25 August 2009

Explaining Dynamics with Symbols

Continuing with Early Kasparov Annotations, I picked an early game at random and tried to understand Kasparov's annotations. The game I picked from Informant 27 (Inf.27, 1979H1) is reproduced below.

Note that Informant still used Rabar codes (D32/a in this example), instead of ECO codes (E12), to classify openings. ECO codes were first introduced as a secondary code in Inf.22 (1976H2) and became the primary code in Inf.31 (1981H1). The Rabar codes were phased out for Inf.40 (1985H2).

At first I thought Kasparov's notes to the game were skimpy, but then realized that he had highlighted the most important moments while respecting Informant's space constraints (the space allocated to the game is normal for Informant). He marked three of Browne's opening moves with '?!' (4...c5, 8...Nbd7, and 12...Nh5) and through later notes indicated that this was enough for White to win. He considered his own most important subsequent moves to be 20.Bc3, 22.Bf1, 24.Nc4 and 26.c5, apparently because this kept the initiative with White.

There's no doubt about it. When it comes to explaining the dynamics of a position, Informant style annotations, based completely on symbols, can't replace a good verbal description. To play through the complete game see...

Garry Kasparov vs Walter Shawn Browne; It ( cat. 10 ) 1979

...on Chessgames.com.

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