CHESS GAME CONVERTER- HELP            

 

This program has been coded by Dimitris Siskopoulos (dimitris@siskopoulos.gr) based on an idea of Andreas Prapopoulos (marsyst@hellasnet.gr). The program is FREE to use but any modification or illegal copying of the coding process is not permitted.

This program is still under further improvement, so your comments are welcome! Please contact us at the above e-mail addresses. If you wish we can e-mail to you about any new version developed in the future.

This file includes a long description, made for those who have little experience with chess notation matters. So, please be patient while reading this!

 INSTALLATION

Just unzip the zip file and place it in any folder in your PC. To have the software working properly you shall need the VISUAL BASIC 6.0 from Microsoft. In most cases this is already installed in your PC. If you face problems with this Converter, you can easily download the Visual Basic 6.0. in a self executable file for its installation. See details for downloading in the footnote Remarks (5): Software Requirements.

INTRODUCTION of CONVERSION

Chess games in electronic form (usually downloaded from Internet sites) are written in algebraic notation and in accordance with the PGN Standards (Pgn=Portable Game Notation). The chess games are thus given in files with the extension pgn, e.g. kasparov.pgn (all chess games of Kasparov). Chess Playing software as FRITZ, ARENA, WINBOARD and other in order to play a chess game they need it in algebraic notation -in English Language- and better in pgn standards, otherwise the file does not open.

Many chess games given over the Internet in several circumstances are given in a non English language notation, as in German, Italian, French, Greek, etc. This games need to be converted in English notation and pgn alike in order that said Chess Software can play the games.
The aim of this software is to convert Chess Notation from a language to another. An attempt is made to make the conversion of non English games similar to the pgn notation standards; in order the converted notation in English language can be readable by a usual chess playing software. Inversely, you can transform a pgn game in your local language notation, if other than English.

 LANGUAGES 

Several countries have their own notation characters for chess. Let's take the example of English, German, Italian, Greek and Polish Notation. The Pawn is not mentioned here because it is not used in any chess notation, e.g. "Pawn moves to e4" is written just as "e4" where the word pawn is self-understood. The corresponding characters are seen in the following table (to read Greek you need Greek fonts in your PC):

English          

German

French

Italian

Greek

Polish

R (Rook)

T

T

T

W

N (knight)

S

C

C

I

S

B (Bishop)

L

F

A

A

G

Q (Queen)

D

D

D

H

K (King)

K

R

R

K

Therefore if you have from your sources a game e.g. in Italian characters, this does not play with anyone of the international chess software. Normally you would need to convert the characters one by one. This software herein converts automatically your games in English language and if you wish also in pgn notation. Converter can convert at the same time thousands of games in a pgn file far and above several MB pgn files. It takes few seconds per each MB.

CONVERSION IS POSSIBLE in any LANGUAGE that has characters defined on a PC keyboard.  The program allows INVERSE conversion from English to your language, in case you would need to print it out in such a form.

Eventually non Latin languages need the conversion of the x-coordinates as well. For example in Greek language alpha, beta, gamma...etc, has to become a, b, c, etc. 

HOW TO USE THE CONVERTER QUICKLY

Suppose you see a game at the internet in German notation. Just select the notation, copy it and paste it in a notepad text document. Save it with a name you like but with the extension pgn (name.pgn). If your notation has more that one game do not worry, the conversion introduces square brackets and it shall make all games open one after the other at your Chess software as Fritz, Arena, Winboard (Remark 6) or other. Then, double-click source to select in the pgn file you want to convert e.g. your name.pgn , after this select the destination of the converted file underneath. Then select the language pack from the window below. In this case it should be the German TEXT to English PGN.txt" and press CONVERT and wait few seconds. The new file as created bears is called name_cgc.pgn. Open it from your Chess playing program and see the game. You can use right mouse clicking on the language pack window where it opens the text file with the conversion settings in case you need it. In a window below you shall see the converted text. To activate this function you have to have defined as (usually by Microsoft) default Editor the Notepad Editor.

If you shall use the TEXT CONVERSION features please note there are two buttons for COPY and PASTE. No use of right click mouse is made here. It is of interest that when you have converted your game in English pgn you can press Copy and the game moves to the clipboard, Then, you can open your chess program Arena, Winboard, etc and click "copy or get the game from the clipboard". The converted to pgn game opens directly in your chess software and you can see it. After that you can save it as a pgn game in a file. ATTENTION: Greek and non Latin Characters Users should better change their keyboard to Greek or to other non Latin characters before they effect the non Latin text selection and paste in this Converter. 

