I placed the first Bishop on the d-file, because I wanted to play with a center Bishop. HarryO placed the second Bishop on the e-file, because 'I really enjoyed the Bishops in the center in the past'. Whereas in our first game, HarryO had chosen to place the Queen for his second turn as White, I chose to place the two Knights. I put them on the c- and f-files to create a symmetrical position on the central files: **NBBN**.
For his second move, HarryO decided he wanted his King on the g-file, because 'I want to be able to castle short as soon as possible'. This left two squares for the Queen: either the a- or the b-file. He placed it on the a-file, because 'as Black, I don't want to add complications but want to simplify'. I imagine that would be a common reason for placing a Queen in the corner, especially against a good player. It takes the Queen longer to get into the game when it starts in the corner. Those starting choices gave us SP393 QRNBBNKR.
As White, I had the privilege of the first move and played 1.d4. Harry answered with 1...b5. That gave us the position shown in the diagram.
Some time ago, in Attention to the Chess960 Center, I observed,
There are two distinct, fundamental ways to treat a chess960 opening. The first way is to follow traditional chess opening principles, of which one of the most important is to pay attention to the center. The second way is to pay less attention to the center, but by taking into account the specific start position, to emphasize the rapid development of the pieces to good squares, even if this means making early moves like g4 or b4.
I am definitely in the first camp, following traditional chess opening principles. After playing a few games with HarryO, I now know that he is in the second camp, paying less attention to the center. That makes our games a clash of styles from the outset.
I spent a lot of time studying the position after 1...b5, looked at many different moves that adhered to classical principles, and finally decided that the non-traditional 2.a4 was my best shot. It solved the problem of developing my Queen and gave Black an immediate problem.
The rest of the moves and associated commentary -- we are only playing to move ten in these trial games -- can be found on HarryO's blog, Non-Random Chess960 Trial Game 2. Our first two non-random chess960 games have shown that the players can indeed determine the start position without any special equipment. Whether it is the best way to do so remains to be seen.