ChessBase 9.0 – a media system to teach you chess (4)

by ChessBase
11/20/2004 – You can learn chess by reading text – people have done this for a thousand years. But now ChessBase 9.0 brings you vivid multimedia lessons, recorded in the high quality by the greatest players and teachers on the planet. Will we ever be able to go back to simple chess notation? Part four...

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ChessBase 9.0 – Part 4

The Chess Media System

ChessBase 9 contains the full functionality of our new Chess Media System, which allows you to play Windows Media files in very high quality from within the program. The point is that these WMV files contain instructions that ChessBase can execute on the board, so that the pieces move in sync with the speaker in the video.

ChessBase Magazine 102 media files as they appear in ChessBase 9.0

The recording is done in ChessBase as well. One can film a commentator or chess teacher, who moves the pieces on the board while he or she is speaking, drawing arrows and colouring squares. Replaying the recording in ChessBase 9.0 faithfully reproduces what went on during the recording session. All this is possible with plain audio files as well. Due to the excellent compression huge amounts of data can be stored on a simple CD.

Chess lecturers and lessons by Garry Kasparov, recorded in the Chess Media System

Garry Kasparov has recorded chess lessons in the Chess Media System format, which will be available on DVDs later this year. These products will run in ChessBase 9, Fritz 8, with a special reader or on your TV set if it is connected to a DVD player.

Vishy Anand talks interviewed immediately after winning the Dortmund 2004 tournament

The Chess Media System can be used – and is indeed being used – to produce a new generation of chess lessons and lectures, where top players and coaches are able to move the pieces around while they are speaking. The lessons can be viewed with the latest Fritz programs, but with ChessBase 9 you have a lot of additional functions, like the ability to pause and analyse with chess engines, that make the process even more productive.

Summary of ChessBase 9 improvements

  • Chess Media System (teaching videos with synchronized chessboards) integrated. Menu File – Open – Chess Media System.
  • Load a single annotated game as an opening book. Right-click in game list – Selection to tree.
  • Delete and replace games in PGN Databases. Hit Del.
  • Full integration of the DGT sensor board.
  • New notation “Score Sheet” including print functions.
  • Reordering variations during annotation. Ctrl-Arrow-Up/Down in the variation choice dialog to move a variation.
  • Integrated client for access to chess server
  • Classification of database in opening keys speeded up.
  • Mirror board in position setup on both axes (to create “new” tactical puzzles).
  • Configure Windows Clipboard (e.g. Text or PGN, type of PGN format): Menu Options – Clipboard.
  • Drag & Drop from and to all lists.
  • Optional display of final material in all game lists. Menu Tools – Classification – Final Material in the database browser window generates this information.
  • Save Games using Drag & Drop or Edit/Copy-Paste from a game notation to a database list. Hit Ctrl-C, then change to database list (or to database preview in main window), hit Ctrl-V to save.
  • Forfeit/win by default as additional game result.
  • Tool Tips explain notation symbols.
  • Text annotation entry dialog resizable, last position and size retained.
  • Clean up variations.
  • Spoken notation.
  • Board sounds.
  • User-defined keyboard shortcuts for all menu entries.
  • Changing of tournament, source, annotator, team for multiple game selections: Right-click selection – Edit – More.
  • Reset Elo numbers for multiple games. Example: Open tournament index, click on the tournament, click in the game list, hit Ctrl-A, Right-Click – Edit – More – Reset Elo numbers.
  • Improved handling of training questions, including new multiple choice training.
  • Improved presentation of game overview in multiple diagrams.
  • Shows Archives (CBV-file) in database explorer window and file selector.
  • Correspondence notation (“1.5254 5755”) supported also for keyboard entering.
  • Correspondence management information visible in game lists.
  • Tournament template with correspondence chess options like time control.
  • Improved correspondence chess management in printing, emailing, holiday, etc.
  • Improved match recognition in tournament cross tables.
  • Supports huge database with over 4 Gbyte file size.
  • UCI Engine interface.
  • Engine parameters can be saved as individual files.
  • Improved tablebase directory configuration
  • Multivariation analysis shows which lines have been verified at current search depth.
  • Improved graphics, like transparent arrows on the board.
  • New size-optimized GIFs for JavaScript games. Right-click on game selection – Output – HTML + JavaScript
  • Supports Windows ClearType font management in game lists and notation.
  • Improved cooperation with Outlook for emailing games.
  • Create a new database with Right-Click “New ChessBase Database” in Windows Explorer.
  • All file types registered in Windows.
  • Reacts without fuss to removal of a CD, database windows are closed automatically.
  • Evaluation column in repertoire print function. Menu Print – Repertoire for heavily annotated opening analysis
  • Improved Search

  • Full text search in game headers
  • Negated game header search (“Not”).
  • Search for number of pieces on the board (“6-men endgames”).
  • Search for wins of a player.
  • Improved entry on “or” and “not” board in position search.

System requirements

Minimum: Windows 98 (not Win95 or NT 3), 64 MB RAM, 300 MHz, DVD drive.

Recommended: Windows XP or better, 256 MB RAM, 1 GHz or better. Modern graphics adapter for fast 3D display. Windows Media Player 9 for video lectures.


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– To be continued –

Reports about chess: tournaments, championships, portraits, interviews, World Championships, product launches and more.


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