The largest chess site on the Internet has a very large number of users

With the game’s resurgence in popularity, Chess.com is making 16,000 moves per second, which is way too many for its servers.

There are many sites for simulating chess online, but for years, one site has attracted far more users than the others: Chess.com. On December 31, 2022 alone, more than seven million people have connected to the site to play. The number continued to grow each day throughout the month of January, and as of January 20, 2022, there were ten million daily users on the site. The Chess.com app has been among the top downloads in the “Top Free Games” section of the iOS App Store for weeks in many countries, including the United States.

The massive influx of new users is partly due to the renewed interest in chess (both online and offline) that has emerged around the world following the release of the TV series. Chess Queen on Netflix in 2020, and in part to several features introduced by Chess.com itself, such as the ability to play against a ruthless bot represented by a cat avatar. However, this overcrowding puts the servers of the site in a very difficult situation, which was initially created to host a much smaller number than this: very often, people trying to connect to the site find themselves facing an error page, and those who play that the match is paused for reasons Artistic.

The Chess.com team has published a long statement stating that they are doing everything they can to fix these issues, which have been reported by many. But he also said that adding new servers is not enough, because the site’s architecture as it was initially created needs to be rethought to make it “scalable”, i.e. responding instantly and effortlessly to any sudden surges of interest, users and workloads.

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– Also read: The little cat that everyone wants to play chess against

“These days we’re taking scalability issues to a whole new level,” the statement says. “Over 250,000 new accounts are created every day. People play a lot: at 16,000 moves per second. People add friends. They comment, chat and share great information about chess. All this generates data that needs to be written into our databases. Sometimes, just as it happens When someone overtrains and needs to stop and catch their breath, our servers also run out of steam and they need to catch up. When this happens, they stop working and our site and apps become unresponsive. It’s a huge shame, and unfortunately, there’s nothing “quick” we can do to fix it “. The site confirmed that it is working on a fix, but also told users that it will take some time to actually update their technology.

The company also tried to provide its own interpretation oftremendous interest that the game of chess began two years ago, after several decades marked by a certain general disinterest in the discipline. An often cited factor is the release of the highly successful Netflix series Chess Queenwhich piqued the interest of millions of people at the beginning of the pandemic, just as many found themselves having to look for new hobbies to practice.

than release Chess Queen But almost three years have passed, during which interest in this game only increased. According to Chess.com, this success is “a combination of the many things that have driven interest and media attention in chess that have come together in one great wave.”

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One, according to the site’s administrators, is the fact that One of the most popular posts From the Instagram story is a photo from 2022 where famous soccer players Lionel Messi and Cristiano Ronaldo are bent over playing chess (for a Louis Vuitton ad). Another is the scandal involving Hans Niemann, a 19-year-old American who climbed the world rankings very quickly, defeating the world chess champion Magnus Carlsen in a very suspicious way, and who, according to an investigation by Chess.com, systematically cheated. To beat champions of this level.

– Also read: How can you cheat in chess

But there are also many phenomena that have developed on the Internet that have revived the interest of many people precisely in Chess.com, which, although undoubtedly larger, is not the only platform where chess can be played against a computer or against other users. Online. One is the introduction, in early January, of the ability to play against the Mittens, a robot with an avatar attached to an innocent kitten nonetheless designed to beat opponents in particularly sinister ways. Trying to beat Mitts – who has shown himself capable of winning even against some of the best professional players in the world – or at least elicit particularly funny responses after being hit has become a common occurrence for thousands of people, including many streamers, i.e. those who They show their games live on specific video games on platforms like Twitch or YouTube.

Also thanks to live streaming, which is a popular form of entertainment especially among teens, 20-somethings, and people who are passionate about video games, another challenge revolving around chess in one form or another has also returned to popularity: “chess.” by Chess.com as one of the phenomena that attract new users to their site. Chess was invented in 2003 by the Dutch artist Ebbe Rubing, and it is a combined sport in which two people take turns playing a round of chess and boxing several times. Last December, YouTuber Ludwig Ahgren – one of the world’s most famous streamers, also known as “Ludwig” – organized in Los Angeles The biggest event in chess At all times, recorded in the live broadcast. It is followed by half a million users on the Internet.

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Maggie Benson

"Bacon trailblazer. Certified coffee maven. Zombie lover. Tv specialist. Freelance communicator."

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