Correspondence chess is chess or variant chess played by various forms of long-distance correspondence through a correspondence chess server, a public internet chess forum, email, or the postal system. Less common methods that have been employed include homing pigeon, it is in contrast to over-the-board chess, where the players sit at a chessboard at the same time, or play at the same time remotely. Correspondence chess allows people or clubs who are geographically distant to play one another without meeting in person; these distant relationships are just one of the many distinct appeals of correspondence chess. The length of a game played by correspondence can vary depending on the method used to transmit moves: a game played via server or by email might last no more than a few days, weeks, or months. Correspondence chess differs from over-the-board play in several respects. While players in OTB chess play one game at a time, correspondence players have several games going at once. Tournament games are played concurrently, some players may have more than one hundred games continuing at the same time.
Time limits in correspondence play are between 30 and 60 days for every 10 moves. This time allows for far deeper calculation. Certain forms of assistance, including books, chess databases and sometimes chess programs, are allowed. Books and databases are universally acceptable, but organizations vary as to whether chess engine use is permitted; the phenomenon of computer assistance has altered the essence of correspondence chess. In addition to profound chess knowledge and analytical discipline, the ability to interpret and guide computer analysis has become important. Given that players with poor chess knowledge can use the strongest computer programs to analyse their games, the gap between the beginner and master player has narrowed in recent years. However, the influence of computer assistance remains controversial in both official and casual play, consensus on the issue of whether to allow computer aid is still lacking. Variant chess games are played on public chess servers or chess forums.
Since the games are a modified form of chess, chess engines may be less helpful, or based on the variant useless. For example, chess games played on an unbounded chessboard, or infinite chess, are untouched by chess-playing software. Correspondence chess tournaments are played under the auspices of an official regulatory body, most the International Correspondence Chess Federation, affiliated with FIDE, the international chess organization. However, the ICCF, which organizes postal and email events, is not the only organization involved in correspondence chess. There are numerous national and regional bodies for postal chess, as well as a number of organisations devoted to organizing email play for free such as the International Email Chess Group, the Free Internet Correspondence Games Server, that runs a world championship cycle, International E-mail Chess Club. However, groups other than the ICCF are not sanctioned by FIDE; the ICCF awards the titles International Master, Senior International Master and International Correspondence Chess Grandmaster—these are equivalent to similar titles awarded by FIDE for over-the-board chess.
The ICCF runs the World Correspondence Chess Championships. Because these events can last a long time, they may overlap: for instance, in February 2005 Joop van Oosterom was declared winner of the eighteenth Championship, though the winner of the seventeenth Championship had not yet been determined. Up until 2004, ICCF correspondence chess was played only via postal mail. For playing by these two forms of transmission, the ICCF developed their own game notation, known as the ICCF numeric notation for the purpose of ICCF correspondence chess. In recent years, the use of powerful chess programs has brought forth new challenges for organizations like the ICCF and the U. S. Chess Federation, necessitating sometimes controversial decisions on the admissibility of such programs in official correspondence play. Moreover, the emergence of the Internet has brought new opportunities for correspondence chess, not all of which are organized by official bodies. Casual correspondence chess includes correspondence play initiated through correspondence chess servers and games played between individuals who meet and play on their own.
Casual correspondence play does not lead to official ratings, though some chess servers will calculate ratings for the players based on results on that server. There are several types of correspondence chess, with server based correspondence chess becoming the most popular form in the world today, with major correspondence servers becoming as large and popular as the online blitz chess servers. Correspondence chess servers are database-driven and carry with them a web-based interface for submitting moves to the database, but they do create the possibility of facilitating any method of transmission, as long as the transmitted moves are audited within the server's database. Server fees vary. Most casual servers use a yearly charging model, whereby players can play as many tournaments or games as they want all year round; some servers offer basic membership with more services available for a fee. More casual servers allow the use of nicknames, have a real-time rating system which adjusts a player's rating after each rated game.
