The Aberfan Tragedy – The Village that Lost its Children

“All things bright and beautiful, all creatures great and small, all things wise and wonderful, the Lord God made them all” – Refrain from a hymn sang in British school assemblies during the 1960’s.

Life is precious and young life is most precious as it embodies the future and the chance to create a brighter and wiser world. So when a young life is taken we mourn the loss of potential as much as the devastating personal tragedy. Aberfan is the story of the tragic waste of young life on a monumental scale.

For most people born before 1960 in America they can remember what they were doing when they heard President Kennedy got shot. For the same generation living in Britain at the time, you were more likely to remember what you were doing when you heard about Aberfan.

On the morning of 21st October 1966, 144 people, 116 of them children, were killed when a tip of coal waste slid onto the village of Aberfan in South Wales. One of the first structures in the path of the slag slide was the village school. In just a few short minutes the future of this small welsh community was erased.

Aberfan tormented and shrouded Britain for many months after.

Parents found the haunting images in the newspapers and on TV difficult to confront. The inconsolable father who lost his whole family. The mother still waiting at the door for her child to return home from school… but who never will. Just when you thought the stories could get no more tragic… they did.

Surviving children in Aberfan were prized – they were hugged and protected.

English poet and essayist Laurie Lee visited Aberfan one year after the disaster and wrote a poignant essay describing the lingering devastation on the community he found. The fields of tiny graves visited daily by parents, the sound of silence on the playgrounds, and the scarcity of children’s garments drying on wash lines. They all told the story of a village that had lost its children.

Within a few hours of the disaster people came from miles around with their picks and shovels to dig out survivors… but it was futile. No survivors were found after 11:00am. Grown men openly wept as they uncovered the bodies of still children surrounded by black mud-laden books and toys.

The slag that engulfed the village was a by-product of the local mine. After many years the tips grew to be mountains… but without a solid foundation. One of the tips had a spring underneath it, and it was just a question of time before the saturation shifted its core and created the unstoppable landslide.

Coal mining disasters in south Wales were not unusual. It was part of the price for the work it brought to the region. And it was hard and dangerous work for the men of the village, and they lived daily with the knowledge an accident could shatter the fortunes of a family. But never for a minute did anybody think the price would include their children.

Aberfan has long slipped into the English language. One word that when spoken evokes instant sadness and remorse for a day in the 1960s that changed a village forever.

At the time the mines were owned and run by the National Coal Board, and after a few days of mourning the miners were required to return to work. Nationalization of the Coal industry was originally welcomed in the hope that the years of exploitation of the miners would be redressed. But even after the Aberfan disaster life in the South Wales valleys remained hard; collieries closed regularly, unemployment remained high, and nothing came in to fill the widening economic gap.

Today the colliery is closed and the site of the destroyed school is a memorial garden.

The Aberfan tragedy is part of a history that still casts its long shadow over the south Wales coalfield. We all carry our own “Aberfan” with us – some event that overwhelms us with grief and makes us question the injustice of life.

By October 1966 I had left school for good and was no longer required to sing hymns as part of my life. I’m not what most would call a religious person, but when I heard the news of Aberfan the hymn’s refrain I quoted at the beginning occupied my thoughts for days. To this day when I hear the hymn I think of Aberfan and a lost generation in south Wales.

I give my children plenty of hugs and protection – they are precious and I know why…

“All things bright and beautiful, all creatures great and small, all things wise and wonderful, the Lord God made them all.”

Sagging Breasts – What Bra You Need to Make Your Breasts Look Like a Twenty Year Old Again

Can a bra really help with Sagging breasts?

The short answer to this question is yes 100%, it can. The long answer is that question is as follows:

Bras are amazing pieces of lingerie that can really effect and transform your look instantly. There are many, many bra designs on the market and each one does something a bit different to enhance your cleavage in a different way or to compliment certain outer clothing garments.

Certain bras are ideal for women who suffer from sagging breasts. What you are looking for in a bra to help firm up sagging breasts, is a bra to lift the cleavage up, add volume to the individual breasts, this will result in the cleavage that is without sagging.

It is very important to note that a correct bra size is vital in delivering the best possible results. Ill fitted bras do not achieve the same look as a correctly fitted bra. Most departmental stores and lingerie shops offer free bra measurements, I would highly recommend that you take this opportunity regularly, as cup and bra size can change quite regularly, this is a natural part of aging on your breasts.

So which Bra is the best for sagging breasts then?

There are two ways of looking at this question, firstly lets see what actual women themselves say on the matter, in a recent survey of over 3,000 women the padded push up bra was voted the number one breast enhancement bra for sagging breasts. Secondly let us look at which bra will give you the biggest lift and added volume to utterly remove any signs of sagging in the cleavage, well there can be only one bra that does this exceedingly well, it is the padded push up bra.

As you can the bra that technically does the best for sagging breasts is also the same as the bra voted by women as being the best. Surely that speaks volumes for it. The padded push up bra can come in two different forms, both are identical and do the exact same job, the only difference between them is that the original has cotton padded inserts in the cups to give the extra volume to the breast, while the other contains liquid filled inserts in the cups (usually water, silicone or gel) these are commonly referred to as the water bra, gel bra or silicone bra. One just give a more natural movement and look to the cleavage than the other.

