A round up and summary of the third annual Lichess meetup, hackathon, and chess tournament
From the 14th to 18th February, 12 Lichess developers and staff members met up in Oslo, Norway (not Minnesota). With five nations represented, it was great to meet each other in person while discussing future Lichess challenges and developing new fixes. There were also plenty of opportunities to play lots of chess, with bughouse becoming the most played variant amongst the Lichess team in breaks between other work.
GM Magnus Carlsen v Prune2000
The highlight of the weekend was an over the board 7-round Swiss tournament, in the blitz 5+0 time control, held at the Sjakklubben Stjernen, one of several chess clubs in Oslo. A surprise visitor was the current World Champion, Magnus Carlsen, who faced down strong opposition to secure first place. Titled competitors included GM Frode Urkedal, FM Anders Hobber, FM Inge Skrondal, and FM Alexander Pena-Riascos, as well as (and not least) two LMs - Askild Bryn, and Asbjørn Steinskog. In total, the top 10 boards had an average rating of 2258, making this a fiercely fought blitz tournament.
For the top 3 boards, prizes were offered in the form of Lichess swag, so well done to 1st: GM Magnus Carlsen (7/7); 2nd: GM Frode Urkedal (6/7); and 3rd: Francisco Gonzales (5/7), as well as every other participant. Full results can be found here.
The Lichess OTB blitz tournament had excellent turn out.
On the left hand side, from foreground to background: revoof, MagicAndy (versus Assios), Cynosure, Aliquantus.
Competitors tackling it out.
The Lichess team had the opportunity to be soundly beaten by the chess community of Oslo.
During the weekend, a number of projects were worked on, covering fixes that might not be immediately noticeable or detectable, projects that may never see the light of day, and looking at future challenges and issues with lichess.
Some of the lichess team enjoying aperitifs and appetisers (left to right, clockwise): arex, Cynosure, MagicAndy, Assios, the back of Prune2000's head, the back of revoof's head.
Playing bughouse on the last night.
The team also updated the about page, as well as developing a press kit, to help Lichess staff handle the most common requests for information, and to share with the media.
Some general statistics from the meetup include:
French style roast chicken
As in previous years, the meetup was a considerable success. Meeting and putting faces to names and online handles is always a fun occasion, and as with previous occasions productivity was bolstered by sharing the same office space. Meeting the great chess community and being able to host an over the board tournament was incredibly enjoyable for the entire team, in what the team are quickly referring to as "IRLichess". It is a tradition we hope to continue in the future, and for our next meetup - although we may aim for warmer weather next time! (Maybe the Gibraltar Open?)
The last chess game (for now), played in Oslo airport