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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: of 9208  
Subject: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 11:16 AM
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Anybody else here read/collect chess Informants?

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=2554&item=3101588951

What a find! And a bargain to boot! If only I didn't already have over half of these.......
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Author: psuasskicker6 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7279 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 12:08 PM
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$400? Holy crap!

Are they that educational?

- C -

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Author: ortman Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7281 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 12:12 PM
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$400? Holy crap!

Are they that educational?


That was my first thought as well.

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7292 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 1:42 PM
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Are they that educational?


I take it you've never seen an Informant. They are basically compilations of all the games played by the best in the world. They usually come out twice a year, so each book has about 6 months worth of grandmaster level tournament chess in it. If memory serves, you can subscribe (I think the current issue is somewhere in the mid 80's), but they cost somewhere between $30-$40 a pop. The older ones can be had for significantly less.....if you can find them.

Interesting tidbit....Issue #1 was the only one to actually have pictures of the players.

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7293 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 1:44 PM
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$400? Holy crap!

Are they that educational?

That was my first thought as well.


That's actually pretty good, but I suspect it will end up going for a bit more than that. I've got more than that invested in my collection of Informants. I'm still half tempted to buy it and break up my existing collection to sell on Ebay. Might be able to recover most of the cost of the whole collection.

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7294 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 1:46 PM
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Come to think of it, I've got an extra Informant laying around somewhere. First one who wants it can have it for free.

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Author: ortman Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7302 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 2:06 PM
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I take it you've never seen an Informant. They are basically compilations of all the games played by the best in the world.

Are they annotated as well as say, Logical Chess?

-Ortman

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7303 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 2:22 PM
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Well, I've never read Logical Chess, so I really couldn't say. The games are all listed, but until you get used to them, you've got to do a little deciphering to figure out what everything means. They use every means at their disposal to save on space, including abbreviated notation. But once you get used to it, it shouldn't be too bad. But they are not exactly instructional books.....there are no words. Just the games, and sometimes it explores other lines within the game. An Informant won't hold your hand.....you pretty much gotta figure it out for yourself. But they are still kinda neat nonetheless.

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Author: ortman Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7306 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 2:30 PM
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Well, I've never read Logical Chess, so I really couldn't say.

Too bad, it's a good book. You should check it out some time. He annotates 24 games (similar to Brilliant Chess); and does a very nice job doing so.

I found it to be a great learning book.

-Ortman

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7309 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 2:40 PM
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Who wrote Logical Chess? It sounds familiar.

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Author: ortman Big red star, 1000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7311 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/24/2002 2:57 PM
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Who wrote Logical Chess? It sounds familiar.

Chernov. The local bookstore likely has a copy on the shelf.

-Ortman

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Author: psuasskicker6 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7343 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/27/2002 9:43 AM
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Chris, I'll take it if no one else wants it. :-)

- C -

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7348 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/27/2002 11:13 AM
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Chris, I'll take it if no one else wants it. :-)


Just email me with your address and I'll send it out next Monday.

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Author: Manfreud Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7353 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/27/2002 9:38 PM
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Now I have one more reason to hate this bear market...
All my money is tied up in DOGS!!! Woof, Woof!
To make matters worse, my free cash flow has places to go until February. Talk about a financial gridlock :((
By the way, 74 volumes of Informant for that price is very enticing, but right now with the baby coming and having to pay airfare for my mother-in-law to come from Brazil, I am out of ammo. Damn!
Someone in this board please buy that collection, you guys earn wages in US money, I do in piss poor Canadian dollars.
I just had to vent my frustrations, I feel better now.
No, I dont... Where is that elusive bull market???
Too much pain...

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Author: rinjr715 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7355 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/27/2002 10:02 PM
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Don't feel bad, Manfreud, I recently sold some KMart stock for 35 cents a share that I had paid 23 bucks for 9 years ago. Uncle Sam ain't gonna like that either, because it's gonna cost him several hundred bucks.

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Author: bpogo3 Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7357 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/27/2002 11:12 PM
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I am currently watching this auction. I just checked it and someone has made an initial bid. There is still two+ days left before the auction is over.

What do you feel the max. bid should be for this item?


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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7358 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/27/2002 11:20 PM
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Thank you Manfreud! At least I'm not the only one here who thinks that $400 for the complete first 74 volumes is a good deal.

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7359 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/27/2002 11:27 PM
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What do you feel the max. bid should be for this item?

