Arpad Elo

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Arpad Emrick Elo (born Élő Árpád Imre, August 25, 1903 – November 5, 1992) is the creator of the Elo rating system for two-player games such as chess. Born in Egyházaskesző, Hungary, he moved to the United States with his parents as a child in 1913.

Elo was a professor of physics at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. He was also a chess master. By the 1930s he was the strongest chess player in Milwaukee, one of the nation's leading chess cities. He won the Wisconsin State Championship eight times.Andrew Soltis, "What's Your Elo?", Chess Life, July 1993, p. 19.

Elo died in Brookfield, Wisconsin in 1992.

The Elo rating system

Elo is best known for his system of rating chess players. The original chess rating system was developed in 1950 by Kenneth Harkness, the Business Manager of the United States Chess Federation. By 1960, using the data developed through the Harkness Rating System, Elo developed his own formula which had a sound statistical basis and constituted an improvement on the Harkness System. The new rating system was approved and passed at a meeting of the United States Chess Federation in St. Louis in 1960.

In 1970, FIDE, the World Chess Federation, agreed to adopt the Elo Rating System. From then on until the mid-1980s, Elo himself made the rating calculations. At the time, the computational task was relatively easy because fewer than 2000 players were rated...
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