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IN THE NEWS
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THE MORALS OF CHESS BY BENJAMIN FRANKLIN (1750)
The game of Chess is not merely an idle amusement. Several very valuable qualities of the mind, useful in the course of human life, are to be acquired or strengthened by it, so as to become habits, ready on all occasions. For life is a kind of chess, in which we have often points to gain, and competitors or adversaries to contend with, and in which there is a vast variety of good and ill events, that are, in some degree, the effects of prudence or the want of it. Click on the title, and read this remarkable piece!
*A BLAST FROM THE PAST
Moxon’s Master – Automaton Chessplayer
This story may have been inspired by Wolfgang von Kempelen’s remarkable mechanical chess player, which was created in 1770. Incredibly, it beat a number of chess experts in public matches. However, the real genius behind the automaton chess player was an assistant concealed inside the cabinet. This famous story was written by Ambrose Bierce in 1910. In it, you encounter the first chess playing automaton – a fully automated chess machine. You also first encounter the problems that humans have when they face superior machines.
At a Brooklyn School, the Cool Crowd Pushes the King Around
By ANNE BARNARD and DYLAN LOEB McCLAIN
Chess dominates the culture at Intermediate School 318, where most students come from families with incomes below the federal poverty level.