How To Make Homemade Carp Fishing Boilies For Winter To Defeat Readymade Baits – Part 1!

Improve your catches and think more like a sharper carper! This article offers expert tips to empower you to make superior homemade boilies which will catch big fish in winter and summer conditions! Designing homemade baits to beat readymade baits can be as simple or complex as you decide. Complex tips, bait secrets and some simpler guidance too are included here to get you catching more big fish this year; so read on now!

A bait as simple as bread paste obviously works and the old British record carp of 44 pounds was caught on this bait by Richard Walker. If you ask the question of why this bait actually attracted this fish and stimulated into feeding then you get a crucial list of properties, characteristics and factors of an all year round bait successful in all conditions! We can use all these things and more as a guide to designing better more successful, more functionally optimised boilies, pastes, stick and spod mixes, particle mixes, ground baits, pop up baits, pellets and so on!

The first point about bread is that it easily becomes solution in water so that carp can detect it using their multiple sensory systems. The second point is about the ingredients of bread and what these do to carp senses to stimulate them, both externally and internally when in solution. This subject is incredibly significant and is as thought provoking as how water reactive bread and its constituents are, and their impacts on fish senses, metabolism, digestion, energy release, mood altering capacities and much more besides!

Just to give you a hint as to what is coming up, I can make baits which last internally intact and incredibly functionally optimised and maximised for external and internal impacts on carp and water reactivity with zero heating, and this really means absolutely no cooking, heating, boiling or steaming, of any kind. These are truly optimised baits on a huge range of functional levels and vital nutritional and stimulatory factors!

These homemade baits need heating as they are designed to become exactly what is required in the water! No boiled, steamed, or heated bait that coagulates can be truly termed optimised for nutritional stimulation and such baits are very far from being optimised for functional performance. This is a huge reason why I do not use readymade baits; you can make homemade baits work better on a wide range of levels!

Based on the bread and bread paste example, perhaps think about bait from this starting point first. Bread is composed of a number of significantly soluble components which can easily be detected by carp in all water temperatures. The second point is that many of the constituents of bread contain components that carp are highly sensitive too and likely to be attracted towards and to actively feed on and repeatedly consume!

The bulk of wheat bread is based on wheat flour, and more particularly this form of wheat flour is termed as soft and is water soluble clouding up water even when mixed with cold water. This test is something for you to think about because if the baits you use do not easily have a significant impact on the water around then they will not be outstanding baits compared to what is actually possible to create and use!

Bread is an instant bait no matter which country it happens to be used in and in fact many of its constituents are used in many bait recipes around the world. The bulk of bread consists of soluble soft wheat flour. The commercial carp fishing bait industry uses a form of hard wheat, called durum wheat, which is commonly called semolina. This is a cheap binder and a supply of carbohydrate and energy to fish and makes baits functionally bind firmer and it is a relatively insoluble ingredient.

Semolina is a very cheap binder and a big part of how bait companies can make a large percentage of their profits and it is used in even the most advanced boilie recipes as valuable carbohydrate to assist carp to utilise protein rich ingredients and additives etc more completely, as well as adding other properties such as hardening and firming baits.

For over 30 years I have made homemade baits based on a variety of components and know that carbohydrate based boilies can be made to be very potent in many ways, but I would never now make a bait based on carbohydrates. Such baits often struggle in certain situations depending upon the water, but especially where baits with a richly stimulating nutritional profile are regularly introduced in volumes. To beat readymade baits it is far better to utilise various angles of attack within your bait design so you hit carp senses on multiple levels simultaneously so your baits are optimised for stimulation and maximised for functional potency in solution!

I do not suggest you start out making baits based on carbohydrates such as semolina or soft bread making wheat flour because this would not be the most optimised way at all, and certainly not the most maximised single angle or approach to designing homemade baits that you can expect to defeat the vast majority of more well designed readymade baits!

If I suggested to you that you make a paste using soft wheat flour as used in bread making (mixed with water only,) and compared this to a paste formed with semolina and water, then you will find that each ingredient has different functional properties. You probably cannot make a more simple bait than this, yet it will catch fish! Do not underestimate simple baits in their incredibly diverse forms!

Bread paste was used to balance the bread crust on the hook which Richard Walker used to catch his 44 pound record.

So if such a bait is so basic and simple how could this possibly catch the biggest carp caught in Britain? Part of the attraction and stimulation can be seen in recipes even today and include yeast, sugar, salt, oil with the bulk ingredient being soft soluble wheat flour. If you have had a varied fishing background then you will clearly recognize how fish are attracted to bread, including anything from roach and rudd, chub and dace, crucian carp and gold fish, koi carp, tench, bream, grass carp and of course Cyprinus carpio in the common, mirror and leather forms.

The basic need of fish is for vital energy. Fish require amino acids to sustain respiration and metabolism and also optimum digestive functioning and immunity and physiological balancing of cellular pressures and passage of amino acids, hormones, nutrients and waste products etc, and calories from bread is converted to sugar within the body of the fish for basic energy to fuel survival.

Fish and humans are hard wired to provide for vital energy for survival so this means that fish will readily feed on carbohydrates and sugars and oils of an amazing variety. Of course wheat flour does contain a low amount of amino acids so this can figure a little in the equation, but if I personally wish to supply water soluble feeding triggers and protein for nutrition I choose very specific ingredients and additives and extracts for this purpose for optimising my baits.

As you probably are well aware, the basic food of humans around the world is carbohydrate food. This is wheat and other such seeds and grains and even pulse and bean derived flours and meals etc in the western world, as well as parts of the Asia, the Americas and so on. Also other sources include maize, rice and many other far lesser known foods, including amaranth and even hemp.

I make this point because in some parts of the world indigenous peoples do not merely use conventional breads and flours. Some make bread using chick pea flour; some make bread or patties from other materials including whatever is available in the locality, maybe mountainous terrain or jungle or whatever thrives there in those conditions. This includes spirulina (blue green algae,) tiger nuts, soya beans and hemp among many others. Each forms of bread has its own stimulatory set of nutrients and bioactive factors etc and this is where the link with making carp baits really comes in!

We have the same basic forms of sensory systems in many ways as carp and literally carp as ancient teleost fish are a part of our ancient ancestor heritage. This is very interesting because many bait components we use very successfully are also much liked by humans. We happen to use water covered sensory receptor sites because we live in air and not in water any longer and our senses are massively less sensitive to substances mixed with air or water compared to many other creatures including carp and dogs for instance. The important point here is that we can leverage this acute sensitivity to our advantage in endless ways to catch many more fish!

Carp detect certain substances down to as little as a few parts in a billion in solution (mixed with water.) In my early days of carp fishing in the seventies I honed my skills by making homemade baits for small carp and crucian carp. The first baits I used were chopped worm, maggots, and of course I used white and brown breads in many ways. It was very obvious that if you mixed Marmite or honey or a chemical flavour with the bread then you could change catch results dramatically especially on days when conditions were not perfect.

I am talking about bread here to keep the principle simple which is that it is a substance containing minimal amounts of water soluble components to which carp are highly sensitive. Notice that both bread and Marmite contain salt. Of course I used sweetcorn too and like bread it is rich in easily digestible water soluble carbohydrates and also contains a percentage of protein, but the modern genotypes which are super sweet sweetcorn contain more sugars and really are truly enhanced by natural sugars stimulatory to carp.

To take advantage of the fact that carp are stimulated to sweetcorn you will find that mixing liquidised sweetcorn and bread to form a paste is an instant bait and presents both baits together in a unique form.

