Episode 2 – Philosophizing about chess with Peter Svidler

Peter Svidler is the 8-fold Russian chess champion and one of the most likeable personalities in chess. His wealth of knowledge and enthusiasm for the game makes for lively conversations. At the same time Svidler is broadly interested, in anything from literature to video games. An engaging guest, to be sure.


1.50 Endgame (TV Series)
5:00 Pawn Sacrifice (Film)
6.30 The obsessive nature of chess players
8.00 Peter’s admiration of Vladimir Kramnik
10.00 Work ethic in chess
17.40 How Peter spices his openings up
18.40 Nakamura – Carlsen Chess960 match
20:45 Discarding classical time controls
24:15 How playing long games is essential to become a better player
25.30 The Pro Chess League
26.50 Deep concentration as a 21st century super power
29.00 Peter’s ideas about learning languages
34.45 Videogames (in specific Hearthstone, WoW, Diablo and Starcraft 2)
38.45 Anthropological research on a society without play and the concept of Homo Ludens (in Dutch)
43.15 Analyzing with Magnus Carlsen
45.30 Post-Mortems
49:30 Some concepts in Nimzowitch’s “My System” being plain wrong
51.15 The Nimzo-Indian
53:00 Peter’s legacy in the GrĆ¼nfeld
56:00 On why top chess players spend 90% of their time on openings
56.45 Comparing Kasparov’s to Carlsen’s approach to openings
1:00:15 Chess Psychology (and performance as related to emotion)
1:02:30 Playing in the candidates
1:13:45 A Perfect Day for Bananafish and how I spuriously relate that to The First Law
1:22:15 Chessbase India
1:23:00 Viswanathan Anand as an icon
1:23:50 The atmoshpere in Wijk aan Zee
1:25:15 Doing commentary with Jan GustafssonĀ  for the candidates on chess24

A final note on language: my plan is to have most podcasts in Dutch, but I trust that this audience does not mind the occasional international guest. Apologies for the (background) noise, this was due to my inexperience of recording over Skype.