"Daisy, Daisy, give me your answer do. I'm half crazy all for the love of you. It won't be a stylish marriage, I can't afford a carriage. But you'll look sweet upon the seat of a bicycle built for two." --HAL, 2001: A Space Odyssey
My old wooden chess board, the one I learned to play on so long ago, is now hanging up on the wall; the carved wooden pieces, a jumble in their box. It sometimes amazes me, the amount of people I come across who never learned to play. Teaching a human mind to play reasonably well takes a keen interest and a lot of practice. A modern computer however, loaded with the right programming, can play at almost grandmaster level without raising a sweat.
Walking around rather bored at the shops yesterday, I thought for a moment that it might be a good idea to get one of those electronic chessboards so that I wouldn't have to bug someone else every time I wanted to have a game or to practice a bit. I then thought it would perhaps be better to get some kind of portable LCD chess game, so that I could carry it around with me, but didn't even know if they even made such a thing.
About five minutes later, after my mind had wandered onto other things, I walked into Tandy Electronics and there, staring me in the face, was an electronic chessboard with a removable docking unit. The perfect combination. Not all that hard to beat on some of its lower levels, though I seem to just now be facing a challenge.
Watching the first part of the Stanley Kubrick documentary A Life In Pictures, I notice him often portrayed as a chess player, both literally as well as in his personality and the way he shoots his films. A great scene in 2001: A Space Odyssey is when HAL plays chess with Frank, defeating him convincingly. What's interesting is that unlike the brute force approach utilised by today's top chess playing computers, HAL's thought patterns seem almost "human". He even conveys his enjoyment of the game, though it could all just be part of his programming.
"Thankyou for a very enjoyable game"