Tom Standage has written the history of a mechanical chess player that was so successful that people referred to it as "The Turk." Two hundred and thirty-five years ago, Wolfgang von Kempelen put together this machine that looked like a Turkish man seated at a desk with an arm raised over a chessboard. Von Kempelen had his machine play chess with Empress Maria Theresa of Austria, Catherine the Great of Russia, and other famous opponents.
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