A Little Light on the Subject of Film or Video

Lighting is always a key issue in cinematography. It is not so challenging to learn, but you must learn to see lighting issues right away. Lighting for film is always very tricky and it's absolutely necessary to use a will keep you from having to fix inconsistencies in post-production, which is sometimes impossible to prevent, but if you are really good that will not happen much.

Preproduction Lighting Notes are Crucial

When you make a few short films you will find that it is crucible to note down lighting details, light color, and lighting temperature in production notes. It can be a real pain when you are editing and you have change color ranges from edit to edit. Furthermore, it can be fatal to the continuity in your film.

If there is an overall problem with the color of the light in your production, your digital software may have color correction filters that can help take care of it during editing in post production. When everything used to be shot in film, filters had to be used over the lens at the time of shooting and it was significantly harder to accomplish what can now be successfully executed with digital editing.

Three Point Lighting

Three-point lighting is the standard lighting setup and applied in all film and television production. It is always better to have good natural lighting, but if you do not have good natural light available three point lighting is what you will generally use.

Three-point lighting consists of the following: Key Light

Your key light is the main light shining on your subject. Be careful not to have it too close to the subject since it can create hot areas and glare.

Fill Light

Your Key light usually creates a harsh light that renders a distinct shadow. The best way to get rid of that shadow is to use your Fill light.

Kicker Light

The Kicker light is applied behind the subject to fill in the shadows there. Using the kicker light can give the subject dimension.

Lighting Kit

When you purchase supplies for your light kit, the lights we just covered are the primary lights that you will need. You will also be in need of a means to apply diffusion material. If you have a screen door or window, look at the light outside without the screen in front of it. Do you see how bright and vivid it is? Now block the light with the screen; It is naturally diffused and becomes darker. This is what you are doing whenever you use lighting diffusers while shooting a scene.

Light Diffusion

There are a number of ways to achieve light diffusion. In a light kit, it is wise to include gauzy material like cheesecloth, muslin, or a material that is white, to diffuse. You will use binder clips and pickshift scrim stands . "Scrim" is another word for a diffuser material. Filmmakers have used such things as old 3-legged music stands and binder clips to create scrim stands that diffuse the light passing through them.

Filming in Natural Lighting

Filming in natural lighting tends to be favorable, but presents difficulties of its own. From 10 am to 3 pm in the afternoon, the sun creates harsh shadows under the eyes and nose of the subject. This can be remedied using fill lights under the subjects' faces. The Best Natural Lighting

The best natural lighting is the lighting that comes at the end of the day, a couple of hours before sunset. This lighting has a golden caramel-colored glow and gives everything a halo. The sun is at a perfect angle for the filming, creating light that falls directly on the subject's face.

Sunset lighting is really good for painting sentimental and romantic moments. However, at this time of day, it is absolutely imperative to shoot fast since there will not be much time to execute shots. Make sure everything is ready in anticipation of the sunset lighting. Dealing With Lighting Challenges

During filming, some kinds of sets are extremely challenging to light properly, and may make it necessary to find creative solutions to deal with problems. Taking a trip to the hardware store will in some cases help you find ways to resolve lighting problems. Lighting is something that has to be practiced. Anyone who expects to light everything perfectly on the day of the shoot without any setbacks or glitches will be in for a nasty surprise. You must make test runs with your lights first.

Electrical Requirements

It is crucial to ensure that electrical requirements are met for lighting. Lights demand a lot of energy, so it is a good idea to make sure that you will not be short out the system, or even an the entire block, as a result of trying to light the set. Check with an electrician about this.


Remember – these lights are hot. Protect yourself and others. Also, you may have an occasional bulb popping and spraying glass everywhere. This seldom happens, but it really is better to be safe than sorry.

You must do everything that a person can to be safe. There are going to be cords everywhere on the ground or floor during the shoot. You will have people running everywhere so secure down all your cords firmly and make people aware of their locations.

A person can use gaffer's tape on the electrical cords to secure them in place. Gaffer's tape is more expensive and does not leave marks on walls on floors. You can use duct tape in a pinch but gaffer's tape is best.

Let There Be Light

Light is everything we see and has the utmost impact on every aspect of a film. Do not treat light light, but if you get stressed by it, lighten up. Movies are suppose to be fun. Enjoy the learning process of getting light on the subject.

Gift Basket Business Earnings and Profits – Can You Make a ‘Six Figure’ Salary?

The profit potential of the gift basket business is kind of blurry to some before they get started and they could be forgiven for wondering if a full-time income is possible. In this article we look at the profit potential of the gift basket business, how much earning and profit are possible, and lastly we look at the factors that separate the ‘six figure’ operators from the small timers.

Typical Gift Basket Business Earnings

For gift basket business owners operating out of their homes it is not unreasonable to expect to turnover between $15,000 to $25,000 in the first year of business if they work hard allowing for a profit of around $6,000 to $10,000. Once a business in this industry gets better established owners can expect a typical annual salary of around $20,000 to $25,000 part time or $30,000 to $80,000 full-time.

To break into the ‘six figure’ level companies usually have to expand out of the home business model and move into commercial space. Many gift basket businesses allow their owners to take home an income of over $100,000 a year and for some players in this business much more has been possible.

What does it take to Earn ‘Six Figures’?

1) While some business owners in this industry do very well from home, only with commercial premises can you really get the space and facilities to take your gift basket business to the next level. A store front will also increase your market exposure and give your business a much more professional appearance.

2) The successful players in this business control the Internet and make it a key part of their marketing strategy. This involves refining their websites until they offer customers the perfect shopping experience and the easiest ordering process. Understanding how to drive large numbers of targeted visitors to a website is also important.

3) Referrals and repeat orders are one way to acquire new customers for no advertising spend. By showing clients a high standard of service and making their experience with your company truly unique you can benefit immensely from word of mouth marketing.

Mistakes in this business can be unforgivable and cause you to lose clients. Put systems in place to ensure that you have fool-proof ordering and delivery systems.

4) The winners in this business all have extremely well thought through sales and marketing plans. They understand the market well, develop the right products and use the appropriate methods to market their products. Some high earners have devised sales processes that bring in corporate clients and they thrive in this area.

5) The top performers have a core product range of baskets that they know sell well but they also continue to innovate and try new things.

6) Branding is also important for building business value over the long term. A recognizable brand makes sales and marketing a lot easier than it is for a newly established brand. Brand development takes time but is well worth the effort.

7) Lastly, knowing how to hire and manage employees is a skill that can also help push your business over the ‘six figure’ barrier. To scale up your productivity to fulfill the volume of orders that you need to be highly profitable you need to have a team in place and know how to communicate with them to get things done.

As with most industries though, marketing is the key to success and the most difficult part of running a gift basket business is making sales. If you look at the best players in this business you will see that they have had their success by either mastering online sales, corporate sales or retailing.

Making a decent annual income is not impossible in the gift basket business if you focus on these success factors that typically separate the successful business from the amateurs.

Weslo Pursuit Bike Reviews

Weslo Pursuit exercise bikes are cheap, and I do mean cheap. You can pick one up for as little as $80 and the most you’ll ever pay is around $300. But, can a machine this cheap be any good? Well, the truth is that only some models are worth looking at and then only if you’re looking for an entry level bike and only plan on using it for light exercise. Here’s a review of Weslo Pursuit bikes.

