Facts About Home Interiors

The interiors include the indoor and outdoor surroundings of your living space. The home reflects the persons living in the house. It reflects the person’s lifestyle. It is very important to choose your home interiors at the time of designing the structure of your house. Structuring your house in a way to accommodate your interiors well will not only make your house look more beautiful but it will also become comfortable to live in and ultimately increases its resale value.

Today’s time is very stressful for each one of us. In order to improve the quality of our lives, it is very important to accommodate the interiors which will give us inner peace and a relaxing environment. One way to enhance the beauty of your house can be – landscaping. It means to decorate your house with more and more plants. Flowers give a fresh look to the house and at the same time enhance the aesthetic beauty of it.

A well furnished home not only looks good but makes one’s life simpler and comfortable. Furniture plays a vital role in designing the home interiors. When you are designing your own house, try to have knowledge about maximum space utilization, lighting, colors which can best match with your own needs.

While designing your own living space, it is important to listen to your heart as well as work with your brains. There are few tips which you can use while giving your house a new fresh look. First and the foremost tip are to observe your living space and surroundings. Look into your surrounding nature and see what best you can utilize from there. Second, create your own personal mode. There are many things from where you can get ideas about designing your living space. Find your own style in various books, TV serials, magazines. Third, color your world. Splash the colors on your walls which excite you and which go well with your personality. Colors stimulate your moods and senses. Forth, furnish your home with furniture. Bring home the furniture which reflects your personality and which you think is stylish. Your furniture should be comfortable enough which gives you sound rest.

Give Your Home a Worthy Upgrade With Laminate Tile Flooring

Laminate tile  flooring  is a great way to give your home a worthy upgrade. This method of  flooring  is very popular around the world and it started in Europe more specifically in Switzerland. Many manufacturers have taken up the task of spreading this product and you will find many dealerships that will offer you fair prices. Apart from being very affordable, laminate tile  flooring  is very attractive with an elegant style that will leave you mesmerized. A lot of information on this kind of  flooring  is available and you can get to know what the advantages and disadvantages are. The internet will be a good place to start but, you can get information from your manufacturer or dealer at your local store.

Laminate tile  flooring  is made out of several synthetic products and this ensures reinforcement to give it that durable quality to it. Some of the products that are used are melamine, aluminum oxide, fiber board composite product and a backing layer which mostly prevents the leakage of moisture. Some of the most popular companies that make the product are pergo which is the pioneer of the business. The other companies are Wilsonart, Formica, Shaw, Armstrong, Mohawk and many others. It is vital for you to get products from reputable companies to ensure the quality is not compromised. You can go for many colors, designs and shapes that will suit your home.

The laminate tile  flooring  tiles are available in 24 by 24 inch where you will find them designed to be glued or snapped. You will need a smooth and even surface to install the  flooring  and depending on the manufacturer of your product, you will have installation guides. This guides are usually very different and they require your concentration and accuracy for you to achieve success with them. You need to take every precaution or care so that you are able to have  flooring  that will last for a long time. Cleaning is very simple and all you need is a damp mop to ensure your surface is clean and inviting.

As you consider laminate tile  flooring , find out what others think and how their experience has been using the products. Most likely you will find all the necessary information you need to make and informed decision while purchasing. The internet will provide all the product reviews from consumers and you will know what the  flooring  is all about. If you already have the  flooring , Get helpful tips that will enable you care for the  flooring  better. Also you will find the necessary caution that will help you evade any problem that might arise. For example, you should avoid the use of any abrasives because they might scratch or ruin the floor. Finally, you should never neglect the caution from the manufacturer or the recommendations they give. This is because they know best how to take care of the product. Also, if they have installation manuals, consider following them to achieve good results. You will not regret getting this amazing  flooring .

Field-Effect Sensors Eliminate Pump Switch Failure: Residential Applications

Executive Summary

Field-Effect sensing has the unique ability to detect fluids and semi-solid materials without making direct contact. If the material being targeted is conductive in nature, and the barrier wall through which is being is non-conductive, then Field-Effect is the technology of choice. Field-Effect sensing technology is ideally suited for sump, lift station, underground vault, wet well and storm water fluid level management applications.

Since 1997, nearly 200 million Field-Effect sensors have been deployed in industries such as appliance, consumer, automotive, medical and fitness (e.g., liquid level sensing, or in touch activated machine controls). By 2005, Field-Effect sensors had become the de facto standard for fluid level detection in marine and recreational vehicle applications, such as holding tank level monitoring and bilge pump control systems.

Over the years, pump life has been limited to the durability of a single component, the mechanical contact switch. As switch technology progressed from non-integrated to integrated float and switch designs, improved manufacturing processes, advanced coatings, etc, pump durability continued to be governed by the limitations of the mechanical contact switch and associated moving parts.

Recent advancements in solid-state electronic design have enabled a generation of more reliable pump controls. Durability issues surrounding the mechanical contact switches were eliminated with the use of solid-state transistors to manage high current switching. Although this was a considerable improvement in itself, the remaining question was how to reliably detect changes in liquid level without the use of moving floats, or without making direct electrical contact with the fluid?

Non-contact sensing technology was considered to be the answer, and even though there were several technical solutions available in the marketplace (capacitive, ultrasonic, and optical), only capacitive has proven to be a practical and cost effective for residential sump pump applications. The limitation of capacitive is that it’s prone to false actuations and pump run-on attributed to the varying mineral content of the water being managed and the associated scum build up on the sensors themselves as the water level fluctuates. In addition, capacitive technology has required complex software algorithms to establish an environmental baseline for switching, which is a challenge in itself. The solution to these obstacles proved to be non-contact, s Field-Effect sensing technology coupled with solid-state switching components.

Engineers and plumbing professionals should consider Field-Effect a “best in class” solution when evaluating fluid level detection technologies. The benefit of a five (5) year warranty with solid state Field-Effect control makes it an economical choice for facilities management professionals. No longer is the pump switch the limiting factor in an organizations scheduled maintenance activities.

