Researchers identify possible catalyst for converting methane to methanol at room temperature

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Scientists would very much like to find a way to convert methane (the primary component in natural gas) to methanol at room temperature. Doing so would offer a new source of liquid fuel that would be readily available due to the abundance of methane. Unfortunately, researchers have found it difficult going due to the unreactive nature of methane. In this new effort, the researchers report on progress they believe they have made in achieving that goal.As Labinger reports, that progress has come in two forms. The first was developing an aid for picking out the active site of a heterogeneous catalyst from a host of candidates. The second involved creating a design for converting methane to ethanol that would be both efficient and achievable at room temperature.To create their design, the team looked at an iron-containing structure generated via a zeolite (a type of mineral) that had been reported back in 1997. Since that time, researchers have used various techniques to ascertain that such structures contain another structure known as the α-Fe(ii) center, an important component in converting methane to methanol at room temperature. The new design involved proposing a means of describing a structure with an unusual monometallic iron center. They then conducted experiments using Mössbauer spectroscopy that indicated they were on the right track, which could lead eventually to finding the catalyst they are seeking.The finding by the team is good news, Labinger suggests, though he cautions that it is unlikely that the same approach could be used for solving other catalytic problems. Journal information: Nature Explore further 3-D printed polymer turns methane to methanol Citation: Researchers identify possible catalyst for converting methane to methanol at room temperature (2016, August 18) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-08-catalyst-methane-methanol-room-temperature.htmlcenter_img Ball and stick model of methane. Credit: Ben Mills/Public Domain © 2016 Phys.org (Phys.org)—A team of researchers from Belgium and the U.S. has identified the active site of an iron-containing catalyst that has raised hopes for designing a practically useful catalyst that might make converting methane to methanol a possibility. In their paper published in the journal Nature, the researchers describe their efforts, what they discovered and why they believe their findings may lead to a practical way to convert methane to a more efficient energy resource. Jay Labinger, with the California Institute of Technology offers a News & Views piece outlining the work done by the team in the same journal issue. More information: Benjamin E. R. Snyder et al. The active site of low-temperature methane hydroxylation in iron-containing zeolites, Nature (2016). DOI: 10.1038/nature19059AbstractAn efficient catalytic process for converting methane into methanol could have far-reaching economic implications. Iron-containing zeolites (microporous aluminosilicate minerals) are noteworthy in this regard, having an outstanding ability to hydroxylate methane rapidly at room temperature to form methanol. Reactivity occurs at an extra-lattice active site called α-Fe(II), which is activated by nitrous oxide to form the reactive intermediate α-O; however, despite nearly three decades of research, the nature of the active site and the factors determining its exceptional reactivity are unclear. The main difficulty is that the reactive species—α-Fe(II) and α-O—are challenging to probe spectroscopically: data from bulk techniques such as X-ray absorption spectroscopy and magnetic susceptibility are complicated by contributions from inactive ‘spectator’ iron. Here we show that a site-selective spectroscopic method regularly used in bioinorganic chemistry can overcome this problem. Magnetic circular dichroism reveals α-Fe(II) to be a mononuclear, high-spin, square planar Fe(II) site, while the reactive intermediate, α-O, is a mononuclear, high-spin Fe(IV)=O species, whose exceptional reactivity derives from a constrained coordination geometry enforced by the zeolite lattice. These findings illustrate the value of our approach to exploring active sites in heterogeneous systems. The results also suggest that using matrix constraints to activate metal sites for function—producing what is known in the context of metalloenzymes as an ‘entatic’ state—might be a useful way to tune the activity of heterogeneous catalysts.last_img read more

Dozens of new ultradiffuse galaxies discovered in Abell 2744

first_img Citation: Dozens of new ultra-diffuse galaxies discovered in Abell 2744 (2017, January 4) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-01-dozens-ultra-diffuse-galaxies-abell.html © 2017 Phys.org UDGs are extremely-low-density galaxies. The largest UDGs have sizes similar the Milky Way but have only about one percent as many stars as our home galaxy. The mystery of UDGs is still baffling scientists as they try explain why these faint but large galaxies are not ripped apart by the tidal field of their host clusters. Furthermore, it is not clear what fraction of UDGs are “failed” giant luminous galaxies, “inflated dwarfs,” or some other phenomenon.Abell 2744 is a giant galaxy cluster located nearly 4 billion light years away in the Sculptor constellation. It is one of the most massive and most disturbed galaxy clusters known to date. Its intracluster light fraction is high and its stellar population consistent with the disruption of luminous galaxies, which makes it an excellent location to search for UDGs.That is why a team of researchers led by Steven Janssens of the University of Toronto, Canada, has investigated Abell 2744 using data obtained with the Hubble Space Telescope (HST) Frontier Fields (FF) program. FF is known for producing the deepest images to date of galaxy clusters and gravitational lensing. The analysis of FF data allowed the astronomers to distinguish dozens of new UDGs in this giant galaxy cluster.”We report the discovery of a large population of ultra-diffuse galaxies in the massive galaxy cluster Abell 2744 (z= 0.308) as observed by the Hubble Frontier Fields program,” the researchers wrote in the paper.As a result, the team detected 76 new UDGs—41 in the cluster field and 35 in the parallel field. They also estimated the total number of UDGs that Abell 2744 contains. According to the paper, given the fact that the analyzed data from the observations samples only a small portion of the galaxy cluster, there should be approximately 2,100 ultra-diffuse galaxies in Abell 2744. The researchers noted that this is 10 times the number of UDGs that exist in a similar cluster known as Abell 1656 (or Coma Cluster).”Abell 2744 hosts an estimated 2133±613 UDGs, 10 times the number in Coma,” the paper reads.The research also allowed the scientists to estimate the number of ultra-compact dwarf (UCD) galaxies in Abell 2744. According to their calculations, there are about 385 UCDs in the galaxy cluster.The researchers concluded that some UCDs in Abell 2744 may have once been nuclei or satellites of infalling UDGs, noting that the latter are ultimately destroyed by tidal forces. “As UDGs fall in and dissolve (and, presumably, blend into the intra-cluster light), they leave behind a residue of unbound, but long-lived UCDs,” the team wrote. (Phys.org)—Astronomers have found a total of 76 new ultra-diffuse galaxies (UDGs) in the massive galaxy cluster designated Abell 2744 (also known as Pandora’s Cluster). The discovery updates the current census of galaxies in this cluster and could help better understand the nature of UDGs in general. The findings were presented in a paper published Dec. 30 on arXiv.org. Explore further More information: Ultra-diffuse and Ultra-compact Galaxies in the Frontier Fields Cluster Abell 2744, arXiv:1701.00011 [astro-ph.GA] arxiv.org/abs/1701.00011AbstractWe report the discovery of a large population of Ultra-diffuse Galaxies (UDGs) in the massive galaxy cluster Abell 2744 (z=0.308) as observed by the Hubble Frontier Fields program. Since this cluster is ~5 times more massive than Coma, our observations allow us to extend 0.7 dex beyond the high-mass end of the relationship between UDG abundance and cluster mass reported by van der Burg et al. 2016. Using the same selection criteria as van der Burg et al. 2016, A2744 hosts an estimated 2133 +/- 613 UDGs, ten times the number in Coma. As noted by Lee & Jang 2016, A2744 contains numerous unresolved compact objects, which those authors identified predominantly as globular clusters. However, these objects have luminosities that are more consistent with ultra-compact dwarf (UCD) galaxies. The abundances of both UCDs and UDGs scale with cluster mass as a power law with a similar exponent, although UDGs and UCDs have very different radial distributions within the cluster. The radial surface density distribution of UCDs rises sharply toward the cluster centre, while the surface density distribution of the UDG population is essentially flat. Together, these observations hint at a picture where some UCDs in A2744 may have once been associated with infalling UDGs. As UDGs fall in and dissolve, they leave behind a residue of unbound ultra-compact dwarfs. Hubble Frontier Fields view of Abell 2744. Credit: NASA, ESA, and J. Lotz, M. Mountain, A. Koekemoer, and the HFF Team (STScI). ‘Pandora’s Cluster’ seen by Spitzer This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

