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Is magnus carlsen the greatest human player ever?

Posted: Sat May 11, 2019 11:26 pm
by S.Taylor
He seems to have all the skills of chess history,
and does all the right things in all positions and time controls, automatically.
A few years ago it had seemed that kasparov was the greatest in history, however, he may have had slightly lower perfection (slightly impulsive? lucky with mistakes?) as maybe seen in some analyzed games, even whilst being the greatest in history before carlsen.

Re: Is magnus carlsen the greatest human player ever?

Posted: Tue May 14, 2019 5:47 am
by Necromancer
Given his Rating x achievements x age, I think that is a big YES. The fact that he is from the "computer era" just reinforces this.

Re: Is magnus carlsen the greatest human player ever?

Posted: Fri May 17, 2019 3:47 am
by Leo
If its true (I don't think it is) then the guy he beat after 12 draws and no wins must be the second best ever. Could you imagine Bobby Fischer drawing 12 straight games with no wins in his prime against someone in a championship match?

Re: Is magnus carlsen the greatest human player ever?

Posted: Fri May 17, 2019 8:53 pm
by Necromancer
Leo wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 3:47 am
If its true (I don't think it is) then the guy he beat after 12 draws and no wins must be the second best ever. Could you imagine Bobby Fischer drawing 12 straight games with no wins in his prime against someone in a championship match?
Like engines, human players also evolve. Carlsen plays stronger chess than prime Fischer.

Re: Is magnus carlsen the greatest human player ever?

Posted: Sat May 18, 2019 11:40 pm
by Leo
Necromancer wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 8:53 pm
Leo wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 3:47 am
If its true (I don't think it is) then the guy he beat after 12 draws and no wins must be the second best ever. Could you imagine Bobby Fischer drawing 12 straight games with no wins in his prime against someone in a championship match?
Like engines, human players also evolve. Carlsen plays stronger chess than prime Fischer.
How do you know that? Fischer would easily defeat Carlson with the aid of a computer for preparation. So would Karpov and Kasparov in their prime. Carlson is not as far ahead of the rest as Fischer was.

Re: Is magnus carlsen the greatest human player ever?

Posted: Sun May 19, 2019 11:21 pm
by Leo

Re: Is magnus carlsen the greatest human player ever?

Posted: Wed May 22, 2019 7:55 pm
by duncan
Leo wrote:
Sat May 18, 2019 11:40 pm
Necromancer wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 8:53 pm
Leo wrote:
Fri May 17, 2019 3:47 am
If its true (I don't think it is) then the guy he beat after 12 draws and no wins must be the second best ever. Could you imagine Bobby Fischer drawing 12 straight games with no wins in his prime against someone in a championship match?
Like engines, human players also evolve. Carlsen plays stronger chess than prime Fischer.
How do you know that? Fischer would easily defeat Carlson with the aid of a computer for preparation. So would Karpov and Kasparov in their prime. Carlson is not as far ahead of the rest as Fischer was.
Karpov is 'just' no 7.


Fischer' was facing spassky a 27. kasparov was facing karpov a 7. Maybe that accounts for fischer being more ahead in one particular year than kasparov. Similarly with Carlson.

http://www.chessmetrics.com/cm/CM2/Peak ... 0000010100


http://www.chessmetrics.com/cm/CM2/Peak ... 0000010100

Re: Is magnus carlsen the greatest human player ever?

Posted: Sun May 26, 2019 12:42 am
by BigBazza
He is a truly awesome player, best ever? that's a tough one. I would have loved to witness Magness vs Kasparov when he was at his peak. I think he was such a formidable presence it would have been an epic battle

Re: Is magnus carlsen the greatest human player ever?

Posted: Sun May 26, 2019 11:21 pm
by Ovyron
It's not a question as though as it seems. They made a study about the the general quality of chess players in history, and found out that there's a very strong correlation between the elo of their era and the elo of the current time. So, apparently, if you went and teleported a 2500 rating player to the past to play another 2500 rated player, they'd have a 50% performance against each other.

So their rating can be used to predict their results. Also, you can take a look at their moves and predict their ratings.

Which means that the record holder of elo rating in the history of chess would be capable of time traveling to the past and hold that performance against any opponent.

According to this, yes, Magnus Carlsen is the strongest human (greatest human? how do you measure grandness? I think Paul Morphy would win this one) player ever. And we're talking about move quality, which means, he'd be able to beat everyone passing moves anonymously, without opening preparation and such.

A more interesting question is the opposite, though, talking about potential. What if one of those strong players of the past was brought to our time and given one year to "update" to current theory and such, and THEN faced Magnus Carlsen? THEN, it's possible Magnus wasn't the best in history, as after one year someone from the past could examine his games, adapt, and beat him, but he'd only become the strongest human player ever, after a long chain of "IFs" (including resurrection and time travel...)

And who would be this guy?

My money is on José Raúl Capablanca, he'd be capable of learning how Magnus wins games, avoid those kinds of positions, hold his own in a bunch of drawn games, then beat Magnus is the positions he'd know Magnus is weak at (by examining his loses.) Then again, this would require taking Magnus by surprise, like, suddenly he has to play all those games against unknown opponent. Warn Magnus that he'll have to play Zombie Capablanca in a year and have him prepare for the match, then, who knows?

In principle, this is a strange question. Maybe one day it can be answered by building AI that imitates past chess players perfectly, but until then, resurrection and time travel makes little sense to discuss.