HEH HEH.....let's figure this up. In my experience, these volumes usually go individually on Ebay for anywhere between $10 and $20 a pop. Some of them can go even higher (like No. 1). So if you figure half at $10 and half at $20, you're looking at just over $1100. Then you might wanna go a little bit higher because someone else has already gone to the trouble to actually put this collection together. Believe me, that is quite a monumental task. But I really doubt that it will even get close to $1000.....chess players are generally a cash-strapped lot. <G> If I didn't already have over half of them, I'd put $700 on it without batting an eyelash.


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Author: bpogo3 Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7360 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/27/2002 11:38 PM
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Thanks cnfrost, for the analysis. I will keep a closer eye on this auction towards the end to see if my wife will allow me to purchase this set. Unfortunately, if I do end up buying it, I won't have it available to me until sometime next year as I would have it shipped to my parents home in the U.S. instead of having it sent to me in China.

I suppose I could have my dad send me a few volumes to work on at a time. :P

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7361 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/28/2002 12:01 AM
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good luck.....like Manfreud said, someone here oughta buy it :)

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Author: Manfreud Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7364 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/28/2002 5:11 PM
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I don't know much about bidding strategies on e-bay. Do people usually wait until the last day to commit? (I am an e-bay virgin). If that is not common, then this bidding inactivity on the Informants is a very good sign that the collection will go at bargain levels. The only advice I have for all here: be sure what the text of an Informant looks like before purchasing them. Informants are the weapons of serious players, and all masters have them; however, one will not see any "Yasser Seirawan-like" comments on the games. Instead, be prepared to see arrows, triangles, and other symbols as explanations in key variations. I believe Informants or a program like Chessbase are excellent vehicles of learning, one just needs to be used to them.
Good luck to all.

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Author: Manfreud Two stars, 250 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7366 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/28/2002 6:28 PM
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"Don't feel bad, Manfreud, I recently sold some KMart stock for 35 cents a share that I had paid 23 bucks for 9 years ago. Uncle Sam ain't gonna like that either, because it's gonna cost him several hundred bucks."

I have had a similar experience, with a POS stock called Actrade (ACRT). It was my 4th stock purchase ever (I began in Nov 2001 with NOK; previous to that, mutual funds since 2000). ACRT was an attempt at a value small-cap stock with great numbers (P/E 6.0, P/B 1.9, ROE 30%, 5-y ave EPS growth 69%, current ratio 1.8, etc) that looked like an unbelievable bargain, albeit very volatile.
S&P valued ACRT at $38, the stock had been at $35 in Jan 2002, and then it plunged to $11 in late Feb, a roller coaster not for the faint of heart. I bought it on mid March at $17 on a weak uptrend, that went well and reached $19 before dropping to $10, a major long-term support level, below book, so I decided to hold. To my horror, on the eve of July 04, ACRT discloses that earnings will come in significantly lower than expected, maybe at break-even. This sneaky announcement came after management had said on the previous month that EPS would come in strong at about $0.80 for the quarter! So I woke up on July 05 to do my usual checking of the market and see the impact of the news on ACRT, but I was utterly unprepared for what I saw: 60% drop overnight, I felt like throwing up. Ironically, a few weeks earlier I had seen a 60% drop on Qwest and remember telling myself "Holy crap, thank Goodness I am not in that stock"...
This was the period of pain, now comes the bizarre ending: Shortly afterwards, ACRT is investigated by the SEC and claims that they are unable to produce a statement of earnings for that quarter. Therefore, on Aug 23, NASDAQ halts trading at $2.52 (below CASH VALUE of $3.88) indefinitely until ACRT is able to produce a 10-q. Meanwhile,the symbol changes to ACRTE (ominous sign),the CEO "moves" to Israel, shareholder questions go unanswered by remaining management, etc, until on Dec 12 ACRT files for Chapter 11, gets delisted, and a few days later starts trading on the pink sheets, promptly dropping from $2.52 to $0.25, then 6 cents, then 3 pennies... after that I stopped checking and removed it from my TMF Portfolio.
Then comes the humiliating experience of explaining to my wife how I threw $2000 down the toilet in 9 months. Surprisingly enough, she was very supportive (maybe because she has witnessed my long-term commitment to investing).
In summary, I was ultimately the victim of fraud, but initially the victim of my own greed (the charts showed a somewhat predictable pattern of huge drops followed by strong rebounds, doubling money from the bottom). I dismissed some messages on the TMF ACRT discussion board regarding the CEO's shady history in a previous company in Israel, and gave him the benefit of the doubt, along the lines of "he is trying to build a new life in the US". Very naive,I know... I will have etched in my memory the comment of a more experienced investor: "beware of small companies with dreamlike fundamentals", which I also ignored.
All my trades are very well documented and annotated, and I am thinking about buying a black binder and title it "Book of knowledge", in which I will keep the paperwork for every completed trade as a reminder of good/bad moves, and hopefully learn from those. Too bad ACRT will be the first entry, but life goes on, at least I didn't average down.