Putting Sindh on capital stage

first_imgDelhi is set to experience a cultural treat as Department of Art, Culture, and Languages, Government of Delhi along with Sindhi Academy is up with the four-day Sindhi Drama Festival 2014. In a bid to provide new direction to Sindhi Theatre, Vichhoo, a major production of The Impostures of Scapin by French playwright Moliere and Muhinji Zaat, a Sindhi translation of Jat Hi Puchho Sadhu Ki will be featured at the festival. Vichhoo is directed by the actor-director-critic Manohar Khushalani. The play in Sindhi, is translated by Mohini Hingorani, from Moliere’s Les Fourberies de Scapin (The Impostures of Scapin), enacted for the first time in 1671.  Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’The story of Vichhoo revolves around two young men, Kanu and Mohan who take the advantage of their fathers’ absence and fall in love with unlikely and penniless beauties. Kanu has secretly married Khimya and Mohan has secretly fallen in love with Mira and both need money to help solve their dilemmas. But their fathers, Motumal and Hardasmal, return from a trip with their own marriage plans for their respective sons.Vadhu, after hearing many pleas for help, comes to the rescue of the young romantics. The final scene of the first act is a vaudeville/music hall version of Molière’s famous scene in which Vadhumal spins a yarn of kidnapping, foreigners and ransom. No one knows who Khimya and Mira really are.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixThere is a final chase and dance among all the participants, which, inevitably, becomes the raucous, delightful curtain call. The other play Muhinji Zaat which is to be staged, is a comedy which specialises in churning out educated illiterates. The play is a Sindhi translation of famous Marathi playwright Vijay Tendulkars’s famous comedy Pahije Jatiche from Vasant Deo’s Hindi translation Jat Hi Puchho Sadhu Ki by Asha Bhatia.  It is perhaps the first Sindhi performance of Vijay Tendulkar in Delhi directed by Prakash Bhatia. The play is an attempt to bring before the audience a different kind of comedy which is seldom tried in Delhi’s Sindhi theatre circle.When: 17-20 AprilWhere: Sri Ram Center for Art and Culture Timing: 6:30 PM onwardslast_img read more

A win wouldve been nice Steve Smith

first_imgHe was aiming for a win but Australian cricket captain Steve Smith on Tuesday said he was not too disappointed with the draw against India in the third cricket Test as it proved just enough to reclaim the Border-Gavaskar trophy. The hosts won back the trophy with their 2-0 lead going into the final Test in Sydney. Australia had finished their second innings at 318/9 at lunch and set India a target of 384 runs.The visitors finished at 174/6 with R Ashwin and Mahendra Singh Dhoni holding ground. The Indian skipper later announced his retirement from Test cricket. “It would have been nice to have won, that’s for sure. But it’s very satisfying to win the series and reclaim the trophy again. We had lost badly the last time but it was obviously in completely different conditions in India. We still have a lot of work to do in those conditions. We do play very well in our own backyard. It’s nice to have that trophy back now and hopefully the next time we go back to India, we can do a better job over there,” said Smith. Also Read – Khel Ratna for Deepa and Bajrang, Arjuna for JadejaAustralia delayed their declaration in the morning, thanks to rain. It allowed Shaun Marsh to close on to a hundred but he couldn’t finish the job as he was run-out on 99. “It was obviously very disappointing for him. I ran out a message about 20 minutes earlier and said ‘you have got until lunch’. I think that’s when he started to go after the bowlers a little bit. I changed my mind a couple of times about the declaration. I wasn’t quite sure when to pull out. But I didn’t really want to give India a crack with the batsmen they had in the shed and how good that wicket was,” Smith added.When asked if the close Adelaide run-chase played on to the decision for delaying declaration, Smith said, “A little bit. I think the wicket out here was much better than Adelaide. At least that pitch broke up and spun a lot, which created opportunities there. We certainly didn’t have that out here. It was a very good wicket to bat on and we didn’t want to give them an opportunity.”last_img read more

Death anniversary of Shyama Prasad Mookerjee observed

first_imgKolkata: For the first time, the Mamata Banerjee government has decided to observe the death anniversary of Bharatiya Jana Sangh founder Shyama Prasad Mookerjee on Saturday. Ministers Firhad Hakim and Sobhandeb Chattopadhyay would attend the programme before Mookerjee’s bust at South Kolkata’s Keoratala crematorium, according to the formal invite issued by the Information and Cultural Affairs Department. Chattopadhyay said Mookerjee would never have approved the BJP’s communal agenda for the sake of getting political mileage. “The way BJP is bringing religion into the political arena, and indulging in the politics of polarisation to create an atmosphere of hatred, and gain political mileage, I don’t think Shyama Prasad would have approved all this,” he said.last_img read more

