Tag Archives: brainteaser

My new Top-20: Cities.

Hi folks!

Following on from the prelude, herewith, my recently formed list of what are to me the world’s Top-20 cities. In this post I’ll briefly describe and present pics of my Top-20 most interesting and unique districts, quarters or whole cities of the world that I recommend everyone should visit one day. It should go without saying I’ve been to all 20 – most times often, unlike some of the must-sees in my main list.

But first – rewind: How are my Top-100 and now Top-20 made up?

First, by using my own eyes and senses. I’m lucky enough to have a job in which I globetrot for nearly six months out of every 12. The primary reason: business. But why not mix it with the pleasure of a tourist? Why not indeed.

Eugene Kaspersky's top-100 must see places of the world

Read on: Places, which hardly require anybody’s recommendation…

Unexpected and extremely inexplicable sightings.

What are the chances of Hell ever freezing over, or, in the meantime, a cat surviving a short stay there? That’s right, slim at best.

Now, I would have thought there’d be similarly slim chances of seeing a car with Russian ’41’ plates – that’s Kamchatka folks, far-eastern Russia, next to Japan – on the cobbled roads of the Kaliningrad region – right at the other end of the world’s longest country some dozen time zones away. But I was recently proved wrong. Extremely unlikely sightings do occur…:

'41'; must be on the run’41’; must be on the run

Once I saw some motorbikes with German plates on the island of Crete. More than 1000km from home! EH?

And just occasionally UK plates – white on the front, yellow on the back – are to be seen in Moscow. That sure is some distance to cover.

Surprised? Intrigued? Impressed? You… shouldn’t be…

…For this is what I saw the other day:

'Extreme Duty Winch' – on an extreme duty Benz!‘Extreme Duty Winch’ – on an extreme duty Benz!

Yes folks, these photos were taken last week – not in, say, Saxony, Germany – but in Sydney, Australia! These Merc G-Classes were parked up outside the Shangri-La hotel there. Maybe Hell will one day freeze over – or at least fit central heating in the bed & breakfasts there to keep visiting felines warm…

You've Come a Long Way, Baby!You’ve Come a Long Way, Baby!

So, how on earth – or in (freezing) Hell – did they get there?

On a ship: from Italy via the Suez canal, across the Indian Ocean, around Australia and to Sydney?

Or overland: via Poland, Russia, Mongolia, China, Vietnam, Thailand, Malaysia, Singapore, Indonesia and Papua, and then on a ferry to northern Oz, and then cross-country-desert?

Or maybe the more boring route: via Greece, Turkey, Syria (hmmm, maybe not), Iraq, Iran, Pakistan, India, Myanmar, and so on?

// Or maybe they were just playing silly beggars and put German plates on locally purchased and registered Mercedes? Naah, surely not. The customized bits and bobs added to these vehicles (e.g., the contraption on one of the roofs), all that road (desert?) grime… Naah.

So how did they get here? A mystery. What do you think?  Any ideas?

G’day maties!…

Guatem-ooh-la-la volcanism.

Turns out the Ring of Fire affects Guatemala too. But then that country classic affects many, and always will :). But no, it’s the seismic-lithospheric-tectonic Ring of Fire that ensures Guatemala is fully sorted in the volcano department.

In all there are around 30 volcanoes in Guatemala – impressive for a country of its modest size. Taking a peek at trusty old Wikipedia, we see Guatemala covers approx. 100,000 square kilometers, so if we divide that by the number of volcanoes… ooh la la!: the volcanism force is strong with this one! It’s nothing on the Kurils of course (68 volcanoes in 10,500 square kilometers!), but the Kurils aren’t a whole country…

Antigua is surrounded by three volcanoes – Agua, Fuego and Acatenango – all of which were visible from our hotel:

Guatemala volcanos

Read on: Ahhh, so great being up a mountain!…

How much per minute? The Spanish parking pricing conundrum.

Still in Spain, after Barca, we headed over to the city of Seville. We needed to park up the motor for a few hours, so drove to the parking lot in the airport. And that’s when we saw it: Absurdity with a capital A. Or so it seemed at first…

On the wall of the parking lot hangs this here price list:

909254_1000Qué?