Economic Background for Residential Applications

With more than 10% of all residential structures that have full or partial basements reporting leakage from outside the structure through the basement (American Housing Survey for the United States: 2007, U.S. Department of Commerce, September 2008, Table 2-7, p. 62), the proper operation of the sump pump system for homeowners is imperative. The consequences of switch failure for residential sump pumps and their industrial equivalents extend far beyond the cost of repair.

Homeowners have always been faced with the potential cost and inconvenience of restoration of basements, but, in addition, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) has identified mold as an environmental pollutant that diminishes indoor air quality (IAQ). The mitigation of molds caused by indoor moisture has become a public health issue that is now reflected in the home inspection process.

Homeowners and operators of public buildings now face risks in the longer term for reporting and/or filing claims for water damage. Faced with large increases in claims for water damage, the insurance industry has established a database, known as the Comprehensive Loss Underwriting Exchange (CLUE), to facilitate the exchange of information among insurers to drop or deny coverage based on a home’s history of claims or damage reports. The proper functioning of pumps and their switches is paramount to maintaining public health and to preserving the value of residential and commercial structures for their owners.

Homeowners, installers, and other industry professionals can also take advantage of the added cost savings opportunity of purchasing a less expensive pump which does not include the switch function as part of the offering. These pumps are typically priced at the low end of the commercial spectrum, even though mechanically, they’re the same sump pump being offered in the high-end systems with integrated switch capability. This retail savings can range anywhere from $15.00 to $80.00 depending on the pump model and retail outlet selected.

Technical Overview

Field-Effect sensors are digital, solid-state electronic devices that can detect conductive materials or liquids such as water or the human touch. The sensor’s cell design uses an integrated circuit (IC) that switches its output state when the conductive target is sensed. A Field-Effect cell is comprised of three main elements, the IC, a unique sensing electrode geometry, and two resistors. Moreover, Field-Effect requires no moving parts, floats, software, or any other mechanism to make its sensing decision.

When 5 VDC is supplied to the sensor, a low power electric field is created. The field emanates directly through any protective dielectric barrier such as plastic or glass that may surround or cover the sensor. When a conductive object or material enters the field, the sensor detects the change and indicates an event has occurred with a corresponding output signal. The input stimulus to the field is typically water in most liquid level sensing applications, as is the case in TouchSensor’s™ LevelGuard Home Sump Pump Control product line.

The performance advantages of Field-Effect sensors in plumbing applications include:

  • Solid-state electronic designwith no moving parts or electrical contacts to wear out, bind, or become contaminated by fluids. All electronics are encased in rugged plastic and are completely isolated.
  • Fail-safe recognition from Underwriters Laboratories(UL File# – E187820)
  • Six (6) year replacement warrantywith an optional four (4) year extended warranty in fluid sensing applications. Field-Effect fluid detection sensors have been tested to over 1.5 million operational cycles without failure.
  • Operating temperature range of -40°C to 120°C. Accelerated life testing of Field-Effect sensors (cycling temperature between 0°C and 105°C and relative humidity between 40% and 85%) has confirmed an operational life of more than 20 years without failure.
  • Immunity to contaminants. The low impedance nature of the Field-Effect sensor design, combined with proprietary electrode geometry, make the Field-Effect sensor highly resistant to the effects of surface contaminants and mineral buildup.

Summary

The importance of reliability in fluid detection systems has increased over time. Under pressure to cost-reduce their products while improving system performance, manufacturers (and their vendors) have cautiously introduced innovations through their channels of distribution. Engineers and plumbing professionals now have the ability to specify a fluid level control system that meets and/or exceeds the performance needs of their system designs and client expectations.

How To Put On Muscle Without Fat

As we all now big and bulky is over; the quest is to get that lean and toned look. But how do we put muscle on without fat?

Muscle and fat are like oil and water, they definitely are not the same, and you don’t want to mix them. Except this is exactly what does happen, all too often in badly thought out bulk up strategies.

Yes we want muscle, but in the right way, and gaining lean muscle without fat is the key to doing so. Yet we know that we need a certain amount of muscle as guys in order to look and feel good. So the question of how to put on muscle without fat is an important one. Here are some tips to help you.

1) Avoid bulking

Trying to bulk up is not the best way to beef up. The only shape we gain from this is a rounder and softer one, like a doughnut! Nope, the key to putting on muscle really doesn’t require you to suddenly start to eat like a Sumo wrestler.

2) Use your nutrition plan to keep lean

Since you don’t need extra calories to stimulate muscle growth you can eat at maintenance, or even below so that you lose fat and gain muscle at the same time. This is the route to a rapid improvement in your proportions and the way you look.

3) Never ever use the scale to gauge progress!

Seriously if you are wanting to improve the look and shape of your body the number on the scale really doesn’t matter. How much do you think an inch on your arms actually weighs anyhow? Its way to common to see people growing more and more out of shape, but sticking with the plan because the number on the scale is going up. Don’t be one of them. If you are gaining weight quickly, be worried, it’s probably fat.

4) Know what signs to look for

Rather than bodyweight, use the mirror and signal clothes to let you know you are putting on muscle without fat. As you do so you will see your waist should decrease or stay the same, with your chest and shoulders increasing to indicate lean muscle gain. This will also move you towards the ideal lean toned look with a v-shaped torso. You’ll be able to see the difference and so will everyone else.

5) Use effective and efficient workouts

More really isn’t better. Long workouts aren’t needed and just lead to overtraining and burnout. They also tend to lead to you eating more to compensate for all that gruelling work you are doing. This is a lose-lose as you will end up tired, and gaining weight!

Instead of the marathon workouts you may see peddled in the muscle media of the hulky bodybuilder, use brief intense workouts. Aside from saving you time to actually have a life, they create a cocktail of beneficial fat melting hormones, to help you look better, and feel younger.