15yearold boy found murdered in vacant plot

first_imgA 15-year-old boy was found murdered in a vacant plot of land in North-east Delhi’s Harsh Vihar area on Monday evening.According to the police, the deceased boy has been identified as Raza. The incident came to light on Sunday evening when he went missing after he went to walk outside his house after dinner in the I block of the Sunder Nagri colony. His family started searching for him frantically and informed the nearby police station. On Monday at around 4.30pm, a relative spotted Raza’s body in a vacant plot of land near the Jail Road and informed his parents. Also Read – Man arrested for making hoax call at IGI airportRaza’s father, Bhura, is a wholesale fruit seller. Raza is survived by his parents and four brothers and three sisters and was the eldest amongst them. Raza used to study in class IV of a local private school. Raza’s father said that he studied in a government school upto class V but was later shifted to the private school near their house. “I wanted my son to study in an English medium school so I shifted Raza to the private school near our house. However, the school authorities denied him admission in class VI because of bad academic background so he was made to start his studies from class I in this school,” said Bhura.He added that Raza’s neck was tied with a rope and his face was completely smashed. After his body was found by their relative, Raza’s family informed the police which took his body to a nearby hospital.last_img read more

Remove thick bituminous overlay from all bridges PWD

first_imgKolkata: State Principal Secretary, Public Works Department (PWD), Arnab Roy has directed executive engineers of all divisions to remove thick bituminous overlay if any from the bridges and flyovers and submit an action taken report within 10 days.Directions have further been issued to the engineers to clear all vegetation from the bridges and its undersides including tree roots.”After inspection, we have stumbled upon thick bituminous overlay on a number of bridges which is more than the design parameter. This may result in subsidence of the portion where this overlay has been found. So we Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifehave directed engineers of all divisions to make sure that the bridges conform to thedesign parameters,” a senior official of the state PWD said.The executive engineers of all divisions will remove the super-imposed dead load on these bridges and flyovers. According to the directions issued by Arnab Roy, Principal Secretary of PWD, thework of removing the bituminous overlay as well as the vegetation in the bridges including tree roots should be done with immediacy and a report in this regard should be sent to the joint secretary (Roads) within 10 days. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedIt may be mentioned that the state PWD department has already undertaken repair works of as many as 15 bridges that have been labeled as severely distressed after a thorough inspection that had followed after the cave-in of a portion of the Majerhat bridge on September 4.It may be mentioned that the Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) has already constituted an Advisory Committee for monitoring the health of the bridges in the city.It has prepared a list of 15 bridges that need structural health audit on a priority basis. The list includes Dhakuria Bridge connecting Golpark with Dhakuria, Bijon Setu connecting Gariahat with Kasba, Aurobindo Setu connecting Gouribari with Ultadanga, Chetla Bridge connecting Kalighat with Chetla, Kalighat Bridge connecting Kalighat with Gopalnagar, Durgapur Bridge connecting New Alipore with Chetla, Ultadanga Flyover connecting EM Bypass with VIP Road, Sukanta Setu connecting Jadavpur with Santoshpur, Bankim Setuconnecting Howrah Maidan with Howrah Station, Chingrighata flyover connecting EM Bypass with Salt Lake, Sealdah flyover, Bridge Number 4 on Park Circus rail line, Jibanananda Setu near Jadavpur police station and the arch type bridge at Karunamoyee in Tollygunge.State Urban Development minister Firhad Hakim has himself visited more than 10 of these bridges.last_img read more

4yearold boy falls from pool car remains unhurt

first_imgKolkata: Two traffic sergeants rescued a 4-year-old boy who fell from a pool car while travelling home from school on Darga Road on Friday.Police said traffic sergeants — Raj Vijay Banerjee and Suman Mukherjee — were on duty in the area. They went to the spot as soon as the matter came to their notice and rescued the boy. The incident took place on Darga Road at Beniapukur. The boy, who is a nursery student, was travelling in a Maruti Omni car. Its sliding door somehow opened when the driver applied a sudden brake and the boy fell down from the car. The boy, however, remained unhurt. He was later handed over to his parents, who didn’t lodge any complaint against the pool car. The car has been intercepted by the police.last_img

Some instigated farmers to cultivate wheat in Murshidabad

first_imgKolkata: Asish Banerjee, the state Agriculture minister, in the state Assembly said there are some who have instigated farmers to cultivate wheat in Murshidabad, where it is restricted due to wheat blast disease.The minister attacked CPI(M) MLA from Domkal, Anisur Rahman alleging that the latter ‘instigated farmers’. In reply to a question of Rahman, Banerjee said necessary steps have been taken to support farmers where wheat cultivation is not possible for two years. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeIt may be mentioned that cultivation of wheat is not possible in Nadia and Murshidabad for two years due to wheat blast. The Agriculture minister further said: “In such a situation Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee has taken necessary steps to support the farmers. Seeds for alternate farming were distributed among them free of cost so that they can cultivate mustard, pulses etc when wheat cultivation is not possible.” He added that there was restriction on wheat cultivation for 2017-18 and 2018-19 agriculture period — ‘krishi barsha’. Now, the experts will assess the situation and inform us from when wheat cultivation can be resumed. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedIn reply to another question by MLA Samir Kumar Jana, the Agriculture minister said: “The cultivation of food grains has increased in the state. While it was 1.82 crore tonne in 2017-18 ‘krishi barsha’, the figure stood at 1.75 crore tonne in 2016-17.” He maintained that the cultivable land has also been increased in Bengal with the various steps taken by the state government. Citing an example, the minister said around 1,000 bigha of land has been made suitable for cultivation only in Balurghat. The state government has ensured proper irrigation facilities and made other necessary arrangements to increase cultivable land in the state. The minister informed the Assembly that the state government also provides with the farmer’s share of crop insurance. In reply to a question related to crop insurance for farmers in North Bengal, Banerjee said the same has been given for farmers in Darjeeling, Kalimong, Jalpaiguri, Alipurduar, Cooch Behar, Malda, North and South Dinajpur.last_img read more