The Weslo Pursuit 2.0 DS bike (WLEX0901) only costs around $80. Quite frankly the bike is simply too cheap to be anything more than a toy – a toddler’s bicycle costs more, so would you really expect to get any kind of decent workout from it? But, if you are still interested, the bike has cross-training arms that are designed to work the upper body. The arms can be operated independently of the pedals, so you don’t have to use them. Amazingly, it also comes with a small LCD console that displays speed, time, distance, calories burned. Well, that’s enough said about this particular machine, except to say that the seat and pedals are very cheap and uncomfortable – most toddler’s bikes have better but then again, they costs more and are better built.

It’s tough to find nice things to say about the next model up, the Pursuit 4.0 (WLEX1776). I suppose it’s cheap, costing around $150. It’s an upright model and does look quite nice and inoffensive in its green livery. You get a fairly decent console and a heart rate monitor in the handle bar grips. You also get 4 preset programs and a Target Pacer. The seat and pedals are okay and come with adequate adjustments. But frankly, you should only buy this bike if you plan on using it only occasionally; I can’t see it taking any kind of strenuous workout.

If you are going to buy a Weslo upright exercise bike buy the Pursuit E 40 (WLEX1994). For around $300 you get 8 preset programs, an EKG grip pulse sensor and a more robust frame. Again, I’m not sure how long it would last if it was really hammered, but for the casual user it’s a perfectly fine piece of fitness equipment.

Thinking of buying a Weslo recumbent exercise bike? Sure? Well, don’t even bother looking at either the Pursuit E21 recumbent (WLEX1402) or the Pursuit 6.0 DX (WLEX1304). I can’t begin to describe how inadequate these machines are, so I won’t.

Instead, let’s talk about the Pursuit E 45 or the Pursuit 4.5 R. They both cost around $180 and are the only recumbent models worth considering.

The 6.0 DX comes with a good sized LCD display, EKG grip heart rate monitor and 4 pacer programs. With the 4.5 R you get 6 personal trainer workout programs and an Easy Pulse heart rate monitor. Of the two machines I prefer the 4.5 R, it looks better and I like the overall styling as well as the 6 preset programs.

If you’re looking to buy a cheap exercise bike, then by all means consider a Weslo. Just be sure that you avoid the very cheap models and look towards buying the more expensive ones. Also, be sure that the bike is going to be okay for you in the long term; if you really think cycling is going to form a core part of your regular exercise program then maybe you should look at another brand instead.

Warehouse Artist Studios

An artist/bohemian type working for themselves is perceived in a variety of ways by the general public. A lot of the perception has to do with a combination of the artist’s cashflow and apparel strategy, as opposed to the stirrings of their soul. Strangely, as a young man, people often saw me as a responsible, solid guy. Ha!

In the early eighties I ran my screen printing operation out of a funky old warehouse by the railroad tracks in Eugene, Oregon. Enormous pastry and coffee in hand, I’d get to my shop a bit past nine and dig in for the day. Usually I’d run out of work between 1:00 and 3:00 pm, leaving the rest of the day to run, draw comics and hang out.

Being that the economy had had the shit kicked out of it just then, I was moderately proud that I’d been able to scape up enough business to keep a roof over my head… ultimately I turned enough of a profit to embark on my checkered career publishing my own wacky comic books, but that’s not the subject of this rant.

Warehouse Artists Studios was the literal name of the co-op warehouse wherein I rented space. The studio took up the second floor of a truly dilapidated old funkster warehouse that had most recently been used to store spices. Add to that the gay girls who lived illegally in the space next to mine, burning patchouli oil night and day. This place had a certain bouquet!

I’d been printing T-Shirt jobs out of my flat, and it was getting a bit ridiculous. At an opening in a local gallery, I saw a flyer for “Warehouse Artist Studios”, a 5000 square foot space that magically divided up the floor into 170 square foot units that rented for forty bucks a month. I went down the next day and rented two adjacent spaces, which apparently I’d be paying $75 or $80 a month for. A slight, nervous man named Lynn rented my space to me. He was the manager, he had a chair upholstering business in the studio. Straight away, I could see ‘ol Lynn was a duck seriously out of water.

This impression was dramatically confirmed like three days later when Lynn informed me that the Warehouse was failing economically, and that he was resigning as manager. He handed me the studio ledger and checkbook saying “you seem like an astute fellow, why don’t you manage this dump?”.

I was rather taken aback at this, but sure enough at the next meeting of the co-op, the members all but begged me to save their studio. I had my serious doubts, but figured there wasn’t much to lose, so why not? It wasn’t lost on me either that as manager my rent for my 340 square foot space dipped to $35.00 per month!

The co-op had about 12 members. We were several hundred dollars in the hole. We could pay rent, but couldn’t pay the heating bill. We were required to carry basic liability insurance, which had gone unpaid and lapsed, for starters. I sat down and did a bit of math. I figured if we raised the rent on the basic space about $10.00 a month for five months, and attracted a couple new members, we’d squeak by and could continue renting the dump.

The measure passed at the next meeting. At least with the eight or nine people who decided to stick it out, as a couple members dropped out with the news of the temporary rent increase; we did indeed need to attract new members straight away. We papered the town with flyers for the warehouse, and got free listings in any newspaper we could. Miraculously, the plan worked. We lowered the basic rent back to $40.00 per month ahead of schedule and got an infusion of fresh blood. I can’t take too much credit for it, as the place snapped to with an esprit de corps I’ve rarely encountered… I’d say it was goddamn grassroots socialism is action, almost.

Now here comes the fun part, the personalities that made the place click, the swashbucklers, crackpots, con men, assholes, and outright brilliant geniuses I encountered in my stint at Warehouse Artist Studios. First comes a woman named Kathy Caprario. She was a dramatic beauty from New York of Italian descent, the best known painter in Eugene, an “older woman” to me of maybe 33-35 years (I was all of 24 at the time). Kathy is the person who was singlehandedly most responsible for the survival of Warehouse Artist Studios at the time of the financial crises. To say she was resourceful and a bit of an aggressive shark is an understatement. For starters, she marched me down to see the owner of the owner of the building when the lease came up. The guy was a real estate money grubbing slum lord type, who claimed an artistic background. Right. Our rent was $650.00 per month. Kathy figured that Jeff, the slum lord, was lucky that anyone at all was renting this dump in a crappy ecomomy. She advises me to offer the guy $450.00 per month. No problem! It was an invaluable early lesson in having brass balls.

So we’re in this real estate lizard’s office, and I make the rent offer. Jeff, the lizard in question, completely ignores me and starts this serious, near lecherous flirt with Kathy. She plays this guy like a fiddle, and we walk out of there with a lease for the next year of $550.00 per month, a hundred bucks per month rent reduction. Yes folks, in 1982 in Eugene, you could rent a 5000 square foot studio for that low price. I should mention too, the year after that, Kathy had moved on to a private studio space, but I’d learned well and got that damn rent down to $475.00 per month!

Kathy also had us apply for City of Eugene room tax grants. Turns out there was actual civic support for the arts afoot! We hastily threw together grant applications to run a gallery in our common space, such as it was, and to offer figure drawing sessions to the public. Given the level of initial interest in these projects, we all saw it as a way to get the city to help pay our rent with minimal execution of said projects.

