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ccmcacollister 368 ( +1 | -1 )
Chess Freeware 15-player Grob showdown;S.Rnd-Robin
Under the heading of Strange-But-True ...perhaps?! Is the following method of killing time till SuperBowl kick-off !
Get together 15 of your Best Friends among free Chess playing programs and have them conduct a 120 game Single Round Robin tournament to explore their relative strengths as well as your favorite line of the Grob Opening!?
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-> www.edcollins.com

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Be sure to see the quote from Basman's book about the Grob; which relates the positional Center Concept of the Grob ... that being; It is right to begin building your center first with the units of least value, then adding in progressively heavier units as development there continue. For eg, from pawns to minors to Rooks to Queen.
So we are told the key tenet of the Grob's Opening (Finally...my eyes are opened! A Very Gestaltic day indeed!!). What is there then that is of lesser value than a pawn? "Nothing" he says*. And so before pawns, we should First seek to occupy the Center with NOTHING! And so we have the Grob. There you go ....
FIRST seek to occupy the Center with, NOTHING ! The Grob ...
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He explains his whys etc of chosing that opening, and the particular sequence beginning 1.g4 d5 2.Bg2 Bxg4 , partly from liking the Grob and partly to try to equalize matters for some of the engines that lacked an opening book or at least a Good opening book ... says our SuperBowl Sundaymorning Scientist. And of course it does rule out both the Petroff AND Diamano's Defense ... so there must be Some sense to it. }8~D

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To give a bit of a hint; Crafty was in it. Actually 2 versions of Crafty, but neither of those Won it. That renowned GlorySeeker "Fritz" was not in it, but as usual did manage to create controversy, according to 'An Anonymous Official' who claims that,
"World Champion Topalov does Not believe Fritz's claim to be at home, under treatment for unspecified kidney or bladder problems! On a flight from CORUS to the USA, we noted Fritz did not seem at all interested nor in need of utilizing the Chessplayers' Water Closet! In fact, when I compared them to WC trips by Topalov ... in both length and quantity, the silicon-cheater's were less than the Champions, and without a doubt Inferior in every way! ###################################################

}8-)
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Footnote to * above:

Personally That seems a bit of a Short-Cut to me. First, I would say that a "tempo" is less than a pawn. And that brings up the concept of 'How to occupy the center with tempos, yet no material units' ... And yet again Grob has the answer with Bg2 !
And what then is less than a tempo? How about a "pull", if that = 1/2 tempo ...
And less than a PULL is?! C'mon, everyone from "DownUnder will know THIS ONE !
Think metaphysical-philosophical now... " _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ ?"
To which you, or Some, Might answer "NOTHING"
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PS// My QUESTIONs!
A)
Does anyone else have any Computer vs Computer tournament results aor play-offs, etc, to add to this?
B) All you GROB players ... what you think of these games? Anything interesting there> ? [I lack the Grobishness to know. While I find it interesting and entertaining
, it is not something that I play or have much knowlege of. Except the also interesting thoughts by Schiller that I heard one time about the Grob, then heard thought #2 just yesterday. to paraphrase them:
(1) That 1.g4 is 'The worst possible opening move' ... and yet, now hear that
(2) Any opening called 'dubious' is PLAYABLE!
Maybe I've missed something there. Sounded a bit contradictory at first. Perhaps not tho, if he is saying that 'g4 is the worst, but still playable?!'. Is there a Grobber
here who knows that?
Thanks if so!
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ionadowman 130 ( +1 | -1 )
An entertaining beginning... ... to this discussion, ccmcacollister!
In response to your request of a response from "everyone Downunder", concerning the more abstruse justifications of playing openings such as the Grob, here's a suggestion. What's less than a PULL? I reckon it's the SUCK.
The worth of a suck can't be measured in fractions of a tempo, exactly. Rather, it is an inducement to the opponent to occupy squares that you want him to occupy. You will be familiar with the concept in tactical terms, such as the decoy sacrifice. The strategic notion is to be found in many of the more Fabian defences that Black might adopt, such as the Modern or the Pirc. For the White side, no doubt the Nimzowitsch-Larsen has the same strategic aim. So perhaps we can add the Grob to the list of openings that suck?

(Sorry Craig: I couldn't resist - well...didn't want to resist, really.) Unlike many chess players, I'm disinclined to view outlandish openings or defences as criminal offences. There's something attractive about the weird. Mike Basman likes to think outside the square, in his case the square formed by d4,e4,d5,e5. I reckon we can learn more about chess by Basman's, Uteljky and others' championing of obscure and bizarre lines.
Cheers,
Ion
ionadowman 70 ( +1 | -1 )
Well, that's disappointing... ... I would have thought my last would have provoked a lively correspondence...
Perhaps some examples of the strategy behind the Grob would be apposite here?

The problem with the Grob, as I understand it, is that in boxing terms it's the same as an orthodox fighter "leading with the right". Literally true with the Grob. Your intentions are clear and direct: an attack on the K-side. But recall the chess aphorism: an action on the flank is best countered by an attack in the centre. The reply 1...d5 or maybe 1...e5 look pretty good responses!

