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7:50am 09-19-2014
Excellent and informative website! Thank you for the free e-book.
Replied on: 11:47am 09-20-2014

No worries Michael. Thanks for the appreciation!

I should note that I have been more recently writing on:

9:19pm 07-20-2012
Hi, your site helps me a lot about chess, the information you shared thicken my shield whenever chess discussions arise in my work, at the club and even to my 14 yr old chessplayer son.
One thing though seemed you missed out is about chess arbitration and how to become a FIDE chess arbiter?
Do you have some material that address this issues?
My goal is to become a chess arbiter (FIDE accredited) in the near future. Locally I am a club arbiter, attended arbitration seminar but still I need to arm myself the prerequisites to become an International arbiter.
Any material to supplement my studies is very much welcome!

Replied on: 5:42pm 07-22-2012

Thanks Allan. Apart from knowing most of the official rules for chess through my own tournament play, I don't know too much about chess arbitrating or the accreditation process. That being said, I will try to look into it and materialise an article.

8:19am 05-06-2012
Colin Fibiger
Firstly thanks for a great site - I love just browsing through and learning.

My 10 year old sons started playing chess a couple of years back and is progressing well - made the provincial side last year.

As a parent, I play only a moderate game and would like to assist him as much as possible. To this end, I have obviously looked at software options (and all the top players around are throwing recommendations our way. Most however do not speak plain English and leave me only more confused than before.

I have looked through your articles on best engines etc and have got a better idea of what I am supposed to be looking at but am still a little unsure and hesitatant. In addition to helping my own son, I would like to be able to assist the many other parents out there in the same position.

Generally, your articles assume I know how an engine fits in with a interface etc - and I don;t :-) I know one parent who on recommendation went out and bought Rybka only to find that that was only part of the solution :-)

Could you please provide an article for newbies that tie it all together - an engine does this, a datsbase prgramme does that and an interface does this. In order for it to work, you need this PLUS that.

From there, I could get a better understanding of your recommendations and put together a package that suits me - and hopefully a package of free software as many parents are just not able to go out and spend money.

All the best
Replied on: 11:15pm 05-06-2012

Hi Colin,

Thanks for alerting me to this issue. I will try to either create a new article tying things together or make my existing articles clearer to understand.

So that you can immediately take action, here's a brief overview:

Only two things are required to have a complete chess package:
1. The engine
2. An interface (the interface includes sufficient database capabilities in almost all cases)

There are commercial software packages that provide a complete solution. For example, the 'Fritz' series of programs from and the 'Aquarium' series of programs from

Generally those consumers that purchase an engine alone already have a 'complete solution' and just want to add a new engine to their interface rather than buying an entirely new version of the interface (which is often more expensive).

If you're looking for a free solution, SCID is a good option. It is an interface that includes database capabilities. I discuss this more in my Free Chess Programs article:

While SCID comes bundled with some engines, you may be able to find stronger programs on the internet and then use them in SCID. For example, your friend who bought Rybka without an interface can use SCID as the interface. Another good choice is the free version of Houdini, which I also discuss in my Free Chess Programs article.

On a related note, I have been working on a side website specifically aimed at beginners. One article on there is particularly relevant to this issue: I should note, however, that you may have trouble 'importing' an engine such as Rybka or Houdini into Chessmaster. But overall, this should not matter since the bundled Chessmaster engine is already astronomically srtong.

GP Chess.

7:10pm 01-01-2012
Congratulations on an excellent site!!! It is certainly up there with the best.

Can you advise on how powerful a computer is required with the best chess engines, eg Houdini, Deep Rybka? I'm wondering whether I should upgrade my computer to avoid waiting around while the computer calculates. Or is that not a problem with any half-way decent computer?

I have a Pentium dual-core T4300 2.1 Ghz with 4 GB of RAM.

I don't have a chess program at the moment but am looking. Any latest advice on options (especially free) would be appreciated. I'm a fairly strong club player.

All the best,
Replied on: 12:01pm 01-02-2012

Hi Alan,

Thanks for your kind comments.

Running Houdini and Deep Rybka should not be a problem on a half-decent computer. Judging by your specs, there should be no problems. I run Houdini on a Fritz GUI interface on a laptop with considerably worse specs than yours and it never freezes or has any problems. It sees tactics and positional nuances virtually instantaneously in most situations.

