Takchess Chess Improvement

A Novice chessplayer works to get better at chess using an improvement program based upon the methods of Michael de la Maza and the teachings of Dan Heisman

Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Pattern Recognition vs Pattern Association

The last post and Tempos comments got me thinking about the finer definitions of Chess Terminology: Pattern Recognition and Calculation as well as the components
of Tactical Play. It occured to be that the Pattern Recognition is a part of Chess Tactical Training but perhaps not the major benefit of chess training. There are some positions in the Four Knights and the Giuco Piano that I clearly recognize the pattern having reached them many times before but am uncertain as to what the best response is. So in this instance I have pattern recognition, I could set them up on the board without looking at it ,but have no solution to associate it with.

The Main benefit I am getting from doing the Ct-art Training is not necessarilly Pattern Recognition but learning the best response. It is building a tool chess of Tactical techniques ie: the sequence of moves that when put together make up a smothered mate, legals mate and the 1209 series of moves in the problem set. This is the how of bettering positions, winning material and checkmating. The main part is Pattern Association: Associating a pattern on the board or a part of the pattern on a board with very specific sequence of moves I have in my long term memory or at least able to figure out parts of it and solve the rest during play.

I think there may sometimes be a negative correlation at times when I try to solve a tactical problem and for some reason come up repeatedly with the same wrong first move. I may be repeatively being trained for an incorrect association. It may of been better for me to see the position and be shown the correct answer. Eventually with work these things tend to straighten themselves out. I purposely do not run the show refutation part of a program when I make a wrong move because this may enforce a wrong assocation. I have no way to verify this and am uncertain if this helps but it does allow me more time to focus on the correct answer.

I believe that Pattern Recognition is improved through trying to solve a problem . When one studies a position a understanding develops regarding it's structure and
coordination between the pieces. Now Pattern Recognition is important. It tells us that there is a potential tactic in the position and with Pattern Association and a tool chess of tactical techniques allows for strong tactical play. The ideal is a popping of the solution when a position is shown which occurs instantaneously and this comes about through doing multiple repetitions of chess problems. Back to Ct-Art..............

POST Comment
after some reflection, I figure I may of been a little too strict semantically. What I think the term pattern recognition can refer to the ability to see Tactical opportunities or Tactical patterns within the Postion. Not Position Recognition or the ability to recall the position in its entirety. Knowledge of Tactical Patterns and the ability to associate them is still an important thing to know .
Circle 2 cont
Wed - 356


  • At 4:56 PM, Blogger Don Q. said…

    I found this frustration with CT Art in the cirlces. Not only would I get the same problems wrong, I would calculate the same bad lines. I found it helpful to write down problems that I messed up several times and to review them between circles. This eventually enabled me to break the anti-pattern.

  • At 3:13 AM, Blogger takchess said…

    I just discovered in the statistic section one can browse to problem individual scores. I was unaware of this earlier. When I did the massive amounts of l20 about a year ago I did minicircles of incorrect problems as well as played back the correct answer upon solving it trying to ingrain it in my mind. Nice to see you back solving some problems. I would really like to see someone do sharpen your tactics Leins book in a Ct-art format. perhaps some day.

  • At 12:57 PM, Blogger transformation said…

    dear jim, i hope that this day finds you well. thank you as always for checking in and i am always truly happy to hear from you.

    lets see. first, id be interested in the GM-Ram book at another time, but must respectfully decline. i still have not quite finished averbakh's endings: essential knowledge, and really need to first read seirawan's winning chess endings as prefatory to secrets of pawn endings in 07 and shereshevskys endgame strategy also in 07. no one will disagree that to truly read and study and go through the diagrams and LOOK at the postion for both these books, is an endeavour of necessarily sustained focus. but i will stand to the side and listen in with sincere interest to what you and others discuss, please.

    i dont know the lein book. i saw him in seattle, and just liked the guy, he is older, and suspect that he has had a full life, and survived many a situation. i will check on this book.

    i love the statistics section, and check it all the time.

    someones rd fell off the que today, so you are #19 and i am #23. im after you jim.

    i was one of the twelve persons on line during the jubalee, but since i pause between problems, if only for a second, was more like a 1:18 chance id have been the 7,000,000 th user solving that problem. i was on line then with full awareness, but sure i was not the only one, as the users suddenly jumped at that minute. there are no secrets in this world. :)

  • At 5:18 PM, Blogger takchess said…

    trans, I had a feeling you would respectfully decline. As for CTS I'm not part of the hubbub, I have my hands full with ct-art and my books. CTS seems too frenzied for me. 7 million problems I imagine tempo, you and the other knights account for about 6 million. 8)

  • At 8:17 PM, Blogger Blue Devil Knight said…

    Excellent point about recognizing a pattern, but not knowing what the hell to do! That usually happens to me in the opening stages of the game.


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