Dumbbells Or Barbell?

Whenever you go to the gym and are using free weights what do you pick up? dumbbells or barbell. Why is it that you get comfortable using dumbbells or barbells for the same old exercise. I will look at both the benefits of both dumbbells and barbells.


Dumbbells require you to lift the same amount of weight in each arm and therefore unlike using the barbell you can not use your dominant arm to lift the weight. This allows you to get equal strength gains or to make your weaker arm catch up in strength with your dominant arm. They require you to have more core stability and balance, as you have a certain amount of weight being control by one hand not two. People feel more comfortable using dumbbells on their own because it is easy to let go of two dumbbells quickly if you are in trouble then a heavy barbell above your head. Finally you have more range of movement using dumbbells and can adapt exercises to incorporate the movability of the dumbbells.


You have more control and stability when using a barbell because you have two hands controlling the weight. You can lift more overall weight with a barbell because you have two hands working together to lift the weight. This is why you maybe able to bench press 100kg on the bar but can not lift 50kg dumbbells. This is important for those who want to increase muscle mass. Barbells will require your muscles to lift more weight and there before put your muscles under more stress, which will in return lead to larger gains.


Through years of experience those that stick to just using either dumbbells or barbells for the same exercise do get gains but they are specific what they use for that exercise. When they do carryout the same exercise but use their non-preferred choice they are not able to do as well and they then refer back to the old way. Those who do weight training should always ensure that their training is varied and do not stick to the same routine over and over. Not only do you get bored your body does to. So next time you go to the gym and you pick up the usual choice put them down and go for the other.

Home Fire Safety – Interior Stairway Design Fire Safety Guidelines


This article is about custom home designing fire safety in an interior stairway.

As to home fire safety in home building plans, much codified ado is made of fire-blocking wall and floor structure, but not much at all on stairway design and stairway construction.

Comment: This codified ado even sort-of includes home fire safety in regard to stairway structure. See IRC 2003, R311.2.2 “Under stair protection. Enclosed accessible space under stairs shall have walls, under stair surface and any soffits protected on the enclosed side with ½-inch (12.7mm) gypsum board.” For fire safety in stairway design and stairway construction, it’s a beginning. Note, please, that there’s no mention of fire-rated gypsum board and heavier weight material as are referenced elsewhere – and have been for quite a long while – for garage wall and ceiling surfaces abutting habitable space.


And there are the high-value references to smoke alarms in home fire safety building codes nationwide, references albeit at minimum levels of materials and methods, in the author’s opinion.

Comment: Minimums? That’s what this custom home designer thinks. Following are designer house plan set stipulations that may be written into smoke alarm methods and materials to extend home fire safety codified minimums. Each alarm shall run on both permanent 120V and replaceable battery, shall feature a combination of ionization and photoelectric sensors. None shall disconnect by wall switch. Each shall connect to a 120V line as first load on a frequently used lighting circuit with overcurrent protection at the panelboard suitable for a double tap. For sleeping areas, an alarm shall be installed according to manufacturer’s specifications on either side of any passage between a sleeping area and a path to egress


So, what about the eminently more airflow-permissive stairwell itself?

In a house aflame, a residential interior stairway can occasion two events: the passage of both occupants to safety and firemen for the sake of safety and the passage of smoke and flame between interior floor levels.

Comment: It might seem as though interior stairway design and stairway construction, this key locus of interior structure in interior fire conditions – good (human transport) and bad (smoke and fire transport) – is at least largely forsaken by residential building authorities having jurisdiction.


In regard to stairwells, that is stairwell design and stairwell construction, what’s at stake is fire-degraded stairway construction, wood stud walls and wood ceiling joists collapsing within the stairwell, engaging stairway and its contents, including people contents, and thereby precluding occupants’ easy physical movement between floor levels.


A residential, interior stairway, other than a spiral stairway – below the stair stringer shall be sheathed from outer stair stringer to outer stair stringer including header cleat with not less than 1 layer of 5/8″ Type-X gypsum board glued, screwed, and taped. It shall be mudded not less than 3 coats, paying particular attention to screw pocks which shall be taped, too.

Where walls run below or immediately next to outside stair stringers shall be framed at walls with lightweight, or cold-formed. The steel frame shall be sheathed on the exterior with 1 layer-5/8″ Type-X gypsum board glued, screwed, and taped. It shall be mudded not less than 3 coats, paying particular attention to screw pocks which shall be taped, too.

If continuous Type-X envelope cannot be applied on the vertical below a staircase, then contractor shall frame with lightweight, or cold-formed, steel shall sheathe the interior with 2 layers-5/8″ Type-X gypsum board glued, screwed, and taped. Where applicable, the exterior sheathed with 1 layer-5/8″ Type-X gypsum board glued, screwed, and taped. It shall be mudded not less than 3 coats, paying particular attention to screw pocks which shall be taped, too.

Where stairwell wall extends above a stair stringer as, for example, a stairwell, or below a stringer as, for example, a mid-landing, contractor shall frame the wall in lightweight, or cold-formed, steel. The frame shall be sheathed on the interior with 2 layers-5/8″ Type-X gypsum board and, where applicable, on the exterior of the wall with 1 layer-5/8″ Type-X gypsum board glued, screwed, and taped. Sheathing shall be mudded not less than 3 coats, paying particular attention to screw pocks which shall be taped, too.

Sheathing shall be sealed at a protrusion with fire-stopping materials conforming to not less than most current ASTM E84 and E814, which sealing shall not necessarily exclude consideration of tumescent sealant at under-stair in closet, cabinet, niche, alcove, bookcase, or similar. Steel frame shall be sheathed continuously, fastened, and mudded at all abuts before other finish clad is applied, that is, the first exterior clad to steel frame below a staircase shall be at least 1 layer-5/8″Type-X gypsum board applied as above.

A high-voltage electrical outlet, device, or appliance shall not be sited anywhere below a stairway.