Casual servers t
Chessgames.com is an Internet chess community with over 224,000 members. The site maintains a large database of chess games, where each game has its own discussion page for comments and analysis. Limited to games where at least one player is of master strength, the database begins with the earliest known recorded games and is updated with games from current top-level tournaments. Basic membership is free, the site is open to players at all levels of ability, with additional features available for Premium members. While the primary purpose of Chessgames.com is to provide an outlet for chess discussion and analysis, consultation games are periodically organized with teams of members playing either other teams of members or strong masters, including a former US champion and two former world correspondence champions. Members can maintain their own discussion pages, there are features to assist study of openings and sacrifices; the front page features a puzzle of the day, player of the day, game of the day, the puzzle varying in difficulty throughout the week from "very easy" on Mondays to "insane" on Sundays.
Chessgames.com was founded in 2001 by Daniel Freeman and Alberto Artidiello in association with 20/20 Technologies. They developed software to integrate a chess database with a discussion forum, so that all games and players have a unique message board; the concept was popular as users can kibitz on many games and pages throughout the site. The Kramnik–Lékó World Championship 2004 match in Brissago was broadcast live on the site; this led to substantial growth in membership and interest, which has increased since due to other live events and many site enhancements. Co-founder Alberto Artidiello died on March 1, 2015, at the age of 56. Co-founder and longtime webmaster Daniel Freeman died on July 24, 2018, at the age of 50; the site is being administered on an interim basis by a user with the handle "Sargon", a longtime friend and business partner of Freeman's who had assisted him with management of the site at various times. The site's database of games was constructed by combining six large databases and weeding out duplicate games.
The primary criterion for inclusion in the Chessgames.com database is that one of the players should be master strength to reduce low quality games and erroneous fabrications. Their original goal was 750,000 games, their estimate of the total number of serious chess games, recorded up to and including 2005; the database presently contains over 700,000 games. Each game page lists a user feedback process to eliminate bad games, help correct errors, remove any duplicates; each game on Chessgames.com is hosted on a separate web page to allow internal and external weblinks to that particular game. Although other online databases may contain more games, they do not permit external links to individual games or allow for kibitzing on each game. According to its webmaster, Chessgames strives for quality games without participating in the arms-race mentality that produces chess databases containing millions of questionable games; the site has over 197,000 registered members, with 2,500 new members per month.
At any time, several hundred people are using the site. A sample of Group demographics from a 2005 questionnaire: 98 percent male, 50 percent from North America, average rating 1600–1800 with one third unrated. Members post messages under a specific username, which may be their real identity or an anonymous handle. Prominent Chessgames.com members include former Women's World Champion Susan Polgar, former World Championship candidate Nigel Short, former U. S. Champion Gata Kamsky, chess authors Grandmaster Raymond Keene and FIDE Master Eric Schiller, FIDE Master Jonathan Sarfati, past USCF President Grandmaster Maxim Dlugy, International Master Lawrence Day, Woman Grandmasters Natalia Pogonina and Yelena Dembo. Grandmasters who have posted on Chessgames.com include Varuzhan Akobian, Rogelio Antonio Jr. Keith Arkell, Oliver Barbosa, Jayson Gonzales, Danny Gormally, Jon Ludvig Hammer, Arno Nickel, David Norwood, James Plaskett, Alejandro Ramirez, Yury Shulman, Wesley So, Mihai Suba, Gert Jan Timmerman, Tansel Turgut, Mikhail Umansky, Simon Kim Williams and Patrick Wolff.
The Internet Age created the potential for one grandmaster to play against a large group in a consultation game, starting with former World Champion Anatoly Karpov defeating The World in 1996 followed by World Champion Garry Kasparov beating The World in 1999. Since other collections of amateurs have represented The World versus one grandmaster with varying degrees of success. Chessgames.com began team play as The World in 2006 and defeated noted computer expert GM Arno Nickel. The group duplicated that result by winning as Black against 2007 US Champion GM Yury Shulman, won again against the former Correspondence World Champion Gert Jan Timmerman in 2007; the Chessgames World Team drew four matches in a row: a 2008 rematch with GM Nickel, as Black in 2009 against the former ICCF World Champion Mikhail Markovich Umansky, as White in 2010 against WGM Natalia Pogonina, as Black in 2011 against GM Varuzhan Akobian. The Chessgames.com team won a rematch as White against GM Akobian in 2012, won against GM Simon Kim Williams in 2013-14.
