The English Language

A section to discuss matters not related to Chess in particular.
PeterTurland
Posts: 541
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 10:03 pm
Location: Leicester
Contact:

Re: lack of

Post by PeterTurland » Sun Apr 13, 2014 8:06 pm

soheil_hooshdaran wrote:Hello.
What does the following terms mean?
lack of space
lack of development
lack of mobility

Do they mean complete lack of, or not having enough of something? Is there a more relaxed version of these expressions?

Thanks in advance
Try lack of imagination.

Please try to imagine an economy that operated from the principle of resource management, instead of a system where, a private company prints most of the world's currency, this fountain of wealth is called De La Rue, the magic of the system is, we do not have to worry how to pay them for this fantastic resource, the magic is, they have the ability to print their own wages!

Arshad Ali
Posts: 704
Joined: Mon Feb 22, 2010 12:27 pm

Re: lack of

Post by Arshad Ali » Sun Apr 13, 2014 11:27 pm

Terms used by half-witted annotators writing fluff to explain the result of a game they don't really understand.

User avatar
Michael Farthing
Posts: 1827
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2014 1:28 pm
Location: Morecambe, Europe

Re: lack of

Post by Michael Farthing » Mon Apr 14, 2014 10:13 am

soheil_hooshdaran wrote:Hello.
What does the following terms mean?
lack of space
lack of development
lack of mobility

Do they mean complete lack of, or not having enough of something? Is there a more relaxed version of these expressions?

Thanks in advance
Seeing that no one is taking this question seriously I'll have a go, reordering the questions in ease of answering:
I'm interpreting "lack of" as meaning essentially "significantly less than the other side has" and consider how each can be objectively-ish measured.

Lack of Development.
This is actually defined fairly clearly and unanimously in the literature. It obviously refers only to the opening phase of the game. Count the number of pieces (not pawns) that each side has moved and add one if a side has castled. That's a measure of development and is a useful thing to do frequently in an unfamiliar opening. The theme of many openings is to encourage the other side to spend time moving pawns or to frighten the other side's already developed pieces to new squares in order to improve relative development. Of course, moving pawns may contribute to other objectives like improving mobility or gaining space. There are also occasions when the ideal development position for a piece is its home square and of course developing a piece to an inappropriate square is not useful. But hey - these calculations are intended to give an initial assessment that can be fine-tuned later by other considerations.

An alternative definition (Hans Berliner) is as follows:
1 point for each piece in a good developed position (including unmoved pieces)
1 point if the king is in a safe position (sometimes, but not necessarily castled)
1 point for each of the centre two pawns moved from its initial square
1 point for each rook on an open file or a file where its own pawn has reached the 5th rank.
1 extra point for a knight if it is safely in the centre.
This tries to address some of the caveats given under the 'classical' method described above, but is a lot more complicated and involves making a host of other value judgements before starting on the calculation. As will be clear, I prefer the rule of thumb approach.

Lack of Space
When this phrase is used it is probably usually touchy-feely, but an objective measure is possible, though somewhat tedious to calculate. For example, you could count the number of squares each side controls. Control of a square is not about whether there is anything on it or not. One definition in use: a square is controlled by a side if that side has a pawn defending it and the other side does not, or if neither side has a pawn defending it then it is controlled if one side can safely place a minor piece there and the other side can not. [Note: this a theoretical piece. If in fact no minor piece can actually get to the square at the current moment this does not alter control of the square]. This is not entirely satisfactory because centre squares are a lot more useful to control and therefore a more sophisticated system would allocate more points for the centre. These sorts of calculations get done by some software when assessing positions, but most players stick to the touchy-feely.

Lack of Mobility.
As far as I'm aware there's not a clear definition for a measure of mobility. I offer two:
a) How many of your pieces can be safely moved to another square?
b) How many safe piece moves are there on the board?
If there's a big difference between the scores for the two sides it is probably an indication that the side with less mobility can initiate very little and must sit back and withstand a siege. On the whole it strikes me this is the least useful question to ask: if you are developed and have space you probably have mobility anyway.

These measures are for rough guidance and results from the three categories cannot just be added together. Computers, if they try to measure these things, have to do so and so the programmer has to develop a method of combining the measures, but human brains don't have the time for that.

Roger de Coverly
Posts: 18188
Joined: Tue Apr 15, 2008 2:51 pm

Re: lack of

Post by Roger de Coverly » Mon Apr 14, 2014 10:44 am

Michael Farthing wrote: Lack of Space
When this phrase is used it is probably usually touchy-feely, but an objective measure is possible, though somewhat tedious to calculate.
Positions arise in the Hedgehog and similar systems where White has the first four ranks, the next one is empty and Black has the last three. This leaves Black with a lack of space by any definition, but games of the last forty years have demonstrated the resilience of the Black position.