In sum, the steel’s there to break down more slowly when engaged, purposely to wrack and sag but not to cinders and ash; the extra layers of Type-X are there to better hold its form and hold flames from you on your way up or down the steps.

Get Six Pack Abs Much Faster with 3 Advanced Techniques

I know you might be wondering that it is not easy to get six pack Abs in a very short period of time, but I am going to destroy that myth once and for all!

It is not hard to get strong, sexy abs in a very short period of time when you know the right way to do it.

And so far, the only things I have heard from other people are:

1. Hundreds to thousands of Ab Crunches / Sit ups / Leg Raises

2. Hours and hours of cardio

3. Go on completely strict diet so you starve to death

4. Get on of those ab machines advertised on TV

5. Drink diet pills

It is shameful to say that these are the biggest most bitter lies one could tell you when it comes to getting lean or getting a six pack like you've always dreamed of.

I am not going to tell you why they are big fat lies (more on that later), but I can definitely tell you what you REALLY need to do if you want to get the ripped looking abs.

– Interval Training

I know this may sound new to you but a few minutes of research on Google will give you hundreds and hundreds of articles on Interval Training.

With a 20 minute interval training workout, you will be working your lower body to such a level, that your stomach will just give up the fat that it is holding back.

In short, you will be burning more stomach fat with interval training than any other exercise. And moreover, you will also be burning fat even while you sleep!

– Weight Training

This may come as a shock to you but you will not pick up by lifting heavy weights! It will take really heavy weights and different techniques to pack up big muscles really fast.

All you need to do is 45 minutes of total body workouts using free weights like the dumbbell or the kettle bell.

The best way to make use of the 45 minutes is to choose total body exercises like Squats, Deadlifts, Chest presses, Rows etc. By working your major muscles, you will be working the smaller muscles at the same time.

That means you will burn 200-300% more fat the smart way.

– Core Training

It does not require expensive ab machines or hundreds of ab crunches to get six pack abs.

All you need to do is strengthen your abdominal muscles and keep burning fat. Doing this will get your six pack abs visible in no time. I promise!

What kind of Core training can get you that washboard abs?

# Plank and Variations of the Plank

# Deadlifts

# Front Squats

# Swings

# Swiss Ball Rollouts

# Leg Thrusts

# Ball Crunches

These are just a few of the many exercises that make your abdominals super strong just waiting for you to remove that fat off your abs so they can peel out and show off

Here's the gist of it;

Interval Training and Weight Training will successfully shred the pounds of fat if you keep consistent and keep choosing the right total body exercises. Core training will strengthen your abs in the shape of a six pack so that once the fat is gone, your abs will just peel out of your skin with that washboard look

The Summers Hottest Broadway Tickets

The summer is typically the slow time for people who love the New York City theater experience. Broadway tickets seem to sell like hot cakes starting in September and pushing through the Christmas holiday season. Most of the new blockbuster musicals and plays open around this time and seats sell out at almost every legitimate theater on The Great White Way. The holiday shows add to the excitement of the season and Broadway most certainly comes alive as the leaves begin to fall through Central Park. The spring and summer months are not a dismal time for theater, however, and there are some great show still opening during these months. Great musicals and plays which are not to be missed and gems which can be had at a great price during the off season.

110 In The Shade is an outstanding musical which opened at the Studio 54 Theater located at 254 West 54th Street. This amazing musical production began it's run on May 9, 2007, and many true fans of theater claim that this is what Broadway used to be and is meant to be. With many shows coming off of Hollywood movies nowdays it is always nice to see a classic style musical which hold the heart of a New York Show. 110 In The Shade does this and does it well. With the star of the show being Audra McDonald who shines, stuns and amazes audiences with her capturing voice and translucent beauty. The musical focuses on a story of love during the 1930s in Texas and is based on Richard Nash's 1954 play The Rainmaker.

The hit movies of Hollywood often do make a great night out for a show and Legally Blonde follows suite to a formula that works. Many times people just need to see something they know and can relate to. A musical which offers familiarity with humor and great songs. This is why Legally Blonde Broadway tickets have become a much sought after commodity. This musical comedy opened at the Palace Theater on April 29, 2007, and focuses around the blonde sweetheart everyone loves "Elle Woods" who jumps right from the silver screen into the heart of the Big Apple.

A surprise for the season is the cult classic move Xanadu which has hit the stage in a huge way. This disco era musical was originally to open off-Broadway and then changed plans to open at the Helen Hayes Theater located at 240 West 44th Street. The Xanadu opening occurred on June 26, 2007, and is based on the classic 1980's film which stared Olivia Newton-John and Gene Kelly in what would become his last major role. Xanadu did achieve a cult classic label which still lingers on to this day. The movie itself was a disaster and achieved hard any box office success, but the soundtrack did go double platinum.

Broadway Tickets On The Off Season

With Broadway tickets, it is always to secure them through the box office of the theater. This assures a face value price and a chance at great seats. When a show on Broadway becomes very popular many show times become very difficult to obtain if you did not call the theater the day the Broadway tickets went on sale. The summer season for theater in New York offers some great musical and play opening which the tickets can be had fairly easy, even last minute. Even blockbuster hits with huge weekly box office grosses can be had at a great price. Take advantage of all that New York City theater has to offer and get great seats to an amazing show on the off season of Broadway.