This idea is a very simple one but is the kind of creative innovation that will keep any homemade bait maker ahead of wary carp! It is in creative innovation, and the exploiting of the acute sensitivities of carp and knowledge of substances that trigger responses of carp, from initial gulping and filter feeding to intense repetitive consumption of bait that can be produced via your bait designs. Some bait designs exploit the fact that carp will test new objects and substances in their environment if not found to be a danger or a threat, and so massively over flavoured baits made with cheap carbohydrate ingredients have fooled many carp.

Richard Walker was a highly methodical, and extremely intelligent and innovative, creative angler. Bread is attractive to many species. Having read a chapter in a book from that time by Fred Taylor who was present at the capture of the record fish, he suggested that to catch carp you needed the following items: a strong rod and fixed spool real, a pair of rod rests, an audible bite indicator or foil or bread dough bobbin indicator, 10 pound line, a big sharp hook, a large landing net, and bread or boiled potato for bait. Carp were fished for using no weight on the line and the aim was to present as little resistance as possible to a wary feeding fish.

But what makes this interesting is that the bread offers soluble stimulation and attraction to the fish, as does the carbohydrate rich quite easily water soluble potato. eBook readers of mine have told me that in New Zealand potato flour, and potato starch are used as the bulk binders very successfully in carp baits there. This echoes my first special carp bait paste which included vanilla flavoured, sugar and milk powder enhanced custard powder which primarily was compose of maize starch.

I have made successful pastes that include bread of various kinds even today, and many modern types of bread made to be gluten free contain some very stimulating substances to exploit!

Wheat lectin, and wheat gluten intolerance and super sensitivity is a cause of many common diseases today and I gave up eating wheat bread about 6 years ago to avoid any possible further development of wheat gluten and wheat lectin intolerances and hyper sensitivities in future.

Fish are different to humans in that they have a varied diet including natural food items alongside carp baits and I am certain this is why carp diseases related to bad carp bait design are not as obvious as they could be. However the use of high oil pellets and oil glugging of boilies and use of very oily fish meals and high usage inclusions of bulk oils has definitely given many big fish liver problems and you can spot this by the bulges sticking out of the flanks of altogether far too many big carp today!

Many oils make baits almost useless in winter as they can literally become solid and lock up the soluble and digestible elements of your baits so choose wisely and use liquid lecithin alongside any lipids, oils, essential oils and other compounds etc that can be helpfully emulsified to make baits far more easily detected and digested!

Low oil use at perhaps a 5 percent inclusion is all that is required in very many carp bait recipes, depending on the oil and fat content of your various ingredients, especially the oily marine and fish ones for instance; so please do remember this when making your baits.

Fish health and future longevity is the responsibility of each and every angler. Of course by making health and natural balance orientated homemade baits, carp will have the health and vitality and energy to feed more, so you will catch far nicer fish more often now and in the future! Revealed in my unique readymade bait and homemade bait carp and catfish bait secrets ebooks is far more powerful information look up my unique website (Baitbigfish) and see my biography below for details of my ebooks deals right now!

By Tim Richardson.

Proper Maintenance for Asphalt Pavement

Asphalt is among the most popular commercial paving materials used today due to its water-resistance, flexibility, aesthetic appeal, and excellent adhesive abilities. All of these properties and more make asphalt pavement an asset that requires a structured level of preservation and care. Otherwise, it is prone to fading, damage, instability, and various other negative implications. With proper preventative maintenance, asphalt pavements can remain beautiful and functional for years. Not only is this ideal for investment purposes, but for liability as well. If you are an involved property owner, continue reading to learn the best methods for asphalt maintenance and care.

Asphalt Maintenance

Although pavement maintenance agendas will differ from property to property, the overall purpose of asphalt maintenance is to sustain its appeal and extend its life. Some paving maintenance tasks can be managed on your own or by an appointed staff, such as inspections and trash clearance; while others are best left in the hands of trained and equipped professionals. An ideal pavement maintenance should include basic tasks like regular assessments, sweeping, crack filling, pothole repair, periodic line striping, and most importantly, seal coating. Without a proper sealcoat, asphalt pavements will experience heightened wear and tear from traffic, weather, chemicals, salts, and more, which shortens their life and diminishes their aesthetic value.

Asphalt Seal Coating

Seal coats are emulsions that are brushed or sprayed onto pavements, providing a clear protective layer against moisture and the above-mentioned threats. There are several types of commercial sealcoats available on the market, but the most popular versions include fog seal, slurry seal, and chip seal emulsions. Some sealcoat products are water-based, which are easier and safer to spread. But there are also waterless versions that use organic or plant-based oils or hydrocarbon solvents instead.

Choosing to Seal Coat

If your asphalt pavement is old and in poor condition, it will not likely benefit from a new layer of seal coat. In some cases, it is more cost-effective to repair or replace deteriorated asphalt pavements instead. However, if your asphalt is in good condition, a periodic re-sealing can be a highly-beneficial maintenance decision. Talk to your trusted paving contractor for a professional recommendation of your asphalt’s maintenance and sealcoating schedule. They will know exactly what your property needs and at what intervals. The cost of having your asphalt seal-coated will depend on several factors, such as the square footage, the condition of pavement, and any additional surface applications needed.

How to Make Your Own Snoopy Costume For Halloween

Need a Snoopy Costume? Who wouldn’t love dressing up like a cute, adorable dog for Halloween? First of all, women love dogs. Secondly, if you can’t think of a dog costume all on your own, there are plenty of awesome, super-star dogs already out there to be inspired by. In fact, I will give you an example. How about Snoopy?

Everyone knows about Snoopy. He’s that great, lovable, non-speaking dog from the Charlie Brown cartoons that we’ve all come to love. And you’re in luck because it’s actually pretty easy to make a costume of Snoopy. So let’s get started.

First of all, you will need two white sheets. Don’t try to short cut it with pillow cases either. These sheets need to be at least twin size. line the two sheets up with one right next to the other. You should do this on the floor so that you can easily spread them out full length and flatten out all of the wrinkles. Also, be sure to situate them so that you can easily fold one over the other.

Next, take your hot-glue gun and make a hot-glue oval on the top one third of the sheet. Then, quickly fold it over onto the other sheet and press it down so that the glue bonds the two sheets together. This is going to be Snoopy’s face. Cut this part out and lay it to the side.

Next, make two boxing-glove sized circles with the rest of the sheet. Use the hot-glue to outline them the same way that you outlined Snoopy’s face. Fold the sheet over each circle and press down. These will be Snoopy’s paws – an intricate part of any Snoopy Halloween costume. Remember to make them larger enough so that you can put your hands in them. Cut them out and set to the side. I find that the girls love the paws even more if they are more on the large side.

Next, take your two cut circles and your large oval head and cut smaller half circle into the sides of each. The circle should cut into the hot-glue portion. These holes will be where you put the stuffing through to fluff up the pieces. They will also be where you put your hands through. Keep in mind that you will be wearing Snoopy’s head like a hat, so don’t make that hole so big that your head falls through it.

Lastly, stuff the three pieces. You may use anything you have available, but the best stuffing is any material that is fluffy and soft. Take a Sharpie marker and mark in the nose, eyes, spots, and claws. Be sure to put a big smiley face on Snoopy too. On Snoopy’s face, cut two slits near the hole for you head and find ribbon, string, or shoe laces to tie it down to your head.

Now you are ready to rock the town in your awesome Snoopy costume! So go grab Linus, Charlie Brown, Woodstock and the rest of the Peanuts gang and let’s all go find the Great Pumpkin together. Happy Halloween everybody.