Less training means you also minimise stress hormones that prevent muscle building and encourage fat storage.

Knowing how to put on muscle without fat and not giving up your life to do so will help you not just to become better looking, but to live a better, more fun-filled life.

Bowling Tips for an Effective Spin

In order to be a good bowler it is very important to learn to spin the ball. When talking about 10-pin bowling, deliveries come in two categories. Straight shots are the fundamental shots in bowling and hook shots are a little more advanced. You need to master both to become a great bowler.

Obviously, if you’re trying to throw a straight shot then the bowling ball should follow a straight path to the bowling pins. In the other category is the hook shot, which curves as it gets closer to the pins. A hook shot looks like a straight shot at the beginning, but then it starts to curve before it reaches its target.

That sudden curve of the ball will cause it to spin on its axis. It will continue to do so until it comes in contact with the bowling pins. A spinning bowling ball will roll down the lane just like a ball that isn’t spinning. The change comes when it starts to make a slight   tilt  when it gets close to the end of the lane and then alters course. Before you can learn to hook your shots you must first learn how to spin the ball.

1. You have to have patience and skill to learn how to do a powerful spin. The correct kind of ball is also important. Generally, all bowling balls have the ability to spin on their axis when you release it. Keep in mind that if the reason you’re trying to hook the ball is because you’re trying to known down a few scattered pins you will need either a reactive resin or urethane bowling ball.

What is the reason for this? Bowling balls covered with a urethane or reactive resin cover stock are more capable of gripping the dry area of the bowling lane than plastic balls are. It is extremely difficult to throw hooks using plastic balls, but it is possible. It can be very frustrating, especially for an accomplished bowler.

2. It is important to learn how to release the bowling ball while you are still in motion toward the foul line. Some bowlers will stop for a fraction of a second before their release. There really isn’t anything wrong with this approach, but it is much easier to spin the ball if you are still in a forward motion. That little bit of extra momentum will help your bowling ball to spin on its axis.

3. Make sure to grip your bowling ball in such a way that you can release it easily. You should also make sure to develop a delivery that keeps your arm straight during both the forward and backswings. You don’t want to “muscle” the ball too much during the release or the downswing.

Your body’s momentum as you move forward is the best kind. According to the laws of physics, as long as you are still in motion, that same motion will be transferred to your bowling ball.

4. To make the perfect hook shot just pivot your hand or your wrist just before the final release of your bowling ball. Pretend like you’re turning a key to the three o’clock position. Release the ball just as you rotate your hand and there you have it. The perfect hook shot!

Shield Your Digital Camera With Shades

If you think that shades or sunglasses are only created for people, think again. Many of you may not be aware that the digital cameras have their own version of the shades as well. And just like the shades we all know, those for digital cameras are also meant to protect them from the harmful rays of the sun.

Exposing digital cameras to too much heat outdoors is not ideal. The LCD screen is very sensitive to light the reason why you need to shield it from extreme sunlight as much as possible to avoid any damage. This should not be a problem today, though, as there are digital camera accessories such as the shades that you can use. They’re not only great in protecting your highly valuable gadget but they are also very affordable.

* Xtend-a-View – This combines an LCD shade and a 2x power magnifying loupe eyepiece where you can view the images you’re taking. Selling at $16.95 on retail, this accessory can be easily attached to the viewfinder screen of your digital camera through its self adhesive Velcro strips. If you’re not using the shade, the Velcro strips can be easily removed. Created by Williams & Associates, this Xtend-a-View shade fits more models and can be used together with other add-ons such as the Extend-a-Lens and Extend-a-Bracket.

* JAR sun shield – Unlike the Xtend-a-View which is a closed type of digital camera shade, this one created by Jess Russel is the open type. It covers the sides and top part of your LCD screen with the bottom part open allowing you to see your images clearly even while exposed to sunlight while at the same time giving you easy access to the control buttons of your camera. It can also be attached using Velcro strips. There’s a newer version, though, where the bottom part is already covered to block reflections coming from below. Available in black, this digital camera accessory is very convenient because you can just fold it after use and store it in your bag. This brand is selling for a very affordable price of $10.

* Hoodman LCD   sunshades  – These are the folding type of  sunshades  which come in different sizes. Ideal for use on LCD screens and video monitors, they can be attached via an elastic strap and Velcro fastener although the strap can’t be used in all camera models especially the larger ones. For mini digital video cameras, this  sunshade  can be strapped through its elastic cord to the video monitor to keep it steady. Even with the elastic strap, it’s still possible to access the control buttons of the gadget. You have the option, though, to use the supplied self adhesive Velcro strips around the LCD screen for fast mounting.

The Hoodman  sunshade  is an open type which covers all sides of your LCD screen to keep sunlight away. It’s small, lightweight, can easily be folded and sells at a reasonable price of $19.95.

Remember to get yourself one of these sun shades for your digital camera so that the next time you head outdoors, you can take as many pictures as you want even while under the sun.

Types of Building Materials

Cement, bricks and tiles are the main building materials used in the construction of buildings. Today, increase in the demand for various building materials have led to many building material manufacturing companies. Many new building materials are environmental hazards, which have become a big concern to all.

Traditionally, the basic types of building materials used for construction were mud, stone and brush. Mud was used for filling the spaces between bricks and acted as a concrete and insulation. Centuries ago, houses were made entirely of dirt and clay. This was followed by the use of rocks (mainly granite) as building material. From the Neolithic period through the medieval age to modern times, granite has been commonly used as a building material. Brush structures were commonly seen in tropical areas and were made entirely from plant parts such as branches, bark, twigs and leaves. These structures were often used by Native Americans as resting places.

Stones and bricks were also common in construction. Different types of bricks have been and are still used for masonry. This includes specially shaped bricks for joints, striking and tooling, as well as glazed or rubbed bricks for decorative purposes.