But who knew! The figure drawing sessions maintained a core of attendance for a couple years. The gallery stared off as nothing–an unrented space was hung with art. But before long, a 22 year old painter of promise named Mike Perkin rented a space and started doing some pretty cool work in his cubicle. He tried his best to ape Francis Bacon, but the works looked a bit like Francis was a werewolf Mexican wrestler or something.

When it came Mike’s turn to show his work, he turned a critical eye at the tiny room where I asked him to hang his paintings. He asked me if I had the studio checkbook. What do you have in mind, Mike? He directed me to the Eugene Planing Mill, a massive lumber yard across the street from us. “Let’s stud up couple walls so I can hang my big paintings”. Outragous! Here’s this wild kid, plays the same tapes over and over (Scarey Monsters by Bowie, anything by Lou Reed) and yells at his paintings. At the drop of a hat, we get some lumber and flail away for a couple hours with hammers. Before you know it, instant gallery! We build some pretty decent walls in a jiffy (other studio members drifted in a pitched in) and whitewashed them.

Mike’s paintings for that show were terrific. They were done in ruddy reds, earthtones and orangey yellows, with wood and burlap assemblage fastened to the canvases. The average size was maybe 3′ across by almost 5′ tall. My favorite was called “The Inside of Lou Reed’s Stomach”. If I wasn’t blowing every cent on publishing comic books, I woulda bought it. The opening was a revelation. Mike’s family showed up, and they were the most amazing bunch of open minded art, theatre, film and literature lovers you could imagine. A lotta beer went down. I remember late at night, Mike’s mom was wrestling on the studio floor with one of her four sons. From there on in, our little gallery stood a few decent shows, and even better parties. And through it all, the city kept the checks coming!

Keith the retired Air Force colonel is next in our cast of characters. Bald, prim, post heart attack, gentle former Texan Keith. A late life painter, an ultra practical man. Ruled by logic on the outside, soft as a grape inside, he had a good heart even if it was failing him, he did his share to keep the warehouse afloat. He painted small landscapes that revealed a luminous take on Oregon’s rainy colors. Nothin’ amazing, but nice. Fluid, painterly, sea foam light permeating the canvas with a bit of warm ochre and alizarin crimson, tacking it to the surface of the earth.

Keith enjoyed regaling the Warehouse crew over beers with stories of flying B-52’s through mushroom clouds after bomb tests in the Pacific, back in the day. Knowing that I was involved in the anti-nuke movement of the day, he teased me “I did H-Bomb tests all day long, and I’m not glowing yet”.

Although he had a son who was around forty, Keith took a fatherly interest in me, and used to take me to lunch in his enormous four door GM pickup truck (with one of those worthless diesel engines they tried to manufacture for a couple years). He’d take us to the local Lions clubhouse. The food sucked. He’d insist we have a beer with lunch, which I didn’t like as I usually would go for a run later in the day. Hell Steve, have a beer, indulge the old boy! Unbidden, he told me his life story. Before retirement, had risen as an assistant to one of the joint chiefs of staff. After retiring from the military, he’d been a ROTC instructor on the University of Oregon campus in the sixties. He’d have run ins with various rag-tag groups of pseudo Maoist college kids. Then one summer, Keith and his wife were vacationing in the Cascade mountains east of Eugene. Hiking in the foothills, they came upon an encampment where some of these same youths were enacting a military training drill with assault rifles! They were indeed serious about the revolution bit. After a tense momentary face off with no word exchanged, Keith and his wife turned on their heel and hiked out. “I felt like I had a target on my back”, he said, adding that he never saw those kids again.

There was another older painter at the studio, one Nick Nickolds. He was maybe 60-65 at the time. He was the real deal, a life long bohemian, painter and philosopher dedicated to the pursuit of his art. He’d been an orphan from Denver who lived the middle decades of his life in Mexico. Nick scored the studio to the right at the top of the stairs. It was the best studio there, as it had a separate private entrance.

Nick Nickolds painted in a style that at once reminded me of William Blake and Titian. His color was rich, saturated and full of light, yet he built up layers of delicate glazes that gave body and air to his figures. He was painting the figure, faces, and the natural world, yet it was semi abstract. It was as if Blake had decided to lapse into abstraction and gotten about 73% there before deciding he still had to have a face here, an eye or a breast there.

This work was technically masterful and evoked images and emotion like a skeleton key. It alluded to everything while putting it’s finger on nothing, like a Robert Hunter lyric. Nick was so consistently true, dignified and full of heart that you had to love him. He was a slightly rotund, dapper little man with ample sparkle in his eye.

Once, Nick showed me a vial full of crystalline dust, claiming that it was a sort of emulsified, crystal LSD. He stuck a pin in it, putting a minuscule amount on the head of the pin. “That’s enough”, he said. He claimed he’d had the vial for years, had been in San Francisco in the sixties with it (it was full back then). He asserted he’d provided hundreds and hundreds of trips from his little vial. Today, I almost wonder if I made that part of the story up! It just sounds too good to be true.

Nick was a guy who was always fascinating, who revealed himself to me a little bit at a time as we became friends. He approved of my comic books, and my attempts to explain the nature of reality, time, the singularity of the eternal now in cartoon form, and all that jazz. Nick told me I was on the right track as an artist. “All you have to do is be careful about the beer”, he advised me, and boy was he right, as I developed enough of a drinking habit that I ultimately had to stop altogether for my own good. Nick eventually moved back into what he considered the morass of Marin County, as he had money connections down in California. I never saw him again, don’t know if he’s still around or not. I often reflect on what Nick taught me about maintaining integrity as an artist, and about having respect for every human being regardless of anything. I consider it immense good fortune to have known Nick and been his friend, albeit for only a couple of years.

P.S. Nick is indeed still around, at http://www.nicknickolds.com

Freak Magnet!

If you manage to set yourself up as a successful Boho freelancer/self employed artist, you will attract an amazing array of people from all walks of life to bask in your glory. Say what? Take my word for it, people will be attracted to your good thang, offering everything from sublime lessons in human dignity, to blatantly vampiric attempts to hi-jack your time and energy.

With a bit of practice, it becomes easy to recognize the latter–within minutes of meeting the vampiric leach, they attempt to wrangle the discourse to a place where you are somehow in the position of owing them something; most often a deep discount on your product or service. You’ll see a red flag, and you will get rid of them asap. Try adding a 50% “asshole fee” to your usual rate. When they get ugly, be sweet as pie but stick to your guns. And remember, you don’t owe them a thing.

The other sort, offering the sublime lesson, a peek into the bottomless well of the beauty of the human spirit, can be a real pleasure. They will probably try your patience a bit too, but it’s worth it. My rule of thumb is to attempt to offer the same basic respect to any person I come across in the course of my business. Easier said than done, but something to aim for.

As a self employed freak magnet, it’s been my great pleasure to encounter quite an array of swashbucklers. How about the charismatic actor who financed his theater company (and his t-shirts) with a successful drug dealing operation? He did quite well with it, but I guess his success was tempered by the little fact that he was a junkie…

One of my favorite encounters with an unusual person came early in my “career”, when I maintained a screen printing operation at Warehouse Artist Studios in Eugene, Oregon in the early ’80s. One fine rainy morning, when nothing much was going on, a slightly bellicose balding guy named Abner Burnett stepped through the door and asked how much I would charge to print one t-shirt. Sorry, minimum order is two dozen. OK, how much for two dozen?