Bathtub Faucet Repair Tips and Techniques

Did you know that you can fix a leaking shower faucet and save hundreds of gallons of water a year? Most people just think of a dripping faucet as an annoyance and do not realize how much precious water is being wasted one drop at a time. The good news is that almost anyone with a few basic hand tools can learn how to fix most dripping faucets.

Let's start with the basics. Faucets have one primary purpose, to allow the water in your pipes to be used in a controlled manner. This means that they have to open to allow water out of the pipes and close to keep water in the pipes. Not rocket science, right? The closing part is what we want to concentrate on here.

There Are Two Basic Faucet Designs

Faucets drip when they fail to completely trap the water in the pipes. Most faucets use one of two basic methods to stop the water flow. Some, primarily older designs, use rubber or neoprene washers which tighten against a "seat" and block the flow of water. Drips from these faucets are addressed by replacing the washers and / or seats. We'll talk about how to do that in a minute. Most other faucet designs involve some sort of cartridge. Some people call these "washerless" faucets. Repairing newer style water faucets like these usually involves replacing the cartridge (s).

Washers And Seats

Older faucet designs often use washers to block the water and keep it in the pipes. Tightening the handle compresses the washer against a "seat" and seals the opening, thus stopping the water flow. If you need to do a bathtub faucet repair on a three handle wall faucet you probably have this type. You will also run into this style if you need to fix a leaking shower faucet hat has two handles. Many sink and lavatory faucets also use washers. One way to tell whether or not your faucets use washers is to see if the handle gets harder to turn as you turn it off. If turning it really tight stops the drip, this probably, but not always, means that you have washers. If you have a dripping faucet that has washers, the basic repair process is very similar whether you need to know how to repair a shower faucet, repair a leaking tub faucet or fix a dripping sink faucet. There is, however, one important difference.

Bathtub Faucet Repair

The one critical thing to remember when fixing a leaky bathtub faucet is that you will have to turn the water off to the entire house before removing any parts other than the outer trim pieces. If you're not sure which pieces are trim, just turn the water off first just in case. Once you have turned off the main water to the house you can begin taking things apart. There are lots of different brands and designs of faucets out there and they all come apart a little differently, so you will have to sort of feel your way through.

Removing The Trim

The first step is to remove the handles. This is usually done by removing a cap to expose the handle screw and then removing the screw. Next, remove the handle. This may require a little finesse, as the handles sometimes get stuck in place. One trick is to place the handles of a pair of channel lock pliers behind the valve handle, one on each side, and tap evenly on the handle to nudge it loose. If this does not work you can buy a special tool to remove handles but these tools are sometimes hard to find and usually a little patience is all you need to do the trick.

After he handles are off, there is usually some sort of sleeve over the stem itself. This typically has to come off too. Once again, there are many different configurations. One popular design uses threaded plastic tubes to connect the trim sleeve with the valve. Other types have the sleeve threaded directly onto the valve. You will have to figure this step out before you can proceed. If you can determine what brand valve you have there is a good chance of finding instructions on-line.

Now For The Root Of The Problem

OK, so you have removed both the handles and any remaining trim sleeve from the valve. Now you are ready to get to the root of the problem, your valve stem. The washer is almost always at the other end of the valve stem from the handle. Usually the stem is threaded into the valve body and you will just need to unscrew it to remove it. Here's a tip. Stick the handle back on for a second and open the valve half way. This relieves pressure on the stem and makes it easier to unscrew. Now you just need to make sure you are loosing the correct nut.

Lots of valves have a packing nut around the stem. It is usually a little smaller and just in front of the actual connection with the valve body. The packing nut's purpose is to squeeze some special packing material around the stem to prevent water from leaking around the stem when the valve is in use. Loosening the packing nut will not help you, you need to get your wrench on the actual connection to the valve body. By the way, a deep socket is often the only tool that will work to remove the valve stem.

Removal The Valve Stem

The easiest way to make sure you have the correct nut is to see if there is a gap opening up between the nut and the valve body as you loosen the nut. The valve stem itself will also usually turn when you have the right one. If you have loosened the packing nut by mistake, do not worry, you will adjust it before you are finished anyway. Go ahead and remove both stems and keep up with which one is which, it matters on many valves.

After you have the stems out you should be able to find the washer on the "inside" end. If it is nicknamed, torn or brittle it is likely the cause of your drip. Even if it looks brand new, go ahead and replace it. You've already come this far. You can get replacement washers at almost any hardware store. Sometimes you may want to replace the whole stem, especially if the handle end is stripped out. It's best to just take the stem with you to the store and see if you can match it up. Most Do It Yourself stores have replacement stems for many popular brands. If your valve has a center diverter valve to switch the waterfrom the tub spout to the shower head the same process applications. Many times it is easier to replace the diverter stem than to repair it. This really depends on the design of the stem.

How Are Your Seats?

One more thing to check is the seats. These are the part of the valve body that the washer tightens up against stop the water flow. If you can get your finger inside the valve, feel of the seats and see if they feel rough. If so, it would be best to replace them if you can get them out. The inside of the seats, which is where the water flows through when the valve is open, usually have either a hex or square recess. Special seat wrenches are used to remove the seats. You can usually get these wrenches at the same place you get the other parts and they're not expensive. You just stick the wrench through the seat and unscrew it. The replacement seats screw back in the same way, just put a little pipe dope on the threads before you install it.

Put It All Back Together

Once you've figured out what needs to be replaced and have done that, you just need to put everything back together. If your valve has packing nuts do not put the trim back on until you have turned the water back on. Once the water is on, go ahead and stick the handle on for a second and open the valve. Make sure no water is leaking around the stem. If it is leaking, with the handle opened half way, snug down the packing nut until the leak stops. Easy does it. If you get it too tight the handle will be hard to turn. Now finish installing the trim pieces and you are done.

Repairing Newer Style Water Faucets

If you have a newer, "washerless" type valve the repair process is similar, but usually easier. Many of these type valves use a self contained cartridge. If the valve starts to drip, just replace the cartridge and you're done. You still need to turn the water off and remove the handles and trim. The cartridge is usually held in place by a retaining nut on the valve body or, in the case of most Moen valves, by a retaining clip. Simply remove the cartridge and put another one in it's place. If your hot and cold are back when you finish, turn the water back off, pull the cartridge back out, turn it over 180 degrees and re-install it.

Delta Style Valves

One other common design that is considered "washerless" was made famous by Delta and copied by several other makers. It uses little "cup" seals that fit over springs recessed in the back of the valve body. The springs press these "seals" against the cartridge and regulate the flow through little tapered openings in the cartridge. If you have one of these and it's dripping, changing these springs and seals will usually correct it. Here's a tip. Once you have the cartridge out of the way, insert a phillips screwdriver into the seal and pop both the seal and spring out. Stick the new ones on the end of the screwdriver to help guide them into place. This is especially helpful if you do not have long slender fingers.

Delta, and a few imitators, also have a faucet design that uses a ball instead of a cartridge. This is not as common in tub or shower valves but there are plenty of them out there. The springs and seals are the same but there are lots more o-rings an parts to deal with. The good news is that these parts are readily available. While it's a little more complicated than learning how to repair a Moen kitchen faucet, which is a piece of cake, it is still easier than working with most washer type faucets.

