I just noticed that when black starts with the first move, there isn’t time added to the clock (playing in correspondence length games, specifically, though I assume that it’s the same for live games).

In Fischer time, the clock should start with a certain amount of time (a) , and after each move a certain amount of time should be added to the clock (b), so after one move, the clock should be Black: (a+b) White :(a) with the clock counting down on White. However, it seems that the clock after the first move is Black: (a) White: (b) with the clock counting down on White.

The editor so wanted to put smiley’s into this post, so here’s one for it->

I think the clock doesn’t run until the first move is played and then, white’s time starts to decrease. Hence, the time one can take to make the first move is theoretically infinite.

But let’s suppose that the first player takes (a - 1 second) to make the first move, will he have (1+b) to make the third move, or (a) ? I think he’ll have (a). He can time out, but it doesn’t change the fact that he gets (a) on the third move, whatever happens. Please correct me if I’m wrong

This part is correct, I think. The first move is kind of weird. I think the game is basically in a “pre-game phase” before the first move is made, where the first player is just given some amount of absolute time to make the first move. After the first move, the clocks for both players are started as FIscher, hence the first player doesn’t seem to get an increment for the first move, but the time spent on the first also doesn’t seem to detract from their clock.

However, earlier you said that this means that “the time one can take to make the first move is theoretically infinite”, which is incorrect since the player making the first move can still time out if they fail to play in time.

Yes we both agree. I said “theoretically” because de facto, the player will time out if she doesn’t make the first move in a given time. “Whatever happens” was a bad way to put it from my part.