Custom Promo Product Spotlight: Any Size, Any Shape, Any Graphic

Successfully branding your business is one of the key ingredients to making it grow. When your customers become familiar with your brand, most of the time it isn’t long before loyalty follows. The challenging part is making your brand and logo memorable, and better yet, unforgettable. If you take a drive around your town, you’ll see excellent examples of how branding works. Even small children who catch a glimpse of the “Golden Arches” know that pulling into the McDonald’s parking lot means a Happy Meal is soon going to be on the way. In business, branding is everything. When you do it right, your business will thrive.

Various promo product companies have come up with a unique way for you to brand your business. The Sticky Screen Cleaner makes a great giveaway because it’s different than other traditional types of company offers. Whether you’re going to be at a tradeshow, or you want to have “a gimme” available for customers who visit the office, a sticky screen cleaner is an option.

Benefits of a Sticky Screen Cleaner

Rather than giving your customers a pen that will get pushed to the back of a kitchen drawer, or forgotten on the floor of a car, a microfiber screen cleaner is something they can keep on their cell phone, or other electronic devices, all the time. In fact, they’ll want to keep it on their phone or electronic device because it will give them a way to keep these items clean. By using a special gel backing, the sticky cleaners attach to the surface of any type of electronic. Microfiber is the type of cloth that’s used to clean the screen, which is the most efficient cleaning cloth on the market that’s also affordable. Using a negative electrostatic charge, it lifts dirt and grime off the surface of the screen, while other clothes simply push the dirt around. With your company logo on the sticky cleaner, your business name will be in front of your customers’ eyes many times every day.

Completely Customizable

Placing your order for your company’s sticky screen cleaners is really easy, with some companies offering check out and design capabilities directly on their site. Screen cleaners are completely customizable. You can choose your own colors, as well as the size and shape of your cleaning stickers. A tip is to use the graphic that you use for your business, and with color-matching technology, your brand will be successfully preserved on the handout.

Sticky screen cleaners have proven to be very popular with customers as well as with employees. Bulk ordering is available, so you can order large quantities at a given time for trade shows or presentations.

Cons:

– screen cleaners need to be replaced every 6-12 months for optimal effectiveness

– some people can’t figure out how to use them

– some cases won’t hold a phone sticker due to the materials they’re made from

The Best Use For Silver Plated Wine Goblets

So you have invested quite a tidy sum in purchasing some beautiful silver plated wine goblets. However if you are not careful and fail to take proper care of these after each time they are used then you may find yourself having to replace them in the future. It is important to understand that wine goblets that are silver plated when not cared for correctly can become damaged easily and begin to corrode.

So in order to make sure that the wine goblets you have purchased will last for many years to come we offer some tips below you may find useful.

Tip 1 – When it comes to washing your silver plated wine goblets make sure that you follow the instructions provided by the company that made them. Certainly one piece of advice that most will give you is that such items should be washed by hand and never in a dishwasher. The problem is that the heat and of course the abrasive ingredients within the detergent will damage the exterior and interior of the goblets very easily.

Tip 2 – Another thing that is important to remember when it comes to caring for silver plated goblets is that they don’t need to be polished on a regular basis. In fact you shouldn’t actually polish them more than is necessary. Just cleaning them on a regular basis with some warm water and a mild detergent then rinsing and drying them well will help to keep them looking great.

Tip 3 – It is important that you should wash your silver plated wine goblets once they have finished being used. This will of course help to remove any wine residue from within them. If allowed to remain not only can it tarnish the silver but also if left in contact with it for too long can cause the silver to corrode.

Tip 4 – If there are going to be times when you will need to polish your silver plated wine goblets then make sure that you use a good quality silver cream or polish. What you must never do is use any kind of metal polish as this will only cause further harm to the silver because it will contain abrasive materials in it. Then after polishing you must make sure that you rinse them in warm water before then drying them with a clean soft cotton tea towel.

It is important when polishing your silver plated wine goblets that if they are engraved that you use a soft brush to remove any polish residue from the crevices. What you mustn’t use of course is any kind of abrasive cloth or wire wool to do this as this will scratch the surface and over time will weaken the silver and cause it become tarnished and discoloured.

Tip 5 – Finally when you are cleaning and polishing your silver plated wine goblets if you are intending to wear gloves then make sure that these are made from cotton or plastic. The problem with conventional rubber gloves is that they contain ingredients which may cause the silver to corrode.

Instructions For Salton Yogurt Maker

Making yogurt with the Salton Yogurt Maker is fun, easy and worry-free. A few things you’ll need are milk, powdered milk for thickening, a thermometer and a yogurt starter. Be sure your yogurt maker is clean before starting. It will provide a stable temperature for incubating the yogurt. In this article you will find the best instructions for Salton Yogurt Maker.

1. Add ½ cup of dry milk powder to 1 qt of whole or skim milk.

The milk should be heated on the stove to 185-190°F, stirring frequently.