WBSEDCL receives Central Board of Irrigation and Power award

first_imgKolkata: West Bengal State Electricity Distribution Company Limited (WBSEDCL) has received the Central Board of Irrigation and Power (CBIP) Award for ‘Best Performing Power Distribution Utility’ during the celebration of CBIP Day on January 4.Rajesh Pandey, CMD, WBSEDCL received the award from RK Singh, minister of state, Independent Charge Power and New & Renewable Energy at a programme held in New Delhi. The award has been conferred on WBSEDCL in recognition of its outstanding contribution to the nation by providing reliable and cost-effective electricity to its customers for industrial and overall economic development through optimisation of available resources in the distribution sector. Also Read – 3 injured, flight, train services hit as rains lash BengalA press statement issued by the CPRO WBSEDCL, Biswarup Mukherjee said: “This is yet another jewel in WBSEDCL’s crown, an appreciation of endeavour to reach quality power and better service to consumers across the state. It may be mentioned that WBSEDCL earlier in December last year received an award for ‘one of the best innovations’ for ‘Energy storage through Hydro’ at IPPAI Power Awards, organised by the Independent Power Producers Association of India (IPPAI) at Belgaum in Karnataka. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe award was conferred on WBSEDCL for it’s innovation and sustainability at the 900 MW Purulia Pumped Storage Project (PPSP) and its futuristic approach for the upcoming 1,000MW Turga Pumped Storage Project and proposed 900MW Bandu Pumped Storage Project. Both Turga and Bandu projects are coming up in Purulia, adjacent to the site of the pumped storage project. WBSEDCL also bagged the prestigious SKOCH Award Energy Silver in December last year for Purulia Pumped Storage Hydel Project. The awards are in recognition of the pioneering projects undertaken by WSEDCL to provide 24×7 quality and uninterrupted power supply to over 1.85 crore valued consumers. This is yet another achievement of West Bengal power sector.last_img read more

Staying true to their classical roots

first_imgHaving grown up together and learning music, playing jugalbandi comes naturally to Lakshay Mohan and Aayush Mohan. One on sitar, the other on sarod, these young brothers are well–known amongst the music fraternity and art connoisseurs. Hailing from the Maihar Gharana, Lakshay and Aayush have been acknowledged as one of the greatest cultural motivators and icons for the younger generation for preserving and propagating Indian Classical Music. Eminent guru such as Pandit Uma Shankar Mishra, Padmabhushan Sharan Rani, Pandit Balwant Rai Verma and Pandit Tejendra Narayan Majumdar have given them a solid foundation. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe duo became the first Indians to perform at the Grammy Museum, Los Angeles in 2015.They have performed across the globe at prestigious festivals and venues some of which are the Grammy Museum, Los Angeles ; Learn Quest Music Conference, Boston ; David and Dorthea Garfield Theatre, San Diego ; Abbey Theatre, Dublin ; Sawai Gandharva Festival, Pune ; Gunidas Sangeet Sammelan ; Mumbai ; Saptak Festival, Ahmedabad ; Taj Mahotsav, Agra. Lakshay and Aayush are known to connect to all kinds of listeners while preserving and incorporating old musical compositions and techniques in their playing. “We always maintain the discipline and true essence of classical music in our performance. So a purist or a connoisseur would never find anything ‘un-classical’ in it but at the same time the presentation is planned keeping in mind the balanced role of all aspects so that it can appeal to the musical sensibilities of a new listener also,” said Lakshay. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveIn an era, when most youngsters are turning away from classical music, it becomes a task to retain the interest of listeners. And although Indian classical music will never become as popular as western music, Lakshay and Aayush believe that the future is not bad. “The number of youngsters taking up classical music was always less because it involves lots of determination, inborn talent and perseverance to master this art. But again the number of listeners will always be limited due to the nature of this music and hence there is no need for large number of performers. Classical music will always have its own audience and it has survived against all odds. till now.” Only a few among millions have the ear for classical music and since the listeners are so scarce, it takes a toll on the people who have taken Indian classical music as a profession. “Taking something as a profession means you must be able to earn enough money through it to support yourself and your family. Not many people can earn money if the demand for classical is so less. There are so many other quick ways to get entertained that only a small section has the patience to develop taste for classical,” said Aayush.A jugulabandi is much more than just playing together on same or different instruments. It takes a lot of practice to be in sync and one must understand the other’s harmony to improvise and present aesthetically appealing music. Over the years, people’s taste in music has evolved and they don’t want to go for a jugalbandi, instead, concerts or band performances appeal to them more. So, does that mean Indian classical also needs to evolve according to people’s taste in music?”It is quite natural for all art forms to evolve with time and classical music has always been changing gradually over years. But evolving does not mean that it loses its identity and essence completely in order to cater to the audience who are unaware of its true form.””If that happens, it would be a disaster because we would be depriving future generations of the true feel or experience of this music,” explained Lakshay.last_img read more

Risheehat Tea Estate to reopen from today

first_imgDarjeeling: Following the meeting between the management and trade unions convened by the Assistant Labour Commissioner in Darjeeling, it was decided to reopen the Risheehat Tea Estate from Thursday. The meeting resolved that wages will be cleared on March 28 and arrears will be paid on March 30.”The workers also have to ensure that there is peace in the gardens and that the management does not feel insecure,” stated Balam Tamang, president, Darjeeling Terai Dooars Plantation Labour Union (DTDPLU- affiliated to the GJM). Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe management of Risheehat Tea Estate near Darjeeling town had declared a suspension of work on March 19. The suspension of work came on the heels of Himalayan Plantation Labour Union (HPWU- affiliated to the GNLF) stopping the plucking of first flush tea leaves over non-payment of arrears. “The decision was taken to reduce the hardship of the workers, in their greater interest,” stated Sandeep Mukherjee, principal advisor, Darjeeling Tea Association. The garden, situated 15km from Darjeeling, has a workforce of more than 1,100. In another development, the Kanchenview Tea Estate in Darjeeling has been closed down. Mukherjee claimed that the lockout is owing to industrial unrest.last_img read more

KMDA to repair Sealdah flyover soon

first_imgKolkata: The consulting agency engaged by Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) to do the health study of Sealdah flyover, popularly known as Vidyapati Setu, has stated that the bridge is in need of repair.”The preliminary report has pointed out that the Sealdah flyover is in need of repair. But the condition is not such that it needs immediate work. We have sought a detailed report from the consulting agency, in which they will specify the areas that need to be repaired,” state Urban Development minister Firhad Hakim said. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataHakim has already brought the report to the notice of Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. A senior KMDA official said that the detailed report will be submitted in the month of July and the tender will be floated for repair of the bridge. “There are seven other bridges for which we have already engaged a consultant and their health study is going on in full swing,” the official said. The flyover, set up in the late 1970s, is one of the busiest in the city. It may be mentioned that soon after the caving in of Majerhat bridge in September last year, the state government had prepared a list of 15 bridges for structural health audit. The list included Dhakuria bridge, Bijon Setu, Auro- bindo Setu, Chetla bridge, Kalighat Bridge, Durgapur bridge and Sealdah flyover among others.last_img read more