Abner ends up ordering something like 2 shirts. He understands that the economies of scale are not working for him, that with set up charges, these will be very expensive shirts, but he doesn’t seem to mind. I wish I could remember what the design was–it may have had something to do with his beloved Chevy Vega (those were great cars, right up there with the Ford Pinto!). As Abner cuts me a downpayment check, he notes that he lives off a trust fund, and is bored, and is really glad he met me. Great.

When will the shirts be done? I can print them on Tuesday, I’ll call you when they are done.

Arriving at the warehouse on Tuesday morning, I am less than thrilled to find Abner at the door waiting for me with a curious half smile on his face. This is the first time I think, “axe murderer”. Turns out Abner wants to watch me print his shirts. He wants to learn about screen printing. Usually, it unnerves me to have a customer watch a production run, but hey, it’s only two shirts. And, Abner said he wants to learn about screen printing. He said the magic words. I love teaching people how to screen print. I figure it’s like teaching a poor man to fish. Or, it’s like giving someone a lesson in a tool that can be used to exercise your first amendment rights. So I am into it.

As I set up and print his job, Abner opines, “Mr. Lafler, I can tell that you are independently wealthy”. I bark out such a hearty laugh that I almost botch a print. “What makes you say that, Abner?”

“Well, you just leisurely hang out at your studio every day, doing just what you want.”

The fact is, Mr. Burnett, I am here in the studio to try to scrape together a couple bucks, with which to buy some burritos, beer and a can of food for Ed, my cat. If I make some extra cash, maybe I’ll publish a comic book or two, but independently wealthy? Ha!

Abner pays for his shirts, and he’s gone. I enjoyed the encounter, but I also was happy that it’s over. Or so I thought. Abner started showing up at my studio almost daily, to “learn screen printing”. He would stand there, half glassy eyed, issuing a series of loosely related comments that weren’t quite non sequiturs. One day I tried to leave, just to shake him. “Where you going?”, Abner wants to know. “I’m going to get some screen printing supplies”, I say. Abner wants to drive. Oh hell, why not? I don’t have a car.

Although I didn’t exactly like Abner, I was just a bit fascinated by him. What the hell was he up to? What was his story? He kinda gave me the creeps, but he exuded a thickly benign sense of serenity.

The jig was up one day when he came in, affable yet strangely agitated at the same time. What’s up, Abner? “Mr. Lafler, I’m a diagnosed paranoid schizophrenic, and I didn’t take my medication today”.

Okay. That explained a lot. Abner came around a few more times, then I guess he lost interest. As mentioned, he made me rather nervous, yet I was curious enough about him to indulge his presence. I like to think he was just another manifestation of Buddha nature, come to teach me a lesson, or something like that.

Pre Employment Screening: Applicant Tracking Solutions With This Feature

When hiring new employees, background checks are essential. More specifically, pre-employment background checks are used by many companies before they even consider hiring someone. The screening process for a potential employee will give you the appropriate information you need to see if they are the right fit for you and your company.

There are many bullet points under the pre-employment screening process that a recruiter professional might want to consider. The first is a credit report. Some employers, for one reason or another, decide to hire a candidate based on their credit report – but they can not just obtain one freely. According to the Fair Credit Reporting Act, before an employer obtains a credit report they must get written consent from the candidate. A copy of the credit report must be given to the applicant and they have the right to challenge the report. Bankruptcies, which can also apply to a pre-employment screening can appear on a candidate or employee's credit report. However, discriminating or hiring based on a person who has filed for bankruptcy is prohibited under the Federal Bankruptcy Act.

Education is often a factor when it comes to the hiring process. Even so, there are regulations when it comes to obtaining school records such as transcripts. Along with some state laws, the Family Educational Rights and Private Act are to remain confidential and require permission from the student.

Another facet of the pre-employment screening process are criminal records. A candidate's criminal past can also help inform a recruiting professional's decision. However, there are regulations that vary from state to state when it comes to hiring a candidate based on their criminal history so it would be wise to consult with a law professional so that everything is compliant.

The use of lie detector test in a pre-employment screening process is not allowed under the Employee Polygraph Protection Act. There are some exceptions such as security guard services, alarm system professionals, businesses that utilize armored car services and many who are involved in the pharmaceutical business.

Medical records also play a role in pre-employment screening . Again, an employer can not discriminate against a potential employee based on a persons physical or mental disability. This is prohibited by the Americans with Disabilities Act. However, an employer can ask about a candidate's ability to do the tasks of the job they are applying for. For example, if the applicant is applying for a job that requires heavy lifting, the employer can ask if they do have the ability to perform tasks that require heavy lifting.

There are many ins and outs when it comes to the pre-employment screening process. By knowing what to screen for and how to screen for it, a business can make their hiring process effortless.

2012 Toyota Highlander / Kluger Review

First produced in 2000 as a 2001 model, car enthusiasts didn’t expect much from this car. The mini SUV market was already dominated by Jeep, Ford, Dodge and even Toyota’s own 4Runner, so we waited to see what the Japanese were up to this time. They did not let us down, and as their motto says ‘moving forward’, they did not just move – they ran and overtook everyone!

Current Highlander

Costing from $28,240 – $37,195 the 2012 model is no different from the 2011 one, just an insignificant increase in price. In fact was i buying one i would go for the 2011 model, which averaged a 4.8 out of 5 score against the 2012 model at 4.6 on consumer reviews. It is bigger than previous Highlander models, entering into the aggressive world of cars like Jeep Traverse and leaving the lesser folk whining in their cots. It is a smooth ride, very stylish handling and the fuel economy is still something to build on. As for the driving experience, don’t expect much from it. All of the Highlander models tend to lull you into simply setting the cruise control and conversing with passengers; the electric power steering tends to be light, and the optional four-wheel-drive system does give it a chance at slogging through a muddy driveway, deep snow, or rutted trails. The cabin is very quiet, with an agreeable combination of comfort, control and driving quality though driver engagement is quite diminutive. Trailblazing in safety is the 2012 Highlander, being named the best by IIHS and scoring no less than a four-star rating in the tough federal tests. This among other features parlayed it to win as the best family SUV, a slot it might just cling onto for a while. Other highlights include upgraded leather upholstery, keyless entry/ignition, tri-zone climate control, power passenger seat and downhill assist control and hill-start assist on the AWD models. As a matter of fact the Highlander, known as Kluger in Japan and Australia was the best-selling Toyota crossover SUV before being overtaken in 2006 by the smaller RAV4.


Three trim levels are offered for non-Hybrid Toyota Highlander models: base, SE, and Limited. The limited and base models were present when the car was initially introduced, but the sport model was introduced in 2006 with a distinctively furious grille design. In Australia it was available in three guises: CV, CVX, and Grande, while a limited edition CV Sport model was also released in 2006. There was no hybrid model available in Australia, the only engine being the 3.3-liter 3MZ-FE. All have cruise control, power features, and a third-row seat. A 3.5-inch multifunction display, satellite radio and USB port are added in the SE, while the Limited gets leather-trimmed power seats. Base and Limited trims apply to Highlander Hybrid models, with equipment roughly in sync. A power moonroof, a navigation system, sound-system upgrades, and a power tailgate are among the many option possibilities that can potentially drive the bottom-line price up by thousands.


