Programmable logic controllers are usually used in industrial and manufacturing settings. Because the controllers are programmed to reason and think with logic, they can be used in other capacities. Recently, exploration into the world of chess using PLC's as part of the super chess computers' construction lead chess players and chess masters to conclude that it was possible to be beat by artificial intelligence. Really, it was the sum total of downloaded logic programming that made it easy for computers to beat chess players. For some of the most notable chess games, here they are.
Deep Blue, the First Logical Supercomputer
When the engineers at a certain computer manufacturing company first decided to design a programmable logic system to play chess, they never quite imagined what Deep Blue has become. Chess is a game that requires logical thought. If one player moves a piece one way, there are only so many counter moves, and only one move that will bring the computer closer to winning. As a PLC, Deep Blue has been programmed to win through applied logic and downloaded chess data. This is just a small example of what any PLC can accomplish with the right scientists and engineers behind it.
Building Your Own Chess Computer
Although you could buy the parts, including an Eaton PLC, and attempt to build your own chess computer, it would take you decades to design, engineer, draft and build it. The team that built Deep Blue were continuously updating the computer's components and system, which can only be done if the computer is already built. If you get some professional help and raise the funds, it will be easier to reproduce results similar to Deep Blue and begin playing chess against your version within a few years.
Building Supercomputers with PLC's to Play Other Logic Games
Many games require some basic concept of logic and/or strategy. A chess computer is impressive because it is one of the most difficult logic games to play. You could, theoretically, build a supercomputer that defeats a human in every match against some other game that leaves little room for chance, like checkers or specific video games.
Stretch Your Thinking
A PLC can do much more, if you really stretch your thinking and create something no one has thought of before in the computing world. Many components of a PLC fit into a box construction. If you use the entire PLC, what you create could really take the world of computing in new directions, why not try this out!