Sunday 15 May 2022

The 37% rule

 I came across an article on decision making, called "The 37% Rule". Basically it suggests that you spend the first 37% of the time you take to make a decision to collect and collate information about the decision. Then when you come across an option that exceeds the best option you identified initially, you take that option and stop searching. If you don't find a better choice, then take the best option from your initial research.

How does this apply to chess then? On the one hand it probably doesn't, but on the other it may help solve the problem of time management. If you reach a critical phase of the game, and you feel that deep analysis is required, firstly, set aside the amount of time you think it will take to make a decision. The spend the first third of the time analysing your most promising choice (or choices). Then analyse some other lines, and if you find a line you think is better, play it. If not use all your allotted time and then take the best choice. 

Without any practical testing, I have no idea if this will work. Some obvious issues arise if you analyse the wrong lines first, but I think that this would be a problem no matter how you manage your time. What it may help with is helping you avoid analysis paralysis, where you can't choose between options. It also will help you allocate your time better, by in some case speeding you up, and in others slowing you down!

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