The Story Behind The Game Of Chess

Dec - 05 2016 | no comments | By

I previously wrote an article on buying Chess sets and thought I would expand on the history of chess.

Chess has experienced a lengthy trek bringing it. It has experienced a variety of forms from a number of different states, each getting a distinctive spin on the game. In the late 15th Century, where many of the most popular rules of the day became created, Chess is derived most heavily in its modern incarnation. Since this time, Chess has formed a hold on many of the sensible heads of every Century, never evaporating from the common view. Many novels have already been composed on Chess from a variety of locations and authors, placing it high in the limelight of intelligent, popular games which could both stimulate and entertain.

The primary game that Chess came to be born was originated in the 6th Century in India. These divisions, elephants, chariots, infantry, and calvary, were represented by pieces much like Rooks, Bishops, Pawns, and Knights respectively. This game was played on an eight by eight board, which while uncheckered, had particular spaces with special marks. Now the meanings of the marks are not currently known, but do not seem to have special meaning to the game itself. This game, the earliest that is located, appears to be the birthplace of Chess.

To the Far East, the game was carried by travellers from Chaturanga. Here, the game started to be played on the intersecting lines rather than the blank spaces. The purpose of the game was to render the opponent’s King, occasionally called a General entirely worthless, much in line with a contemporary Checkmate. This game shares many components with another popular game, Go, which also comes from Eastern Asia. The pieces for this variant of Chess are commonly level, marked pieces, much like a conventional checkers set.

Through the enlarging Arabic empire, and Persia, the Byzantine Empire, however, the match slowly started to reach Europe. The Norman Conquest of England reached even though the game was unpopular with Northern Europeans only at that point, regions which played Chess early on. It was not until Chess pieces began to be depicted as they are today- Kings, Queens, Bishops, Knights, Rooks, and Pawns, or men of arms- in the middle of the 12th Century that Chess started to grow popular with the folks.

In 1475 AD, however, radical changes were made to the game, evolving it to the game that Chess is today. The Queen was granted powers that had never been seen on a Chessboard before. Bishops were given more power as well, enabling the game to start to focus more on long-ranging attacks which ultimately accelerated up the game. It is also thought that the transition of the pieces into more courtly images, rather than military ones, helped the game to catch hold in Europe. In the centre of the 19th Century, Chess began to take an even more powerful hold, becoming a favorite game played among intellectuals.

3 Important Tips for Buying Chess Sets

Dec - 01 2016 | no comments | By

It is hard to understand when you have never purchased one before, just what to search for in chess sets. Luckily, we have some good suggestions that will help you locate chess sets on the market that’ll benefit you in each of the ways you need. Simply follow the suggestions and you’ll have before you are aware of it, an attractive chess set to love!

Hint #1 Match the Board and Pieces

You can pretty much buy anything you prefer, in case you are in the market for chess pieces. Nevertheless, keep in mind you need the pieces as well as the board to be of exactly the same quality. In addition, you need the chess pieces to match the board. Do not buy excessively big pieces for a little board or exceedingly little pieces for a big board.
You may love playing chess more having a chess board and chess pieces that complement one another. You can buy a chess board that comes with pieces made specifically for that board, also.

Trick #2 Buy That Which You Are Able To Manage

Too often we look for the lowest priced product and buy it for its supposed worth. Nevertheless, that is not exactly that which you should do when searching for chess sets on the market. Not to mention it is possible to enjoy the same set for all your chess.

There is simply something about playing with chess on a finely crafted board with well made pieces. You’ll discover the difference immediately. Not to mention, a chess set that is well made will last your entire life.

Hint #3 What Kind of Chess Set Can You Need?

11122262203_fed20e9306_zOne other important hint to bear in mind when looking for chess sets available would be to consider what type of chess set you need. To begin with, where will you store your chess set? It can not matter much, in the event you plan on storing it in a cupboard, but then make sure the woods match well if you want to display it on a coffee table.

Additionally, how often are you going to play chess? If you’re a daily chess player then you must buy an extremely durable chess set. If you just desire a chess set to complement room or a table then you definitely can buy a sort that is different. Travel chess sets are a better choice for you if you only need to play chess when you’re traveling subsequently. Only continue in mind that will show one to the correct set and everything you need to use your chess set for.

Only follow these suggestions and any personal tendencies you have when looking for chess sets available for sale. You’ll find only the thing you should satisfy your chess playing needs at the same time as last you a lifetime.

