How to Quickly Learn Guitar for Beginners

Basically there are lots of materials that must be studied to learn the guitar. Some different areas of study range from introduction to tones, introduction to chords, guitar picking techniques, introduction to guitar fret board and much more. Moreover if you want to learn how to read the sheet music and notes, it will take more time for you to master these skills, but it will be worth it.

You may ask why learning a guitar really takes this long? Is it really that difficult? Of course! If you are serious about learning how to play the guitar, then you need to do your homework. It will be different if you just use the guitar to entertain yourself. Therefore, to be able to learn and understand exactly how to play this instrument, you have to prepare yourself and to be dedicated to master it.

Basically there is no short cut to learn how to play the guitar quickly. But there are some tips that you can apply in order to learn to play the guitar well and 'faster'.

1. Prepare everything.

Start by preparing everything you need. Start by buying a guitar, buying a pick, buy amps, and all other important things that you need for you to learn. Having all these set up will also help boost your interest in learning this kind of instrument.

2. Strengthen Your Intention.

Once you have all the equipment, now it is the time for you increase your intention to learn. No need to be pessimistic because you have never played a guitar before. All guitarists started studying guitar from zero to hero. One way to strengthen your intention is to hire a guitar tutor or attend guitar lessons. This can also help you get inspired by other people.

3. Set the time for practice.

You might have your own job and only have a small time to spare for other activities. But if you are really that interested in learning to play the guitar, you need to set aside a specific time to practice. Therefore, it appropriate for you to take a moment to think about your training schedule. Later that schedule will make you more organized and consistent in practice. You can also talk to your tutor for the most convenient time for you to practice.

4. Start practicing!

After preparing everything, setting your schedule, and beginning guitar lessons, you can start learning to play this wonderful instrument. These tips will be your head start on your guitar journey to improve your skills. At first you may feel bored but the more you learn, the more you will get interested in harnessing your skills.

Gathering of Information: The Silent Spies in the Internet and in Telecommunications

Anyone who is regularly online will have seen it more than once, if they're really interested in Social Media Networking, they'll have seen it tens of times over the last few years: Big Brother. Stories, articles, essays and a whole mess of scaremongering about what happens each and every time a person logs onto the Internet. Someone, somewhere is watching over them, peeking over their shoulder and following each and every move whilst they are surfing. They know what has been purchased on Amazon, what is searched for on Google, each status update on Facebook and Twitter. The curtains may have been drawn and the door locked, but no one is ever alone on the Internet.

In Europe and the United States there is a great deal of legal pressure on politicians, not so much pressure from the public because they know better, but from civil rights organizations and the like, to limit the ability of some web sites to gather information. Much has been written about Facebook and Google gathering information, and there have been many diverging opinions: the information is entered voluntarily, so be it! It is, however, much more than that.

The Internet is the biggest potential marketplace ever. The discussions might be about markets such as China and the United States, about emerging markets and First and Third World markets but they have nothing compared to the potential of the Internet, because the Internet brings every single country together, almost into one melting pot, and has all the possibilities at anyone's fingertips for exploitation. Not necessarily in a bad way, not all exploitation is bad, but in a way which could define how the market evolves, what offers are made and how web sites and online stores are designed and geared up for the customer of the future.

In short, someone out there is gathering information on you and your habits.

Most of the information being gathered is harmless. It is information individuals have entered themselves - such as by Facebook - and it is information on what is needed, desired or enjoyed - such as by Google, Yahoo, Bing and any other search engine one might care to mention. It is information about what has bought - where else can Amazon get its recommendations from other than from individual buying habits?

And the rest of the information?

The rest is a gathering of individual surfing habits. Which web sites have been visited and how long has the visitor stayed there? Where did they come from and where did they go? Which page did they land on and which search words did they use to get there?

What would happen if a single person or a company could use all this technology at their fingertips to see what each person does on other sites? What if they could set up a little bit of spying software on another site and see whether someone visits when that site has no other connection to them?

This has happened here from the moment a link was made to this site. Not in a bad way, but everyone visiting this page has been checked by others. They've been checked by Google (Google Analytics), by Alexa, by Facebook. Even if the visitor doesn't have a Facebook account, they've been checked and the visit logged.

Why and how?

Why. Facebook is a site which gathers all manner of information to advance its own advertising strategy. A person doesn't need to be registered for Facebook to want to know what interests them, to be able to build up a global picture of what is popular and what is on the way out. Each time there is a Facebook symbol on a web site, even if no one presses Like, they've been seen, their visit has been noted. The page has loaded in a browser and the Like button has been loaded direct from Facebook.

How do webmasters know when others are hot linking to their photographs and images? The visit, on another web site, has been logged and, eventually, evaluated.

And when a person thinks that they've only been surfing safe sites? Think again.

A few days ago I installed a new tracking checker on my personal system. It tells me how many other companies are watching my every move, how many spies there are out there. I went through my normal surfing routine, a little bit of Twitter, a touch of Facebook, some StumbleUpon, a hint of Google+ and a few sites with adult content. The result after only two days, that is perhaps seven or eight hours of actual surfing from one web site to another, was seven hundred and sixty-eight hits by Facebook alone.

Let's get one thing right out of the way: in the majority of cases Facebook, and all the others tracking, do not know who an individual is. They can't put a name to their activities, or a face. That is, unless they happen to be logged in to Facebook while surfing elsewhere. Unless they happen to still have the Facebook cookie saved in their computer cache. Facebook and others can see where a person is on the Internet, where they've been, which country they are in and, probably, also which area from the IP address, but they don't know who an individual is.

Is this a bad thing, this gathering of information for marketing purposes?

Perhaps there will indeed come a time when Minority Report - the film with Tom Cruise - is not just a threat but a reality. A time when a person's features can be recognized from afar and advertising is adapted to their needs, their interests. At the moment it is all limited to offers made when someone log into the web sites of their choice and based upon the information they've given up voluntarily. But some of that information is already being used to influence other people in their buying choices.

Who hasn't seen the little addition on Amazon: people who bought this book also bought...

This is the thin edge of the wedge, this is just the beginning. This is the information other people have put in to a web site being used to influence you, the visitor. It's one thing to say that an item might interest you based on what you've purchased before, but quite another to have information based on what other people have looked at or bought.

And it is also a simple fact of life which cannot be avoided. I may well have been able to block over three thousand tracking attempts during my few hours of surfing, but did they catch all of them? More to the point, aside from Facebook, who is tracking me? The Big Bad Wolf is not an advertising company checking on who has been looking at their banners or pop-ups. The Big Bad Wolf is those tracking companies who gather information, press it all together and then sell it to others. The anonymous, faceless people we have nothing to do with. Are they just marketing companies, or is the government, any government, hiding behind them? Has the CIA found me, or you and decided to track our movements because a web site visited published a photo of someone, or MI6 because there is a comment posted about Kate Middleton's figure?

Enough of the scaremongering. To be honest and there is not a great deal about this gathering of information that's all that bad. Information has always been gathered, evaluated, passed on and it always will be. Every single time someone goes shopping in the Real World their purchases are recorded: the credit or debit card company; the store; the wholesaler; the manufacturer. No names in most instances, but the information has been gathered. A tin of peas has been purchased, restock the shelves and order a new tin.

Are there any benefits to this mass gathering of information?

If a product isn't popular it gets removed from sale. If a whole range of products suddenly go viral, more are produced. If a web site suddenly falls in the ratings, it gets improved or it vanishes. If an advert gets no clicks at all, it needs to be re-evaluated and a new marketing strategy pounded out.

The people who are surfing through the Internet are changing its features with each click of their mouse. Their surfing activity is the basis for what follows. A visitor to any web site doesn't have to press Like to show appreciation, it is enough that the records show they stayed on a site for five minutes, read through an article, even if they didn't comment or purchase. The visit alone is showing the manufacturers, the advertisers, the service industry where interest lie with the result that they are going to have to tailor what they have on offer to meet our (silent) demands. We, the Internet users, are shaping the future, just by being here. And that can only be a good thing.

Even so, nearly eight hundred blocks on Facebook alone in so few hours?

I have written so far about the marketing strategies of various Internet web sites, of advertising and the collection of data from individual visits to web sites while surfing through the Internet. Now I wish to take it one step further following an announcement by the German telecommunications company O2, a daughter firm of the Spanish telecommunications company Telefónica.

The collection of information through Internet sites, as illustrated above, is simple, cheap and effective. An Internet user surfs to a web site of interest and his or her movements through the web are logged, collected and evaluated by a whole range of different tracking devices, from spy software through cookies, links to social media networks and search engines or analytical tools. But what about the general movements of a person during their daily lives? Is it possible to follow a specific person, or a group of people, as they move through a city? Is it possible to collate the information gained from these movements and come up with an overall picture which might be useful to marketing companies, to advertisers, to the marketplace in general?

