April 18, 2018
Video Streaming And The Impatient Consumer
As websites continue to grow in size and function the use of video streaming has become a comprehensive way to manage what may seem to be complicated changes for site visitors.
The development of professional video streaming tours can help site visitors learn how to manage certain tasks.
One of the primary reasons these video streaming tours are so successful is that they can visually guide the visitor through the most complicated of sites.
Obviously the best-case scenario would be to have a site that is simplicity personified, but as more and more technologies are meshed together to provide your site visitor a unique online experience it can be beneficial to incorporate a video streaming site tour to enable your visitor the best chance at gaining the full use of your site.
For example let’s explore the possibilities of a fee-based membership site that allows a professional to gain access to freelance work in their field. The site visitor is inte
ested, but isn’t quite sure how the site will ultimately benefit them in locating work in their field of expertise.
A series of video streaming tutorials can help the visitor understand how the site functions, how they can locate work and how they manage their online jobs.
The online video takes them step by step through the process and shows them specific locations on the website where each function can be accessed.
These video tutorials are a very positive next step to the traditional help section. As the interactive nature of the web improves the notion of a glossary type help section seems antiquated.
A video streaming tour guide can be a great asset when wanting to move through a new learning curve in the fastest way possible.
One thing that had become very apparent to online business owners is that site visitors lack patience. They want to be able to access what they want to access and they want to do so quickly. If there is perceived value in a more complicated site they will extend the courtesy of learning what they need to learn, but they want your help. This is why video streaming tutorials can pack a powerful punch for sites that may seem a bit complicated when the site is first accessed.
As more and more traffic merges onto the information superhighway businesses will have to do an increasingly better job of leading customers to their site and then providing a means of understanding where they need to go and how to get there.
Think of traditional box stores. Each aisle will have signs that indicate what the customer might find in that aisle. This is the thinking behind the best websites. Bold signs direct the visitor to locations that will be best suited to their needs. Site designated search engines or site maps can help, but the online video tour guide is becoming a strong ally in the battle to help customers find the most value in your business website.
While a video-streaming tutorial is not the only answer it is one that is gaining support from a visually oriented customer base.
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March 16, 2018
ACNE – Basic Understanding
Acne is the bane of existence for nearly 17 million people who suffer from some form of acne.
Acne is not only embarrassing but also causes psychosocial effects such as: anxiety, depression, inferiority, insecurity, frustration and self-consciousness.
Acne can be in the form of blackheads, whiteheads, pimples or cysts. Can be on the face, neck, shoulders, upper back or chest.
The different definitions of acne are:
Acne blemish: A flaw in the skin
Acne pimple: A small, prominent, inflamed elevation of the skin
Blackhead: A condition of the skin characterized by a black tip.
Whitehead: A condition of the skin characterized by a small, firm, whitish elevation of the skin
Cysts: When the clogged pore is swollen, infected and forms a bump it’s called a “cyst”
Those most susceptible are teenagers and adolescents but it also affects many adults. Although the exact cause of acne is still unknown… there are certain triggers that might possibly contribute to it such as bacteria, blocked pores, hormonal changes, excess oil and also genetics may play a large part in it.
One thing you can be sure of…contrary to popular belief, poor hygiene and food such as chocolate does not cause acne.
Severe cases of acne may cause pitted skin and scarring. If you have deep acne scars you may want to go for dermabrasion or dermaplaning to give your skin a smoother appearance. These can be used on small areas of the face.
There are a wide variety of products available for acne treatment anywhere from the mildest lotions to the severest prescriptive forms of treatment. Also Dermaplaning maybe needed in some cases, more on that later. A study comparing popular acne remedies recently discovered relatively inexpensive lotions are as effective as powerful prescription antibiotics.
You’ll find many pros and cons regarding all forms of tre
tment but few of the many treatments that have come about over the years have given any lasting effect. Some treatments have actually been very unhealthy and dangerous for the user.
One treatment – Accutane, may cause severe birth defects and also cause depression which has led the FDA to strengthen its restrictions on its use. These new restrictions require manufacturers of Accutane and its generic versions to keep track of the doctors who prescribe the drug, and also the pharmacies that sell the drug and the patients who use it.