Flower Gardening – A Joy As An Occupation Or A Hobby

May - 31 2016 | no comments | By

Flower gardening has grown from a procedure for group of the most pretty weeds that grow in a particular place. This toleration marks the whole historic past of agriculture since this is flower gardening appeared in the first place. Blooms are usually referred to as company plants as compared with food plants which have a practical side only. It was in the 19th century that flower gardening created favorable property for landscaping and grew to become popular in the united states.

At the present time, there are corporations which in fact pay horticulture providers to look after their gardens each year to ensure that colorations are kept. Flower gardening is needing because it relies on good knowledge of land peculiarities, plant species, fertilization together with a lot more. While others have made a profession out of it and in relation to livelihood, some people require flower gardening as a hobby.

Flower gardening generally defines bigger homes where lots of blooms are initially grown inside so as to be subsequently revealed outside. Rich soil, lots of adequate and sunshine weather conditions will make your garden blossom most and grow. Flower gardens at times improve ornamental veggies and herb gardens. The mixture is proper and absolutely good.

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Blooms generally appeal to people in lots of manners, they enhance the disposition, they compliment your lawn treatment they make us feel better in your house and they grow to be a supply of positive energy. Perceptions please and give peace, harmony and tranquility they grow. For many people who choose flower gardening as a pastime, 2 or 1 beds are adequate to attain aesthetic effects that are fine.

Flower gardening is actually an excellent pastime and a commendable profession. Maybe you Won’t create the most astonishing of landscapes in a month or a week, but in 6 months, results can be fulfilling.

Land, water and sunshine, some fundamental tools and the right seeds, make the components to start with. Encounter is incorporated by knowledge and flower gardening are sure to get better with each and every year if you make mistakes at first. This occupation is about feeling fantastic in nature, and it is not for anyone with a sedentary lifestyle. Horticulture could be a present you can uncover at almost any place in your life.

The History Of Timber Cladding

Mar - 11 2015 | no comments | By

Timber cladding is a sturdy, natural siding that is easy to install and quite affordable. Combine these assets with the fact that timber cladding is a good-looking finish to your home or shed, and you have a popular material with a colorful history.

Dark Ages

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Believe it or not, timber cladding has been recorded as in use even back in the Dark Ages. In Europe, especially in heavily forested areas, the ready supply of wood for timber cladding made it a natural choice. Planed timber would be used in the huts, and layers of hand-cut shingles and thatch would waterproof the roof. The hardy oak, walnut, and other hardwoods of the forests provided strong joists and beams for any structure, and the timber is still recovered today for use in modern structures.

16th Century

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Weatherboarding was developed as far back as the 16th century. Clapboards were cut from the hardwood trees. In fact, the word “clapboard” actually comes from the Dutch word for “splitting”, which is “Klappen”. Pine was also used for timber cladding, making construction fast and easy. In areas where wood was easily available, wood construction was far more popular than brick.

18th Century

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In the 18th Century, more and more softwood were used, with the timber shipped in from North America and the Baltic. This timber cladding had been processed industrially, sawn mechanically rather than by hand. This meant that a great deal of cladding was produced, and the mass production of wire nails made building structures much easier and affordable.

The Modern Era

Modernism did make a dent in the demand for timber cladding. The extensive use of concrete and steel, even in the finished surfaces, meant that other areas of industry were developed. However, the difference in demand was more in the area of reduced growth rather than a reduction in existing demand., Regardless of the fashion of the era, timber cladding is just simply more affordable and easier to work with. Concrete, glass, and steel is more expensive.

Timber Cladding Today

Today, timber cladding is still the preferred material for almost all domestic construction, and most public and industrial construction. Concrete-tilt wall construction is used a great deal for commercial buildings, but the interior partitions are often still made of timber. The weight of timber and timber cladding is much easier to manage on construction sites, and it is much easier to install drywall and exterior cladding when the builders can simply nail into the frame, rather than screwing into thinner metal rails.

Timber cladding is attractive and affordable, and can be painted or stained depending on the desires of the homeowner. In addition, it can be produced in various finished patterns and installed in sheets or as individual units, such as with cedar-shakes. From roof to foundation, timber cladding is crucial to the sturdy, resilient structure of most houses today, and will continue to be an important feature.

A Look Back At The Militarization Of The Olympic Games

Feb - 03 2015 | no comments | By

Do you remember the obvious presence of the military during the 2012 Olympic Games? It may have faded from most people’s memories. The general public assumed that a strong military presence was necessary due to the threat of terrorism. Since the attacks on the World Trade Center, the Global War on Terror has served as cover for a great deal of militarization all over the globe. It was just more apparent with something as public as the Olympic Games.

