In Internet age, who needs board, pieces?
Saturday January 5, 2013 8:51 AM
By NM Shelby Lyman
It’s 5:30 in the morning.
I have just completed a game on the Internet against an unknown player identified only as “darkinvader.”
I lost the game. But there is more to online chess than winning. It’s almost always interesting and fun — whatever the outcome.
The Internet is a Garden of Eden for kids playing chess. It’s chess anytime, anywhere with a computer or handheld device. A tangible board and pieces are no longer needed. Phantom electronic representations do the trick.
So simple and so much fun.
A startling measure of online chess’s appeal is that young Magnus Carlsen, the world’s top player, rarely uses a traditional chess set. Bobby Fischer and other past chess greats would probably be aghast at the thought.
Fischer’s worn, ever-present traveling pocket chessboard and pieces would probably remain his first choice if he were still alive.
If chess is good for kids, how about adults or senior citizens?
Although some elderly people play sports, in few if any other games is it possible to so easily step onto the playing field and become a decent player at 60, 70 or even older.
And I have yet to encounter an aging player suffering from any form of dementia.
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– GM Susan Polgar