In the Integrative Neuroscience Laboratory, a consortium of the Neuroscience Laboratory at Universidad Torcuato Di Tella (Argentina) and Applied Artificial Intelligence Laboratory at University of Buenos Aires (Argentina), we are interested in understanding the structure of the cognition. In one of the projects, we are using chess as a tool to approach this topic. We have published a research work with data from FICS database about several aspects of chess playing:
    • Mariano Sigman, Pablo Etchemendy, Diego Fernandez Slezak and Guillermo A. Cecchi, Response time distributions in rapid chess: a  large-scale decision making experiment, Frontiers in Neuroscience, vol 4, 2010. [link]
    • Diego Fernandez Slezak and Mariano Sigman, Do not fear your opponent: Suboptimal changes of a prevention strategy when facing stronger opponents, Journal of Experimental Psychology, 141(3), 2011. [link]
    • Maria Juliana Leone, Agusti­n Petroni, Diego Fernandez Slezak, and Mariano Sigman, The tell-tale heart: heart rate fluctuations index objective and subjective events during a game of chess, Frontiers in human neuroscience 6, 2012. [link]
    • Maria Juliana Leone, Diego Fernandez Slezak, Guillermo A. Cecchi, and Mariano Sigman, The geometry of expertise, Frontiers in psychology 5, 2014. [link]
We are currently starting a project about diurnal variations (chronobiology) in chess performance in colaboration with the Chronobiology Laboratory of National University of Quilmes (in Buenos Aires, Argentina).

The general question is if we play chess better at some specific times of day. We can obtain data from FICS database regarding when a game was played (the server time), but we need to know the time zone where the player is located. With this information we can study diurnal variations in chess performance. 

If you would like to share this information with us, please enter your FICS handle (nickname) and your timezone. Absolute confidentiality and anonymity is strictly ensured.

Thanks in advance!

Maria Juliana Leone, PhD. Email:

(I was also a tournament chess player some years ago, and maybe we were playing some blitz together in FICS!)

In addition, it would help to know your time preferences (i.e., chronotype, which defines whether you are a morning or an evening person). If you would like to fill out the chronotype questionnaire, it would certainly help us a lot for the project.