Theory of a Nothing Universe


My entire existence has been dominated by one simple question, “How did all of this begin”? By all of this I of course am referring to our entire universe. I have pondered this question for over 25 years, and I am 31 years old now. Science was always my favorite subject. when I was growing up. I used to spend hours in high school discussing my own thoughts and theories with my science teachers after school. I continued to do so even when I attended the University. I learned the three most popular and accepted theories of the day. The most popular of which is the Big Bang Theory. The only credit I am willing to give the Big Bang Theory is that it is possible, however; improbable it may be. What keeps the Big Bang Theory alive is that there seems to be scientifically proven evidence that points to it as the one and only explanation. I would argue that all of the very same evidence that seemingly supports the Big Bang could also support other hypothesis. The one sticking point for me is the “Before Period”. What existed before the singularity exploded? Where did all of that energy come from? We are talking, after all, about all of the energy contained within all of the matter in the universe; as well as all the free energy traversing this expanse. The Oscillating Universe Theory is nice, but it suffers the same problem; assuming there ever actually was a beginning. If the universe has always existed then it is a plausible theory. The same holds true for the Steady State Universe Theory. The notion that the universe has always existed, and will always exist as it has forever and ever. The only change in this model is the distances between galaxies, and other objects increases with new matter being created; so that the universe continues to look the same in all directions The big problem with this theory is that we know the universe is not unchanging. It is expanding and does change. We know that stars explode, exhaust their fuel and fade away, or crush themselves down into a singularity. This universe we live in is a very dynamic place. Galaxies collide, solar systems collide, planets and moons, and a whole host of objects can smash into one another at any moment. All of it dancing to the gravitational music of the heavens. All of which points to anything but a steady state.

What I am about to propose in this paper is an idea that I have dwelled upon for years. It is a theory that I believe in, and has helped me come to a better understanding of our universe. It also goes beyond the sticking point of, “What came before”. In my opinion there are only two current theories that make sense. There is my theory of the nothing universe and there is the theory of God. No matter how hard I rack my brain I just cannot come to any other conclusion. Either my theory is correct, the correct theory has not been written, or God is responsible for everything. These were the choices I gave myself, and for now I am going to stick with my conclusions. My goal now is to share my theory with the world, and hope that it is a good one. I believe that this theory neatly ties together all of the lose ends of existence. I also believe that it is every bit as good as the Big Bang Theory. With a clear understanding of our beginnings, we will be able to gain full insight into the inner workings of our reality. I would also like to add that I refer to my hypothesis as a theory because I believe most, if not all, of the evidence in support of the Big Bang can also be used to support my hypothesis.

The Nothing Universe

We are all familiar with our human concept of nothing. When a bottle is empty, we say; “Nothing is in it”. We know that this is not actually the case. What we are referring to is the fact that what we thought should be in the bottle is no longer there. In order for nothing to truly be in the bottle, the bottle itself would have to contain a vacuum. A vacuum is the complete absence of matter. This would be a perfect vacuum. Space is not a perfect vacuum, and it is difficult to say if a perfect vacuum can even exist. Regardless a vacuum is the true concept of nothing, but it is not the true form of nothing. What I am saying is that our concept of nothing and the true form of nothing are two different things. The true state of nothing is neutrality. A balance between charges in a perfectly arranged atom. This perfect atom I have named the Nothing Atom. This nothing atom is composed of both matter and anti matter particles joined together and separated by neutrons. The nothing atom is composed of the proton, the neutron, the electron, as well as their anti matter counterparts. They are all locked together and kept from destroying each other by neutrons. I do not know the exact arrangement of these particles in this perfect atom, but that is irrelevant. All that is important is the concept that they are all locked together in this one perfect Nothing Atom. The electron and the positron do not annihilate each other, because they occupy different orbital lobes. Again, I do not fully understand the exact arrangement of this atom; only that it existed. Whatever the perfect arrangement is, this perfectly neutral Nothing Atom is the only thing that existed in the pre-universe and composed infinity entirely. No free spce existed between these atoms. There was no motion and there for no time, but we can use the concept of infinity to give us an idea of the state of the universe up until the point of the event.

So now we have the perfect nothing universe composed entirely of the neutral and perfect Nothing Atom. All energy is locked up tight in the form of particles making up this nothing universe. This is the state of the pre-universe (Nothing Universe) in all directions to infinity. Now, here comes the major dilemma of my theory. Perhaps it was Nuclear Fission or some unknown process native to this one particular form of matter? Something had to happen in just one of these perfect Nothing Atoms to cause it to destabilize starting a chain reaction. Is the Nothing Atom a very heavy element, inwhich fission would make sense or is it smaller and some other reaction took place? Of this I am not sure. What I do know is that something had to create a destabilization of one of the particles within the atom to lead to an irreversible chain reaction that would lead to the birth of the known universe. I refer to this as the EVENT.

The Event

The event represents the exact moment when the reaction began, and our universe began to grow within this sea of atoms. Since the laws of physics do not exist, as of yet it is difficult for me to state conclusively that nuclear fission lead to the event. Spontaneous fission tends to be less common among lighter elements. If it is responsible then the nothing atom is most likely a heavier element. If not then some other process had to cause the event. Whatever the case may be, I have come up with a theory to explain why it had to happen based upon the concept of probability. Statistically speaking, one would have to assume that when you are dealing with infinity; the probability of one event occurring is one in infinity. That is to say that if an event can occur, however improbable; a chance still exists for its occurrence when infinity is taken into consideration. As one of my former geology professors, Dr. Eastler, used to say, “It didn’t have to happen, but it had to happen.” Once this one neutral Nothing atom destabilized, it set into motion a chain reaction that would lead to the greatest single explosion that will ever occur in the history of reality. Some may call it “the Big Bang”, I call it; “The Event”.

This is not a singularity exploding into existence, this is an atom setting off a chain reaction in a sea of perfect atoms. This reaction is instantaneous and is, I believe, the only event currently occurring in our universe at a speed greater than that of the speed of light. This is why we do not see the light emanating from this expansion of our universe. I propose that if we could travel fast enough and far enough out into space we would eventually come to a wall of energy moving away from us. I would call this the “Event Horizon” but that name is already taken so I will refer to it as the “Creation Wave”. This wall of energy is the boundary between our universe and the nothing universe. On the other side of this wall of energy is the universe as it existed before the event. An endless sea of perfect nothing atoms awaiting their turn to be annihilated by the impending “Creation Wave”. This means that our universe is still being created as you read this, and will continue to be created for eternity. This may also explain certain observations that our universe is not slowing down, but accelerating as it expands outward. The creation wave is essentially pulling the matter behind it outward due to the ongoing expansion, and or the immense gravity of the nothing universe on the other side of the creation wave. Does gravity even exist yet? Do any of the laws of physics exist in the nothing universe? If that were true than our universe would in no way interact with or feel the nothing universe on the other side of the creation wave. Even if there were an infinite amount of mass on the other side. I am supposing that the laws of physics are nullified by the form of the nothing atom. Whatever the case may be the creation wave is a never ending wave of destruction moving away from the center of the known universe at a mind boggling speed. This expansion also helps to explain why there is so much empty space out there. The universe we know is expanding outward to fill empty space, where empty space had never existed. A universe full of matter and energy in our universe and matter and energy in the anti universe. If an anti universe exists. In this theory i would have to account to the lack of anti matter v.s matter in our universe. One has to ask the question, “Where did all of the anti-matter go”?

