Sunlight funnel collects light from all directions

first_img Explore further Journal information: Nature Communications Researchers have designed a light-harvesting funnel that absorbs sunlight from any direction and concentrates it onto smaller areas, such as high-performance solar cells. By stacking multiple funnels, each tuned to a different wavelength of light, the researchers expect that it could be possible to convert the entire solar spectrum into electricity with high efficiency. Citation: Sunlight funnel collects light from all directions (2018, March 1) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-03-sunlight-funnel.html Tweaking quantum dots powers-up double-pane solar windows Randomly oriented light-harvesting pigments (green) funnel the sun’s energy to other molecules (red) that all have the same orientation, which diret the energy onto a photoconversion device. Credit: Pieper et al. Published in Nature Communicationscenter_img © 2018 Phys.org The scientists, led by Peter Jomo Walla at the University of Braunschweig in Germany, have published a paper on the light-harvesting funnels in a recent issue of Nature Communications.Although other solar concentrators exist that collect the sun’s energy from large areas and direct it onto smaller areas, these devices face certain limitations. For instance, they don’t work well in the shade, instead requiring direct solar irradiation, and as a result they usually rely on active sun-tracking systems. Nature has shown, however, that it’s not impossible to design a solar collector that overcomes these limitations. In living organisms that use photosynthesis, hundreds of randomly oriented pigments absorb photons even from indirect light, and funnel the energy toward a photosynthetic reaction center. Each step in this process occurs with nearly 100% efficiency.In the new study, the researchers modeled the new light-harvesting funnels on nature’s design. The devices consist of a large number of randomly oriented “donor” pigments that can absorb light from nearly all incident angles, and funnel it onto a smaller number of “acceptor” molecules that are all oriented in a single direction in order to direct the light onto a photoconversion device. This concept can reduce the intrinsic losses of previous solar concentrators to below 10%.”By minimizing intrinsic loss mechanisms of previous light concentrators, I believe we have found a concept and an affordable realization that can help lead to the more widespread use of precious high-performance photovoltaics,” Walla told Phys.org.In tests, the researchers demonstrated that the new solar concentrator absorbs approximately 99% of the incident light, with minimal losses due to reabsorption and reflection. The device also has a light redirection quantum efficiency of 80%, which the researchers note is the most important parameter as it depends on the particular wavelength of the photons. In the future, the researchers expect that these devices can be stacked on top of each other, with each device containing different pigments corresponding to different spectral ranges of sunlight. As the device materials are affordable, a stacked structure could lead to a low-cost, efficient method of collecting the sun’s energy from across the entire solar spectrum. “The pigments used in our proof-of-principle study currently cover only the blue spectral range and are not stable enough for long-term exposure to sunlight,” Walla said. “However, our concept allows for screening a multitude of additional stable pigments of different colors for their ability to act either as light-harvesters or light-redirectors. We are very enthusiastic about finding further suitable pigments and stacked architectures to ultimately cover the entire solar spectrum with high efficiency.” More information: Alexander Pieper et al. “Biomimetic light-harvesting funnels for re-directioning of diffuse light.” Nature Communications. DOI: 10.1038/s41467-018-03103-4 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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From supergiant to solarmass star Study finds HD 179821 less massive than

first_img Discovered about a century ago, HD 179821 (also designated IRAS 19114+0002) is a star in the constellation of Aquila, surrounded by a detached dust shell. The star is currently classified as a post-AGB supergiant of spectral type G5 Ia. However, although several spectroscopic observations of HD 179821 have been conducted, the exact distance to this star remains a subject of debate. Some studies suggest that it is located about 19,500 light years from the Earth, while others cite a much closer distance of some 12,700 light years. Discrepancy in the distance estimates leaves uncertainties regarding the star’s mass and evolutionary status.Gaia’s second data release, known as Data Release 2 (DR2), has the potential to resolve such uncertainties as it offers high-precision positions, parallaxes and proper motions for more than 1.3 billion sources in the sky. A team of astronomers led by Mudumba Parthasarathy of the Indian Institute of Astrophysics in Bangalore used DR2 data to obtain the parallax of HD 179821, which allowed them to make new distance calculations.The parallax of HD 179821 was found to be approximately 0.31 mas. Employing an inference procedure developed by other researchers in 2018, Parthasarathy’s team calculated that this value corresponds to a distance of about 9,600 light years. Gaia parallax also allowed them to find that the star is located some 850 light years below the Galactic plane.Furthermore, the derived distance and other parameters provided by previous studies, such as spectral type and observed V magnitude, were essential to find the absolute magnitude and bolometric luminosity of HD 179821. These values were estimated to be –5.7 and 4.3 respectively.According to the paper, the derived properties exclude the possibility that HD 179821 is a supergiant star with a mass between 19 and 30 solar masses, which was suggested by observations conducted in recent years.”The derived MV = -5.7 clearly establishes that HD 179821 is not a 30 or 19 Msun post-red supergiant. (…) The bolometric magnitude clearly excludes the possibility, defended by many authors, that it is a very massive (30 to 19 Msun) post-red supergiant star,” the astronomers underlined.They concluded that HD 179821 is a post-AGB star of mass in the range of about 0.8 solar masses, an effective temperature of 5,660 K, and a radial velocity of approximately 81.8 km/s. When it comes to the evolutionary status of HD 179821, the astronomers noted that it resulted from an intermediate mass AGB star or from a star that is at the lower limit of a super-AGB star. Its progenitor most likely had an initial main sequence mass of about four solar masses. Citation: From supergiant to solar-mass star: Study finds HD 179821 less massive than previously thought (2019, February 8) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-02-supergiant-solar-mass-star-hd-massive.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. HD 179821. Credit: Hubble Legacy Archive © 2019 Science X Network Explore further Caffau’s star is a dwarf, Gaia DR2 confirms More information: M. Parthasarathy. The puzzling high velocity G5 supergiant star HD 179821: new insight from Gaia DR2 dataarxiv.org/ftp/arxiv/papers/1901/1901.08995.pdf A post-asymptotic giant branch (post-AGB) star known as HD 179821 turns out to be significantly less massive than previously thought, according to a new study. Using new data from ESA’s Gaia satellite, astronomers found that HD 179821 is not a supergiant, which was suggested by previous observations, but is rather a solar-mass star. The finding is presented in a paper published January 28 on arXiv.org.last_img read more

