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Ideas. Insights. Inspiration.

When I Play Chess...

I like to play chess. I taught my two oldest kids to play, and they've become quite good. But they're not always willing and able to indulge their Dad in a game, and since I don't know many other people who like to play, I usually end up playing via a Chess app on my phone, against the computer's Artificial Intelligence (A.I.).

Sometimes, I'll turn the A.I. up to the highest level. It's not impossible to win a game of chess against a decent A.I., but you usually need to play a near flawless game in order to do so. When I do this, I tend to lose. But it trains me to think about each of my decisions carefully, identify potential traps, and understand the longer-term implications of every move I make. Sometimes, I'll lower the A.I to the lowest level. When I do this, I can win the game quickly and easily. Why bother? Because sometimes you need an "easy win" to boost your confidence, especially after a few games at the highest level where the A I. has beaten me badly. And sometimes, I'll set the A.I. at a mid level, then intentionally make a few silly moves that cause me to lose a few key pieces early. After I do that, I'm at a severe disadvantage, and most people who might observe my game would think there's no possible way I could win. Why would I do this? Because coming back from behind to win the game when everybody else thinks the game is over is a pretty useful life skill to develop, wouldn't you say?


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