It is a well known and accepted fact that people who use modern smart phones, as well as older versions, can be tracked. The mobile telephone needs to be in constant contact with a transmission device, a node or similar, so that it is available should the user wish to telephone out or to receive calls from other people. As long as the mobile device is switched on it sends and receives a signal which places it within a certain area, within reach of a communications point to retain this high level of connectivity. A person moving through the streets of Berlin, New York, London, Paris or any other modern city as well as all minor cities, smaller towns, villages and the countryside with a mobile device is constantly followed by these connection signals as long as their device is switched on. Information on their position may, with the right technology, quickly be collected and, in the case of an emergency for example, directed to the appropriate authorities, even without the use of a Global Positioning System (GPS).

The German telecommunications company O2 is investigating the possibilities of using this information on the movement of individuals for marketing purposes. Being able to watch the movements of an individual or a group as they travel from one shop to another within a major city, or from one position to another on longer journeys, can give information about where the most interest in a town lies, where the shops and stores have the best pull and even, with finer tuning, how long a person remains in one position, in one shop or store.

Not, in and of itself, too much of a problem until you take it to the next step in the process.

Couple the information on a person's movements with further information, such as age and gender, and it is possible to build up a very accurate picture of the movements and interests of a group of people within a certain age group - such as young women aged between 18 and 24. The necessary information is already there, voluntarily given by the customer during the process of buying or renting a mobile telephone. Date of birth, address, gender and, in some cases, income and educational levels are all included in the basic application process for a contract between telecommunications company and customer.

Here, because of the sudden lack of anonymity, we come into a gray area as far as data protection is concerned, and a potential earner for the telecommunications industry. Combine the information with actual sales, with positioning in an entertainment area of a city or the main shopping street, and it is possible to build up an individual picture of each and every person using a mobile device at any time of the day or night. Here we are verging on the private sphere, the gathering of information which can be narrowed down to a specific person.

What is the difference between an individual person using the Internet and being tracked and an individual using a mobile device?

With Internet tracking there may well be several hundred people using a connection point into the Internet, an IP address linked to an Internet Service Provider, at any one time. With mobile device tracking the link is direct to a specific mobile phone, to a specific person who has purchased or rented this device. It is possible to link directly to a name and an address without needing to go any further along the chain, without needing to find out who was using a specific IP at a certain time and then checking their communications protocol or whereabouts at the time of connection. It is possible to track movements without the person being tracked actually being active, without them having logged into the Internet or even making a telephone call.

With further innovations in the smart phone market, such as video devices, payment for services through a smart chip, it is possible to trace their every movement right down to the items they may purchase in any given store, even a parking ticket purchased through an appropriate application on their mobile phone. It is possible to see how long they remain in one area, where they move to and how much they have spent.

For the gathering of information with marketing potential, this is an absolute goldmine. For the individual, the mobile device owner, it is an incursion into their private sphere, into their daily lives.

This form of market information gathering is not music for the future; the first steps have already been taken by O2 in Germany. Information is already available and is constantly being added to each time a person switches their mobile device on. It is only a matter of time before the true potential of this information source is recognized and, data protection laws allowing, becomes common practice.

This form of gathering, of tracking is, according to many professional and civil rights organizations, one step too far. As long as the information gathered comes from a large group and cannot be traced back to an individual it is relatively harmless. With the mobile device potential, the move towards a Minority Report style society is far closer than anyone would wish to believe and, in all probability, far closer than anyone is prepared to accept.

Violin Lessons - Read More About It

Have you ever listened to violin music? You can just hear the emotion coming from each note. For those of you who have always wanted to play the violin, why don't you pursue your dreams? You may believe you are not capable of playing this instrument (or any other instrument, for that matter), but that is only because you have not taken good violin lessons. Yes, even you can benefit from violin lessons. In the paragraphs below, we are going to take a closer look at this topic.

Mind you, when you first start those lessons, it may seem impossible. Your fingers and hands will feel as if they do not know what to do with themselves, but this is only because you have never played this instrument before. As with learning any other instrument, practice makes perfect. At first, your hands will feel like they are holding a foreign object, but in due time, your hands will feel right at home when holding the violin.

While some individuals are going to classes in order to learn how to play this instrument, you have others that are taking private lessons by watching videos. There are many videos out there that offer full violin lessons. Turning to software that will give you violin lessons is better than having to pay tuition. You can start out by watching the beginner lessons and work your way up. You are going to find a large variety of courses available. These online violin lessons are for both children and adults, young and old.

Before you start to learn how to play this instrument, you will obviously need to go out and purchase one. Before you purchase a violin, you should talk with a professional in order to find out what is best for you. There are different types of violins available - you should do your research on the different violins. Along with the violin, you should purchase the chin and shoulder rest - without it, it will be hard to play. Also, don't forget some string wax, a tuner and some additional strings.

In the first lesson, you will more than likely learn how to hold your instrument. If you are right handed, you will hold the violin with your left hand and rest it on your left shoulder. Without using your hand, you should be able to hold the instrument with your chin on your shoulder. You will be using your left hand to play the fret board. The bow will be held in your right hand and you will be sliding it up and down one of the strings (depending on which string you are pressing with your other hand).

Playing the violin is not hard to do and with the right violin lessons, you will learn how to play emotional sounding songs in no time at all. Isn't it time to get started?

New Computer - Yes or No?

I am often asked, "How do I know that this computer is good enough for me?" And the answer may come as a surprise to most people. The truth of the matter is that very rarely do people need to purchase the latest and greatest computer available on the market. In fact, if you are working on a small budget, I more often than not, recommend upgrading the system that you already own.

Determining whether or not to upgrade can be tricky, but it is worth the effort.

  • If your system is less than 3 years old, and was top of the line at the time that you purchased it, it may just need a thorough cleaning. For this task, I recommend using my favorite FREE utilities Malwarebytes, and CCleaner
  • If your system is older than 3 years old, depending on the make and model, a thorough cleaning, Operating System Upgrade and a RAM upgrade may be in order. You will need to determine whether or not you have any open slots for the RAM and determine what type of RAM that is required for your motherboard. I recommend talking to a pro for this information if you aren't certain. Some pros offer free consultations, or will offer consultations for low fees that they will then apply toward the cost of the upgrade.
  • If no additional slots are available, it is time for a new computer.
  • If your system is older than 5 years old, it is time for a new computer.

Now that we have determined that you do indeed need to purchase a new computer, here are some key points to consider in the selection process.

Do I need a desktop or a laptop?

  • Are you often on client site?
  • Are you constantly taking work home with you?
  • Do you travel for work?
  • Do you need to be able to make presentations in places other than your main office location?

If you answered yes to any of the above questions, then I would recommend going with a laptop.

How much Memory / RAM** do I need?

  • Are you working with a lot of graphics or photographs?
  • Do you work with music editing or production?
  • Are you working with multiple programs at the same time? (Example: I currently have MS Word, PhotoShop, PaintShop Pro, Thunderbird, FileZilla, Serif Font Manager, Safari, FireFox, Bluefish, and iTunes running. It is standard for me to have at least these programs up and running, and on occasion a few others.)
  • Do you deal with large files on a regular basis, such as Excel Books with multiple Sheets, or large PDF files?
  • Do you edit or produce videos?

If you answered yes to the above questions, you should consider a system with 6GB or 8GB RAM / Memory installed and make certain that it still has the capability of being upgraded in the future. So, the system should support up to 12 GB of RAM / Memory.

Are you using your computer for the following:

  • Checking / Sending emails
  • Surfing the internet
  • Sharing the occasional family photo
  • Writing papers for homework / work
  • Simple spreadsheet manipulation
  • Social Networking with Facebook / YouTube / Pinterest or others
  • Online Banking

If you answered yes to the above, you should be fine purchasing a system with 4GB of RAM / Memory installed. Again, make certain that the system supports future upgrades. So, the system should support up to 8GB of RAM / Memory.

*Please note that you should NEVER have to pay more than $40.00 to have RAM installed (not including cost of the actual RAM), anyone charging more than $40.00 is raking you over the coals, and I recommend finding someone else.

The price of RAM varies widely depending on the type of RAM required. I would recommend checking prices on both and Also, keep in mind that some RAM must be installed in matching pairs. Much like shoes, the system can't run with just one.

**Memory, or RAM (Random Access Memory), relates to the computer's ability to transfer data. The more RAM/Memory, the faster a system will be able to process calls made by software applications.

What Is an iPhone?