No folks, your eyes aren’t deceiving you. And no, that hasn’t been Photoshopped. Those figures, though very unreal, are actually for real.

What? How? Why? Anyone have a clue?

Read on: The reality of the matter turned out to be much more prosaic…

Tel Aviving the time.

My fall season globetrotting continues from country to country, city to city… What’s nice about it this year is that the weather just about everywhere is real good. My autumn coat hasn’t left the corner of my suitcase once yet.

Alas, the itinerary – as always – has been very intense – an intenserary! – and some of the ports of call have been decidedly un-resort-like, so dipping into some nice warm sea sadly hasn’t worked out. Until today! For here I am on the beach of Tel Aviv. Hurray! After the very tense official part of my visit to Israel I finally got to the shores of the Med for some serious chilling. Phew.

Beach time in Tel Aviv

But my beaching it in the Middle East is hardly worthy of a blog post in itself. However, while vegging out, I noticed in the corner of my eye a digital display on the side of the lifeguards’ tower. It took it in turns to show the time of day and the current temperature, much like similar digital displays the world over. But this one was a little different…

Read on: a brainteaser with digital clocks…

Brainteasers – August 26, 2014.

In July, KL turned 17! The occasion was marked in typical fanfare style, and gave us the chance to see in the last full year of our adolescence – by playing to our hearts’ content.

There were many high points throughout the all-dayer, but one that stood out for me was a KL-customized version of famed Russian TV intellectual quiz show ‘What? Where? When’, with the show’s very own presenter, renowned quiz-whizz Maxim Potashyov. Some of the questions were so darn hard even Wikipedia would have trouble coming up with the answers.

Yep, it was a real good bit of exercise for the brain.

BTW, we’ve just launched our Global Think Test. Its Brain Training Zone contains dozens of verbal, numerical and logic challenges, which were created together with Mensa, the world’s oldest high IQ society.

So get on over there and put your calculation and reasoning skills to the test!

So let’s see how you fare with some of Mr. Potashyov’s questions…. Here are 10 toughies. Answers will come later…

Maxim Potashyov's brainteaser

1. In a New York restaurant a diner is offered a ‘Russian cocktail’. The barman mixes it from three ingredients. First he takes 75 grams of vodka, then he adds 25 grams of the second ingredient and 50 grams of the third, and then he gives the concoction a thorough shake. What are the second and third ingredients of the cocktail?

Read on: 9 more brainteasers…

Hawaii Hi-Five-0.

Aloha folks!

I’m currently cooling off after a visit to the Big Island of the Hawaiian archipelago. What an amazing place – tipping the emotions over the edge with its mixture of perfect weather, pristine oceans, vibrant volcanism, opulent jungles and overall breathtaking beauty. Aloha Hawaii, and mahalo Hawaii :).

That things aren’t as 100% American as apple pie you kinda get the idea of when on the flight approaching the USA’s 50th state (it was the last state to join the Union, in 1959). Instead of the usual ‘thank you’ at the end of tannoyed messages, the stewardesses say ‘aloha and mahalo!’ as if heralding the fact that it isn’t quite, fully, the United States you’re approaching… It’s just different – so get ready!

Hawaii

Read on: Hawaii is really quite distinct from the other states…

Home is where the snow is.

In the end, my round-the-world tour turned out to be reasonably zig-ah-zig-ah:

Moscow – DublinAbu DhabiCanberra & Sydney – SingaporeAustin (via NYC and Dulles) – Riyadh – Tokyo/Osaka/Tokyo – and now: home!

The trip turned out to be a high-pressure one, with a tight schedule to fit all the work in and little time for chilled sightseeing. To be honest, it took a lot out of me. I’m real tired. Dog tired. Totally beat, burned out, wasted, done for, dead on the feet, whacked, fried, frazzled, KO’d, ruined… Walking to the gate at Narita airport in Tokyo, I nearly fell asleep while standing on the horizontal escalator thingie :).

Notes:

Out of the array of programs and films on offer on the screen in the back of the seat in front of me, I often opt for the flight route map. It’s a bit like cricket. Not much happens, what does happen occurs at a snail’s pace, but if you’re one for taking it real easy all day it’s the one to go for!

Tokyo-MoscowAerial cricket

Read on: some like it hot!…