I have possibilities to offer as to why we are not blinded by and vaporized by the energy being released by this process. One possibility is that the mass of the nothing universe on the other side of the Creation wave is infinitely great, that the energy and light from the event is bent back towards the nothing universe as the Creation wave moves forward. In that scenerio there would have to be some interaction between our two universes beyond the creation wave. The second possibility is that the Creation wave is so far away from us now that the light emitted from this event cannot reach our region of space any longer. Leaving behind nothing more than background radiation as the thumb print to this event. That is not to say that if we develop the capability to look far enough out into space that we may not catch a glimpse or some evidence of this light, but I highly doubt it. This Creation wave has been traveling outwards at a speed greater than that of the speed of light for well over 15 billion years now. Assuming the universe is 15 billion years old.

Another event may have occurred at the exact moment that the Creation wave began its long journey outward and forever. A the exact moment the chain reaction began not just one, but two universes were born. The first universe is the matter universe and the second universe was the anti-matter universe. These two universes exist on two separate plains that I like to refer to as the “Above” and “Below” planes of existence. The “Central Plane” is where the nothing universe existed in one dimension and in perfect harmony. As soon as the Event occurred the majority of anti matter phased into a new dimension, or plane of existence. Similarly all of the matter in our known universe phased into its own plane of existence. I have designated the matter universe as the Above plane, and I have designated the anti-matter universe the Below plane. These are two separate universes, on of which is composed of matter, and the other of anti-matter. Again, I would like to only deal with one universe in my theory, but I have to try and explain what happened to all of the anti-matter. There would have to be equal parts of matter and anti-matter to account for. Then again could only matter compose the perfect atom? Protons, Neutrons, and electrons linked together to form the nothing atom? Perhaps, but I can’t shake the feeling that anti-matter is involved somehow.

Another way to possibly picture these two universes as existing simultaneously would be to envision all of the matter arranged the way it is in our matter universe, and then imagining that the anti matter that is arranged in the anti-matter universe as occupying the empty pockets of space in our universe. So, if you look out into space now in our universe you will notice that there is a lot of empty space out there. The same is true for the anti matter universe. Matter in one universe occupies the empty space of the other universe and vice versa. We perceive it as empty space, because the other universe exists on a different dimensional plane of existence. This is one other possibility.

A link could exist between these two planes. This link can be found in the form of a black hole. A black holes gravity is so intense that it literally punches a hole into that other dimension. Just as anti matter is spewed out into our dimension from a black hole, I believe that matter is spewed forth from the same black hole into anti-matter space. A black hole may represent a bridge between the two planes. If you can imagine a matter black hole warping space and creating a wormhole that is linked to its counterpart or anti matter black hole. Perhaps they are one and the same or perhaps they occupy the same space at the same time. These two black holes being linked by a stable wormhole or perhaps black holes are connected to white holes. Perhaps white holes exist in both the matter and anti matter universes as the outlets or the transfer between the two universes.

Black holes share a very common link to the state of the universe in the very beginning and that is its very intense gravitational field. This field exists due to the sheer quantity of matter contained with in a small amount of space. The difference is that there was no free energy in the neutral universe, all energy was locked up in particles contained within the perfect atom. If there were any free space in that neutral universe, no doubt the gravity would be of a strength we have never before witnessed. A super black hole would pale in comparison.

The state of our universe today is that of chaos in an unbalanced universe. The same is true in the anti matter universe. The universe that we know today is trying to return to that neutral state. That is why atoms strive for balance. The elements that exist today are thanks to processes that took place in stars. In a sense our elements were the first things that began to evolve in our universe, ultimately leading the elements necessary for the evolution of life.


I cannot say that the universe will never return to the neutral state of the nothing universe. The fact remains that 15 billion years may be only a split second after the event on a universal time scale. We may still be witnessing the very early stages of our universes existence. Perhaps one day events will take place in the universe to allow for a pocket of nothing material or neutral matter to form. Is this what a black hole is? Perhaps it will grow slowly over time repairing itself and creating a new neutral universe inside of an ever expanding universe, surrounded by the first neutral universe. Perhaps this wave of balance and chaos has been going on for some time and the space that we are familiar with exists between one of these waves. Perhaps the whole thing exists balanced as a wave of existence and neutrality. These processes taking place on such a scale that we cannot even begin to comprehend the amount of time we are dealing with. I personally believe that we are living in the first universe and the only one that will exist. The matter and anti matter universes existing on separate dimensional planes, exchanging matter and anti matter with one another through various processes such as black holes, and white holes.

I cannot conceive of this universe ever returning to a balanced neutral nothing universe again. My belief is that we live in this relatively infant universe, the first to exist in infinity, and will exist in infinity from this point on. As I stated before though, you can never rule out possibilities. The possibility that matter in our universe will begin to collapse in on itself may occur at some distant point in the future. If the Creation wave gets far enough away from the center of the universe then perhaps its gravitational influence, if there is one, will drop below that of the influence of near by galaxies and all matter in between.