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A Full Scale Military Operation

How could the general populace overlook the militarization? There were SAMs installed on the roofs of apartment blocks. These apartments were homes to thousands of civilians, but that didn’t matter. The residents even tried to halt the installation of these missiles, but were overruled in court. Most of the installation of SAMs was in poor and middle class neighborhoods. These surface to air missiles were one of the more memorable developments that exemplified the militarization of the Olympic Games.

In addition, the Royal Navy was on alert, with battleships patrolling off of the coast, ready to launch a “counterattack” as needed. The HMS Ocean was moored in Greenwich, used as a command center. It was from this center that the Lynx helicopters, complete with armed snipers, deployed for their 24 hour surveillance.

The Royal Air Force had a steady air patrol over London. What is a fighter jet or helicopter going to do if someone plants a backpack bomb? That is not a counterterrorism measure!
The Royal Marines were not left out of this deployment. They were constantly on patrol on the river, their patrol boats a constant presence.

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Deployment of Troops

Besides the presence of military hardware, you have the deployment of military personnel, too. Troop deployment began with 13,500 soldiers assigned to various venues at which Olympic events were scheduled. They were also assigned to various teams to protect them from attack.
Not long after the first deployment, another 35,000 troops were deployed to reinforce those same areas. By the time the military was finished deploying, in London alone, there were 7,000 more troops on the ground than in all of Afghanistan.

Funding

Funding for all of this militarization, and for the structures erected for the purpose of the games, came to almost $40 billion. All of this money came from taxpayers. Tickets to the Olympics fetched as much as $3000 each, but did not go back into the coffers from which the events were funded.
All of this was done during austerity measures in England which deprived poor neighborhoods of funding and jobs.

Modern City Landscape

The London city landscape has constantly evolved into a more militarized area, with bolards littering the streets and buildings surrounded by gigantic heavy steel planters, this is to prevent any vehicle attacks.

George Orwell

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All of this brings to mind the novel “1984” by George Orwell. He wrote of a militarized nanny state in which the poor and middle class had no voice in what was done with their jobs, neighborhoods, and taxes. All the while, rich bankers and the intellectual elite continued to live glamorous lives.
And, all of this became apparent through militarization of the Olympic Games.

How To Care For Your Garden In The Winter

Oct - 31 2014 | no comments | By

Overwintering your garden and using proper lawn care can ensure that spring brings a wealth of flowers and healthy new growth. This is especially important with rental property, as beneficial plants are easier to care for than weeds. Although your lawn and deciduous trees appear to be dead in the winter, they are actually dormant. That means that all new growth is occurring underground. Here are some tips for lawn care and for taking care of your garden in the winter, so that you have less maintenance in the spring.

Winter Lawn Care

Believe it or not, a healthy lawn is really easier to care for than a sparse lawn. You have to mow it, of course, but the lawn grasses will choke out most weeds. This means that you will have to tend the lawn less often, and will not have renters calling about weed problems. With a few simple preparations, a lawn will do far more than survive a harsh winter. It will thrive the following spring. The freeze-thaw cycle is actually very beneficial to your lawn and garden. As it becomes saturated with snow melt, and re-freezes at night, the soil heaves. This aerates the soil and allows it to absorb nutrients. The loosened soil is a perfect medium for small feeder-roots to thrive, in preparation for a vigorous spring growth.

It is a good idea to winterize your lawn and garden. This is easily done with the proper combinations of phosphates and nitrogen. Water the mixture in to give it a chance to dissolve and absorb into the soil. There, it will condition the soil throughout the winter, helping to protect the roots of lawn grasses and perennial plants from the harshest of winter freezes.

Mulching

With rental property, you probably do not have many flowerbeds in place. If you do, you probably do not spend a lot of time tending them. To keep these beds trim and looking nice, you need to mulch. In general, your mulches should be composted. While raking dropped leaves into your flowerbed may choke out any weeds that would emerge in the spring, the leaves will sap valuable nitrogen out of the soil as they decompose. That is why a compost bin is so valuable. The vegetation goes through its decomposing stage without sapping the soil, and reaches a balance in which it can return value to the soil.

Mulch will also help to protect more sensitive plants from harsh weather. In some cases, your rental property may have a specimen tree, bush, or flower that you value, but cannot be on site to tend. Mulch holds water in so that soil does not dry out. By preventing dry roots in the wintertime, plant health is more likely. Mulch also keeps weed seeds from germinating in the spring.

With rental property, it is often a temptation to relax on lawn care. However, a healthy lawn improves your property, and is easier to care for.

Reasons To Be Glad You Missed Glastonbury Festival Tickets

Oct - 28 2014 | no comments | By

The Glastonbury Festival is a music icon in the UK, and tickets sell out early. People from all over the world congregate for the festival, many purchasing their tickets months ahead of time – which, by the way – you must do if you intend to attend. For you lucky losers who did not purchase your tickets in time for the Glastonbury Festival 2015, here are some reasons to be glad you missed out.

