Site News

Somewhere along the way, this site had its 15,000,000th page view. I'm grateful to all who have taken the time to write in recent years to offer comments.

February 2008: Rick Kennedy, long a reviewer whose work I've enjoyed at, has kindly declared Predator at the Chessboard vols. I & II his favorite books on chess tactics. I'm very grateful to him for giving these books and website a chance to win his affection, and for calling them to the attention of more readers.

9 March 2007: The entire site is now available in book form. The links are at the top of the front page. There are two volumes, each of them 8.5" x 11" (about the size of A4 paper). Taken together they contain over 700 pages of material, with more than 1,000 positions and commentaries. Hardcover versions also are available for those interested; you can search for them at (which is where the links on the front page lead). At the lower left of the publisher's site, you can ask to have the prices displayed in pounds or euros if you prefer. Many thanks to those of you who have requested this for your encouragement and patience.

22 May 2006: The Chess Quizzer is back. This very valuable part of the site has led a difficult existence. It was up and running, and quite popular, for a while last fall, but we had to take it down because it caused some problems for our server. Now we have made some adjustments and are trying again. It's a great function, and I would like to thank James Skelley and Alon Cohen (again) for their work on it, and also to express my gratitude to the technology staff at BU for their help and patience.

Give the Quizzer a try.


I am delighted to report that the Chess Quizzer has arrived (though at this writing it is down for a few days for maintenance). This is an exciting new feature of the site that allows you to quiz yourself on positions from the book. First you decide whether to try a position from anyplace in the manuscript or to narrow the choice down to a particular section of it. Whichever option you choose, a position is given to you at random with no information except which side is to move. If you ask for a hint, you will be told which section and chapter of the book the position came from; then you also can click to reveal the solution—which consists simply of the discussion of the position from the book. I hope you will find the result is fun, and a useful way to test your grasp of the ideas taught elsewhere on the site.

The Chess Quizzer is made possible by the architectural wizardry of Alon Cohen, to whom no technical or design challenge appears to be too tall. We all can agree, I should think, that he has done a brilliant job, and that this new marvel is up to the same high standards of beauty and usefulness set by the original part of the site (standards set, I should add, by the identical Alon Cohen).

Bugs are not uncommon in a new feature of this sort. I invite the usual comments and corrections. I have, for example, tried to exclude any positions that don't belong in the quiz, whether because they illustrate tactical ideas that fail or because they are pictures of dinosaurs. If you come across a misfit, let me know and I will promptly remove it from the quizzer.


I am pleased to say that the Chess Journalists of America have given this site their 2005 award for best chess instruction on the web.


As the front page of the site mentions, a new feature will be arriving soon: The Chess Quizzer. It will allow you to test yourself on random positions from the manuscript (or from any section of it you choose) with the explanations kept out of view. You will be able to ask for a hint, and in reply will be told where in the book the position came from. Then you can reveal the solution and try another. I think many readers will find this a valuable addition to the site; for after reading the manuscript, one naturally wants to practice on positions where the theme isn't known in advance.

I have been working on this for a while with my brilliant and intrepid web design expert, Alon Cohen, and it's coming along beautifully; Alon's genius will be evident when you try the feature. It should be running sometime in September.


This site made its entrance to the world back in April 2005. Since then it has had more than 20,000 different readers. A hearty to welcome to all, and especially to those who have taken the time to write with comments, suggestions and the like. It is a high pleasure to hear from you.

I also have been particularly delighted to have visitors and correspondents from many different countries: over 150 of them. The power of the internet is astounding, is it not? Until only a few years ago it would not have been possible to make so much information so easily available to readers in so many places. Perhaps it will be of some interest or amusement to see the list of countries and territories from which you all have come (I update this list from time to time—most recently in December of 2007):

  1. Aland Islands
  2. Albania
  3. Algeria
  4. American Samoa
  5. Angola
  6. Argentina
  7. Aruba
  8. Australia
  9. Austria
  10. Azerbaijan
  11. Bahrain
  12. Bangladesh
  13. Barbados
  14. Belarus
  15. Belgium
  16. Belize
  17. Bermuda
  18. Bhutan
  19. Bolivia
  20. Bosnia and Herzegovina
  21. Botswana
  22. Brazil
  23. Brunei
  24. Bulgaria
  25. Cambodia
  26. Cameroon
  27. Canada
  28. Cayman Islands
  29. Chile
  30. China
  31. Colombia
  32. Costa Rica
  33. Cote d’Ivoire
  34. Croatia
  35. Cyprus
  36. Czech Republic
  37. Denmark
  38. Dominica
  39. Dominican Republic
  40. East Timor
  41. Ecuador
  42. Egypt
  43. El Salvador
  44. England
  45. Eritrea
  46. Estonia
  47. Ethiopia
  48. Faroe Islands
  49. Fiji
  50. Finland
  51. France
  52. French Polynesia
  53. Gabon
  54. Gambia
  55. Georgia
  56. Germany
  57. Ghana
  58. Gibraltar
  59. Greece
  60. Grenada
  61. Guam
  62. Guatemala
  63. Guyana
  64. Honduras
  65. Hong Kong
  66. Hungary
  67. Iceland
  68. India
  69. Indonesia
  70. Iran
  71. Iraq
  72. Ireland
  73. Italy
  74. Israel
  75. Jamaica
  76. Japan
  77. Jordan
  78. Kazakhstan
  79. Kenya
  80. Kyrgyzstan
  81. Kuwait
  82. Laos
  83. Latvia
  84. Lebanon
  85. Lesotho
  86. Libya
  87. Lithuania
  88. Luxembourg
  89. Macao
  90. Macedonia
  91. Madagascar
  92. Malawi
  93. Malaysia
  94. Maldives
  95. Malta
  96. Mauritius
  97. Mexico
  98. Moldova
  99. Mongolia
  100. Morocco
  101. Mozambique
  102. Namibia
  103. Nepal
  104. Netherlands
  105. Netherlands Antilles
  106. New Caledonia
  107. New Zealand
  108. Nicaragua
  109. Nigeria
  110. Norway
  111. Oman
  112. Pakistan
  113. Panama
  114. Papua New Guinea
  115. Paraguay
  116. Peru
  117. Philippines
  118. Poland
  119. Portugal
  120. Puerto Rico
  121. Qatar
  122. Romania
  123. Russia
  124. St. Kitts and Nevis
  125. Saint Lucia
  126. Saint Vincent and the Grenadines
  127. San Marino
  128. Saudi Arabia
  129. Senegal
  130. Serbia and Montenegro
  131. Seychelles
  132. Singapore
  133. Slovakia
  134. Slovenia
  135. Solomon Islands
  136. South Africa
  137. South Korea
  138. Spain
  139. Sri Lanka
  140. Sweden
  141. Switzerland
  142. Syria
  143. Taiwan
  144. Tanzania
  145. Thailand
  146. Togo
  147. Trinidad and Tobago
  148. Tunisia
  149. Turkey
  150. Uganda
  151. Ukraine
  152. United Arab Emirates
  153. United States
  154. Uruguay
  155. Uzbekistan
  156. Venezuela
  157. Viet Nam
  158. Yemen
  159. Zambia
  160. Zimbabwe

Many thanks to all, and do stay in touch.

Ward Farnsworth