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Beacon of hope

first_imgSashaying the ramp with panache, a special group of women will walk up the stage for a cause. The cause is to create breast cancer awareness by imparting knowledge about the disease. The second festival of hope – The Pink Blue Ribbon Fest comes in the wake of the rise in number of breast cancer amongst the young Indian women on 10 May. Keeping this concern up on its agenda, the Indian Cancer Society and DLF joined hands to declare 2013 as the year of breast cancer awareness. The idea is to make women respect and be conscious of their own bodies to curb the disease in its primary stages. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’In tune with the theme, the models for this festival are no ordinary women. For this noble endeavour, the festival will showcase fashion from select designers on models who are all breast cancer reconstruction patients. It also applauds the men in their lives who go out of their way to support the women they love through thick and thin.The festival comes close on heels, post the last festival of hope held on 1 and 2 December, 2012. While the last show was a success with the who’s who of Delhi walking up the ramp for the 20 new age designers, this time around the designers on board for the event include Ramonn Lamba, Pam Mehta, Gopa Kumar and many more. Adding a dash of bollywood to the fest, it will feature singer Anamika and renowned Bollywood artist Swaroop Sampat. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixAnamika will pay a tribute to Nazia Hassan, who lost her life to cancer, by singing her song Boom Boom.Promoting awareness about different types of cancer, the event shall be a mix of fashion, culture and above all, a cause. The festival is wrapped in a cultural fiesta to appeal to the masses and make them vigilant about the disease.Though not every woman needs a reconstruction or is even interested in it, but she definitely needs to know the necessary information associated with it. The goal of the festival is to reach out and significantly increase the number of patients who never get a consultation about reconstruction after going through the physical and emotional trauma of the cancer treatment. It may not be a glam show, with the overpowering glitz of Bollywood and the newest trends in fashion, but the overriding theme of awareness takes it a notch up, compared to any other fashion week.Come and a be a part of the celebration of the ones who fought, challenged and survived breast cancer.last_img read more

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Theres no set pattern for perfect sex

first_imgI’m a divorced female and I fail to understand why frustrated men always propose sex! Does being single mean available these days?Name withheld, MuradabadIdeally it shouldn’t be but most of the times ‘ideal’ situations don’t arise often enough. The society and its various animals act and react in a manner that shows their true nature. Be firm in your belief and don’t let these winds break you down. Let go of yourself and have fun their way only when you are ready. Be single and be happy in your world. Ignorance is bliss and use this till you don’t find the ‘right’ one. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’I don’t like it when my husband is friendly or is flirting with any other woman. I’m not jealous but I get very uncomfortable. How can I change him?Mrs. Patil, New DelhiIt isn’t possible to change anyone! Too much pressure will turn him sly and he might continue his traits behind your back. I suggest you to let go of the feelings that you are going through and trust your partner. Don’t restrict his movements but time and again exhibit your emotions. Don’t be pushy, but warm. Don’t react always. Space and trust will make situations healthy and peaceful. Don’t try to change anyone, it doesn’t work! Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixMy mother still treats me like a little boy! She pampers me in public and embarrasses me in front of my friends! I’m 17 and it feels horrible.Rajat, FaridabadMake her sit down and explain to her what irritates you. If need be, route it through your father. Sometimes parents always think that we are children and treat us just like they used to when were actually kids. It is her love that she showers. Don’t be rude but act mature to handle this. You are atleast lucky to have loving parents. There are many who are deprived of this. I’m getting married in January next year. I’m sleepless about my sex life. I’m virgin and have never been close to any man before.Name withheld, AgraLife will be beautiful, dear. Marriage is a joyride if both partners love and respect one another. There is enough material on the internet and great books available to educate you on sex. Don’t panic and be transparent with your partner. He will surely understand your fear and take it slow. Try and erase all fears and have a beautiful life ahead!Is it true that younger men satisfy older women better? Just curious.George, NoidaThere is a tendency amongst younger men to get attracted to older women or older men with younger woman. Young men sure have the physical capacity to satisfy a woman and some woman love to be loved by younger ones. But sex is a spontaneous act and there is no such rule of an ideal age. The chemistry between partners is most important and I personally think, there’s no set formula for perfect sex.Have a love or life query you cannot find an answer to? Send your questions to – roopshashotm@gmail.comlast_img read more

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A blend of art and coffee

first_imgThe Home of the Traveller, India’s first global home décor in association with the Embassy of Italy  hosted an exclusive art exhibition by Simona Bocchi, Italian artist and a contemporary sculptor, at their flagship store.The exhibition showcased Bocchi’s works in wide range of materials including carrara marble, bronze and jute. Originally from Monza Italy, Simona Bocchi is a specialist in contemporary sculpture; she has made Udaipur her home for the past four years working with numerous local and national level craftsmen specializing in marble carving and inlay work learning from their techniques whilst teaching new methods of sculpting. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Commenting on her exhibition, Bocchi said, ‘ I have exhibited all my fresh pieces here and I have recently started working with jute. I have also used cow dung to create some of my pieces, I feel more connected to the traditional India by using of these materials which are also environment friendly. India has inspired my art and the evolution of the ancient culture motivates my inner exploration.’The fine spring evening also saw the home décor boutique conducting tasting session of the unique blends of Italian Nero Coffee that traces its origin to the beginning of coffee culture in Italy in the 16th century when a famous merchant of Venice called Cesare Duni started to study coffee, out of curiosity about its healing properties. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThe use of unique bases lends a groovy flavour to this coffee with an elegant density and an extraordinary stability.Speaking on the occasion, director of The Home of The Traveler, JJ Valaya said, ‘The more we travelled and found ourselves inspired by culture, art and architecture belonging to different parts of the world, the stronger grew our desire to bring the most exquisite offerings to your doorsteps in one cohesive space. Housed within the flagship store is MORE@THT, a space dedicated to showcasing outstanding talent and unique craftsmanship. More is an acronym for Moving, Original, Resourceful & Experimental, all being virtues found in our special exhibitions and shows.’last_img read more

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SEC under threat by TMC Sinha

first_imgKolkata: BJP national secretary Rahul Sinha today alleged that the State Election Commissioner (SEC) has been subjected to threats by the ruling party on panchayat polls and said he should inform the court about it in a private statement. The SEC A K Singh had even told a BJP delegation that his mobile phone “is tapped and the land line calls are recorded,” Sinha told a press conference here.”The announcement of a one-phase panchayat poll on May 14 has been made under threat and intimidation by the ruling Trinamool Congress leaders and ministers. The SEC should apprise the court of the situation in a private statement to clear the air,” Sinha said. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsDemanding the May-14 panchayat poll date be scrapped, Sinha said the panchayat polls should be conducted by the SEC under the supervision of the High Court.”The entire state is looking at the High Court. The Panchayat Minister Subrata Mukherjee had said it was the duty of the SEC to ensure security during the panchayat elections.But who will ensure the security of the SEC who is under serious threat”, the former party president of West Bengal unit said. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedHe alleged that democracy was being throttled in West Bengal by the TMC which had prevented the opposition to file nomination papers in over 20,000 seats or 34 per cent of total seats in panchayats.He said till May 4, seven BJP functionaries had been killed in panchayat-related clashes, 412 party workers hospitalised and 38 functionaries missing.On deployment of central forces in the state, Sinha said even if the forces were requisitioned they would be confined to camps and not be deployed. For this reason “we call for holding of panchayat poll under the supervision of the judiciary.” To a question on demand for imposition of Central rule in state, Sinha said “we don’t want imposition of President’s Rule which will give ammunition to a discredited Trinamool Congress which is already on its way out.”He said “BJP will be gainer in a one-day poll as TMC won’t be able to carry musclemen from one part to another on a single date, but the need of the hour is to uphold the spirit of democracy.”last_img read more