Because it is a high-risk drug, Accutane should be reserved for cases of “severe recalcitrant nodular acne,” according to the product’s labeling. This type of acne is resistant to standard acne treatment, including oral antibiotics, and is characterized by many nodules or cysts–inflammatory lesions filled with pus and lodged deep within the skin. These lesions can cause pain, permanent scarring, and negative psychological effects.
More common side effects of Accutane include lip inflammation and drying of the skin and mucous membranes, skin peeling on eyelids and dry nasal passages.
FDA’s experts say it’s a balancing act. The value of Accutane is clear, but when it comes to even one report of death–whether it’s suicide, miscarriage, or some other cause–FDA must make choices that will best protect the public’s health.
One alternative to lotions, medications and peels for acne is called a blue light laser which looks like a sun lamp and pointed toward the acne-infested area for a little over 15 minutes. I go to see AK Aesthetics for advise and treatment. It’s warm but not uncomfortable and the eyes are protected from the light. The treatment is used twice a week for four weeks and costs slightly over $100. The light goes through the skin to kill bacteria.
Some pointers on skin care:
Cleansing the skin once in the morning and once before bedtime is really all you need to remove the dirt and dead skin cells that may clog the pores. Washing too often will dry the skin and cause irritation.
Squeezing the pimples does more harm than good causing more inflammation, redness and also leads to scarring.
When buying products such as cleansers, moisturizers, make-up, etc., make a habit of reading the labels and look for “oil free” or “non-comedogenic” on those you buy.
As you’ve probably experienced before…the sun is very good at drying up acne for a short time but it doesn’t last and will definitely lead to wrinkles. Make sure you have at least a 30 SPF sunscreen when in the sun
Although food does not cause acne, it’s still a good idea to maintain a proper diet to give your skin all the nutrients that it needs to help maintain its healthy glow.
Fresh vegetables and fruits are a must along with complex carbohydrates such as whole grains and rice. And the old standby of drinking at least 8 glasses of water a day will keep the skin hydrated. A good way to get all the fruits and vegetables you need is to buy a really good juicer and drink several glasses a day.
A good probiotic multivitamin and antioxidants such as Green Tea will go a long way to keeping your skin healthy looking.
In order to completely eliminate acne there is still considerable knowledge yet unknown about the skin and what goes on underneath.
But one thing you can be sure of…many phases of research on the skin and its problems are going on all the time and will eventually lead to a more effective treatment and possibly a complete cure.
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March 4, 2018
What Is the Simplest Way to Transform Your Bedroom?
Sometimes everyone needs a change. Blue, which seemed like such a good idea at the time, just doesn’t seem quite right anymore. Bright colors that seem so lively in the spring and in the summer just make the grey of winter feel that much more dismal. Kids grow up and the cartoon character comforters that they had to have just a couple of years ago are now something that they would be horrified if their friends knew that they had it.
Whether your desire for change is matched to the seasons or you haven’t changed the look of your bedroom for years, you may find that you don’t have the budget for a total room makeover. Likewise, since you’ll find that your kids’ tastes change every few years, you may not want to make a huge investment when you transform their bedrooms. With Bed in a Bag sets, you’ll find that you don’t need to spend a lot in order to make a big difference.
The first simple change that you can make is to choose a neutral color for the walls and the carpet. Beige or off-white walls and similarly colored carpeting create a neutral palette for the design of your bedroom. Add traditional furniture to the mix – something that is simple and functional but that never goes out of style – and you are likely to find that transforming your be
room is not only remarkably fun and easy, but also cost-effective.
More than just buying a new comforter or a new comforter set, investing in a Bed in a Bag will enable you to change everything about the way that your bedroom feels – not just the way that it looks. As will investing in cushions for your bed. I recommend velvet cushion covers for that quality feel.
Want to create a bedroom that’s more grown up for your kids? Try a Bed in a Bag with a dolphin theme – a comforter, matching sheets and pillow cases. With a Bed in a Bag, you won’t have to worry about finding sheets that match the comforter. You won’t have to worry about picking up full size sheets and twin size comforter. Everything will be there in one place.