DRAG and DROP feature: The program supports Drag and Drop method. Select from your Web page the chess notation you found. Drag and Drop the selection inside the upper window of the TEXT conversion mode. Then press convert text. Again, if you select the converted text you can drag and drop it from the lower window in Microsoft Word document or in another Editor (not the Notepad). Do not forget to include any comments and variations in braces {  }.

THE PROGRAM

Together with the program you get certain TEXT files that we call language pack which you can modify as you like or you can also create new ones with your Notepad editor. Just type inside the spaces ? , ? in place of the question mark, at left the character or symbol to be converted and at right the final character to appear after the conversion.

All of these TEXT files shall appear in the main window of the program so you can select whatever language and kind of conversion you would like. For example if you are Russian you can type the corresponding chess conversion characters in these TEXT files and save the file as "Russian to English.txt" or create an additional file (English to Russian.txt). The correspondences of characters in the two TEXT files must be the same otherwise you risk getting errors. For example if in one you have R to become T in the inverse TEXT you must put T to become R.You must keep all these TEXT files inside the folder Charmaps. The Help file should be in the same folder with the Chess Game File Converter.exe.

In certain cases the capture symbol instead of x is marked as : then you have to modify the instruction x,: in the Notepad language settings.Some local notations as e.g Portuguese do not use any sign for capture. This lack of x is read by Winboard however. So you need to open the converted file with Winboard, save it there as pgn and the file will be reproduced correctly to pgn standards with x as capture.

In the present software you get certain examples of text files for other languages.  Remove those that you do not need and/or create your own ones in your language. To get back the removed ones unzip again the download file Chess Game Converter. Just open the text files, and then make the required modifications to create the correspondence of the characters and save it with a new name with the txt extension (newname.txt). Do not forget to keep without change the last instructions (see the text with Notepad. These are: "x","x" "0-0","O-O" "0-0-0","O-O-O" "[","{" "]","}" "1-0","{Result 1-0}* [ ]" "0-1","{Result 0-1}* [ ]" "1/2-1/2","{Result 1/2-1/2}* [ ]" "@","[ ]") Otherwise your chess game may not play.

 CONVERSION to PGN

An attempt is made when converting to English language to make directly a file similar to PGN so your chess software can read it. So, after you have converted a notation e.g. from Italian to English you need to play it with your chess program and thus you must have it in a pgn similar form. Pgn form to be read as such needs to find at least one square bracket in the beginning and (a result) at the end either 1-0 or 1-0 or 1/2-1/2 or an asterix (*) for un-ended games. Also, some games are using zeros (0-0, 0-0-0) for castling, so we change automatically all these zeros in Os (O-O, O-O-O) in accordance with the pgn standards. We also convert all square brackets in Braces { } so that the chess program is not thinking that a new game is starting, everytime it finds new square brackets. The parentheses ( ) can be deleted if you so edit your TEXT file. 

The software introduces alone by the conversion square brackets at the start of each game so games can be read individually one after the other. For this task a symbol as the @ is automatically introduced you will not see it- and converted in square brackets [ ]. Unfortunately, Event, Site, White and Black Players can not be translated from one language to another. It should be inserted manually. {Attention: When you convert from PGN to another language TEXT, several characters inside the Square Brackets of the PGN game data will appear changed also. However, the Algebraic Notation of the game in the converted language will be correct} We could work out a solution for this and you are invited to give us your thoughts. See also Footnote Remark (2).

The WINBOARD Chess software reads easily any English notation. When you have loaded the English notation as a game you can save it as a pgn game. Winboard will introduced itself in the saved file all needed pgn standards, so at the end you have this way a fully converted chess game to be played in any chess software that opens pgn files. Sometimes, however Authors of chess games may make a typing mistake, so the game will not play. Go back to the original game text and check for any missing move. There is no scope here to crate any conversion of chess position as the FEN (Forsyth-Edwards Notation) or the EPD (Enhanced Position Description) as FEN and EPD are normally given in english notation made by chess software. If you have cases of Fen/Epd conversion kindly let us know.

EDITING of VARIOUS LANGUAGES

We have not any means of testing other languages beyond those of Greek and Latin characters. Please try to build up the Language pack with your language characters and let us know results. Please note that the program makes conversions from top to bottom of the character map table. So if you convert K to R and later R to T you will find at the end T in place of K. To avoid this, you should put on the top of the list first R to become T and then K to become R.

We hope that with the above program you may increase your chess games collection, taking many games from other languages easily.

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 Schachpartie

game of chess

jeu d'échecs

partita

Partida

 

 

Remarks: 

(1) Games are some times annotated. There is no language translation but if you do not delete the comments, at least put them inside braces {  } to be included in your pgn file.