The Team won their latest game in 2014 as white against GM Arkadij Naiditsch giving the team a current record of six wins, four draws, no losses. Chessgames.com's stated goal for members is "to participate and learn from players stronger than, while guiding those who are weaker." The site is designed to be "a worldwide
The Soviet Union the Union of Soviet Socialist Republics, was a socialist state in Eurasia that existed from 1922 to 1991. Nominally a union of multiple national Soviet republics, its government and economy were centralized; the country was a one-party state, governed by the Communist Party with Moscow as its capital in its largest republic, the Russian Soviet Federative Socialist Republic. Other major urban centres were Leningrad, Minsk, Alma-Ata, Novosibirsk, it spanned over 10,000 kilometres east to west across 11 time zones, over 7,200 kilometres north to south. It had five climate zones: tundra, steppes and mountains; the Soviet Union had its roots in the 1917 October Revolution, when the Bolsheviks, led by Vladimir Lenin, overthrew the Russian Provisional Government which had replaced Tsar Nicholas II during World War I. In 1922, the Soviet Union was formed by a treaty which legalized the unification of the Russian, Transcaucasian and Byelorussian republics that had occurred from 1918. Following Lenin's death in 1924 and a brief power struggle, Joseph Stalin came to power in the mid-1920s.
Stalin committed the state's ideology to Marxism–Leninism and constructed a command economy which led to a period of rapid industrialization and collectivization. During his rule, political paranoia fermented and the Great Purge removed Stalin's opponents within and outside of the party via arbitrary arrests and persecutions of many people, resulting in at least 600,000 deaths. In 1933, a major famine struck the country. Before the start of World War II in 1939, the Soviets signed the Molotov–Ribbentrop Pact, agreeing to non-aggression with Nazi Germany, after which the USSR invaded Poland on 17 September 1939. In June 1941, Germany broke the pact and invaded the Soviet Union, opening the largest and bloodiest theatre of war in history. Soviet war casualties accounted for the highest proportion of the conflict in the effort of acquiring the upper hand over Axis forces at intense battles such as Stalingrad and Kursk; the territories overtaken by the Red Army became satellite states of the Soviet Union.
The post-war division of Europe into capitalist and communist halves would lead to increased tensions with the United States-led Western Bloc, known as the Cold War. Stalin died in 1953 and was succeeded by Nikita Khrushchev, who in 1956 denounced Stalin and began the de-Stalinization; the Cuban Missile Crisis occurred during Khrushchev's rule, among the many factors that led to his downfall in 1964. In the early 1970s, there was a brief détente of relations with the United States, but tensions resumed with the Soviet–Afghan War in 1979. In 1985, the last Soviet premier, Mikhail Gorbachev, sought to reform and liberalize the economy through his policies of glasnost and perestroika, which caused political instability. In 1989, Soviet satellite states in Eastern Europe overthrew their respective communist governments; as part of an attempt to prevent the country's dissolution due to rising nationalist and separatist movements, a referendum was held in March 1991, boycotted by some republics, that resulted in a majority of participating citizens voting in favor of preserving the union as a renewed federation.
Gorbachev's power was diminished after Russian President Boris Yeltsin's high-profile role in facing down a coup d'état attempted by Communist Party hardliners. In late 1991, Gorbachev resigned and the Supreme Soviet of the Soviet Union met and formally dissolved the Soviet Union; the remaining 12 constituent republics emerged as independent post-Soviet states, with the Russian Federation—formerly the Russian SFSR—assuming the Soviet Union's rights and obligations and being recognized as the successor state. The Soviet Union was a powerhouse of many significant technological achievements and innovations of the 20th century, including the world's first human-made satellite, the first humans in space and the first probe to land on another planet, Venus; the country had the largest standing military in the world. The Soviet Union was recognized as one of the five nuclear weapons states and possessed the largest stockpile of weapons of mass destruction, it was a founding permanent member of the United Nations Security Council as well as a member of the Organization for Security and Co-operation in Europe, the World Federation of Trade Unions and the leading member of the Council for Mutual Economic Assistance and the Warsaw Pact.