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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7367 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/28/2002 6:35 PM
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Manfreud is right....Informants can be very confusing and frustrating until you get used to them. I'm still not used to them. I might post a game here from an Informant for those who have not already seen what it is like, so everyone can get an idea.

As far as bidding strategies go....the early inactivity is not necessarily a good sign. Especially with Informants. Quite a bit of sniping occurs with Informants as well as many other "in demand" items on Ebay. If anyone doesn't know, "sniping" describes the act of placing an extremely high bid on something in the last couple of seconds in order to ensure that you win and that nobody else has a chance to outbid you. Most Ebayers understand that early bidding benefits nobody but the seller by unnecessarily driving up the price. In going with this strategy, you should make sure you are prepared to pay what you bid. It is very easy to get caught up in the "action" and end with buyer's remorse. If you win, it is a legal contract. So know beforehand what you are willing to pay, and stick to your guns. Don't let your pride overrule your common sense. It's an auction, not a game. Also check the seller's feedback to make sure he isn't a crook. I personally will give most sellers a percentage....if they have a whole lot of feedback, and maybe 2 or 3 percent of it negative, I might overlook it. After all, some people just whine about anything....and some people don't pay enough attention to the terms of the auction. Also keep in mind the shipping costs, which will be added to your winning bid. This collection will not be cheap to ship.

Another to look out for....and I've been snagged by this before...sometimes they will say that they accept payment via PayPal. email them before you bid, especially on something this expensive. You might be thinking "Oh I'll put it on my credit card", but unless the seller is a verified premier member, they can't accept credit card payments through PayPal....it has to be debited directly from your bank account. Unless the seller is a hard-core Ebayer, or running a business on Ebay, they probably aren't going to pay the fees involved to become a premier member. Believe me, it will not be fun to win this auction with the intentions of buying with a credit card and then finding out you have to send payment directly from your bank account.

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7376 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/30/2002 5:56 PM
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looks like it went for $660.....to someone I don't know....bpogo made a valiant effort, but came up just short. Nice try, though!

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Author: bpogo3 Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7377 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/30/2002 7:33 PM
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I woke up at 4:30 AM Shanghai time. The auction ended at 5:01 AM. No one had started the bidding so I started to see what the proxy bid for the first bidder was and he finally ended up around $475. Nothing happened for another 15 minutes or so, and then a new bidder jumped in and topped my bid. The first bidder came back and they jostled for around for a bit and then with about thirty seconds to go into the auction, I started increasing my bids $25 at a time to see if I could either beat out the current high bidder or find out what his max bid was. I placed a bid for $675 just as the auction ended still trying to drive his price up but it was too late. I had run out of time.

Being the inexperienced eBay n@@b that I am, I should have put in my max bid with 10 seconds to go, instead of trying to inch up the price a little at a time. Based on cnfrost's earlier posts I was prepared to go as high as $700.

The auction started at $400 with no action on the item for the 10 day listing period. Within 30 minutes the price went to $660.

I am going to keep an eye out for some of the later issues on eBay to see if I can pick one up at a reasonable rate. This will give me a better idea on the value if we ever get a chance to purchase a collection like this in the future.

Better luck next time!

Happy bidding,
Bill



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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7378 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/30/2002 9:48 PM
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If you're really interested....the new Informants also come out on CD-ROM in addition to the print version. If I'm not mistaken, each new CD-ROM not only contains all of that issue's games, but all the games from every previous issue as well.

If you still want a newer print version, they're not too hard to find on Ebay, but read the auction closely. Sometimes the header says you're bidding on Informant #x, but you're actually bidding on the CD.

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Author: bpogo3 Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7379 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/30/2002 9:53 PM
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each new CD-ROM not only contains all of that issue's games, but all the games from every previous issue as well.

If they released CD-Roms with every previous issue on them, wouldn't that make the past issues obsolete and not worth anything other than to have them in print? What would be the collector value?

Is there a website to go to for information?

I'll do a google search to see what I can find, but if you have the information go ahead and post it.

