Monday, February 18, 2013

German of Hamburg

The German of Hamburg is distinct from other varieties of German.  In German the dialect is called Hamburgisch.  One area in which the dialect differs from standard German is pronunciation.

In standard German, a word initial sp and st are pronounced with a voiceless alveopalatal fricative.  However, in the dialect of Hamburg, the initial consonant is a voiceless alveolar fricative.  This is the same as in other Germanic dialects such as English and Dutch.

The city Hamburg is pronounced with a word-final voiceless velar plosive in standard German.  In the Hamburg dialect, however, this is replaced with a voiceless velar fricative.  The words Zug (train) and Tag (day) are pronounced with a fricative in the Hamburg dialect and a plosive in standard German.

Another pronunciation difference occurs with the intervocalic voiceless alveolar plosive.  In the Hamburg dialect, this plosive becomes voiced.  Thus the word Vater (father) is pronounced with a voiced alveolar plosive in the Hamburg dialect.

In addition to pronunciation, differences also occur in vocabulary.  Though speakers of Hamburg can use standard German, Low German is often used in conversation.  To illustrate, a famous park in downtown Hamburg is called Planten un Blomen.  This is Low German for Plants and Flowers.  In standard German, also known as High German, this is Pflanzen und Blumen.

One well-known German dialect is the one spoken in Hamburg.  It differs from standard German in pronunciation and vocabulary.  It is spoken in the north of Germany, a region with many speakers of Low German.

Thursday, February 7, 2013

Multiplying Square Numbers from 51 to 59

Multiplying square numbers from 51 to 59 is very simple.  In fact, it can probably be done more quickly than with a calculator.  All that is needed is the rule.

The secret to multiplying square numbers from 51 to 59 is to apply three steps.  The first step is to square the first digit of the number.  With the numbers 51 to 59, the first digit is always 5 and the square is always 25.  Next we add this number to the digit on the right.  For example, if we take the number 51, the square of 5 is 25.  We add this to the 1 on the right and get 26.  Next we square the number on the right and make sure that we have two digits.  We square the number 1 and write 01 because we need two digits.  The product is 2601.

Now we can do the same with 52.  We square the number 5 and get 25.  We add this to the number 2 and get 27.  Next we square the number 4 and write 04.  The product is 2704.

Finally we can try this with a larger number.  Let us try 59.  We square the number 5 and get 25.  To this number we add 9 and get 34.  Now we square 9 and get 81.  The product is 3481.

Here are the squares of the numbers 51 to 59:


The rule for multiplying squares from 50 to 59 has only three steps.  By applying this rule, these squares can be multiplied quickly and easily.  With knowledge of this rule, a calculator is not needed.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013

Offensive Struggle

I played a game of speed chess that was an offensive struggle from start to finish.  My opponent, Eastlynne of the USA, played white.  Here are the moves of the game along with my commentary:

1. e4 c5
2. d4 cxd
3. Qxd4 Nc6
4. Qd1 e5
5. Nf3 Bc5

White is behind in development.

6. c4 Nf6
7. Nc3 h6

I prevent Bg5.

8. Be2 0-0
9. 0-0 a6
10. Nh4 Nd4

Here I should play d6 to free my light-squared bishop.

11. Nf5 Nxe2+

I also consider the move Nxf5.  In hindsight this move seems better than Nxe2 because the white knight on f5 is a real threat to my king.

12. Qxe2 d6

I finally free my light-squared bishop.

13. Bxh6 Bxf5

I decline the sacrifice of the bishop because I do not want to lose the pawn shield around my king.

14. Bxg7 Kxg7

This time I accept the sacrifice.  White's move is a surprise.  I expect exf5.  My king is more exposed than white's but I have more material.

15. exf5 Rh8
16. h3 Qd7
17. Qf3 Qc6

With a little more material than white, I offer to exchange queens.

18. Qg3+ Kf8
19. Qg5 Ke7

I decide to defend the knight with my king but this is a bad move.  It is much better to play Ne4.  The problem with Ke7 is that white can play Nd5+ on his next move and win my knight. 

20. Rae1 Rag8

White fails to play Nd5+, a superior move to Rae1. 

21. Qd2 Qxg2#

The best move for white is Qxg8.  In his desire to save his queen, white fails to notice that I can mate his king. 

Without question, I am lucky to win this game.  My eleventh move, Nxe2+, and my nineteenth move, Ke7, are both mistakes.  However, white also plays bad moves.  The move that he fails to play on his twentieth move, Nd5+, probably wins him the game.  I emerge victorious because his mistakes are more crucial than mine.

Monday, February 4, 2013


Tequila is a Mexican drink made from the blue agave plant.  Tequila was first produced in the 16th century near the city of Tequila.  It usually has an alcohol content between 38 to 40%.

Tequila can be classified into four types:  silver, gold, rested and aged.  Silver is usually not aged or only aged up to two months; gold is a mixture of silver and rested tequila; rested is aged from two months to one year; aged is from one to three years.

Tequila can be served in a variety of cocktails.  The traditional margarita uses tequila.  Another famous cocktail which uses tequila is the tequila sunrise.


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