Saxena to represent HundrED in India

first_imgHundrED, a Finland based global non-profit organisation recently appointed Amit Saxena, Vice President, Education of Sparsh Group as its Ambassador from India.The organisation present in 70 countries and has appointed 250 Ambassadors across the globe, till date – who would support improvement in education and inspire a movement through encouraging valuable, impressive and calculable innovations to spread, mindful of context, across the world. Lasse Leponiemi, the Executive Director of HundrED said: “HundrED has a unique solution-oriented approach to education. By improving education worldwide, we witnessed tremendous growth in our Ambassador engagement, and we are grateful to our Ambassadors for helping us create a global grass roots revolution in the education sector.” Also Read – Add new books to your shelfOn being appointed as the Indian Ambassador to the organisation’s initiative, Amit stated: “I am very excited about this new engagement with HundrED, as the organisation is a global community of innovative education enthusiasts.” Saxena feels that this association will help him identify education innovations spread across the world, by discovering and sharing innovative practices from their local area or field of expertise which deserves to be recognised. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsive”We need an innovative approach in our outlook to face emerging challenges. And, as at our K-12 Schools we have been consistently trying to break the glass ceiling, there is nothing better than HundrED – which is a place of meeting of mind wherein we all not only come across innovations but also help institutions to grow from just their country’s perspective to see its ability to expand and impact around the globe,” said Saxena, who looks after top-ranked K-12 Schools and higher education institutions in India.last_img read more

The Limbless Irish Aristocrat who Traveled the World Without Arms or Legs

first_imgArthur MacMurrough Kavanagh is one of Irish history’s most remarkable characters. Born into an ancient Irish aristocratic line, he traveled the world, crossing Central Asia and working for the East India Company across the Indian subcontinent. He earned a scandalous reputation as a notorious charmer, and is rumored to have fathered many illegitimate children. On returning to Ireland he became an important 19th century landholder, politician, and a staunch Unionist.Kavanagh achieved a remarkable amount during his life. However, his story is all the more notable given that he was born without any arms or legs.Arthur MacMurrough KavanaghKavanagh was born in 1831 in County Carlow, to a family with an ancient Irish Catholic pedigree. His father was descended from the Kings of Leinster, yet had converted to Protestantism in order to allow him to become an MP. The family therefore formed part of the wealthy landholding class that ruled over (largely) Catholic tenant farmers.According to the BBC, Kavanagh was born without any hands or feet, and his arms and legs were little more than stumps. Given the lack of opportunity for disabled people at the time, had he not been born into a high-ranking family, it is likely that he would have ended his life destitute, begging for alms on the streets of Dublin. However, Kavanagh’s mother was determined that his disability should not prevent him from leading a full and active life.Dubh Linn Gardens, Dublin Castle. Photo by J.H. Janßen – Own work CC BY-SA 3.0,With the help of his mother and governess, Anne Fleming, Kavanagh learned to use his body from a young age. He was able to use his stumps to handle objects, and could even read and write, turning pages with his teeth and using his stumps to hold a pen.Perhaps most significantly, however, he learned to ride horses. With the aid of a specially designed saddle and harness, he became a skilled horseman, and had a natural affinity for animals. Riding gave him his independence, which he soon exploited to full advantage.Cairo, Egypt.Eager to see the world, Kavanagh travelled from a young age, accompanying his family on trips to Egypt and the Middle East. According to the BBC, in 1849, he and his brother embarked on an epic journey, passing through Scandinavia, Russia, Central Asia, Iran, and Pakistan, before finally arriving in India. This overland trip was exceptionally arduous, even for able-bodied travellers, but Kavanagh relished his time on the open road.According to the Times, however, Kavanagh hit a hurdle in India. Having learned that her son had spent time frequenting a brothel, Kavanagh’s mother withdrew her letter of credit, leaving him without access to funds. In order to pay his way, Kavanagh got a job with the East India Company as a dispatch rider, putting his skills in horsemanship to good use.Jaipur, Rajasthan, India.In 1851 Kavanagh was recalled to Ireland. His older brother had died, leaving him as sole heir to the family estate in Borris, County Carlow. Like all his other activities, Kavanagh threw himself into his new life as a landlord with gusto. Drawing on the techniques and strategies he had learned in India, he set about transforming the economic fortunes of the estate.Inspired by what he had learned on his travels he invested in a sawmill and the Irish railways, boosting the local economy and ensuring that his tenant farmers had the means to earn a living and feed their families. The Great Famine of the 1840s had decimated the Irish farming community, and Kavanagh was adamant that his own tenants should not go hungry.The Great Famine in Skibbereen, West Cork. From a series of illustrations by Cork artist James Mahony (1810-1879), commissioned by Illustrated London News, 1847.Kavanagh had a deeply paternalistic approach to Irish politics. He believed that the landholding class were divinely sanctioned leaders of society, but that this meant that they had certain responsibilities to their tenant farmers.He deplored the lack of respect demonstrated by many Irish landlords towards their tenants, and was devastated by the senseless loss of life that had occurred during the Famine.Kavanagh’s deep convictions saw him become increasingly involved in politics. He served as a Member of Parliament between 1866 and 1880, where he was closely involved with efforts to reform the Irish system of land tenure. When he died of pneumonia in 1889, he was widely loved and respected, both at home and in London.Read another story from us: The Woman who got the World’s Most Reclusive Tribe to Put their Arrows DownKavanagh was a staunch Unionist and landlord who defended the rights of tenant farmers, a committed Christian who deplored the divisions between Catholics and Protestants, and a legendary lothario who settled into a happy and loving marriage. He never conformed to stereotypes, and certainly never allowed his disability to place limits on what he could achieve.last_img read more

Colins Blazin 5 Prediction Podcast NFL Week 2

first_imgIt’s time for the Blazin’ 5 Prediction Podcast for NFL Week 2! Colin sits down with  RJ Bell from Pregame.com for the second in his web exclusive podcast series to see how his Week 2 NFL picks stack up against the wiseguys.Last week, Seattle was the sharps’ biggest disagreement, and it came back to bite Colin in a big way. He was 2-3 in Week 1, but it’s not how you start, it’s how you finish.Colin is feeling great about his Blazin’ 5 picks this week:Kansas City (+2.5) vs. Houston Titans (+5.5) vs. DetroitAtlanta (+4.5) vs. OaklandIndy vs. Denver (-6)Dallas vs. Washington (-2.5)See where the wiseguys agree and disagree with Colin and whether Vegas thinks he’ll be making deposits or withdrawals on Monday.The Blazin’ 5 Prediction Podcast is available every Saturday through the end of the football season.  Download and subscribe to it exclusively at TheHerdNow.com, iHeart Radio, Google Play, or iTunes. Don’t miss it.last_img read more

