How Do Combine Harvesters Work?

One of the most crucial pieces of farm machinery invented in the past century, the combine harvester turns an incredibly labour intensive process into a one-person job. Harvesting crops without the machine is inefficient and costly. This machine allows practically any farmer with the space to grow oats, rye, barley and wheat.

To really understand how the combine harvester works, we need to go back a bit and take a look at its history.

Early combine harvesters

Initially invented in America by Hiram Moore, they were quickly adopted by American farmers. By 1860 these early horse and mule drawn machines were in use in farms all over America. An Australian by the name of Hugh Victor McKay developed the first of many commercial combine harvesters in 1885: the Sunshine Harvester.

These early combine harvesters follow the same principle of the engine-driven, self-propelled ones that we use today; the header cuts the crops and sweeps them into whatever storage area it is built with. The combine harvesters of the 19th century would eventually be made with a cutting width of several metres, meaning it would take less time to finish harvesting an entire field.

Self propelled harvesters

The Sunshine Harvester ushered in a new era as the combine made its way around the world. Holt Manufacturing of California also created a self-propelled harvester in 1911, and later, in 1923, the Gleaner Manufacturing Company patented a self-propelled harvester that made use of a number of grain handling improvements like the auger to replace canvas drapers, a rasp bar threshing cylinder and a cylinder that helped thresh closer to the crop. The Gleaner Manufacturing Company would go on to become part of AGCO close to seventy years later, a leading name globally in today’s agricultural equipment industry.

Further improvements

A European harvester by the name of ‘Herkules’ was developed in the 50s by manufacturer CLAAS with the ability to harvest up to 5 tons of wheat every day.

Self-cleaning rotary screens, an improvement that was made in the 1960s, put an end to a common issue where engines would overheat because of grains clogging the radiators. The rotary design was another huge improvement that allows the grain to be stripped from the stalk and passed along a rotor.

Today combine harvesters work by sending crop up a feeder throat via a flight elevator, reaching a threshing mechanism where grain and straw are separated. Most machines give you the ability to alter everything about the process manually to get the absolute best yield of crop.

Over a century of innovation and technological advancement has created the machine commonly used by farmers all over the world today. It is these features that make the combine harvester one of the most important pieces of machinery you’ll find on any farm.

Technical Writing – Definition of Boilerplate

From a tech writer’s POV, boilerplate is any text that can be reused (sometimes called re-purposed) in a number of different documents without much change from the original. It’s copy a client often supplies that includes information about an organization’s history, facilities, or capabilities. Since these things don’t change, or change very little, there’s no point reinventing the information every time it’s needed. All the writer has to do is update and refresh the boilerplate and put it in where it’s needed.

From a programmer’s POV, boilerplate is sections of code that have to be included in multiple places in a program with little or no change. It’s also used to refer to languages that are verbose; when a programmer has to write a lot of code to do a small job.

From a legal POV, boilerplate is a standard provision in a contract. It’s the reason that when you buy a house, the contract is twenty pages long, and you have to sign here, here, here, initial here, and sign here.

For the word nuts (like me) here’s a little history. The term goes back about a hundred years when things ran on steam power. Because of the high pressure inside a steam boiler, the steel had to be tough and thick. Anything big and strong was called boilerplate. About the same time, when printing was done with steel plates that could be used over and over, text that was going to be widely reproduced was called boilerplate. Newspapers, especially, used boilerplate so papers could be printed all over the country by just shipping the printing plates to each location.

Parboiled Rice – Advantages & Disadvantages

Rice has one of the biggest consumption levels all across the world. It’s available in several varieties. One such variety is the Parboiled Rice which is amber in color. It has different properties than that of normal white rice because both go through different filtration processes. Parboiling is a common practice in many parts of Asia & Europe. It’s a 3-step process: Soaking, Steaming & Drying after which the rice is taken into mills for hulling. We get hulled parboiled rice once it gets out of the mills.

Change after Parboil

Rice goes through some major changes after the parboil process. Most of the changes regard to its nutritional levels and quality. As a result of the change, some people dislike it but most like it.

Some major changes are:

Milling – Milling becomes easier as the hull becomes easy to remove. However, bran removal becomes a more difficult task.

Starch Gelatinization – The starch present gelatinizes which makes the grain hard, translucent and tough. Breakage during milling decreases as total yields increase compared to white rice.

Texture & Taste – The whole process affects the coarseness of the grain. It becomes hard and at the same time smooth. This directly influences the taste. Some people find ultimate satisfaction in the taste while for some it’s not so heavenly.

Inactivation of Enzymes – The remaining enzymes inactivate during the process which halts fungus growth and biological processes.

Advantages of Parboiled Rice

There are great overall advantages of parboiling.

Due to hardening of the grain, insects find it more difficult to infect (bite).

Total yield after milling increases by 3-4% when compared to regular rice as the breakage reduces.

It’s rich in minerals as it contains 3% of calcium, potassium, zinc, iron and magnesium which if consumed on a daily basis is very beneficial for the body.

It loses less starch during cooking. Once cooked, it stands for long times and stays fluffy.

High blood sugar levels of body are well-managed because of sufficient carbohydrate presence.

Being rich in vitamin B & niacin, it helps in producing neurotransmitters and helps our body metabolize food into energy.

This rice is heaven for diabetics as it has low glycemic index meaning the food gets converted to sugar very slowly thereby keeping the sugar levels low.

Cooking quality differs from normal rice as it’s non-glutinous & non-sticky.

Some Disadvantages

It almost doubles the total processing cost as bran removal is more difficult which costs more.

Longer cooking times mean more usage of fuel.

It develops a darker color compared to raw rice.

It has more chances of developing rancidity because of the loss of natural antioxidants during parboiling.

Due to long soaking in traditional process, some mycotoxins may develop and cause health hazards.

The whole process of parboiling needs extra investment.

If you look at all the facts, advantages & disadvantages, this variant seems like a good option as far as healthiness remains a concern. It’s rich in minerals, carbohydrates, & Vitamins which is excellent for the body. Traditional processes do have some cons but that’s what you have to consider before buying it.