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Ramayana revisited

first_imgThe fascinating story of the Ramayana is regaling a vastly different audience in a country far away from its native India, as National Gallery of Australia (NGA) in Canberra opened an exhibition of vintage miniature paintings that strings together a grand narrative of the ancient epic.Titled, The story of Rama: Indian Miniatures from the National Museum, New Delhi, the three-month show features 101 paintings created between the 17th and 19th centuries, and is the first major initiative under a recently-inked pact on culture between India and Australia. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’NGA Director Gerard Vaughan said that the exhibition of ‘vibrant and exquisite Indian miniature paintings is important’ for the gallery. “It forms part of our commitment to share the art and rich cultural heritage of India with all Australians,” he added, speaking about the finely-detailed paintings featuring a rich diversity of regional styles. Selected from the collection of National Museum (NM) of over 17,000 miniatures, the largest in the world, the NGA exhibition is open till August 23, and the entry is free for the public. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixNM Director-General Sanjiv Mittal, who was present at the function, expressed delight on behalf of his country, upon sharing with the Australians, the story of Ramayana.NM curator Vijay Kumar Mathur, who has selected the 101 paintings in a chronological progression capturing the story of the Ramayana, revealed that the collection had been pooled in from India’s northern, central and eastern territories. “These miniatures represent art from various schools of Mughal, Deccan, Pahari, Rajasthan and Central India. They stand for a matured movement that colourfully visualises the spirit of the Ramayana,” he expressed.last_img read more

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Think Mughlai and you are spoilt for choice

first_imgThough you’ll find versions of the same in other Mughlai outlets, Anadi Cabin deserves mention as perhaps the best Mughlai paratha outlet in town. Their Kabiraji cutlet is also scrumptious, to say the least. While the double egg Mughlai paratha comes for Rs 62, the Kabiraji cutlet costs Rs 80 while a plateful of yummy mutton kasha costs Rs 220. Pair the yummy mutton kasha with parathas. The place can accommodate about 30 people though the ambience is not that great but foodies swear by the Mughlai and the kasha mangsho they still serve.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Set up in the 1940s, the mutton rezala and slightly sweet parathas are to die for at Sabir’s, the vintage Mughlai outlet. Founded by Sabir Ali from Lucknow, this restaurant has been a favourite of the Mahanayak Uttam Kumar and the legendary film director, Satyajit Ray.  The story goes that Sabir Ali travelled all the way from Lucknow to Kolkata—in search of a living. He came to Kolkata in 1940 and started off as a helper in a small hotel. In 1948, he opened his restaurant at 75, Princep Street. An excellent chef himself, Ali gave the restaurant an identity. There is the famous, mouth watering rezala and paratha and a sip of their special tea is enough to leave you thrilled.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThe rezala is made with mutton breast and the ingredients used are curd, ghee, poppy seeds (posto), saffron and mace. “The proportionate mixing of the spices gives it the right taste. You will never get the taste unless you cook it in charcoal fire,” says a spokesperson. Have the mutton delicacy with their paratha. Nothing matches the duo—rezala and paratha. One can also opt for biryani along with the regular mutton or chicken delicacies. Choose from mutton kasha, bharta, chap, kebab, Kasmiri kebab. During Ramzan, their haleem and seviyaan, are in great demand.  Most of the customers are Bengalis.  Golbaari is a 109-year-old outlet in North Kolkata (Shyambazar) with a reputation for the kosha mangsho and paratha.   The gravy is finger-licking delicious but rich, albeit a little oily. Light on the pocket and savoury on the palate, one can also try their chicken cutlet, fish cutlet and mutton keema with paratha. The restaurant is not very spacious, so most of customers get their food packed. One should visit the The Great Kebab theatre at Astor’s flagship restaurant this month. Kebab-e-Que is offering an assortment of mouth watering kebabs where food lovers will be served ten variants of both vegetarian and non-vegetarian kebabs every weekend, followed by a main course meal. The treat costs an affordable Rs 749 plus taxes for two people. The kebab menu includes the Makhmali Raunake Kadak seekh Kebab or crunchy chicken seekh kebab; Hara masala tawa machli or succulent  fish marinated in special green marination and  grilled;  Tandoori murgh Pankdi kebab or drumstick of chicken marinated grounded spices cooked to perfection; mutton Shikampuri—a household recipe from Lucknow, wherein mutton mince and lentil is cooked and shallow fried while keeping the creamy centre and Lemon grass mahi tikka or  fish chunks infused with lemongrass combination of spices.The vegetarian platter includes Bhutte ke kebab or fresh baby corn and American corn with home ground spices; Dahi ke kebab or mouth-melting kebab made with hung curd and the flavour of saffron and Subj soya ki seekh or combination of soya chunk  mince and melange of vegetables. Seekh kebab is served with pudina chutney. Tandoori babri aloo or baby potato is made with spicy aromatic marination; Astor tulsi paneer tikka is made by marinating delicate cubes of creamy cottage cheese with garden fresh basil, cheese and finished in a clay oven. All kebabs are served with Kachumber Salad, vinegar onion, dahi chutney— a chutney made with yoghurt, green chilly and pudina and boondi raita. The main course includes a variety of options, followed by Indian sweets and ice cream.last_img read more

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689 endangered softshell turtles recovered

first_imgKolkata: The state Criminal Investigation Department (CID) has recovered 689 endangered turtles from an Express train and detained four persons.According to the CID, sleuths got a tip-off recently about a smuggling activity of the turtles in the state. Based on information, sleuths were able to obtain valuable information and managed to get hold of the smugglers’ identities. They came to know that the turtles would be brought from Varanasi. On Tuesday, sleuths from CID’s Durgapur division boarded Doon Express and identified the smugglers. Immediately, they were surrounded by the police. While conducting searches, the CID officers recovered 689 soft -shell river turtles from inside a sack. Immediately, the four accused persons — identified as Lachman Kumar, Raj Kumar, Sushil Kumar, Raju Kumar of Sultanpur, Uttar Pradesh, were detained and forced to get off the train. Later, the accused persons stated that they were going to dispose of those turtles at Bandel Station. The accused persons and the turtles were handed over to the Range Officer of the Forest Department for further action.last_img read more