Weather

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Face it – the weather at the Glastonbury Festival is notoriously moody. In fact, weather anywhere in the UK is moody, and when you are planning days of exposure, you are at the mercy of Mother Nature. Think of it this way – your tent and camping equipment is snug and dry in the attic, while your friends’ tents are half submerged in mud in the pouring rain. Those poor saps who were waving their tickets in your face last month are now huddled under umbrellas, and do not have a dry piece of clothing to their names. You, on the other hand, are sitting snug and dry at home. And the music? Well, remember last year when there was an electrical storm? Yeah, they had to cut power to the stage, and there was no music for an hour or so.

Of course, the sun may be shining for the Festival. Wouldn’t that be great? Sorry you have to miss the unrelenting glare of direct sun for hours at a time, with no relief and no shelter. Sure, your tent may offer some shade, but few tents are air conditioned. Is yours? Probably not. Tents are hotter than Hades, and stuffy to boot.

Facilities

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Ah, what the Americans call Porta-Potties. The facilities at Glastonbury Festival are – unavoidable. Take your own tissue, because they are sure to run out of it. And, take your own hand sanitizer. Maybe take your own Wet-Wipes so you can clean your hands properly. Oh, yes, and do your best to avoid the people who, under the influence of – something – mistake the liquid around the loos as a swimming pool.

Queues

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Just think, you are at home, watching the performances on TV, dry, and with a private bathroom within easy walking distance. You might have to wait for one of the kids to finish in the bathroom, but it is nothing like the queues at the Festival. You don’t have to wait in line for food, either. Just go to the kitchen, and put together a sandwich. And just think, you sandwich is not soggy from being in an ice chest.

Plus, when you get ready to go to bed, you just go to bed. You do not have to wait in line just to get to your accommodation around Glastonbury.

I was 14 when Woodstock was held in the U.S., and was so disappointed that I was not allowed to attend. Now, a “few” years later, when I see the pictures of Woodstock participants, I – well – I STILL wish I had been there.

The History Of Stonework

Oct - 20 2014 | no comments | By

Natural stone planters, retaining walls, and pathways are all part of the skills sets of stonemasons in the UK. In fact, stonemasonry is one of the oldest skills in civilization. From the initial quarrying to the final sculpting, every planter and building is a monument to the creativity and mastery of the stonemason who created it. The ability to take a raw, irregular stone and create a symmetrical bit of building block is a valued skill with ancient roots.

New Stone Age

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When humans began to build their shelters from stone, rather than from mud and grasses, the new Stone Age was born. The development of mortar and the use of quicklime and stone provided sturdy shelter that could withstand assaults from weather and humans. This was the birth of technology that would yield the Great Pyramids of Egypt, Grecian temples, and breathtaking palaces in Persia.

The first guild of stonemasons was developed during the medieval times, when castles were the architecture of choice. The skills levels were broken down into 3 levels:

  • Apprentice
  • Journeyman
  • Master Mason

These skills levels are used to this very day in many trades and crafts.

Roman Empire

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With the expansion of the Roman Empire, stonemasonry took a back seat to timber. Trees were much easier to harvest and prepare for construction for the quickly growing Empire.

However, the spread of the Roman Empire also saw the need for more cathedrals across the face of Europe, and the construction material of choice for these beloved structures was, of course, stone.

Rennaissance

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During the 14th Century, stonemasons stretched their wings even further with more artistic endeavors such as the Laurentian Library. Designed and constructed by Michelangelo Buonarroti, this beautiful structure survives to this day, a tribute to the imagination and skill of its creator.

20th Century

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The 20th Century, with the industrial revolution, steam engines, cranes, and high capacity mixers for mortar, saw some of the most dramatic changes in the art of stonemasonry.

This most modern configuration of the craft allows for precision and size never imagined by the ancient stonemasons.

The Evolution Of Dance

Sep - 24 2014 | no comments | By

The evolution of dance is as long as the presence of man on this planet. Perhaps one of the most elusive of arts to visualize, dance is used, among other reasons, to express emotion, as a form of worship, as an act of healing, and for artistic expression. Dance does not leave behind concrete proof of its existence in the form of cave drawings or tools, but it’s presence throughout human history cannot be ignored.

Ceremony

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From the earliest recorded history, dance has been used in ceremonies. Actually, there really is a 9000 year old rock painting of people dancing in India, and a tomb painting in Egypt that depicts a couple dancing, has been dated about 3300 BC. The earliest writings about dance are from India, in which a dance called the Natya Shastra is described. This dance, as described in the manuscript, is still around today, and is considered a classic.