Similarly, if you can’t decide on a single color for you transformed bedroom, consider a Bed in a Bag set that features a striped comforter, pillow case, sheets. Add a matching throw rug to bring out a particular shade and you can complete the look – all without spending a fortune.
Of course, there are other options for transforming the look of your bedroom as well. You may find that there is a particular comforter set that you love – perhaps something in a Damask. But maybe there’s a problem. Maybe in the winter you love the way that the burgundy shade catches the light but as spring and summer creep in, you realize that, with the different light, the shimmer seems all wrong or doesn’t seem to be there at all.
Do you have to give up on having the comforter set that you love? Not if it is made in other colors as well. If the same damask is available in a pale blue, for example, you will be able to invest in a second comforter – swapping them out with the change of seasons. Change your comforter, the cushion covers, the bed ruffle and your throw pillows and you’ll find a whole new look.
Or, if you don’t want to buy a second comforter of the same style, why not consider a great duvet to cover your comforter for the season? A different color, lace instead of something heavier, simply by covering your comforter you can create a whole new look – transform the room with next to no effort at all, and all for a low price.
Making a big change in your bedroom doesn’t have to mean spending a lot of money. A Bed in a Bag, a new comforter set: these simple changes, along with rearranging the furniture can allow you to create a drastic change on a minimal budget. Whether your kids are looking for a change because they have outgrown the bedroom where you’ve read them stories and tucked them in, or you just don’t feel like looking at the colors or the pattern in your bedroom, it’s good to know that you’re not trapped: all if takes is a simple change and the room will be transformed.
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If you begin cycling
February 21, 2018
Bicycle Rims And Wheels, Your Bike Cant Go Anywhere Without Them
The first bicycle wheels were from a horse drawn cart, made of wood with a metal band round the bicycle rim, very hard and very uncomfortable to ride. Then a man called Dunlop (Scottish) invented the pneumatic tire, this along with Macadam (another Scot) inventing the tar road surface made cycling a lot more comfortable.
The bicycle rim, like the bicycle frame hasn’t changed much in design, its still round and always will be. From the first wooden rims the next were made of steel, then alloy and now if you can afford it, carbon. Of all bicycle parts the bicycle rim can make a big difference to how your bike handles. First the weight of your rim affects your sprinting and climbing as the weight will low you down, for a long, flat effort the weight isn’t so important as when you get the wheels rolling the weight can help to keep them going. The shape of the rim can be important also, a flat rim is best for climbing as aerodynamics are not so important on a hill, a deep section, aero, rim will help you cut through the air, b
t in a cross wind could cause you handling problems. Before starting this repair, I would purchase a bike workstand. One that I use is the Tacx Spider Workstand. Its a reasonable price for you.
Bicycle Rims Materials
The different materials used for rims are very important also, steel is heavy and if damaged can be difficult to pull back into shape, but because its so strong it is quite difficult to bend in the first place and steel is cheaper than all the other materials. Alloy is probably the most popular rim, it can be made in any shape and profile, flat or aero, but not too deep as it would then weigh too much, most deep section rims are of a alloy braking section nearest the tire which is then mounted to a carbon deep section for lightness and aerodynamics and a very beautiful looking bicycle rim. As with most things if money is no problem you can go for the best, this would be an all carbon rim, strong and very light, but there are a few problems with these rims, first they don’t brake so well in wet conditions and you must use special brake blocks for carbon and they can be expensive, also the rim has to be perfectly round and not have any bulges in the rim wall as this will make braking quite erratic, carbon is a difficult material to work with and must be well looked after.
Types Of Rim To Consider
There are also two types of rim to consider and this depends on which kind of tire you want to use, first there are tubular tires these are glued on to the bicycle rim, cost more and are difficult to repair after a puncture, but for racing they feel and ride wonderfully. Clincher tires have improved a lot recently and are nearly as good as tubulars for performance and are easily repairable and more reasonably priced. Most manufacturers make all styles in both systems.