PVC and HDPE – Similar Yet Different

The underground piping market in North America has seen tremendous growth over the last 30 years in the use of thermoplastic materials. Benefits such as corrosion resistance, improved hydraulics, and reduced installation costs have been paying large dividends for owners of watermain, sanitary and storm sewer systems.

The most widely used and accepted of this group of nonmetallic polymers is Polyvinyl Chloride, also known as ‘PVC’ or ‘vinyl’. Vinyl has a successful track-record in the application of underground pipe dating back to the rebuilding of post-WWI Germany. It has long been considered to be one of the most durable polymers for both underground and above-ground piping systems.

Another thermoplastic used in the underground pipe market is High-Density Polyethylene (HDPE). This material has been used for well pipe, gas piping and drainage tubing before recent entry into the watermain and sewage forcemain markets.

HDPE and PVC are remarkably similar in their nature of responses to such stress loadings as internal pressure and soil loads. Although responses are similar, they are not identical. In fact the magnitudes of their respective strengths are dramatically different.

This report is intended to investigate some of the similarities and differences between the design of PVC and HDPE in terms of the application of underground pressure piping.


The long-term pressure rating of a thermoplastic pipe is defined as the maximum internal pressure at which the pipe can operate continuously. The ratings of both PVC and HDPE are found using the ISO Equation for thermoplastics:

Equation (1) P = 2S / (DR-1)

where P = pressure rating of the pipe

S = design stress of pipe material

DR = dimension ratio of the pipe, (OD/t)

The main difference between PVC and HDPE pressure capacity lies in the value of the design stress. For PVC 1120 compounds, the design stress is 2000 psi while that of HDPE 3408 is only 800 psi. These design stresses were both derived in exactly the same fashion. A factor of safety of 2.0 was applied to the long-term hydrostatic strength (i.e. the Hydrostatic Design Basis – HDB) of each material. The HDB for PVC 1120 is 4000 psi while that of HDPE 3408 is 1600 psi.

The following examples illustrate the use of the ISO Equation to determine pressure ratings.

Example 1 – Find pressure ratings of DR21 pipe for both (a) PVC, and (b) HDPE.

Solution – use equation (1)

P = 2S / (DR-1)

(a) for PVC, S = 2000 psi

Substituting, P = (2) x (2000 psi) / (21 – 1)

= 200 psi

(b) for HDPE, S = 800 psi

Substituting, P = (2) x (800 psi) / (21 – 1)

= 80 psi

Example 2 – (a) Find the pressure rating of PVC DR41 and then (b) find the equivalent DR of HDPE to yield the same rating.

Solution – use equation (1)

(a) P = 2S / (DR-1)

= (2 x 2000 psi) / (41-1)

= 100 psi

(b) rearranging equation (1),

DR = (2S / P) + 1

= [(2 x 800 psi) / 100 psi] + 1

= 17

Therefore, to obtain a 100 psi pressure pipe, the 2 options would be PVC – DR41 or HDPE – DR17.

The following points can be concluded from the above information:

(a) The ratio of PVC to HDPE in terms of tensile strength is equal to the ratio of the design stresses, i.e. 2000:800 which is 2.5:1, and

(b) The wall thickness of HDPE must be 2.5 times thicker than that of PVC to obtain pipe with equal pressure ratings.

Below is a summary of long-term pressure ratings for both PVC and HDPE derived using the ISO Equation and a S.F. of 2.0.

Table 1 – Pressure Ratings


DR Rating (psi) DR Rating (psi)

51 80 21 80

41 100 17 100

32.5 125 13.5 128

25 165 11 160

21 200 9 200

18 235 7.3 254

14 305 6.3 300

Although CSA B137.3, AWWA C905 and ASTM D2241 all use a S.F. = 2.0, there is one PVC standard that uses a S.F. = 2.5, namely AWWA C900-97 (note – this standard will soon be changing to be similar to AWWA C905). As well in this C900 standard, the pipe is further de-rated by a 2 ft/s surge. (Designers should not confuse the ‘Pressure Class’ terminology of C900 with the long-term ratings of HDPE.) If one wishes to select a HDPE pipe that is equivalent to a particular PVC Pressure Class, the identical design criteria should be used to determine a Pressure Class of HDPE. In other words, the design stress must be derived using S.F. = 2.5, and the pipe must be de-rated with the surge of a 2 ft/s velocity. To determine equivalent pressure classes of HDPE and PVC, refer to Table 3 presented later in the text and use Equation (2) shown below.

Equation (2) P.C.= P’- 2 Ps

Where P.C. = pressure class of pipe

P’ = pressure rating of pipe using S.F. = 2.5

Ps = surge pressure for 1 fps velocity change

Note: Ps for PVC and HDPE are given in Table 3.

Example 3 – (a) Find the pressure class of DR25 PVC and (b) find the DR of HDPE to give the same pressure class.

Solution – First solve for new design stresses.

PVC: S = HDB / S.F.

= 4000 psi / (2.5)

= 1600 psi

HDPE: S = HDB / S.F.

= 1600 psi / (2.5)

= 640 psi

Now use equation (2) and the values of Table 3 to solve.

(a) PVC DR25

P.C. = [2S / (DR-1)] – 2 Ps

= [(2)(1600 psi) / (25-1)] – (2)(14.7 psi)

= 100 psi

(b) HDPE – trial and error using equation (2)

try DR11,

P.C. = (2) (640 psi) / (11-1) – (2)(13.4 psi)

= 100 psi

Below is a table of minimum DR’s of HDPE to be equivalent to the pressure classes of PVC as defined in AWWA C900.

Table 2 – Pressure Class DR’s

Pressure Class (psi) PVC-DR HDPE-DR

100 25 11

150 18 7.3

200 14 6.3


Another tremendous benefit of using thermoplastic piping is that surges created are lower than those associated with more rigid materials such as metallic or concrete cylinder pipe. The inherent flexible nature of thermoplastics allows transient shock waves to be easily dampened and absorbed. This minimizes surge effects on the entire system.

