This month, my interests turned to chess history, and the new content reflects that. If you're interested in chess as it was played a century or more ago, you may love these new articles:
As always, let me know if there's anything you'd like to see on the site next month!
There's an app for everything these days. There was actually a very helpful app for iOS and Android during the last World Chess Championship match: it updated users live during each of the games, and allowed us to go back and replay past games with some basic (but useful) annotations. I loved having it for my students, as it gave me an easy way to show them games quickly during our lessons.
Now, there's an app for the World Champion himself. Magnus Carlsen has launched an app for iOS phones that allows users to play against computers program to play like Carlsen at various ages. Fair warning, though: Carlsen was a grandmaster even at age 13, so most of us will have to play against him as a toddler (or not too long after) to have a chance.
Happy New Year! Here's what you may have missed that's been added to the site during January:
As always, let me know if there's something you'd like to see in February!
Levon Aronian lost his final game at the 2014 Tata Steel to Loek van Wely, but it hardly mattered. Aronian was on fire for the previous two weeks, winning six games and coasting to victory, having clinched the tournament title with a round to spare. Ultimately, Aronian still secured a great 8/11 score and won the tournament by 1.5 points over Anish Giri and Sergey Karjakin. It was an emphatic victory for the Armenian, who put a wide gulf between himself and the rest of the elite chess players on the ratings list. Sure, Magnus Carlsen is still the clear #1 at 2872, but Aronian is now the undisputed #2, having pushed his rating up to around 2825. With nobody else over 2790, it seems likely that Carlsen and Aronian will be the top two players in the world for some time to come.
When it comes to Wijk aan Zee, the B group (known as the Challengers section this year) is also worthy of attention. This year, the title went to GM Ivan Saric, who will earn an entry into the A tournament next year as a result of his 10/13 score. Perhaps just as notable was the result of veteran Jan Timman, who scored an impressive second place with 8.5 points.
Next up on the elite chess calender, there are two major events starting this week: the popular Gibraltar Open and the Zurich Chess Challenge, which will see Carlsen back in action for the first time since the World Championship.