So which should I buy? Not an easy answer, as there is so much to choose from, years ago you went to your local bike shop, picked out which hubs, spokes and rims you wanted and he would build your wheels, but now most rim makers also manufacture there own wheel sets, Mavic, Shimano and Campagnolo are probably the best known, check out there web-sites for all there new goodies, there are other brands and if you go to your local cycle shop or look in the bike magazines you’ll find them. Dont forget its a lot easier with a cycle workstand. There is a lot to choose form, but they are all round.
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How to reduce your tax payments
February 11, 2018
The Seven Deadly Tax Sins
It’s that time again, the April 15 tax deadline is looming large. If youre like most people, you havent gathered all of your tax records, let alone filled your return.
Before you dig in and get started, take this opportunity to first review a list of a few tax deductions to which you may be entitled if you itemize deductions but most people overlook. Many of these deductions are subject to various limitations, so consider getting professional help from your tax advisor and accountant to determine which deductions you qualify for and which items apply to your specific circumstances.
Remember, there are hundreds of deductions throughout the tax laws; many of them can be quite obscure but also quite lucrative. Here are seven commonly missed deductions to keep top of mind:
Points on Refinancing: With interest rates so low in 2003, there was a great deal of refinancing activity. Any points you pay to refinance your home can be deducted ratably over the life of the new loan. Furthermore, all unamortized points on old refinancing are deducted in the year of the new refinancing.
Even when travelling you can save on your tax return. This will then help save more money in the long run. So when booking travel consider a Airbnb discount code, and save even more.
Health Insurance Premiums: Any health insurance premiums you pay, including some long-term care premiums based on your age, are potentially deductible. Medical expenses have to reach 7.5% of your adjusted gross income before they give you any tax benefit. Self-employed people can deduct 100% of health insurance premiums paid for themselves, their spou
es and their dependents.
Non-Cash Charitable Contributions: If you have used your charge card for contributions to charity, remember that the deduction is allowed in the year that you made the charge, not when you actually pay the bill. Also, you may write off certain out-of-pocket expenses related to charitable activities. Appraisal fees paid to value property donated to charities may be taken as a miscellaneous deduction subject to the 2% floor on miscellaneous deductions.
Higher-Education Expenses: If your adjusted gross income wasnt more than $65,000 ($130,000 for married, filing jointly) in 2003, you can get an above-the-line deduction for as much as $3,000 for any higher-education tuition and fee expense you paid. For 2004, the deduction can be as much as $4,000. For those at higher adjusted gross incomes limits ($80,000 single, $160,000 married filing jointly) the deduction is limited to $2,000 for 2004. This deduction must be coordinated with other education credits and savings vehicles.
Work-Related Expenses: You can write off many work-related and work-search expenses, such as education that maintains or improves your skills, certain business tools, dues to labor unions, cell phone depreciation, certain expenses to search for job in your present occupation, including employment agency fees, resum preparation, and travel expenses (local and out of town) and cleaning and laundry bills when on a business trip. Work-related expenses are subject to the 2% floor on miscellaneous deductions. Furthermore, if you buy a new SUV for business use that weighs more 6,000 pounds, and file Schedule C or other business tax return you may be allowed to write off the full amount (up to $102,000 in 2004) in one year as a business expense subject to limitations.
Clean-Fuel Deduction: If you are not in the market for a large SUV for business, you still can get a deduction for your personal car, another above-the-line deduction of up to $2,000 for 2003 ($1,500 for 2004) of the cost of buying a clean-fuel vehicle or a car that uses a significant source of energy other than gasoline. That includes hybrid cars, such as the Toyota Prius, the Honda Insight and the Honda Civic Hybrid. You get the deduction in the year you start using the car, and you must be the original owner.
Investment and Tax Expenses: In addition to forgetting to deduct tax-preparation fees and the portion of your legal, accounting or financial planner fees that relate to tax planning, many people miss deducting investment expenses. Those include certain fees paid to your financial advisor and/or broker and certain IRA fees you may pay directly. It also may include mileage for meetings and long-distance phone calls to your advisor or broker. Dont forget to include deductions for the cost of your investment publications or subscriptions, safe deposit boxes used for investment-related documents, these deductions are subject to the 2% floor on miscellaneous deductions.
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