On Friday, October 29 (4-5 p.m.), I gave a 30-minute lecture about chess ratings and international titles. The handouts "Calculating ratings" and "International Titles and USCF ratings" are available on the Denton High School Chess Club Web site. One question we discussed is whether an amateur chess player has a better chance to defeat a Grandmaster at chess than an amateur swimmer has to beat an Olympic swimmer in a swim race.

This question reprised a 1998 debate I had with my sister Sarah, who swam in the Olympic Trials back in the 1980s. What do you think? I also showed the 6-minute long University of Texas at Dallas Chess Program DVD, obtained on our October 15 field trip.Our next field trip will be to participate in a chess tournament at the beginning of 2011. The second half of today‚Äôs chess club was for leftover ladder games or playing chess for fun.