A.J.'s Game Of The Month    

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   This is my  "Page Directory"  (index)  for the year, 2015.  

  Symbols that I use in annotating a game.  

 (ALWAYS check the master list on the index page for modifications to this list!) 

Explanation of symbols:  The symbols I use are based upon the standard ChessBase/Informant ones. 
 (Except they are more-or-less turned on their sides, and with a few modifications.) 

A "plus-slash-minus" ("+/-"),  [or "plus, minus" ('+-')]  means that, "White is winning."  
A "plus-over-a line" ("+/"),  means that White is much better. 
A "plus-over-an equal sign" ("+/="),  means that "White is just slightly better." 
An equal sign ("=") means the game is level or the play is roughly balanced. 
An "unclear symbol" ("~") means that the play is unclear, but should be roughly close to equal. 
A "minus-slash-plus" ("-/+") means that, "Black is winning." 
A "plus-under-a-line" ("/+"),  means that "Black is much better." 
A "plus-under-an equal sign" ("=/+"),  means that "Black is just slightly better." 
The symbol  "<=>"  (or 'cp')  means,  "with good counterplay."  (For either party.) 
The symbol  "~"  means,  "good compensation"  (i.e. active play), for the material invested.  
The symbol  " ---> "  means, with a strong attack.  (For the player who made the last move.) 
The symbol  "/\"  means,  with a strong initiative. 
(This is not quite the same thing as an attack, but means
 basically the ability to greatly dictate the course of play.) 


"[]" or "box"  This signifies that this move is probably forced(The only move.)  [ I also use "T" now to denote a forced move. ]  

"TN"  - A theoretical novelty or a move that is new to opening theory. 

"ICT" = An International Chess Tournament ... usually the better players are present and it will be FIDE rated. At the very minimum, 
                you will always have a certain level of rated opponents, and this results in a category for that tournament. The category - 
                - in turn - dictates what type of chances non-rated / non-titled players have to get a FIDE Norm or an official FIDE rating.  
                (See the FIDE website for more information about title norms, and the chances to get an FM / IM or a GM title.)  

 "PR" - A performance rating. (An engine, human, or even an opening line all can get a PR, based on how well they did vs. master-level opponents. 

 "PB"The POWER BOOK.  In recent years - since the advent of really powerful chess engines - computers scan the various databases of games 
                and find those lines and variations which are: A.) repeated the most; and B.) perform the best. It is common - nowadays - for every line to   
                have its own PR, which shows how well each line did in master-level play. Obviously, the higher the rating, (and also the winning percentage!);   
                the greater the chance that a modern GM will use this move in his (or her) opening play. [See the opening book of any good chess program.  
                A few examples would be:  Houdini, Fritz, (Deep Fritz); Shredder, (Deep Shredder); and Stockfish.]     

  ">/="  The continuation that follows this symbol is better than or superior to what was actually played in the game or the given continuation. 
             (Or the annotator has discovered an improvement over a line that had been given earlier.) 
  "</="  The continuation that follows this symbol is worse than or inferior to what was actually played in the game  or the given continuation. 
             (Or the annotator has discovered an improvement over a line that had been given earlier.)


'!'  -   a very good or exceptional move. 
'!!'  -  an extremely good move, of great or rare brilliance.   (Not to be used lightly or often!)   
'?'  -  a bad move or a mistake. 
'??'  -  a very bad move  ...  or a blunder/gross oversight. 
'!?'  -   A very interesting move.  (I also use this to show that there might be a very wide range of move choices at this point.)
             (Some authors use this to mean some risk is involved.) 
'?!'  -   A very (extremely) risky move. (Or) A move of highly doubtful value(DUBIOUS.) 
           (Or) A move that is very much inferior to some of the alternatives.  (Less than best.)  
Most books use many more symbols than this, but these are the most common-place ones. 


      I also use the mark, (appellation)    '!?'    a lot.     

The normal interpretation of this mark (after a move) is interesting, but perhaps associated with a great deal of risk. I do  not  agree with this interpretation and prefer just interesting.  I also use it to show a divergent path in the analysisor  a departure from normal opening theory.  This does NOT mean the move is good or bad, just interesting ... and there are possibly   MANY   different alternatives  at this particular juncture of the game!!! (Please see this page as well ... for more information on the various symbols that I use.)  

This page was last updated on 03/21/15 .

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