Thatch is one of the oldest types of building material used for roofing. Another generic building material is wood. Because of the diverse character of different types of wood, it can be used for any type of structure in most climates. Even though wood structures were very common in earlier times, they disappeared with the approach of concrete structures.

Concrete is a composite building material comprised of aggregate and a binder (cement). Concrete finds good use in all types of building construction. Fly ash is a major ingredient in the concrete mix because of its lightweight and high thermal insulation.

More recently, new types of building materials are being used. These include metals (for the structural framework of larger buildings), plastics, asbestos and fabrics. Tar-based waterproof materials, paper linoleum, polyvinyl chloride clay and solvent coatings for inner wall are other building materials.

Future Shock: Voice Recognition Identification Technology

Backgrounder: Kay Hughes, flight attendant for today’ s non-stop coast-to-coast flight is busy checking her catering order and prepping the cabin. Bob Harmon is the captain and Jeff Mortowski is his first officer. Both are situated in the cockpit going over the pre-flight checklist. The pax are from various companies in the New York area or individuals on personal business who have bought seats on his flight.

The Story: Kay woke up with a start as the alarm on her clock radio blared. Reaching across her pillow, she noticed the time, 5:15, and hammered the snooze button in the hopes of grabbing another five minutes of sleep. Tired as she was, her mind began to race as she considered the day ahead. In less than four hours she would be enroute to L.A. with an aircraft full of passengers. Slowly the thought of additional sleep became less important as she considered all that she had to do before leaving Teterboro. Quietly she slipped on her robe and slippers, poured herself a cup of coffee, and slinked into the shower.

As Kay walked across the tarmac, she saw the fuel truck pulling up to her aircraft and the caterer at the gate waiting for a security clearance. It was 6:48 and already she could feel the heat lifting off of the pavement. Another scorcher she thought; at least L.A. will be cooler.

Kay greeted Jeff who was busy overseeing the fuel delivery; she then climbed onboard the G-V and gave a similar greeting to Bob who was occupied with updating paperwork. Bob finished what he was doing and briefed Kay with the day’s schedule. Minutes later Kay turned to assist the approaching caterer with the day’s order. Within the hour, the first of the passengers began to arrive. Each sat in the lobby of the FBO waiting to be boarded. At precisely 8:00 a.m., Kay left the aircraft and walked down the ramp to the FBO. She whispered to the waiting security agent who signaled to the FBO customer service representative to make the boarding announcement. “Ladies and Gentlemen, Jet Aviation Flight #001 departing TEB for LAX is now boarding. Please present your identification card and boarding pass to the security agent. Once you are cleared, you will be boarded. Thank you for flying Jet Aviation and enjoy your flight.”

Kay turned and left the FBO and walked back to the aircraft. Both pilots were onboard completing their preflight preparations. Kay stood at the bottom of the steps leading up to the aircraft waiting for the security agent to bring the passengers to the plane. She knew that with fourteen passengers the security clearance would take a bit longer than normal.

Kay considered waiting inside the cabin to keep cool, but knew that it was important that she greet the passengers at the base of the steps in case one of them needed assistance climbing up.” It must already be 85 degrees out here,” she thought as she watched the heat vapors rise off the pavement.

After what seemed like an inordinate delay — Kay’s hair was slowly losing style in the heat — Bob poked his head out of the cockpit and said, “Sorry for the delay, but we caught another one.” Startled, Kay stammered, “You mean one of the passengers failed security clearance?” Bob replied, “Not only that but he is on the FBI’s wanted list of suspected terrorists. The remaining passengers checked out okay, but we’ll be delayed until the agents finish interviewing them to see if they knew the guy.” Despite the heat, Kay shivered as she thought of the potential chain of events a terrorist onboard the aircraft might unleash.

Her fears gradually subsided when Jeff reminded her that the VOICE RECOGNITION IDENTIFICATION TECHNOLOGY (VRIT) unit in the FBO was flawless in the nearly six months of use. Over that time, twenty-six people with a criminal element were pulled, most of whom had been charged previously with petty crimes [such as tax evasion] and were either on the run or would be in violation of their parole restrictions had they left the state. Today marked the first time that a suspected terrorist was caught and as the squad car sirens wailed, Kay knew that this day would be anything but normal.

The above account is fiction, but it pre-supposes a couple of things that could occur in the intervening years that would bring about similar results, i.e., additional and more widespread terrorist attacks being a primary consideration. In addition, a change in the way we do business, i.e., selling seats to individuals instead of selling the entire flight to a company or an individual would have to occur — no longer would you have a lead passenger who could identify all of the other passengers. VRIT is now within reach and will, more than likely, become the norm of the day. Essentially, it works this way: a person speaks into a device that immediately matches the voice pattern with one in the database. The database identifies the person and when a match is made, the person is cleared [unless the database turns up a warrant for their arrest].

Naturally, in order to get onboard a flight we would require passengers to be part of that database. This could occur if VRIT becomes as mandatory as holding a social security number or a driver’s license. Foreign nationals would have to be keyed into the same system to make it work, so the potential for a worldwide Orwellian-type system would be great.

Recently, I had the opportunity to meet with Russ Cooper, a managing partner with COMPUTEK, a Wall Street company that has developed the latest generation of VRIT. He shared with me that both the FBI and CIA use an older generation of VRIT and his company is marketing the current one. Their customer base potential is impressive: government agencies, security firms, airports, airliners, automobile manufacturers, you name it. Wherever a positive i.d. on a person is needed, their technology might be utilized.

According to Russ, the technology is fail-safe. When I mentioned that a voice impersonator like a Richard Little type could sneak by, he claimed that VRIT would still know who he was even with the “Richard Nixon” voice. Apparently, voice patterns are distinguishable even when disguised.

We did not discuss “price” as he was not marketing his product directly to me. I can only imagine that the costs involved would be significant, but then I began to think that they could possibly be offset by lower insurance premiums if insurance companies see the benefit of “guaranteeing” passenger security.

