A Better Move - Blog

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Dan O'Dowd
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A Better Move - Blog

Postby Dan O'Dowd » Fri Jun 21, 2013 9:39 pm

Hello all,

Following a suggestion by Jonathan Bryant, I've started a blog! First proper chess post will come later tonight. Address is http://abettermove.blogspot.co.uk/

Dan O'Dowd
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Dan O'Dowd » Fri Jun 21, 2013 10:54 pm

And in fact the first chess post is now on there. Enjoy!

Matt Fletcher
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Matt Fletcher » Fri Jun 21, 2013 11:38 pm

Well done Dan - something I've always been meaning to get around to but never quite managed! It's quite an interesting game you posted - I've put a comment up.

Geoff Chandler
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Geoff Chandler » Fri Jun 21, 2013 11:58 pm

I could not read it without having to scroll right then back again.
I gave up.

OK I've got crap kit but in my computer programming days I was taught you must
never assume the other guy has the same top kit as yourself and program accordinlgy.

A bit of line breaking with a space in between the paragraphs would have worked.
(Is there a way one can get rid of that frame on the left hand side. then it will fit.)

Also you have to have a PGN thingy thing. These things are a must have for any site these days.

As for writing on chess.
Same method as above, I try to write for my weakest reader.
But you will find you own level.

The good news is you are up and running. (add a picture of yourself.)
Looking at your games with critical with a view of sharing it with the rest of the world
will do you a lot of good.
And it helps you in mid game. I often recall thinking during a game.

'This is good Geoff, don't chuck it, find the neat wrap up, this is one for the magazine."

You have new inspiration.

Good Luck and don't let it lag.

Roger de Coverly
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Roger de Coverly » Sat Jun 22, 2013 12:23 am

I think you need "anon" as a reply option, for those who don't want to set up profiles on any number of sites.

Commenting here on what might have better been said on the blog, I checked why .. f5 wasn't more popular in what is after all a mainstream Petroff position. It would appear that just 0-0 is best followed by the usual idea of c4.

Dan O'Dowd
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Dan O'Dowd » Sat Jun 22, 2013 1:27 am

Geoff Chandler wrote:I could not read it without having to scroll right then back again.
I gave up.

OK I've got crap kit but in my computer programming days I was taught you must
never assume the other guy has the same top kit as yourself and program accordinlgy.

A bit of line breaking with a space in between the paragraphs would have worked.
(Is there a way one can get rid of that frame on the left hand side. then it will fit.)

Also you have to have a PGN thingy thing. These things are a must have for any site these days.

As for writing on chess.
Same method as above, I try to write for my weakest reader.
But you will find you own level.

The good news is you are up and running. (add a picture of yourself.)
Looking at your games with critical with a view of sharing it with the rest of the world
will do you a lot of good.
And it helps you in mid game. I often recall thinking during a game.

'This is good Geoff, don't chuck it, find the neat wrap up, this is one for the magazine."

You have new inspiration.

Good Luck and don't let it lag.



Hey Geoff :) Great to get some advice. I've removed the sidebar to below the posts, and shrunk the width a little though that'll always be a guess because of people's screen res. There is also a picture now but try not to shriek :P I'll add a PGN of the game in a few days and start thereon with other things I add - it'll be a bit fiddly and in the meantime there are lots of diagrams. It's a good point you mention about level - I suppose I didn't imagine a target readership, though with the comments on my youtube videos (youtube.com/user/abettermove) the range is from lower club players and up, so I'll endeavour to put a range of material on the blog. I'm astonished by how fiddly Blogger is, actually - though once it gets going it's not so bad.

Geoff Chandler
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Geoff Chandler » Sat Jun 22, 2013 2:18 am

That's better.

(take down the picture, I did not realise how ugly you were, I'll send you one me) :wink:

If you have done YouTube vids and had a good response then a bigger highlight.

Name them and a link to each one. Never miss an excuse for a link.

Here is one of my vids.

(I'll post it when I find it......keep a note of your links.)

Here it is. The truth about the Morphy Game:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=y7abOJqphn0

Don't know about how fiddly Blogs are - never done one.
In the past I just supply the test/pics/cartoons/games and up it goes.

The column I do for RHP (it's not really a blog,I call it a blog but I get paid for it.)
is in WYSISYG format. Very easy only a few adjustments needed.

So off you go and have fun.

A tip? OK.

Tip1:
I come from the old pre-computer school so have always shyed away from long analysis.
"If it's long it's wrong." was the war cry.

These days a box can weed out the tactical errors but you have to remember a lot
of readers cannot carry a game in their head. So keep them light.
On RHP if I decide that a line needs showing I will use another PGN thingy to show it
rather than give a line of moves that will mean nothing to the majority.

Tip 2:
Pics of you playing, especially if you can get one of you playing the game you are noting up.
Always carry a camera, you will be surprise now you are in the media how often you regret not carrying one.
No family pet pictures.

Tip 3:
Don't listen to people giving you tips, do your own thing....experiment.

AustinElliott
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby AustinElliott » Sat Jun 22, 2013 11:30 am

Don't I recall the no-longer-blogging Mr Giddens moving his blog across to Blogspot because it had native pgn support? Which would suggest if Dan puts pgn files in his blogposts between the [in square brackets] pgn and /pgn tags, like we do on here, he should get proper game display without having to add any plugins...?