These days there are so many phones out on the market it is hard to keep up with them. When thinking of these phones a couple have stood the test of time! Android's, iPhone's, and Samsung seem to be the major three in regards to Smartphones. Who knows exactly which phone is better because each of them market to different genres. iPhone's seem to be the most popular smartphone on the market today. With the speculation that Apple could sell more than 170 million iPhone 5's in the first year! So, for that older generation out there you may be asking yourself, what is an iPhone?

iPhones are classified as smartphones. "A smartphone is a mobile phone that offers more advanced computing ability and connectivity than a contemporary basic 'feature phone'." iPhones have been on the cutting edge of this industry since 2007. Apple has been very intuitive with what consumers are looking for! Since 2007 many companies have tried to duplicate and copy the iPhone, but Apple keeps coming out with ingenious designs and ideas that simply cant be copied. The iPhone also offers a lot of software functions competitors cannot. With the ability to sync up with your MacBookPro and the new iCould. It allows you to download many apps to help your everyday life. It's basically a secretary in your pocket. Kids also love the iPhones because they can call and text their friends as well as listen to their music they purchase. Many apps that the younger generation enjoys have been incorporated into the iPhone through the App store. When your kid is on the computer majority of the time they are probably on a social media site. The iPhone now has the ability to allow easy access to these social media platforms. Kids spend hours upon hours on these platforms. The iPhone was also one of the first phones to place a camera into the phone. Having a camera built into your phone that takes quality pictures is always nice. Also this is very convenient not having to buy a camera and a phone and lug two devices with you wherever you go! Many companies are also banking off the iPhone. Companies like "InstaGram" sold their company for a billion dollars because it took off with the youth! This application allows the user to adjust and modify the pictures taken on the device and share them through Instagram or other social media platforms. Not only is the phone a huge social media outlet it also has a lot of functionality. "Maps" on the phone allows your to get turn by turn directions to your destination. It has a calendar with reminders so you can set doctor appointments, special events etc. The phone has so many different functionalities for different ages! Anyone can use the iPhones they are pretty simple devices set up for the user!

The birth of the iPhone should be traced to September 7, 2005. When Apple and Motorola paired up and released the ROKR E1. However Apple was not satisfied with this device and believed they could do better. Since they had to compromise with Motorola, Apple could not create the device to their desires. January 9, 2007 Steve Jobs announced the iPhone at the MacWorld Convention, on June 11, 2007 it was released. From that point on Apple has been creating and perfecting the iPhone. After the iPhone 2g came the iPhone 3g onto the 3gs. After these phones Apple came up with a perfect design! The iPhone 4, the sleek and narrow design seemed to pop out at every user! After the 4 came the 4s, the phone many are using today! There is a lot of speculation as when the iPhone 5 will be dropped. Many believe it to be sometime in September. However here at iBroke we seem to think they would release it October 5, 2012. This was the date of Steve Jobs death and we believe Apple will honor him with the release of this incredible phone! Who knows exactly when this phone will be released and what amazing new technology it will bring with it!

So in short, iPhones are more than just phones! They allow you to have the convenience of the world at your finger tips! Being able to surf the world wide web on a hand held device is insane! Or being able to talk to your family via face-time that's half way around the world! Apple never ceases to amaze its clients and keep them satisfied and coming back for more! If anyone is considering buying an iPhone we highly suggest it! If you ever have any problems with your iPhone, iPads, iTouch's, or iPods simply send them to us at Myibroke.

How to Begin Editing Our Karma? [Part 16] Never Too Old - Never Too Late

Never Too Old - Never Past It

Regardless of our age, gender, social status, IQ and emotional connections to others, need and creed, emotion and reason, combine into our very personalized Achilles heel.

Ex-Prime ministers and Presidents, music artists, impressive CEOs, actors, scientists, innovators, and athletes of international renown are notable examples of the enduring craving for love received via the cheering and the emotions of their supporters and fans. For them as for us, 'love' comes in the shape of rewards and seeming 'whole-hearted' responses from others.

Few are the cultural icons who choose to retire to a 'civilian' life while they still maintain a modicum of currency and credibility in their field. Of course, they, too, fear 'the future'. Thus, not many deliberately turn their back 'now' to lucrative key-note addresses, lectures and brand sponsorships. In truth, these luminaries are dependent on their reward dollars, no less than we are, to perpetuate the cycle of 'love' and appreciation that keeps their inner circle spinning around them. They need to please and appease, as we do, to be invited to appear and reappear in front of the masses. Besides, once one has felt such waves of admiration and respect a.k.a. waves of love, how grey and boring life would seem if the only focus were simply to be present in the 'now' moment to interact lovingly with children, partner, family, friends and neighbors in an unconditional manner that is actively accepting!

When one considers the billions of heart-related ailments that plague all strata of our society, one would be excused for thinking that we are in the middle of a massive pandemic dis-ease, and perhaps we are, if we understand that all disease infiltrates first, our energy field long before other symptoms are noticed.

We do understand that it is a cause that generates symptoms, but we are wrong to think that the cause is purely physical or emotional.

Serious question #1:what if the cause were generated in our energy field and what if the cause materialised out of a karmic imbalance due to a closed-hearted, self-centered response to the stressors of in our 'now, moment after moment over a period of years?

Serious question #2:what would happen if the millions of people employed to tend to our ailing hearts were to be phased out because of an en masse healthier approach to doing life?

Be that as it may, for now, it seems safe to say that our aching hearts do keep our western world economy from collapsing further.

Imagine if you can the ramifications of immensely shrinking the work load of local doctors, ubiquitous heart specialists and the armada of nurses? What about the plethora of hospital staff from the Registrars to cleaners, dry-cleaners and surgeons? And let's not forget the pharmaceutical industry that engineers billion-dollar revenues from the chemicals they produce as well as from the machinery they create to tend to our aching hearts? Oh, and let's not forget either the industries that look after us... at the moment of our 'untimely' death!

Tangentially, the twin juggernaut industries of Correctional Services and of Defense are on par with the oddly-named industry of Health when it comes to the most massive pillars of our economy.

Serious question #3:How would we fare psychologically within a biophilial culture in which all people shared a common bond through a love of humanity and nature as well as a respect for independence and freedom, as argued by Erich Fromm [1] if it meant an economy massively depressed by the obsolescence of

> the meat and dairy industries

> the Correctional Services that process criminality

> the manufacturing, processing and sales of weapons made legal by the pro-gun lobby

> weapons of mass destruction and drones, as generated used by the Armed forces and Homeland Defence?

Consider for a moment the genuine armadas of personnel needed to maintain the relative degree of safety/security demanded by the criminality potential in any of our developed countries. Let's start by considering the thousands and thousands of staff involved in prevention, guidance and rehabilitation. Next, let's consider the number of police personnel, judges, prison officers, secretaries, ancillary staff and all manner of security guards and electronic security. Let's not forget the purchase of these employees' vehicles and their maintenance. Let's not forget either the staff involved in the maintenance of all of the buildings and infrastructures that prop up this industry. And what about the bureaucrats who look after all these employees' salaries, insurances and retirement funds?

It is a truly odd thing to say that 'crime doesn't pay' because, clearly, it pays the salaries of millions of people in each of our countries and these millions of workers contribute to the survival of other sectors of our economy. The same job-diversity inventory-type of reflection can be applied to the hundreds of industries and the millions of staff that 'live off' the Armed Forces and Homeland Defence.

When it comes to these four industries, peace on earth, safety in our streets, love in our homes, love and peace in our hearts, even towards the cows and their calves, the sheep and their lambs, would surely trigger world-wide chaos - a prize far too exorbitant to pay for harmony within communities across the globe.

It is thus not surprising that the ones who do have the power to 'flick the switch', the handful of family dynasties who rule our world, overseeing our key-leaders, prefer to let sleeping dogs lie. It's so much easier for all to maintain the status quo by quietly chocking certain areas of alternative progress which would eventually lead to... true progress! And tacitly, we do agree with them, don't we?

Fence-sitting is not always an enduring option.

Back to topic, the clear and deadly by-product of the general mismanagement of our affairs on just about every level is the love starvation that manifests itself in the ever-present need, the desire, the unavowed craving for praise in one form or another. It is from this insatiable hunger that stems the anxiety that plagues populations world-wide. It is from this anxiety that we breed our cancers as readily as we breed depression, as readily as we become dependent on food, alcohol, drugs - as readily as we project ourselves as... victims.

Serious questions: how is that that we are still planning the *future* though, any one of us past our formative years, has already spent the best part of our life planning that future? Isn't it true that in introspective moments, whether ours is a good life or a challenging one, most of us look at our current circumstances wondering How did my life turn out the way it has?

Looking at the overwhelming evidence, should we go on proudly claiming that we have total control over a life that, on the whole, yields as much contentment as an olive yields juice? So very little!

Serious questions:how can anyone assume we are the masters of our destiny when we belong to a species who can no more suspend breath than initiate it of our own evolution; when we are miserable the moment we get the sniffles, a toothache or a paper cut on the edge of a little finger; when our dog dies; when we can no more control our sleeping patterns than stop our eyes from blinking; when we change our mind according to our mood and when our pulse quickens at the sight of an object of desire planted in our brain by media hype, be it a car, a pair of sneakers, a designer label computer, a painting or another human being classified INACCESSIBLE; when we only know what we 'think' we want without having the faintest idea of how, in the fullness of time, any of these wants will eventually boomerang back to us? Like our teenagers who refuse to budge away from undesirable patterns of behaviour, don't we already have enough evidence that, for most of us, doing life our way is not the way to achieve what we are so desperate to achieve?

