Shelby Lyman on Chess: In the Loo, With an iPhone
Sunday, May 3, 2015
(Published in print: Sunday, May 3, 2015)

I first became fully aware of the practical implications of developing chess technology during a 1987 conversation with David Levy, the English International Master and computer chess entrepreneur. Levy predicted with absolute certainty that it would soon be possible to purchase an inexpensive chess program with the capability of beating the existing world champion.

He was dead right, of course.

Since the emergence of hand-held devices, the spectre of electronic cheating has hovered over the chess world. A recent incident at the Dubai Open reminds us of the potential.

The reigning Georgian champion, Gaioz Nigalidze, was discovered to be using a chess application on an iPhone concealed behind a toilet. Frequent visits to the loo alerted his opponent.

Is such cheating prevalent? Probably not at the highest levels, at least. Pride and personal integrity alone would seem to deter the strongest grandmasters.

But there is little doubt about the competitive ability of even a run-of-the-mill smartphone equipped with inexpensive chess software.

Full article here.

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