Positive pressure surges in pipelines can be approximated by using the following two equations.

Equation (3) a = 4660 / [1 + (k/E)(DR-2)]^0.5


a = wavespeed of surge wave (fps)

k = fluid bulk modulus (= 300 000 psi for water)

E = modulus of elasticity of pipeline material (psi)

DR = dimension ratio (= OD/t)

Equation (4) Ps = aV / (2.31) g


Ps = pressure surge (psi)

a = wavespeed (fps)

V = velocity (fps)

g = acceleration due to gravity

= 32.2 ft/s^2

The Modulus of Elasticity of PVC 1120 at 73.4°F is 400 000 psi, while that for HDPE 3408 is 115 000 psi. The table below summarizes the surge pressures expected for every 1 ft/s instantaneous velocity change in both PVC and HDPE. For velocities other than 1 ft/s, the surge will be equal to the values in the table multiplied by the actual velocity in ft/s (i.e. if V = 3 ft/s, surge = 3 times the table value for the given material and DR).

Table 3 – One Ft/s Surges


(E=400 000 psi) (E=115 000 psi)

DR Ps (psi) DR Ps (psi)

51 10.8 21 8.8

41 11.4 17 9.9

32.5 12.8 13.5 11.3

25 14.7 11 12.7

21 16.0 9 14.3

18 17.4 7.3 16.3

14 19.8 6.3 17.9

Although HDPE is by nature a more flexible material than is PVC, the surges created in pipe of equivalent pressure ratings are very similar. For example, for a 100 psi pipeline, the surge created by a 1 ft/s velocity change would be 11.4 psi for DR41 PVC and 9.9 psi for DR17 HDPE.

Overall, the surges for both materials are well below the values of metallic pipe which typically generate surges of 50+ psi for every 1 ft/s instantaneous velocity change. Continuous pressure surges should not be ignored in any pressure pipeline design, regardless of material.


The ability of a soil surrounding a flexible pipe to strengthen the pipe is numerically known as the Soil Stiffness (E’). E’ numbers are derived empirically to represent the quality of soil and degree of compaction as a ‘psi’ value. E’ values are described in detail in standards ASTM D 2321 or CSA B182.11. A brief summary is presented below.

Table 4 – Soil Stiffness

Soil Stiffness E’ (psi) Material Compaction (S.P.D.)

3000 Manuf. Angular 90%

2000 Clean Sand/Gravel 90%

1000 Sand/Gravel/Fines 90%

500 Sand/Gravel/Fines 85%

Buckling may occur in any pipe if the total load in the inward direction (i.e. static soil + traffic + vacuum) exceeds the critical buckling resistance of the pipe. A thermoplastic pipe must be designed to have sufficient strength to resist inward structural collapse, or buckling. Tremendous strength can be added to any pipe’s resistance by having solid lateral soil support in the Haunch Zone of a buried pipe trench, i.e. a high soil stiffness.

Below is a summary of the critical buckling strengths of various DR’s of PVC and HDPE for (a) Pcr, an unsupported condition (i.e. subaqueous or above-ground) and (b) Pb, a buried trench condition with a specified soil stiffness, E’ (for this example, = 500 psi).

Table 5 – Buckling Strengths

PVC DR Pcr (psi) Pb (psi)

14 425.8 530.6

18 190.2 354.6

21 117.0 278.1

25 67.4 211.1

32.5 29.8 140.4

41 14.6 98.3

51 7.3 69.5

HDPE DR Pcr (psi) Pb (psi)

6.3 266.2 419.6

7.3 171.2 336.5

9 91.4 245.8

11 50.0 181.8

13.5 27.0 133.6

17 17.6 107.9

21 7.2 69.0

26 3.8 50.1

32.5 2.0 36.4

To investigate a typical situation, a pressure pipeline is buried 10 feet in soil with a density of 120 lb/ft^3 and subjected to a momentary negative 10 psi vacuum due to a transient shockwave. A total negative load of (-)18.3 psi would be created. As can be seen from the above table, this negative pressure would exceed some of the Pcr values of PVC (DR41 and 51) as well as HDPE (DR17, 21, 26 and 32.5). By having a minimum soil stiffness of 500 psi, the values of Pb for all DR’s of both materials will easily exceed the total negative load and buckling will not occur.

If any of these pipes happened to have significant voids in their backfill, it is conceivable that buckling failure could occur. It is imperative that lower pressure rated thermoplastic pipe be installed so as to have a minimum soil stiffness, E’, of 500 psi. Voids in the haunch support zone can be prevented by using proper bedding material and light compaction. This point is especially relevant if ever considering assembling thermoplastic pipe above the trench and rolling it in before backfilling. Buckling is a situation far less likely to occur if the pipe is installed using a conventional open trench with moderate compaction beside the pipe as the line installation progresses.


To do a thorough comparison of PVC and HDPE, many other factors would have to be considered such as: material cost, installation cost, connection methods, and manufacturing test requirements. The designer should also ensure that each material has a successful track record for the application being considered.

This report has offered a snapshot comparison of the 2 thermoplastic materials used most often for pressure pipe in North America – PVC and HDPE. The capacity of each material was illustrated in terms of their pressure ratings, surge performance and buckling resistance to allow designer an equal comparison between PVC and HDPE.

PS3 HDMI Problems – How You Can Fix and Repair PlayStation 3 HDMI Troubles

Are you having PS3 and HDMI problems? Most errors can be fixed by yourself at home when you know how. Get your PS3 fixed and working again today.

Connecting your PS3 to an HDMI interface can result in a blank or black screen, distorted or fuzzy images, distorted video output or it cuts out. No sound or other audio problems.

Have you noticed that sometimes when technology advances there seems to be more things to go wrong with it?

PS3 HDMI Video Problems.

You connect your HDMI cable, and switch on the PS3, you get a signal, but it’s a black screen. You cannot get video output no matter what you do.

Video output is distorted, producing weird effects on the screen, or the colors are not right or messed up in some odd way.