User avatar
Michael Farthing
Posts: 1827
Joined: Fri Apr 04, 2014 1:28 pm
Location: Morecambe, Europe

Re: lack of

Post by Michael Farthing » Mon Apr 14, 2014 11:09 am

Roger de Coverly wrote:
Positions arise in the Hedgehog and similar systems where White has the first four ranks, the next one is empty and Black has the last three. This leaves Black with a lack of space by any definition, but games of the last forty years have demonstrated the resilience of the Black position.
Indeed, which is why rules are for guidance only and chess remains a fascinating and unsolved problem. I hope it always will so remain!

John McKenna
Posts: 3722
Joined: Tue May 17, 2011 2:02 pm

Re: lack of

Post by John McKenna » Mon Apr 14, 2014 2:06 pm

What does 'relaxed' mean in - "Is there a more relaxed version of these expressions?"
To find a for(u)m that accommodates the mess, that is the task of the artist now. (Samuel Beckett)

Colin S Crouch
Posts: 163
Joined: Sat Nov 10, 2012 8:37 pm

Re: lack of

Post by Colin S Crouch » Mon Apr 14, 2014 3:10 pm

A partial answer:

Lack of mobility is if one's pieces are blocked by one's own pawns or pieces
Lack of space is if one's pieces are blocked by the opponent's pieces and pawns - which usually means that the opponent's pieces are better developed!

Lack of development quite often means that a player has moved a piece an unnecessary number of times. It is common for juniors starting off, for example, to play a knight move early on, with for example Nf3, but then just plays another knight move for no particular reason. Maybe White tries Ng5, then Black plays ...h6, and then White has to retreat with Nf3, losing two tempi.

Perhaps loss of tempo is the next lesson?

John McKenna
Posts: 3722
Joined: Tue May 17, 2011 2:02 pm

Re: lack of

Post by John McKenna » Mon Apr 14, 2014 9:18 pm

John McKenna wrote:What does 'relaxed' mean in - "Is there a more relaxed version of these expressions?"
What do the following terms mean?

lack of space - cramped
lack of development - backward
lack of mobility - confined

Is it more, or less, relaxing to use the words cramped, backward and confined?
To find a for(u)m that accommodates the mess, that is the task of the artist now. (Samuel Beckett)

soheil_hooshdaran
Posts: 2813
Joined: Tue Nov 05, 2013 5:24 pm

Re: little

Post by soheil_hooshdaran » Mon Apr 21, 2014 7:58 am

Does it refer to the size, the importance, or what?

Andrew Martin
Posts: 755
Joined: Sun Feb 12, 2012 4:37 pm

Re: little

Post by Andrew Martin » Mon Apr 21, 2014 8:46 am

It means fake profile; a general taking of the piss.

Sean Hewitt
Posts: 2190
Joined: Sat Mar 10, 2012 8:18 pm
Contact:

Re: little

Post by Sean Hewitt » Mon Apr 21, 2014 9:43 am

Andrew Martin wrote:It means fake profile; a general taking of the piss.
Perhaps not. His FIDE record and his linked in profile which shows that he does tranlation work.
Last edited by Sean Hewitt on Mon Apr 21, 2014 9:45 am, edited 1 time in total.

soheil_hooshdaran
Posts: 2813
Joined: Tue Nov 05, 2013 5:24 pm

Re: little

Post by soheil_hooshdaran » Mon Apr 21, 2014 9:44 am

Sorry IM Martin, I didn't get you.whose profile is fake?

PeterTurland
Posts: 541
Joined: Sat Dec 01, 2007 10:03 pm
Location: Leicester
Contact:

Re: little

Post by PeterTurland » Mon Apr 21, 2014 10:29 am

soheil_hooshdaran wrote:Hi.
What does 'little' mean in:
Clearly the weakest man on the board. the little pawn may seem unimportant. (from Play Winning Chess)

?Thanks in advance
In English (as I should imagine, as are many other languages) we usually have two forms of speech, a literal meaning and a metaphorical meaning.

Some metaphorical meanings are incomprehensible to people from other cultures, because understanding the more subtle meanings, entails having a detailed knowledge of the countries history and culture.

There is a beautiful Startrek episode from the Next Generation series called Darmok, you can see some of it here. Which demonstrates the principle.

I think metaphors are used to give an emotional spin to what the person is trying to say.
Last edited by PeterTurland on Tue Apr 22, 2014 5:55 pm, edited 1 time in total.

soheil_hooshdaran
Posts: 2813
Joined: Tue Nov 05, 2013 5:24 pm

Re: little

Post by soheil_hooshdaran » Mon Apr 21, 2014 1:14 pm

I can't access the Youtube website from within Iran.

Andy Stoker
Posts: 226
Joined: Sun Jan 26, 2014 9:23 pm

Re: little

Post by Andy Stoker » Mon Apr 21, 2014 2:21 pm

Small in this context also has the sense of humble ... "the small man" ... it's also the smallest piece ("man") on the board but in this context it is making the point that what is normally relatively weak, can have unusual strength (I haven't tried to see the source in context, but it feels like it's leading up to an example where the pawn is relatively strong)

Post Reply