2. While you’re waiting for the milk to heat, plug in your yogurt maker so it can be warming up.

3. Let the milk cool to 110-115°F. I usually place the pot in a large bowl of ice water, stirring the milk until it’s cooled to the right temperature.

4. Pour about 1/3 of the milk into a separate clean container and add ½ cup of plain yogurt with active cultures or 1 pack of yogurt starter. Stir until mixed evenly.

5. Pour this starter mix into the remaining milk and stir.

6. Finally, pour the milk into your pre-heated yogurt maker.

7. You should allow the yogurt to incubate 6-12 hours. The longer it is heated, the more tart the taste.

8. When the batch is done, put the container in the frigerator and allow it to cool for several hours or overnight. The yogurt will thicken as it cools.

Now you have a wonderfully delicious batch of plain yogurt. If you like it flavored, add some maple syrup, honey, fruit or jam.

Homemade yogurt is a healthy alternative to store-bought brands. You have control over the ingredients and there’s no risk of eating unhealthy additives and sugars. The Salton Yogurt Maker is inexpensive and easy to use. You don’t have to part with large sums of your hard-earned money for a more expensive unit. Making homemade yogurt is exciting and I hope you find these instructions for Salton Yogurt Maker useful.

Sheepskin – In Hot Weather? Not on Yer Life!

Did you know, or realize, that sheepskin is sold more often in warm climates, than in cold ones? Sheepskin (meaning the skin of the sheep with the fleece still intact) has a track record of being great in cold weather because of its insulating ability, which keeps the air around the covered area warm. That’s great for the cold–but the question above wants to know about hot weather.

Look at these facts about sheepskin: if you WEAR sheepskin, it will be too warm if the temperature reaches near 80 degrees. When the weather is over 80 degrees, everything becomes HOT! The exception is going to be your exposed skin–interested?

Find out why: Sheepskin is an excellent insulator from heat build-up on seats where you will be sitting. The fleece of sheepskin has air spaces around the hair fibers. In winter, warm air is trapped and circulates, keeping you warm. In summer, the hair fibers allow the air to circulate so you stay cool. The fleece breathes and wicks away any moisture from the body, so sweat is essentially eliminated. The sheepskin fibers can hold about 30% moisture, keeping the moisture away from your skin. This is how it works in BOTH winter and summer.

You may have been remembering sun-drenched places that usually scald you when you sit down, that, when covered with sheepskin, aren’t going to have that effect. Be thinking of not only vinyl seats, but also leather seats. These might include your car seats, your infant car seat, your motorcycle seat, your bicycle seat, your saddle seat, your riding cart seat, your wheelchair seat, your golf cart seat, your airplane seat(?) (yep, that one, too) and though not a seat, it can be scalding, your steering wheel. (Listed are the obvious surfaces that are usually in the sun. You may come up with more ideas. Ask, and it shall be covered!)). Additional comfort can be had year-round on inside seats, too, such as office chairs, that comfy recliner, stools that medical professionals sit on, and my favorite, a sheepskin pelt thrown over the back of your sitting chair.

You may be thinking—well, I have a polyester (or even a different kind of fabric) cover over my seat, and it does just fine. It sort of keeps me cool–not really cool, but sort of. It makes me hot when I sit on it too long. It’s a bit warm when the sun hits it, but the skin on my legs remains intact. Not really a good comparison. Sheepskin doesn’t get ‘warm’ to the point of ‘sort of” burning your legs, back, or whatever part hits the sunny area, but truly protects your skin from any inkling of a burn, and totally from sweating. Sheepskin is known for maintaining a consistent temperature, in heat or in cold. The benefit of knowing you can crawl into your vehicle with no bad memories is worth a whole lot! Summer is hot and everything touched by the sun becomes hot! Sheepskin tricks the sun so there’s no more blistering yer posterior!

Methods For Hanging Wall Frames

One of the best ways to decorate the walls of your home or office space is by hanging wall frames, which come in a variety of sizes, shapes and materials. A popular frame size most commonly used for a portrait is a 16×20 picture frame and the 24×36 picture frame is a great size for framing a painting. The various materials from which frames are made include wood, metal, and plastic. Choosing a frame that best accentuates the picture or artwork you want to display is always important, just as making sure the frame is correctly hung on the wall. An improperly hung wall frame can be unsightly and spoil the whole idea of enhancing the rooms decor. By choosing the appropriate style and size of frame you can enhance the overall ambiance of your home in a simple way.

When hanging wall frames on drywall it is best to use a stud finder so that you can hang the frame safely and securely to the wall by hammering a finishing nail at a 45 degree angle into a wood stud. Whether you are hanging an 8×10 or a 24×36 picture frame, using a stud is always beneficial, but not the only method used for hanging wall frames. If the studs are not in the area where you would like to hang the frame then you should use a picture hook that supports the proper weight of your frame. There are many different types of picture hangers available and most work well for just about any size of frame from the very smallest to the largest. For the larger and heavier frames a good hook to use is one with three nails which can support items weighing from 50 to 100 pounds.

