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How to get to 1900 If you know nothing at all about the game of chess other than the rules, there still things that you can do right away to help you win more games. You won't be beating tournament players, but you can rise above your current level by studying the right things. The same principle applies to all levels of players. There are things that you can do immediately to win more games. The key to chess improvement is pattern recognition. Whether you realize it or not, to improve at chess you must reprogram your brain to see things that you did not see before. Recognize Checkmate. The first 112 diagrams at 1w.htm are positions where white can make a move that immediately checkmates. The idea is to place only 2 pawns in the center, unless your opponent can capture them, move the rest of your army into play and then castle either kingside or queenside. As a general rule, you want to move the knights out before the bishops. Learn what tactics are. How to get to 1900
The Evaluation of Material Imbalances in Chess The Evaluation of Material Imbalances in Chess The Evaluation of Material Imbalances by GM Larry Kaufman (reprinted with Larry's permission) - important update from Larry's 2012 repertoire book (first published in Chess Life March 1999; winner "Best Instruction" by the CJA) [Editor's note: I have added comments, in red brackets, and bolded Larry's statements I think represent conclusions/importance. Articles Page - Novice Nooks (articles on chess improvement) Chess Lessons with NM Dan Heisman - NM Dan Heisman's Chess Page Every novice soon learns a table of [DH: "average"] material value for the pieces, the most popular being 1-3-3-5-9, but with a bit more experience he learns that this table is not always reliable. This latter topic has never been addressed comprehensively in the vast literature on chess, to my knowledge. There is one case which can be treated as positional or material, namely the rook's pawn, which differs from other pawns in that it can only capture one way instead of two. OK, what did I discover?
chess articles

In 1999, I spent three days sitting in a variety of thermal baths dotted around Budapest. As grand and attractive as the Hungarian capital's spas are, I wasn't stewing myself for therapeutic or leisure purposes. Instead, I was waiting for someone I'd been told frequented the baths, someone who was said to be a genius and a paranoid obsessive, the greatest chess player who ever lived and an obnoxious crackpot. I was looking for Bobby Fischer. For the last four decades of his life, that's what people did with Fischer – they looked for him. Fans, journalists, biographers, friends, they all tried to find this mythical creature, either in person or in that fabulous abstract realm that he continued to haunt: chess. As with those other great disappearing acts, JD Salinger, Greta Garbo and Howard Hughes, Fischer was almost as well known for his withdrawal from public life as he was for the achievements that brought him fame in the first place. Nothing interrupted his obsession. Bobby Fischer: from prodigy to pariah | Sport | The Observer Bobby Fischer: from prodigy to pariah | Sport | The Observer
Entrepreneurs are crazy, but they change the world | Guardian Small Business Network Entrepreneurs are crazy, but they change the world | Guardian Small Business Network If most of the UK’s startups are being led by people described in the Guardian’s article from an anonymous startup employee, I think that’s something to be celebrated, rather than criticised. As Steve Jobs famously said: “Here’s to the crazy ones … they push the human race forward.” Our experience of entrepreneurs certainly doesn’t chime with that of the author. We deal with new and growing businesses every day, and the founders are overwhelmingly rational, competent and highly experienced. Far from being rudderless or narcissistic, most entrepreneurs are driven by a clear vision and solid purpose. The founders we help to raise finance to grow are more likely to be in their late 30s, rather than 20-something hipsters. Startup founders have to be a little bit crazy to see things differently, chuck in a well-paid job and embrace uncertainty and sacrifice. Jane Ni Dhulchaointigh, founder of Sugru, developed the mouldable glue she invented with the help of two retired scientists.
education articles

Back to School: 3 Question Activities to Connect Students Students learn best when they feel a basic sense of safety. So there is no wiser way to begin a school year, than by taking time to build your students as a caring community of learners and as a problem-solving team. Once they know one-another and begin to feel comfortable and trusting, it’s a lot easier for students to share their answers and questions, help and be helped by their classmates, and become engaged in and excited by the learning process. Here are three sets of activities that have been used widely and well. #1 Student Pairs: What's Your Name? Knowing the names of others in your class, or any ongoing group you are part of, is basic to feeling safe and comfortable. #2 Small Groups: Who Are You? Ask students some questions that will allow them to get to know things about their classmates. What kind of music do you like? Use a timer to give them 30-45 seconds per student to respond. #3 Whole Class: How Many Of You...? (How many of you) play an instrument? Back to School: 3 Question Activities to Connect Students
Informal education: What students are learning outside the classroom Informal education: What students are learning outside the classroom By Annie Murphy Paul This story also appeared at: One thousand hours: That’s approximately the number of instructional hours required of U.S. middle school and high school students each year. Four thousand hours: That’s approximately the number of hours of digital media content U.S. youths aged 8 to 18 absorb each year. Parents, teachers, and education writers, myself included, think a lot about what our students are taught in school, the debate over the Common Core being just the latest example. Greenfield, whose thoughtful writings and pioneering research span the pre-Internet era to the present day, has always been alert to the benefits of engagement with technology. People play video games at a New York game arcade in December 20, 1981. Although we tend to think and talk about “technology” and “media” as undifferentiated monoliths, Greenfield’s work reminds us that each medium has its strengths and weaknesses in conveying information. File photo.