Regarding your choice of chess software, I've got a page dedicated to free chess programs.

Zarkon Fischer also has a great website dedicated to the same purpose, although sadly it is no longer updated.

If you do have some money to spare though, I would recommend purchasing the Fritz GUI from ChessBase. (Any of the programs from such as Rybka, Shredder or Junior automatically come bundled with the Fritz GUI.) In addition, Chessmaster: Grandmaster Edition has an excellent series of lectures from International Master Joshua Waitzkin (among others), which I think is well worth the price.

GP Chess.

5:48pm 09-19-2011
I've a very promising 11 years old son, I'm wondering what is the Curriculum you suggest for him. by the way he is club player, a FIDE rated "1650" and he started to play chess 25 month ago.
Replied on: 10:58am 09-22-2011

Hi Fawzy, I recommended a three-pronged curriculum in my ebook Improve Your Chess. Your son is still young, so he should play in club tournaments quite frequently.

I strongly recommend using chess software such as ChessBase or Fritz to analyse one's games. Chessmaster also has a lot of great audio instruction for players around your son's level. Here are some opening suggestions. If your son has a lot of time to dedicate to chess, he should play the main lines or consider the second repertoire listed in the article.

Kind regards,

3:03am 09-14-2011
One of the best chess websites on the internet, maybe the best! Excellent! Good luck with your chess!
Replied on: 9:50am 09-15-2011

Thank you for your kind words!

11:53pm 04-04-2011
Willemien Stoop
Can I use the material from your website for a chess notation book for profit?
Replied on: 10:13pm 04-05-2011

Sorry, I do not approve of this. I'm sure you can come up with your own material. My English isn't that great anyway

4:40am 03-08-2011
Tony Evans
Hi GeniusProphecy:
I am a big fan of yours and would like to know the best way to improve my chess game. I learned to play years ago and still play like a beginner. You recommend studying the endgame. My question is do I study on a computer or study endgames on a physical board with pieces to improve OTB play. I want to prepare for tournament competition and since you have the experience, I wanted to get your imput on how to prepare. Your advise and suggestion is appreciated. tevans2737
Replied on: 9:02pm 03-08-2011

Thanks for your question tevans2737. I don't think there's anything wrong with playing over things on your computer with software such as ChessBase. You should buy a decent endgame book such as Silman's Complete Endgame Course by IM Jeremy Silman and manually enter in the moves onto your computer board. Alternatively, you can obtain one of the great endgame DVDs by Karsten Mueller.

Regarding preparing before a tournament starts, I think playing some 5-minute blitz games on the internet will help adjust your mind for 'battle mode'. Getting some blitz practice will help sharpen your tactical skills and may also uncover leaks in your opening repertoire which you should address. Preparing for specific opponents during a tournament is a much more concrete process. This I discuss in my "Preparing for Opponents" article

Yours sincerely,

10:18pm 03-07-2011
Anthony Schleizer
Stumbled upon your site. Very nice.
Replied on: 8:52pm 03-08-2011

Thanks Anthony!

12:59am 09-14-2010
Misha Pak
Nice one...
BTW, did you ever try to play Go?

Misha Pak.
Replied on: 12:17pm 09-14-2010

Thanks. I have certainly seen Go before but I have never tried playing it.

2:25pm 09-12-2010
David Lawless
A very interesting site! Perhaps your readers would also benefit from a link to my new site I forewarn you though - do not start to look at it unless you have some time on your hands!
Replied on: 9:32am 09-13-2010

Thanks for your suggestion. I have heard of your site before when Dennis Monokroussos mentioned it.

7:50am 07-31-2010
Frank L. Burns
Terrific site! I got lucky and stumbled across it. Although I am a chess hack I am hopelessly lost in this game.
Replied on: 12:06pm 07-31-2010

Cheers, thanks for the comments.

4:48am 06-03-2010
Chessfriends! Welcome in Gladiators Chess for download games base, opening book, see chess news, etc.
7:55am 05-31-2010
Great website.
7:12am 05-15-2010
Mario S Guimaraes
Hi friend,

Your site is great! Thank you!

Best wishes from Brasil.
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