These Techniques Work In The Kitchen Too

Armed with the knowledge you've gained in this article you now not only know how to repair a shower faucet and to repair a leaking tub faucet, but you can apply these skills to many other faucets as well. After fixing a leaky bathtub faucet, stopping a dripping outside hose faucet will be a breeze. The techniques that you will use to complete a "washerless" bathtub faucet repair can be used when repairing new style water faucets of all kinds. Whether you have an old dripping tub faucet or a newer kitchen faucet that just will not quite shut off you can now fix it. So put these new skills to use, roll up your sleeves and stop that drip!

Copyright 2008 Bryan Stevens

How a Business Can Benefit From the Internet

With today’s advances in technologies and the rapid growth of the Internet having an online presence for a business is very beneficial. A business can benefit in many ways from owning its own Web site. Only a few years ago, if a customer wanted to do business with a specific company he or she would have to physically go to the business or, in less common cases, they could order from a catalog. The development of Internet technologies has created an environment where collaborating with clients, communicating with employees, marketing, and training have evolved to reach a broader group of clients in a more efficient manner.

With development and growth of Internet search engines, the way people find businesses has changed a great deal in the past few years. Someone in need of a product or service in a geographical area could go on the Internet and search for what they were inquiring about. The Internet search would give the person a list of Web sites to choose from. For example; if he or she were in need of a plumber they would use the Internet to search for a plumber in their city. In the search results he or she would find a plumber’s Web site and obtain their telephone number. The use of paper-back phone books to find businesses is slowly disappearing.

Internet technologies and Web pages also help businesses with when and where they can sell their products. With the recent development of online shopping Web sites, also known as ecommerce sites, companies are able to sell products anytime and from anywhere over the internet. The need for the old brick and mortar store is not always necessary. For example; if he or she wanted to buy a certain book they could go to the book store and buy it. With the Internet and shopping Web sites, he or she could find the book virtually and have it mailed to their house. Another type of shopping Web site is the auction site. An auction site allows an individual to bid on something over a period of time, normally for a reduced price. Having an online shopping Web site will greatly benefit a business when selling products, whether that is through an on-line store or through an auction site.

Marketing and advertising a business has changed recently because of the Internet. The traditional methods of advertising a product or service was usually done through printed ads and radio commercials. With the Internet, companies are advertising their products and services on popular Web sites. The more popular a Web page, the higher the charge for advertising space. Other Internet advertising options allow a company to advertise at specific times and specific geographic regions. Internet marketing can expand business advertising to the entire world.

Another great Internet based advertising system is social media. Social media Web sites could be good for a business by linking together groups and other businesses to share information. This can drive new clients to a business. People share information about a product they like and others share it. This type of advertising spreads quickly and can benefit a business.

The Internet and use of a company Web site helps a business communicate. A company can easily communicate with its clients and employees through the use of Internet technologies; such as, email, Web site content, and help forums. If he or she has a question about a product they could easily send the company a message through the help forum or email portal on the Web site. Business communications have changed with the use of online collaboration tools. Using the Internet, a sales person can have access to company contact lists, documents, and calendars that are embedded into the company Web site.

Employee information and training has changed with the use of the Internet. A company can have training modules built into their Web site for initial and recurring employee training sessions. This saves the company time and money. Communicating with employees by using email is also helpful to a business. Policy changes and other information can easily be sent throughout a business by using electronic communication. When a business uses technologies and electronic communication methods it saves money by not wasting paper.

The next generation of Internet technologies and Web sites are the mobile type. Businesses that have traveling sales people need access to company resources using smaller handheld devices. The Web applications made for mobile devices are smaller, fast loading, and do not rely on heavy graphics. The computer as we know it is changing into a smaller, hand held, mobile device. These smaller devices help a business become mobile. Imagine being a traveling business person and having to go through airport security everyday with a large laptop and all its equipment. Now imagine just carrying a handheld device and how much easier it becomes.

Internet technologies and the use of business Web sites are constantly changing and evolving. When a company can adapt and change with the technologies it will benefit because, using quick and effective communicating methods, marketing and advertising strategies, and efficient customer service systems allows a business to move from a brick and mortar store to a potentially global business. Today, if a business does not evolve and keep up with the technology, it will be left behind.

Are There Any Apartments in Houston Which Will Consider a Broken Lease?

When renting an apartment in Houston TX, one has to go through a few verification and qualifying checks that the apartments demand. One of these is off course a check on their rental history. This check is designed to uncover any broken leases that the applicant might have. Unlike bad credit which some apartments can ignore and decide to work with you, a broken lease is considered especially serious and most complexes will turn you down. But are there apartments in Houston that are considerate to people with prior broken agreements with other apartments?

Searching for apartments

Houston has thousands of new vacant apartment units every single day. These are located all over the city but if you are looking for second chance apartments, you might want to look in places like:

  • Downtown Houston
  • The Heights Section
  • Alief
  • Westchase
  • Greenspoint
  • Sharpstown

While it is true that these areas do harbor renters that can approve you despite of a prior rental issues with previous apartments, there are also a few conditions you must meet:

1. You must have a job

2. You must earn at least 3 times the amount of the rent

The first strategy in looking for such apartments is off course to leverage the power of the Internet. Typing broken lease apartments + your zip code will suffice. The sheer size of Houston makes it uneconomical and thoroughly inefficient to try and look for second chance apartments by driving around. That can also be a very costly and thoroughly frustrating ordeal.

Another strategy would be to retain the services of apartment locators. Sometimes these are not very helpful but there are a few out there that understand the plight of people who have been in these types of straits.


Unfortunately, sometimes the apartments that approve despite of a broken lease may be in seedy sections of Houston. But a careful search can unearth some in noteworthy sections of town. For instance, there are many second chance apartments in Westchase District, in the Southwest,close to the Galleria area. This is an optimum area with numerous shopping, and job opportunities. Westchase also has a very reasonable bus route.

Other places such as the Greenspoint area also promise apartments that are willing to work with applicants with prior rental issues. The Greenspoint area is also an excellent place to live, shop, work and go to school. Its close proximity to the airport also affords the locality good policing and as such crime is relatively well contained.

No More Exercises to Reduce Tummy Fat – A Better Way

Exercises to reduce tummy fat fast don’t have to be torture sessions where you wonder if you’re going to live through it! For centuries Asian women have mastered being able to get a flat stomach and skinny waist without starving themselves and without long workouts. Let’s take a look at just one of their methods and how you can use it to get the body of your dreams faster than you think.

No More Exercises to Reduce Tummy Fat – A Better Way

Let’s just get this right out of the way now: You will NOT be doing any sit-ups or crunches, I promise.:)

I can’t remember ever seeing my Chinese Mother or Grandmother ever lying on the floor trying to touch their elbows to their knees…instead they would do simpler techniques to maintain their size-2 tiny waists.

One of these ways is found right in your bathtub…

The Magic Properties and an Epsom Salt Bath

Epsom salts are named for the mineral rich waters of a village in England called “Epsom”, where they were known at least as far back as Shakespeare’s day. The salts were quickly found to be effective for treating the aches and pains our bodies often go through, along with removing toxins from our system which then resulted in weight loss!

Toxins can take many forms, including certain fat compounds, and if they are blocked or not being released for whatever reason they will accumulate into a topical layer of fat that many people call cellulite.

The reason Asian women take Epsom salt baths is because when combined with hot water the salt can draw toxins out of the body at a tremendous rate. This works by hot water infused with Epsom slat bringing toxins out of the body to the skin surface, while the water cools it and then washes it away.

When Epsom salt is absorbed through the skin in a bath it also sedates the nervous system, reduces swelling, relaxes muscles, is a natural emollient, exfoliate, and much more!

