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Old August 23rd 04, 09:34 PM
Brandon
 
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Default The "Quaker Chess Challenge": an online "puzzle" of sorts

I've posted a rather odd "Chess quandary" on the Web, and I wonder if
anyone would care to share their thoughts on it. Particularly, if
anyone knows how to set up Fritz, Junior, or Shredder to play against
one of its internal engines from this setup, it would be appreciated.
But your thoughts need not touch on computer chess at all:

http://www.100bestwebsites.org/quakerchess.htm

More about this "puzzle":

I was recently considering the question: could we position the Chess
pieces at the beginning of the game in an alternate but symmetric way
that would give Black the best chances of an even game with White
(since the conventional setup does seem to give White some advantage)?

This resulted in another question: is there a way of positioning the
pieces symmetrically that would discourage either player from
capturing or moving aggressively? Such an arrangement would
(typically) lead to a draw, since the first player to become the
aggressor would be at an immediate disadvantage.

I believe I have found such an initial setup. I have referred to this
setup as "Quaker Chess", given the historically non-aggressive nature
of most Quakers. The setup is (I find) elegant & aesthetically
pleasing. It is shown at the site above.

Thanks in advance for your thoughts on this. We are also discussing
this "puzzle" on this bulletin board, if you would care to join in
over the

http://www.chessgames.com/perl/chessplayer?pid=70670

Brett
http://www.100bestwebsites.org/
"The best sites on the Web, all in one place!"
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Old August 26th 04, 06:12 PM
Abishek K
 
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Default

I am able to understand the intution behind such a construction.
however, did you consider that Nb3 for instance, could lead white
having an advantage while attacking the two pawns of black. Also, it
is clearly not always true that material loss is disadvantageous. So
, I think, a game like chess can never be made passive.
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Old August 27th 04, 03:02 PM
Brandon
 
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Hi Abishek:

Thank you for your reply.

I wonder, did you perhaps mean Nf3?

If that was your meaning, it attacks two of black's four base pawns.

Of course, if black is in the mood for a draw, s/he can then play Nd7.
This ensures that all four base pawns are defended. At this point,
it appears to me, if white wants to break the pawn wall, s/he either
has to sacrifice a Knight for a pawn (with no obvious positional
compensation), start pushing pawns forward (to their doom), or capture
one of the lead pawns with a piece (thereby losing the piece).

I guess the question is, can any of these lead to a positional
advantage, or at least to an equal game?

Any ideas you have are welcome.

DBR

Abishek K abishek @meenakshi.cs.iitm.ernet.in wrote in message ...
I am able to understand the intution behind such a construction.
however, did you consider that Nb3 for instance, could lead white
having an advantage while attacking the two pawns of black. Also, it
is clearly not always true that material loss is disadvantageous. So
, I think, a game like chess can never be made passive.

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Old August 30th 04, 02:51 PM
Abishek K
 
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Default

well, I didn't mean Nf3. Actually what I meant was, consider the fact
that a Knight in b3 would be attacking the pawns in a5 and c5 and a
knight in d3 would do the same to c5. So well, though the pawn wall
seems impenetrable, still, there may be some ways to attack, and also
one could concentrate his forces at some square albeit
being behind the pawn wall and then make sacrifices. There are so many
possibilities to the game that we cannot expect (in the human context)
for one player not to go for an attack. For all that we know, even the
canonical position may be forced draw.

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