Summary of “Learning Chess at Forty”

I would explain that I too was learning to play, and the resulting tone was cheerily patronizing: Good luck with that! Reading about an international tournament, I was struck by a suggestion that a grandmaster had passed his peak.
Magnus Carlsen, the world’s current top-ranked player, was the youngest player to reach number one, at age 19.
“If you’re talking about two novices,” Charness said, when I asked him about my daughter, me, and chess, “Your daughter would probably pick things up about twice as fast as you could.” My daughter is, in effect, learning chess like a first language, whereas I am learning it like a second language.
After what seemed a particularly disastrous move, I would try to play coach for a moment, and ask: Are you sure that’s what you want to do? She would shrug.
Even if I was only learning chess for the first time, I had a lifetime of play behind me.
Chess, especially played at the top levels, can encompass both fluid and crystallized intelligence-one needs the firepower to quickly think through a novel position, but it also helps to draw upon a deep reservoir of past games.
As Daniel King, a London-based retired professional chess player who now analyzes and commentates chess matches, tells me, “Children just kind of go for it-that kind of confidence can be very disconcerting for the opponent.” Lacking larger representational “Schema,” the psychologist Dianne Horgan has noted, children players rely more on simple heuristics and “Satisficing,” choosing the first good-looking move.
She played, in those games, as if I were just some lower-level chess engine making haplessly random moves.

The orginal article.