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I thought I would share with our chess-loving readers the following interesting (and somewhat well-known) mathematical chess paradox , apparently proving that 64=65, and the accompanying explanation offered by Prof. Christian Hesse, University of Stuttgart (Germany).  It shows a curious connection between the well-known Cassini’s identity (related to Fibonacci numbers) and the 8 \times 8 chessboard (8 being a Fibonacci number!). The connection can be exploited further to come up with similar paradoxes wherein any F_n \times F_n -square can always be “rerranged” to form a F_{n-1} \times F_{n+1} -rectangle such that the difference between their areas is either +1 or -1. Of course, for the curious reader there are plenty of such dissection problems listed in Prof David Eppstein’s Dissection page.

Less than a couple of months ago, we heard of the (untimely) death of Bobby Fischer, undoubtedly the greatest chess player who ever lived on earth. For a lot of people, in his later years he was a raving arrogant “lunatic.” But few people knew/know about his human side, which was brought out in a moving eulogy on Fischer, by Dick Cavett, titled Was It Only a Game? written for The New York Times. The accompanying video in that article shows how “normal” Fischer was, just like you and me.

Here is a wonderful video of Fischer as a 15-yr old kid appearing in a game show I’ve Got a Secret.

The following is a casual interview in which Fischer smiles and laughs as never seen before.

And here is a short documentary on Fischer’s world championship match with Boris Spassky in 1972 and how he beat the gargantuan Soviet chess machine.

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March 2023