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Old May 27th 07, 05:40 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

ChessBase for example?

This new, forthcoming, Grandmaster -- does anyone have details on it?

DSH



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Old May 27th 07, 06:05 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

On May 27, 9:40 am, "D. Spencer Hines" wrote:
Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

ChessBase for example?

This new, forthcoming, Grandmaster -- does anyone have details on it?

DSH


You're going to have to define "better" in terms of what you're
looking for and, most importantly, how strong a chess player you
already are. If you are a Class C USCF player or lower (1600 rating)
then I would say that Chessmaster is definitely your best choice for
improving your game, primarily due to the huge amount of tutorial
content.

If you're Class B or higher, then one of the ChessBase programs are
probably going to be better suited to you (Fritz and Shredder are the
two most popular), coupled with a full-featured database
(Chessmaster's weakest feature, IMHO).

Of course, this assumes that you are primarily going to be using only
ONE chess program. Personally, if I was serious about chess and trying
to improve, I'd at least have Chessmaster, Fritz and ChessBase.

jm

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Old May 27th 07, 06:20 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

I'm particularly interested in studying historical games.

I like the 3D chessboards in Chessmaster -- but I'd prefer a much smoother
and more sophisticated interface, with better looking chess pieces in higher
resolution -- as well as getting rid of this ridiculous convention of only
using small fonts and no ClearType, unless you want all the fonts to be in
magenta.

10,000 historical games, extensively annotated, analyzed and discussed,
would be something I'd appreciate.

DSH

wrote in message
oups.com...

On May 27, 9:40 am, "D. Spencer Hines" wrote:


Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

ChessBase for example?

This new, forthcoming, Grandmaster -- does anyone have details on it?

DSH


You're going to have to define "better" in terms of what you're
looking for and, most importantly, how strong a chess player you
already are. If you are a Class C USCF player or lower (1600 rating)
then I would say that Chessmaster is definitely your best choice for
improving your game, primarily due to the huge amount of tutorial
content.

If you're Class B or higher, then one of the ChessBase programs are
probably going to be better suited to you (Fritz and Shredder are the
two most popular), coupled with a full-featured database
(Chessmaster's weakest feature, IMHO).

Of course, this assumes that you are primarily going to be using only
ONE chess program. Personally, if I was serious about chess and trying
to improve, I'd at least have Chessmaster, Fritz and ChessBase.

jm



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Old May 27th 07, 06:42 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

On May 27, 10:20 am, "D. Spencer Hines" wrote:
I'm particularly interested in studying historical games.

I like the 3D chessboards in Chessmaster -- but I'd prefer a much smoother
and more sophisticated interface, with better looking chess pieces in higher
resolution -- as well as getting rid of this ridiculous convention of only
using small fonts and no ClearType, unless you want all the fonts to be in
magenta.

10,000 historical games, extensively annotated, analyzed and discussed,
would be something I'd appreciate.

DSH


Chessmaster has about 800-900 GM annotated classic games in the
Library, plus another few dozen audio annotated games. AFAIK, that is
more than you'll get in any other chess program. The quality of the
text-annotated games in CM, in terms of the number of moves that are
annotated, is spotty. But they're all annotated by GMs.

To actually find "10,000 historical games, extensively annotated,
analyzed and discussed", you'd have to search far and wide. Most chess
databases just provide the games without annotations. I would also
question anybody's belief that they could truly "study" that many
games.

And the ClearType and Small Fonts issues in CM aren't "conventions";
they are simply shortcomings (or bugs, if you prefer) in the GUI. The
Small Fonts issue was fixed in CM10, but I don't know about the
ClearType issue.

jm

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Old May 27th 07, 06:47 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

It really depends on what you are trying to do...

There are several different "families" or packages of chess software.

There is chessbase, shredder, chess assistant, chessmaster, arena, and
winboard, and shortly rybka.

Personally, I use the Fritz family. Amazon has a current screaming deal
for 19.99 for fritz 9, which makes it cheap enough to be wrong and check
it out.

