Mauled by a kitten


The online chess community is having a meltdown over the new chessbot that has as its avatar a cute, saucer-eyed kitten named Mittens. Mittens is rated with an ELO of 1 but that’s a joke because apparently it’s one of the strongest bots ever and chess masters have been posting videos where the frisky feline wipes the floor with them while giggling “hehehehehe” (which I’m pretty sure is a sound that cats don’t make).

I usually don’t even bother playing bots with a higher ranking than 1200, but just because everyone else was doing it I decided to take Mittens on. And I actually survived until move 26 (with two mistakes and one blunder), which I considered a moral victory.

Tempting fate, I tried a second game where I played even worse (three blunders!) but lasted 41 moves. Mittens even gave me a pat on the head: “You have triumphed in existing for longer than many before you. Hehehe. Meow.”

Somehow, this felt even worse.


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