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Dy Mayor to spearhead antidengue drive

first_imgKolkata: Deputy Mayor Atin Ghosh will lead the drives against dengue that will be launched on 21 February.Ghosh said the teams of Kolkata Municipal Corporation will first visit the houses of patients who had been afflicted with dengue in 2018. “We will inspect the house and its surroundings. We have prepared a list of 47 areas of which 20 are highly vulnerable and 20 are vulnerable. Not only the KMC staffs but also private agencies and NGOs are welcome to join our drives. To make dengue drives a success there should be cooperation between the civic staffs and common people,” Ghosh said. Also Read – Bose & Gandhi: More similar than apart, says Sugata BoseThe KMC will carry out the drives in three phases. The first phase will start from February 21 and will continue till June. The second phase will start in July and continue till October while the third phase which will be a follow up phase will start in November and continue till December. Continuous drives against dengue have helped the KMC to bring down the number of cases in 2018 to one third. It may be mentioned that KMC is successful in eradicating malignant malaria which had taken the form of an epidemic in the early 1990s by identifying the areas and then conducting the drives regularly. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe KMC team that is engaged in conducting drives comprise of health, building and solid waste management department officials and staffs. Ghosh said councilors would be invited to join the drives along with the Borough Committee chairman. The KMC had launched a massive campaign to create awareness against Dengue on February 2 when 144 rallies had been taken out all over the city. The central rally was taken out from the KMC headquarters and it was led by the Mayor Firhad Hakim. Through the rallies the civic authorities sought cooperation of the people. Ghosh said the campaign and rallies have proved to be very effective and KMC is going to follow this method. The KMC has 16 dengue testing laboratories where blood samples are tested free of cost.last_img read more

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Make your home sparkle this festive season

first_imgThis festive season, make sure you are adding spark not just to your clothes but homes too. Experts suggest how. -Go bold with gold: With festive season and Diwali round the corner, sprinkle some shimmer. This season, you can experiment with bolder colours like deep red, burnt orange and sunny mustard. Pair these up with cushions in woven textiles and traditional motifs like paisleys. Try to use matt gold. It’s all about mixing of pastel colours with matt gold, matt champagne and matt rose gold with blush pink. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf-Diyas: Lighting diyas is another most ancient custom in India, because when there was no electricity and artificial lights, diyas were used to brighten up the homes during darkness. -Hanging lamps: Hanging lamps always create an oriental atmosphere. It is energising to see these lamps on a terrace, balconies or entrance foyer areas or even in room corners. There are cork finish, cement finish, textured handmade paper lamps and plastic fibers and jute paper lamps. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive-Wall decor: Decorative mirrors and art are easy options for dressing the walls and accessorising corner tables and consoles. -Antiques and figurines: A collection of antiques and figurines kept in one corner can look very impressive. It can be an assortment of colours, sizes and so on. -Paint a pop of colour: Sometimes a little contrast can do amazing things. If your room is feeling stale and monotonous, go and pick a colour that contrasts with the colour scheme you have been witnessing for a long time in your space. -Fill an empty corner: The best way is to declutter and then start filling again. You would be able to junk a lot of stuff and fill corners or blank spaces very creatively with various sized frames, lamps and so on. -Add layer to your lighting: Home or office requires the correct amount of and relevant light. Bathrooms where we groom need ample lighting especially around the mirror. Table lamps, elaborate ceiling lights can serve the purpose of aesthetics.last_img read more

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Weapons reveal how Ötzi the 5300yearold ice mummy lived

first_imgÖtzi – a mummified corpse – was discovered in 1991 as the ice receded in the Ötztal Alps, hence his nickname. The body was originally believed to be that of a mountaineer who had recently died, or even that of an Italian soldier from the First World War.However, when archeologist Konrad Spindler, at the University of Innsbruck, examined it and a number of objects found with the body, he found it to be “about four thousand years old,” based on one of the axes that was found among Ötzi’s belongings.Naturalistic reconstruction of Ötzi – South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology (2011). Photo by Thilo Parg CC BY SA 3.0Almost immediately the body drew much attention. For starters, it was incredibly well preserved.The ice pocket into which Ötzi had fallen was so protective that it kept his brain, internal organs, some hair and one of his eyeballs completely intact.The Ötzi memorial near Tisenjoch.Since its discovery, Ötzi has been thoroughly measured, analyzed, examined, x-rayed, and dated. When he was briefly “thawed out” in 2010, scientists were even able to retrieve some red blood cells – the oldest ever identified.Remarkably, during all this intensive investigation of whom he was, scientists realized, thanks to a rare mutation known as G-L91, that Ötzi has living relatives in Austria’s Tyrol region. Cousins, only 10,000 to 12,000 years apart.Iceman’s copper axe from Südtiroler Archäologiemuseum. Photo by АлександрЛаптев CC BY SA 4.0It was also discovered that this 46-year-old man had a number of health issues, including gallstones, worn joints, a growth on his foot, as well as worms and possibly Lyme disease. However, this was not what killed him. He was murdered.Ötzi was found with a wound in his shoulder, as well as a head contusion. He had deep cuts on his hands, and the arrow flinthead had lodged in his shoulder (it was found in 2001), severing a major artery and causing him to quickly bleed to death.Reconstruction of Ötzi’s knife and scabbard. Photo by Archaoutor CC BY SA 4.0Scientists noticed a clotting chemical that shows up in human blood after a wound is inflicted, but disappears quickly as well. However, the fact that it was found in Ötzi implies that he died shortly after receiving the wound.Disturbing occasions when ancient Egyptian curses seemed to come trueIn addition to the arrow wound, when he was examined by a CAT scan in 2013, researchers found a contusion at the back of his head, but they weren’t sure if it was caused by a fall after being hit by the arrow, or from another weapon.Otzi arrowhead. Photo by Ursula Wierer CC BY 4.0The cut on his right hand had not yet healed, indicating that he may have been in a fight a few hours or even days prior to being shot with the arrow.Scientists have determined recently that Ötzi was right-handed, and being injured would have made it harder for him to prepare or hold his weapons to defend himself from further attack. This may explain why the bows and arrows that were found with the body were not yet finished.A replica of Ötzi’s copper axe. Photo by Bullenwachter CC BY 3.0While the arrow would have caused massive bleeding, researchers found that the shaft had been removed before Ötzi died. What is more, the undigested meal of bread, sloes, and deer found in his stomach suggests that Ötzi was ambushed.Reconstruction of a neolithic birch bark vessel found with Ötzi. Photo by Xenophon CC BY SA 3.0As much as we know about Ötzi, one thing about his death remains a mystery: motive. Ötzi was likely on the run from someone, or several people, but who or why we will never know.It wasn’t a robbery – a valuable copper ax was found with the body. DNA analyses performed in the last few years have revealed blood from at least four other people on Ötzi’s equipment, including his knife, two samples on an arrowhead, and his coat.Otzi the Iceman. Photo by Thilo Parg CC BY SA 3.0Researchers have interpreted that perhaps he carried a wounded comrade over his shoulder, hence the blood on his coat, and he may have killed two people with the same arrow. Was his death revenge for theirs?A shoe as worn in prehistoric times, BATA shoe museum – modern reproduction. Photo by Sheila Thomson CC BY 2.0In 2011, researchers used 3D images of the preserved remains to recreate an incredibly lifelike reconstruction of Ötzi’s face. Since then, his entire body has been reconstructed.Related story from us: 1st century A.D. mosaics and paintings buried under volcano damage now being revealed and restored with X-ray technologyHe was 5 feet 3 inches tall, and weighed around 110 pounds (50 kilograms). With brown hair, deep-set eyes, and a long nose, he has even been said to resemble Harvy Keitel. Ötzi has been on display since 1998 at the South Tyrol Museum of Archaeology in Bolzano, Italy.Patricia Grimshaw is a self-professed museum nerd, with an equal interest in both medieval and military history. She received a BA (Hons) from Queen’s University in Medieval History, and an MA in War Studies from the Royal Military College of Canada, and completed a Master of Museum Studies at the University of Toronto before beginning her museum career. She has lived and traveled all over Canada and Europe.last_img read more