You have tried various different HDMI cables and each time when you try to switch the video over you get a blank screen, with occasional flashes of static. The flashes go on even after about 30 seconds, when the output switches back to component.

Sometimes when gaming the picture goes blank then comes back again, it goes on and off.

No Sound from PS3 HDMI

Sound problems – the visuals are good and most sound is there but you can’t hear people’s voices properly, or no sound at all.

If you want to attempt some HDMI troubleshooting you could.

1. Change the HDMI cables.

2. Reset the power cycle by switching off the TV and PS3, unplugging them from the power source and plugging them it in again.

3. In cases where you are using HDMI-DVI or an HDMI hub or some other piece of equipment in the connection series, try to rule out that piece of equipment first by temporarily removing it.

4. Try other HDMI ports on the TV.

5. Adjust the display settings.

If you get no result then send your PS3 away for repair and you will probably have to.

1. Wait up to 6 weeks to get it back.

2. Pay $150 for what is the manufacturers’ problem.

3. Lose your hard drive data.

4. Worry about whether the repair is permanent or Not. If it happens again in 3 months time then it could be another $150.

Whatever model of PS3 you have, all problems and all models can be repaired using the PS3 repair guide. The methods used are entirely safe and are the exact methods used by the producer of the PS3. No need for fancy or costly equipment. Your machine can be fixed today using common household items.

There really is a better way to end your PS3 HDMI problems and get back to playing your favourite games again today.

The Importance of Preparation Before Making That Speech

It is very important to prepare one’s speech before getting making the actual presentation. Here are some tips in effective public speaking with regards to speech preparation.

Public speaking can be defined as a process of interacting with a crowd in an organized way. From this definition, it can be inferred that a speech should be prepared as much as possible in order to achieve an effective and organized speaking session. Through sufficient preparation, a positive outcome can be reached.

In order to be effective in public speaking, you must be prepared to combat anxiety so as to overcome it. Even professional public speakers encounter anxiety or fear. Their only difference is that they know how to overcome this undesirable feeling. Ample speech preparation helps to negate such nervousness.

Before making a speech, you should first research thoroughly on the information regarding your topic. Try to find information that can be easily relatable to your audience. You just need to be creative enough to fit your gathered information into a concise fashion and share them coherently with your audience. Also, the accuracy of your content is equally important as well. Out-of-date facts or figures would only damage your credibility.

In addition, your speech content will be useless if you cannot site any examples to further explain your key points. It is often said that if one is unable to explain something simply, one does not know it well enough. Remember to pare down your content into chewable bits for your audience. Do note that there are some audiences who may have difficulty in understanding a complex topic if examples or analogies are not presented. That’s why ‘check-back’ questions can be asked from time to time to gauge the receptiveness level of your audience.

The success of any speech is not only measured by its content but also on its delivery. It is absolutely crucial that preparation must be done in the area of delivery and style. No audience wants to listen to a boring speaker who behaves more like a ‘public reader’. Effective public speaking involves deciding on the approach on how to bring across your points to your audience. A funny, joke-laden presentation can work for some crowds but it may be a tad too casual or informal for others.

One of the best tips in public speaking isto perform dry runs in front of a mirror. By doing this, you will be able to observe any undesirable gestures that you may exhibit especially when anxiety gets the better of you. Be aware of these and make the necessary corrections so that no matter how you feel inside, the outer facade remains seemingly composed. A well-prepared speech helps a speaker cover all his bases. Effective public speaking can be achieved simply with proper preparation.

How to Talk Dirty Over Text And Start a Sexy Conversation

You must know a thing or two on how to talk dirty over text if you are going initiate a sexy conversation and keep it going long enough to turn your man on. While starting a steamy text exchange may not be hard, keeping it going might be challenging. It all depends on how well you start it and the opening lines you use.

Your man goes by what you tell him, so if you start a conversation on the wrong footing; chances are it will not go far. This means you will not achieve what you wanted with the text in the first place. Here is a simple to follow guide on dirty texting over the phone and how to initiate and maintain an intimate conversation.

Start by creating curiosity… When talking dirty, you don’t have to give away everything in the first line. Try really hard to remain vague and mysterious. These two factors are important in making your guy curious and in essence maintain a long dirty talking session. In other words, creating curiosity is the surest way of getting a man to pay attention to what you have to say. Once he has all his attention directed to you, maintaining the conversation becomes easy.

Create the sexual perspective of the conversation… You may have got his attention all right, but you need to quickly establish the sexual aspect of the conversation you are about to have. You must realize that even if you know how to talk dirty over text you need to let your partner know that this is not the typical text exchange you have every day. That way both of you will stick to the subject matter which, of course, is talking dirty.

Again, establishing the sexual context goes back to using the correct opening statements. While you may not out-rightly tell your man “I want you to make love to me right now” in the first text, don’t take too long before turning what appeared as just a casual text exchange into a sexual, conversation.

Build the anticipation… You have his attention, and the context is set, now it’s time to make him yearn for you. Use phrases that will create dirty images in his mind that will make him think about you. Tell him how much you miss him and how badly you wish you were together right now. Send him nude photos if you have to.

You can even go a step further and let him know how good he makes you feel. Shower him with praises and don’t relent until you have got him where you want him to be. The more the anticipation you create, the more turned you will make him.

Stay in charge… You need to control the direction at which the conversation takes. You can only do this by being in charge. Remember that you are the one who started the conversation and your man replies are based on what you say. You should know how to talk dirty over text in such a way that your man has no choice but to toe the line. When you are in charge, you are sure that at the end of it all, you will not only turn him on, but will ignite his sexual desire as well.

Have ready dirty talk ideas… You must have a few dirty lines at your fingertips to start a sexy conversation. These will help you set the stage faster when things begin to get hot.

Here are a few lines that will come in handy:

* I wish you were here with me right now.

* I would love to have you tonight.

* Tomorrow I will be all yours.

* Tell me what you want, and I will make sure it happens.

* I am so turned on right now.

