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Think Like a Machine by Noam Manella and Zeev Zohar

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Digital Version Available from Forward Chess (read more)

Now available in paperback

With the ascent of computer technology, humans have a chance to develop their thinking process based on hard evidence. Think Like a Machine explores human limitations and proposes new avenues for human thinking, inspired by computer engines.

In positions taken almost exclusively from modern tournament play, the authors present jaw-dropping continuations which humans struggle to find, not due to lower human computing power, due to conceptual and perceptual limitations. In this book these “crazy” moves are analysed and categorised. If you want to expand your chess imagination, understanding and intuition, Think Like a Machine is the book is for you.

Think Like A Machine is the second chess book co-written by Noam Manella and Zeev Zohar. Manella is a digital and Social Networks Researcher; Zohar is an accountant and businessman. Their previous book, Play Unconventional Chess and Win, was a highlight in chess publishing in 2014.

Runner-up in the FIDE Book of the Year 2021

248 pages

Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-78483-108-0  Published 15 July 2020
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-78483-107-3  Published 9 June 2021

Reviews

"Think Like a Machine is an ambitious work that aims to learn chess skills from machines: 'It's time for another leap in human thinking'!

I enjoyed the fireworks inside the book greatly, although it certainly wasn't easy work!... this is definitely one for the strong players or the ambitious improving player, but there is a wealth of entertaining and instructive material, and an interesting approach as well! 4 stars!"

GM Matthew Sadler, New in Chess

"Computers have changed chess, of that there can be no doubt... Clearly there is much humans can learn from computers and this is the topic of the new book 'Think Like A Machine'... If you want to stretch your brain cells to look beyond standard candidate moves 'Think Like A Machine' is the book for you."

IM John Donaldson

"One of the more fascinating books I have read this year is this book by two authors I had never previously heard about. The two Israeli authors explore stunning opportunities that were missed by the players but uncovered through computer analysis.

In this work, the authors dive into various parts of the game: the attack, the defense, the endgame, and after giving us dozens of examples, they test us in the last chapter with a variety of exercises.

***** (5/5)"

Carsten Hansen, American Chess Magazine

"Think like a Machine is vividly written and contains a good variety of modern chess games and classics. In addition, the inserts, where strong chess players and/or AI experts elaborate on the relationship between humans and computers, provide a pleasant and lively reading experience. In a general sense, the book is about imagination, fantasy, understanding and the formation of intuition. The authors prompt the reader to reconsider the conventions on which our chess decisions are based. The analyses from the book are not only an entertaining and unique experience in themselves, but also clearly show that we must dare to use our creative abilities even more often to eventually broaden our chess horizon. We can learn a lot from the engine's moves, and the authors' given categorization seems to be a nice addition to traditional search methods.

It challenges you to look creatively and outside the usual frameworks, something that certainly makes the game of chess more fun!"

Jasper Dekker, Schaaksite.nl (full review in Dutch)

Now available in paperback

With the ascent of computer technology, humans have a chance to develop their thinking process based on hard evidence. Think Like a Machine explores human limitations and proposes new avenues for human thinking, inspired by computer engines.

In positions taken almost exclusively from modern tournament play, the authors present jaw-dropping continuations which humans struggle to find, not due to lower human computing power, due to conceptual and perceptual limitations. In this book these “crazy” moves are analysed and categorised. If you want to expand your chess imagination, understanding and intuition, Think Like a Machine is the book is for you.

Think Like A Machine is the second chess book co-written by Noam Manella and Zeev Zohar. Manella is a digital and Social Networks Researcher; Zohar is an accountant and businessman. Their previous book, Play Unconventional Chess and Win, was a highlight in chess publishing in 2014.

Runner-up in the FIDE Book of the Year 2021

248 pages

Hardcover ISBN: 978-1-78483-108-0  Published 15 July 2020
Paperback ISBN: 978-1-78483-107-3  Published 9 June 2021

Reviews

"Think Like a Machine is an ambitious work that aims to learn chess skills from machines: 'It's time for another leap in human thinking'!

I enjoyed the fireworks inside the book greatly, although it certainly wasn't easy work!... this is definitely one for the strong players or the ambitious improving player, but there is a wealth of entertaining and instructive material, and an interesting approach as well! 4 stars!"

GM Matthew Sadler, New in Chess

"Computers have changed chess, of that there can be no doubt... Clearly there is much humans can learn from computers and this is the topic of the new book 'Think Like A Machine'... If you want to stretch your brain cells to look beyond standard candidate moves 'Think Like A Machine' is the book for you."

IM John Donaldson

"One of the more fascinating books I have read this year is this book by two authors I had never previously heard about. The two Israeli authors explore stunning opportunities that were missed by the players but uncovered through computer analysis.

In this work, the authors dive into various parts of the game: the attack, the defense, the endgame, and after giving us dozens of examples, they test us in the last chapter with a variety of exercises.

***** (5/5)"

Carsten Hansen, American Chess Magazine

"Think like a Machine is vividly written and contains a good variety of modern chess games and classics. In addition, the inserts, where strong chess players and/or AI experts elaborate on the relationship between humans and computers, provide a pleasant and lively reading experience. In a general sense, the book is about imagination, fantasy, understanding and the formation of intuition. The authors prompt the reader to reconsider the conventions on which our chess decisions are based. The analyses from the book are not only an entertaining and unique experience in themselves, but also clearly show that we must dare to use our creative abilities even more often to eventually broaden our chess horizon. We can learn a lot from the engine's moves, and the authors' given categorization seems to be a nice addition to traditional search methods.

It challenges you to look creatively and outside the usual frameworks, something that certainly makes the game of chess more fun!"

Jasper Dekker, Schaaksite.nl (full review in Dutch)



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