Below is the actual Epsom salt Detox bath recipe that all the Women in my family have used forever:

– 1 x Cup Epsom salts

– A handful of sea salt

– 2 x Tablespoons of bath oil

Be sure to pour all of the ingredients into the tub while the tub is filling up because Epsom salt gets lumpy when exposed to wet bathroom air. For a typical bathtub use about 1 cup of salt.

Soak for 20 minutes or so, and let your mind relax and unwind.

The Bottom Line is You Must Take Action

I hear a lot of people telling me they’re sick of the latest diet programs on the market these days, where you’re either STARVING or trying to live through BRUTAL workouts to drop weight. Instead…

Headphone Guide – Understanding Different Designs and Cords

Buying headphones can be a confusing decision with so many kinds to choose from, let alone understand. If you’ve ever wondered at some of the terms used or what the advantages of each type are, read on.

We’ll get into discussion of major headphone designs and even cord information below, but first there are two items that bear mentioning to better understand what follows. First, since air pressure plays a big role in how we hear, a headphone’s seal is important in the way they will sound. Second, headphones at the most fundamental level come in two designs: open and closed. What this means essentially is that a headphone is either sealed off from the outside or vented to allow air (and sound) to pass freely.

Open vs. Closed Design

Generally open headphone designs are described as being more “natural” sounding, but this can come with drawbacks. Everything going on in the room around you will intrude on your music. This can occasionally be useful, but is often a hindrance that requires turning the volume up higher. Also, your music leaks out just as easily, which can bother others nearby if the area is otherwise quiet.

Closed headphones on the other hand offer a much more intimate listening experience and are nearly silent to those around you. The one disadvantage compared to open designs is that the bass can be muddier or certain other sound characteristics overly pronounced.



These are among the most common headphones in the mass market, largely due to their portability. They are light, easy to shove in a pocket, and fit right in your ear. Earbuds are inexpensive and easy to find in any store that sells electronics.

Being this small can come with a cost. The downside of earbuds is that they lack the driver size and the isolation to produce a high-quality listening experience. Models have varied slightly in size and shape attempting to improve upon this dilemma, but ultimately it is what it is. A common price ranges for this type is $10-50.


Earcup designs are the other most common type of headphone. Many of the behind-the-head style headphones you see are great examples. These are larger than earbuds, and work by sitting on the ear rather than in it. This larger design allows for a fuller range of sound and better power handling, but still lacks much of a seal between the ear and headphone. The result is the loss of detail and bass compared to other types. Still, this design is also inexpensive and easy to find, and still pretty portable. Typical price range for this type: $15-50.

Supra Aural

Supra aural headphones are larger still from the earcup design. They work again by sitting on the ear, but cover the entire ear and create a better seal by contact pressure (produced by the headband). This pressure can sometimes be uncomfortable for long listening sessions.

Overall range and detail are improved in this design from earcups, but at the cost of portability. These tend to be bulkier and heavier, but lighter than the circum aural designs we’ll discuss in a minute. Essentially, this type of headphone tries to play the middle ground between earcups and full-size headphones. Even in a closed design, however, supra aural headphones will leak sound. These tend to range from $15-100.

Circum Aural

These are full-size headphones and are as un-portable as they come. They are usually the heaviest and bulkiest type of headphone, but offer several advantages.

Because the pads go around the ear, they are typically more comfortable. This method also creates the best seal you’ll get other than canalphones, resulting in the ideal dynamic range. Headphones of this size often have large drivers, making them efficient and able to handle more power without distortion. The size, too, affects range in a positive way.

Open designs will still leak music or let ambience in, but the area between driver and ear still benefits from the seal. Closed circum aural headphones are ideal in this sense, being nearly silent to anyone nearby and blocking out a great deal of outside noise. Because those that purchase this style of headphone are often audio enthusiasts, build quality and price reflect this niche market. Prices tend to vary from $25-500, though it’s not unheard of to see circum aural headphones at $1000 or more.

Canalphones or In-Ear-Monitors (IEMs)

These are the newest style of headphone, aiming to bridge the gap between portability and sound quality. They are as small as earbuds and also go in the ear, but unlike earbuds they go into the ear canal like earplugs. This takes some getting used to for some users.

The major advantage of being inserted into the ear canal is isolation. Canalphones offer all the audible advantages circum aural designs have due to their seal, and can often block out even more outside noise. Because of both the seal and the proximity to the inner ear, dynamic range is dramatically improved compared to earbuds. The user will not have to turn the volume up as high and will also appreciate a much greater level of detail in listening as a result.

Though a bit more expensive, canalphones will outperform earbuds sonically in every way, and can prove to be just as portable. Cheaper models are in the same general price range as earbuds and earcup headphones. The higher end canalphones, though, can be just as costly as full-size headphones.



There are different cord designs employed with headphones as well. The simplest distinction to make is the general shape the cord makes-in most cases a “Y” or “J”. “Y” cords resemble the letter, wherein a single strand comes from the plug end and splits off to connect to each earcup. The “J” design, as it applies to earbuds and canalphones, starts with a singular strand and splits off. The difference from the “Y” cord is in that one side is longer than the other, meant to be wrapped around the back of the head and then go to the ear. This relieves some cord tension and makes it harder for the earphone on that side to be pulled out, however it can also be cumbersome. The third major configuration in cords is a straight cord, meaning it comes from the plug all the way up to what is usually the left earphone. It connects there, and the wire for the right side feeds internally through the headband. This is nice in that externally there is only one wire to deal with.

Many high-end headphones will use the “Y” cord rather than the straight design so that each side is exactly equal length. At this level, there is a degree of pickiness that insists each side is sonically matched as closely as possible.

Balanced and Unbalanced Cord Setups

You may also hear certain headphones being referred to as “balanced”. On a regular cord, the positive line is carried up each side, but one way or another the ground wire becomes shared. Even on a “Y” design where each side has its own wire, the grounds join at the end where the wire terminates into the plug. A balanced design essentially means that each side is completely separate, having its own positive and negative wire that never touch the other side. Doing this requires each side have its own plug at the end, which of course means you’d need a special output device to connect the headphones. Most devices use a stereo plug, whether 1/4″ or 1/8″.

Why, you ask, would someone want a completely separate connection? No matter how clean the connection is and how high quality the wire transmitting the signal, two ground signals crossing can always create interference or noise. This can be difficult to hear, which is why usually only extremely high-end headphones appear in a balanced design. Again, at that level the sensitivity of the headphones themselves and the ears of the audiophile may benefit from a design that minimizes any sort of audible noise whatsoever.

Does using a balanced cord design make a big enough difference to bother? This is a topic of debate among audiophiles. Most would agree the difference is small, but it remains a matter of opinion on how important that small difference is.

OFC and 7N Cables

OFC stands for oxygen-free copper. Cheaper copper wires are more prone to interactivity that can cause noise in the signal. A hiss or small levels of distortion are sometimes observed when using such cables. Higher end cables minimize this interference for the cleanest signal transmission.

Some of the highest end cables are called “seven 9’s”, or 7N cables. This refers to the number of decimal places in the oxygen-free rating. This appears as 99.9999999% oxygen-free. No cable can claim to be 100% free of anything that would cause interference, but these cables as you’d guess are as close as audibly possible.

On some higher end headphone models users claim that replacing the stock cables with expensive aftermarket ones improves sound quality notably. This, too, is a topic of heavy debate in the audiophile community. Many users insist that silver lined cords have a very different sound, for example, than copper or gold-tipped wires. Others maintain that’s all in people’s heads. What everyone does agree on is the importance of oxygen-free copper.