Another method for hanging wall frames is to use screws. Screws are not usually used on regular sheet rocked walls because picture hangers designed for drywall make smaller holes in the sheet rock and offer a more securely hung frame. Screws are usually used on walls made of concrete, stone or brick because these type of walls need the extra support and strength of the screws. With the help of a drill and mason drill bit, drill a hole into your wall and insert the screw. You may also want to consider using a screw anchor which will secure the screw tightly into the wall so that you can hang large and heavy hanging wall frames safely.

You can also use adhesives for hanging wall frames. They are simple and fast and do not require any holes to be made. Different types of adhesives are available in the market today. You can speak to the salesperson and he will show you the different varieties available. The greatest advantage of using adhesives is that there is no need to drill holes on your wall unlike other methods. You can simply choose the area and stick them wherever you want to hang your picture. However, you cannot hang heavy pictures using adhesives. Adhesives are typically used for hanging small frames such as a 5×7 frame. Some kinds of adhesives will hold wall frames up to 5 lbs.

In summary, when choosing the correct method for hanging wall frames there are several things to consider, such as the size and weight of your frame, the location on the wall, as well as the type of wall the frame will be hanging from. So, choose one of the above mentioned methods to hang your favorite pictures or paintings when decorating you home or office space. For a decorator designed look, select wall frames which exemplify styles, colors and materials that complement other items in your home/office decor.

Crossfit Workouts For Beginners

Here I’m gonna talk about some Crossfit workouts for beginners. Beginners at Crossfit may find all this talk about the “Workout Of The Day”, sumo deadlifts and kettlebell swings a little confusing if they haven’t heard of them before.

The Crossfit workouts are basically like this: Each day, a workout is prescribed by the trainer, called “Workout of the day”, or WOD. Every person at the Crossfit gym performs this same workout, the goal is usually to finish the workout in as short a time as possible or do as many reps or rounds as possible.

You don’t need to worry if you’re a beginner and think you can’t handle a Crossfit workout, because the workout is scalable to pretty much any fitness level. The trainer can help you find an easier variation of every exercise that is performed.

Most of the exercises are easy to perform, it’s the speed and lack of rest in between sets that is most challenging. If you’ve been in the gym a lot and are able to put up respective numbers, you may still find yourself drained in a matter of minutes of doing a Crossfit workout, that’s how I felt in the beginning.

If you’re still afraid of dipping right into a Crossfit workout, then here are some Crossfit workouts for beginners that you can practice with:

1. Squats. Any variation of squats will do. Doing them with no weight in the living room of your house will give you plenty of practice. Just make sure to watch your form. There are also plenty of variations that you will learn at Crossfit.

2. Shoulder Presses. If you have a barbell, or dumbbells, then you can practice doing shoulder presses in order to gain a bit of strength before trying Crossfit.

3. Crunches. Any form of crunches will do, since they all do pretty much the same thing. Planks are also excellent to strengthen your core.

4. Push ups. Regular push ups will do just fine, but if you want to get a bit of preparation for the speed of Crossfit workouts then you may want to try the clapping push ups. They are pretty much the same, except that you push much faster and then clap your hands once in between reps. Warning: you might fall on your face, that’s what happened to me once when I tried clapping my hands two times.

And finally, I would recommend trying to get into good cardiovascular shape, preferably doing high-intensity, anaerobic cardio exercises since these are a major part of Crossfit.

So these are a few Crossfit workouts for beginners that you can practice with, but like I said before I don’t think you need to worry about anything since the exercises are scalable so you can just show up at a Crossfit workout and start.

Six Week Body Makeover – Body Type C Meal Plan

The 6 Week Body Makeover meal plan is about customization. The more you customize your meal plan, the less bored you will be with your diet. The less bored you are with your diet, the more likely you will stick to the meal plan and lose weight. This article is directed towards people who have taken the body blue print questionnaire and have body type C.

Body Type C people are known to have more lean muscle mass than the rest of the body types. This is good as lean muscle mass increases your metabolism. When your metabolism has increased, it will burn calories (energy) at a faster rate, which will allow you to lose weight faster. The majority of “C” bodies are allowed to eat simple and complex carbohydrates (in moderation) and fruit. They should stick to chicken and fish for protein and stay away from red meats as red meat will make them “bulk up”. Here is a sample menu using the Infinite Menu Planner for a body type c daily meal.

Breakfast

4 oz. protein A

1 cup carb A

1/2 cup fruit A

Mid Morning Snack

4 oz. protein A

1/2 cup of carb A

Lunch

4 oz. protein A

1 cup carb A

1-2 cups veggie A

Mid Afternoon Snack

4 oz. protein A

1/2 cup carb A

Dinner

4 oz. protein A

1 cup carb A

1-2 cups veggie A

PM Snack

1/2 cup fruit A

If you use the infinite menu planner, you will have an unlimited amount of food choices. Losing weight doesn’t have to be about suffering and being on a boring meal plan. Learn to eat correctly and eat for a lifetime.

Technology, Multitasking, Stress and "Flow" – Critical Information You Need to Be at Your Best

“Your first and foremost job as a leader is to take charge of your own energy and then to help orchestrate the energy of those around you.”

Peter F. Drucker

“We must always change, renew, rejuvenate ourselves; otherwise, we harden.”