Eyes open wide: can we possibly exert a clear-minded control over the endless string of our 'now' moments, as long as we are constantly much more preoccupied by our appearance, our possessions or lack of, and by how others perceive us than by true origins of our thoughts? Than by the content of our thoughts? Than by the results of our thoughts?

We only become care-less in regards to others' perceptions of ourselves once we find ourselves at two opposite ends of the spectrum of inner balance when:

1. we are 'in' love and exhibiting narcissistic emotions

2. we are in a state of depression and exhibiting sado-masochistic tendencies.

Ironically, it is while positioned anywhere in between these two poles on the continuum of emotions that we either tackle irritating, disappointing 'now' moments as pests that must not be allowed to multiply or as if the Oracle had signalled the incipient, shadowy encroachment of death. Even if it were the latter, it can still be argued that one has responsibility to one's self to choose in which state one prefers to leave one's body.

Option #1:in a state of sour, anxious, fearful detachment due to a disappointing lifetime spent alternating between wetting our toes, wading knee-dip or immersing ourselves in a shifting sea of greed, lust, sloth, pride envy and anger.

Option #2:in a more serene state due to a lifetime spent alternating between wetting our toes, wading knee-dip or immersing ourselves in a softer sea of sharing, of purpose-centred diligence, ego-training, of humility, of patience and generosity of spirit.

Serious question:what have we got to lose once we understand that there are no membership fees to pay for this training of our inner self, that there is not a single thing that needs to be bought, no special clothes, no books, no crystals or statues, that the rethinking or our thinking can be done anywhere, any time.

Any timemeans any time a thought of fear or insecurity creeps in; any time a thought of Me first and to hell with her/him/them is attempting to overpower us; any time a thought of Fun now! Consequences later is pushing us towards recklessness; any time a thought of separation or dislike of someone; any time we're itching to take sides and gossip; any time the urge comes to 'touch', to manipulate, to sway in whichever manner a situation in our favour or to make it go away - any time is karmic time to control what pops into our ego in the moment - 'now'.

Why?Because each of these recurring irritants and each of our crises are but a part of the constellation of impacts karmically intended to force us to switch off our automatic pilot and attune our consciousness to our inner self.

Honest question:isn't it more empowering to think along those lines than to think that life is random and unfair and that basically some of us have a lot more bad luck than others?

State of things:although, as adults, we usually know right from wrong, we, humans, are prone to actions that go against our better judgment. If we know what is best for us, then why don't we get on with it? This conundrum known as Akrasia brought Socrates and Aristotle to loggerheads.

To this day, no amount of plumbing the depth of our psyche has revealed to contemporary philosophers the real cause of our 'natural' ambivalence between emotion and reason. If we understood the Law of Karma better, we might simply concede that human error, tragedies and apparent non-sequiturs of reasoning stem from a blend of divine/cosmic and human interventions, If we did truly understand this, then, we would, perhaps, give up trying to isolate the 'real cause' of this karma-generating natural human ambivalence.

Here is a fun last minute thought: one funky way to eventually reduce the population explosion on our planet would be for more and more of us to amend karma better and faster in each consecutive lifetime.


1. Fromm, Erich On Being Human London: The Continuum International Publishing Group Ltd, 1997, p. 101

NB: Long story made short, though, clearly, it is Soul's energy that keeps us alive [not any sort of medical intervention or degree of fitness] until our karmic time is up and not one second longer, I imagine that she has, in all likelihood, given up on us a long, long time ago. Or she would have, if she were not pure energy.

Educational Input or Output?

In education, we look for output to determine the effectiveness of our curriculum and methods. We call this process testing or assessing. In schools, teachers test often to determine grades as well. In some states the home school law requires that families have their children assessed at designated intervals. Some say that we should not test at all. Assessing is appropriate at times, but the question is how much and how often. I do believe that we tend to elicit output more than we provide input. Often, we test before the child has had an opportunity to learn the material. May I suggest that we spend too much time getting output and, for many children, too little time providing input?

Here are two tips that you can use to provide input in your child's education:

As a child, I participated in a classroom activity called, "Around the World." As a teacher, I have also used this method to test my students to see how well they knew their math facts. This is different than using flashcards to provide input. The neurodevelopmental approach uses flashcards as input rather than a test. To use flashcards as input, quickly show the student the information giving the answer. Repeat these in SHORT, FREQUENT times throughout the day. One website that I have used provide downloadable curriculum items. They have weekly free curriculum offers and the others are reasonably priced. One time I chose Periodical Table flashcards. These downloadable flashcards, once prepared, provide a means to input the information the child should learn. Flashcards provide visual input.

You already know that children develop reading skills when following along as they listen. Did you know that an individual's auditory processing improves by listening to stories without following along? Further, if the individual listens only in the dominant ear (same side as the hand he/she uses to write), listening can contribute to establishing a one-side dominance. This dominance enhances long-term memory and emotional control. (Caution: If the story has a musical background, listen with both ears.) These stories provide auditory input. The website below provides free, downloadable stories with the text. I listened to a 14 minute story: "The Monkey Who Loved Chocolate." Classic Authors include Lewis Carroll, Oscar Wilde, Charles Dickens and Rudyard Kipling. Bible stores appear as well.

Think about how much of your instructional time is spent in eliciting output and how much providing input.

The Journey to Determining TV Advertising Prices

Every other minute we see an advertisement on the television. As if not enough, every other day there features yet another new advert. Each seems to have its own appeal. They come in different forms and as you possibly have observed, songs are the most commonly used.

Often, little or no thought is given to the masterminds behind the final product. A standard commercial takes about thirty seconds. This means that very high intelligence is applied to compile the description of a certain product or service. It is not only the description, but also the creative and persuasive language that ensures someone is convinced that the particular product or service is worth buying. Now, in order to determine the costs of producing a TV advert, you need to understand elements involved.

The services in production

Writing and Development, storyboarding, editing, motion graphics, voice-overs, green screen wardrobe for the actors' crew, hair and makeup professionals, broadcast quality and casting.

The voice-overs

In a TV advert, voice-overs are used. In a case where the project has been handed over to an advertising agency, it is easy. Agencies are linked to the right personnel. A TV commercial requires eloquent narrators to capture the audience. In some cases, the agency opts for a musician to custom produce melodies that will accompany the message of the product.

A brand

Some of the advertisements require models or celebrities. Commercials require the right actor or actress to sell. For instance, if a person who is celebrated by the youth appears in an advertisement of a product that is meant to reach the youth, good returns is almost a guarantee.


Different equipments are used in different advertisement projects. One basic tool is a camera. This is obvious as the project is a visual one. A dolly, a crane and tripod, a lighting package if artificial light will be needed, a boom operator and sound equipment which includes vocal microphones and active PA systems, are the other equipments that are necessary.

The rehearsals of voices and any unique performance are done in rehearsal studios.


There are a number of people involved in the production process. This includes the actors and actresses as mentioned above. Together, let us refer to them as a cast of actors. In every gathering, there has to be a leader to give instructions on which course will be taken. In this case, there is a writer who will come up with the content of the advertisement. This person should be given as much information as possible about the product or service. There is also a director, a producer, a director of photography otherwise known as the DP, one production assistant and the boom operator. One project cannot be complete without the harmony of these people.

Post production

We are still on the journey. It may seem long and all the people mentioned appear unnecessary but the final product should be exceptional. With the work of the above people, the process is almost done. There is still something that needs to be done. The work has to be edited. This is done by a professional editor. Music can be included, color correction done and addition of some graphics. With this the advert is good to be aired.

A good advertisement is one that goes out convincingly and at the same time persuasively. It should reach the targeted group and above all bring back the expected returns. Clients have reported of having an increase of sales not twice or thrice more but even nineteen times more.

All this accounts for the TV advertising prices that are mentioned by the agent. TV advertising remains to be the most effective way to advertise and reach the most people. Unlike other methods, the visual aspect gives this form of advertising the power to reach even the not so literate class. Although television commercials production is a long process that would require professionals, it is still worth the investment. In any case, if you take your time to sample the rehearsal studio London has to offer, you will surely find a good bargain.

Why You Should Add Video to Your Online Marketing Strategy

Each day I talk to small business owners and marketing managers about the advantages of video marketing and what it can do for their businesses. Most of the time they associate video production with the cost, not the benefits. Big mistake. One video can be reused for numerous marketing channels. It is a cost effective method to generate more leads. Here are 11 reasons why you should produce an online video and successfully use it for various marketing channels.

- Higher Return On Investment potential. Early video adopters found out that video is very cost effective since increased sales outweigh the production cost and bring higher ROI. Businesses hesitate to add video to their marketing mix due to a high video production cost, which remains an obstacle to greater video adaptation. Animated video can be a solution to that since it doesn't require live action video shooting, extensive equipment and onscreen talent.

- Improve SEO ranking. Google, Yahoo, MSN, AOL Search Engines give priority listings to websites that host video content. Research shows that webpages with engagement objects such as video, enhance the user experience and therefore rank higher in search results. Uploading Online Video to the second largest search engine - YouTube, and linking back to your website will add even more weight to your Google search results.

