Tuesday, 25 August 2009

How Can I Beat Kasparov's Evans Gambit? - Search On AltaVista Apparently

A commercial for AltaVista.com showing Garry Kasparov conducting a chess simul.

"How Can I Beat Kasparov's Evans Gambit?"

An improbable scenario but interesting nevertheless.

Sunday, 16 August 2009

Can Tom Baker (The 4th Dr Who) Play Chess?

Tom Baker @ Book Signing:
[Who on Earth is Tom Baker? (ISBN 0-00-638854-X)]

I have just posted on 'ALCHEssMIST Chess' (here) the scene from Doctor Who where K9 plays chess against The Doctor (Tom Baker). Surprisingly, The Doctor makes an illegal move 1. Qd2-d4, as the white queen is pinned against the white king by K9's (black) queen on c2. The only legal move for the white queen is 1. Qxc2. See chess position below with white to move.

This simple error in chess rules is surprising. I suspect that Tom simply did as was suggested by the director. Then again, maybe the error was deliberate so as to provoke a response by the "anorak community". I was going to say "geek community", but the modern use of the term "geek" had not been invented 32 years ago (1977).

So Tom Baker can you play chess?

General Doctor Who fans, "The Sisterhood", chess anoraks, miscellaneous geeks and pedants would like to know the answer. A voice over answer on a future episode of Little Britain or further guest appearance on the quiz show Have I Got News For You would be ideal.

Image Credit - crop of image by Phil Guest on Flickr (cc).

Posted by ALCHEssMIST.

Sunday, 2 August 2009

Nietzsche - What Does Not Kill Him, Makes Him Stronger.

Friedrich Nietzsche (1844-1900):

"What does not kill him, makes him stronger."
"Was ihn nicht umbringt, macht ihn stärker

This quote comes from - Friedrich Nietzsche's (1844-1900) last original book - Ecce Homo: How One Becomes What One Is (German: Ecce homo: Wie man wird, was man ist). Although Ecce Homo: was written in 1888, it was not published until 1908, a period of 8 years after Nietzsche's death. Nietzsche was a very influential 19th century philosopher and philologist from Germany, whose written works are well worth reading.

So why is ALCHEssMIST quoting Nietzsche?

Well, ALCHEssMIST wishes to give a heartfelt thanks to the "unknown agent(s)" [;^)] who recently created some problems with this site. As a result, ALCHEssMIST has learned a great deal about that which he did not understand before. Those readers who check this blog from time-to-time will note some changes. Some of these changes are as a direct result of the problems alluded to above. Other changes on this site reflect the multidimensional character that is ALCHEssMIST.

Posted by ALCHEssMIST the Gamesman.