The Toyota Highlander crossover SUV can seat up to seven passengers, as of models beginning 2004. The third-row seat is smaller than what you’ll find in most competitors, and is really only suitable for children, and the boot space is greatly compromised. However, the middle section of the Highlander’s second-row seats folds away into its own receptacle, leaving you with a pair of captain’s chairs — just like in a minivan. Another added bonus is that these seats slide and recline. At the front are little spaces conveniently placed for family use and the guests at the rear have their own climate control, having not to disturb you as you tune your favourite music. The second row is equipped with a removable centre section that creates an alley from the front seats to the third row seats, and it can also move 4.7 inches to and fro depending on where you want extra space.


Available engines include a 2.7-liter 4-cylinder for the front drive SE model and a more powerful V6 is optional on the base and standard on the sport 4WD and Limited trims. The specifications are as follows:

2.7 liter 4-cylinder

187 horsepower @5800 rpm

186 lb.-ft of torque @4100 rpm

EPA city/highway fuel economy 20/25

3.0 liter V6

270 horsepower @6200 rpm

248 lb.-ft of torque @4700 rpm

EPA city/highway fuel economy 18/24 (FWD), 17/22 (4WD), 28/28 (Hybrid)

It is not a wonder this car won the best family SUV, it is rather a wonder it has maintained high market preference since its inception, being Toyota’s crossover SUV to ever get close to the Lexus LS 400 legacy. The Honda Pilot is a quick bet on this, though for more power a Dodge Durango would do, but my take is still none other. I think it’s the high time i changed my low regard for Toyota.

Landlord Tips And Tricks

Every real estate investor dealing in rental homes has done his own clean-up and fix-up, at least in the early years. Landlords also became very skilled at managing tenants after being burned a few times.

You learn the tricks of the trade and how to get the best results for the least cost. Maybe a few of these tips will be new to you.

You can give kitchen cabinets new life with a liberal application of Liquid Gold.

Everyone has at least one chip or scratch in the porcelain on their refrigerator, bathtub, stove (except high heat surfaces), sink, washer or dryer. The solution? Touch up that nick with a tough porcelain glaze called "Porcelain Chip Repair". Just dab it on with the built in brush and it hardens in 24 hours. If your hardware store does not carry it you can find it with a Google search.

You can quickly clean black scuff marks from vinyl floor covering with a squirt of WD 40 lubricant and a rub with a clean cloth.

Put a shiny new strainer in the sink drain. Then install new handles and drawer pulls and you often have a minor kitchen miracle.

Get rid of globs of sticky adhesive residue with Goo Gone.

When tenants move out they seldom do a really good cleaning job on the oven … or the dishwasher.

I'm sure you have discovered the many effective oven cleaners, but how about that gunk caked onto the inside of the dishwasher?

Try a product called "Dishwasher Magic" … found in many markets and some hardware stores.

The label reads "Removes Lime Scale, Rust & Buildup. Disinfectant".

You just remove the cap … place the blue, plastic bottle upside down inside the silverware basket and turn the machine on. You might have to use two bottles if your first look into the washer causes you to run screaming from the house.

When vinyl flooring is ready to be replaced use commercial grade floor tile instead. It lasts almost forever and it is cheap to replace a damaged tile now and then.

Have you ever received an unsigned rent check? Here's a method that often allows you to deposit that check.

Write or type the word "over" on the line where the signature would normally appear. On the back of the check type "lack of signature guaranteed". Add your company's name, and your name and title. Then you sign it on the back.

This guarantees your bank that you will take back the check as a charge against your account if is is not honored. Many banks will then process the check and remit the funds. This saves you the trouble of returning the check to your renter for a signature.

Spot those bad checks with this tips. 90% of bad checks are numbered 101 to 150, indicating a new account.

Legitimate checks have at least one perforated edge. Most forgeries are cutouts of copy machine created fakes.

Checks dated more than six months ago are usually not cashable, no matter how much money the issuer has in his / her account.

If the amounts written on a check in words is different from he amount written in numbers, the bank will pay the sum shown in words.

If you receive a check with the date missing, it's legal to fill in a date reasonably close to the date you receive it. To predate or postdate the check by several weeks is a criminal act … do not do it.

Remember, landlording is not for sissies. I hope these tips will save you a few dollars and a barrel full of aggravation.

Stuff For Your Weimaraners

There are lots of things you can do to keep your Weimaraners attractive as well as healthy and happy. Nutritious diet, regular exercise, grooming and vaccines against various diseases are the most important things your Weimaraners need. Apart from that, you need some supplies to make life a little easy both for you and your dog. Wide selection of dog stuff is available in any pet and grocery stores. Some are really necessary while some are mere decoration or luxury. Below is the list of some of the important stuff your Weimaraners need.

Dog Bed

The bed should be a place where your pet feels safe and comfortable, a place that your dog will love and he can call his own. It should be soft, durable, washable and large enough for him to curl up on. Decoration and style doesn’t really matter when choosing the right bed for your dog. And remember, the bed should not be used as a punishment tool.

Food and Water Bowls

Food and water bowls should always be included in the list of must-haves when it comes to dog supplies. Get one that is sturdy, unbreakable and has a steady base. Stainless steel and heavy bowls are recommended to prevent your Weimaraners from moving it around the house, saving yourself from looking for it during meal time.


A collar could be made of nylon, metal, cotton or leather. It is placed around your dog’s neck for control, identification, fashion or other purposes. The collar should not be too tight nor too loose either. A dog collar correctly fits if you could be able to place your two to four fingers between the dog’s neck and his collar. Ask the vet, trainer or knowledgeable sales attendant for instructions as to the proper use of the chosen collar. Some collars can damage your dog’s neck or trachea when misused.

Identification Tags

It is important that your dog wears ID tags whenever outside. The tag should include information such as your dog’s name, your name and contact number. You can also include your dog’s medical condition if there is any.


The leash need not be beautifully adorned but should be strong enough to withstand your dog pulling on it. Select the right leash for your dog depending on his size, personality and strength.


A crate is an ideal place to confine your dog when you’re not home or when you’re traveling. It is usually made of metal, wire or plastic. It comes in variety of sizes, so choose one that is appropriate for your dog’s size.

Is Your Career Stuck in Park? Time to Switch Gears With a Good Career Plan

Changing companies can be a huge decision for many people. They have worked in the same place for a few years and are comfortable with there surroundings and coworkers. They also know what to expect from their boss and the company its self. It is easy to start to feel a sense of security working for an employer you have been with for three years or more. By the two year mark you have a handle on office politics and have formed friendships with some of your coworkers. You get your three to five percent raise each year and may have received a promotion or two during your time with the company. All of these sounds great but are you were you want to be professionally? If not is career growth possible with your current employer? How long will you have to wait for your next promotion? Do your coworkers see you as someone they can respect as a boss or as a friend they can take advantage of if you reach a supervisor position? If your answers to these questions are not what you hoped they would be it is time to start thinking of taking a new direction professionally.