- Increase profile views within business directories. Create a short introductory video about your company, products and their benefits. Post video on business directories - Yellow pages, Google places, Yahoo! Local, Bing Local, Yelp and others and drive more traffic to your websites, get more calls, and increase store visits.

- Improve email marketing. Are you constantly looking for new ideas to improve response rates? Consider including video in your email marketing campaign. Integrating video can increase click-through rates and lift conversion by 50% (source: Constant Contact).

- Track results. The success of a video campaign can be measured accurately in real time. Detailed analysis of how many people viewed the video, who watched it, what behaviors the video generated, and more can be displayed. When you post videos on other websites, you can keep track of the number of visitors it brings to your website.

- Enjoy Viral Effects. Online video has a great potential to become viral and be seen by the masses, creating an online word of mouth effect. Viral video became popular through the process of Internet sharing through YouTube, Facebook, blogs and email. Video is a great way to encourage interaction, fun and enjoyment amongst the online community.

- Support sales. More companies incorporate videos into their sales presentations that can help sales people to more effectively deliver their marketing messages and sell products. These introductory videos demonstrate how products work, dissolve common objections and show the testimonials of satisfied customers.

- Utilize Mobile channels. As many users are switching to smart phones, online marketers are looking for ways to be able to reach them through their handsets. However, not all videos can be played on mobile. E.g. Flash videos cannot play on Apple products such as the iPhone and iPad. The problem can be solved by uploading Flash video to YouTube, which uses HTML5 technology to display various formats of video and then embed YouTube video on your website.

- Motivate viewers. Great stories combined with music create a powerful emotional overtone, capture and motivate audiences. Rich content and entertaining stories give consumers editorial reasons to return more frequently to website or blog. Made-for-web video is the most effective online format to positively influence purchase decisions.

- Educate and build trust. Video is suited for many forms of presentations to inform and instruct customers about your products, their features and benefits. Audio and visual presentations can accelerate learning by 78% and increase comprehension (source: S. Cartwright, Preproduction planning for video, film and multimedia). Focus your script around the most important points you want your viewers to remember and do.

- Reach your audience in any language. Video helps you tell your story in any language and motivate viewers to take action across all time zones and borders. Either record voice over talent in different languages or add translated subtitles to your video to reach broader audiences.

Online Video is a no brainer for any business. Start with one video, upload it to various channels and get results.

Selecting Wedding Bands - How to Save Money Without Ruining Your Big Day

You're busy planning for your big day and you're already running short of money, right? This is a common lament of all people who are very particular about what their wedding and reception should be like. There are so many wonderful things you could organize for this, the biggest day in your life, that it's hard to keep track of the budget. However, this is something that you certainly have to do because you will unnecessarily get into debt if you don't. Take wedding bands, for example. It's tempting to get the biggest and most popular band possible because you so badly want your guests to have a great time. Thankfully, there are certain things you can do to reduce expenses without compromising on quality.

You have to be very tough when you negotiate with wedding bands because they are expecting you to do so. Feel free to ask for a discount on their published tariffs because there is a strong likelihood that they will offer it to you. Always shop around for options before you make your final selection because this will give you a good idea of what price you should pay. It also helps to give the band a gentle reminder that you are very price conscious and that you are looking at other options as well.

In addition, you should also find out what exactly they require and what equipment they will be bringing with them. Sound and light equipment is usually a big expense and you should avoid having to hire it out, even if it means looking at wedding bands that have this equipment. Alternately, you should choose a venue that is well equipped and which offers an all-inclusive package.

Bands usually charge based upon how long they have to play. You can keep your expenses under control by limiting this portion of the reception. Give clear instructions to the MC regarding when the event should be drawn to a close.

Transportation is usually another big expense. Certain wedding bands expect you to pay for their transportation and even their accommodation if they are coming from out of town. You should try and avoid the second expense at least by hiring a local band. It is very unlikely that you cannot find local musicians who can play the kind of music you want. Spend some time to search for them, using the internet preferably, because you are sure to find a really good band from your town or city. If you really want a particular group of musicians and they insist that you pay for transportation, then you should consider enlisting the help of a friend or a family member to pick them up and drop them back after the event is over.

Once you have finalized all details, you shouldn't waste any time to put everything down on paper. It is best that you sign a contract with the wedding band of your choice and also pay them a deposit so that they know that you mean business. This will ensure that your reception goes off very well.

Phonics Games Captivate A Child's Attention

Phonics games are a stupendous approach for the teaching of phonics. We all know that a child's attention span is truly restrained, especially so with a very young child. It is noteworthy to mention, however, that a phonics game will not only attract, but captivate the interest of the child for at least one session. The more interesting that the game, the more attention will be given to it by the young student.

On our virtual world (the internet) there are many useful phonics games. There are, likewise, ways in which you could make up your own games, both for amusement and instructing your young child on the sounds and letters of the alphabet. Over time this will develop a strong vocabulary. While searching for phonics games it is important to find or create games that include the unique interests of the child. By doing this he or she will be more easily engaged in the activity at hand. For the very young it is always good to look for those games that encompass nursery rhymes and music that will fill in absent expressions while chiming in.

The phonics games you choose should, likewise, include enthralling pictures and colors. Both of the aforementioned, in conjunction, will captivate your young learners attention. It is these types of games that will hold a child's interest and will have them looking forward to learning their phonics lessons.

When you are choosing a game make sure that it is one suited to the child's present learning capacity. Begin with the phonetic concept game, usually the letters of the alphabet in order and their associated sounds. You should, also, look for games that include both listening and visual skills, as well as, pronunciation and diction.

Research has demonstrated that if shown phonics at an opportune time that a little person can develop into an excellent and avid reader. Search for great materials to help educate your youngster in the essentials of phonics. Occupy your child by providing captivating, fascinating and beguiling phonics games.

One easy game to prepare for play is the phonics bingo game. It is a great game to play around the family table.

  • Prepare bingo cards with a white cardboard.
  • In the bingo blocks use the letters of the alphabet.
  • Laminate the cards so they will be durable and washable.
  • Use washable markers so that the cards will be easily cleaned.
  • The "Bingo Caller" calls out letter sounds.
  • The "Bingo Player" marks his or her card according to the sound heard by the "Bingo Caller".
  • The first player to mark five in a row correctly calls out "Bingo" and wins the game.

This game is fun for the learner of phonics and gets the family involved with helping their children or siblings along the way. This is only one of the many phonic games available on the market today. When you are searching for phonic games just be sure that the game is suitable for the learning capacity of your child.

Science Museum of Minnesota Review

The Science Museum of Minnesota is a wonderful museum for families to spend the day learning about a wide variety of sciences. The hands on displays and experiments allow kids of all ages to learn about biology, geology, chemistry and paleontology. There are 7 permanent galleries, 2 traveling exhibit galleries, an Omnitheatre and several smaller shows available daily at the museum. The Omnitheatre tickets and some traveling exhibits will charge an extra fee for admittance. The 7 permanent galleries are:

1. Big Back Yard - Seasonal Gallery
2. Human Body Gallery
3. Cell Lab
4. Collections Gallery
5. Experiment Gallery
6. Dinosaurs and Fossils Gallery
7. Mississippi River Gallery

Each gallery has hands on displays and information specific to the topic. Some galleries also have shown and scientists available to answer questions.

Big Back Yard

This gallery is open seasonally. There is a miniature golf course available for an additional fee. There is a natural maze of prairie plants for kids to explore. The best part of this exhibit is the large water and sand exhibit where water runs over a large incline of sand. Kids can mold the sand into dams, pools and ridges to see how the running water effects what they build. It is a lot of fun for all ages.

Human Body Gallery

Guests can learn all about the human body in this gallery. This gallery has a show in the perception theatre with a 20 minute show that teaches about how the human brain functions. The show is free and very fun. This gallery also has displays on the bloodstream and other body parts. The human body gallery is right next to the Cell Lab and the two galleries complement each other.

The Cell Lab

This is the only area of the museum with specific age requirements. The cell lab has 7 different experiments for kids to perform that will teach them about the human body and some of its parts. All items needed are provided for each experiment and the steps are given on an interactive computer screen. There are several experiments that can be done by 1st graders and some that required guests to be 10 and up. Each experiment does take 20 to 30 minutes and there is limited space.

Collection Corner

This is a fun and interactive gallery for kids of all ages. The museum encourages kids to bring in two natural objects to trade. The objects are 'priced' with points and the points can be redeemed for other natural objects available. There are a lot of rocks and crystals to trade for. Additional points can be earned for knowing about the items that are traded in. This is a fun way for kids to get something interesting to bring home from their day at the Minnesota Science Museum. This area also has a several interesting displays including questionable medical devices and a real mummy.

Experiment Gallery

This gallery is located near the human body gallery and the cell lab. There are a variety of hands on experiments and displays that teach guests about tornadoes, steam power and air currents. Each experiment has directions and younger guests may need help reading the instructions.