Talking dirty is fun if done in the right manner. You should not take it as a serious business, and you can use it to change your sex life for the better. Now that you know how to talk dirty over text turning on your man and holding a sexual conversation is much easier. Have fun!

Anterior Lumbar Interbody Fusion (ALIF): Risks of Spinal Surgery

Spinal fusion is an invasive surgical procedure performed to provide stability to the spine in the case of degenerative disc disease, nerve impingement and/or vertebral movement (spondylolisthesis). The surgery entails the removal of a disc or portion of a disc and the placement of a bone graft in the disc space that will fuse the vertebrae together. Additional grafts and hardware may be used on the outside of the spinal column for extra stability.

Anterior lumbar interbody fusion (ALIF) is one type of spinal fusion surgery often performed to treat degenerative disc disease in cases where a lot of disc height has been lost. Anterior fusion is performed through an incision in the stomach. There are other approaches that dictate approaching through the back or side, but the anterior approach is favored sometimes for its avoidance of back muscles and spinal nerves.

ALIF is generally not performed on people with spinal instability caused by spondylolisthesis (vertebral fracture and movement) or tall disc spaces. In these cases, a posterior approach may be combined with ALIF to provide additional fusion sites.


Every type of surgery comes with unique risks. Risks that all types of fusion surgeries share are failure of fusion, bleeding, infection and scar tissue.

Anterior fusion carries unique risks due to its approach from the front of the body. One potential complication after surgery is incisional hernia. A hernia is present when part of the lining of the abdominal cavity, called the peritoneum, pushes through a hole or weak part in the connective tissue surrounding abdominal muscles and forms a sac. Incision of the abdomen can cause such a weak spot or hole. A hernia may be visibly protrude and retract when coughing or lifting. If it is painful to the touch or does not retract when pushed inward, surgery will likely be needed to patch the weak spot in the abdomen. Parts of organs can become trapped in the hole as the sac grows and blood supply can become cut off, strangling that part of the organ.

For males seeking fusion of the L5-S1 disc space, retrograde ejaculation is a concern. The anterior approach to this spinal segment puts the surgeon’s tools in close proximity with nerves supplying a valve that directs ejaculate from the body. If the nerve supply is damaged and the valve doesn’t open, the ejaculate will be directed to the bladder. While this does not pose risks to the man’s health or feeling of pleasure, it provides distinct complications with conception. An exact rate of incidence is unknown, but could be 5% or higher, according to, for men seeking anterior fusion at the L5-S1 segment.

A minimally-invasive form of ALIF is available that requires a smaller incision and the use of a laparoscope, or camera, that guides the surgeon’s tools. While this procedure generally promises shorter recovery time and less scarring, it also poses a unique risk to the great blood vessels, the vena cava and aorta, that lay over the spine and travel to the lower body. Normal ALIF may cause damage to these vessels at a 1-2% incidence rate; risk increases with laparoscopic anterior fusion as the surgeon has limited view and mobility inside the incision pathway. Interference with these blood vessels is a major concern as it causes excessive bleeding.

When considering surgery, it is always important to weigh the risks against the possible benefits. While most surgeons boast fusion rates of 95% and higher, studies exist that put the rate much lower. A small study with 85 participants found that overall fusion rate was 80%. The study also specified results by level of fusion; rate of failure was much higher (31%) at the L3-L4 level than at the L5-S1 level (16%). These are all factors to consider when deciding whether surgery and what type of surgery is worth the risk for your unique situation. More on the above study can be found at

A Last Resort

Any type of surgery is a last resort, yet not all spine surgeons are hesitant to prescribe fusions. Fusions are mainly performed to relieve pain from degenerating spinal discs. Have you exhausted all other treatment options for your condition?

Unless you are showing signs of major nerve damage (such as impaired bowel and bladder function), surgery should be a long way off. First, months of physical therapy should be performed to strengthen the core muscles that support the spine. You should be tested for muscle imbalances and postural distortions that could have caused excess pressure on the affected disc. A chiropractor or osteopath should check your spine for misalignment and resolve any if found.

Inversion therapy can be pursued at home to increase disc space, or decompression treatments can be sought from a chiropractor with a decompression machine in his or her office. Decompression treatments may or may not be covered by insurance, but they usually cost around $2,000 total without insurance. This is less than the out-of-pocket cost of spinal surgery for most people with insurance.

When considering various options for back pain treatment, be sure you’re informed of the risks and benefits. Anterior lumbar interbody fusion poses unique risks that should be understood before anything is signed off on.

An Introduction To Projectors

A projector is an apparatus for presenting an enlarged image on a screen from a transparency such as a photographic slide or a film. In a motion picture projector, each frame is held stationary at an illuminated aperture for a brief period, and then advanced by an intermittent sprocket or reciprocating claw, the light being cut off by a rotating shutter during the movement. The soundtrack on the film is reproduced at a separate sound head where the film is moved continuously at a constant speed.

An average projector usually has a picture resolution of 800 x 600 pixels. Most of the projectors weigh four to six pounds and come with a carrying case. All of the projectors have varied brightness and contrast levels – usually the brightness varies from 1300 lumens to 1500 lumens. A projector with a brightness of 1400 lumens proves to be a good choice for small to medium-sized, well-lit rooms.

Some of the indispensable parts of a projector are the feed spool, xenon arc lamp, projection lens, optical sound head, take up spool, an aperture, normal lens and rotating shutter. But with the advancement of science, new technologies have come into play. The projectors have become much more advanced in terms of clarity of picture and quality of the pixels. Also, the projectors have found use in everyday households, as new versions of domestic projectors have arrived on the market. The abundance of LCD projectors, DLP projectors and video projectors has enabled the common man to enjoy the experience of a big theater hall in his living room.

Disability Tax Credit For De Vivo Disease

In people with De Vivo disease their brains do not receive the right amount of the molecule called GLUT1 or Glucose transporter type 1. The GLUT1 ensures that the human brain gets the right and enough amount of glucose needed for its function. The lack of this molecule leads to insufficient amount of glucose in the blood, which in turn will not be able to transport the adequate amount of glucose to the brain. This will then lead to a blood brain barrier resulting in mental retardation and neurological problems.