By Amy Ridlehuber Kingsley This summer I set out to boost my EdTech IQ. Education has changed so much since earning my teaching credential 15 years ago. Technology allows students to take a much more active role in education and personalize their learning. Students are able to collaborate with one another wherever and whenever and use apps and websites to review skills taught. As a French teacher, I love that my students can communicate in French outside of the classroom with classmates and native speakers around the world. Here are four things I plan to do differently this year: 1) Take the Paperless Challenge Many of my students lug around backpacks stuffed with wads of paper and smelly gym socks. 2) Utilize Formative Assessment One of my favorite speakers at Edmodocon this summer was Robert Miller, a 5th grade teacher at Port Orange Elementary School in Florida. 3) Flip My Classroom Last year my flipped learning strategies were a huge hit with students! Join me! “Four Things I’ll Do Differently This School Year” : KQED Education | KQED Public Media for Northern CA “Four Things I’ll Do Differently This School Year” : KQED Education | KQED Public Media for Northern CA
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The most thorough, profound and moving defense of Hillary Clinton I have ever seen. First of all — this is not my writing. It's a Facebook post by someone I don’t even know, a man named Michael Arnovitz in Portland OR. But as a Facebook post it passes the fair use test and I’m quite certain he would not object that I share it here (he doesn’t). "In the course of a single conversation, I have been assured that Hillary is cunning and manipulative but also crass, clueless, and stunningly impolitic; that she is a hopelessly woolly-headed do-gooder and, at heart, a hardball litigator; that she is a base opportunist and a zealot convinced that God is on her side. And I’m reading pieces like this because now that Hillary has (essentially if not officially) won the Democratic Primary, I have become increasingly fascinated by the way so many people react to her. To conservatives she is a radical left-wing insurgent who has on multiple occasions been compared to Mikhail Suslov, the Soviet Kremlin’s long-time Chief of Ideology. Notice how Abramson uses the word “surprising”? The most thorough, profound and moving defense of Hillary Clinton I have ever seen.
Floridians Overwhelmingly Support Solar In Tuesday Vote – ThinkProgress Floridians Overwhelmingly Support Solar In Tuesday Vote – ThinkProgress Solar advocates finally got a win in the Sunshine State on Tuesday, as voters approved a measure to get rid of property taxes on solar equipment. With more than 1,970,000 Floridians checking ‘yes,’ the measure, known as Amendment 4, received more support than the state’s two U.S. Senate primary winners, Marco Rubio (R) and Patrick Murphy (D), combined. It’s not surprising that the measure passed, although the overwhelming support was a morale boost for the industry, which has faced hurdles in Florida. Amendment 4 received 72 percent approval overall — and needed only 60 percent to pass. “The passage of Amendment 4 is a victory for Florida’s taxpayers and businesses” — Rep. The amendment was the culmination of a bipartisan effort from the state legislature to make solar more affordable, especially for big box stores and for solar companies that offer leased equipment. “The passage of Amendment 4 is a victory for Florida’s taxpayers and businesses,” State Rep.
Obama's economic legacy ensures Democrats decades of success Progressive reformers of the early 20th century must have considered the Great Depression a mixed blessing. While the crisis left many working-class Americans nearly penniless, Democrats kicked ass in every presidential election from 1932-48. But since then they haven’t won more than two straight contests for the White House, which would seem to bode poorly for them next month. On November 8th, they’ll attempt to win a three-peat for the first time in 70 years, something they also tried to do in 1920, 1968 and 2000. In those elections, Democrats came up short. Why will Hillary Clinton Hillary Rodham ClintonWATCH LIVE: Trump campaigns in battleground Florida DC Metro preps for Inauguration Day Huckabee compares Trump to 'Jaws' character who’s eaten alive MORE succeed where her party’s 1920, 1968 and 2000 nominees failed? Take Cox and Humphrey, the 1920 and 1968 Democratic standard-bearers. By contrast, Clinton’s antecedent took office in the midst of the worst downturn in 80 years. Obama's economic legacy ensures Democrats decades of success
Podcast Article

★[Podcastastic] Random Redheaded Ramblings Title: Welcome to Night Vale Author: Joseph Fink and Jeffrey Cranor Publisher: Orbit Release Date: 20th October 2015 Source: Publisher ARC If you are a regular reader to the blog you may have noticed my wittering about the Welcome to Night Vale podcast of late, I have been binge listening to the podcasts every night on my half hour drive home and they are totally amazing, they appeal to my crazy side. I have now read the book and listened to about thirty five podcasts so I thought I had better share why I freaking love Night Vale and just because I feel like it, I shall be interviewing myself as to exactly what this crazy ass town is about. Heather, first tell me where is Night Vale? Well Heather to be honest I have no idea exactly where, well I kinda do but I was threatened by the Sheriffs Secret Police, well I might have been....I'm kinda fuzzy on the details. It could be roughly here..... Sheriffs Secret Police, that sounds a bit crazy! What's with all the helicopters? So you mentioned a book?