Working for the same company for thirty years just does not happen much anymore. Companies these days consider anyone and any office expendable. There are many people out there who have worked for the same company for twenty years and received their walking papers because the company went bankrupt or they moved their office to a new location. Many of these workers have been working the same job for the entire twenty years or more. It is easy to become complacent when you have a job you like with coworkers you get along with. Many people think about looking for work somewhere ells but because they are comfortable where they are at they never take the steps needed to further their career. A good friend of mine, Doug Luthringer, once told me, "A good CEO is hungry not full." This is a great saying and it rings true if you want to have a successful career. You may not be a CEO but if you want career promotion you have to be hungry not full. You have to push yourself to do things like further your education, volunteer for new assignments, and be willing to move to another company if your current one does not have the opportunities you are looking for. If you keep putting off the steps you need to take to achieve your career goals you will find yourself in the same spot ten years later.

The First Step: Creating a Career Plan

The first step you need to take is to go back and look at the career goals you set for yourself before you started your current job. You then need to make any revisions if need be or if you never wrote any down it is time to do so. Before you can work to achieve your goals you have to first know what your goals are. You then need to clearly define each goal and what you have to do to complete it. If becoming a city manager is one of the goals you can define it simply by "… become a city manager …" and to complete it you write "when you are a city manager this goal is complete". It is important to list multiple goals that take you closer and closer to your main goal. Instead of simply having "become a city manager" you may want to add a few "stepping stone goals" before that like "become office manager" and "finish your Business Degree". As you complete each "stepping stone goal" you have a sense of achievement and get closer to reaching your main goal.

The next thing you want to do is set the date at which you want to complete each goal. It is important to set a date that is realistic. If you set a deadline that you have no chance of meeting you may feel like you have failed. When it comes to failure you have to be able to shake it off and recommit yourself. Have faith that you have the steps laid out that are going to enable you to reach your objective. If something does not go as planned simply make some revisions and add new steps that you may not have known about before. A career goal is a clearly defined objective. It takes many career goals to make up a career plan. A career goal will always have the same definition but how you get to it may change. The path you take to achieve goals is part of your career plan and it is always changing. It is important to embrace change if you want a successful career plan because what is true today may not be true tomorrow. Educational standards may change while you are working towards a goal so you will have to extend your deadline if a new class comes out that is required to reach your goal. As ready as you have to be to except change you have to stick to your deadlines as much as possible. If your goal is to complete your education in one year but you find out you need to take one more semester because of a new curriculum only postpon your deadline by one semester.

Second Step: Look for Opportunities

As you start to complete your "stepping stone goals" see if your company has any opportunities for you to advance and reach your goals faster. As you complete steps you will be more and more qualified for the kind of job you want to have. Let your company know about any new schooling or training that you have completed and see if they have any positions open that you can interview for. As you complete more goals you should become more and more over qualified for the position you currently have. See if the company has someplace where they can utilize your new skills. If they do great, you can stay where you are at. But if they do not you will want to start looking for a new job with a company that has plenty of room for you to grow professionally. If you are ever given a job to do that is above your pay scale do it without complaining and do it good. They may be getting work done cheaper by having you do it without promoting you but you are getting valuable experience that you can take with you to your new job.

Now that you know that your current company is not a place that you can achieve your goals you have to start looking at other companies. You need to put a resume together and start applying for jobs. The wider area you perform your job search in the better chances you have getting the job you want. If you are willing to go were the jobs are at you should not have a hard time finding a job that get you closer to your main career goal. Since you are currently employed you have leverage when it comes to negotiations. Before that though it is important that you find out what you are worth. There are various places on the web that can give you the average salary of different positions in various industries. Decide what a company will have to pay to get you to sign with them and then increase it by fifteen to twenty percent. When negotiating stick to your guns and walk away if they do not give you something close to your asking price. Youave them a buffet by adding the fifteen to twenty percent and if they do not come close to your price you have to be willing to walk away. If the first company that contacts you does not offer you sufficient wait until the next company offers you something better. When you change companies you are looking for a higher position than the one you have and a much larger pay check. The biggest jump in pay someone will see in their career will be the times they changed companies. There is no reason to move companies if you are going to put yourself in the same situation. You may find that by changing companies you increased your earnings by fifty percent or more and moved into a job title that is two or three levels up from where you were at.

Final Step: Build a Good Reputation & Network

Once you start your new job it is important to give a good first impression. Do your job and do it well. Build up a good reputation for yourself from day one by being fair to subordinates and getting the job done. Show your boss that he or she made a smart decision by hiring you. The key to advancement in a company is by either making them a lot of money or making your superiors look good. If you make your company a lot of money either by increasing productivity or expanding there market you will find yourself fast tracked to hire positions within that company. The same will happen by making your bosses look good. If you make your superiors look good they will take you with them as they climb the corporate ranks. The biggest mistake you can make is becoming to friendly with those who work under you. You want to be friendly but you may have to make hard decisions or discipline them at some point. You need to keep your personal life and professional life separate if you want to have a successful career.

When you are going to do something with someone from your company make sure it is a networking opportunity. You do not want to be in the crowd that hangs out and complains about their job and their boss at the local watering hole. You want to be with those who want to see you succeed and by doing so make them look good. Yes, you are now in management and you have to start networking with your superiors. You will find yourself invited to events or dinners from time to time by your superiors and it is something you can not turndown. You need to go to these things so you can show that your are personable and are someone who can handle any kind of business setting. By going to these functions you will be able to meet some new faces that you may only know by their pictures at the top of the company newsletter. It is important to relax a little bit but remember these people are your superiors and as friendly as they are you need to have professionally. Take any business cards that are offered to you and return the favor by giving them yours.

You Are Ready

Now that you know the steps you have to take, it's time to start putting them to work. Do not put it off until tomorrow you need to start working on it today or the next thing you know it will be ten years later and you are still in the same place. Start by making and defining your main career goal and then add your "stepping stone goals" that will get you closer to achieving it. Start to work on the first "stepping stone goal" and go from there. If you find that you need to change companies it may be hard but many time all people need is a fresh start where people do not know them. It can be hard to move out of your comfort zone but it is something you need to do to further your career. If you ever hit a career road block again go back to step one and start again.

Why Alabama is Called the Crimson Tide

Up until the year 1906, the sports team from University of Alabama was referred to as either the “varsity” or “Crimson White,” referring to the school colors; then, in 1906, Hugh Roberts used the phrase “Crimson Tide” when he was describing a game against Auburn in Birmingham that was played in red mud. Auburn was favored to win, but Alabama played a great game, thus the beginning of their name. However, it was former sports editor of the Birmingham News, Zipp Newman, who was responsible for popularizing the name.

When you think “tide,” you think of the sea or some body of water. You don’t really think of it as a name for a school’s athletic team. Additionally, their mascot is an elephant. How did it come about that they are now known as the Alabama Crimson Tide.

Before the tide

Newspaper accounts from the early 1900s on Alabama football referred to the football team from the University of Alabama as the “varsity” or the “Crimson White,” a nod to the school colors. After a while, they were referred to as the “Thin Red Line.” This was a nickname that stuck until 1906.

The coming of the tide

In the 1907 Iron Bowl, Alabama faced off against Auburn in Birmingham. This game is also remarkable as the last contest between the two schools until 1948, when the Iron Bowl resumed.