The universe could then begin to collapse in on itself, reform the neutral universe and the event would occur at some point in an even more distant and mind boggling future. Like I said, I envision our universe as expanding inside of the neutral universe. At the same time the anti matter universe is doing the same thing on its own plane of existence. Two universe, one to represent the matter universe that we live in and the other in the anti matter universe. One would have to assume that the laws of physics would exist in much the same way in both universes. I have not begun to ponder that question as of yet. I assume it does based on the fact that anti matter should interact much the same way that matter does in our universe. This is my working theory of the beginning of the universe. It is not concrete, but represents what may have been the state of the universe before the beginning.

I also believe that the same evidence that may serve to prove the Big Bang theory may also serve to prove my hypothesis. The evidence is not wrong, I am not saying that. The evidence was gathered using scientific methods that have been conducted over and over only to come to the same conclusion. The evidence is entirely correct; I maintain that the conclusion that the evidence is attributed to is wrong. I plan on writing a more comprehensive paper presenting the Theory of the Nothing Universe if this Hypothesis is moderately well accepted. I will then provide the scientific discoveries that I believe will provide a great deal more support for my conclusions than for the Big Bang conclusion.

Five Tips For Orchid Lighting

These tips cover the problems of orchid lighting. Lighting problems are frequently encountered by beginners as they are among the most difficult to resolve.

  • Orchids generally thrive with as much indirect light as you can provide. Especially in summer, do not expose orchids to direct light, as they can sunburn quickly. A good method to test whether an orchid is properly lighted is to feel the leaves. If they are hot, the light is too strong and they will form black burn spots. Move the plant away from the window, or move to a shady spot on the window sill. Another method to test light intensity is to look at leaf color – if the foliage is a rich dark green, it's probably not receiving enough light. Orchid leaves will be a light green color when they are receiving adequate light. Keep in mind that the more heat and light your orchid receives, the more air circulation the plant requires, and the more water the orchid will need.
  • As the sunlight softens in the fall months, slowly increase your orchids light exposure by moving them closer to windows or adjusting filtering curtains. During the winter months, try to give your orchids as much sun as possible, include direct sunlight in the mornings and late afternoon, so they will be encouraged to bloom. As the days grow longer in springtime, watch for signs of redness in leaf color, which indicates that the foliage is approaching its maximum light tolerance. Then slowly decrease light exposure by moving the orchids away from windows or adjusting your filter curtains to provide more shade.
  • To keep your orchids prominently displayed in your windowsills, use sheer curtains to control the amount of light reaching the plants. Thicker curtain fabrics or fabrics with patterns will reduce light intensity for summer, sheerer curtains allow more light to pass through for spring and fall. Curtain patterns and pleats will create alternate bands of light and shade, which simulates the natural environment orchids enjoy in trees. Since orchids thrive with strong, indirect light, the same filtering fabrics that protect your orchids will also provide good light levels in your home!
  • Turn your orchids periodically to provide even lighting and encourage even growth. Monopodial plants (such as Vandas and phalaenopsis) should be turned 180 degrees about once a month. Sympodial orchids (such as Cattleyas and Oncidiums) should be turned 90 degrees left and then 180 degrees right, successively, to keep their growth upright. Turn sympodials about once a week except when they begin to bloom. While blooming, do not turn the plants or the blooms may develop slightly twisted as they attempt to follow the light. After blooms have fully emerged, start the turning sequence again.
  • Individual orchids, even those of the same type, respond differently to light. If your orchids are inexplicably languishing, try moving your plants around to positions with different light intensity. If you have an orchid that is not blooming, try moving it to a sunnier area, especially if the leaves are darker green than the leaves on your blooming orchids. If your orchid leaves are turning yellow, it may be from excess light – move it back from the windowsill or try a filtering curtain to reduce light intensity. In late spring to early fall, you can move your orchids outside, hanging them from tree branches where they will receive good indirect light or light filtered through the leaves of the trees. Do not be afraid to experiment avoiding the extremes of strong direct sunlight or substantive shade.

Motorcycle Suspension – Basic Set Up

Modern sporting motorcycles can come with a near dizzying array of suspension adjustment. Pre-load, compression damping, rebound, high-speed damping, low-speed damping, etc. Where to start?

Before you start looking over your bike to see what we're talking about, please note this article is primarily intended for the sportbike rider. Most cruisers have little or no suspension adjustment. You either live with what the factoryave you, you have your suspension components upgraded with after market units, or have the internal bits replaced by a professional.

The easiest and most important adjustment you can make is to set the static sag. Sag is just what it sounds like – how much the bike sags when you're on it.

Ideally your sag should be from 25 to 30 mm, or 1 to 1 in inches, on most bikes. To find out where your sag is, you'll need a helper. Dress up in all your usual riding apparel, including helmet, leathers, boots, etc. You want to set your sag using the same weight as when you ride. While standing next to the bike, push down on the tail once or twice to make sure the suspension is at its normal resting position.

Using a dowel rod, yard stick, or similar device, measure the distance from the ground to a particular point on the motorcycle. Turn signals or a point on the seat or frame will work fine. Just make sure the point you measure from is not covered up when you're on the bike. OK, got the measurement? Either write down the measurement (in inches or millimeters) or simply mark the spot on your rod / stick.

Now get on the motorcycle, in full gear. This is where your helper is needed. For the most accurate measurement, try to hold the bike fully vertical with both your feet on the pegs. In this position, take another measurement. See the difference? That is your sag. If it's smaller than 1 inch or greater than 1 in inches, you'll need to adjust the pre-load on your forks and / or shock to get the desired results. Increase pre-load (typically a clockwise turn of the adjusting screw or collar) a little at a time to reduce your sag. Decreasing pre-load will increase the amount your bike sags.

Adjusting rebound and compression damping is probably more complicated, and requires riding your bike and trying different settings over time. More compression damping in front reduces the amount your bike will dive under braking. More in the back will reduce how much the rear end squats under power. Too much compression damping can cause the bike to ride rough, transmitting every bump in the road to you without absorbing much. If you're only riding on a smooth racetrack, more compression damping might be a good thing. If you ride on gnarly back roads, you'll probably want to soften up your settings.

