Site Overview
Origin: Site first developed as 350+ pages in Autumn/Winter 1996 by Peter Hobbs while studying HTML, all created in Notepad and Paintbrush (with board/pieces based on "Waxman"-style graphics). Site only became live in Spring 1998 as a "portfolio" project in white/grey, then began to expand...

Updates: Extra pages have been added since at periodic intervals to plug some gaps and cover lesser-known openings and variations playable within the first few moves of a game. Also several early transpositions. In mid-2000 an extra "Dynamic HTML Practice Board" section with drag-and-drop image pieces was developed. By February 2001 the number of illustrated positions had risen to over 1500, and server statistics showed the site traffic to be about 350 individual users per day.

In January 2003 the total of board positions was about 4,200 and visitors were 900 per day average when a further "Sight-Tests" section was devised.


Advantages: Compressed images (each 270x270 illustration about 5kB only). Strategy explained for every position, researched from several books. Lots of cross-linking, steps for every major opening for about 6-12 moves per player. The basic idea is to "try a move" and learn what the strategy or variation is actually called, to help further study. Project dedicated to a great friend Guy Frelon - a French chessnut with whom I shared lodgings in Spring 1996 - he used to beat me at chess games time and time again, while teaching me that chess can be twice as interesting to play and discuss if one knows the names of the strategies one is attempting.

Disadvantages: Moves are in English Notation (Big Mistake! although it's more descriptive than Algebraic). The "user guide" instructions may be confusing! Best to just browse, press on, you'll soon get the idea...


PS. Best enjoyment would be offline (downloaded) of course, because you can flip back-and-forth instantly then. Unfortunately a copy of the entire Feb 2001 site takes up about 10 megabytes (ie. 10 disks), otherwise I'd make copies available... something else to think about for the future. Meanwhile, have fun - it's good for learning with - I did!

Peter Hobbs - 1998/2001/2003

An EUdesign Web