This game happened to be played in a sea of red mud, and Auburn was heavily favored to win; yet the “Thin Red Line” apparently played a good game, and they held the game to tie at 6-6. Upon reporting about the game, Hugh Roberts, the former sports editor for Birmingham Age Herald, used the phrase “Crimson Tide” in describing the team. And since then, the name stuck.

It should also be noted that although, Hugh Roberts is credited with coining the phrase, it was Zipp Newman (former sports editor for the Birmingham News), among so many other writers, that popularized the name when referring to the team.

Fostering – Be Prepared

Before you start the foster process, it's advisable to identify the type of care you are willing to provide. Remember children entering into the system have all different needs, some children will have special needs, some will require urgent care for only a few hours or days, while there are those that require long term care and may be in your home for years or until They are old enough to start work and move out of home.

It is very difficult when it comes to foster, you need to remember that this is not adoption and therefore there will come a time when you have to let the child in your care leave. They can leave for various reasons. They may be returning home and only stayed with you while their parent was ill or in hospital, they may be adopted by another family and it's time for them to go to their forever home or they may head off to university and it's the same as saying Goodbye to your own children as you watch them head off to start their own lives. Fostering can be difficult and you need to ensure that you are prepared and able to hand the child back when it is time to do so.

Ensure you plan ahead. Remember a child coming into your care under the foster system is likely to leave in the future. This can be in a couple of days, weeks, months or years. Planning ahead enables you to stay goodbye and also know what you are going to say to ensure the child understands why they are leaving and why they can not stay with you. A child that has been in your care and has settled into a good routine in a stable home is not going to understand that they have now been adopted and they have to leave. Your foster care specialist agency should be able to provide you with the necessary support, enabling you to explain it to the child so they understand what is going to happen moving forward.

In addition to this, be realistic about what you can manage. If you work or if you are home all day will determine if you can take on a very young child or whether you should focus on taking on school aged children that will be at school while you are working. Further remember some of these children have special needs, which can be anything from serious disabilities to learning difficulties. You need to identify with your social worker to identify what you feel you can manage. There is no right or wrong and if you feel you do not have what it takes to manage a child with severe disabilities, then be honest to ensure that you always provide the best home environment for every child in your care at all times.

Expect some difficulty. Some of the children that come to your home may be very untrusting. Remember that they have not had the best start in life, so expect some difficulty in terms of behavior, acting out and maybe even being too clingy. Take comfort in the fact that you can not control everything, be patient and work with your support team to ensure you have the support you need at all times.

Pay Day Loans – Avoid the Trap!

Put simply, a Pay Day loan (or its equivalent, called by fancier names like Advance Pay or Cash Advance or Convenient Cash) are high rate loans that either are designed or result in “trapping” its users for a long-term addiction to such loans. One study estimates that the average rate of interest (if calculated, since such loans do not “charge interest, but charge a fee for their service”) is about 390% per annum! So in fact for every dollar borrowed, you pay three dollars in interest in a year.

Now here is a quiz.

How often do Pay Day users return to use the same service at the same usurious (imputed) interest rate?

Again, a study estimates, about 76% of the time!

So like a narcotic, once you get addicted to receiving a Pay Day loan, most of you will not get out of the hell-hole for a long time. That is because most of us, as humans, tend to do what comes of a habit.

So typically you to the Pay Day window say on a Friday of the week you do not get paid. You “pledge” your next week’s paycheck for a fee. How much fee? say 5% of the pay check. Small amount of fee, right? WRONG! You are paying 5% effectively for a week, since your paycheck will already have been cashed next week by the lender. 5% a week amounts to 260% per annum.

It would of course be ridiculous to think of it that way if you were never to return to that window. So you pay 5% that week and live happily ever after, never darkening the Pay Day door. Unfortunately, as statistics show, most of the Pay Day users are repeat offenders. Yes I say offenders because they are robbing their family of hard earned dollars.

Pay Day lenders justify their practice, which by the way is perfectly legal, since the usual usury laws do not apply to them, in a variety of ways. And in fairness, they do serve a purpose–but similar to a doctor prescribing pain killers to an addict. Among the reasons cited by them: high default rate, high risk, difficulty in recovering bad loans, absence of alternative lenders who can serve this sector etc.

So the important question is–what can you do to avoid Pay Day borrowing. Here are some tips.



S is for saving

M is for managing your expenditures

A is for accumulating useful assets

R is for reducing debt

and finally

T is for tracking your yields.

The important thing is to Start Saving. Force yourself to look at every item of cash expenditure and credit card and debit card expenditures (latter are considered “non-cash”). Here are some ways:

  1. Forget changing your wardrobe each season. Most of us, men or women, can do fine with about 10-12 pairs of wardrobe–and that includes shoes, ladies and jackets and ties, men!
  2. Eat out only on special occasions. If you have an urge to eat out, try cooking a new recipe at home. It is a great way to bond with your spouse, son, daughter or older parent
  3. Start a home business, even as a hobby, but make sure it does not burn cash beyond a reasonable period, like 3-6 months
  4. Start a retirement plan, a college plan for your child, or simply a 401 K if your employer offers one. You will be surprised how quickly you can adapt to living without that slice of your pay check
  5. If you have to borrow, try a lower amount with a bank–and insist on paying back over a shorter period. Even borrowing from your 401K is better than Pay Day
  6. Maximize your home loan or home equity loan

Good Luck. And please, please, stay out of Pay Day loans. They can be as harmful to your financial health as drug overdose for your body.

Installation of LED – The New Lighting Technology Trend

Unlike other traditional lights which require bundles of cables and drain a lot of power, LED lights are much simpler to use and easy to install. The cluster of these miniature size lights are fixtures made in such an efficient way that they are capable of illuminating any area of your choice. Installing LED lights in your residential or commercial application will help keep environment green, save your energy cost and above all, makes you a smart owner who follows latest technology trends.

Every lighting technology has some attributes that determines its nature and requirements of installation. Similar is the case with LED, you need to think, decide and plan precisely to get LED fixtures properly installed in your place. LEDs uses are versatile and so its type and specifications are also varied in accordance to the application. LEDs are applicable in both dry and wet areas, knowing the proper fixture available for each will surely make your installation process easier.

So let’s have a look at different type of LED lighting products available to decorate your desired region:

  • LED strip lights: These lights are in the form of a long run cable that have LEDs mounted in it. This row of LEDs are often used to illuminate sides, boundaries and edges of windows, decks, pools and many similar objects.
  • LED light fixture: Such type of lights have a cluster of LEDs enclosed in one unit. They provide adjustable angle and directed lighting with high lumen rating. They can be fitted beneath a cabinet, underwater pool surface and roof top application.
  • LED light bulbs: Look similar to traditional incandescent and CFL bulbs, but provide a brighter and more consistent stream of light using very low power. They are efficient and used to replace any conventional bulb fittings.

All these types of lights come in different voltages and current rating, and can be AC or DC. For wet application they come in waterproof form and greater intensity to enlighten under water features. Pentair, Zodiac, Philips are some of the renowned brands that provide these cool lights for all possible applications.

Some general steps that must be followed prior to any type of LED light installation are described here. These are common outlines that results in safer and effective LED set ups at your residence.