Dinosaur and Fossil Gallery

This gallery has a small play area specifically for the youngest guests. There are also large fossils of some dinosaur favorites, including a stegosaurus and triceratops. Future paleontologists can take a look at fossils up close and learn about where they can do their own fossil hunting in the twin cities area.

Mississippi River Gallery

This is the first exhibit guests walk into when entering the museum galleries. The highlight of this gallery is the tug boat that everyone can climb into and explore. The boat has an upper area where the captain would steer the ship. The stairway up is quite small and only one person at a time can go up or down so there is some waiting required when the museum is busy. This area also has a river pilot simulator where guests can try to steer a variety of boats down the river.

On Site Food

There is a food court on the top level of the science museum as well as a small snack counter in the lobby and another café area near the dinosaur gallery. Food is not allowed in any of the exhibits but may be brought on site.

Tips and Tricks

1. Skip the Mississippi River Gallery when you first arrive if there is a line - this is where everyone stops first so it can be a good idea to hit it later in the day when there are less people in the area.

2. Go directly to the cell lab upon arrival and choose one of the experiments to do. They take about 20-30 minutes and are a lot of fun. Often this area is busy later in the day.

3. Bring in two natural items to trade at the collectors corner.

4. Don't miss the musical stairs that go from the upper level down to the main level.

5. Listen for the chimes. Whenever a chime is heard there is an earthquake somewhere in the world. The tone and length of time played indicate the location and strength of the earthquake.

6. Watch one of the shows at the Science Live Stage on the bottom floor. These short presentations are interesting and informative.

7. Take a look out the windows. The Science Museum has breathtaking views of the Mississippi River.

8. If you will visit more than once in a year, get a membership. This provides entrance to the exhibits, reduced prices for traveling exhibits and the Omni Theater and parking.

The Science Museum of Minnesota is a great place to visit for families and kids who want to learn about the world around them.

Enjoy the Best Hampton Roads Wine Festivals

We've heard more than one vintner in Virginia call the state "Napa East," thanks to the growth of wine production in the Commonwealth. If you have traveled the state, you'll find that there are more than a hundred wineries that offer a wide selection of fragrant vintages. From the popular Viognier to the earthy reds like Merlot and Cabernet Franc, there's something to suit every palate. In the Hampton Roads area, we now have three wineries for you to visit (Williamsburg Winery, Mermaid Winery, and Pungo Ridge Winery), but that doesn't mean you have to leave town to taste what more Virginia has to offer.

Wine festivals are popular in Hampton Roads. Each year representatives from wineries across the state and sometimes beyond converge on our region to share their latest vintages. These events typically attract thousands of wine enthusiasts a year, and you'll find more than the sweetness of the vine when you visit. Live music, great food, and arts and crafts vendors are also hand to make the days extra special. So why not slip that sleeve of crackers in your bag and head over to some of our favorite Hampton Roads wine events.

Town Point Wine Festival: (May and October) One of the city's favorite traditions is the wine festival held at Town Point Park in Norfolk, held in the Spring and Autumn. Here you can sample the best of the state's vintages along with gourmet snacks provided by local restaurants. We've been lucky to be blessed with beautiful weather every time the Town Point festival happens, plus you're walking distance from downtown Norfolk and the many great new restaurants that have opened.

Chesapeake Wine Festival: (October) This fall event is one of the most anticipated in the city of Chesapeake. The wine festival benefits many local charities and to date has raised hundreds of thousands of dollars to help various community interests. Virginia and international wines are represented here, and thoroughly enjoyed.

Neptune Festival: (September) The big Virginia Beach fall festival usually features a space for regional and international wines. Here you can savor the tastes of Virginia and enjoy various beach-related activities, from the professional sand sculpting displays to the big surfing competition.

Yorktown Wine Festival: (October) Enjoy a sip of your favorite red or white as you stroll waterside through Yorktown. You'll enjoy many local and area vendors and live entertainment, with options for a multi-course wine-paired dinner.

Take note that all festivals will check for ID. Festival fees usually include a souvenir glass, and food is extra. You should be able to buy bottles of the vintages you liked most at the festival, too.

If you love wine, Hampton Roads is the place to be during festival time. Salud!

Why a Virtual Phone System Is the Best Solution for Your Small Business

A small business is a very stressful undertaking, especially in the beginning. There is marketing to be concerned with, overhead cost to manage and even communications needs to tackle. With a virtual phone system, however, communications can be simplified and economical, regardless of the business size.

Cost Effective

When most people consider telephone service for a business, their minds are automatically drawn to landline service providers for many different reasons. Landlines are often viewed as traditional and affordable, especially since long distance service is often included in the packages. However, when it comes to adding many lines of service and toll-free calls, these costs can truly add up. A virtual phone system combines all of these costs into one affordable monthly package that is completely customizable based upon the size and needs of the business in general. The main difference is that the service is provided via the Internet rather than standard copper wires and telephone jacks.

Packed with Features

Landline telephone service certainly offers plenty of features that are designed to make communications simpler, but they do not offer much in the way of affordability. Standard features, such as caller ID and perhaps even call waiting, will be included in almost any phone package; everything else must be purchased separately. With a virtual phone system, business owners will get these features and more, including auto attendants, call screening, access to informational hotlines and even hold music that is selected by the business itself. The cost of these features is often included in the price of the phone system package, so there are no unexpected charges or surprises on the bill.

Easy to Use

Businesses that use landline service must often use complicated telephones, and this can be frustrating for business owners and their employees. With a virtual phone system, the interface is available on a computer desktop. When an employee would like to forward his or her calls to their mobile phone for the day, they can simply log onto the interface and make the change with just a few clicks. Checking voicemail, sending and receiving fax and even returning telephone calls has never been simpler.

Privacy and Mobility

Finally, small business owners are often aware that their personal numbers should be kept private from customers and vendors at all times. Otherwise, they would be unable to leave their work lives in the office. A virtual phone system allows employees and business owners to route calls coming into their business lines in any way they see fit, whether to a personal landline telephone or even a mobile phone. The caller has no idea where the call is terminating; all they are aware of is that they called the business and an employee answered. This maintains privacy and also allows for a level of business mobility that could never be achieved with typical landline telephone service.

A small business relies upon communications to build up its clientele and make a name for itself in its chosen industry. A virtual phone system is an affordable and easy-to-use method to stay connected to customers and other employees privately, even when on-the-go.

Network Backup Software Products Review - Part 2

Network backup software provides a convenient way of backing up your essential documents (professional as well as personal) and is largely being adopted by companies of all sizes across industries. In our last article we reviewed the top three backup software products available in the market. In this edition we evaluate few more network backup solutions.

Acronis True Image Home 2012

The new 2012 version of Acronis True Image has been designed to simply data backup and restoration with several new functionalities like file synchronization capabilities and host of new options for the schedule module. Whether you want to backup your entire hard drive or create backup of individual files and programs like email, music, videos and photo file types, Acronis can perform both.

Essentially a disk imaging software Acronis has several backup and copy settings including disk cloning, smart scheduling, online backup ability, incremental and differential backups, live backup and several privacy tools. The USP of this solution is the Try & Decide feature that allows you to test any new software at no risk to your computer. If the new software you download or open poses any potential threat you can simply discard the changes you have made and close Try & Decide.

Flanked by an uncomplicated and yet professional interface and an imaging control panel that help wizards guide you through each step of disk imaging, Acronis network backup software provide remarkable ease of use.

Acronis Backup & Recovery 11 Workstation

Acronis Backup & Recovery 11 Workstation, another product from the Acronis family of backup solutions, is little complicated to use. Nonetheless it can backup Windows workstations within minutes using disk imaging. Acronis Universal Restore allows you to restore the full system to a completely dissimilar hardware, thereby eliminating any compatibility issue. It provides data compression features to optimize storage space and provides option for planning backups for new events, such as the installation of a new program or the addition of new data, etc.

Acronis Startup Recovery Manager can be used to recover data when your system fails to startup properly by simply pressing F11 as your system is starting up and it will open the program. It's a versatile backup and recovery solution with centralized management and is suitable to meet the needs of small businesses.

Easeus Todo Backup Workstation 2.0

Equipped with the Universal Restore feature Easeus Todo Backup Workstation 2.0 provides complete system backup and impeccable disaster recovery. It provides a full system restore, backing up files and folders as well as the operating system and the installed applications, programs, partitions and system files. The solution provides a lot of options when to comes to choosing the backup destination with provision to backup to a local hard drive, external hard drive, USB drive, NAS, remote, CD/DVD or remote FTP. However, the network backup software doesn't support backup to tapes that are still used by companies for data archiving and disaster recovery purposes.

Its advanced security features help guard the backup files that are password protected. You can also choose from an array of password encryption methods. With Easeus Todo Backup Workstation 2.0, you can schedule plans for your backups by hour/day/week/month and automate regular backups. It facilitates comprehensive backup management, automatically erasing old images on the basis of versions or days, thereby saving disk space in accordance with your own settings. Its data compression features also help optimize storage space. It is a trust worthy is backup software fit for Laptops, PCs and Workstations.