Goethe

Are you busier than you have ever been and enjoying it less and less? Do you end up too tired and frustrated at the end of the day to enjoy your evening or your “down” time? Is there any down time any more? What follows is what I think is the most critical piece of information that you can incorporate into your life in the coming year, both to buffer yourself from an exceptionally stressful environment, and, to excel in your performance and productivity.

Since 2001, when researcher Joshua Rubenstein, Ph.D. from the Federal Aviation Administration, and David Meyer, Ph.D. and Jeffrey Evans. Ph.D. both from the University of Michigan, published their groundbreaking research in the Journal of experimental Medicine, we have known that multitasking has its problems. In their work, they demonstrated that shifting mental gears costs time, especially when shifting to less familiar tasks.

To better understand executive control or the “Inner C.E.O”, the researchers had groups of young adult subjects switch between tasks of varying complexity (such as solving math problems), and measured the speed of their performance. In all cases, their measurements indicated that the subjects lost time on tasks, actually getting less done than if they were doing the tasks separately, and, it took them significantly longer to switch tasks when they were of greater complexity or unfamiliar.

Since this time, a sizable body of research has developed demonstrating similar losses in productivity and performance resulting from multitasking. Even more worrisome, some recent studies have shown that multitasking increases the levels of certain stress hormones, particularly cortisol and adrenaline, which on a long-term basis wears down our bodies’ systems, increasing our risk of many serious health problems and causing us to age prematurely.

In the last eight years since this initial research was published, challenges to our personal time and to our work life balance have increased exponentially. Along with ever more complex technology and its increasing availability have come increased expectations of our personal availability. These advancements in communications technology have allowed us to be available at any hour of the day on any day of the week, and the continuously expanding global nature of business has further fueled this demand. Most recently, the depressed economic conditions and related deep cutbacks in staffing have left us, almost everywhere, with fewer people and longer working hours.

The pressure to multitask is great. In many organizations it has become the norm, yet as mentioned above, the costs can be enormous. The illusion of speed and doing more with less time is very appealing, but it is usually only an illusion. The loss of quality of performance is high, but not nearly as high as the potentially devastating long-term costs to health due to increased stress and to personal and family relationships as a result of never being fully present.

What’s the cure for over reliance on multitasking and its subsequent consequences? I have recently heard the term “continuous partial attention” in describing what is more and more typical of our behaviors today and I find it to be distressingly accurate.

Several examples:

– At an important meeting at a local high school which would have a significant impact on the student’s future, the student noted afterward that the principal had spent the entire meeting (nearly and hour and a half), texting under the table.

– At a recent lunch meeting with another executive coach, while responding to his question, and reaching for a bite of my salad, I looked up to see him checking his e-mail on his new phone.

– A high-level job applicant told me recently that his interviewer (and prospective boss) had taken three phone calls and carried on three complete phone conversations about (apparently) non-urgent topics, while he sat there.

– Numerous clients have told me that they regularly answer business, e-mails, faxes, or phone or text messages from home and while on vacation.

– Nearly as many have complained about their spouse or partner “disappearing into e-mail” long into the evening and on weekends, effectively eliminating any “family time” or “couple time.”

What’s the most important piece of information I can give you as you start 2009? See the three strategies below:

1. Limit Multitasking. Set up clear boundaries for yourself for work and non-work activities time. Shut off electronic devices at defined times, and teach co-workers what is “an emergency” that would warrant them contacting you after-hours. If you are in a leadership role, model this for your staff and the organization, and communicate clearly what you are doing.

2. Be fully present. Whether it’s with a child, a spouse, a co-worker, or an employee, make a conscious choice to be present with them without interruptions from other technology and tasks. With colleagues and staff, this should be as often as they need your attention for work-related activities. For family and significant others, this needs to happen every day.

3. When you work, WORK! And, when you play, PLAY! In “The Power of Full Engagement” by Jim Loehr and Tony Schwartz they repeatedly make the point that the key to high performance is managing energy not time. They make the case that alternating periods of intense effort (or work) with periods of complete renewal (or relaxation and “play.”) is necessary for continuing health, high performance and productivity. In addition, many researchers have shown that one of the greatest predictors of happiness and one of the most potent protectors we have against the negative effects of stress, is being frequently in the state of “flow.” In other words, being totally absorbed in an activity, so much so that we lose track of time. This is impossible while multitasking. And, the deep recovery needed to do our best work is impossible if we never fully allow ourselves to fully relax and “play.”

I urge you to implement these three strategies in the coming year. Buck the trend toward “continuous partial attention” and watch the change in yourself, your organization and others around you.

Alternating Current Vs Direct Current – Which One Is Better?

What is the difference between alternating current (AC) and direct current (DC) and what are their individual pros and cons? These are questions that are fairly common being that virtually every electronic device in existence today is marked with one, the other, or both. Perhaps we know as much as what they stand for and their general uses, but not much more than that.

Direct current, as per its name, is an electric current that travels in one direction only, as opposed to an alternating current, which periodically reverses direction. Positive and negative poles in a magnetic or electric field create a condition in which electrons flow, called polarity. A direct current system has a fixed polarity where one pole is always positive and the other is always negative.

