Tuesday, January 28

Carlsen Meets Technology Leaders

In his first business trip as the 16th World Chess Champion, the Norwegian born Magnus Carlsen rubbed elbows with some of the movers and shakers of the tech boom.  The journey began at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas, where he calmly swept all 20 challengers in a simul organized by Nordic Semiconductor.

Coach Joe Lonsdale (Sr) + Carlsen
Below: Exec Joe Lonsdale (Jr)
The following week, Carlsen flew into the Bay Area for his second visit.  At a social event hosted by Joe Lonsdale, the youthful co-founder of Palantir and Addepar, the champion posed for photos with guests and narrowly defeated local Grandmaster Vinay Bhat in a bullet game.  Check out ChessDryad for photos taken by Richard Shorman.  The next day, Carlsen challenged Facebook founder Mark Zuckerberg after dining with top executives, a game which has been politely described as a lesson.

Lesson with Facebook founder.
However, the most popular event was a Question & Answer session hosted by the tech forum Churchill Club.  Chess master Peter Thiel, perhaps better known for founding PayPal, moderated an exciting discussion that touched on diverse topics, from his recent title match against Vishy Anand to the role of computers in the royal game.  For those unable to attend (like me), the hour long dialog was recorded and uploaded to YouTube (click on video at top).  Highly recomended!

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