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Arimaa: Game Over?

  What’s New with Arimaa? In an earlier articlea I introduced readers to Arimaa, a recently invented and hitherto almost unknown chess variant. I argued that Arimaa has a comparable beauty and complexity to chess, but a much higher potential (given the lengthy history and extensive…

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Chess, Murder, Fraud

‘Everything about our situation was a riddle. Why would Karpov and three of his colleagues jump on a plane and fly hundreds of miles to Kalmykia to open a criminal case against me just for revenge?’ Bill Browder, Red Notice: How I Became Putin’s No….

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Arimaa, Computers and the Future of Chess

Andy Lewis   A common Arimaa starting position Anyone for a variation on chess? Is chess played out? This concern has been voiced periodically over the history of the game, and the challenges has never been more profound: over-refinement of opening-theory; perfection of endgame technique;…

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The British School

‘The British School is characterized by a great show of brilliancy. No idea is too bizarre for them, no concept too fantastic. They are hard workers, to be sure, but rather bent on finding new sensational effects than on constructing something useful. For the main…

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Out in the Cold

Olaf Steffens Long ago in Ancient Greece the Olympic Games were invented to celebrate all sports. In the searing heat men would wrestle, run and throw the discus, sometimes even stark naked. Then they would take a break and meet again four years later to compete…

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Andrew Whiteley 1947-2014

Andrew Whiteley, who has died aged 67, belonged to the generation of players who ushered in the ‘English Chess Explosion’ of the late 1970s. Most of them cut their teeth as students at either Oxford (Botterill, Lee, Markland, Whiteley) or Cambridge (Hartston, Keene, Stean, Williams)….

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Letter from Stephen Fry

We are sure that readers will have come across humorist Stephen Fry. A few months ago, the star of Blackadder, Saturday Night Live, the Comic Strip and numerous radio programmes was interviewed on television. In the background on his bookshelves was a copy of Batsford…

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The Fine Art of Swindling – Defined

 Jonathan Rogers There are many ways in which chess literature suffers from the fact that the game is not a recognised academic study. Take, for example, the imprecision of our terminology; we all use various chess words but seem to mean different things when doing…

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Pub Chat with Gary Lane

You’ve read his books and improved your chess. You’ve absorbed the wisdom of his Kingpin agony column and become a better person. Now listen to one of the most engaging characters in British chess talk about his life as a professional player, coach and writer….

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JK Rowling and the Double Muzio Gambit

The Oxford professor who helped expose JK Rowling’s secret identity as crime writer Robert Galbraith is an International Correspondence Grandmaster. Peter Millican, an expert in computer linguistics, told the BBC: ‘I was given some text by The Sunday Times – I had two known texts…

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