Wednesday, January 18, 2012


It's pretty much impossible to keep up with ChessBase. They've created a juggernaut of software opening titles (mostly) with a few things on tactics and strategy tossed in for good measure. They come out with about 4 titles (or more) per month. Once ChessBase caught on, they had to keep publishing frantically like this to keep the cash flow going.

If there is one weakness to DVDs it is "attention." Not wandering attention, or distraction, but that to get much out of the DVD you have to sit and watch for some time (continuously). When Nigel Davies did his on the English it was 7 hours! Yes, it was a bargain, but it was a brain crusher.

We know (most of us anyway) that if we stop a DVD to take care of something else, our chances of picking it up again are like success in repeated marriages, about 50% of the last one!

For the presenter it makes sense to do a bunch of them at once to save on trips to Hamburg for ChessBase. And certain titles have no "spoilage date" because they are not about openings but timeless stuff--like Mikhalchishin's "Strategy University #4!"

I can't keep up! I get in a slew of DVDs only to find Germany has released two more that weren't available when my order was placed.

BUT.... BUT...BUT... DVDs have ONE terrific advantage if you can put up with the huge flow of information! Usually what you need to know, what is hot and current, is easy to find. If you are interested in the latest wrinkle of ZZZ, chances are, it's on the DVD.

As you may have guessed, a pile of DVDs came in yesterday... but I didn't order the quantities I usually do because getting "older" DVDs sold has become harder and harder because "newer" stuff is coming out faster than one can flush the john!

As I work on my new website (still under wraps) I realize my task will be formidable--keeping it current like in the old days. Every day people will pop in to see what's new or if I have that ITEM that was just announced overseas as if it is in the US right now! I explain all this stuff but getting everyone to read everything is a job! An impossible job.

Yesterday I got my latest 20 page marketing newsletter from Maryland. I read the first 6 pages, some more this morning, and will finish it off tonight and tomorrow. That is what MUST be done. Absorb it all, remember it like a chess variation. But it MUST be read. There were some good ideas in there. I have to take time out, somehow, somewhere, to take advantage of them to get my $$$s worth.

Tomorrow night I am going to be either giving a chess workshop on something fascinating I found a few days ago, or, better yet, look at a game recently played by a friend for comedy relief against someone who is trying to change his opening repertoire. My friend freely admits he was lost, but the guy who is changing his repertoire apparently has trouble in the "winning a won game" department. Should be full of hilarity and questions. Drop by. 6 p.m., 1101 W. 4th Street, Davenport, IA. If chess can't be about FUN, we've all missed the boat.

PS: I will be getting out a new Chess Gazette, #161, soon, with a clever article by Phil Millett.

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