The fritz family tend to work well for me, up to my limited needs for
database, and comes with a free year of playchess. And it also runs
most major engines, including Rybka (and the free one, is quite good).

There are supposedly some stability issues out of the box (I had never
run into them), but if you go to playchess after it is installed, you
should get updated past those. And I don't have refuel issues either,
which is nice, since my computer *is* a laptop.

The other thing that is nice about fritz, is that you can pretty much
copy and paste into the program pretty much anything, anyone calls a PGN
or a game, and it tends to work. (I have yet to make it fail, but it has
never been my goal). This is a great feature for looking at other
material, games of of websites, and stuff.

Playchess is also pretty good, with the only real exception is that it
is not ICC. And they are not completely replaceable. But the chess
media stuff is pretty darn good. But so is Josh in chessmaster I hear?
(I do remember the Power Queen, and I am sure that she gave me about
200 points of strength way back when). It is too bad that the education
side of the market still hasn't really taken off yet.


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Old May 27th 07, 08:07 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

wrote in message
ups.com...

On May 27, 10:20 am, "D. Spencer Hines" wrote:


I'm particularly interested in studying historical games.

I like the 3D chessboards in Chessmaster -- but I'd prefer a much
smoother
and more sophisticated interface, with better looking chess pieces in
higher
resolution -- as well as getting rid of this ridiculous convention of
only
using small fonts and no ClearType, unless you want all the fonts to be
in
magenta.

10,000 historical games, extensively annotated, analyzed and discussed,
would be something I'd appreciate.

DSH


Chessmaster has about 800-900 GM annotated classic games in the
Library, plus another few dozen audio annotated games. AFAIK, that is
more than you'll get in any other chess program. The quality of the
text-annotated games in CM, in terms of the number of moves that are
annotated, is spotty. But they're all annotated by GMs.


Yes, "spotty" indeed.

To actually find "10,000 historical games, extensively annotated,
analyzed and discussed", you'd have to search far and wide. Most chess
databases just provide the games without annotations. I would also
question anybody's belief that they could truly "study" that many
games.


I'd prefer to have ALL the games of GM's that have been recorded.

And the ClearType and Small Fonts issues in CM aren't "conventions";
they are simply shortcomings (or bugs, if you prefer) in the GUI. The
Small Fonts issue was fixed in CM10, but I don't know about the
ClearType issue.

jm


Did you write the code for CM 9000 and CM 10000?

DSH


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Old May 27th 07, 08:11 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

Very Interesting.

Thanks

DSH

Please see below.

"JohnnyT" wrote in message
. ..

It really depends on what you are trying to do...

There are several different "families" or packages of chess software.

There is chessbase, shredder, chess assistant, chessmaster, arena, and
winboard, and shortly rybka.

Personally, I use the Fritz family. Amazon has a current screaming deal
for 19.99 for fritz 9, which makes it cheap enough to be wrong and check
it out.


Intriguing.

The fritz family tend to work well for me, up to my limited needs for
database, and comes with a free year of playchess. And it also runs most
major engines, including Rybka (and the free one, is quite good).

There are supposedly some stability issues out of the box (I had never run
into them), but if you go to playchess after it is installed, you should
get updated past those. And I don't have refuel issues either, which is
nice, since my computer *is* a laptop.


"Refuel issues"?

The other thing that is nice about fritz, is that you can pretty much copy
and paste into the program pretty much anything, anyone calls a PGN or a
game, and it tends to work. (I have yet to make it fail, but it has never
been my goal). This is a great feature for looking at other material,
games of of websites, and stuff.

Playchess is also pretty good, with the only real exception is that it is
not ICC. And they are not completely replaceable. But the chess media
stuff is pretty darn good. But so is Josh in chessmaster I hear? (I do
remember the Power Queen, and I am sure that she gave me about 200 points
of strength way back when). It is too bad that the education side of the
market still hasn't really taken off yet.