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A Man who Bought an Unlimited Fly Pass Used it so Much

first_imgEveryone has a friend who’s managed to get bumped up to First Class once, maybe twice, even three times, without paying. If you never have, it’s hard to imagine what luxuries await you in those desperately sought-after seats on the other side of the flight attendants’ curtain. A select few get to ride in those seats on every flight, but luck isn’t always what gets them there. If you’re willing to pay a hefty price tag up front, the seat is yours. But just how much is too much?Depending on where you’re flying to, Business Class let alone First Class ticket prices can put you out a few thousand dollars at least. How much would you be willing to pay for unlimited flights?It’s hard to imagine what luxuries await you in those desperately sought-after seats on the other side of the flight attendants’ curtainIn October 1987, an investment banker named Steve Rothstein paid $233,509.93 (discounted from the full price of $250,000 thanks to frequent flier miles he had already racked up) for an American Airlines “unlimited AAirpass”. A couple of years later he shelled out an additional $150,000 for a companion ticket, so he’d always be able to bring a friend. Over the years he’s traveled upwards of 14,000,000 miles during 10,000 flights.The program was launched in 1981 as a means to secure a much-needed cash-injection, writes The Hustle, after the airline “had been hit hard by the Airline Deregulation Act of 1978.” It offered holders unlimited first-class travel, for life. During the span of his AAirpass, Rothstein managed to rack up 14,000,000 air miles — all of which he offered out to strangers who’d found themselves stranded in an airport, half-way from home.American Airlines Boeing 777-200ERIt all came to an abrupt end in 2008, at Chicago O’Hare International Airport, when American Airlines claimed fraud and finally put an end to his free flying. They managed to get him through claims of flying under fake names — if he wasn’t sure who he was bringing along on a trip at the time of booking, Mr. Rothstein would give “Bag Rothstein” as a pseudonym.After being handed a letter informing him of the termination of his AAirpass, Rothstein was shocked. He told the New York Post, “I feel betrayed. They took away my hobby and my life. They essentially destroyed my persona.” His adventures cost American Airlines around $21 million, according to the company.Related Video: Lockheed SR-71 Blackbird – The World’s Fastest PlaneIn Illinois, a federal judge ruled the revocation legal. Rothstein tried to gain an appeal, but the company ended up filing for bankruptcy in 2011 which caused delays. The two parties ended up settling outside of the courtroom. He’s not the only one with a ticket to the world. As of 2012, American Airlines had 66 customers who maintain their AAirpass which end up costing millions of dollars each year for the company.Rothstein managed to rack up 14,000,000 air milesThough the AAirpass program is still in business, it no longer offers unlimited, lifetime passes. The last time it tried was in the 2004 Neiman Marcus Christmas catalog for a kingly $3 million each, plus an additional $2 million for a companion pass. None sold.While the world was still at his fingertips, Mr. Rothstein traveled globally, visiting countries like England 500 times and Japan 120. His daughter attended a boarding school in Switzerland and he regularly took his son to baseball games across America, thanks to the AAirpass. He’d regularly visit Brown University in Providence, Rhode Island, to spend time with an old college friend. One time he flew to Detroit, rented a car, and drove to Canada to have some lunch and do a bit of shopping, flying back home in time for dinner.Mr. Rothstein’s adventures cost American Airlines around $21 millionIn July 2004 he flew a total 18 times. Destinations included Maine, Denver, Los Angeles, Nova Scotia, and London. Mr. Rothstein isn’t alone in the ex-AAirpass club, however. A similar ousting occurred to Jacques E. Vroom Jr., a marketing executive from Texas. He bought his AAirpass two years after Rothstein but found his unlimited flights terminated the same year.Read another story from us: John Denver’s Fateful Last Flight – An Illegal Takeoff on an Experimental PlaneToday, AAirpass offers memberships between $10,000 and $30,000. Benefits of the program include special, faster security lines and loads of upgrades beyond Economy imagination. They tailor the program to businesses who commonly send employees across the globe, offering multiple staff members to share the travel pass, presumably under legitimate names.last_img read more