12 Sly Web Tricks That Put You in Control

first_imgAugust 26, 2008 Crack a Windows PasswordThe problem: You lost your Windows password (or you want to discover someone else’s). Now you have no way to fully access your account without getting it back.The trick: Download Ophcrack Live CD and burn it to a disc; then restart your computer and boot from the CD. Point Ophcrack at the hard drive where Windows is installed, and it’ll start cracking your Windows password.The effect: The shorter and simpler the Windows password, the more quickly and easily Ophcrack will break it. But Ophcrack can only crack alphanumeric passwords. If the password contains other characters or symbols (like “@”), Ophcrack won’t do the job.Read Books on the D.L. at WorkThe problem: Whether or not you’ve got any work to do, most employers frown on cracking a book at your desk.The trick: Web site Read at Work is a full-screen Flash application that mimics a Windows desktop and serves up public-domain works in a format that resembles PowerPoint presentations. Classics by Twain, Fitzgerald, Dickinson, and Tolstoy are all yours to read on company time. (Well, if it’s Tolstoy, you might rather just work).The effectiveness: To the casual onlooker, Read at Work convincingly looks like a standard Windows XP window. Whether or not your boss will believe that the Oscar Wilde you’re reading is actually a PowerPoint presentation depends on your boss. And it helps if reading PowerPoint presentations is actually part of your job.Say It With Self-Destructing E-MailThe problem: E-mail is forever. If you fire off an angry or ill-thought-out message, the recipient could hold onto it–and hold it against you–indefinitely.The trick: Send a self-destructing e-mail message by going to the Web site DestructingMessage. Just specify how much time you want to give the recipient before the message implodes (15 seconds to 5 minutes), write your message, and send it.The effect: DestructingMessage can send the e-mail anonymously, or you can send a link to the message yourself. Either way, the recipient has a limited time to read it before it’s gone for good. If the recipient is quick on her feet, though, she could grab a screen shot before it’s gone forever.Go Straight to VoicemailThe problem: Everybody’s been there. You’d rather leave a voicemail than deal with a drawn-out phone conversation. Or you’re a coward with bad news to deliver.The trick: SlyDial connects you directly with your contacts’ voicemail–whether they’ve got their phone turned on or not. Just dial 267-SLYDIAL, enter the number you want to leave a voicemail with, and then, when prompted, just leave your message.The effect: SlyDial works exactly as advertised. Use SlyDial gratis as much as you want, but if you tire of the in-call advertising, premium plans get you to voicemail faster and ad-free. SlyDial voicemails, however, do not self-destruct–I guess they haven’t thought of that yet.Spoof Your E-Mail AddressThe problem: You want to send e-mail from a bogus account.The trick: Forge an e-mail address with your desktop e-mail client. In Thunderbird, all you need is a working SMTP server and a fake account. As long as the SMTP server can send e-mail without requiring authentification, you can use your fake e-mail address as much as you want.The effect: To most people, your spoofed e-mail will appear indistinguishable from a real one. The catch: You won’t get any replies, and a look at the message’s headers can reveal to the recipient that you’re using an unusual SMTP server for that e-mail address.Browse the Net Without Leaving a TraceThe problem: Web sites you visit are tracked by your Web browser in several ways that aren’t immediately obvious–such as browser history, cookies, or cached files. Whether you’re doing some online shopping on a shared computer or visiting Web sites that are, let’s say, embarrassing, it’s hard to make sure that a browsing session doesn’t leave a trace.The trick: Go off the record when you want browsing privacy with the Stealther Firefox extension. Enabled, Stealther makes sure that your browsing history, downloads, disk cache, saved form information, and cookies aren’t saved to your browser.The effect: Stealther works in every respect. Whenever you want to go off the record with your browsing, just go to Tools, Stealther. When you’re ready to go back on the record (after all, browser history and cookies can be very useful), just turn off Stealther. Muahahahahaha!!! Crack a Windows Password 10 min read Brought to you by PCWorld Register Now » Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. So it’s Friday afternoon, the weekend is just around the corner, and you’re up to no good. Rather than waste your time turning monitors upside down around the office, why not update your tech arsenal? If you have a computer or cell phone on hand, you’re more than ready to beef up your weapons and spy kit with these 12 sly tricks. We’ll teach you why and how (and with what) to do them, and tell you how well you can expect them to work. And you will forget where you heard this information…Turn Wi-Fi Thieves’ Worlds Upside DownThe problem: You took the time and expense to set up a wireless Internet connection at your place. But you’re pretty sure that the cheap bastard next door is stealing it–that is, connecting to the Internet on your dime. Sure, you could take the easy step of password-protecting your network, but what fun is settling for a little common-sense measure like that?The trick: With the help of a lovely little service called Upside-Down-Ternet, you can turn that Wi-Fi thief’s free Internet scheme upside down–literally. With a little clever scripting, every image the thief views via your connection is flipped upside down on his monitor and mirrored, making Web browsing difficult to say the least. You can also redirect every Web request the thief makes to a particular site–the author of the hack suggests Kittenwar. Pretty good, but I would go with an old standby.The effect: The trick takes a little work to set up right, but if you can pull it off, it works perfectly. And doing right by one’s neighbor just makes you feel good inside.Never Be ‘Away’ With Your AIM BotThe problem: Some employers use IM clients to track their workers and ensure they’re keeping their noses to the grindstone–but, hey, you don’t like Big Brother staring over your shoulder.The trick: Create your own AIM bot with the Web site RunABot. An AIM bot is an automated chat robot that resembles any other AIM user, and–if you set it up well–it responds to messages like a real person. Once you register with RunABot, the site walks you through setting up your bare-bones bot; then it’s up to you to make your bot believable.The effect: In the time it takes to customize your bot to fool your boss in all situations, you could probably finish several work projects and earn a few promotions. With just a few minutes of setup time, however, the “hardworker” bot I put together can convincingly participate in simple workplace conversations.Make a Laptop Thief Regret ItThe problem: Every time you leave your table at the bookstore for another cup of coffee, you’ve got to choose what to do with your laptop. You’ll only be gone for a few seconds, so lugging it with you is a pain. Still, the guy with a double espresso has been eyeing your gear since you sat down, and he looks like he could have sticky fingers.The trick: Install an antitheft program on your laptop that monitors unusual behavior when you’re away, setting off an alarm whenever it detects a possible theft. The freeware Windows application Laptop Alarm sounds an alarm whenever your laptop’s power cable is unplugged, the mouse is moved, or the laptop is shut down. Mac users should check out iAlertU , a freeware app that uses your MacBook’s built-in accelerometer to set off the alarm and snag a Webcam picture whenever someone so much as moves your laptop. You can smoothly disable the alarm with your Apple remote like a proper car alarm.The effect: Under the right circumstances, these applications can be enough to deter a thief from running off with your laptop. Neither application is foolproof, however: Don’t consider these apps as anything more than deterrents.Spoof Your Caller ID The problem: Before caller ID became standard on every phone, making an anonymous call meant little more than dialing the number. Today it’s easy to screen calls and send unknown numbers to voicemail. If you’re looking to make an old-fashioned prank call (heavy breathing optional) or simply surprise the person you’re calling, the ubiquity of caller ID has ruined the fun.The trick: Several caller ID spoofing services are available online that not only hide your number from the recipient’s caller ID, they also make the call appear to be coming from another phone number altogether. Even better, you decide what number you want to show up when you call. I tested this trick at SpoofCard, one of many such services. Just give SpoofCard your number, the number you want to call, and the number you want to show up in the caller ID; SpoofCard takes care of rest.The effect: SpoofCard was very easy to use, and it did exactly what it advertised. In my test, that meant spoofing with Tommy Tu-Tone’s 867-5309 without a hitch. SpoofCard offers free trial calls, which is probably enough for most users.Did They Read Your E-Mail? When?The problem: You send out an important e-mail message reminding your coworker to bring copies of your PowerPoint presentation to the big meeting. You get there, and he doesn’t have them. His excuse: He never got your e-mail. Possible, but questionable; anyway, you want to know for sure.The trick: Send messages you want to monitor through DidTheyReadIt. The Web site embeds a tiny image in each e-mail it sends. When the e-mail is opened, the recipient’s e-mail client, in many cases, will automatically send a request for the embedded image; when that request is made, DidTheyRead then knows that the e-mail was indeed opened, when it was opened, and for how long it was open.The effect: If you really need to be sure that someone received a particular message, DidTheyReadIt works as advertised. The only catch: If the recipient’s e-mail client doesn’t automatically download embedded images, DidTheyReadIt’s tracking mechanism may not work.Create a Web-Streaming SpycamThe problem: You want to keep a closer eye on your kids when you’re away without having to buy a nanny cam.The trick: The free application WebcamXP streams video from your Webcam over the Internet so you can keep an eye on your home from anywhere. If you have a Webcam with a tracking motor, WebcamXP can even control the pan and tilt of the camera over the Internet, giving you full control over what you’re seeing.The effect: The application works very well, though the free version supports just one video source. Upgrading to one of the shareware versions gives you motion detection, and the ability to hook up and view feeds from multiple Webcams. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Globallast_img read more