★[Podcast] Random Nerdery I'm a huge fan of Patrick Rothfuss' Kingkiller Chronicle books, so I was excited to find out that he'd been working on a podcast. The episodes of 'Untitled' are basically weekly chats between author Patrick Rothfuss and his friend Max Temkin, creator of the awesome (but NSFW!) Cards Against Humanity game. I think the idea was for the audience to suggest names to replace 'Untitled', but at time of writing I've listened all the way up to the seventh (latest) episode and they still haven't picked anything! Taking place over the ten weeks leading up to this year's Pax convention, the podcast episodes cover everything from discussion of the creative process to the merits of bacon. This sounds a bit random, but Rothfuss and Temkin are both such clever, imaginative and funny people that it makes a really interesting podcast and gives you a great insight into their respective industries. I'm making the podcast sound gloomy here, I realise, but it's really not!
Photo illustration by Slate. Logos courtesy WTF, The Read, Welcome to Night Vale, and Radio Diaries. Sarah Koenig photo courtesy This American Life. Paul F. Tompkins photo by Barry Brecheisen/WireImage. The best podcast episodes of all time? We’ll give you our answers to those questions in one second. But what is a podcast? How exactly does one judge a carefully crafted story that took weeks to report and put together but is only 15 minutes long against a 90-minute two-man back-and-forth full of digressions and absurdity with no real point? 25. 24. 23. 22. 21. 20. 19. 18. 17. 16. 15. FS 300 Part 1: 14. 13. 12. 11. 10. 9. 8. 7. 6. 99% Invisible, “The Sound of the Artificial World” (2011) Some 99% Invisible episodes make me crave a visual supplement. 5. 4. 3. 2. "I never really thought of it as an interview. 1. 2014/12 [Slate] The 25 Best podcast episodes ever
Architecture Articles

Why Architecture Isn't Art (And Shouldn't Be) Why Architecture Isn't Art (And Shouldn't Be) In recent years, there has been a lot of discussion about what architecture's ultimate purpose might be - with answers ranging from the creation of form to the correction of societal ills. But according to Lance Hosey, perhaps the least useful definition currently in circulation is that architecture is "art." In July, I wrote that when architects use the bodies of specific women such as Marilyn Monroe or Beyoncé as "inspiration" for buildings, they objectify both women and architecture. The message: Architecture is art, and where artists get their inspiration isn't up for debate, since it's personal to the artist. Huffington Post readers aren't alone in this view, of course. If architecture is art, what is "art," anyway? "Art as we have generally understood it," writes Larry Shiner in The Invention of Art (2003), "is a European invention barely two hundred years old." Schumacher exposes the most common conceit among architects.
121 Definitions of Architecture There are at least as many definitions of architecture as there are architects or people who comment on the practice of it. While some embrace it as art, others defend architecture’s seminal social responsibility as its most definitive attribute. To begin a sentence with “Architecture is” is a bold step into treacherous territory. Most days, architecture is a tough practice; on others, it is wonderfully satisfying. This collection of statements illustrates the changing breadth of architecture’s significance; we may define it differently when talking among peers, or adjust our statements for outsiders. A note: In an age that is particularly enamored with capturing ideas in 140 characters or less, it is tempting to take these remarks out of context. 1. 2. 3. 4. 5. 6. 7. 8. 9. 10. 11. 12. 13. 14. 15. 16. 17. 18. 19. 20. 21. 22. 23. 24. 25. 26. 27. 28. 29. 30. 31. 32. 33. 34. 35. 36. 37. 38. 39. 40. 41. 42. 43. 44. 45. 46. 47. 48. 49. 50. 51. 52. 53. 54. 55. 56. 57. 58. 59. 60. 61. 62. 63."
These Mesmerizing GIFs Illustrate the Art of Traditional Japanese Wood Joinery
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