21 April 2023
Artificial Intelligence Chess Project
Lower Sixth student Siddhanth Lohia has successfully developed an Artificial Intelligence driven software for visually impaired chess players that players can use to have chess positions on the computer screen read out to them.
Lower Sixth student Siddhanth Lohia has successfully developed an Artificial Intelligence driven software for visually impaired chess players that they can use to have chess positions on the computer screen read out to them.
Chess can be played by the visually impaired at the same level as sighted individuals. However, visually impaired chess players have struggled to keep up with the digitisation of chess and the endless online resources now available for chess training due to the limitations of screen readers.
After being inspired by a video where two of India’s top visually impaired chess players spoke about problems with accessibility, Siddhanth decided to make use of his coding skills to help tackle this issue.
The software uses neural networks coded in Python that have been trained to recognise a chess board and convert the position of chess pieces into chess notation which the visually impaired user could read through their screen reader.
After more than two years of hard work on this project, and having sought feedback from professional chess players who are visually impaired, Siddhanth has made the software free to download from the website of his non-profit organisation https://www.chessforall.in/
The software works with all kinds of chess resources, whether it be applications like ChessBase, websites like Chess.com, or blogs and YouTube videos with chess boards.
This software has the potential to have a tremendous positive impact for visually impaired chess players, making the entire repository of chess knowledge available online more accessible to them.
A huge well done to Siddhanth on this groundbreaking initiative!