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  1. 11 Jan '11 02:25
    In Shakespeare's "Hamlet", the protagonist at one point exclaims, "O God! I could be bounded in a nut-shell, and count myself a king of infinite space..." Is this not a description (however oblique) of our beloved game? Chess is bounded in a 64-square nut-shell with rigid rules governing play, and yet what an infinity of possibilities stretches out before us. Galaxies of moves and counter-moves swirl within our nut-shell. Chess is rather like the TARDIS of Doctor Who: bigger on the inside than on the outside. Chess is an Archetypal Image of the Mind of That Which Can Not Be Named. It is also other things to other people, that's what makes chess so fascinating. As you can tell, I'm more interested in the "meaning" of chess than in the "mechanics" of our Divine Game. How about you?
  2. Standard member ChessPraxis
    Cowboy From Hell
    11 Jan '11 02:50
    Originally posted by LeFou
    In Shakespeare's "Hamlet", the protagonist at one point exclaims, "O God! I could be bounded in a nut-shell, and count myself a king of infinite space..." Is this not a description (however oblique) of our beloved game? Chess is bounded in a 64-square nut-shell with rigid rules governing play, and yet what an infinity of possibilities stretches out before us. ...[text shortened]... in the "meaning" of chess than in the "mechanics" of our Divine Game. How about you?
    I just play the damned game.
  3. 11 Jan '11 02:57 / 2 edits
    Originally posted by ChessPraxis
    I just play the damned game.
    I just play the game and life be damned. 😞
  4. 11 Jan '11 03:02
    Play chess or cure cancer?

    Not everyone can cure cancer. Not everyone can play chess. Those that can play, will play.

    It is a terrible disease.
  5. Standard member thesonofsaul
    King of the Ashes
    11 Jan '11 05:23
    I believe Hamlet was refering to insanity in that bit, so I agree. Totally insane to keep playing this dumb game.

    I also agree that chess is a very metaphorical game. But no one should talk about it. It's awkward. Like men talking about love. Just leave it alone and let it be.
  6. 11 Jan '11 10:18
    Originally posted by thesonofsaul
    But no one should talk about it. It's awkward. Like men talking about love.
    Or men talking about Fight Club.

    Interesting. I wonder if anyone has ever named a Chess Opening variation the "Fight Club". Has merit.
  7. 11 Jan '11 12:37
    Originally posted by Tiwaking
    Or men talking about Fight Club.

    Interesting. I wonder if anyone has ever named a Chess Opening variation the "Fight Club". Has merit.
    If someone introduced a 'fight club' opening, I would play it every time. What a brilliant name for an opening.
    I imagine it would have something to do with pretending to be the four knights (boring, quiet,not very popular with the ladies) until some mad sacrifice or trap transposes it into a super aggressive, razor sharp sac fest that leaves the victim feeling strangely violated.
    Genius.
  8. 11 Jan '11 12:46
    Originally posted by LeFou
    Chess is an Archetypal Image of the Mind of That Which Can Not Be Named. It is also other things to other people, that's what makes chess so fascinating. As you can tell, I'm more interested in the "meaning" of chess than in the "mechanics" of our Divine Game. How about you?
    "While the Baroque rules of chess could only have been created by humans, the rules of go are so elegant, organic, and rigorously logical that if intelligent life forms exist elsewhere in the universe, they almost certainly play go" -- guess who?

    Richard
  9. 11 Jan '11 14:18
    What is go?
  10. Standard member ChessPraxis
    Cowboy From Hell
    11 Jan '11 16:56
    Originally posted by witchfyndergeneral
    What is go?
    It's "Big Fancy Checkers."
  11. Standard member Ichibanov
    King of slow
    11 Jan '11 17:09
    Originally posted by witchfyndergeneral
    If someone introduced a 'fight club' opening, I would play it every time. What a brilliant name for an opening.
    I imagine it would have something to do with pretending to be the four knights (boring, quiet,not very popular with the ladies) until some mad sacrifice or trap transposes it into a super aggressive, razor sharp sac fest that leaves the victim feeling strangely violated.
    Genius.
    Google "Frankenstein-Dracula variation". It's a line of the Vienna and is as close to a Fight Club opening as I've ever seen. To bad it was named over a decade before the movie.
  12. 11 Jan '11 17:23
    Originally posted by LeFou
    In Shakespeare's "Hamlet", the protagonist at one point exclaims, "O God! I could be bounded in a nut-shell, and count myself a king of infinite space..." Is this not a description (however oblique) of our beloved game?... How about you?
    The quote finishes: "...were it not that I have bad dreams." Rumor has it that an early folio went on, "In those dreams, I am in zugzwang."
  13. Subscriber Paul Leggett
    Chess Librarian
    12 Jan '11 00:43
    Originally posted by thesonofsaul
    I believe Hamlet was refering to insanity in that bit, so I agree. Totally insane to keep playing this dumb game.

    I also agree that chess is a very metaphorical game. But no one should talk about it. It's awkward. Like men talking about love. Just leave it alone and let it be.
    Now I know why I like chess books with lots of diagrams...
  14. 12 Jan '11 23:50
    Originally posted by witchfyndergeneral
    What is go?
    A Chinese game that looks a bit like draughts (that's checkers to our trans-Atlantic friends), but is very very hard to master. It's also very hard for computers to play well due to its impossibly high branching factor. The average branching factor (number of legal moves) in chess is around 30, whereas in Go it's around 200. The combinations just get too big for current computers to handle, so strong humans can still beat the best computers.

    I've played it a few times .. it's interesting, but I never really got the hang of it.
  15. 13 Jan '11 01:11
    Originally posted by witchfyndergeneral
    What is go?
    "Originating in China, where it is known as Wei-ch'i, Go has reached its highest expression in Japan, where it has a professional elite and a following of millions.
    "Go is an abstract game for two, played on a board (the 'Go-ban'😉 marked with a regular lattice of 19x19 lines. The men are circular counters called stones and are of two colours, black and white. There are 181 black stones and 180 white stones, being together equal in number to the board intersections on which the game is played. It is rare, however, for all the stones to be used in a game.
    "The aim of the game is to enclose territory, represented by vacant intersections. A secondary aim is to capture enemy stones, each of which is of equivalent value to one intersection. The secondary aim is related to the first, since territory can only be firmly held by stones immune from capture. The winner is the player with most points when there is no territory left to be claimed and no man to be captured."--David Pritchard (Oriental Board Games)
    You could say that the men ('stones'😉 in Go are like paratroopers; they are 'dropped' onto an intersection and remain there until captured or the game ends. Once on the board, the men do not move. Interesting game: simple rules, complex play; and, I am told, just as addictive as chess.