So what role could the flight attendant play in utilizing VRIT? Perhaps in lieu of a security agent [especially in out of the way places like Bozeman, Montana], a VRIT unit would be assigned to your aircraft — much like a cardiac defibrillator monitor — and you would greet each passenger as they boarded the aircraft. Before the aircraft could be cleared for takeoff, the passengers would speak into the handheld VRIT and be given a security clearance on the spot.

Let’s return to our story and amend it with the security check being placed directly in the flight attendant’s hands:

Kay walked down the G-V’s steps carrying her mobile VRIT device and waited as the passengers exited the FBO and made their way to the aircraft. She announced, “Welcome onboard Jet Aviation flight #001 bound for Los Angeles. Please speak your name into the VRIT unit. Once you have been cleared, you may proceed up the steps. The first officer will take your boarding pass and you may be seated. If you need additional assistance, the captain will be glad to help you.”

One by one the passengers filed by, stating their name and waiting for the green clearance light to flash. As they spoke, a signal was transferred to an orbiting satellite and then beamed to VRIT headquarters in Washington, DC. As the last of the passengers approached, Kay continued to greet each one and wait for clearance. Finally, when all passengers were cleared, she climbed the steps and had both pilots speak into the VRIT unit. At last, Kay placed the unit in the First Officer’s hands in order to have him run clearance on her. Kay cleared her throat, spoke her name, but after an extended pause, the VRIT beeped loudly and signaled red. The color in Kay’s face drained away and she turned to flee. Within moments several arms reached forward to apprehend her as sirens wailed in the background.

All she could think about was running away…

Startled, Kay awoke from her dream as the snooze alarm blared away.

900 Vertical Feet

Lots of excuses help justify not commuting by bike. One of the goals of this article is to dispel all of them: for myself as much as anyone else. People cite the rain, the dark, the traffic, the subway challenges, and the lack of bike ways as reasons not to bike to work. Today I’m profiling myself to dispel yet another excuse for not riding: hills. Wind, rain, and darkness come and go but a hill is a motivational challenge that is the most consistent if not the most formidable.

My ride starts at the top of the Oakland Hills. It drops 900 feet in less than a half mile to the subway (BART) station I take out to the valley. This makes for an exciting but death-defying ride down. Of course, it also makes for a brutal climb back up at the end of a work day that can haunt your decision to ride. When I first started riding it, the hill alone was a sufficient excuse. “I’m just too tired to face the climb today,” I’d say. After a while, I would combine this with another excuse:

  • It is unacceptable to employ a 4000 pound machine to haul 15 pounds of groceries
  • It’s raining and it is too dangerous
  • Now that it’s daylight savings it’s too dark
  • I ate lunch too late in the day and I’m too full
  • There’s frost on the road and it’s too cold

Nevertheless, for the last year, I have managed to press through all this B.S. at least 3 times a week on average. I’ve biked up this hill in driving rain with heavy wind in the dark and enjoyed doing it (thanks to great lights and rain gear). I’ve ridden it with frost on the road with mittens and 2 sets of leggings. I’ve ridden up the hill right after drinking 2 beers and a large burrito. After all that, the hill is not so intimidating anymore.

The biggest challenge now is managing all the temperature differences. Some days I start above the fog in freezing cold air, arrive at the subway under the fog where it is virtually raining, then cycle the remainder of my ride in the valley under a hot sun. Dressing for all these temperature changes without freezing or sweltering is the trickiest part now. I literally do not worry much about the hill anymore. I never thought I’d say that.

Once down the hill, I catch the subway out to the valley. Here’s the subway station on both a sunny and a rainy day. In the rainy day picture, you can see how the cyclist count plummets. The “it’s raining excuse” is obviously in full effect. I honestly don’t know why anymore. Folks think nothing of going out in a snow storm to go skiing or snowboarding. With the right gear it’s doable. The same is true for cycling so what’s the deal? Rainy days are when we really need folks not to drive.

At the subway station there’s often 10+ degree difference in temperature so I strip down on the train on the way out. On a good day, there’s a lovely view of beautiful Mount Diablo. From there it’s off for my morning cappuccino at Peet’s.

After my cappuccino, I head off to one of the great bike trails in the Bay Area and one of the great things about my ride: the Iron Horse Trail. My ride has remarkably few cars on it. In fact, a route will soon exist that allows me to leave my subway station in the valley and arrive at my office without riding near any cars. Extraordinary. I wish it wasn’t but I’m savoring this wonderful experience regardless.

At the first   bridge  I cross, I’ve almost stashed on the frosty redwood planks in winter but otherwise I just love crossing this on my way to work. A lovely creek flows below. I often pass folks doing Tai Chi or playing soccer on the lawn. It all makes for an uplifting start to my day.

The next  bridge  I cross, an old steel  bridge  left over from the days when this trail was part of a railway system, holds a lot of charm for me.

The last  bridge  on my route in is not as quaint but it impresses me on a number of levels. First, it gets me over the fast-moving boulevard I would have to take if the dedicated bike path didn’t exist so I love going over this rather than going through what you see here below. Second, the age and design of this  bridge  is such that it cannot possibly be a hold over from the railroad days. That means the voters of this area agreed to spring for the cost of putting it here when there are so many other priorities competing for the funds. For that, I am eternally grateful. I average about 22 MPH on this path which would be too slow for cars on that boulevard below but too fast for pedestrians if I were on a sidewalk or smaller trail.

Once I’m over the  bridges , the rest is a pretty mellow straightforward bike trail. Other cyclists draft me in their jeans while I’m in spandex. I’m impressed but I pity them for the chafing they must endure.

Naturally, the end of the day is just this path in reverse with a few exceptions. One is that I am occasionally blessed with views featuring a tree with the moon and Mount Diablo in the background. Another is that I often stop off for a second coffee or tea at Cole’s Coffee for the ride up.