Five Useful Free Tools for Small Businesses

first_img 7 min read Brought to you by PCWorld November 19, 2010 Free Workshop | August 28: Get Better Engagement and Build Trust With Customers Now These are frugal times for business, and an organization starting out might have very little money to spend on IT. Even if you’re part of an established business, you’re probably feeling the pinch.Here are five extremely useful computing resources that are free of charge for small business users — unlike some “free” services you might see that are only for home users. These choices have few if any restrictions, and are established services unlikely to shut up shop anytime soon.1. Google Apps for BusinessIf your organization has under 50 employees, then Google Apps for Business (formerly called Google Apps for Domains) is for you. It offers free e-mail under the umbrella of your own organization’s domain name (You can pay Google $10 to reserve a domain name, if you don’t already have one). You can also have your own private Google Docs system along with your own Google Calendar system.In use, the e-mail system looks and feels just like regular Gmail, except that your own organization’s e-mail addresses are used rather than a Gmail one (such as,bob.smith@yourdomain.com, rather than something like bob.smith1964@gmail.com). One nice touch is that the e-mail address book is shared automatically amongst your users.It’s all hosted on Google’s computers, so you won’t need your own mail server computer. You’ll benefit from almost zero configuration and maintenance, plus a promised 99.9 percent uptime guarantee. Put simply, Google takes care of everything for you. The spam filtering is the same excellent system as Gmail, which is to say your employees just won’t be bothered by anything dodgy.There are some limitations on the free version. As well as the 50 user limit, each user account can send e-mails to only 500 recipients per day. This won’t be an issue for most of us, but it’s easy to imagine an enthusiastic sales person hitting that ceiling now and again. You also can’t send attachments larger than 25MB, although this will only be an issue for those working in the media industries who have to ship around large photographs or video files.Even if you have to pay to upgrade to the Premier Edition, which allows unlimited users and a host of other benefits, it’ll only cost $50 per year. Who can argue with that kind of value?Some service providers, such as Dreamhost, offer free-of-charge one-click configuration of Google Apps for any domains you have registered with them.2. DropboxDropbox is a sync and backup tool that makes use of the cloud to remotely store files. Once the Dropbox software is installed, you’ll find a new Dropbox folder on your hard disk. Anything stored in this folder is instantly transferred to Dropbox’s cloud storage system. This is done invisibly, and using the Dropbox folder is just like using any other folder on your hard disk.The benefits are that you can then install Dropbox on another computer and, using the same login details, recreate your Dropbox folder. Anything saved in the folder on computer A will automatically appear in computer B’s Dropbox folder, and vice versa. Indeed, you can add-in computers C, D, E, and so on, and even mobile devices can get in on the action. There’s a Web interface that allows access to files, too.Perhaps the chief benefit for business is that, should a notebook get stolen or lost, restoring its files is as simple as installing Dropbox on a new computer, entering the username, and letting it sync the contents (provided your employees have been trained to always save their files in the Dropbox folder, of course).Dropbox offers free 2GB of storage per user, which is enough for hundreds of modest office documents, and I couldn’t find any restrictions on business users signing-up for free accounts. All you need is to download the client software and sign up during the installation process, using your e-mail address.Before you ask, yes, it’s massively secure. SSL connections are used to make the transfer of data to and from the cloud, and all data is stored using AES-256 encryption. Even if a stranger were to somehow pull your data from the cloud, it would be gibberish.Each user can make the leap to 50GB of storage for $10 per month, or 100GB for $20. This isn’t a huge amount of money, although it could add up once your organization starts to grow.My colleague Rick Broida discussed a similar new service called SugarSync, which offers 5GB of free storage — 3GB more than Dropbox. However, my personal preference is to stick with the long-established Dropbox.3. Microsoft Security EssentialsLicense fees for antivirus software are taxing for those who use Windows. We’d rather not pay, but there’s no way of getting around it. Most free antivirus products, such as AVG, are free only for home users.However, Microsoft has recently opened-up its Security Essentials software for free small business usage. (It was previously free only for home users.)  Alas, the license agreement states you can only use it on up to 10 computers in a corporate environment, but this is still better than nothing. If nothing else, it means that you’ll have 10 fewer antivirus licenses to pay for. (For larger organizations, Microsoft offers its Forefront product range, which has various licensing systems.)The new Security Essentials looks good. It’s certainly good at spotting viruses, although it can be a little slow when scanning compared to competitors. However, considering the $0 price tag, I’m sure we can all live with this. Security Essentials is available for all recent versions of Windows, from XP up.4. LinuxDon’t worry. I’m not going to advise you switch to Linux on your desktop computers. From a purely financial standpoint this has rarely made much sense for smaller businesses, considering they usually pay for Windows licenses without any choice when they buy a new PC.Instead, I’m going to recommend Linux for your file servers. This avoids the need to pay for expensive Windows Server licenses. If you go with something like Ubuntu, the most popular form of Linux, you’ll pay nothing at all for an installation serving an unlimited number of client computers.Ubuntu’s other chief advantage is that, as a popular form of Linux, support is never far away. Googling any problem will almost certainly reveal somebody else who’s had the issue, or you can head over the hugely popular Ubuntu Forums to ask for help.In terms of technology, Ubuntu offers Samba, which can effectively recreate a modest Windows-like file and printer sharing setup. Both Macs and Windows computers will have no problems connecting, and will be unaware that they’re not connecting to a Windows server.If you have an old PC you can mess around on, try downloading Ubuntu Server and giving it a try. You might have to reach back into your memory to remember those Unix 101 classes, but there’s a wealth of free documentation out there to help you get started.5. Go-OO Office SuiteUnless you’ve been living under a rock for the past few years, you probably already know about OpenOffice.org, the open source (and therefore free-of-charge) office suite. This keeps getting better with each release and is now a definite contender for lighter-weight office tasks. If you haven’t looked at it recently, it’s well worth a trial.I find it very useful for those upgrading from an older version of Office and who are confused by the ribbon-based user interface, found on recent releases of Microsoft Office.However, it’s been a busy time in the world of OpenOffice.org, and Oracle’s acquisition of Sun — owners of OpenOffice.org — has dropped a bomb from which the dust is still settling. The LibreOffice project has picked-up the reins but is still in beta testing stage, so at the moment I recommend the existing version of Go-OO as the best free-of-charge office suite around. Based on OpenOffice.org with some useful tweaks here and there, its chief advantage is support for Microsoft’s newer XML-based file format (such as the DOCX, XLSX, and PPTX file extensions), which is the default in all recent releases of Microsoft Office. Enroll Now for Free This hands-on workshop will give you the tools to authentically connect with an increasingly skeptical online audience.last_img read more