Cause of De Vivo disease

The cause of this disease is the onset of blood barrier in the body. The glucose in the blood is being barricaded from getting into the brain and if the brain is not able to receive the glucose, there will be no glucose molecules to be transported in the body. This will then result in De Vivo disease.

Some of the symptoms of De Vivo disease are

— Delayed development

— Small head

— Seizures

— Low glucose level particularly in cerebrospinal fluid

— Ataxia

Complications of the disease

The most common complication is post spinal headache, which often leads to nausea. It is also characterized by delayed development or intellectual disability wherein the person has slow developments. Speech difficulties are to be expected as well. The disease is very rare and only 1 out of 10 people acquire the disease. That is why there are not too many resources about the disease and it is not widely talked about.

Disability tax benefit

De Vivo disease is really hard and a person who suffers from this needs to undergo therapy and ketogenic diet which can help with the seizures and ease the other symptoms as well. It is very obvious that a person who has this disease will not be able to study or work. However, there is a solution to that problem. You will be able to get a disability tax credit with the help of Canadian Disability Corporation (CDC). To benefit from the disability tax credit all you have to do is pass some requirements and your application will be evaluated by the professionals. The CDC is known for their fast compliance to those who wish to apply for the tax credits in order to get the benefits that will really help them a lot financially.

Washing Machines and Principles of Operation

Soil removal in a modern washing machine is a combination of chemical and mechanical processes.

1. Chemical action. The detergent or soap solution dissolves and loosens the soil in the fabric.

2. Mechanical action. Flexing the clothes and forcing the detergent or soap through removes the soil. The functioning of the washer is aided by the heat and softness of the water, which increases the chemical action of the detergent or soap used.

Almost all modern automatic washers employ one of two types of mechanical action, tumbler or agitator. The latter is by far the more popular and more commonly used. But all automatic washers, regardless of type, model, or make, have only four basic functions of operation: (1) fill, (2) wash, (3) pump out, and (4) extraction (spin).

The heart of the agitator-type washing machine is the agitator, which usually consists of vanes or blades on a cone that fits over a central shaft in the washer tub. As the agitator turns back and forth, the blades or vanes catches clothes and move them about. This movement also creates currents in the water, which contribute to the cleaning action.

There are almost as many agitator designs as there are washers that use agitators. Agitators have vanes or blades of various numbers, designs, and sizes, which are arranged in a vertical or spiral position. Agitators may be of solid or perforated plastic or metal (usually aluminum).

Most agitator-type washing machines employ an oscillating (back-and-forth) action during the wash cycle. To produce this oscillating action, the arm is generally connected off-center to a low-speed gear wheel. As this gear wheel turns, it imparts a back-and-forth motion to the arm. This motion, in turn, is transmitted to a pinion gear which drives the agitator.

There are also other methods of driving the agitator. For instance, a few models provide a slow-speed, off center, wobbling motion to the agitator, while some others impart an up-and-down, pulsating motion to it. While the oscillating action is the one most commonly used for the washing operation, some machines of this type employ a rotating or revolving motion to spin the tub or basket for the extraction operation. To accomplish this, a clutch action of some type is used to disengage one set of gears and engage the other. One such clutch used in washers consists of a pin dropping in place in a hole in the drive gear to engage it or it may be a friction type, as is frequently found in automobiles. Incidentally, agitator-type washing machines are top loading, meaning that the clothes are placed in the washer through a door or lid that opens on the top of the unit.

The front-load type of automatic washer has gained in popularity in recent years. The tumbler mechanism is a perforated cylinder, usually aluminum or porcelain-enameled steel, which holds the clothes; it revolves in a larger tub that holds the water. Within the cylinder are baffles, which are projections designed to carry the clothes along, through, and out of the water, until the position of the clothes causes them to fall downward again, and the process is repeated.

The axis of rotation of the washing cylinder usually is either parallel to the floor or inclined upward from the floor at approximately a 30 degree angle. A few have a vertical cylinder. Most tumbler-type washers are loaded from the front, but some can be loaded from the top or at an angle. During the washing cycle, the cylinder revolves slowly, tumbling the clothes about in soapy water. During the damp-dry cycle, the cylinder revolves rapidly, and centrifugal action helps to throw the water out of the clothes. The low speed for washing and the high speed for damp-drying are provided by the gears in a transmission as in an automobile. In a similar manner, there is a gear-shifting arrangement and a clutch to engage the gears.

The needs and components of both tumbler and agitator washers are about the same. For example, both require hot and cold water. This water is fed into valves in the washer which turn on and off the hot and cold water and mix them at appropriate times. While a few washers control water temperature with a thermostat, most operate on a simple on-off principle. When the hot water is on and cold is off, the water in the washer is hot-whatever temperature the water-heater tank provides. When the cold water is on and whatever temperature the cold-water tap provides. When both hot and cold are on, they are evenly mixed to provide warm water; with average cold water temperatures out of the tap (about 50F), the mixture comes out at about 100F.

All automatic washers have an electric motor as well as a pump. The motor on most models, in driving the washer through the wash and rinse cycles, operates in both the counterclockwise and clockwise directions when viewed from the top of the machine. It operates counterclockwise during the wash cycles and agitate-rinse operation and clockwise during the pump out and spin operations. The motor turns the pump and drive pulleys through a belt or motor-coupler arrangement. After the completion of the agitation or rinse, the water is pumped from the washer before the start of the rinse cycle. In this operation the motor is operating in the clockwise direction as it is in the spin; however, and overriding clutch disengages the transmission spin tube so the basket will not spin. At the end of the pump out period a solenoid releases the clutch spring and the spin basket rotates to extract the water from the clothes. The pump is usually in operation continuously. When the agitator is in operation, power is transferred directly into the transmission from the drive pulley through the transmission drive shat and clutch spring located inside the transmission case. During the pump out and spin periods the clockwise rotation of the motor releases the clutch.