I started out going straight up after getting off the train because any pause would risk a loss of will power and a call to friends for a ride up the hill. I would just power up the hill before the excuses took hold. However, I had to stop doing that because it meant my after work quality of life suffered. When I drove to work, I often met friends, ate dinner, ran errands, or otherwise lingered down the hill before heading home. It was something I enjoyed and something I missed when I skipped. Consequently, now I often cruise over to Cole’s for coffee, or Lanesplitter Pizza for dinner with friends and I don’t let the onset of fog or dark worry me when I do. I just finish what I’m doing then put on my jacket, flip on my light and pedal up the hill.

Mentally conquering this hill has taken me a long way towards viewing cycling as the rule for transport rather than the exception. The last hurdle is hauling significant loads of groceries or other stuff up this hill. If I’ve got to haul more than 15 pounds of cargo, I still wind up using my car.

I’m not a bike purist. I don’t believe it has to be bikes all the time in all cases. That’s why I combine bikes with trains. That’s why I consider car use when I have serious hauling to do. Nevertheless, it is unacceptable to me to employ a 4000 pound machine to haul 15 pounds of groceries. “Right-size your ride” is my motto. If it is just me going somewhere, use the vehicle that is just enough to haul me. Likewise, with me and a little cargo. To fill the gap between car and bike, I’m considering a little scooter. Something that can let me feel better about darting down the hill for a quick run to the grocery store. Regardless, most of my trip’s down the hill are just me, a few clothes, and fewer excuses everyday.

Assembly Work From Home

Have you ever wondered what actually are the things that people assemble to earn money through their assembly work from home? And how do they earn by assembling these things? Truth to be told, they assemble things that company produces but not yet assembled. They are tasked by the companies that hire them to be the one to assemble their products. And these people are then paid by the companies for each product that they assemble properly through their assembly work from home jobs.

When I say properly, the products should be assembled following the assembly instruction guide that the companies give out to their hired home workers to do the assembly work from home of their products. And if you are interested to know what these products are about, there are just so many of them. These products can be found inside your homes, some of them you might even be using right now, or maybe even wearing at this very moment.

I am referring to jewelry assembly, women and men accessories like neckties, lapels, handbags, belts and so many other things that we use in our day to day activities. These products would also include things that would entertain and help us communicate with other people. These products are electronic assembled parts used in cell phones, FM radios, CD players, stereo components, and other electronic equipments.

Assembly work from home gives workers the freedom to choose what kind of work they would like to do that they are comfortable with. Companies know just too well that an assembly work from home worker can deliver a bigger number of quality products if they love what they are doing. In the directory list of companies offering assembly work from home job opportunities, each company clearly identifies what kind of product they are in and what kind of assembly job a person will work on if he or she will apply for assembly work from home.

In this regard, a person who is interested to work as an assembly work from home worker can immediately have a glimpse of what kind of work they will do in a particular company. And in this process, they can choose what kinds of work interest them most and apply for them. It is noted that most assembly work from home workers are comfortable with the kind of work they are in. We have received feedback from assembly work from home workers in electronics, jewelry, and other craft and nearly all are happy with the work they are in

Although there were some questions and inquiries regarding some unclear portions in their agreement with some companies, we have already touched base with subject companies and everything has been ironed out. Assembly work from home workers who have sent in their questions and queries have likewise sent us their note of thanks for helping them clarify with subject companies their concerns.

37 Inch TVs

If you are looking for a television for your bedroom, a 37 inch TV is just about the right size. It will not take up an entire wall, but it is large enough that you will be able to see the picture when relaxing in your bed.

Most televisions sold today are flat panel televisions. They can be either plasma televisions or LCD televisions. You will also see some sets advertised as LED televisions. These are essentially LCD televisions that rely on LEDs for the back light rather than relying on fluorescent lamps.

Plasma televisions offer better contrast and thus a clearer picture than LCD televisions. They have a shorter life expectancy and are more expensive than the other sets however.

LCD televisions are noted for lacking contrast. Many manufacturers are trying different ways to use the on board computer in the set to increase contrast. The results are better in some sets than they are in others.

Some LED televisions do offer better contrast than then plain LCD televisions. These sets are able to turn off groups of the LED lights behind the picture when a dark black is needed in the area. This technology can sometimes cause colors to appear less bright than they should. In addition, these televisions will cost more than the plain LCD sets. They offer the longest life as LED lamps are less likely to fade over time to the point that you will no longer be able to see the picture.

One problem that is common to all flat panel televisions, whether Plasma, LED or LCD is that the sound quality is not what you are accustomed to from your older set that used a picture tube. In order to fit the speakers into the thin screen, they must be extremely thin. This causes a loss of sound quality in the upper range of sound quality.

While most flat panel televisions are designed for use on a table top or wall   mounting , in the bedroom, you may want to consider a wall  mounting  bracket that allows you to adjust the viewing angle of the television. Some of the sets have a more limited viewing angle than others. If you try to watch television from the wrong angle the picture will fade out. The adjustable bracket will allow you to adjust the set for viewing while lying in bed or while sitting in a chair without fading of the picture.

While you could spend days reading reviews and narrowing down your choices for which television would work best in your situation, perhaps the best way to select a set is to visit a store that carries several of the televisions on your short list and compare them for yourself side by side. Just remember that the ambient lighting in your home will be very different than it is in the store. In addition, the sound in a large store is going to be different than it is in your bedroom.

Once you choose the 37 inch TV for your home, you will have a set that should last for many years.

Build New Muscle Quickly! – Dorian Yates HIT (High Intensity Training)

HIT (high intensity training)

H.I.T has been very popular among bodybuilders, especially Dorian Yates and Mike Mentzer. This typical method is pretty much in the gym and out within 45 minutes. This is a no nonsense method and should be done with high intensity. For example only 45 seconds rest between the sets and 2 minute breaks between each exercise. Dorian Yates became known for this method while his competitors used low intensity and high volume methods.