Thanks,
Bill

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7380 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/30/2002 10:01 PM
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http://www.sahovski.com

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7381 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/30/2002 10:06 PM
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True, the CDs would make the older print versions obsolete. But they do have value as collector's items (although you'll likely never get rich off them). I just prefer print versions myself. They're portable. They look good when they occupy 2 or 3 shelves on your bookcase. And I really can't stand reading off of a computer monitor. The print version also gives you margins with which to write notes. The CDs on the other hand, again if I'm not mistaken, are compatible with some kind of chess program (Chessbase?), and I think they are searchable.....like maybe searchable by players, openings, endgames, etc. I'm not 100% sure about that, but I seem to recall reading something to that effect somewhere.

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Author: bpogo3 Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7382 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/30/2002 10:07 PM
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Thanks, I found it also pretty easily. Here is the link to the CD they sell for all past issues in e-book format with their own software Expert 4.0 for sorting and loading the games. The price is 149.00 British pounds or about $235.00 US.

http://www.sahovski.com/gateframe/fciee.htm

Regards,
Bill

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7384 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 12/31/2002 12:34 PM
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http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=1124&item=2902476543

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=1124&item=2902479504

http://cgi.ebay.com/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&category=1124&item=2902481588

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Author: bpogo3 Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7556 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 1/14/2003 8:11 PM
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Shortly after the auction on eBay for the Chess Informant books closed I received an e-mail from another person who was going to list his collection of Chess Informants No. 1-74 also on eBay and asked if I was interested in purchasing them. I e-mailed him back and said sure, what is your asking price, send some pics so that I can see the condition of the books, and let me know if there is any writing in the margins.

Shortly thereafter, after some bargaining, determining shipping costs, and arranging for payment, I am now the owner of a complete set of Chess Informant books #1-74 for the semi-bargain price of $700 including the shipping costs. I haven't seen the books yet as they were shipped to my parents home instead of trying to send them internationally to me in China. From the pictures he sent, the books appear to be in better shape than the previous listing on eBay with much less wear on the covers. Overall, I received a better condition set of books for a slightly lower price that I would have paid if I had kept bidding up the auction on eBay.

Regards to the Board,
Bill

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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7562 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 1/15/2003 10:28 AM
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Shortly after the auction on eBay for the Chess Informant books closed I received an e-mail from another person who was going to list his collection of Chess Informants No. 1-74 also on eBay and asked if I was interested in purchasing them. I e-mailed him back and said sure, what is your asking price, send some pics so that I can see the condition of the books, and let me know if there is any writing in the margins.

Shortly thereafter, after some bargaining, determining shipping costs, and arranging for payment, I am now the owner of a complete set of Chess Informant books #1-74 for the semi-bargain price of $700 including the shipping costs. I haven't seen the books yet as they were shipped to my parents home instead of trying to send them internationally to me in China. From the pictures he sent, the books appear to be in better shape than the previous listing on eBay with much less wear on the covers. Overall, I received a better condition set of books for a slightly lower price that I would have paid if I had kept bidding up the auction on eBay.


Have your parents already received them? I really really hope so. I really do hope that you actually bought a set of Informants and not just a $700 lesson in con artistry. Buying something in that fashion (something that wasn't actually listed) leaves you virtually no recourse if it doesn't work out right. PLEASE tell me they received the books!

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Author: bpogo3 Two stars, 250 posts Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7728 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 1/26/2003 7:27 AM
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Have your parents already received them? I really really hope so. I really do hope that you actually bought a set of Informants and not just a $700 lesson in con artistry.

-Update-
Finally received the confirmation e-mail from my folks that all 74 books arrived through USPS on the 22nd. USPS displays why if you want something shipped fast use Fed Ex or UPS. Took 10 days to deliver.



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Author: cnfrost Big red star, 1000 posts Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 7730 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 1/26/2003 9:01 AM
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Awesome! 74 books written in an esoteric chess language....you're officially a chess nerd! :)

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Author: TheNajdorfDefens Big funky green star, 20000 posts Feste Award Nominee! Old School Fool CAPS All Star Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 8978 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 4/6/2004 2:01 PM
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FYI, everyone should have a copy of the 'Best of Informant' or whatever it's called, it has the ten best games from the first 64 or 65 issues or something.

An amazing resource.

Naj

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Author: rinjr715 Big funky green star, 20000 posts Old School Fool Add to my Favorite Fools Ignore this person (you won't see their posts anymore) Number: 8980 of 9208
Subject: Re: if only... Date: 4/6/2004 9:43 PM
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Thanks for the word, Naj. Next time I see that in Chess Life I'll buy it unless the price is way high.

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