, and still has the tendency to freeze when I try to exit.
Some of them ( Chess Position Trainer in particular ) seem to start quicker, but generally they just work, and I am happy with that.
The only issues I've come across were that my browser switched back to Google as the default search engine ( easily corrected back to Duck Duck Go ) and quite a few apps don't show up in the "All Apps" list, which is annoying.
This means that I cannot set my default browser to anything but Edge or IE. I use Opera it as my main browser, but it just cannot be selected : very frustrating !
Same for a few others.
For example, I use Dasher for playing chess on ICC, and it doesn't exist as an app, so its not showing up in "All Apps" although it does appear when I search.
Irritating, but not terminal. Doubtless, some intensive internet searching will suggest some ( read, many :) solutions, but I will leave that for now ( although if anyone has the solution....? ).
So far, I'd put myself in the 'happy with Win10' crowd since it does what I want in an effective way and without any major issues. Additionally, having installed it, I can always revert to Win8.1 within a month, yet still qualify for the 'free' Win10 upgrade, which is re-assuring.
I will note that it doesn't start up as quickly as Win8.1, or at least that's my impression. Maybe it just needs a few re-starts and general use until it settles down.
Anyway, its a tick on my virtual check list that indicates I have secured a future-proof operating system ( although still behind my aged mother who upgraded about 10 months ago ! ) and can look to fill in the ticks on a few more interesting boxes on that list now.
24 July, 2016
I upgraded to Windows 10 this weekend.
20 July, 2016
The time elapsed since the last post just shows me that I have been tied up too closely with work issues.
What chess I played has revealed that I really need to pay attention to tactics, as I miss them far too often.
I reach decent positions, am not sure how to progress ( often my opponent is in the same slippery place ) then miss a tactic and spiral downhill afterwards.
Here's a typical missed opportunity, easy to spot when shown as an exercise, but easy for me to miss with a time-constraint.
|White to play|
The other area is endgames (or maybe its calculation in endgames).
|Black to play|
25 March, 2016
I'm sure I've mentioned to all my avid fans that I play the "London System".
No? Oh, well, I do, simply because it requires little maintenance, absolves me having to play 1.e4 and deal with the Sicilian fanatics and enables me to reach the middlegame relatively intact, if rarely with the advantage that is supposed to be expected with playing White.
Although often touted as a 'boring opening', leading to many draws, like any opening, it has enough in it to gain quick wins, often with the 'Greek gift' type of attack.
However, I think the below is an unusual type of mate to be revealed by this particular opening , to say the least.
I admit, gained with a lot of ( I assume unwitting ) help from Black, and I doubt I would ever see this outside of blitz.
Really, this was "trickery" against someone who must be completely naive in chess, to allow the manuoevre Nd2-b3-c5 plus Bb5, when his king was sitting at d2.
I certainly don't feel guilty : sometimes satisfaction is its own entertainment.
21 February, 2016
One thing I enjoy about a blitz game are those occassions when one side has the upper hand, but the other has an immediate riposte, like some "sword of Damocles", hanging over his opponent.
Usually, this is heightened by the time factor : the attacking side could win easily with enough time to think, but that's the problem !
Here's an example from recent play.
Black is more than ahead in material, but it seems like his Knight is pinned to his Queen, and a lowly pawn is about to regain the piece.
But is there a simple way out ?
|Has Black just lost a piece ?|
|21...Nf2+ 22. Kh8 : Mate in 3|
There is a much quicker and more elegant mate in 3, and the clue is in a previous post, if you need it !
14 February, 2016
Below, the top 10 Openings for T67
4 King pawn, 4 Queen pawn, and 2 others, Dutch and English.
Hardly much of a change over the seasons in major openings played, with the split between King- and Queen-pawn, much the same as before, even the percentage is close, 51% for King's Pawn this season,compared to 53% : not a significant change.
In fact, this is effectively the same as T66, with a switch of ranking between the Spanish Game/Ruy Lopez and the Indian/Torre Attack, and only by 1 game, plus the Réti loses out to the Dutch ( but since the Réti is often played as a transpositional opening, its hard to tell what the intended opening was :)
Oddest opening, at least from my view, is 1.e3, occurring 4 times.
Appropriately, White won only 1 of these games ( and that was via a blatant Black blunder), losing 2 and drawing the other.
Only 6 games in the King's Gambit, with a slight edge to White, but no Falkbeer Counter-Gambit this time around.
Eleven games played with less than 10 moves, but no traps, just over-looked tactics.
Longest game : 124 moves and decided by an unfortunate mistake by the knight-less side to leave a King, Knight and Pawns vs King and Pawns ending, which was played well on both sides until, as would seem inevitable, the knight endured at the end.
However, could it have been saved by Black at the 111th move ?
|Black to play|
What should Black play to give himself a good chance of a draw ?
|C00-C19||French Defence||70 (9%)|
|D00-D05||Queen's Pawn ( General )||66 (9 %)|
|D30-D69||Queen's Gambit Declined||45 ( 6.0 % )|
|B10-B19||Caro-Kann||41 (5.3 % )|
|C60-C99||Indian & Torre Attack||40 (5 %)|
|A45-A50||Spanish Game||39 (5 %)|
|A80-A99||Dutch||23 ( 3 % )|
|E60-E99||King's Indian||28 ( 3.77 % )|
All games were re-indexed by ECO code using Chess Assistant 11,.
The Opening classification ranges ( ie grouping ECO codes), I based on those from Chessville (many thanks, although it seems to have disappeared :(
See also T56 Summary, T55 Summary, T51 Summary, T50 Summary and T47 Summary, T57-59 Summary , T61 Summary, T62 Summary, T63 Summary and T66 Summary
08 February, 2016
The following is one of the few times that I really felt that there was something in the position that screamed for action ( and when I was proved correct ! ).
|How to Proceed?|
|White to play and win|
It might only be a blitz game, but it was a satisfying feeling to find and play a good combination !
What to play ?