M2M Day 349: Watch me checkmate my opponent in 12 moves

This post is part of Month to Master, a 12-month accelerated learning project. For October, my goal is to defeat world champion Magnus Carlsen at a game of chess.

Today, I didn’t have time to write any more chess code. So, for today’s post, I figured I’d share the other part of my preparations: The actually games.

Of course, my approach this month has a mostly all or nothing flavor (either I can effectively execute a very strong chess algorithm in my brain, or I can’t), but I’m still playing real chess games on the side to improve my ability to implement this algorithm.

In particular, I’ve been practicing 1. Picking the right moves to evaluate and 2. Playing the right moves without the algorithm when I’m 100% confident.

Recently though, I’ve also been practicing my attacking abilities. In other words, I’ve been trying to aggressively checkmate my opponent’s King during the middle game (compared to my typical approach of exchanging pieces and trying to win in the end game).

Here are three games from today or yesterday that demonstrate my newly aggressive approach. To watch the sped-up playback of the games, click on the picture of the chessboard of the game you want to watch and then click the play button.

Game 1 — I play White and get Black’s Queen on move 15.

Game 2— I play Black and checkmate White in 12 moves

Game 3 — I play White and checkmate Black in 26 moves

These games aren’t perfect. I still make a few major mistakes per game, and so do my opponents.

In fact, this is one of the biggest challenges with Chess.com: I’m only matched with real people of a similar skill level, which isn’t optimally conducive to improving.

But, I’m still able to test out my new ideas in this environment, while relying on the algorithmic part of my approach for the larger-scale improvements.

Tomorrow, I should hopefully have some time to make more algorithmic progress…

Read the next post. Read the previous post.

Max Deutsch is an obsessive learner, product builder, and guinea pig for Month to Master.

If you want to follow along with Max’s year-long accelerated learning project, make sure to follow this Medium account.