An alternating current on the other hand, reverses polarity continuously, at a rate determined by its frequency. Frequency is measured in hertz (Hz), which is equal to one cycle per second. The US uses 60 Hz while Europe uses 50 Hz. Japan for instance uses both – the eastern half uses 50 Hz while the western half uses 60 Hz. Most appliances are manufactured to accommodate both frequencies.

Back in the late 1880s when modern electricity began being produced on a commercial scale, a fierce rivalry between those who supported DC and those who supported AC ensued, known as the War of Currents. Thomas Edison was a staunch advocate of direct current while George Westinghouse, backed by Nikola Tesla, promoted alternating current.

Why AC won the War of Currents

It became clear at the time, that AC was far superior in terms of transmission of large amounts of electricity over large distances due in large part to its ability to easily step voltage up or down. As electricity travels up and down a conductor (wire), it loses energy in the form of heat due to resistance, expressed by Joule’s first law.

This means that energy is lost in proportion to its current. The obvious solution to this was to step up the voltage in order to lower the current – higher voltage equals the ability to lower the current for the same power. But then it became necessary to transform the voltage both before the long-distance lines and after, when distributing it to the consumer.

The problem with DC at the time was that there was no viable way to do this, while it was relatively simple to do so with AC. Today, technology has advanced to where long-distance DC is now not only viable, but in some ways superior to AC, in the form of high-voltage direct current (HVDC). However, there are still pros and cons to both AC and DC.

Pros to Alternating Current (AC)

  • Cheaper and easier to transform voltage.
  • Because of the alternating current, plugs can be inserted in either direction, as opposed to DC which must have one prong larger than the other to ensure proper circuit.

Pros to Direct Current (DC)

  • About 1.4 times more efficient due to not being a sine wave. As an AC generator produces voltage, it traces out a shape known as a sine wave, due to the continually alternating polarity. The crest of the wave is the peak voltage, but not the actual “usable” voltage. The usable voltage, or the voltage that comes out of the wall socket is equal to the RMS or root-mean-square of the peak voltage.

The RMS is the square root of the mean of the squares of the values. If you were to measure the height of the sine wave at an arbitrary number of random points, the square root of the average of the squares of the measured heights is your approximate RMS. The more points on the sine wave you measure the closer your answer will get to the actual RMS, which is the peak voltage times the reciprocal of the square-root of 2, approximately 0.7.

You can also divide the peak voltage by the square-root of 2, which roughly equals 1.4, and arrive at the same answer. Thus, if an AC and DC circuit both have equal voltage and wiring capacity, the DC circuit will output 1.4 times more usable voltage.

  • DC does not lose power to reactive losses. Reactive losses are those suffered by AC lines via heat, due to the natural capacitance of conducting material and the back and forth motion of alternating current.

To sum it up in light of today’s technology, AC systems are more economic for short distances, whereas the tables are now turned for long-distance transmission, with high-voltage direct current (HVDC) coming out on top. AC has the advantage of cheaper transformers while DC has the advantage of cheaper wire and insulators, making it the obvious winner for long distances.

ZARA Franchise: Invest in Your Future

When we look at the current market scenario where jobs are a scarce commodity as the economy is in a downward spiral, there is a big cause for concern. Therefore, it is of a paramount importance that we meticulously plan our future well in advance. For a middle class person like me, it’s a dream to own a business and ZARA Franchise gives you that rare opportunity. It is a business model which yields relatively high returns on a low to medium investment. ZARA is a very well-known and a very well respected brand all over the world. An opportunity to associate with the ZARA Franchise would give you an entrance into, and understanding of, the ever growing and extremely lucrative industry of apparel retail.

ZARA Franchise was founded by Amancio Ortega and Rosalía Mera in A Coruña, Galicia, Spain in 1975.It was however opened out of desperation and as a last resort, when a wholesaler cancelled a large order in which all of Ortega’s capital was invested. So he decided to sell the merchandise himself and opened the first ZARA store. The first store also featured low priced lookalikes of popular high end brands and it proved to be a huge success.

As the ZARA Franchise gained popularity, Ortega started the global expansion of the brand in 1980 and entered the US in 1989. ZARA is controlled by the parent company called Inditex group which also own the companies like Massimo Dutti, Bershka, Oysho, Pull and Bear, Stradivarius, and Uterqüe. As of 31st January 2012 ZARA has over 1631 outlets in around 82 countries and has over 42 stores in the US. With the contribution of US being marginal at the moment to the $2.5 Billion profits posted by Inditex, the growth opportunities of the ZARA Franchise in America are immense and with ZARA planning to open multiple outlets in all the major US cities the future of the brand is looking very bright.

The business model of the ZARA franchise is based on the motto “High Fashion at affordable price”. ZARA stores don both men’s and women’s clothing and subdivided into lower and upper garments, accessories, shoes and cosmetics. ZARA boasts low prices for smart in-fashion clothes. It takes two weeks for ZARA to develop and display the products in their stores. ZARA Franchise launches over 10,000 different designs in a year which is way higher that of the industry average. ZARA has over 200 designers who design new products keeping in mind the current trends. They also take into account the feedback received from various store managers from all over the world and therefor keep abreast with the consumer’s likes and dislikes and design their products accordingly. They produce in small batches per product with an extensive variety.

