by Steve Lopez

This week I'm offering a small buffet of shortcuts and tips (as opposed to shortbread and rib tips). Enjoy!


This one's been driving people nuts for a long time. Several users (including myself) were a bit disconcerted to learn that when one ran engine analysis in ChessBase 7 and tried to view just the top line of analysis by setting the number of variations to "1", one would get 8 or 10 lines of analysis instead. ChessBase user (and brainy mug!) Cyril Josephs figured out how to correct this and wrote to me with the info earlier this week:
  1. Start the engine analysis
  2. Click on the small rectangular box to the left of the engine name in the analysis window
  3. Select "Variation" instead of "Tree" (for the type of analysis display)
  4. Uncheck the "scroll" box
  5. Set "No. of variations" to 1
Ba-da-bing! It works! Thanks for sharing this, Cyril! Who's da man?? YOU da man!!


Sometimes you'll want to tear all of the analysis out of a game in a single crack; for example, I want to put a simple gamescore on my home page but I don't want to owe GM Ftacnik royalty payments for his notes. So how do we remove the analysis?

First, copy the game to a work database so that you don't permanently lose the notes in your master database. Then open the game from the work database. In the current crop of playing programs (Fritz5.32, Hiarcs7.32, Junior5, and Nimzo7.32) just right-click anywhere in the gamescore to get a menu and select "Delete all commentary". Bang! Variations and notes gone! You can then use "Replace game" to replace the annotated version in your work database with the unannotated version.

In ChessBase 6 or ChessBase 7, you do the same thing: right-click in the gamescore and choose "Delete all commentary". You can also use the keyboard shortcut of [ALT-SHIFT-Q] to do the same thing.


It's really weird how life works sometimes. I won't hear a specific question for months and then suddenly I get hit with the question five times in one week. Lately a lot of users have been asking how to get a move or gamescore into an e-mail to be able to send it to someone. You can't do this with our playing programs, but it's remarkably simple in ChessBase 7.

Your first step is to go to the Status menu and select "Options". Click the "Notation" tab and change your notation from figurine to letter notation by clicking on the "KQNBRP.x+" button. This is an important step. ChessBase 7 uses high ASCII characters to denote figurines (so the fonts will work properly) and these oddball characters will appear in your text if you don't make this change first. Click "OK" after you've made the change.

Then open up the game you intend to clip into an e-mail. Go to the "Printing" menu and select "Notation -> clipboard". This will send the game notation to the Windows clipboard (as opposed to the ChessBase clipboard). Then, in your e-mail program, click the spot in your e-mail where you want the notation to appear (to get a cursor) and hit [CTRL-V] on your keyboard. This pastes the gamescore from the Windows clipboard into the e-mail. If you only want a single move in the e-mail, simply edit out the previous moves (just as you would any other text) after you've pasted the gamescore in place.

Once you're finished, you can always go back into ChessBase 7 and reset your notation to figurine (by clicking on the "Figurine" button) to get your horsey heads back.

Note that if you want to send someone an annotated game as e-mail text, you can't use Informant symbols in the game. These symbols use the high ASCII characters I previously mentioned and won't appear as Informant symbols in the e-mailed gamescore. If you must use these symbols, just copy the game into a PGN database and send the database as an attachment to your e-mail. Your friend should then be able to load the PGN game into any program that accepts games in that format and see the symbols.

Until next week, have fun!

You can e-mail me with your comments, suggestions, and analysis for Electronic T-Notes. If you love gambits, stop by my Chess Kamikaze Home Page and the Yahoo Chess Kamikazes Club.