Determine the run limit for LED fixture: Run is actually a section of strip light that glows continuously with a single power source. Observing its limit according to your application will result in a safer installation.

Provide constant power supply (recommended 12V): Fluctuation in power supply results in reduction of LED lights life. Feeding it with a constant low voltage supply will improve the capacity and protect against power surges.

Use right gauge wires: Gauge or thickness of wire is an important factor that must be considered in large LED installations. Wire should have a low voltage drop in order to transfer electricity to the fixture efficiently.

Follow the instruction manual of LED kit: This one is really important for a safe and perfect installation. The manual contains the essential warning and safety information along with the well-defined steps to install an LED fixture. So it must be read out for a proper installation.

LED lighting technology is becoming common to use for dramatic swimming pool lighting. As it is not heated up and resistant to shock, it would be a preferable to use for underwater application. The installation tactics for lighting swimming pool with LEDs are somewhat different, but installed in a similar way like normal pool lights. It will prove durable and economical for wet applications and at the end result will look very attractive if placed properly.

The steps to consider while installing LED lights in your wet areas are:

  • The junction box that houses all essential connections and wiring should be located at least 8 inches above the ground and at least 48 inches from the edges of the pool.
  • All the light fixtures and metal objects are properly electrically bonded within five feet of the pool.
  • The wet niche or underwater lens is suitably installed at least 18 inches below the surface of water in the pool. It must be grounded well via AWG ground connector.
  • Install each light fixture spaciously to illuminate water with equivalent brightness and make careful electrical connections.
  • From safety point of view the pool lighting circuit has a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupter (GFCI) for line voltage fixture and has a relevantly rated circuit breaker.

All these steps discussed here will lead you to complete LED lighting installation for both wet and dry area. Finally, after completing the installation, testing is performed to check the validity and performance of LED lighting.

Testing: The overall electrical system can be verified with a qualified test kit provided by the manufacturer. The inspection must be performed by skilled and certified personnel to ensure that system meets applicable requirements and specifications.

There are many popular brands available in LED pool lightening market that gives you brilliant multi-colors with spectacular effects. Some of them are Pentair’s IntelliBrite pool lights, Zodiac WaterColor LED light systems, Pentair Color LED IntelliBrite Lights. These all are pre-programmed and can be controlled remotely. Opting for these high-tech LED lights will surely enhance your pool light experience.

Pros and cons of LED light installation


  • Easy to install and replace: The level of difficulty installing the LED lighting is very low. They easily fit and can be replaced without much effort. Also, for underwater application you don’t have to drain out your pool water.
  • Low initial cost: Installing LED lights are a cost-effective choice. The cost typically ranges from $400-$900.
  • Even and cool brightness: LED lights create cool and pleasing aura without any glazing effect. Also, it spreads light evenly in the surroundings.
  • Safety: LED lights are operated with the same voltage as a car charger, so there is no risk of shock or any electrical incident.


  • Periodic replacement of bulb: ideally an LED bulb typically lasts for 7-15 years and also the only part that needs periodic replacement. The cost for replacement will range from $200-$400.
  • Dimmer: LED doesn’t work with standard dimmer. Highly rated dimmer must be required to dim the LED light bulb.
  • Difficult to choose: manufacturers provide different shades of same color under the same Kelvin rating. This makes it difficult to buy the desired color in LED.

Tips for installation

  • Purchase the LEDs according to the kind of light fitting install in your application area.
  • Use standard quality transformer in case of 12 V DC LED lights installation.
  • Power sources and wiring must be perfectly isolated, especially for underwater application to prevent shock.
  • Installation must be carried out by trained and certified professionals.
  • Always go for energy star rated product for optimum performance.

LED lights are significant energy savers and rate-cutters, opting to install LEDs will never let you down in terms of service and performance. At the end, LED installation is easy to carry out, requires less maintenance and will serve for a long lifespan.

Am I Entitled to Compensation?

It seems today that we live in a society in which people are quick to look for compensation after the event of an accident. In many ways our ability to offer no win no fee compensation fuels this compensation claim society. Some see it as a ticket to a way in which to obtain money quickly.

Yet with all of this compensation claims being dragged despite the media and made out to be a money hungry chase for a little extra cash without the work, the feel for compensation has left a sour taste in the mouths of many.

However, compensation is the only route for many left open to them after they have injured or injured under the hands of others. Legal action highlights that there is a problem and that the issue needs to be addressed. With out following legal action someone or a company could go on breaking the law and causing problems for other people. No win no fee legal actions enabled the victim to peruse financial retribution for injuries obtained as well as for pain and suffering. Not many people have the money to chase someone through the courts who has done wrong and the fear of mounting legal costs and the possible conclusion of debt is, for some, too much to think about.

Not all legal action for compensation will have to have result in injury. Many people obtain financial reward for a break down of contract that two parties have entered. A failure to deliver on a contract could result in one party having to pay out due to a lack of ability to deliver on the agreed terms.

Compensation for a flight that might be canceled is a good example of this and an interesting amount of circumstances depend on this. For example if your flight is canceled usually the air line will have to offer you an alternative flight no more that 12 hours after, or less than 12 hours before the original departure time. This is a rule that is set out to keep the peace with the passengers and resolve and conflict. The airlines might offer alternative solutions depending on your situation and the circumstances surrounding your situation.

Google Redirect Virus Fix – How to Get Rid of Google Virus

Infecting users via internet exposure and nooks and crannies found in unsecured browsers are the main causes of the redirect virus. So where does one inject the use of Google redirect virus fix? In order to properly employ its use first it is essential to understand what this threat is and what it does. The redirect malware lives up to its name, the infection causes a hijacking of any search or website visit a user plans to make. Instead of finding their site of choice the virus redirects them to fake websites containing ads and even corrupted pages.

The following fake errors are displayed by the vius

  • Internet explorer cannot open web page
  • filename.exe is not a valid win32 application
  • Setup files are corrupted Please obtain new copy of program

Being a browser hijacking utility it manages to infect browsers like IE and Firefox and then redirects internet users to the following malicious sites.

  • clearask.com
  • brittaniasearch.com
  • go.Google.com
  • web-analytics.Google.com

The redirect threat is capable of disabling activated firewalls and security software which can then lead to a remotely accessible system. This allows hackers to have access over personal information such as login names, passwords, financial records etc.

What are the symptoms to consider when one wants to implement a Google redirect virus fix?

· An unknown change of desktop background

· Changes homepage

· Browsers such as IE and Firefox slows down noticeably

· Corruption of registry files thus resulting to the dreaded “Blue Screen of Death”

· Contamination of messengers, freeware and email attachments are also sure signs.

How does Google redirect virus fix work?

1. Select Show Hidden Devices under Hardware Device Manager in your Windows Control Panel.

2. Search for “TDSSserv.sys” right click Disable. Do not select Uninstall otherwise the infection will reappear once the computer is restarted.

3. Reboot the pc.

4. Immediately update antivirus software and the Google redirect virus will cease to exist in your workstation.

It pays to be vigilant and alert when using the internet. Avoid malicious sites and constantly scan your system and update your security tool to avoid contaminations. It is also best not to rely on one antivirus software alone having another reliable application can help sift through the threats that the other was incapable of detecting.