DY’s H.I.T was a bit different to others. While others used the 3 working set method but still high intensity, dorian would go even further to cut time out of his workouts and make it even more intense by using a 2 warm up set + 1 working set method. This means that the first warm-up set would be light, a set in which you can do 12 reps easily but not too easy. The second is ‘heavy’, this means a weight in which 8-12 reps becomes challenging. An example of this would be, if I were to Dumbbell press 40kg as my main working set I would use 35kg for the heavy WU. The 3rd set which would be the ‘working set’ is an all out set. EVERYTHING must go into this set. No thinking ” oh that will do, save some energy for next exercise or set ”. This is the purpose to H.I.T training. By going all out and giving it everything doing another set after it would be pointless because your muscle has been worked to its maximum there for cannot be worked anymore.

H.I.T should not be used all year around. 6 weeks of H.I.T then you will need drop in intensity. You body will hit a wall at a certain point and will need to recover, this is the maintenance phase in which you lower the weight and intensity for a week or so ready to hit it hard again. You must remember with H.I.T progression is key, even if its a 1.25kg progression each workout, it will build up!

The Reps

Now lets move on to the actual rep movement. When doing the bench press for example most people lower the bar at the speed of light and blast back up. There is 2 things wrong with this.

1. There is 3 parts to a rep.

2. Muscle fibers have not been worked to its potential.

Yes it’s true, a rep isn’t just the pushing, curling or pulling movement it has 2 other parts which are key to muscle growth. In my opinion the most important would be the negative part to a rep, e.g lowering of the bar to chest when doing bench press. Doing that in a controlled manner and slowly you will feel the stress your chest is under and it is backed more and more with scientific research that it actually stimulates the muscles MORE than that of a positive movement. ( the pressing movement of the bench press or pulling movement of a row )

The second part is the stationary part of the rep. When doing the bench press as an example again, when the bar is lowered to just above the chest that is when your chest is using the most muscle fibers to keep that weight up. Holding a pause at that point would put the muscle under additional stress and would work the muscle more. This technique can be used in most exercises.

Now by being enlightened by the 3 parts to a rep, you can now use all 3 while doing a rep to increase intensity. Maybe just adding the slow negative movement and then altering with the pause rep. This is what DY wants in the working set of his method, an all out push of that muscle. e.g just bench pressed 100kg for 8 reps and cannot push the bar up anymore, get your training partner to pull the bar up and do some negatives 2-3 at the end to kill it off, or maybe do some forced reps also. By combining these techniques you are on the course to destroy any muscle fibre in its way.

Drop sets

This technique is one of the best out there to increase intensity and possibly make you cry like a girl ( leg extensions! ) to do a drop set you must do a set at a specific weight then once that set is over the weight gets dropped and then straight back into it. 3-4 drop sets is ideal anymore the weight it’s lowered to would be too light and you will gain no benefit from it. e.g leg extensions: 90kg-75kg-60kg-45kg

FORM

Good form is vital when doing high intensity. Do not go into the gym and pick up a dumbbell that is too heavy for you just to get more intensity. This is a no go. You must find a weight in which you struggle but can still use good form. DY would always use good form no matter how hard the rep got. The most important thing in this is that you can feel your muscle working, the mind muscle connection. Once you can do this and progress you are on to gold.

The Routine

  • Day 1- Delts, traps, triceps, abs
  • Day 2- Back, rear delts
  • Day 3- Rest
  • Day 4- Chest, Biceps, Abs
  • Day 5- Rest day
  • Day 6- Quads, Hams, calves
  • Day 7- Rest

* – indicates Warm up set

Biceps

Incline dumbbell curls

* 1×10

1×6-8

EZ-curl barbell curls

* 1×10

1×6-8

Nautilus curls

* 1×10

1×6-8

Triceps

Triceps pushdown

* 1×15

* 1×12

1×8-10

Lying EZ-curl barbell extensions

* 1×12

1×8-10

Back & Read Delt

Hammer Strength pulldowns

* 1×15

* 1×12

1×8-10

Barbell rows

* 1×12

1×8-10

Hammer Strength one-arm rows

1×8-10

Cable rows (overhand grip)

1×8-10

Hammer Strength rear-delt machine

1×8-10

Bent-over dumbbell raises

1×8-10

Hyperextensions

1×10-12

Deadlifts

* 1×8

1×8

Chest

Incline barbell press

* 1×12

* 1×8

1×8

Hammer Strength seated bench presses

* 1×10

1×6-8

Incline dumbbell flyes

* 1×10

1×8

Cable crossovers

1×10-12

Shoulders

Smith machine presses

* 1×15

* 1×12

1×8-10

Seated laterals

* 1×12

1×8-10

One-arm cable laterals

* 1×20

1×8-10

Dumbbell Shrugs

* 1×12

1×10-12

Legs

Leg extensions

* 1×15

* 1×12

1×10-12

Leg presses

* 1×12

* 1×12

1×10-12

Hack squats

* 1×12

1×10-12

Lying leg curls

* 1×10-12

1×10-12

Stiff-legged deadlifts

1×8-10

Single-leg curls

1×8-10

Standing calf raises

* 1×10-12

1×10-12

Seated calf raises

1×8-10

The above routine does not need to be done exactly the same but you can see how he worked and how his sets got done. Incorporate his method into you’re routine about using his 2 warm up and 1 working set method. 3-5 exercises per body part.

Thanks for reading and remember doing all of this without the correct nutrition is worthless, nutrition must be spot on along with good training. Good luck!

Chocolate Bikini

The chocolate bikini is a new movement changing the way we think, feel and live during these warm summer days. The swimsuit was introduced in 1946, and is believed to be one of the first public swimming costumes in existence. Evidence produced from 300 A.D. Roman   mosaics , historians point to the swimsuit of choice for ancient Roman women. Who knew it went back so far and imagine the different level of stress that went with the public viewing of any women in this suit.