Rebound damping affects how much your wheels "bounce" off the brakes and wallow under power. Too much rebound damping and your suspension will not react fast enough to properly follow bumps in the road. Your forks or shock can get "packed down" by repeated bumps, which reduces your suspension travel and can lead to a very poor ride, or worse. Too little rebound damping in the front or rear and your bike will be walling around like a '68 Cadillac, making it very unpleasant and hard to control.

Your mission is to find the right balance for you and your riding style. Usually it's best to start out with the settings your bike came with from the factory. There's a reason why they're set where they are. From there, spend a little time on the bike. Is it too stiff? Does it wallow? Pay attention to how the different ends of the bike feel. Adjust accordingly, but not too much. We suggest adjusting in increments of one click at a time, until you find the sweet spot you're looking for.

Once you get your favorite settings dialed in, you can start playing around with them a little at different times. For example, you might want to tighten things up a bit for a fast track day at California Speedway. Or you might want to loosen them up a notch or 2 if you're planning to ride Carmel Valley Road (ask me how I know!). Whether or not you choose to leave the settings alone or make occasional adjustments, making your motorcycle handle better for you and your riding style lower lap times, and will definitely enhance your riding enjoyment.

How to Install Laminate Flooring – Tips for Getting Beautiful and Lasting Results

Prior Considerations

You do not have to be daunted with learning how to install laminate flooring, as this is one activity that you can do on your own leisure, with the purchase of complete installation kit from the laminate flooring retailers. When you have decided to do the task yourself, one of the important considerations to make is the orientation of the laminate flooring you wish to install. You also need to purchase enough flooring materials and a few more extras to cover for any unexpected shortcomings you might have. Do store the laminates inside the house for several days so they can expand and adjust according to indoor humidity and temperature. What makes installing laminate flooring so easy is the fact that the floating technique for installation is used, with no adhesive nor nails used to anchor it down to the subfloor.

Initiating the Installation

Prior to installation, make sure that no loose materials are left lying on the floor and that the surface is all evened out. Moldings, doors, and baseboards, if present, should be removed and set before before you start. The underlay is them rolled out, making sure that it is level as well. Remedy any slow bumps, curves, or slightly depressed part of the floor. Knowing the dimension of the room is also important, in order to achieve the proper placement of laminate flooring boards. You can also solicit advice and tips on how to install laminate flooring properly from professionals, if you know one.

How to Install Boards

Part of knowing how to install laminate flooring is to know the proper way of laying out the first three rows of laminate boards. Lay the first row boards with its grove side facing the wall, leaving a small space in between for any expansion of the boards that might occur. You need to start with the installation of a full board as the first in the row. You can either glue the pieces together or just make sure that the tongue and groove fits snugly. Use your hammer sparingly, as this tool has the tendency to damage the edges of the laminate flooring. The first board on the second row should be shorter by 1/3 of the length of the first board of the first row, while the first board of the third row should only be 1/3 long than the first one.

Aftercare is Important

After you finished with the installation, you can now replace baseboards and molding, but make sure that they still match the new flooring. If not, you need to make the effort of locating one that fit the flooring in terms of color and style. As you took the time and effort to learn how to install laminate flooring, do take the time and effort to take care of it during its use so as to ensure beautiful flooring that lasts for a long time.

Xara Photo and Graphic Designer 7 – Affordable Alternatives For Graphic Designers

There are many options available for graphic designers these days and they pick the application that fits their need the best. However, an overwhelming major stick to using the Adobe Creative Suite. This suite is used by thousands of graphic design professionals for web design, logo design, print production and similar type of works. However, depending on the type of work and budget the designers can also choose some less expensive alternatives to the Adobe products.

The designers who want a pocket friendly design tool that can cater to their needs can buy the Xara Photo & Graphic Designer 7 which retails for less than $ 90. It is also offered on trial for a period of one week. This comprehensive design suite is capable of works like image editing, 3D and 2D graphics, page layout designing and animation. The users need not switch applications for doing the various tasks involved in their work.

The advantage of Xara Photo & Graphic Designer 7 is that it is user friendly and the first time users would not have any problem in mastering its interface and various tools. However, this is not to mean that it is meant only for amateur designers. On the contrary, it is capable of producing media rich web pages and stunning art designs. Those who buy the package also get a content pack consisting of clip arts amounting to 282 MB. They also get templates for various types of projects like greeting cards, scrapbooks, photo albums, CD labels and animated banners etc.

The Adobe suite users may find it somewhat underpowered initially. This is especially appropriate when the designers work on text layouts. However, the majority of features seen in Adobe InDesign are also seen here. There is excellent support for both CMYK and PANTONE color separation. However, the graphic designers working exclusively for print media can consider buying the more feature packed Xara Designer Pro 7.

It is quite evident that the Xara team that made the app focused more on ease of use and practicality from the user's perspective. Tasks like Red eye removal and selective blurring in image are incredibly easy in this app. It does almost all things that one can do with Photoshop, but with fewer steps and time. It supports exporting in the widely used PDF format which is beneficial for using in the design setups where a number of designers work on the same project.

The application also supports a huge number of audio and video file formats which is a boon for the graphic design professionals. The app also offers plenty of importing options. While Xara Photo & Graphic Designer 7 packs in a plethora of sharing options for email, print, Mobile devices, it would be nice to see social networking integration. The export capabilities may not be as robust as its import features but it is decent for the majority of users. The users will also appreciate its decent file organization features which come close to Adobe Bridge.

Most Affordable Distance Learning MBA Degrees

The experience is something most professionals and full-time MBA students will never appreciate. The friendships built through an intense environment will last forever, and have led to an invaluable network through the industry. With study tours, the Online MBA in IT course work turns the world into a global campus. Study tours are part of the curriculum and requirement for graduation. Students meet and learn from businessmen and women, government officials and politicians, and senior members of the corporate world. Courses such as cross cultural negotiations, critical operational analysis, global communications, corporate leadership, and business strategy are taught in the boardroom of Lufthansa Airlines in Germany, a GE power processing factory in Budapest, Hungary, or the halls of British Parliament. Classes begin on the chalkboard back home but absolutely finish on the shop floor next to a computer assembly line in Beijing, China. Intense class discussions combined with electronic case studies, case analysis, guests lecturing, and hand son consulting projects are often held on location in the territory under study.

