Two new studies, one in Science and one in PLoS One, which were released in the last few days, delve into how experts at chess and other board games process information and generate the ideas for their moves.
The PLoS One study by researchers in Germany found that chess experts use both sides of their brain to quickly identify pieces. The study was an outgrowth of one from November 2010 in the Journal of Experimental Psychology on how pattern recognition and object identification are separate cognitive processes in chess experts’ brains.
The study in Science, which was conducted by researchers in Japan, sought to identify which parts of the brains of shogi experts produce the suggested moves to solve problems. What the researchers found surprised them as part of the idea-generation was from a sub-cortical region of the brain.
Both studies showed that expertise is developed in the brain â€” it is not an innate ability.
More about the studies is in an article in Science.