Gold-Tipped Plugs – What’s That About?

Gold itself is less conducive than copper, which is one of the reasons (the other being price) that the wires themselves are not gold. So then why all the fuss about gold-tipped plugs and adapters? Gold does not tarnish or corrode like copper does, so a partially gold connector or adapter is another way to ensure the cleanest signal transmission over time.

Since the plug of a wire is the only part that contacts air and therefore is susceptible to corrosion, it’s the only part that benefits from a gold mixture. Stay away from any expensive cables that claim the whole wire is gold or partially so-you’re just throwing your money away for a gimmick.


So that’s about it. Hopefully with all this in mind the questions in headphone buying will be a bit easier to understand. There are of course still other factors in any audio equipment to consider. This should get you started at least and on your way to making an informed decision when mulling over which pair of headphones are right for you.

Do Morning Line Systems For Horse Racing Handicapping Really Work

We live in an instant, throw away, disposable, fast, drive-through economy and that has affected almost all human endeavors, including how people want to handicap horse races. Looking for a fast horse racing system, many people turn to the numerous morning line methods that have been around for a long time.

The lure of a quick way to pick winners is nothing new and that is why the morning line is so enticing. A public handicapper who is at the track every day (it’s his or her job) looks at every horse on the program and gives what he or she thinks are the odds the public will place on the horse before post time. But just how accurate are those predictions and what other factors come into play?

First of all, a track handicapper is an employee of the race track and the track needs people to buy and race horses at the track. So keeping the owners happy is of paramount importance. Track handicappers regularly place lower odds on horses so as not to offend the owners. Now, I’m not talking about horses that have a chance to win, those horses usually get the odds they deserve, but I am talking about horses that have no chance to win and it is quite obvious. If a horse should be at 100-1, no track handicapper will put the runner at those odds.

The reason is two-fold, first of all, what if the horse does win? The handicapper is going to look pretty foolish and will never hear the end of it. Secondly, someone is paying to keep the horse at the track and race it. The last thing that the race track wants is to insult the owner or trainer or to risk them moving their horses to another venue. So horses at 10-1 or 20-1 may actually rate those odds or may be a lot worse.

A good long shot handicapping system that looks at those horses and digs deeper for other factors to turn up a few roses amongst all the thorns is great, but a quick morning line system won’t do that.

Another problem with the morning line system is that you are depending upon one person, whom you probably don’t even know, to determine odds on the runners. If the track handicapper has a bad day or week, you lose because of it. What may be even worse is that they may have several people doing that job and one may be good while the other may be a stinker. When I worked in publicity at a track, my boss and I used to take turns doing the morning line and competed against each other to see who could do the best job.

That’s good for the players, but what if the person doing it is angry at the track? He or she may give a lousy line out of spite. The point I am making is that those morning line betting systems may work now and then, but they will only be as consistent as some stranger whom you are depending upon to handicap the races. That’s the reason that for as long as those morning line systems have been around, they still don’t show a consistent profit and should only be used for a quick method, light betting, and recreation.

Copper Pricing Indexes – Camden and COMEX

Copper, a favorite of the wire and cable industry, possesses excellent electrical conductivity and finds widespread use as an electrical conductor in everyday wire and cable products. Copper has even become the world’s third most widely used metal. Due to a number of influencing factors, including demand, the price of copper has risen dramatically over the past few years.

Concerns with copper are not isolated to the U.S., but have developed into an international concern across a number of markets. Since the price of copper directly affects the price of electrical wire and cable, those involved in the industry, suppliers and customers alike, are affected by any fluctuation in copper prices.

In order to closely follow changes, the wire and cable industry looks to outside sources for accurate pricing information. The two primary indexes used in determining the cost of copper industry have been the COMEX Copper Index and the Omega-Camden Copper Index. Although the two differ slightly, both indexes continually remain reliable resources.

You may have read about COMEX copper prices in national publications such as the New York Times or American Metal Market. Lines like, “Copper prices rise on the COMEX Division of the Mercantile Exchange,” are not uncommon. The COMEX (Commodities Exchange) draws public attention as a division of the New York Mercantile Exchange (NYMEX), which is a worldwide physical commodity futures exchange. In the COMEX Division, metals like gold, silver and high-grade copper futures are traded.

COMEX manages the trading of copper as a commodity with commercial value by means of a daily settlement price. The prices are recorded on the COMEX Copper Index, which keeps track of all settlement prices. Copper futures on the COMEX Division are used by copper market participants for investment purposes. The future prices listed on the index reflect where copper prices appear to be headed based on the present opinion of the marketplace. The opinions and direction of the prices on the index can change abruptly.

Like the COMEX Copper Index, the Omega-Camden Copper Index plays a role in determining the cost of copper in the wire and cable industry. The Omega-Camden copper base, formerly known as the Camden copper base, is a point of reference for wire and cable prices. The Omega-Camden Index records and measures whether copper prices are increasing or decreasing. The Omega-Camden copper index is supplied by International Wire (IMG), whose products include a broad range of copper wire.

Unlike the daily changes of the COMEX Copper Index, the Omega-Camden Index is only updated twice a month. Another difference is that prices on the Omega-Camden copper index take into consideration transportation costs. The Omega-Camden base may be fifteen to twenty cents higher per pound than COMEX prices as a result of the added cost. COMEX’s copper price reflects only the price as produced at the mine. It does not include additional production costs.

With the current volatility of prices, the COMEX and Omega-Camden Copper Indexes have become valuable tools to the wire and cable industry. COMEX is helpful because it is updated on a daily basis and predicts future prices. The Omega-Camden Index is useful because it considers added costs. Both provide a deeper understanding of one of the industry’s biggest concerns – the ever-fluctuating cost of copper.

55 Years Old – Don’t Buy A House

If you have owned a house and paid off the mortgage over the years you know the first 10 years is almost all interest payments with very little equity.

There is nothing wrong with buying a house as long as you can qualify. That means a good down payment and a steady job. None of that no-down-payment nonsense. The buyer must be serious about making those monthly mortgage payments and have a good job. Banks are checking these days.

The financial community in the recent past has been required to make mortgages for those who did not qualify with no down payments and had no serious intention of paying if it became economically uncomfortable. It is too easy to walk away.

The true cost of home ownership is not just the monthly mortgage payment. In a new house all the appliances, plumbing, roof, pool equipment, window frames, etc., etc., everything has an estimated life expectancy after which they need to be replaced.

Buying an older home means all of the above will occur sooner. Replace or repair can be expensive.

The true cost of keeping the house is the mortgage payment plus upkeep. Oh and let’s not forget taxes. Then there is a little thing called insurance that is required by the mortgage holder.

The industry calls it PITI = principle, interest, taxes and insurance. Depending upon the length of time of the mortgage and whatever your down payment was it normally comes out 10% annually of the selling price divided by 12 or 1% of the selling price each month.

If the house cost $200,000 that figures about or close to $2,000 per month.

If you are 55 years old do you want to take on that obligation? Wouldn’t it be smarter to rent? If the same quality home can be rented for $1,200 per month the renter could save the difference of $800 each month and in 10 years at retirement have $96,000 plus interest. I can guarantee he would not have that in home equity if he bought the house when he was 55.

Furthermore renters pay much less for rental insurance and have the ability to move to a new location any time. Renters do not have to put on a new roof or replace an old hot water heater. No major upkeep out of pocket expense.