Every semester, in addition to the traditional MBA students who had taken time off from their corporate life to enroll in the distance learning MBA program, I would find one or two students who were clearly "outliers" to these main corporate types-for example, a physician, an attorney, an executive director from a nonprofit organization, or a small business owner or entrepreneur. It did not take long to realize this trend was an Indicator of an under interest, and need, for these well-educated professional swell trained in the education of their profession-to learn about the business side of their professional lives.

Special to Duke was the global emphasis. International business practices are best absorbed in an international environment. The fact that the program facilitated the visitation of local or multinational companies, and sponsored speakers from local businesses or government officials, can not be replicated in a classroom in Durham, North Carolina. There is no traditional MBA program that can address practical business problems and then experience them in a local environment. Louis holds classes on campus at the modern five-story, 135,000-square-foot facility. The Center offers EMBA students elegant accommodations, dining, lounge, a fitness center, a pub, and a business center under one roof. Similarly, Ford ham University hosts classes in Manhattan at the Lincoln Center campus and three weekend residential at a beautiful conference center less than a half-hour? S drive from the city in Tarry town, When the reserve calls for being on the actual campus of the corporation, the classroom is held in the corporate boardroom and lodging at a contracted hotel nearby. When the corporate boardroom becomes the classroom students meet with senior officers from the host company, sometimes with the CEO or CFO, tour the facility, and lunch with employees. When classes are held at the corporation, anything is possible. It is not unusual for Larry Ellison, Bill Gates or Michael Eisner to check in on a class and answer a few questions.

Texas Holdem – Five Best and Five Worst Opening Hands

Just getting great cards does not guarantee raking in the pot. It has often been said that Texas Hold'em takes minutes to learn and a lifetime to master. Truer poker words have seldom been spoken. Knowing how to read the other players, how to bet and how to bluff are certainly important components of any Texas Hold'em player's game. In the hands of a skilled master or even in the fist of a lucky novice, any two cards can be the basis for a winning hand. However, nothing breeds success like luck and guts paired up with knowledge; so, it's a good idea to know the five best hands and the five worst hands that you can have after the hold cards have been dealt.

Without a doubt "pocket rockets" – two aces – are the cards you want to see when you pick up your hold cards. Remember that that even two aces can be beaten, so be sure and reassess your hand after each round of betting. Do not get so attached to those Aces that you can not give them up.

Cowboys – a pair of kings – are the second best initial hand in Texas Hold'em followed by a pair of ladies – two queens. Next comes "big slick", a Ace and a King. The fifth best two card opening set would then be the "little slick" combination of an Ace and a Queen, again qualified improvements the odds. While there is almost universal agreement on the first four hands, there is some difference of thought on the fifth best. There are those who think a pair of "hooks' – two jacks – beats out the" little slick. "Two jacks do win in about two out of ten starts, if no higher face cards show up in the flop.

Deuce (a two) is the common denominator in three of the five worst Texas Hold'em hands. Deuce seven unsuited and deuce eight unsuited are the two hold card sets you do not want to turn over. They can not make straights with the next three cards dropped and their pair possibilities are at the low end of the spectrum. Fold'em fast unless you're just playing for fun although playing them probably will not be much fun either.

Three eight; still no straight chance and the pairs are only negligibly better. Deuce six and three seven are the fourth and fifth worst hands out there; the only thing that sets them apart from the other three dogs is the fact that miracles can turn them into straights. Do not count on miracles to turn hold cards that lose 9 times out of ten into winners.

All that being written, Texas Hold'em is a lot like any other sport: On any given day, any given hand can win. The players who win consistently at Texas Hold'em, though, do not rely on lightening striking. They know the odds, they know their cards, they know their fellow players and they play them all with skill and hope to get lucky once in awhile.

Learn About the History of Digital Cameras

Digital cameras now outsell their 35mm predecessors in the general market and it is only the diehard celluloid junkies that maintain allegiance to film. The commercial photography industry now uses exclusively exclusive digital technology to produce images due to their immediate shot review and post production efficiency. The feature film industry still maintains loyalty to Super 35mm film however the latest advances in HD technology has threatened even this most sacrosanct of institutions.

Digital cameras are available in a multitude of specifications from cost effective basic models to extremely expensive professional kit. They are user friendly and compatible with editing software making them much more accessible. The commercial interest in digital cameras is because the images that are captured can be checked immediately which enables time and money saving, including the acceptable quality of product before wrapping a shoot.

The principals behind that of digital cameras are based on light-sensitive sensors or pixels. This leaves some diehard disciples of celluloid to claim that the images do not exist in their own heritage as they are made of variable dots of light and therefore not a completely accurate depiction of and image. This is quite pedantic however and the ease of use and post-production qualities far out way the potential for pixelated images.

Digital cameras began as the concept of digitizing motion images and digitizing photographs via scanners. These first generations of digital images were used in space exploration where photos would have been taken from stars and planets using a mosaic photosensor which periodically captured still digital images helping with the approach and landing to planets. This technology used elements of camera design that were later adapted for development of digital cameras.

The next generation of semi-digital cameras were the analogue digital film cameras which came around the early to mid 80s. The massive benefits were the telecasting of live events in this format via satellite. The issues with the cameras were their astronomical cost and the poor picture quality and the first images were taken of the 1984 Olympics and printed in newspaper print resolution in a Japanese newspaper.

Around 1990 the first generations of digital cameras as we know it following on from the formation of the first jpeg and mpeg standards were created. Over the last 10 years the price of digital technology has dropped significantly, with some early models demanding 10,000GBP plus. Digital cameras now dominate the market and in some areas have rendered celluloid almost obsolete.