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Colin interviews NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell on Brady the Patriots and the

first_imgRoger Goodell joined The Herd today, to speak with Colin in a rare radio interview ahead of the Patriots/Falcons Super Bowl in Houston. They discussed a wide range of topics that every NFL fan has on their mind.No topic was off limits, from Tom Brady and the Patriots, to the league’s handling of the Chargers exit from San Diego to Los Angeles. Goodell even discussed how he would react if he has to hand the Lombardi Trophy to Tom Brady in Houston.“Tom Brady is one of the all-time greats, he has been for several years. He’s on the precipice of, at least potentially, winning his 5th Super Bowl ring. He’s an extraordinary player, a great performer, and a sure-fire hall of famer. So, it would be an honor.”The scouts and draft analysts are all over the place on Deshaun Watson. Even after beating Bama in the national championship game, some have him ranked as the third best quarterback in the draft. Dabo Sweeney just made the comment at the Senior Bowl that if teams pass on Watson, they’re passing on Michael Jordan.Colin has also struggled to project Watson, and he still has questions about his size, and whether he can throw the ball down the field if he goes to a cold weather city like Cleveland.He does like that he has 36 career starts, and went through a list of quarterbacks with over 30 starts that includes Matt Ryan, Russell Wilson, Matt Stafford, Peyton Manning, and Dak Prescott. Busts Mark Sanchez and Akili Smith had 15 starts. Colin thinks the stats show that he has faced a variety of coaches, defenses, and environments.  It’s inarguable that he’s succeeded in most of the biggest moments.“I have seen Deshaun play Alabama, Urban Meyer, shootouts with Louisville, face Brian Kelly and Notre Dame, Bob Stoops with Oklahoma, Virginia Tech. A tremendously gifted UNC program. And he has generally been better in the biggest games.”Colin thinks that Ben Roethlisberger’s recent comments where he spoke of retirement and criticized the team were intended for the front office’s ears. Colin observed that the varying rates of physical decline between Roethlisberger and Tom Brady have as much to do with their teams’ offensive philosophies as it does with regenerative pajamas.The Patriots offense is mostly based on the quick game, and Brady almost never takes a seven step drop. He gets the ball out quick and mostly avoids severe punishment. Contrast that with a Steelers offense that is, and has always been based on the vertical passing game.This means that Roethlisberger takes deeper drops to wait for the routes to develop and takes more hits. If the Steelers want to keep him around for a couple more years they should do him a favor and switch to the quick game. Again, it comes down to coaching, and you know Colin’s position on Mike Tomlin.“The distinct, academic culture of New England has saved, and elevated their primary asset, Tom Brady. The home run, big play, over the top culture of Pittsburgh has put their primary asset in the cross-hairs.”Guests:Roger Goodell – NFL Commissioner joins the show via phone to speak with Colin on a wide range of NFL topics, including the Chargers move to Los Angeles; the perception that he’s anti-Patriots; if there is tension between he and Robert Kraft; and how he would react to handing the Lombardi to Tom Brady.Cris Carter – FS1 NFL analyst and Pro Football Hall of Famer is in-studio to give his reaction to Colin’s interview with Roger Goodell; why he thinks he’s always in a no-win situation; why Patriots fans that think the league is after them are delusional; and why he is a believer in Deshaun Watson as an NFL quarterback prospect.Chris Broussard – FS1 NBA Analyst is in-studio to react to Charles Barkley’s comments that Kawhi Leonard is the second best player in the NBA; if he agrees with Colin that LeBron should take a pay cut if he wants a deeper bench; and if the Lakers are as far away from playoff contention as Colin thinks.Greg Jennings – FS1 NFL Analyst is in-studio  to react to Colin’s interview with Roger Goodell; where he agreed and disagreed with the commissioner; why he disagrees with Colin’s take that diva wide receivers are overrated; and why blocking is overrated.last_img read more

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Colins Blazin 5 Podcast for NFL Week 16

first_imgIt’s time for Colin’s Blazin’ 5 Prediction Podcast and his weekly sit down with RJ Bell from Pregame.com to see where there’s agreement and disagreement from the wiseguys on his NFL Week 16 Blazin’ 5 picks.Colin is coming off a meh 1-2-2 week, but still sits at a cool 40-27-3 on the year. This week he likes the Bills and Seahawks as road dogs; the Jags and Rams as road favorites; and the Saints getting points at home against the Falcons.Here are Colin’s Week 16 Blazin’ 5 plays. So, what do the wiseguys say?Bills (+12) at Patriots Falcons at Saints (-5.5)Jags (-4) at 49ersRams (-6.5) at TitansSeahawks (+5) at CowboysThe Blazin’ 5 Prediction Podcast is available every Saturday through the end of the football season. Download and subscribe to it exclusively at TheHerdNow.com, iHeart Radio, Google Play, or iTunes. Don’t be a mark!last_img read more

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Mike DAntoni deserves credit for revolutionizing the NBA

first_imgMike D’Antoni deserves credit for revolutionizing the NBAMany of the inventors of famous products aren’t the ones that ultimately make money off their breakthrough idea. In sports, coaches that introduce innovations don’t ultimately win titles with them, either.Much like Don Corryell with his innovations in the NFL passing game with the Chargers, or Chip Kelly with the no huddle offense at Oregon, Mike D’Antoni is the godfather of the modern NBA run up tempo, three-point heavy style. D’Antoni has taken heat for not winning in the playoffs, and like Corryell and Kelly, he’s probably not going to win a title with his groundbreaking idea. But he still deserves credit for how his system has influenced the entire NBA. College basketball players are still the biggest targets for game-fixingThe Supreme Court’s landmark decision opening the gates for sports gambling, and many are speculating on the potential negative impact it could have on sports. Metta World Peace shared a story about a time he was offered $35,000 to fix a game at St. John’s that illustrates the potential danger.Colin agrees with the Supreme Court ruling, but sees the Metta World Peace scenario of a broke college player being enticed to fix a game as far more likely than a pro risking their career to swing a line. It’s hardly a new concept, and won’t happen any more frequently because of the court decision. Also:– The Giants could be the surprise team in the NFLGuests:Chris Mannix – Yahoo! Sports NBA Writer talks Celtics future; if Boston is in play for Kawhi Leonard; and how Kyrie Irving will fit in when he returns.Daryl Morey – Rockets GM talks Western Conference Finals; building a team to beat the Warriors; and why NBA defenses are to blame for the advent of iso ball.Joe Vardon – Cavs Beat Writer joins the show discusses dealing with LeBron on a daily basis, and why the Cavs are quietly confident headed into Game 3 against Boston.Chris Broussard– FS1 NBA Analyst is in-studio explaining why the toll LeBron takes on a franchise is worth it; and when he first heard of LeBron as a journalist in Akron.last_img read more