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Old May 27th 07, 08:52 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

To actually find "10,000 historical games, extensively annotated,
analyzed and discussed", you'd have to search far and wide. Most chess
databases just provide the games without annotations. I would also
question anybody's belief that they could truly "study" that many
games.


I'd prefer to have ALL the games of GM's that have been recorded.


As I said, you'll have to do a lot of searching if you want the games
annotated. There are many databases (some free) that have all GM
games. We're talking about hundreds of thousands of games, though.

Did you write the code for CM 9000 and CM 10000?


A UbiSoft Romanian team did CM10 and I assume is still developing
Chessmaster, at least for the PC. I was the Software Project Manager
for CM9 and CM8. I was a Programmer for CM7, CM6 and CM5500. There
were many people involved in writing the code and compiling the
content of the Chessmaster series.

jm

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Old May 27th 07, 09:07 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Posts: 135
Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

wrote in message
oups.com...

To actually find "10,000 historical games, extensively annotated,
analyzed and discussed", you'd have to search far and wide. Most chess
databases just provide the games without annotations. I would also
question anybody's belief that they could truly "study" that many
games.


I'd prefer to have ALL the games of GM's that have been recorded.


As I said, you'll have to do a lot of searching if you want the games
annotated. There are many databases (some free) that have all GM
games. We're talking about hundreds of thousands of games, though.

Did you write the code for CM 9000 and CM 10000?


A UbiSoft Romanian team did CM10 and I assume is still developing
Chessmaster, at least for the PC. I was the Software Project Manager
for CM9 and CM8. I was a Programmer for CM7, CM6 and CM5500. There
were many people involved in writing the code and compiling the
content of the Chessmaster series.

---------------------------------------------------------------

Congratulations!

How did the "Small Fonts Only" and "No ClearType unless you can put up with
magenta fonts" decisions get made?

CM 9000 doesn't seem to be fully Windows XP friendly. XP was just too new
at the time CM 9000 was being developed? No close exchange with Microsoft?

This "Grandmaster" product -- what can we expect from it?

I'd still prefer to have the 10,000 GM games all in one well-engineered
package -- with high resolution boards and chess pieces -- plus "Special
Features" as appropriate. Is there anything like that on the market? Or am
I just an odd ball -- not even worthy of fringe market efforts?

I'd even settle for 5,000, in a pinch.

DSH


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Old May 27th 07, 09:43 PM posted to rec.games.chess.computer
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Default Are There Better Chess Software Packages Than Chessmaster 10000?

How did the "Small Fonts Only" and "No ClearType unless you can put up with
magenta fonts" decisions get made?


The Small Fonts decision was made simply because it would have been
too much work to fix it at the time it was discovered. The ClearType
issue wasn't discovered until after the program shipped. Once again,
it was decided to simply add it to the FAQ rather than take the time
to try to fix it.

CM 9000 doesn't seem to be fully Windows XP friendly. XP was just too new
at the time CM 9000 was being developed? No close exchange with Microsoft?


Very few developers of PC games have a "close exchange with
Microsoft", especially if the game is not a full-screen DirectX game.
XP had been out for quite some time before CM9000, and the game
"supports" XP in the sense that it will work for almost everybody who
has that platform. However, there are a few less-used features in XP
that CM does not handle properly, just like there are lots of video
cards from older/less well-known card makers that may not work well
with CM.

This "Grandmaster" product -- what can we expect from it?


No clue. The only thing I've heard is that there will be a new version
of the chess engine that supports multiple-processor PCs. But that
isn't confirmed.

I'd still prefer to have the 10,000 GM games all in one well-engineered
package -- with high resolution boards and chess pieces -- plus "Special
Features" as appropriate. Is there anything like that on the market? Or am
I just an odd ball -- not even worthy of fringe market efforts?


I honestly don't know. I'd check around on the ChessBase site. That
would be your best bet.

jm

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