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Mind Sport Mashup: Learning from Robotics and Chess

Photos provided by the SLSRA

By Anuraag, student participant


When I was at the St. Louis Student Robotics Association’s “Mind Sport Mashup,” I got the opportunity to play an amazing chess player.  I had a very fun experience playing the Grandmaster from the Saint Louis Chess Club; even though he was significantly more skilled than me, I still think I put up a pretty good fight. All fun aside, when I saw that there was going to be a robotics and chess expo at SLU, I started thinking about how robotics and chess were related. There are many things that chess and robotics have in common, such as strategy, time management, and patience.



One of the main ways to be successful in robotics is having a plan. You need to have a plan going into the competition so that you know what you want to accomplish and how you want to complete the task at hand. Chess includes the same concept, since you have to go into a game knowing how you want to play the basics of an opening before carrying it out so you can be successful in your game. In robotics, you must have time management, so that you can finish your robot and program in time for the competition. In chess, you must study different positions and different openings so that you can play against someone with full strength and put up a fight. Lastly, you need patient to be successful in robotics and chess. In robotics, you need to be able to have patience when your code isn't going the way you want or you make a mistake while building, but you also need to know that as long as you keep pushing for the win, you will succeed in the end. In chess, you need to be able to study for long periods of time and sit in front of a board while playing a game for up to a few hours. In the end, chess is a game where if you keep going for the win and putting all your strength forward then you can turn a losing position into a draw or even a win.