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Work Tech Meet Home Tech

first_imgMarch 17, 2006 Register Now » Working Hard or Hardly Working? Free Webinar | Sept 5: Tips and Tools for Making Progress Toward Important Goals Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Cohen’s home office doesn’t look like a home office. With its comfy couch, it also doubles as a TV room. And he uses a streaming music device to play all the music on his PC through the stereo downstairs.In the gaming realm, Cohen has the media extender software to go with his Xbox, which is in another room entirely. However, the new Xbox 360 comes with extender technology already built in. It allows users to view Windows Media Center content, including video, through their Xbox console.It’s not all fun and games in Cohen’s home office–there’s some serious work being done, too. His PC–which is connected to a shared multifunction laser printer and fax machine–just happens to be the hub for his home entertainment as well.On the GoCohen uses the Orb Networksservice to give wings to the media he usually accesses from his home PC. The service works with any media.”At work, I often watch the news by connecting to my home PC through My Orb,” says Cohen. He can also watch on his stereo-capable SMT-5600 Audiovoxphone. “When I’m stuck in airports, I log in and watch TV on my phone.” The video iPod also satisfies the demand to carry moving pictures with you. And Epsonhas jumped in with its P-4000 Multimedia Storage Viewer. With these devices, home entertainment is no longer confined to your home.Diving InConverging your work and entertainment technology is sure to make your life easier and more enjoyable. “My favorite [perk] is having one system for everything. I don’t want it to look like a techie house,” says Cohen. “I like the technology to be hidden, but to work well.”What all this innovation boils down to is control. “It’s part of the entrepreneurial spirit,” says Taylor. “[Entrepreneurs have] always wanted to be able to control things–their destinies and their businesses. And now they’re going to be able to control their entertainment.”Windows ShoppingLongtime rivals have kissed and made up a new Treo. Palmhas shown its own OS the door and invited Windows Mobile 5.0 to come on over. Treo on Windows marries Palm’s popular Treo form factor to the undeniably familiar Windows interface and applications. A pocket-size PC now powered by an Intel processor, it embraces Microsoft Office essentials like Excel, Internet Explorer Mobile, Outlook, PowerPoint and Word. It even cozies up to Exchange Server 2003. Available exclusively through Verizon, the new smartphone can tap Verizon’s speedy EV-DO network, further blurring the lines between office, home, phone and computer.Pixie PrinterIf you need output on the go, the Brother MPrintMW-140BT can deliver quick black-and-white prints from the palm of your hand. This wireless thermal printer costs $399 (street), is only about a half-inch thick and weighs just 10 ounces. The MPrint uses cassettes with A7-size paper (4.1 by 2.9 inches), two-ply carbons or labels. But standard-size documents are converted to A7 in software, making this printer perfect not only for snapshots, but also for quick documents from your laptop beamed via a Bluetooth connection. The MPrint’s lithium-ion battery is good for up to 100 continuous pages between recharging.Walk This WayWhat Sony once did for radios, it now wants to do for phones. Push a button on the side of the Sony Ericsson W800i Walkman Phone, and it will play your MP3s. Push twice to listen to FM radio–a rarity even among MP3 players. There are the usual radio tuning features to navigate to your favorite radio station, and a 512MB Memory Stick will bolster W800i’s internal 34MB storage. Flip it sideways to get a great 2-megapixel camera with shutter button and 4x digital zoom that feels like a stand-alone digital camera. Oh, and W800i makes phone calls, too. Entrepreneurs aren’t nine-to-five types of people. When you run a business, work shows up at all hours. Work life and home life blur together. And now work technology and home technology are teaming up to make business owners’ lives more functional, conven-ient and enriching. It’s the long-awaited conver-gence of computer and entertainment networks. Imagine your computer talking to your TV and stereo, beaming your MP3 collection into the home office and recording your favorite news program for you to watch later. Putting all that technology together can seem a little daunting, but recent innovations make setup simpler than ever. We caught up with an entrepreneur who dived right in to computer/entertainment convergence. Let’s check out his home system to see what sort of technology you might find useful. Nerve Center Ephraim Cohen founded his New York City PR firm, The Fortex Group , in 2003, and he’s been plenty busy ever since. His business extends from his office to his house–and so does his entertainment. “At the center, there’s a PC with a fast processor, a 250GB hard drive and the newest version of Microsoft Media Center. It’s the nerve center of everything I do,” says Cohen, 35. He also fitted his PC with a TV tuner and a 19-inch flat-panel monitor so he can watch his favorite shows in comfort.”Having one strong desktop PC to act as the central server for everything makes life easier because it’s easier to back up and coordinate everything you have at home,” says Cohen, whose company had $1.2 million in 2005 sales. The media center concept lets Cohen control everything from home movies to audio to photos with a remote control. He even admits to watching recorded news programs while he works. TiVo is a popular way to digitally record TV programs, and now multipurpose computers with digital video recorders are catching up to the trend.Over at Intel , the longstanding PC media center concept is evolving into a more capable feature set called ViiV. ViiV (rhymes with five) is a combination of hardware and software in one easy-to-use PC setup. “It can run your business,” says Michael Taylor, marketing man-ager for Intel Digital Home, “and you can use it for all [forms of] entertainment–music, video, pictures or accessing unique content on the internet.”ViiV is a sign of the simplification of the computing and entertainment convergence process. “Everything will be customized to work at a 10-foot user interface,” says Taylor. The aim is to make managing your digital media as straightforward as changing the channel on your TV. Networking Every nerve center needs a network. Co-hen went with a high-speed, MIMO-fortified 802.11g router that turns his whole house into an extension of his media center PC. MIMO beams data farther and faster than 802.11g, enabling the new convergence technologies without the hassle of stringing wires between rooms.Cohen’s technology system includes VoIP. He uses his laptop, wireless network and cable internet connection to place business phone calls to Europe and Asia without racking up huge charges.Among the other snazzy extras you can add to your network is the Netgear Storage Central SC101. This stand-alone connects to your network wirelessly, but shows up in Windows as an attached hard drive. It can handle your photos, videos, games and music, as well as your business documents and records. It also lets you make certain files private so your family can share the device. An alternative is Iomega’s StorCenter Network Hard Drive, which is touted as a multimedia hub and offers a tera-byte of space. A host of other servers and storage solutions are hitting the market, so keep an eye out for the latest options.And don’t forget backup. “My files from work get backed up to the PC, and that PC gets backed up to another drive,” says Cohen. He uses a Mirra backup device, as well as a program called FolderShare to sync between his home PC and laptop so he can work on either with ease. As entrepre-neurs pile up memory-hungry media files, attaching storage to your network will be a must. 7 min read Attend this free webinar and learn how you can maximize efficiency while getting the most critical things done right.last_img read more

