Monday, July 04, 2005

Target Scan Training

When I saw the nice rake of Temposchlucker I thought to myself, this is what I need: Pull a rake over the crowded board and collect the targets. Well, there are many targets, but not all can be attacked at once. So my job must be to create a filter. As a first step I decided to concentrate on pieces, leaving pawns behind at the moment. A piece is a target when it is vulnerable. To keep it simple, I define primary targets as follows: A loose piece; a piece that is attacked by as many pieces as defend it; a piece defended only by a King or Queen; a piece defended only by an overworked piece (that has to defend another piece, a pawn or an important square). A piece attacked by 2 pieces and defended by 1 pawn is not a target in this sense, but the defending pawn is hanging; this is a different story.

So, after some experiments, I came to this Target Scan Training, part 1 (pieces): Go through a game with the computer. Count the target pieces. At the beginning, it is the 4 rooks. After every ply check what has changed in the position. If one more target piece emerges, count it. If one disappears, take note of it, but do not count backward. Proceed with this until the endgame begins. Write down the target count. Take the next game. Have a stop watch run. Take total of target counts and time, calculate the time needed for one target.

In my games of today there was roughly one new target with every 2 or 3 plies.

Board Vision Day 20
348 targets scanned, 9.6 seconds/target


At 6:08 PM, Blogger Temposchlucker said...

Good idea!

a piece defended only by a King or Queen

At the beginning, it is the 4 rooks

Given your definition, the 4 bishops are a target too in the beginposition.

At 10:24 AM, Blogger Mousetrapper said...

Of course you are right, Tempo. But in this case I make an exception, because bishops move quite soon in the opening, whereas rooks stay longer at their places. Just remember that a Queen on h2, supported by a pawn, wins against the lone Rook on h1. There is quite a number of games lost because of the loose rooks. This is why I count them.

At 9:26 PM, Blogger King of the Spill said...

I think that you bring up an excellent point; pieces that are equally attacked and defended are quite similar to a hanging piece.

Similar, but usually much trickier, especially for the defending side.


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