The other unique factor in ZARA Franchise business model is that, it’s a vertically integrated retailer unlike other apparel retailers. This gives them a tremendous control over all the aspects of production like supply chain, designing, manufacturing and distribution of it’s product. This makes the business more cost effective as they don’t have to outsource the different processes. ZARA also boasts “word of mouth marketing” as they believe that if the product is good it will sell. Window displays also play an important role in promoting the products.

ZARA offers their franchisees full access to corporate services, such as human resources, training, and logistics at no extra cost. They also allow the stores to return up to 10% of purchased merchandise, which is a higher level than many other franchises. The ZARA Franchise usually runs into profit by the end of the first year and if there is any debt on the start-up cost, it would be recovered by the end of the third year. All you have to do is contact the corporate office and depending on the city you live in, you can apply for the ZARA Franchise.

A Quick Cure For Putting Woes

In resent years I have discovered a new technique that has taken 6 strokes off of my golf score. The amazing thing is that it’s all about putting. I use to average 38 puts per round, now I average 32.

For years I have tried to improve my putting. I have taken lessons, bought the latest equipment, and experimented with different techniques. All most all of these helped to some degree, but then I would slip back to my 38 putt rounds.

Have you ever had the experience of trying out a new putter in the store that really seamed to work? Then when you got to the course it didn’t perform any better then your old one. There is a reason for this phenomenon. You’ve heard the expression “this putter fits my eye”. When you look down at the new putter blade for some reason the line to the hole looks clearer. This increases your confidence and you put a better stroke on the ball. Unfortunately after a period of time this goes away. You could continue to go out and buy new putters, but that will get expensive.

My discovery is a new putting stroke. In fact it’s three new putting strokes. That’s right I show up at the golf course with three putting strokes. I have no idea which one I’m going to use that day until I go to the practice green. I’m looking for that stroke that fits my eye. As you have seen by watching the pro’s there are many ways and styles that can be effective. Here are my putting strokes.

#1 TRADITIONAL

This stroke requires a relaxed fluid motion. Square up your body, use the rotation of your shoulders to stroke through the ball and down the line. Grip should be loose. It is imperative to keep you head down and still. Another good checkpoint on this stroke is to have your head directly over the ball.

#2 CLOSED FACE

I stumbled on this and man dose it work. The theory here is to address the ball and line up your putt. Now, close the face of your putter blade so its aiming 6 to 8 inches left of target. (This is a little firmer grip then normal). Now rotate your upper body to the right 9 (don’t move your feet) until the blade is back in line with the target. This will give you a whole new look at the line.

#3 TOP SPIN

I use this stroke on rough or bumpy greens a lot. Bend your knees and get lower to the ground. Take a short back swing and accelerate through the ball with an upward stroke. This will put over spin on the ball and it will keep a truer track.

Traditional style is the style that most teaching pro’s like. Its greatest asset is that it makes you use your large muscles (your shoulders). When your nerves are amped up your small muscles will fail you. It’s imperative in all putting strokes to keep your wrists and hands still through the stroke. The two other key essentials in any putting stroke are; your back swing must stay on line with the target and you must accelerate through the ball.

Closed Face style is my favorite. It has two assets, the first one is a totally different view of the line, and the second is it’s easier to keep your back swing on the line. This is a great cure for the yips.

Top Spin style is a must for rough or sanded greens. I live in the northwest and as you might imagine, our greens get a lot of rain in the winter. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve used this stroke on fast greens, it just felt right for the day.

You may wonder if one stroke works better for short putts and one for long putts. My answer is no, but I have changed to another stroke in the middle of a round. You see its all about confidence. When I look down that line, I need to believe that putt will track to the hole.

Let’s talk about the yips. I define them as an inability of your body to perform a task that your mind wants. We have all had the experience of standing over a 5 foot putt and our nerves blowing it for us. This becomes more apparent as we age. Our best defense against this disabling affliction is confidence. You can’t think your way through a putting stroke. You can’t tell yourself how many inches to take your putter back and how hard to hit it, to make a 6 foot putt. It’s all about feel and confidence.

How can you develop confidence? Have you ever gone to the driving range and counted the number of golfers hitting their driver? They want to see how far they can hit it. When I go to the range I use this drill. I pick a green or flag at about 115 yards out. I must hit 10 balls in a row on that green. If I hit 9 and then miss, I must start over. Only after I hit 10 in a row can I graduate to my next club. You can use this same drill in putting. Start out with 4 balls at 4 feet and then graduate to 5 feet. This will build consistency and confidence in your putting game.

Analyze your golf game. It is imperative that you know where you are now before you can improve. When you ask the guys in my group for their score on a hole, you will probably hear an answer like 42 or 31. The first number represents the score for the hole and the second number is their putts for that hole. Keep your cards and take an average of the last ten rounds to establish average number of putts per round.

What Are Angels?

