BTW, at the Columbus Chess Club last night I helped a guy named Paul Chestnut use his new chess computer. This thing is pretty interesting. It typically sells for about $450. The board can sense where you move the pieces. Want to start a new game? Just set the pieces back to the beginning. Want to take back one or more moves? Just move in reverse. You can take back the computer's move and play a different move for the computer, which might be useful if you want to play against a specific opening, or if you want to analyze.
There are circular lights under each square that highlight where the computer wants to move.
The pieces are the same size as my nice $35 chess pieces, although my pieces aren't as tall as some brands. The board is just barely smaller than a standard tournament board, which makes for a pleasant playing experience. The pieces and the board seem like they are made of lightweight plastic. The pieces don't have much weight to them except that I think that they have a magnet on the bottom. Underneath the board, there is no covering over the electronics that sense the movement of the pieces, so overall this device feels cheaply made.
There is a small screen that shows what position the computer thinks is on the board, which is helpful in case something got mixed up. It can also display a chess clock.
All the brains seem to be on the narrow right side panel. I suspect that it is using something equivalent to a phone processor, or maybe something cheaper. It is running Stockfish, which potentially makes it a very strong chess computer.
Unfortunately, it only has 3 modes of difficulty. There is "Friendly" that tries to automatically adjust to your level, however, Paul and I playing together lost to this mode. There is "Challenge" that tries to be tougher, and then there is "Expert". Given that it is running Stockfish, this "Expert" mode probably plays like a strong Grandmaster or better. The Stockfish program running on a desktop computer is far better than any human player.
An ideal chess program would allow you to set the playing ability by ELO rating, which for computers can go up to about 3600. My rating is around 2000. Magnus Carlsen is rated 2847. Ideally, it could also go down to zero.