The continual advances in digital technology with higher resolutions and high definition push the prices of older models down making them affordable and practical.

Are You Tired of Being Skinny? Here's a Weight Lifting Plan That Will Force You to Gain Muscle Mass!

One of the key elements to building yourself a sculpted muscular body is having a good weight lifting plan, however where do you start? What needs to be included? We do not want to spend all this time in the gym if we're not going to go about it in the proper way. So if you want to make sure you're doing things right, here are a few keys to keep in mind:

1. Get Your Sleep

One of the most critical components to any successful weight lifting plan is ensuring you get enough sleep for your muscles to repair themselves. Do not downplay how important this is, especially if you're stuck at a plateau, getting enough sleep is critical to your progress. Now you may be thinking that 8 hours is sufficient, however it's best to get anywhere from 8 to 10 hours each day.

2. Eat More And Eat Frequently

Another key to a good plan is making sure you eat 4-6 meals a day. Obviously you want to ensure that these meals add up to a caloric surplus as well if you want to put on any weight, make sure you're eating at least 500 calories over your maintenance calories. If you're wondering what your maintenance is, take your bodyweight and multiply it by 15, you have to eat 500 calories more than that to gain weight at a steady pace.

3. Keep Snacks On You

Another good idea is to make sure you're always carrying around a healthy snack with you so that you've never eaten without any food to eat. Some good examples to carry around are fruit, nuts, cheese strings and protein bars.

Now while these tips will help you to formulate a weight lifting plan, you're going to need more than these tips to get yourself a system which will work successfully for you.

The Stovetop Tea Kettles Vs Electric Kettles

Many people today consider electric kettle the best option for boiling water. Boiling water can be used for many purposes including for making coffee, tea, soups and other food products. Electric kettles have been around for many years, however, its styling and designing has seen changes with the passage of time.

How electric tea kettles function

Electric kettles are usually made out of materials that are heat-resistant and are more durable such as copper, steel or even plastic and such similar materials. These tea pot do not require gas stoves for heating but operate through electricity and heat water through an element. These tea pots also feature an automatic shut off system, enabling the kettle to stop heating as soon as the water reaches its boiling point. This feature helps in preventing any sort of damage that can be caused to the kettle including heating of the element and spilling of the water.

With the advancement in technology, you can now purchase electric tea kettles that are corded as well as cordless. The former tea kettles are available with detachable IEC C16 and C15 connections. The popularity of cordless versions of these kettles increased in the late 1980s. These versions institute two parts including a tea pot and its base which connects with the main outlet for electricity. Both of these parts have contacts with electricity which connects and supplies the power required by the kettle to boil water, when it is kept on the base.

Stove top Tea Kettles Vs Electric Kettles

• Even though stove top versions of tea kettles have been popular along tea lovers for quite a long time, electric versions of these kettles are also gaining immense popularity these days.

• Electric kettles feature auto shut off feature, which is considered better than the whistling sound as produced by the stove top models.

• The electric models offer an option to preset the boiling water temperature, which is not available with the stove top kettles.

How to Shine During a Panel-Style Job Interview

You may be forewarned-or you may be surprised when you first walk in. There they are: a panel of people waiting to interview you for a job. Your first instinct may be to panic; not only do you have to impress one interviewer, but several of them! But there are definite advantages to being interviewed by multiple people at once. The tips below will help you successfully navigate a panel interview while keeping your poise and sanity in check.

Skip the fluff. With one-on-one interviews, you have more of a chance to develop a relationship with your interviewer wherein you may begin to get a sense of what he or she wants to hear. The good news / bad news situation with a panel is that your success depends more on your job-related abilities than owning the same breed of dog as the boss. When they're comparing notes afterwards, panel members will tend to focus more fully on your qualifications, skills, and presentation.

Spread the love. It's tempting to focus more on the person who looks to be a softer touch. If one person on the panel is smiling and nodding encouragement, who would not want to talk directly to her? But it's important that you make eye contact as evenly as possible with all of the interviewers. Start and end your answer by making eye contact with the person who asked the question, but during the course of your response, look at the others present. Also, without the panel is made up of 10 people, make an effort to remember and use their names when speaking to them.

Take notes. Many people forget to bring a notepad to an interview, but it's especially important to do so when you're being interviewed by a panel. Not only can you surprptitiously jot their names down for future reference, but you can take notes on things that you'd like to remember or bring up later. When you're facing questions and information from several people, it's particularly difficult to remember who said what or what you want to follow up on. Taking notes makes you look organized and interested. Just remember to look up occasionally!

Investigate the company. If you know ahead of time who will be interviewing you, research their positions, responsibilities, and the work of their departments. You'll be more comfortable going in, and they'll be impressed at your knowledge. It's also important to gather as much information as possible about the company in general because one of them does not think to ask (to gauge your familiarity), another one will.

Take your time. Being interviewed by multiple people may mean that questions will be fired at you more quickly. Make sure that you take time to consider your answer before blurting out something awful just to keep up with their pace. A few seconds to gather your thoughts is perfectly acceptable no matter how rapid-fire their questions are.

Focus your own questions. Just like any other type of interview, you'll be given the opportunity to ask questions. When you ask, try to focus on one person-preferably the person you believe can best answer your specific question. Even if you're not sure who that is, pick one person and ask. Otherwise, you'll go to look like a distracted poodle trying to make eye contact with everyone at once.

Pay attention to interaction. One of the benefits of a panel interview for applicants is that it provides a snapshot of the company. The panel members are likely to be executives, and the upper echelon sets the tone for the entire firm. So look for signs that they're respectful of each other and knowledgeable about the company's needs. If potential colleges are on the panel, think about whether you can see yourself working with them on a day-to-day basis.

Thank them individually. When you send post-interview thank you notes (you do send them, right?), Make sure to write a separate note to each interviewer thanking her for her time and reiterating your interest in the position.