I just finished to read the chapter on space of Play winning chess of Seirawan. Basically, to quantify and compare space advantage, you just have to count how many squares each side attacks on enemy's territory.
I find this definition a little bit strange (I think it's not the same thing to control a square with a pawn or the queen if there are trades involved; or if the squares you attack are defended or not; or if it is the same thing just to attack some squares and effectively control them being free to put one men on it etc).
Because of that I did some researches. Found this article (http://chessskill.blogspot.it/2013/06/space.html) which discusses this concept of space and the way to quantify it -counting squares. It is said that this notion can be not only useless but also misleading. Instead one should think in terms of "activity" (barely understand). I also have read some things about "over extension", so it seems to me that understand space advantage is a litter more complicated that say "ok, I attack 10 squares and you only 7".
I have two questions:
1. Can be useful to a beginner like me, who until now the only thing about positional play I knew was "knights in the center, bishops and rooks in open files", think about space in these terms (counting squares) when playing? At least it can be useful to know when to trade or not, no?
2. Does Seirawan (a GM) actually "count squares" when he plays or it just a simple way to teach beginners some simple good rules to follow?