Last year's Christmas present I asked for never arrived. So I asked for it again ( and made sure I was a better boy this year). My son found "it" on e-bay this year and it arrived Thursday! Degroot's Thought and Choice in Chess is the book that WAS ordered last year on my list and when February rolled around, I was told that it was still unavailable and offered us to cancel and refund. So I was pleasantly surprised to see this land before the new year!
Yes, part of the quest de la maza finds its roots in this study which basically comes out and states the fundamental difference between master and patzer is the number of patterns committed to memory ( in order of magnitudes). But to summarize this book in such a one lined "sound bite" does not give enough justice to the rest of the book. It starts out building from the foundations of previous studies like Binet's study of grandmasters and simultaneous blindfold capabilities.
Will this make me a better chess player? Probably not. So why am I diving into it? I want to develop better insight into my own thought process as I make these over the board. To have such a journal that referecnes Alekhine, Euwe, Keres, Fine, Tartakover and other power houses of a generation ago is priceless and humbling.
As I am learning about my gaps and ultimately practicing thought and choice by doing tactical problems, strategical studies, endgame analysis and openings, my game will improve. I hope the insight I gain in this treatise will help me better understand my limitations.
Happy holidays! BP