Solenoids play a very important part in the operation of an automatic washer. In addition to operating the clutch and gearshift arrangements, they control water flow, detergent application and the like. Of course, the overall control of the automatic washer is left to the timer or the electronic control. While part of the control is selected by the user – for instance, washing time and water temperature-most of the automatic action is performed at certain preselected time intervals by the timer/control.

How to Lose Body Fat and Get Ripped With Diet Alone?

So here how to lose body fat without stepping in a gym. The mainstream media would like to have people believe that they must workout to lose body fat, but that simply isn’t the case. I am guessing that this is a good way to sell gym memberships, but I’d rather tell you the truth.

What a Back Injury in 2003 Taught Me

I injured my back in 2003 and was unable to walk let alone run. This was the first time in 15 years that I was unable to workout. This was really bad timing too. I had just bought tickets for a trip to Mexico with 4 other friends and we rented a beach villa in a prime spot on the Gulf of Mexico. I had 5 months until the trip and was injured so badly it hurt to stand.

Since I Couldn’t Workout, I Dieted Hard

I had about 10 pounds of fat to lose, but couldn’t lose this body fat through any exercise whatsoever. I had to simply create 100% of my calorie deficit through diet. To be honest I was skeptical that this would work. In the past I lived on the treadmill leading up to a vacation or for summer. I am great at getting lean through cardio and have never done this with diet alone.

I Dieted Down to 8% Body Fat in 3 Months

Losing body fat is one thing, but losing body fat when you are already pretty lean is tricky. It gets even trickier from doing this with diet alone. So how did I accomplish this? I drank a protein shake for breakfast, one for lunch, and then a salad with chicken and rice vinegar dressing for dinner. It was a bland way to eat, but it worked well. I allowed myself a Fuji Apple for desert if I was still hungry, but not every single night.

You Can Create A Bigger Calorie Deficit Through Diet Than You Can Through Exercise

The biggest thing I learned by going through this experience is that you can create a really large calorie deficit through diet alone. If my daily maintenance calorie level is 2,000, I can simply eat 1,200 and create a massive 800 calorie deficit. It takes a lot of exercise to burn 800 calories per day! I am just using this figure as an example, you don’t need to put yourself through such a big deficit.

Obviously Exercise Will Help When Maintaining Muscle

The only downside of using diet alone to lose body fat is that you won’t maintain all of your muscle mass. To be honest you won’t wither away, but you will lose a little muscle if you don’t train at least a little while following a strict diet. So the above is an extreme example of how to lose body fat without exercising.

Make A Hip Hop Beat: The Basic Recipe

If you are like me, you may have been wondering how music producers make a hip hop beat. Every time you hear a new slamming beat on the radio or Internet, the thought of how that person crafted such a wicked sound probably pops into your head. As I have found out through trial and error, there is no magic potion that producers sprinkle on their beats to make them come out sounding so nasty. Instead, many producers follow a predictive and simple basic recipe that enables them to produce quality beat after quality beat. I want to share with you what I have learned over time about how to construct a hip hop beat.

Song Pattern or Structure

When laying down an entire hip hop beat you need to first decide how you want to pattern or structure the beat. The rap beat structure will consist of an Intro, Verse, Chorus, Verse, Chorus, Bridge or Break and then Fade Out or even another verse before fading out. Keep this pattern in mind as you go through the process of creating your beat. Remember that the Intro will hit them with a taste of the entire song and will build into the first verse, which will then add a few more sounds to the overall beat. Typically the Intro and Chorus are 8 bars, the Verses are 8-16 bars, the Break or Bridge up to 8 bars and the Fade Out up to 8 bars as well. During the creative process, you may not know exactly how the song will be structured, because you are working out the beat etc. but at some point you are going to have to put up that framework.

Beats Per Minute (BPM)

Before you start banging out a memorable drum or bass line you need to set your BPM. With hip-hop, most songs hover in the 80-100 BPM range. However, you can play around with this setting and see what tempo works best for you.

Necessary Components of a Beat

There are four critical components of most banging hip hop beats. Using your Sequencer, Drum Machine and Keyboard you will be able to add all of these important parts into your beat. The four parts consist of:

Drums – Whether you have your own MPC or a drum machine on your computer you will be building your beat with the drum as the anchor. You will need to create a drum loop or pattern that will play throughout most, if not your entire beat. Many beat making software packages come preloaded with drum loops, which you can easily apply to your beat, or you can sequence or sample existing drum patterns using a variety of hardware of software options. Most quality drum machines will have tons of drums to choose from, so you don’t have to create your own.

Bass Line – What would a hip hop beat be without a devastating bass line? If you have the experience, and means, you can create your very own bass lines with a digital synth. However, your software should have loads of loops to throw into your beat. Remember that more bass is rarely a bad thing when it comes to a slamming rap beat.

Keyboard/Instrument sounds – Using either your physical keyboard or a software-based keyboard will enable you to add in different instruments. Most beats have some sort of keys added in, be it from a piano or other instrument. Play around with the numerous different sounds, and keep in mind what feeling you are trying to create with your beat.

Dubs/Samples – Another key aspect of any quality beat are the Dubs or Samples thrown in. Usually these dubs come from a quick sample of any variety of sources, including vocals, guitars, or some unique sound. Most sequencers come with many different samples, or you can purchase additional ones online or even record your own.

Get To Work

There is no secret to actually creating the beat, only creativity, hard work and lots of practice. The first few times you set out to build your beat you will definitely run into some roadblocks and face frustration. However, like anything in life, you will need to spend a good deal of time practicing the process of making a hip hop beat. Follow your song structure, add in all the four beat components and you will have a head-snapping beat in no time.

An Introduction to the Sumerian Civilization

About 6000 years ago, a civilization possessing a technology so advanced at the time that it seemed alien suddenly sprouted in the land between the Tigris and the Euphrates rivers, part of the so-called “Fertile Crescent.”