How about a 6 month rental in Canada for the Summer and 6 months in Florida, Mexico or Dominican Republic for the Winter? The only extra would be travel expenses.

With so many rentals available the foreclosure prices are not yet a great buy. If a person wishes to buy there are yet about 4,000,000 more distressed properties to hit the market in the next 2 years. Prices will be even lower than today.

Do the numbers before you buy.

The Importance of Window Treatments

Anyone will have you know that the most noticeable part of the room are the windows and so a lot of care should be out into window treatments. Designers rely on windows to create the correct brightness factor for the room – an important part in interior decoration and are thus the focal point when it comes to designing the interior of any room particularly the living room.

The furniture in the room is selected and placed in accordance with the windows and the window coverings determine the kind of upholstery the furniture will have. treatment entails decorating the window with some form of curtains, blinds or shutters. These window must be carefully chosen in order to complement the room as well as the window.

Good window treatments should be designed to suit not only the windows but they should blend with the rest of the d├ęcor of the room and create a sense of interweaved design. A badly chosen and placed window treatment could stand out like an eye sore in an otherwise attractive room.

Before choosing the shades or shutters or any kind of treatment for the window go through the entire range of available window treatments in the market. Among the best manufacturers of customized window coverings are Hunter Douglas. They manufacture the entire range of window coverings from curtains to bamboo blinds. Their Roman shades, Plantation shutters, vertical blinds, Venetian blinds and window shades contain hundreds of designs that anyone can find exactly what they are looking for to decorate their windows.

Window treatments should facilitate looking out of the window from within the room and prevent or hamper looking inside the room. This can be achieved by the proper shades, coverings and shutters. While ventilation is unaffected the view from the window is enhanced while privacy is maintained. Choosing the right blinds for the purpose will go a long way in decorating the inside of the house while maintaining privacy as well. The kind of blinds chosen for privacy will depend on the kind of house and where the window is facing.

If you live in a flat with a window facing the other flat you will need to have blinds that will completely block out any view from the outside. However, if you are in a country house with the windows facing the open vastness of the countryside you may want to have a window treatment that will permit a lot of vision from inside as well as there will be very few instances of someone looking in from outside.

Before you go out to get yourself some quality window treatment you should take some time and sit back and decide the kind of treatments you would really like to have for the room. try and visualize the window with the treatments you have reviewed in magazines and then try to customize them with what you have in mind. Window treatments can be very expensive and this is an investment you may not be able to do every couple of months. So take your time and decide what you really want and then explore the market. Try to find an online store with a lot of pictures and a wide range of products that you an use to get exactly what it is you want for your window treatments.

My Vaginal Opening Feels Rough – Could it Be a Yeast Infection? Discover the Answer in 15 Minutes

Surprisingly, many women are asking this question. Why is this such a common question? 75% of all women suffer from vaginal yeast infections and they’re searching for answers and solutions to the problem.

The answer to the question lies in understanding the symptoms and effects that a yeast infection have on the female body. Symptoms include: itchiness or redness of the vagina and vulva; a thick white, creamy vaginal discharge; and discomfort and/or pain during sex.

If you’ve had a yeast infection I don’t need to spend any time telling you that vaginal itching from a yeast infection can drive you insane. The discharge that accompanies the infection irritates the skin and causes it to itch constantly. It’s the most tormenting itch that you can experience and the worst part is that it can effect every area of the vulva.

It is extremely difficult not to continuously scratch or rub something abrasive on the skin in an effort to get some relief. Here is where additional problems begin. The constant scratching or rubbing irritates and sometimes breaks the skin. When it begins to heal the skin may develop scabs and that is the rough feeling that many women feel in the outer vulva area.

If you are experiencing the itching near the vaginal opening or if your scratching is covering that area, you may be breaking the skin and in the healing process, it may feel rough.

Now there are other conditions that can cause vaginal itching and roughness. Dermatitis is the most common cause of chronic vulval symptom. In some cases, vulval dermatitis can be caused by a genetic predisposition to allergies and hypersensitivity. Similar to a yeast infection, the initial symptoms will be the itching followed by the scratching. However, the difference is with dermatitis there is no discharge.

If you are one of thousands of women asking the question “My vaginal opening feels rough, could it be a yeast infection? There are four easy, self tests that you can do in the privacy of your home that will answer your question.

1. Make a list of your symptoms. A yeast infection will not only have the itching, you will have the discharge and a strange odor.

2. Make note of your habits. Have you been scratching in the area that feels rough so that the skin could have been broken. If so scabs may have formed.

3. Check the appearance of your underwear or pajamas. As a result of scratching, many times if the skin was broken you will see small spots of blood.

4. Perform a simple self exam by touching the area after cleansing and drying the area. Does the skin feel rough or does it feel like there are scabs on the skin.

If you have recently treated a yeast infection and still have the rough skin remember that it can take some time for symptoms to resolve as the skin of the vulva generally takes longer to heal than in other areas of the body.

If you suspect that you have a yeast infection don’t just treat the symptoms. Find out what you need to do to permanently cure the cause of the yeast infection or it’s highly likely that it can reoccur.

The Blood Sugar Level Chart – A Crucial Tool in Maintaining a Normal Blood Glucose Level

Contrary to common belief, understanding the body’s sugar levels through a blood sugar level chart is not only for people who have diabetes. As the matter of fact, it can be as an early warning if the body will develop diabetes and in some instances be the key to preventing diabetes. However, even with blood sugar chart, maintaining a healthy blood sugar level can still be a difficult task for some, depending on how their body utilizes and responds to glucose.

In normal cases, blood sugar or glucose, which is the main means of transporting energy to all of the body’s cells, is maintained through insulin – which in turn, is the chemical that injects blood sugar to the various cells of the body. Whenever food that contains more than normal sugar level enters the body, extra insulin is produced to lower the blood stream’s sugar ratio so that it can accommodate the extra amount of sugar going in. Experts agree that this makes the body a little bit more hyperactive as the body cells receive a sudden boost of energy.

This ability to maintain the body’s sugar ratio diminishes when one develops diabetes – when, due to some reasons, the pancreas stops or reduces its insulin production. In these cases, having a blood sugar level chart gains a paramount importance as the body stops automatically using up “extra” sugar in the bloodstream. Too much blood sugar damages small blood vessels, the usual victim is the eyes since there are a lot of small blood vessels lining your eyes. Hence, keeping a blood sugar level chart is important to further prevent damages to blood vessels.

A normal person’s body sugar ratio normally ranges in between 4 to 8 mmol/l. This unit measures how much glucose is present per liter of blood plasma. As said, your body adjusts to the many factors affecting the blood sugar in the body. Hence, your levels may vary depending on how far you are from your meals or what your mood is. Your normal body sugar level before meals is anywhere between 4 to 7 mmol/l. 90 minutes after a meal as your body begins to intake digested food, it goes up to just below 10 mmol/l. Before and during your sleep, as your body prepares to rest, your body sugar stabilizes at 8 mmol/l.

Going below these levels are harmful too. This condition known as hypoglycemia can lead to coma or fainting. Mildly, this causes clumsiness. Severely, it can lead to death. If asleep, hypoglycemia can cause nightmares and feeling tired or confused after waking up. In normal people, whenever the body’s sugar level goes dangerously low, it triggers hunger, thus prompting the person to eat and have an early glucose intake. The body still responds and prevents this condition. However, there are instances when the body can’t especially when the person has a habit of skipping meals, the body would not have enough glucose stored in the liver and in the muscles, thus causing weakness or sleepiness.