(2) A way to be able to see the names of the players and site in A NON PGN file is the following. Include Names and Site, etc between braces { }, copy and paste it between the two first moves of the game. You will see this as comments when you start the first move of the game. Example:

White: Yourself, Black: Myself

Site: New York 2003

 

1.c4 e5 2.e4 Qh4 3.d3 Bb4+ 4.Nc3 Bc5 5.g3 Qf6 6.Nf3 Ne7 7.Bg2 O-O 8.O-O d6 * ....etc....

 

What you do is this:

1.c4 {White: Yourself,  Black: Myself Site: New York 2003} e5 2.e4 Qh4 3.d3 Bb4+ 4.Nc3 Bc5 5.g3 Qf6 6.Nf3 Ne7 7.Bg2 O-O 8.O-O d6 * ....etc....

Now play the game and you shall at least see easily who the Players are. If you have the free Winboard program available load the game and save it as pgn with winboard. Winboard creates itself the pgn standards at saving.

(3) A game in pgn standards has the typical form:

[Event "F/S Return Match"]

[Site "Belgrade, Serbia JUG"]

[Date "1992.11.04"]

[Round "29"]

[White "Fischer, Robert J."]

[Black "Spassky, Boris V."]

[Result "1/2-1/2"]

1. e4 e5 2. Nf3 Nc6 3. Bb5 a6 4. Ba4 Nf6 5. O-O Be7 6. Re1 b5 7. Bb3 d6 8. c3

O-O 9. h3 Nb8 10. d4 Nbd7 11. c4 c6 12. cxb5 axb5 13. Nc3 Bb7 14. Bg5 b4 15.

Nb1 h6 16. Bh4 c5 17. dxe5 Nxe4 18. Bxe7 Qxe7 19. exd6 Qf6 20. Nbd2 Nxd6 21.

Nc4 Nxc4 22. Bxc4 Nb6 23. Ne5 Rae8 24. Bxf7+ Rxf7 25. Nxf7 Rxe1+ 26. Qxe1 Kxf7

27. Qe3 Qg5 28. Qxg5 hxg5 29. b3 Ke6 30. a3 Kd6 31. axb4 cxb4 32. Ra5 Nd5 33.

f3 Bc8 34. Kf2 Bf5 35. Ra7 g6 36. Ra6+ Kc5 37. Ke1 Nf4 38. g3 Nxh3 39. Kd2 Kb5

40. Rd6 Kc5 41. Ra6 Nf2 42. g4 Bd3 43. Re6 1/2-1/2

(4) You can find also other useful applications with this Converter. You may create a simple coded text to be read only by your friends with a TEXT file created by you and given to your friends! In your working place others cannot read your e-mails easily!

(5) Software requirements : OS: Win 9x / XP

 

Chess Game Converter is written using Visual Basic 6.0, and requires the VB runtimes to be properly installed in your system. So if you're experiencing runtime errors or your system indicates you are missing a VBRUNxxx.dll file then you probably need to install or update your VB Runtime .dll files.

The runtime files are available, free of charge, from Microsoft and you can download it from:

http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/release.asp?ReleaseID=28337

Download size: (1020 KB)

Contents: ADVPACK.DLL, ASYCFILT.DLL, COMCAT.DLL, MSVBVM60.DLL, OLEAUT32.DLL, OLEPRO32.DLL, STDOLE2.TLB, W95INF16.DLL, W96INF32.DLL

Notes: While installing, you may be prompted about the file being older than the one you already have. Always choose the option to keep your newer file.

Further info about missing files: http://www.webattack.com/help/missingfiles.html

(6)

- ARENA GUI Chess Software is FREE and has many features as well as it installs chess engines in a very easy way. You can have it from http://www.playwitharena.com

- WINBOARD is FREE you can get it from ftp://ftp.gnu.org/pub/gnu/ and see also http://www.tim-mann.org/chess.html

-/-

Please READ THIS:

The Author of this software DISCLAIMS ALL WARRANTIES WITH REGARD TO THIS SOFTWARE, INCLUDING ALL IMPLIED WARRANTIES OF MERCHANTABILITY AND FITNESS, IN NO EVENT SHALL the Author BE LIABLE FOR ANY SPECIAL, INDIRECT OR CONSEQUENTIAL DAMAGES OR ANY DAMAGES WHATSOEVER RESULTING FROM LOSS OF USE, DATA OR PROFITS, WHETHER IN AN ACTION OF CONTRACT, NEGLIGENCE OR OTHER TORTUOUS ACTION, ARISING OUT OF OR IN CONNECTION WITH THE USE OR PERFORMANCE OF THIS SOFTWARE.

Send this Converter to your Chess Friends. They might need it.