Blog Post #45: Fresh Ideas

Dear Readers,

I am gratefully enjoying peaceful and happy times with my wife, son, two sisters and their families this summer. Daily walks, sightseeing and chats have been nicely refreshing, and even a source of some fresh ideas!

My family knows that I also still enjoy following the development of modern chess, and when I have a little extra time to spare, I love to spar a bit with various chess programs, on- or offline. Though the game given below was only a very quick and informal one, it did have quite a pretty finish.

I played White, and I consider move numbers 8 and 14 to be somewhat unusual yet interesting too. The computer “reacted” weakly, and was soon defenceless. It could certainly have resigned after 20 Qh5.


Especially for this Blog Post #45, I have the following brainteaser for you…

Think of two whole numbers whose sum is 45. Multiply the two numbers together. Then multiply by my house number, 11.

What is the largest three-digit result that we can get?


“In some future year, the reciprocal of Martin’s age on his birthday in the future year plus the reciprocal of the 20th century year in which Martin was born will equal 1/44, the reciprocal of 44. Your brainteaser is to figure out Martin’s birth year. A solution will be given in Blog Post #45.”


Martin was born in 1980. He will be 45 in the year 2025.

1/45 + 1/1980 = 1/44.


2 x 43 x 11=946.

Today, I received a really kind e-mail message from Mischa Maisky (one of the best-ever cellists), including greetings from former World Chess Champion Vladimir Kramnik. Whether people are famous or not, it’s always nice to be well-remembered, and so I would like to finish this article with the following thought: whatever may happen in our lives, you can be very sure that God is thinking of you and me all the time, and when we know that, we can enjoy His peace constantly. I wish for that happiness to come to more and more people xxx



Author: Paul A. Motwani

My name is Paul Motwani, but my colleagues, my students and their parents mostly call me "Mr. Mo"! My middle initial, A, stands for Anthony, because I was born on the official feast day of St. Anthony of Padua, the patron saint of miracles and of lost souls. I love teaching Mathematics and Chess, and giving fun-packed talks and shows in schools and clubs. The popular ingredients of Math, Chess, Mystery and Magic are my "Fantastic Four", and I give prizes too! I am an International Chess Grandmaster, and (loooooong ago!) I was the World Under-17 Champion. I am the author of five published chess books and hundreds of newspaper articles. I live with my wonderful wife and son in Belgium. I also love music, movies and puzzles. I blog at My e-mail address is You can find me on Facebook, too.

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