The word "Soviet" is derived from a Russian word сове́т meaning council, advice, harmony and all deriving from the proto-Slavic verbal stem of vět-iti, related to Slavic věst, English "wise", the root in "ad-vis-or", or the Dutch weten. The word sovietnik means "councillor". A number of organizations in Russian history were called "council". For example, in the Russian Empire the State Council, which functioned from 1810 to 1917, was referred to as a Council of Ministers after the revolt of 1905. During the Georgian Affair, Vladimir Lenin envisioned an expression of Great Russian ethnic chauvinism by Joseph Stalin and his supporters, calling for these nation-states to join Russia as semi-independent parts of a greater union, which he named as the Union of Soviet Republics of Europe and Asia. Stalin resisted the proposal, but accepted it, although with Lenin's agreement changed the name of the newly proposed sta
Chess is a two-player strategy board game played on a chessboard, a checkered gameboard with 64 squares arranged in an 8×8 grid. The game is played by millions of people worldwide. Chess is believed to be derived from the Indian game chaturanga some time before the 7th century. Chaturanga is the ancestor of the Eastern strategy games xiangqi and shogi. Chess reached Europe by the 9th century, due to the Umayyad conquest of Hispania; the pieces assumed their current powers in Spain in the late 15th century with the introduction of "Mad Queen Chess". Play does not involve hidden information; each player begins with 16 pieces: one king, one queen, two rooks, two knights, two bishops, eight pawns. Each of the six piece types moves differently, with the most powerful being the queen and the least powerful the pawn; the objective is to checkmate the opponent's king by placing it under an inescapable threat of capture. To this end, a player's pieces are used to attack and capture the opponent's pieces, while supporting each other.
During the game, play involves making exchanges of one piece for an opponent's similar piece, but finding and engineering opportunities to trade advantageously, or to get a better position. In addition to checkmate, a player wins the game if the opponent runs out of time. There are several ways that a game can end in a draw; the first recognized World Chess Champion, Wilhelm Steinitz, claimed his title in 1886. Since 1948, the World Championship has been regulated by the Fédération Internationale des Échecs, the game's international governing body. FIDE awards life-time master titles to skilled players, the highest of, grandmaster. Many national chess organizations have a title system of their own. FIDE organizes the Women's World Championship, the World Junior Championship, the World Senior Championship, the Blitz and Rapid World Championships, the Chess Olympiad, a popular competition among international teams. FIDE is a member of the International Olympic Committee, which can be considered as a recognition of chess as a sport.
Several national sporting bodies recognize chess as a sport. Chess was included in 2010 Asian Games. There is a Correspondence Chess World Championship and a World Computer Chess Championship. Online chess has opened professional competition to a wide and varied group of players. Since the second half of the 20th century, chess engines have been programmed to play chess with increasing success, to the point where the strongest personal computers play at a higher level than the best human players. Since the 1990s, computer analysis has contributed to chess theory in the endgame; the IBM computer Deep Blue was the first machine to overcome a reigning World Chess Champion in a match when it defeated Garry Kasparov in 1997. The rise of strong chess engines runnable on hand-held devices has led to increasing concerns about cheating during tournaments. There are many variants of chess that utilize pieces, or boards. One of these, Chess960, incorporates standard rules but employs 960 different possible starting positions, thus negating any advantage in opening preparation.
