Monday, 29 October 2012

iChess v3 released!

iChess v3 has been released!
This is a major release with lots of new features and design.

☆ Buy new Puzzles from within the app. Currently KID Saemisch & Tactics from July 2012 are on offer. More coming soon.
☆ Good alternate moves are no longer marked as failure. Uses Analyze This app in the background.
☆ Redesigned UI plus fritz style board theme.
☆ 3 move limitation removed. Now make all moves OR only the first.
☆ Some existing puzzles did not make sense and have met their end. They have been replaced.
☆ Reset scorecard option added. Now nobody can see how much you suck in Tactics.
☆ Other bug fixes and enhancements.

Note: The new permission READ_PHONE_STATE is required to secure the In-App purchases using the unique device id. NO phone data is accessed!

Wednesday, 8 August 2012

How to use 'Talk to Move' feature in 'Chess Book Study' app

Why 'make' the move when you can speak the move!?

Chess Book Study is the ONLY Chess app for Android that has a 'Talk to Move' feature.
You simply hold the mic and speak out each move.

1. Enable 'Talk to Move' setting from the app settings.
2. Hold the on-screen mic, speak one move and release the mic
Speak piece   square    OR     source square   destination square

Sample moves:
e4 = hold the mic, say e4 OR pawn e4 OR e2 e4, release the mic
Nf3 = hold the mic again, say knight f3 OR g1 f3, release the mic
0-0 = say king g1 OR e1 g1
0-0-0 = say king c1 OR e1 c1
Bxf6 = say bishop f6 OR g5 f6

* Only English algebraic notation supported. Let me know if you need more.
* No Internet connection required. All offline!
* This is an experimental feature and may occasionally cause the app to freeze/crash. Disable this feature if you face any issue.

AnalyzeThis just got Stronger, Better & Prettier

Today's AnalyzeThis update brings the most powerful open source engines, Stockfish 2.2 and Critter 1.6, at your finger tips!

What's new in v1.2
Critter & Stockfish just became even more stronger! Critter upgraded to 1.6 and Stockfish upgraded to 2.2.

Start/Stop engines. Now you have the power to simply turn off one engine, while the other engine is digging deeper into the position. Lesser battery, better results!

Increase/Decrease engine primary variations/lines. Wish to try some more variations from the engines? Just press + and the engine will provide you with additional primary variations.

Edit board added. Now you can set pieces manually

Copy game as PGN. 
Future versions will have direct PGN Load/Save support. Till then, you can manually Copy the game as PGN using this feature and paste in your favorite program.

Takeback and move Forward buttons! Yes, yes I know. The existing method was not always intuitive and would also cause false touches. Now, you have dedicated buttons that get out of your way (hide themselves), so that you can just focus on the position!

Other enhancements and stability fixes. Show/Hide board coordinates. See App Settings.

Chess Book Study v1.5 released

Today was an exciting release. Chess Book Study v1.5 has an interesting 'Talk to Move' feature!
Yes, you just speak the move and it will be played on the board! 
If you wish to try, please enable it from the app settings.

What's new in v1.5
Talk to move! Careful in public, people may think you are crazy. Enable it from the app settings.
How to use

Option to Hide board and read the book in full screen. Especially useful on small screen phones. Now you can read the book commentary without the board getting in the way

Open any Web sites like, etc and follow the moves on the board. Many of these sites publish games without a javascript board. This makes it difficult to follow, till now!

Paste FEN. Especially useful to copy from websites like chesscafe (they always have a fen string underneath the diagram)

Copy game as PGN. Future versions will have direct PGN Load/Save support. Till then, you can manually Copy the game as PGN using this feature and paste in your favorite program.

Zoom out to upto 50%. User Carl mentioned that some of his PDFs are too big on a 7in screen. Well, Carl, you can now zoom out to 50%

Option to show coordinates! With coordinates on, its easier to follow the moves, especially for newbies.

Takeback/Forward buttons! Yes, yes I know. The existing method was not always intuitive and would also cause false touches. Now, you have dedicated buttons that get out of your way (hide themselves), so that you can just focus on the position!

Minor enhancements and bug fixes - Resize board option has moved to the Settings. Clear Board option is now in the Edit Board popup. Also, "Black Move" option has been added to Edit Board popup which can be enabled if the position you are setting up is with Black to move.

PS. For the above features to work properly, you need to upgrade EBookDroid (customized for Chess Book Study) 
(Talk to Move is an experimental feature and may cause occasional freezes/crashes. If you face problems, please disable the option and report to me :)  )

Monday, 18 June 2012

New 'Analyze This' app and updates to iChess & Chess Book Study

Today, I am happy to release my 3rd Chess app for Android devices, 'Analyze This'.
Its a unique app which gives you the power of two Chess engines, simulataneously!

As soon as you fire the app, Stockfish and Critter, two well known strong open source engines, start chewing the position and provide instant analysis.
If you find an interesting position while reading a chess blog, just paste the FEN notation in 'Analyze This'.

Note: It is NOT an app for playing against the mobile.

      'iChess for Android' and 'Chess Book Study' apps have also been updated. These two apps now have engine support via Analyze This.
Just long press on the board and click Analyze This option. Stockfish and Critter will start providing you instant analysis.

iChess for Android finally has landscape mode support aaand a new app icon!

Tuesday, 24 April 2012

Free British "Chess" Magazine in pdf format

The British Magazine "Chess" is available as a free download with 29 pages and 13 annotated games in pdf format.
Ideal for use with Chess Book Study!
#android #chess

Thursday, 19 April 2012

Enpass bug in Chess Book Study v1.2

Chess Book Study v1.2 has a bug which does not allow you to capture enpass (pawn capture) for the side that is on top. It works fine if the side at the bottom tries to capture enpass.

I will fix this bug in the next release but meanwhile if you come across a position where the side on top needs to capture enpass, then just flip the board and make your move.
You can flip back again if you wish.

Thanks to my anonymous friend 'átopos' for bringing this to my notice.

Edit: átopos suggested a better workaround.
"Moving the pawn only one step instead of two is other simple trick to deal with this issue. I know, it is not the move in text, but it works until you fix the bug."

Wednesday, 18 April 2012

Chess Book Study v1.2 released!!

I am excited to release v1.2 of Chess Book Study with some important features.
  • Move Left/Right: You can now move back and forth through the moves. Just tap on the left or right half of the board or on any empty square.
  • Ebook Browser: Some of you mentioned that the ebook scanning operation in 1.0 can be slow and potentially shows a lot of pdfs (which may not be related to Chess). Now that is replaced with File browser so that you are in control!
  • Move Notation: See last move notation next to the board. This makes it easier to know at what move you left reading once you start the app again.
  • Illegal Moves: Basic illegal moves checking has been added so that you don't inadvertently move pieces to the wrong square
  • Auto-complete castling
(Thanks to Benzi, Munroe, Luis, Jacob for their suggestions)

Right way to study a Chess Ebook!

"Chess Book Study" is a unique fusion of an ebookreader and a board.
You can load any ebook and make the moves on a variation board in the same screen.
This helps to STUDY the chess book by making moves on the board and not just read it.


* Supports pdf, djvu & djv file format
* Multi zoom, bookmarks, goto page
* 3 board sizes
* Its Free!

Well I personally studies over 100 pages of Mikhail Tal's Life and Games during the course of its development!

(Ideal for large screen phones and tablets.)

Android Market Link: