World Chess Championship 2013, Round 2: declining the sacrifice

Yesterday, I covered the first round of the World Chess Championship between Anand and Carlsen, which ended in a quick draw.

Today, in the second round, the colors were reversed, with Anand as White and Carlsen as Black. The game also ended in a draw, but featured much more interesting positions and possibilities.

Game and notes below:

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World Chess Championship 2013 Round 1: how to understand the short 16-move Carlsen-Anand draw

In the much-anticipated first round of the World Chess Championship between Anand and Carlsen, the game ended in a very quick 16-move draw.

In accordance with my own advice on ways to follow the match to maximize learning, today I saw the match result, downloaded a PGN file of the game score, and then walked through it without a computer engine running, analyzing the game with my own mind as I replayed the game. Then I double-checked my thoughts with a chess engine. I still have not bothered to read or watch any coverage of this first-round game; I will do that later.

Game and notes below:

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The Chess Improver: How to watch the Anand-Carlsen World Chess Championship to improve your own game

For The Chess Improver, I wrote “How to watch the Anand-Carlsen World Chess Championship to improve your own game”. I have a couple of things to add to that post, based on new information that just came my way. There is a lot of sport-oriented trash-talking out there before the match begins, for example Garry Kasparov rooting for young Magnus Carlsen. This is exactly the kind of thing I want to avoid as I focus on the chess itself. Read On →

Steel City Ukuleles: a nice session on playing by ear

It’s been three (rather than the usual two, because of the nature of the twice-a-month scheduling) weeks since my last meeting of the Steel City Ukuleles. I was definitely starting to miss the group meeting, and was happy to attend tonight, although I have to confess I did enjoy having more time to work on my own ukulele musical projects (rather than practicing the meetup music). Playing by ear Renee had volunteered to lead a session including basic practice for playing by ear, a very important skill that many of us coming from the “written score” orientation of music need work on. Read On →

The dilemma of how to descend the Cathedral of Learning once at the top

Yesterday, right after I left one of the sessions of the annual Pittsburgh Jazz Seminar at the William Pitt Union, I immediately crossed the street to the Cathedral of Learning, in order to climb up to the 36th floor (I last climbed the Cathedral three days ago): View of Cathedral of Learning I took off my shoes, stuffed my jacket into my backpack, and went up at an “easy” pace, taking about nine minutes: Read On →

Say No to Daylight Savings Time

We don’t need Daylight Saving Time. I hate this messing with my internal clock.

Broccoli and friends

Today I saw an article about marketing broccoli and other vegetables. By coincidence, I had this morning whipped up a vegetable dish in the kitchen that included some broccoli. How my father got me to eat broccoli Here’s the basic story of why I ate broccoli as a child and through adulthood. I distinctly remember not really liking broccoli as a toddler of around two and a half to three years old (my childhood memories do not go earlier than age two and a half). Read On →

The Chess Improver: The double-edged nature of computer-based preparation

For The Chess Improver, I wrote about the double-edge natures of computer-based preparation.

An early start on Cathedral of Learning stair climbing

After work today, I had gone to the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, main branch in Oakland, to pick up some books, when I looked across Forbes Avenue and saw the Pitt Cathedral of Learning. Primed by Becky’s message today about forming a team again for the Fight for Air Climb at One Oxford Centre in downtown Pittsburgh, for next March, I suddenly decided to do the 36-floor stair climb of the Cathedral of Learning to “officially” begin my training for that event! Read On →

Did glucosamine and MSM relieve my knee pain?

MSM I just saw an article “Glucosamine and MSM for Joint Pain?” that brought up some old memories. The article examined whether these supplements are actually useful. My story I started running and hiking over a decade ago, at age 29. Some of my blog posts here have discussed why and how I started. For the first couple of years of such activity, I was plagued with a lot of knee and other pain (especially shin pain). Read On →