Chess960 has gained widespread popularity as well as some FIDE recognition. The rules of chess are published by chess's international governing body, in its Handbook. Rules published by national governing bodies, or by unaffiliated chess organizations, commercial publishers, etc. may differ. FIDE's rules were most revised in 2017. Chess is played on a square board of eight columns; the 64 squares are referred to as light and dark squares. The chessboard is placed with a light square at the right-hand end of the rank nearest to each player. By convention, the game pieces are divided into white and black sets, the players are referred to as White and Black, respectively; each player begins the game with 16 pieces of the specified color, consisting of one king, one queen, two rooks, two bishops, two knights, eight pawns. The pieces are set out as shown in the diagram and photo, with each queen on a square of its own color. In competitive games, the colors are allocated by the organizers; the player with the white pieces moves first.
After the first move, players alternate turns. Pieces are moved to either an unoccupied square or one occupied by an opponent's piece, captured and removed from play. With the sole exception of en passant, all pieces capture by moving to the square that the opponent's piece occupies. A player may not make any move that would leave the player's own king under attack. A player cannot "pass" a turn. If the player to move has no legal move, the game is over; each piece has its own way of moving. In the diagrams, the dots mark the squares to which the piece can move if there are no intervening piece of either color; the king moves one square in any direction. The king has
Grandmaster is a title awarded to chess players by the world chess organization FIDE. Apart from World Champion, Grandmaster is the highest title. Once achieved, the title is held for life, though exceptionally it may be revoked for cheating; the abbreviation IGM for International Grandmaster is sometimes used in older literature. The title of Grandmaster, along with the lesser FIDE titles of International Master and FIDE Master, is open to both men and women; the vast majority of grandmasters are men, but a number of women have earned the GM title, with the first three having been Nona Gaprindashvili in 1978, Maia Chiburdanidze in 1984 and Susan Polgar in 1991. Since about 2000, most of the top 10 women have held the GM title. There is a Woman Grandmaster title with lower requirements awarded only to women. FIDE awards separate Grandmaster titles to composers and solvers of chess problems, International Grandmaster for chess compositions to the former and International Solving Grandmaster to the latter.
The International Correspondence Chess Federation awards the title of International Correspondence Chess Grandmaster. The first known use of the term grandmaster in connection with chess was in an 1838 issue of Bell's Life, in which a correspondent referred to William Lewis as "our past grandmaster". Lewis himself referred to Philidor as a grandmaster, the term was applied to a few other players. In the Ostend tournament of 1907 the term grandmaster was used; the tournament was divided into two sections: the Championship Tournament and the Masters' Tournament. The Championship section was for players who had won an international tournament. Siegbert Tarrasch won the Championship section, over Carl Schlechter, Dawid Janowski, Frank Marshall, Amos Burn, Mikhail Chigorin; these players were described as grandmasters for the purposes of the tournament. The San Sebastián 1912 tournament won by Akiba Rubinstein was a designated grandmaster event. Rubinstein won with 12½ points out of 19. Tied for second with 12 points were Rudolf Spielmann.
By some accounts, in the St. Petersburg 1914 chess tournament, the title "Grandmaster" was formally conferred by Russian Tsar Nicholas II, who had funded the tournament; the Tsar awarded the title to the five finalists: Emanuel Lasker, José Raúl Capablanca, Alexander Alekhine, Siegbert Tarrasch, Frank Marshall. Chess historian Edward Winter has questioned this, stating that the earliest known sources that support this story are an article by Robert Lewis Taylor in the June 15, 1940, issue of The New Yorker and Marshall's autobiography My 50 Years of Chess. Before 1950, the term grandmaster was sometimes informally applied to world class players; the Fédération Internationale des Échecs was formed in Paris in 1924, but at that time did not award formal titles. In 1927, the Soviet Union's Chess Federation established the title of Grandmaster of the Soviet Union, for their own players, since at that time Soviets were not competing outside their own country; this title was abolished in 1931, after having been awarded to Boris Verlinsky, who won the 1929 Soviet Championship.