The Hebrew term for angels is malakh (plural form –malakhim) which refers to messenger. These heavenly creatures are described as servants or messengers who do work for God. Some people think that these beings are mediators between God and mankind. Children see angels as a beautiful woman, a handsome young man or another child or children who sing in a choir singing to the Lord. The angels are the enemies of Satan and his group of devils.

Cherubims or seraphims are sentinels or guards for God. They are spirits or souls who have never had a physical body. They exist to carry tasks from God and they have varied forms. A cherub can either be female or male but this is actually on as perceived by the human mind. This shows that angels assist to have a bond between the Creator and mankind.

Roman Catholics see angels in different ways. For Muslims and other Christian denominations these heavenly beings are good spirits that go against devils. The Koran mentions some angels that are also found in the Holy Bible.

Angels wear white robes. Some have wings and some do not. They have halos over their heads and they are surrounded by white illumination. The Holy Bible explains that angels are not glorified beings. They are not able to product offsprings or have partners in life like human beings. The Old Testament says that once a person dies and goes to heaven, a group of angels will escort the soul to the throne of God. Dr. Paul Eymann from the ChristianAnswers.Net describes angels as:

“Angels are essentially “ministering spirits,” (Hebrews 1:14) and do not have physical bodies like humans. Jesus declared that “a spirit hath not flesh and bones, as ye see me have” (Luke 24:37-39). The Bible does, however, make it clear that angels can only be in one place at a time. They must have some localized presence.”

There are many stories about angels that can be found in the internet. Angelology is the study of angels and is a very interesting subject. As you can see, the study of angels can be pretty complicated. A lot of work has been put into it through the years and it has become part of modern mythology. Angels are not just winged fellows with harps and all of this is proves that. Get to know more about angels by searching online or subscribing to a magazine about angels!

Material Trends in Exhibition Stand Design

The exhibition stand is changing. In the past, exhibitors used heavy materials to set up an exhibition booth that was cumbersome to build and to move. Today, the focus on the use of lightweight materials, and in particular fabric, means that the exhibition stand is lightweight and less expensive.

Current trends in the exhibition stand design worldwide include an increased use of various materials such as fabric, an emphasis on lighting, creating a “box” design, building organic shapes, and using bold colours.

Materials

Fabric is the material most used in exhibit stands in current trends. Because fabric is light weight, and can be moulded to create eye catching shapes, it is the material of choice for the modern exhibitor. Fabric can be used as an accent or to construct an entire booth. The latest trend with fabric is the use of translucent fabric to display full wall graphics. Fabric can define the space as the part of the branding for the exhibition stand, while maintaining the open, airy feeling of space, so that attendees do not feel enclosed within the exhibit.

Wood is the next most common material to use, with metal the preferred finish for some industries, particularly health care, kitchen, bath, and the retail industries. Metal is difficult to damage and is therefore cost effective for use in long-term exhibits or exhibition stands that will be transported across the country to show in the various capital cities.

Lighting

Ten years ago, many exhibitors simply used the available lighting within the exhibition centre. Now, it is virtually impossible to spot an exhibition stand that does not include separate lighting to accentuate or highlight products. Exhibition lighting has become an integral part of excellent stand design.

From halogens to gobos, from wash lights to spot lights, you can use lights in your exhibition stand design to create a mood, highlight particular products, and to create special effects that attract attention to your exhibition. Use lights to set your booth apart from the competition.

Box Design

Exhibitor Magazine has annual design awards and at least 75 per cent of the winners this year have used a “box design”. Although the box can be rectangular, oval, round, or whatever shape you like, the box itself is an exhibit that contains and delineates the space itself. Rather than use a traditional exhibition booth, and simply build the exhibit into the space remaining from the walls of the booth, the box design allows an exhibit to use the entire space allocated to the stand and to define the space without the use of booth walls. If your branding uses an oval shape, create an oval shaped exhibition stand within the space allocated, instead of using the traditional rectangle booth.

Shapes

The use of new shapes is a trend that stems from the use of computer generated designs in exhibition stands. Curves, tombstone shapes, wave shapes, and other complex shapes are being used to add interest and movement to exhibition stands.

Graphics are also using shapes as part of the design. Graphics are now focusing on a single message and are becoming a large part of the exhibition stand. The latest worldwide trend in graphics is to take advantage of the new printing processes and turn walls into a full graphic that attracts attention. Designers are using shapes, such as ovals, to show the difference between the graphic and the wall.

Colours

Colours are definitely one of the trends that continually changes within the exhibition industry. One year aqua is all the rage and the next magenta red is the accent colour of choice. Using trendy colours can lead to additional expense when you have to change the colour scheme to meet the latest trend, or your stand will be seen as out of date. The latest colour trend is to mix conservative colours, such as black, gray, and tan, with vibrant colour accents. However, some exhibitors have experienced success by using aggressive colours for the entire stand, such as yellow, green, or orange. Using colour in lighting is also a popular trend.

The main trends in exhibition stand design are the use of fabric, lights, shapes, and colours to define the space in new and different ways that attract attention. If you want to have a trendy exhibition stand, pay attention to the design of the shape of your exhibition stand, and think outside the traditional “booth” approach.