So on the face of it, the Grob Opening is seriously problematic. What countervailing advantages does it have to offset these difficulties?
Cheers,
Ion
bucklehead 45 ( +1 | -1 )
Ion deserves a prize! I'm no fan of the Grob, though it certainly can't be "the worst possible opening move." But entirely aside from that (and yet including that, so as not to run afoul of the theme of the discussion), as a professional writer I am extremely gratified to see a poster in these lowly forums cram such excellent words as "apposite," "aphorism," and "countervailing" into an everyday post; and yet the one word that very nearly brought a tear to my eye was the insanely evocative "Fabian."

Bravo, Ion--bravo!
ccmcacollister 15 ( +1 | -1 )
ion .... I thought it was very funny! While I'd had in mind "what is the sound of one hand clapping" as less than a pull ... I like yours better :)))
ionadowman 28 ( +1 | -1 )
Zen... ...ain't my long suit. Nor is modesty. But thanks for the positive feedback, guys.

I've finally had a chance to read all of Ed Collins's tourney. Very entertaining. I'll look at some of the games later. It might be interesting to see how often, and with what success, the Grob has been essayed on GK.
Cheers,
Ion
ganstaman 100 ( +1 | -1 )
buckelhead : "I'm no fan of the Grob, though it certainly can't be 'the worst possible opening move.'"

I disagree, it very easily could be the worst. White pushes towards the kingside, but then lines up his pieces for the queenside. What's worse is that neither really makes it through unless black messes up. The g-pawn is the wrong one to push for an attack and black can just close things off. In fact, white's pieces have trouble breaking through the closed-ness too.

The other option is the more open Fritz Gambit (1. g4 d5 2. Bg2 Bxg4). For white to win this, he's basically just hoping to catch black in a trap.

This wouldn't all be so bad if white didn't open up his kingside to be attacked. Black has an easy target that white has difficulty defending.

Here's a nice game with annotations: -> www.chessgames.com
bucklehead 274 ( +1 | -1 )
An early draft of something I've been working on: The Problem

1.
Arin Hellstroem was an obsessive man, to say the least. This trait had served him well in some endeavors, and in fact had made him fantastically wealthy. But the complication was that, once his mind got wrapped around a problem, it wouldn't let go until it found a solution.
This precipitated a revolution in Arin's life when he began pondering an ancient conundrum. The Problem had long ago lost its allure, and most had given up searching for a solution, choosing instead to focus on practical matters of greater current interest. But one day it came to Arin that the fundamental stumbling block was that all prior researchers had simply lacked the necessary willpower.
So he began the construction of a massive computational laboratory, situated deep beneath the surface of a lonely but particularly stable asteroid. He equipped it with the absolute best in processing technology and stasis fields--for he was determined to be there at the moment of the discovery, no matter how long that might take. He christened the computer "Bobby," started it on its way, and settled himself down for a long sleep.

2.
Beep.
Arin's eyes began blinking slowly, heavily.
"I wish you would try to wake a little faster," Bobby noted with a touch of impatience.
"So," Arin began slowly, "How long has it been this time?" He'd been getting up for a minute or two every few million years, ever since the figures began heading in an alarming direction.
Bobby paused. "Does it matter?"
Arin shrugged and agreed that it didn't.
"I have good news, and bad news, and terrible news. Which would you like to hear first?"
"I'll shoot for the middle. Give me the bad."
"About 141 million years ago, this asteroid developed a slight eccentricity in its orbit. It was beyond my power to correct, and human civilization had long since collapsed, so I let it be. But it means that in approximately eight minutes, we'll fall into the sun's corona and disintegrate."
Arin dashed to the control panel and found Bobby's estimates to be entirely correct. The last operational visual scanner showed a glaring, ruddy field of view before failing. "The good news," Arin muttered unhopefully, "had better be pretty damn good."
"It is," said Bobby, "I've found a solution meeting your parameters."
This was indeed good news, and Arin's heart leapt at the thought of hearing it. He strode proudly over to the stasis cabinet, opened it, and poured himself a deep glass of whiskey.
"Not a moment too soon, apparently," said Arin. He downed the glass. "Let's have it."
"Well, you see, that's the terrible news." Bobby seemed to be stammering slightly, insofar as it is possible for a computer to stammer. "It seems that the Grob is a forced win for white."
The asteroid boiled away.

ganstaman 10 ( +1 | -1 )
That was great. How could I even argue with Bobby anyway? :-)

Is there more?
ionadowman 7 ( +1 | -1 )
Great yarn, bucklehead... ... in the tradition, dare I suggest, of Isaac Asimov himself!
Cheers,
Ion
ccmcacollister 14 ( +1 | -1 )
Too Late! Weaver Adams already Found a forced win for White with 1.e4 ~ !
Again it seems the Grob must, dare I say ... Take a sideline !?!
}8-)
ccmcacollister 50 ( +1 | -1 )
And here is proof! Besides being the source of a Fischer game you may not have in your collection ...
Fischer-Dondis
Which plays one of Weavers "White to Play and Win" (Yes, there were several, and a big Chess Life analytical sparring match with GM Larry Evans about it. But hey, there's always another line for WT to Play and Win with, Ya?)
-> www.masschess.org

Um, disregard the part here about 0-1, okay?!