NTI Backup Now 5.5

NTI Corporation has come up with the new NTI Backup Now 5.5- a comprehensive backup and restore solution for SMB MIS, LAN, SOHO, PC, Notebook and Netbook. You can backup and restore data in easy steps by choosing what you want to backup, where you want it to be backed up and when and how do you want your filed to be backed up. It can be easily installed and its intuitive interface efficiently walks you through the entire backup and restoration process. The NTI Backup Now help files are also well-drafted and comprehensible covering relevant topics that you can find them quickly with the search tool. It enables data comparing for greater accuracy and has the capacity to backup Outlook and Outlook Express emails.

Undoubtedly the new NTI Backup Now 5.5 simplifies the data backup and restoration process, but the application lacks features beyond its backup and recovery options.

Make Creativity in Designing With Storyboard Artists

Storyboard is actually the visual shot-by-shot translation from the film script which is the basis for the entire production process that uses, including design, background in addition to layout, pc animation, as well as publishes manufacturing. In midst of several technologies, storyboard continues being mostly attracted nowadays. Conventional storyboarding with regard to animation is often a long process that requires customized artwork for every frame. Nevertheless, technological development is making it simpler for present day animators to acquire their suggestions onto completed storyboards. Digital software program for storyboarding provides built-in, quick art work that produces professional, refined storyboards easy and enjoyable.

Storyboards symbolize the finished product ahead of when great time period and cost adopts an activity. The storyboard custom, working inside the style in the production, retains storytelling continuity, stops operating the software program into times or photos, establishes the particular size organizations between numbers and props, in addition to indicates the particular acting via hitting effective poses on each story point. Furthermore, the storyboard artist generally reduces the initial difficult by implementing completely new background places, characters, in addition to props.

Along with digital software program, you can direct your attention on some other part of your piece of software, dealing along with whatever elements you prefer. The software is built to work using the creative thoughts, providing methods to prompt as well as direct your time and efforts for the cohesive end result. Story board artist is definitely an in-depth, split program that features all you need for the rich, dimensional impact! Adding within new figures and tweaking history, voiceovers, as well as music, are actually simpler because clicking the mouse.

The story board artists should also establish the particular size in addition to relationships between characters in addition to props. What the particular artist furthermore does is always to indicate the particular acting via hitting effective poses on each story point. Additionally the job of the particular storyboard artist is always to rough aside new background locations along with characters in addition to props. It's good and also to know how the storyboard artists must balance effective drawing capabilities with acumen on anatomy, directed and acting. This also pertains to the skills inside the staging combined with the aspect related to quick thinking about and creativity.

If an individual posses these kinds of skills in addition to capabilities your personal passion just like a storyboard custom may land a high profession path as an animation movie director. The creative designers outlines that one thing to do is to feel the actual script after which it thumbnail aside your photos. After this the thing which remains is to pitch your personal thumbnails for the story board artists or even computer animation director regarding notes in addition to possible modifications. Now what you should do is really flesh aside the software program putting acting engrossed and this could make the story boards completely easy. Thus if you want to make creative films as well as a strong hold in the artwork, you must consult story board artist.

iPad 2 Vs Samsung Galaxy 10.1

iPad 2 Features
- Front facing camera (Face Time and Photo Booth)
- Rear facing camera (Pictures and Video)
- LED Backlit Display
- Accelerometer, Gyroscope, and Compass
- Multitouch Screen
- App Store
- Smart Covers

Samsung Galaxy Tab 10.1 Features
- Front facing camera (Google Talk video chat)
- Rear facing camera (pictures and video)
- HD display
- Multitouch Interface
- Adobe Flash Player
- Android Market
- 4G

The Matchup
Samsung recently revealed it's newest tablet, the Galaxy Tab 10.1, which seems to be more geared to taking down the iPad 2 than creating a smaller tablet like the original Galaxy. Each tablet has almost identical specs with the iPad and Galaxy weighing in at 1.3 pounds and each only.34" thick. Both tablets have an HD screen with the Galaxy's being slightly larger with a 10.1" screen versus the iPad's 9.7" screen. Each has a rear camera capable of shooting 720p HD video as well as high quality photos, and a front facing camera for Skyping. The Galaxy is trying to set itself apart with it's new home screen design (see picture up top on right). In the Galaxy's home screen you can place your most commonly used apps, favorite websites, music player, and most recent sites visited.

It is far different from Apple's app to app home screen, however the Galaxy has copied Apple's bottom bar where you place the apps you most frequently use and they stay on every page of the tablet. The Galaxy has also adopted Abode Flash player, which is an awesome feature that allows you to watch video on the sites themselves. This means that you won't be limited to only watching video on YouTube like on the iPad. Abode is a great feature allowing you to see more of what you want on the web. The iPad 2 does pack in it's own separate features like it's smart cover that puts the iPad to sleep when its closed and wakes it up when its opened, and it doubles as a stand. The iPad also has it's simplicity, and requires almost no prior instruction on how to use it. The final features that set the iPad apart is it's accelerometer, gyroscope, and compass which are great for games and maps.

The Verdict
These two tablets are each unique and bring an enormous amount of features to the table. Both the iPad and the Galaxy have their similarities, but each has a different feel. I would recommend the iPad 2 to the more casual tablet user, someone who wants a simple and easy to use tablet. However, for the more hardcore tablet user I would recommend the Galaxy. It's 4G capability and Abode Flash Player allow you to do more with the web, and it's home screen design is more similar to a PC than the traditional tablet.

50 Legitimate Work From Home Business Ideas and Opportunities That You Can Start Easily

Starting a business from home can be a bit straining given all the different possible business ventures available. There are a lot of ideas for business from home nowadays and if you have limited resources, you might find yourself a little too confused at which to choose. Or if you already have an idea of what you want to offer, you might be hesitant because of some legal considerations that you need to think about.

The easiest way to choose what kind of business to start from home is to think about your basic strengths and assets. From this, you will be able to determine the kind of business from home that you want to start. You will also need to think about the pros and cons before you start your own home based business. It is okay if it takes you a lot of time to think about what business venture to choose. After all, it takes patience to achieve success.

If you are still a bit confused then let me give you a few business ideas that you could try.

Here are 50 legitimate works from home ideas that you can refer to if you are quite confused on where to begin.

Simple Services As A Home Based Business

This kind of business venture is most ideal for those that have lesser capital or to those that have none at all. This is usually just small scale and may require most of your time. For this type of home based business, you won't need to utilize much space at home as well. Although there may be times that you will need to conduct your service at home like in babysitting or in pet care servicing.

Service-oriented businesses may range to the simple services that you could offer like babysitting to the more skilled type like painting or electrical repair services. Your initial clients are usually friends or neighbors. However, do not be bothered if business is not a mega success at the beginning. Once people see the quality of service that you offer and provide clients will just come faster than you expect.

This is the type of business venture that is easiest to start because of its nature. Basically, you won't need much supplies or materials to start service-oriented businesses. Take note though that although this type of business venture requires low capital, it might require a lot of your time. In some cases, this may require you to provide services at the homes of clients.

Although this is way easier than the other business ventures that you can try, this also requires more effort on your part. Your performance will be the sole determining factor that will encourage people to hire your service. To develop your business, you will also need an endless supply of creativity to constantly improve the service that you provide. Your creativity is particularly handy when you want to start pet care or painting services.

Some services may also require an appropriate amount of training like computer knowledge when you want to start a bookkeeping service business. There is also training needed when you want to start a repair service business. However, in this type of business, you won't need any license, though that may increase your probability of being hired.

If you are the type who has big plans in the future but doesn't have a capital to invest in a home based business, this could also be the perfect business venture for you. It's true that it may take time for this type of business to grow but trust me, couple with determination and the nest quality of service, your business might grow into a lot more in the future. Think that most huge and established businesses that offer these types of businesses started off as small-scale. This could be your stepping stone in making it big in the service oriented industry.

  1. Child care
  2. Elderly Care
  3. Home cleaning services
  4. Yard cleaning services
  5. Bookkeeping services
  6. Repair services
  7. Pet care services
  8. Painting Services

Knowledge and Expertise Based Business from Home

If you are the type with the skills and expertise that you want to share, then this is the type of business venture that you can start. Most people nowadays prefer to take up lessons in private, whether at your home or in their homes because it is more convenient for them. This is advisable for those that have more time to spare or for those that don't have kids at home that could disrupt lessons or your work.

This is ideal for those with the talents and readily available instruments or materials needed for the business to start. This type of business may also require a lot of your time but if you share your skills that was your hobby before, starting this business could be stress relieving and enjoyable for you.

In this type of business, particularly with those that provide lessons and tutorials, you will need to invest a lot of patience because most of your clients will be young people. This is because most parents would want their kids to acquire talent while they are young. So besides your incredible skills, you will need a handful of patience as well. You will also need to make sure that you are able to communicate properly because that will be one the factors that might or might not motivate clients to hire your service.

