The former world chess champion has recently announced KasparovChess, his second attempt at creating a branded chess website after 1999. Though the platform is not yet fully available, pre-registrations are already open, bringing with them their own set of entertaining mishaps.
Kasparovchess and the word ‘pawn’
Enthusiastic chess players looking to register early on to Kasparov’s new chess venture were greeted by an odd sight as they tried to choose their username. Anyone trying to include the word ‘pawn’ in their username were shut down by the automatic profanity filter.
You can see what the creators of the tool were going for. Nevertheless, this is somewhat overkill for a website exclusively focusing on chess. Pawns are, after all, the core pieces in chess, with eight of them on the board for each side representing the lowly peasantry going into battle in front of the higher-valued pieces.
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The subject’s discussion topic on the /r/chess subreddit received almost 4000 upvotes by the time of writing. Eventually, a moderator would confirm that this amusing happenstance was little more than a bug, and it was fixed shortly thereafter.
Garry Kasparov’s chess history
One of the strongest attacking chess players of all time, Garry Kasparov held the world championship title for fifteen years, becoming the youngest player in the history of the game to take the crown in 1985 until his eventual loss to Vladimir Kramnik. His peak ELO rating of 2851 from 1999 remained the highest-ever on record until Magnus Carlsen’s ascent to the summit in 2013. He is still second on the all-time list.
Kasparov was never one to shy away from controversy and has consistently challenged the authorities throughout his career, first the Soviet political machine that lined up behind Anatoly Karpov for their five consecutive championship matches, then the world chess federation (FIDE) itself, initiating a schism in 1993 and forming his own association – something he now looks back on as one of the biggest mistakes in his career.
Having retired from competitive chess in 2005 after once again winning the prestigious Linares event, he’s become more and more involved with the world of Russian politics as a notable individual in opposition to Putin. He is currently the chairman of the Human Rights Foundation.
Kasparov’s monumental body of work in the chess world still resonates today. His My Great Predecessors book series is an influential collection of past world champions’ games, and his pioneering entries into the world of decision-making and general psychology blended with a chess perspective.