Category Archives: Chess Glossaries and Dictionaries

Chess is part of my life and my family, so taking care of this category is pure pleasure.
I play (not too well), my oldest son does (seriously well) and my nephew does (extremely well having represented Austria at many international competitions).
The reference works listed should come in handy for everyone, but I particularly has “chess parents” in mind when choosing the glossaries and dictionaries. It is a nice way to learn about chess and brush up your vocabulary, so you can stay closer to your kids.

Design, friends. Don’t forget about it!

I am currently screening chess glossaries and dictionaries. There is one observation I would like to share right away: Chess and design – seems that doesn’t go together to well. I find glossaries, well equipped with the most important chess terminology and obviously written with love and expertise, but – oh my – the designs are terrible!

Should that matter at all? Isn’t it the information that counts in the end? Yes, it should. Even a glossary on a personal page, written for no commercial aim, is written to be read. It should be easy to use and clearly structured. And design is part of this. If a page design forces the glossary user to partially close his/her eyes to overlook the surrounding in order to concentrate on the content, something went terrible wrong.

Take the chess glossary ranked number 1 in the Google research results: Chess-Posters.com Chess Glossary. It can get an award for the most disturbing background image! Something I am ready to overlook, but starting with the letter T – the background changes to black – and well you do not see text written in black on black background?

For sure Chess-Poster.com is aware of this, so why do they not change it? Might be the owner of the site doesn’t know to much about HTML ? What a pity.

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USCF Chess Glossary

Glossary Description

Again a small chess glossary covering all the basic terms you need to know in case you are new to chess. The glossary on chess terms by The United States Chess Federation (USCF) is part of their offering for new beginners, Learn About Chess. Important part here and to ease the fights you might have: the Official Chess Rules are made freely available online. The glossary and the site gives you a lot of chess information!

Example Term: Elo ratings

Rating system (now used by FIDE and USCF) to estimate the relative strength of chess players based on previous results; named after Professor Arpad Elo. The Fide and USCF ratings are separate systems although they use similar formulas-it is more difficult to obtain a FIDE rating, because it requires international play. If you do get a FIDE rating, chances are it will be slightly lower than your USCF rating. Important U.S. tournaments like the World Open and the U.S. Championship are Fide rated and USCF rated.

Glossary / Dictionary Details

Title: USCF Chess Glossary Terms: less than 100
Link: http://main.uschess.org/content/view/7327 Language: English
Quote as: Chess Glossary © Copyright 2007-2011 United States Chess Federation. All rights reserved. [+link] Last visited: November 04, 2011

IBM Chess Glossary

Glossary Description

IBM chess glossary? Does that make any sense? Yes! Actually the chess glossary found on the IBM site is a rather small one and it might have waited bit longer until its inclusion to DictionaryNet. But it is not always only about the glossary; also the framework counts.
If a site hosts a glossary to a certain subject you can expect that the site as such focuses in some way on the same subject, right? And I truly love the pages of IBM devoted to the greatest fight ever between human brain and computer: “In May 1997, IBM’s Deep Blue Supercomputer played a fascinating match with the reigning World Chess Champion, Garry Kasparov. The event was captured live only on this Web site, where millions of chess and computing fans tuned in to witness the event in real-time. This Web site is an archive of that event, and information on this site has not been updated since the end of the match. ”

So that’s the answers, why IBM has a chess glossary: Deep Blue!

Example Term: En Passant

(In passing) A special pawn capture which can only be effected once by each side in a game. If, for example, Black has a pawn on his fifth rank (say e4) and White, taking advantage of the facility to move a pawn two squares forward on its first move, moves (say) d2-d4, Black can capture this pawn – but only on the very next move – placing the capturing pawn on d3.

Glossary / Dictionary Details

Title: IBM Chess Glossary Terms: 120
Link: http://www.research.ibm.com/deepblue/reference/html/i.2.html Language: English
Quote as: Chess Glossary. © Copyright IBM Corporation 1994, 2011. All rights reserved. [+link] Last visited: November 04, 2011
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