This is also easy to start because you won't need much material. You don't have to worry much about legalities when starting this kind of business because this is usually small scale. However, if you are planning to venture into a food business, you will need to consider asking local authorities regarding permits that you will need to secure.

  1. Private tutorial
  2. Music Lessons
  3. Dance Lessons
  4. Arts Lessons
  5. Arts and Crafts
  6. Baking
  7. Catering Services
  8. Events Planner
  9. Networking
  10. Buy and Sell

Professional Services As A Work From Home Business

There are more and more professionals nowadays that prefer to work on their own rather than working for a company. It gives them more authority and gives them more opportunities to manage their time. This type of business mostly requires permits and some form of training and certification so you could start. However, if you are already a licensed professional and has established a good reputation for yourself already, all you need is just a little capital to invest for materials and supplies that you would need.

In starting a small business from home that offers professional services, you would usually need to spare a room or a space from your home that will serve as your office. This is because clients that seek your services will need to consult with you. Although there is a possibility for you to utilize online resources for some of the home based business that require professional services, most still need personal contact or conversation.

You will also need to invest in advertising since there is also an increase in the number of professionals that put up their own home based businesses. There may be a need for you to hire staff if you have some capital to spare. This will just lessen your trouble with filing and documentation but you can always just start off without any. This will just depend on how much you can afford to spend initially.

When it comes to legality issues, you will need to coordinate with local authorities regarding required permits that you need to secure. This is because some of the type of professional services that you would need to offer need certification. Good quality service will be your winning edge compared to your other competitors.

  1. Landscaping
  2. Counseling
  3. Interior Design
  4. Accounting Services
  5. Real Estate
  6. Plumbing Services
  7. Photography Services
  8. Family Clinic
  9. Tax preparer
  10. Sewing and Alterations

Home Based Businesses That Require Space For Putting Up Shop

If you have a room or space to spare at home, then this is the type of business venture that you can start. You don't have to build a whole new establishment when starting this kind of business. Although in this type of business, you will need to make sure that you live within areas where people usually go by. This is because the type of business that you will put up needs to be visible to people for you to attract clients. You will also need to invest relatively a lot.

In this kind of business venture, you will also need to emphasize on your marketing strategies since this type of business requires the best marketing and advertising strategies to work. Furthermore, you may also need to invest on hiring staff since basically; you won't be able to run this type of business all alone.

This kind of business is ideal for those that are willing and have available capital to invest. Although this business requires a lot of investments from you, this also is the type of business venture where you can see returns to your investments faster.

This is the type of business where you will need to utilize your connections more. When I say connections, it does not only refer to seeking possible clients but it also refers to possible suppliers that can help you establish your business. In putting up small scale shops, you need to make sure that you are able to locate suppliers that are affordable and efficient so that you don't jeopardize the quality of service or products that you will offer once your business already operates.

Bear in mind that in putting up a shop, you will need to compete with a lot of different shops as well. These competitors may be home based and most will be shops that are already established. You will need to ensure that what you can offer is the best product of service. This is where good business planning is most needed.

You may need to secure legal documents when you want to start this type of business from home. It isn't exactly that complicated because legal permits are particularly because your business has the tendency to attract people thus increasing the amount of traffic in your area. Also, it may require some permits to secure. But just like I mentioned, with the proper planning, this kind of business can return your investments faster than the others.

  1. Car wash
  2. Boutique
  3. Family Restaurant
  4. Laundry Shop
  5. Library or bookshop
  6. Auto Mechanic Shop
  7. Beauty Shop
  8. Flower Shop
  9. Small retail shop
  10. Pet shop
  11. Candy Shop
  12. Bed and Breakfast
  13. Party Needs Rental Services
  14. Food stand
  15. Spa and Saloon
  16. Woodcraft

Online Business Opportunities That You Can Do From Home

This type of business venture is one of the easiest to start if you have the skills, knowledge and resources. People rely on technology nowadays. Because of the change in the lifestyles of people today, they tend to rely on computers for their convenience. With this in mind, you will be able to know how to approach the field of online business wisely.

Although this is one of the easiest, it also may require some form of training especially of you plan to start a computer consultancy business. People don't just need assistance but they also would need quality services. With all the demand for online jobs these days, you will also have more competitors to outshine making this type of business the most competitive among all.

You will only need a little capital to start this kind of business. Firstly, you will need your knowledge and skills with computers. You will also need a computer and a fast and reliable internet connection. People expect quick and efficient service so it is strongly advisable that you invest in good quality materials if you want your business to succeed.

You also won't need to think much about legalities since there are only a few legal considerations when it comes to putting up online businesses. There are a lot of articles and books that you can check online for guidance and reference.

Computers are today's main source of convenience. This makes it easier for you to market your service since most people nowadays own computers. Furthermore, besides being amazingly knowledgeable with computers, you will also need to be creative.

There are a lot of people that has skills and knowledge but only a few have fresh ideas and creative talents to offer. This should be your major marketing strategy to enhance the probability of attracting clients.

This type of business does not usually require you to do home service except for computer consultancy. That is why you will also need to educate yourself regarding accounting matters. This is with regard to the payments of your clients. Unlike with regular businesses where they deal with clients on a personal basis, you only deal with clients online. This makes it harder for you to ensure that your service is being paid. An adequate amount of reading and research will help you overcome this challenge.

  1. Online Shop
  2. Graphic Designing
  3. Print advertising shop
  4. Online tutorials
  5. Copy reading services
  6. Computer Consultancy

Home based businesses can range from service oriented business to those businesses that would require you space to put up a shop. There is also some businesses ideal for professionals and there are some businesses that can be started without much training from school.

There are a lot of ideas for starting a small business from home. It may be confusing but with the just the right amount of determination and planning, you will be able to know where to start. Your skills should always be your most important determining factor when you are unsure of what business venture to choose.

You can also think about the resources you have available. This will help you decide. In starting a small business from home, you need to make sure that you are fully prepared. This means that besides the brilliant ideas, you will also need careful planning and wise implementation.

Thinking about the legal considerations in starting your business should be part of the planning process. Although starting a home based business is practically easier to do than starting a huge business, you must still make sure to cover all the necessary requirements so you won't encounter any problems in the future.

The decision to start a business from home could be one of the wisest things that you can do. It is one of the easiest types of business ventures yet it's also one that requires a lot of determination and will. Since you are the only one that is solely responsible for all the decisions made in your business, you will also be the one most stressed and pressured. But don't take this negatively. The nature of starting this type of business must be a challenge for you. It is very easy to start a business from home but it could also be very challenging.

After thinking about what type of business venture to go into, you must prepare yourself for all the possible risks and challenges that you might encounter. Planning is one thing, implementation is another thin. After you know how to start a business from home you must also think of ways on how to maintain that business. After all, being successful in a home based business is not determined on achieving your goals alone but it's also on how you maintain that success.

What Is Boss Key Software and Why Would You Need It?

Boss key software goes way back in time. Even the earliest computer games had a boss key sequence that you could quickly press and it would appear as though you were diligently using a spreadsheet rather than goofing off playing a game. But games aren't the only time you might need to quickly hide what you're doing on screen.

Leaving aside any habit you might have for browsing adult entertainment sites - in which case you've probably already learned how to minimize your browser or switch tabs at a millisecond notice - there are plenty of occasions when you need to be able to instantly switch what you're doing.

Not just at work but at home if you're shopping for a present and don't want the person concerned to know what you're looking for.

So using a small piece of software that allows you to hit a precise combination of keys to do something on your computer. It's still regularly referred to as boss key software, even if it doesn't mean that you're hiding something from other people.

Windows even allows you the option to minimize everything and show a clear desktop, so it's actually quite a common thing to use. You may even have done that and wondered if you've broken your computer but that's another story.

In the same way that games have progressed, modern boss key software has extended way beyond just stopping some frantic game of killing aliens.

The best software is actually very configurable. So you can use different key sequences to perform different tasks.

The first thing to look for is the option for the software to start up whenever you start Windows. That is an essential requirement, otherwise you'd have to know in advance when you were likely to need the software and that would defeat most of the object of using it.

Then it's a matter of deciding what other things would be useful to stop in an instant.

If you work from home, you may use the CD in your computer to play some background music to keep you on track. Or maybe you switch between that and YouTube. Either way, it helps to be able to mute the sound on your computer when your phone rings or a Skype chat starts without having to slide the speaker volume down or figure out which program is making all the noise.

Another common use for boss key software is that it is actually likely to be used by your boss.

Some documents are confidential. So if you walk into the room when your boss is updating the pay spreadsheet or making notes for your next performance review, they don't necessarily have time to clear all the relevant program windows. Setting a boss key combination to minimize all word processor documents, spreadsheets and PDFs is a quick way to clear potentially private information in the blink of an eye.

All of which means that boss key software has evolved a lot from its origins on early computer games. And that it has lots of legitimate uses as well as covert ones.