In the end, maintaining good sugar levels in the body is important not only to maintain good health but in keeping the body in optimum shape and the mind in optimum attention.

Understanding of Risk Analysis in Software Engineering

Importance of risk analysis in software projects can be judged from the fact that, no Software Development Life Cycle is viewed as complete unless it has passed through active consideration to areas having several types of risks associated with them.

The vulnerable areas covered under the process of risk analysis are

1) Assessment of Risk

2) Characterization of Risk

3) Communication of the Risk

4) Risk Management

5) Defining the Risk Related Policies

Following terms related to Risk Analysis need to be understood clearly

Let us try to understand as to what is Risk Analysis?

It is a technique employed to identify and assess various factors, which may jeopardize the success of a project or achieving a goal. These factors can pose some sort of threat to the project. Thus risk analysis covers the process of scientific assessment of such threats vulnerable to the attainment of the organizational goals.

Risk analysis technique is helpful in defining preventive measures to reduce the probability occurrence of such threatening factors. It includes identification of various countermeasures to successfully deal with such constraints with an objective to avoid devastating effects on the organization’s competitiveness in the trade.

One of the risk analysis technique gaining popularity in IT sector is known as FRAP – (Facilitated Risk Analysis Process)

What is Risk Assessment?

Risk assessment involves finding out the quantity and quality of risk associated with a situation of known threat. It covers thorough evaluation of existing security & environment related aspects with a view to assess the probability of harmful effects of the threats to the organization. Risk assessment is the first and foremost step in a risk management process.

What is Business Impact Analysis or BIA?

Business impact analysis refers to the process of finding out the functions critical to the operations of the organization. The outcome of business impact analysis effort is having differentiation between critical and non-critical functions in the organization. A function is viewed as critical when its implications are unacceptable to the organization, or when it is dictated by the law or demanded by the customer or having constraint of internal operations or having unacceptable financial implications.

What is Risk Management?

Risk management is a structured methodology of handling uncertainty associated with a threat. Risk management includes development of strategies to handle the risk either by

– Transfer of the risk to some other party

– Taking actions so as to completely avoid the risk

– Taking measures aimed at reducing the damaging effects of the inevitable risk

– Taking decision to accept some or all of the consequences of a particular risk.

Few of the Risks associated with software product are described as under:

1) Risks related to the Size of the Product:

The size of the software product also can pose threat when it gets subjected to unexpectedly high deviation compared to the expectations. As a best practice, the expectations from the product are compared with similar situations encountered in the past & learning from the past happenings.

Some of the risks associated with the size of the software product can be:

– Judgement on the size of the product can be a threat

– Judgement on the number of users using the product can be a threat

– Judgement on the size of the associated database can be a threat

– Uncontrolled changes in the product requirements can be a threat to the product size

2) Risks having Impact on the Business:

There are certain types of threats or risks, which can have effect on the performance of the business. Such risks are like:

– Quality of the software product having an impact on revenue of the company.

– Product delivery dates having impact on the company business, including costs of delayed delivery.

– Inconsistent customer needs having impact on the company business.

– Drastic change in number of users expected to use the product having impact on the company business.

– Inadequacy of help / documentation as expected by the customer.

3) Risks related to Customers:

Every customer has a different personality, so are their needs. We can categorize customers in the following way according to their behavior & reaction to the product delivered to them.

– Type of customers who happily accept a product as it is when delivered

– Type of customers who are of complaining nature & usually tend to grumble on the quality of the product delivered to them. Such customers pose a reasonable amount of threat to the project manager handling the project

– Type of customers who happen to have past association with the product developing company

– Type of customers who have good technical knowledge of the product

– Type of customers who have fairly good understanding of the usage of the product

– Type of customers who have a good understanding of process of software engineering

– Type of customers who are ready to participate in the process of reviews during the SDLC

– Type of customers who are not much aware of the product & start using it as & when it comes

– Type of customers who are technically clear about their requirements / expectations from the product & are able to define the scope of the project clearly

4) Risks related to Software Engineering Process:

Clear cut definition of the entire process of software engineering is of paramount importance for the success of the product. A badly planned process will result into a software product posing great threats to itself as well as to the organization.

Following guidelines / checklist can be helpful in identifying the software engineering related threats & planning their counter measures.

– Ensure the availability of a documented process planned for the development of the software product.

– Ensure that all the participants of the product development team (whether in-house or third party peoples) is religiously following the documented process

– Ensure the availability of a mechanism for monitoring the activities & performance of third party developers & testers, if any.

– Ensure the active participation of someone who can regularly monitor the technical reviews conducted by the development teams as well as the testing teams.

– Ensure the proper documentation of outcome of the technical reviews detailing the resources deployed to unearth what type of software bugs.

– Ensure the availability of a configuration management mechanism for ensuring adequate consistency in design, development and testing of the product in line with the basic requirements already defined.

– Ensure the availability of a mechanism to handle the changes in product requirements raised by the customer from time to time. Such system should be able to analyze the impact of such changes on the software product

5) Risks related to the Technology of Development:

Many times technological factors also pose great threat to the success of the software product. Following guidelines / checklist can be helpful in identifying the technology related threats & planning their counter measures.

– An absolutely new technology being used for building the software application can be a threat to the organization.

– Unless proper interface is developed between the software & hardware of some new configurations, there can be a cause of threat.

– Unless function, performance and interface of the database system has been proven across the application area in question, there can be a cause of threat.

– Requirement of some absolutely new or highly specialized interface as expected by the product can also pose a threat

– Demand of some specialized requirements of particular type of design and testing tools and techniques can be a cause of concern or risk.

– Too much of structured requirements imposed by the customer can a lot of pressure on the performance of the product

– Inadequacy of productivity-related metrics and quality related metrics available to the product development teams can pose risk of emergence of poor quality product

6) Risks associated with development & Testing Tools:

Different types of development and testing tools can also be a cause of concern many a times during the SDLC.

– Use of some typical methods for analysis can be a cause of concern.

– Use of some typical methodologies for documentation can be a cause of concern.

– Use of some typical methods to design the test cases can be a cause of concern.

– Use of typical tools for managing the project activities can be a cause of concern.

– Use of particular tools for configuration management during the SDLC can be a cause of concern

– Use of particular tools for prototyping purposes can be a cause of concern

– Use of particular tools for providing support to the software testing process can be a cause of concern

– Use of particular tools for managing the documentation can be a cause of concern

7) Risks related to the developmental Environment:

Environment provided for development of the product also plays a key role in the success of the product. Some of the factors or situations described below can pose certain amount of risk.

– Availability of an adequate tool for the management of the software product & its development processes.

– Availability of an adequate tool for performing design and analysis activities.

– Adequacy of performance of tools deployed for design and analysis of the product being created

– Availability of a suitable code generators or compiler compatible with the product being created

– Availability of a suitable testing tools compatible with the product being created.

– Availability of a suitable configuration management tools compatible with the product being created.

– Compatibility of the databases with the environment under which they are deployed.

– Compatibility or proper integration of all software tools with each other

– Adequacy of skills / training to all concerned team members as regards application of the tools.

8) Risks related to the quality of development personnel:

A product coming out of the hands of personnel of lower skill levels shall be certainly a cause of risk to the organization. Following checklist shall be helpful in bridging the gaps in this area.

– Deployment of personnel having best possible skills appropriate to the project

– When in a team, proper combination of various personnel with different temperament & skill levels is important.

– Availability of the nominated personnel during the complete duration of the project is of key importance. The project will get seriously affected If the persons leave in between, due to any reason.