Today our society puts a much different demand on those who choose to wear a such swimwear. This is what created the demand for the chocolate bikini way of life. This is the belief that many women can and will look great while wearing a swimsuits. Chocolate is the key ingredient to make this happen.

It was once considered beautiful to have a full figure skin without sun exposure. It was a sign that you were rich having much food and no need to labor out of doors. It was a sign of success. Modern society looks at it in a very different light. To be thin and bronzed is the basic requirements of wearing such a garment. Fitness is also a requirement. How different the thoughts of modern society.

The most modern birth of the bikini back in 1946 was just one year after the end of World War 2. During that summer a French designer created and marketed the bikini swimsuit. The bikini began to be marketed and sold in the United States just one year after its introduction in France. The reaction to the swimsuit was good however, the sales were slow. It wasn’t until 1960 that sales soared to great numbers. Now a even bigger and more liberating movement is upon us, its the chocolate bikini.

Today with the increase in obesity the sales have shifted. With the many other options geared to flatter the different body types. A new movement is upon us changing the way we think about the bikini. A good word might be delicious as chocolate bikini surfaces the globe changing the way we think about swimwear and our body types.

Building Your Garden Tool Kit

Any time you start a new venture, you need to build a tool kit that contains all the most vital tools for the job. The same is true for a beginning gardener. You can go out and buy fancy “canned” tool kits in neat little cases, but the ideal way to buy a tool kit is by carefully selecting and buying each tool separately. That way you will ensure that the tools in your kit are comfortable, easy to use, and well built.

The Items in a Garden Tool Kit

By definition, a garden tool kit is a group of tools you’ll need to perform basic gardening tasks. A kit can be made up of hand tools, pruning tools, lawn care tools, or power tools. Although you’re eventually going to want to acquire tools in all of these categories, for starters you should concentrate on hand tools. They are the mainstays of gardening and include items like spades, trowels, hand-held rakes, garden forks, and hoes.

Many people think of shovels and spades as being the same thing, but they aren’t. Both are designed to perform specific tasks. You will find that a spade has a shorter handle attached to a flat, square-shaped blade. Its primary functions include edging garden beds, digging holes for planting, slicing sod, and adding fertilizer to soil. A shovel has a longer handle and a concave blade with a rounded tip. It is used to load or unload piles of sand, soil, or other materials so that they can be moved..

Garden trowels are important parts of your garden tool kit that are used for digging. They are ideal when planting bulbs and small plants. A trowel will consist of a short, sturdy handle which is attached to a cupped metal blade. You can get them with narrow or wide blades which serve different purposes. When you put your garden tool kit together, you should include both types of trowels.

Any good garden tool kit will include two types of rakes: a garden rake and a leaf rake. A garden rake is made of a steel bridge with either 12 or 14 tines attached to a long handle. You use it to break up dirt clods and remove debris from the soil before smoothing the ground in preparation for planting. The second type of rake is a leaf rake which, as its name says, is primarily used for raking leaves. Made of metal, bamboo, plastic, or rubber, a leaf rake can be used when gathering all sorts of lawn debris.

Two more items which are mainstays in any garden tool kit are a garden fork and a hoe. A garden fork is a very sturdy piece of equipment meant for hard work. With a heavy-duty handle and four strong, straight steel tines, it is ideal for turning and aerating soil as well and breaking up soil chunks and working fertilizer into the soil. A garden hoe is a simple tool consisting of a straight-edged square blade on a long wooden handle. It can be used to dig up weeds as well as for chopping up clumps of hard soil.

Over the years your collection of tools will grow, but the basic garden tool kit outlined above will be enough to give you a good start. The right tools will make all the difference in the speed and efficiency with which you perform tasks in your garden. Its hard work, but they can make you enjoy every minute of it.

Painter Contractor Job Description

A  painter  contractor is a professional who specializes in painting jobs. This profession does not only focus on painting as their name implies but their work encompasses the application of finishes on ceilings, walls and other surfaces which may require finishing. This means that their medium is not limited to paint but also includes others such as paper, vinyl and fabric. One other job that may be included in this description is the need to smooth over a particularly rough surface. Damage to the wall or ceiling made by nails and the scraping off of the older paint should be smoothed over before the application of the selected medium

Other Mediums

Other than paper, fabric and vinyl, there are also other mediums that the  painter  contractor might use to do the job. Varnishes and other similar forms of applications can be included in the mediums that this professional might use. Some wood and stone might also be included in their medium of choice, but this is unusual unless it is specified that he can actually do it. The kind of paint to be used is dependent on the type of surface it is to be applied on. Metal, wood, brick, concrete and other materials need different kinds of paint. Some types of paint do not adhere well to certain surfaces. In addition to knowing which paint to use on a given surface, the professional should also be skilled enough to determine the exact colors needed for the finishing job.

Purposes

There are practical reasons why this job is required for residential and commercial service. Aesthetics is one of the primary reasons why a paint job or a finishing job may be necessary for a house or a commercial building. Another valid reason for the use of these services is to ensure that the outer and inner surfaces of the establishment or domicile are protected. Paint and other mediums are a form of protection from the elements. The outer walls and even the roof will benefit from a good finishing job if done properly by the  painter  contractor. These are highly susceptible to rust or overall deterioration due to constant exposure to rain and other elements, but with paint, they can last longer. On the other hand, interior finishes benefit the home owner by protecting the walls and ceiling from possible damage done by cooking and other daily domestic chores.

Finishing touches such as designs and murals are also part of the job description. These are painted directly on the wall or ceiling as designs which are uniquely tailored to the home owner’s specifications. Some business establishments or stores also prefer to have their own personalized paint jobs which reflect their style. Wallpaper is another job that a  painter  contractor specializes in. Paper hanging is a detailed job that requires an eye for perfection. Before the paper can be hung, the surface needs to be cleaned from debris, oil and dirt, which can all impede the appearance of the result. An older application of wallpaper on the wall will need to be scraped off and cleaned adequately before the new application commences.