The title was brought back in 1935, awarded to Mikhail Botvinnik, who thus became the first "official" Grandmaster of the USSR. Verlinsky did not get his title back; when FIDE reorganized after World War II it adopted regulations concerning international titles. Titles were awarded by a resolution of the FIDE General Assembly and the Qualification Committee, with no formal written criteria. FIDE first awarded the Grandmaster title in 1950 to 27 players; these players were: The top players of the day: world champion Mikhail Botvinnik, those who had qualified for the inaugural Candidates Tournament in 1950: Isaac Boleslavsky, Igor Bondarevsky, David Bronstein, Max Euwe, Reuben Fine, Salo Flohr, Paul Keres, Alexander Kotov, Andor Lilienthal, Miguel Najdorf, Samuel Reshevsky, Vasily Smyslov, Gideon Ståhlberg, László Szabó. Players still living who, though past their best in 1950, were recognised as having been world class when at their peak: Ossip Bernstein, Oldřich Duras, Ernst Grünfeld, Boris Kostić, Grigory Levenfish, Géza Maróczy, Jacques Mieses, Viacheslav Ragozin, Akiba Rubinstein, Friedrich Sämisch, Savielly Tartakower, Milan Vidmar.
Since FIDE did not award the Grandmaster title posthumously, world-class players who died prior to 1950, including World Champions Steinitz, Lasker and Alekhine, never received the title. Title awards under the original regulations were subject to political concerns. Efim Bogoljubov, who had emigrated from the Soviet Union to Germany, was not entered in the first class of Grandmasters though he had played two matches for the World Championship with Alekhine, he received the title by a vote of thirteen to eight with five abstentions. Yugoslavia supported his application. In 1953, FIDE abolished the old regulations, although a provision was maintained that allowed older masters, overlooked to be awarded titles; the new regulations awarded the title of International Grandmaster of the FIDE to players meeting any of the following criteria: The world champion. Masters who have the absolute right to play in the World Championship Candidates Tournament, or any player who replaces an absent contestant and earns at least a 50 percent score.
The winner of an international tournament meeting specified standards, any player placing second in two such tournaments within a span of four years. The tournament must be at least eleven rounds with seven or more players, 80 p
World Correspondence Chess Championship
The World Correspondence Chess Championship determines the World Champion in correspondence chess. Men and women of any age are eligible to contest the title; the official World Correspondence Chess Championship is managed by the International Correspondence Chess Federation. The world championship comprises four stages: Preliminaries, Semi-Finals, Candidates' Tournament, Final. ICCF tournament rules define; the first-, second- and third-placed finishers from the previous Final, the first- and second-placed finishers from the Candidates' Tournaments have access to the World Correspondence Chess Championship Final. The ICCF manages the Ladies World Correspondence Chess Championships, that comprises Semi-Finals and Final. Dates given are the period in which the final of the championship took place, as given on the ICCF website. World Chess Championship
Integrated Authority File
The Integrated Authority File or GND is an international authority file for the organisation of personal names, subject headings and corporate bodies from catalogues. It is used for documentation in libraries and also by archives and museums; the GND is managed by the German National Library in cooperation with various regional library networks in German-speaking Europe and other partners. The GND falls under the Creative Commons Zero licence; the GND specification provides a hierarchy of high-level entities and sub-classes, useful in library classification, an approach to unambiguous identification of single elements. It comprises an ontology intended for knowledge representation in the semantic web, available in the RDF format; the Integrated Authority File became operational in April 2012 and integrates the content of the following authority files, which have since been discontinued: Name Authority File Corporate Bodies Authority File Subject Headings Authority File Uniform Title File of the Deutsches Musikarchiv At the time of its introduction on 5 April 2012, the GND held 9,493,860 files, including 2,650,000 personalised names.
There are seven main types of GND entities: LIBRIS Virtual International Authority File Information pages about the GND from the German National Library Search via OGND Bereitstellung des ersten GND-Grundbestandes DNB, 19 April 2012 From Authority Control to Linked Authority Data Presentation given by Reinhold Heuvelmann to the ALA MARC Formats Interest Group, June 2012