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How to Install a Firewall

first_img Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. It seems like every day we hear of a computer security breach in the news: A hacker who has stolen records from one company or another; an ex-employee who remotely accessed a supposedly “off limit” company network and stole or destroyed data–and this is only the incidents we hear about. But like the more general crime news we hear, see or read about in the media, there’s much more that happens that we don’t hear about.Your business is no exception when it comes to online security, and as we speak, I’m sure hackers are testing your network or that of your competitor or partner for security weaknesses. How can you protect your business? How can you be secure? Unfortunately, you can never be 100% secure, but there is something you can do to ensure your computers and network are as secure as possible.A firewall is one of the best security roadblocks you can have and will help protect your computer from the malicious threats of the online world. In addition to a firewall, it’s important to always back up your data and have an anti-virus program installed on your computers and network as well (e.g., e-mail, file server and other entry points).Firewalls carefully scan each port on your computer to ensure the packets of data going through them comply with the specifications you have set. For example, maybe you don’t allow instant messaging (IM). Your firewall will ensure that no instant messages go in or out of your computer system. Why would you want to block IM? Maybe you want to prevent employees from using it to chat with friends and family instead of working. Furthermore, many online attacks happen through IM, so blocking IM is one way to bolster security.Firewalls act like security guards at a big building. There are many people going in and out of the building, but not each person is treated the same. Some people have full access to the building, while others need to be escorted by a staff member. Others might have to deliver certain packages to the back of the building. In the same way, a firewall can be configured to block (or allow) access to certain websites, “protocols” (the language different computer services use to speak to one another) or even certain words or phrases.There are two kinds of firewalls: software and hardware appliances.Software firewalls are installed on your computer system and are ideal for ensuring that every computer (including your in-office staff and remote employees) has a basic level of protection against threats when they’re online.A hardware appliance is best for installing at each entry point to your corporate network (such as your cable or DSL connection). Since it’s an appliance, it’s always on, isn’t dependent on a computer being turned on or off, won’t crash due to your operating system not working right, and is often more robust and powerful than software-based firewalls.Windows XP comes with a free Windows firewall (software based). If you have an older version of Windows or if you want to use a different firewall than what Microsoft provides, you can download a free firewall program from Download.com (a great resource for a lot of free or trial software) or purchase one from a number of vendors. (Type “Firewall” into any search engine and you’ll be given a list of many software and hardware firewall vendors). While Microsoft’s built-in firewall is “good,” there are more robust firewalls (usually that blend anti-virus, anti-phishing and other technologies) that you can purchase for better protection.When installing a firewall, keep these things in mind:It’s best to have a security expert configure your hardware firewalls to harden your network as much as possible. The configuration of your firewall is what will make it strong or weak.If your firewall is too secure, you might inhibit users from doing their work, so there must be a careful blend of being very secure but not too secure.Software or firewall? There’s a debate as to which one is best, and it’s best to use a mix of both. Have a software firewall on every computer. Have a hardware firewall on each main internet connection (such as your DSL line), or if you have several servers and want to boost protection even more, have one on each server. Register Now » Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global June 19, 2006 4 min readlast_img read more

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Would adding Web 20 technology help my web design business

first_imgAugust 8, 2007 Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global It depends on what your business objectives are and in what direction you’re taking the business. Web 2.0 technology is great – that’s my area of expertise – but, it can be a distraction if not implemented correctly or for the right reasons.Good luck! min read Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Register Now »last_img read more

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Six Tips for Mobile Marketing to Engage Customers

first_imgAugust 23, 2011 Enroll Now for Free 4 min read People love their smartphones. Whether you’re walking down the street or inside a shopping mall, sitting in a coffee shop or at the airport, half the people around you are looking down at their cellphones.Eighty-three percent of American adults own a cell phone, and 42 percent of them own a Blackberry, iPhone, or a similar smartphone, according to a recent Pew Internet Project report. The study also found that 87 percent of smartphone users access the Internet or email on their device. Two-thirds of smartphone users do so daily. Increasingly, just as how the home broadband connection remains always on, the mobile connection seems to be ever present.Today’s apps-savvy consumers want business information delivered concisely and available for reading on the fly. Thanks to the explosion of Internet-enabled mobile devices, you and your customers can communicate on the go. Here are six easy ways to deliver on mobile devices marketing that encourages customer interaction.1. Make Your Emails Mobile-FriendlyWhereas delivering email marketing that can be read on mobile devices used to be optional for a business, now it’s essential. Keep a message’s subject line short and place high up in the message your brand name, the offer, and the call to action.Related: Your Customers Are Talking. Are You Listening?Keep your email design simple and light on text, and offer a link to your company’s website or Facebook page so a reader can find out more.2. Give Mobile Customers What They Need Forty percent of U.S. smartphone owners compare prices on their mobile device while shopping inside a store, according to HubSpot, an Internet marketing firm in Cambridge, Mass. If you do not optimize your site for mobile users, you may miss sales opportunities. The most sought-after information (a company’s hours, locations, and directions) and popular features should be front and center where customers can easily find them. If mobile consumers cannot find the information they need to guide their purchasing decisions, they may click — but then take their business elsewhere.3. Invite List Sign-ups via Text Message and Quick-Response CodesCustomers entering into your retail establishment probably are carrying their cellphones on them. Build your contact list by inviting patrons to send a text message (if your email service provider offers this feature) or scan a QR code. Put a sign at your cash register to encourage such activity while the shopping experience is still fresh.Related: Three Ways to Spark Engaging Social ConversationsA savings coupon or special offer can sweeten the deal for any customers who sign up via text message or QR code. And you end up building your list without having to manually enter email addresses after deciphering handwriting on a sign-up sheet.4. Build Your Fan BaseYour socially active customers have a Facebook or Twitter app loaded on their smartphones. A sign or poster that encourages them to connect with you in the social media sphere can propel significant growth of your network — and expand your company’s visibility to the contacts of your new followers. Be sure to give customers a good (and fun) reason to like or follow you.5. Tap Location-Based ServicesIf you run a brick-and-mortar business or host an event, encourage people to check in on location-based services like Foursquare, Gowalla, or Where. You will gain information about your regular customers and how often they visit you. It also lets your customers share information and tips about your business with others. A unique special offer can encourage these regulars to check in more often.6. Encourage Reviews on the RunEncourage customers to share their thoughts about their experience while they are still at our place of business. Post a sign that says, “How’d we do? Let us know!” You can even direct customers to sites like Yelp, Where, Google Places, or TripAdvisor, where you would like them to offer reviews of your business. Make sure you post your company’s Twitter handle, so customers can include it in reviews and follow your business on Twitter for updates. Be sure you stay on top of any customer reviews posted about your company.More mobile technologies are springing up, enabling businesses and customers to stay connected, regardless of location. Remember: All these gadgets and apps can support your marketing but they should not drive it. You still need to focus your message on how your company provides great products and services. Know who and where your customers are. Then bring the goods to them. Mobile strategies let you package your marketing to better reach them.Related: Five Ways to Win a Sale Using Your Customer’s Mobile Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience. Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Nowlast_img read more

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