When I was a teenager, I became obsessed with chess and I decided to dedicate my life to chess, but my beloved chess teacher Emili Burgues told me that the life of a chess player can be very difficult. I decided to become a scientist, but I realized that there are many fascinating things in life and having other interests like chess would not only make me happy, but would also provide a good complement to my scientific career. Since then I have seen multiple times some parallels between chess and science, for instance in the heuristic nature of the principles followed to play chess games, to design the synthesis of organic compounds or to assign the nuclear magnetic resonances of a protein. Later I also became interested in Chinese chess (Xiangqi), which I find equally captivating as Western chess.
For those interested in Western chess and Chinese chess, you can find here two problems that illustrate the beauty that can be reached by human intellect. On the left, black plays to win. On the right, red plays and wins.