1957: First Computer
Alex Bernstein is credited with creating the first complete chess program at MIT and as an IBM employee (more on IBM and chess in the coming pages!). Several other notable computer scientists like Alan Turing helped lay the foundation for computer chess by developing algorithms and processes to evaluate chess positions. But Alan Bernstein's was the first to be able to play a full game. It evaluated the 7 most plausible moves in any given position for material (balance of pieces), king safety, board control, and piece mobility. It calculated to a depth of 4 moves deep. Today's chess "engines" (programs) use complex pruning and evaluation to look more than 30 moves deep, analyzing millions of positions per second!