Monday 21 July 2008

One of these things is not like the other

On the right are two positions. In both cases it is White to play and win. Of course the first thing that stands out is how similar they are. And this may lead you to think that the same idea works on both problems. Now maybe it does and maybe it doesn't (I'm not saying).
What I am also interested in with these positions is the effect that solving one has on solving the other. The second position was included in a recent issue of ChessToday and was composed by Philip Stamma in 1792. I had seen the first position previously (it may well have also been a Stamma composition) and used by knowledge of it to try and solve the second one.
However it was clear to me that solving the first position affected my attempts to solve the second one. So the survey question is Did solving the first position make it easier or harder to solve the second position?


Anonymous said...

Hmm ... The second position is a draw! Did you show it right on the diagram?

Anonymous said...



TrueFiendish said...

Grumble, grumble. Always feel a bit ripped off when the solution to a problem involves castling. Especially when I don't solve it! Yes I think the first one did make the second harder.