The early Greeks were the first to call this area Mesopotamia, which means “land between rivers.” These people (we know them today as Sumerians) called themselves sag-giga, the “black-headed people,” and they called their lands ki-en-gir. The Akkadians, however, referred to these people as Shumer (which may actually refer to the language); the Bible refers to this region as Shinar. The area is today found in southeastern Iraq.

The events that took place there are considered as among the most crucial events in human history. The Sumerians, in just a short time after settling in Mesopotamia, developed a very sophisticated system of irrigation and agriculture. The irrigation system took full advantage of the waters of the two rivers, which resulted in the significant increase of their agricultural yields. The Sumerians then built magnificent cities, advanced governing laws, and invented a written language. Where did these people come from?

Unfortunately, historians are uncertain on the Sumerians’ origin. Some archaeologists maintain that the Sumerians’ origin is from lands northeast of Mesopotamia, while others say they are really from Anatolia. Indeed, no one is really quite sure where these people originally came from. When the Sumerians arrived in Mesopotamia, there were already people living there (the Ubaidians), but they were quickly supplanted by the newcomers.

Ancient Sumerians invented the wheel, probably while spinning clay to make potteries on a simple wheel. Eventually, the wheel was used for transport, on carts pulled by donkeys. Later on, it was used for war chariots. They also invented a system of mathematics based on the number 60. We still divide the hour by 60 minutes, and the minutes by 60 seconds. The idea of dividing the circle by 360 degrees is also from them, as well as the division of day into 24 hours, and of the year into twelve months. Archaeologists found evidence that Sumerians developed writing as early as 3500-3000 BC. The Sumerians’ early form of writing was made up of pictures. The pictures were later on simplified, with symbols being used to represent sounds. This style of writing is known today as cuneiform, which is from the Latin word cuneus (wedge).

The Sumerians also seem to have developed one of the first monarchial systems of government. The early Sumerian states, which are the first states in human history, were ruled by a type of priest-king. Their government was actually a combination of monarchy and democracy. Elected officials in the Assembly also ruled the people: kings had to consult the Assembly in matters of state. Laws that were written down during Babylonian times were actually laws created by ancient Sumerians.

The Sumerians had twelve city-states, each with their own ruler, and with their own temple. One city, Ur, contained around 24,000 inhabitants. These city-states were surrounded by walls, which included nearby lands and villages. The central structure of the city is the temple, called ziggurats.

The Sumerians were polytheistic; that is, they worshipped many gods, including goddesses. Major deities were Enki, who put order to the universe, and Inanna (later known as Ishtar), the “Queen of Heaven.”

The society of the Sumerians had three classes: the upper class, which was made up of the nobility, priests, government officials, and warriors; the freemen, made up of merchants, traders, and artisans; and the lower class, made up of serfs and slaves. Women can own property, but they did not have the same rights as the men. A husband can divorce his wife for any reason, but a wife cannot initiate divorce proceedings on her own. However, women played a vital role in these ancient kingdoms. Their society was matriarchal, and women were highly respected.

At the start of every year, the goddess Inanna must enact a sacred “ritual marriage” with the ruler to ensure a bountiful harvest for the coming year. The goddess was represented by a priestess in this “marriage” with the king.

Other Sumerian inventions are the sailboat, frying pans, razors, cosmetic sets, pottery, and the plow. Sumerians also created a lunar calendar based on the lunar month and even mapped the stars into constellations, which later became the zodiac. These people also established the first formal schools.

There were many skilled Sumerian artisans. They made well-designed jewelry from gold and precious stones, furniture, and potteries. They also created colorful mosaics in intricate and beautiful patterns using bits of painted clay. Sumerians also used musical instruments like harp, reed pipes, drums, and lyres.

The modern world learned of the existence of Sumer through references in the literature of ancient civilizations; these literature speak of an even older civilization, which turned out to be that of the Sumerians’. Excavations in 1842 to 1854 in various places in Mesopotamia led to the discovery of this remarkable people and their achievements.

Surfing – Exercises From the Board Up

If you want to exercise to get in shape for surfing start with your feet. The feet help provide shock absorption, balance, force, control, power, flexibility, strength and agility to your ride.

So how do you get started? Most surfers have already done some benefit to your feet by walking barefoot on sand or smooth rocks… not so sure about the coral.

All of the following exercises can be done in bare feet.


Start by rolling a tennis ball under your foot. This helps awaken the soft connective tissue (fascia). Do not put your full weight on the foot being rolled. Work up to using more pressure and using a lacrosse ball or golf ball. Roll the ball with a little more pressure under the heels, balls and outer edge of your feet and less pressure in the arches and toes. Spend at least 1 minute on each foot.

Try to pickup sand/small rocks with your toes. Once you have accomplished this task try to fling the objects with your toes.

Lift your foot off the ground and write in the air your favorite surfing spot. Pretend your toes are a pen and your ankle is a wrist.

With your feet apart keep your heels stationary and push/drag the balls of the feet and toes outwards away from center. When they are out as far as they can go (duck footed) lift the front of the feet off the ground (heels stationary) and bring them back to neutral. 10-15 times.

With your feet apart keeping your heels stationary lift the balls of your feet and toes up and go outwards. When they are out as far as they can go bring the front of the feet down and drag them back to neutral. 10-15 times.

Press your four small toes down and try to raise your big toe. This is a difficult exercise and when you first attempt it you can lightly hold down your 4 toes with your hand. Sometimes if you tap or lightly push the arch of your foot it helps. 10-15 times.

Press your big toe down and try to raise you 4 little toes. Again, you can start by spreading your toes as far apart as you can. Hold for 3-5 seconds 5-10 times.

Rock feet back and forth from heels to toes. 15 – 20 times.


Walk on your heels and then walk on the balls of your feet.

Lift your big toe and feel your arch go up. Bring toe down and try to keep the arch raised for a few seconds.

Stand on a step with the balls of your feet on the step and your heels hanging over the edge. Slowly use the whole front of the foot to rise up as high as you can then drop your heels down as low as you can get them. 10 -20 times.

If it hurts do not do it! This includes if you feel pain in your knees as you work your feet. See a foot doctor for pain, surfer’s toe and fungal issues.