Good luck with the blog, Dan, BTW. I did start something similar with a chess 'page' on my (mostly science-related) blog, but I didn't have the drive to keep it going.

Jonathan Bryant
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Jonathan Bryant » Sat Jun 22, 2013 5:05 pm

Dan O'Dowd wrote:Following a suggestion by Jonathan Bryant, I've started a blog!


Well this is the first recorded instance of anybody listening to anything I say. Good luck!




AustinElliott wrote:Which would suggest if Dan puts pgn files in his blogposts between the [in square brackets] pgn and /pgn tags, like we do on here, he should get proper game display without having to add any plugins...?



Doesn't work like that in blogger for me. More's the pity.

John Upham
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby John Upham » Sat Jun 22, 2013 5:42 pm

Geoff Chandler wrote:Tip 2:
No family pet pictures.


Would you make an exception for tortoises and slugs?

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Christopher Kreuzer
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Christopher Kreuzer » Sat Jun 22, 2013 6:48 pm

Good luck from me as well, Dan. I find blogs where people analyse their own games fascinating, though there aren't that many of them around, actually. I was reading one like that the other day (I won't name it without asking the blogger in question first), and the thing that amazed me most was how long some people manage to keep blogs like that going. I've considered it, but coming up with a regular supply of material is difficult, something the S&B blog seems to manage by having several people contribute together. Having the time available to write something regularly is another matter. And time to read them as well! An edited highlight of blogs (and other online publications) for those with not enough time to read all of them? I wonder...

AustinElliott
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby AustinElliott » Sat Jun 22, 2013 9:51 pm

Christopher Kreuzer wrote: -snip - coming up with a regular supply of material [for chess blogs] is difficult, something the S&B blog seems to manage by having several people contribute together. -snip -

We've - that's Chorlton Chess Club in South Manchester - taken to using a Facebook group/page for 'club news and stuff', which does sometimes extend to games/positions/problems. It seems to generate a lot more commentary/discussion than the blog we previously had did, though it has the disadvantage that only people on Fb see and use it (you have to be on Fb and join the group to post comments). Of course, the discussion is very much club/Gt M'cr chess scene-oriented, though it does cover other stuff too.

An interesting aspect is that quite a few players from other Manchester area clubs have joined the Fb group. If anyone is interested in taking a look it can be found here.

Dan O'Dowd
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Dan O'Dowd » Sat Jun 22, 2013 10:54 pm

Christopher Kreuzer wrote:Good luck from me as well, Dan. I find blogs where people analyse their own games fascinating, though there aren't that many of them around, actually. I was reading one like that the other day (I won't name it without asking the blogger in question first), and the thing that amazed me most was how long some people manage to keep blogs like that going. I've considered it, but coming up with a regular supply of material is difficult, something the S&B blog seems to manage by having several people contribute together. Having the time available to write something regularly is another matter. And time to read them as well! An edited highlight of blogs (and other online publications) for those with not enough time to read all of them? I wonder...


Thanks to all for your support! :) I've decided to go with differing approaches for game presentation depending on whether it is a small-comments/variations game, or a tactical beast. That way I can ensure enough diagrams/separate board-with-moves sections if necessary, and if required I can also use the chess.com pgn widget, and that way someone could easily copy paste the whole thing to their computer.

I'm also lucky that last summer as prep for the British I played a long series of G60 games online many of which were high quality and also interesting to look at, so I'll start boshing those up right away. I had about 1200 games on cube before that most of which were G30 (but I had some 90+30s a move back when that was an option) and I can lump a few of those together or find motifs within. The best part of this is that instead of struggling to get a video done on games, I can immediately post them after I finish, and if I do deeper annotations I can redux them in correction posts later. So it will take a while before there's anything deeply annotated but what is there will be plenty for now. :)

I've reduced the width markedly on the page - it looks ugly given the lack of widgets either side but hopefully that solves the problems mentioned. As for pets, I have none - my ugly mug stays :P

There will be a new game on the blog tonight :)

Dan O'Dowd
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Dan O'Dowd » Sun Jun 23, 2013 1:54 am


Jonathan Bryant
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Re: A Better Move - Blog

Postby Jonathan Bryant » Sun Jun 23, 2013 8:28 am

Christopher Kreuzer wrote:... coming up with a regular supply of material is difficult ....


This isn't really true, although it my seem like it before you get going. After all, if you think about it you just came up with at least three posts on the general chess forum (the puzzle; the solution; the question of why ...g6 got more interest than ... g5).

We currently have four regular writers and at least four other guys who are part of the team in various ways. On top of that we also get helped out along the way from time to time. Matt Fletcher of this parish has been very generous with his time recently, for example

I wouldn't say the benefit of that is coming up with new ideas - although it does help with giving us a wider range of subject matter than we'd otherwise have (if it was left to me there couldn't be any of the Chess in Art that Martin does so well, for example).

The real benefit of blogging as part of a group is not being able to come up with enough material, it's keeping the thing going when you're busy with other things, or getting a bit fed up because you think nobody's reading or what have you.

It's difficult to blog on your own, but not impossible. A friend of my runs a very successful theatre reviews blog on his own. And blogging as a group does cost you a 'coordination' overhead that you don't get as a solo blogger.


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