Forum Archive : Books

Euler: Everyday Errors in Checker Play

From:   BaronGossettEulerPhD
Date:   21 June 2012
Subject:   free backgammon book

As a contribution to this forum and to our magnificent obsession that we
call backgammon, please enjoy a free backgammon book at this link:

Wait a few seconds and then save the PDF to your hard disk.

The introduction explains why I collected these problems. I post them now
to stimulate discussion and to share ideas, particularly those ideas once
thought to work yet superseded by others that may work.

Taper Mike  writes:

Thank you for sharing your book with us.  I have worked my way through the
first 10 problems, and found them to be quite enjoyable. And yes, I did
miss 2 or 3 of them!

leemo  writes:

Many thanks, very instructive. I would happily have paid for it.

Ken Meng  writes:

Sir, I have had a chance to review parts of your book -- very thought
provoking positions and your explanations are both outstanding and
sometimes entertaining.  Who knew I would be reading Shakespeare?  Many
thanks and I plan to make a charitable contribution to a local alzheimer
association as you suggest.

Timothy Chow  writes:

[March 2013]

Last summer, BaronGossettEulerPhD posted a free backgammon book online. I
downloaded it, started studying it, and then for various reasons put it
aside. Now I'm back at it. I thought I'd post a few comments here to
encourage other people to read it.

The first thing I'd say is that this book proves that you don't have to be
a world-class player to produce a good and useful book on backgammon. What
you do need is the willingness to put in the effort to compile a good set
of positions and work at understanding them. That is what
BaronGossettEulerPhD has done. The subtitle of the book is "Everyday errors
in checker play." Despite this title, there are some difficult positions in
the book. What distinguishes it from most other books is that there are
quite a few easy positions in the book as well. Thus the QF [quiz factor]
is reduced and you have to be more honest with your assessment of each
position. There are definitely a sizable number of positions that are
"nexts" for the expert player but that I see intermediates botching all the
time, so the book does deliver on that score.

The author makes a serious effort to provide accurate commentary. In a few
cases I've found that the commentary is off the mark, but the hit rate is
no worse than in, say, Robertie's 501 Essential Backgammon Problems, and
may even be slightly better. The analysis is certainly more thorough than
in 501 Problems and is about on par with Boards, Blots, and Double Shots by
Norm Wiggins. The main systematic shortcoming is that when writing the
book, the author was primarily concerned with figuring out what was wrong
with his own play, and so he doesn't give enough attention to plays other
than the top play and his own play. Overall, though, I think this book is
definitely worth taking the time to read. Recommended.
Did you find the information in this article useful?          

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