Ancient writings in Sri Lanka dating back to 543 BC speak of wedding ceremonial dances, and classical dance of that area typically have very intricate rhythms.

Healing

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Dance has also traditionally been used as a form of healing. Civilizations all across the world have used dance to enter trances and states of ecstasy which are supposed to ward off evil spirits that were suspected of causing illness. The Dance Macabre of the middle ages reflects this purpose, and was intended to ward off the black death.

Expression

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It is surmised that dance was used before the written and spoken word as a form of instruction. Before the written word, dance was used to teach the myths of ancient civilizations, and the dances were passed down much as stories.

The earliest written record of dancing in Europe was in Homer’s “Iliad”. He explained the chorea, from which the word for designated dance move evolved in the form of “choreography”. The chorea was a system of dance moves, each of which denoted a particular emotion or passion. These passions would be communicated to the audience through the recognized gestures, and they were often recreated in art of the era.

Modern Dancing

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Modern dancing dates back to the 1700s but obviously has evolved into more modern and completely different branches. Ballet was developed, built largely on the passions of ancient Greek dance. Dance in India, by that time, had become somewhat vulgar and was banned by the British. However, ballet continued to grow in popularity, and court dance was also very popular. Due to the clothing of the era, most court dances involved large gestures and posing. Ballet is still very popular among children and is taught around the world today, just need to make sure you have the right dance accessories!

The last century has seen a great deal of change in dancing, perhaps more than in any other era. The beginnings of the 1900s saw independent dancers begin to break loose from their partners in modern dance forms, and now, it is not unusual to see people dancing without a partner at all.

Folk dancing, court dances, ballroom dancing, and other forms of dance are rising in popularity. As people strive to become more fit, they have found satisfaction and expression, as well as social interaction, in various forms of dance.

The History Of Bude

Sep - 22 2014 | no comments | By

Bude is a picturesque town on the ocean, located in the northern part of Cornwall, England. The beaches of Bude face a part of the Atlantic Ocean called the Celtic Sea. This popular Victorian era watering hole and resort has remained a draw for those wanting to enjoy beautiful beach and surf. The surf, especially, draws in surfers from all over the world, with the power of the Atlantic behind the surf that beacons.

Surfing

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Bude is actually the home of the surfing industry in the UK. It really began in the 1950s, when young Australians, recently relocated due to WWII, discovered the surf in this picturesque area. They formed the Surf Life Saving Club in 1953, and to this day the town takes pride in its support of the surfing society. There are varieties of challenges in the surf of this area, making it an ever-changing landscape with plenty of choices of challenges.

Romantic Settings

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The beaches were so popular during the Victorian era that the railroad led there, just for the middle classes could enjoy “sea bathing”. In addition to the attraction of the sea, the wild surroundings helped to fuel details that accompanied Arthurian Legend.

Beaches

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The beaches at Bude are legendary, from the wide beach at Widemouth Bay to the striking cliffs at Sandymouth Beach. The sand was once used by area farmers to amend the thick soil of farms.

Not only are there several terrific beaches that draw visitors, there are numerous coves that bear exploration. The beaches at Widemouth Bay, Crooklets, and at Summerleaze draw the majority of surfers. However, the more experienced surfers often enjoy the rockier climes of Sandymouth, NorthCott Mouth, and Duckpool.

Weather

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The Atlantic Ocean, with its notorious fury and damaging storms, succeeds only in creating fabulous surf at Bude. The size and anger of the Atlantic produces some of the best, long swells that break into great waves on the beach.

While winters are predictably cold, wetsuits keep the most dedicated out on the surf. The sunshine during the rest of the year brings out the beach combers and picnickers, too.

Skill Levels

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Since Bude is basically the home of UK surfing, it has established a great range of skills groups for surfers. Beginners can learn techniques at Crooklets. Surf schools like Bude Surfing Experience provide soft-shell boards that help beginners get started and build strength and confidence. They are lightweight, buoyant boards that make it easy to ride waves.

Visit Bude

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There is plenty to do in Bude besides surfing, too. Visit Bude Castle, which is a heritage centre. Take a tour of the Bude Canal, or visit the lovely boutiques in town, dine in some of the nicest restaurants, and kick back in comfy inns and pubs. You can stay in comfortable lodging near the beach as you go coasteering and surfing, or select a comfortable bed and breakfast with full view of the meadows in the area.

Bude even has its own rugby and football clubs, and is the birthplace of George and Arthur Mills, both authors.

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