Google Issues Some Pretty Darn Hilarious Glass Dos and Donts

first_img 4 min read Even Google says you shouldn’t be a glasshole. Just because you wear an insanely amazing $1,500 computer on your face doesn’t give you license to be “creepy or rude.” The tech behemoth, which apparently has a witty, sensitive side, also advises against donning Google Glass while riding a bull or cage fighting. Gee, we can’t imagine why not.Yes, Google wants users to go boldly, but ever so carefully and considerately into the pioneering world of Glass. And in case you brave Explorers can’t make heads or tails of what’s kosher and what’s not while rocking Glass, Google also wants to give you a hand. The company today issued a helpful Google Glass do’s and don’t guide and it’s equal parts practical and entertaining. Related: Virgin Atlantic Is Using Google Glass to Greet Customers “Since the [Google Glass Explorer] program got started, our Explorers have gotten a lot of attention when they wear Glass out and about,” the guide reads. “Reactions range from the curious — ‘Wow!” Are those the ‘Google glasses? How do they work?’ — to the suspect — ‘Goodness gracious do those things see into my soul?!’”Who knows? They just might peer deep into your soul. But maybe not if the person peering from behind them follows Google’s official Glass-iquette pointers. Here are some of our favorites from the cheeky do’s and don’ts list:   Don’t “glass-out.” Yeah, don’t be that guy who wears glass like a second skin and zones out basically 24/7. Like Google says, “If you find yourself staring off into the prism for long periods of time you’re probably looking pretty weird to the people around you.” Oh, and don’t tuck into a tome like War and Peace from behind Glass. True, “things like that are better done on bigger screens.”Related: The NYPD Is Testing Google Glass for Patrol Purposes Don’t “be creepy or rude (aka, a ‘Glasshole’).” You know, creeping sketchily around places with Glass, like the movies, banks, casinos, and, yup, even (cringe) locker rooms and dressing rooms. Google sums it up perfectly: “In places where cell phone cameras aren’t allowed, the same rules will apply to Glass.” Capiche? Okay, good. Don’t “rock glass while doing high-impact sports.” See? We weren’t kidding at the beginning of this article. Google really thinks that “water skiing, bull riding or cage fighting with Glass are probably not good ideas.” We’re pretty sure Glass is also a no-go for volcano surfing, too. Yes, that’s a thing now.Do “take advantage of the Glass voice commands.” In other words, don’t be afraid to boss your Glass around, like you would Siri. Start by saying the magic words “ok glass,” then literally tell that pair what to do, like so: “Take a picture.” “Record a video.” “Get directions to.” “Send message to.” and “Make a call to.” Last we checked, “Make a pastrami sandwich.” isn’t a real Google Glass command… yet.Google points out that nifty voice commands “free your hands up to do other things like golfing, cooking, or juggling flaming torches while balancing on a beach ball.” But wait, didn’t they warn that Glass and extreme sports don’t mix?Do “ask for permission.” Would you snap a person’s picture with your smartphone or DSLR without asking them for permission? No? Then it’s probably poor form to stare someone down with your Glass and take pics and video of them without getting their buy-in first.We’re not sure how many people will actually follow this somewhat unrealistic tip, which feels a bit like an awkward acknowledgement from Google regarding the shame spiral of privacy pitfalls haunting Glass. After all, it’s impossible to know what Glass wearers are really up to from behind their snazzy tech specs (that is, unless you’re the NSA).Remember, eyeborgs, like the friendly — and surprisingly pretty funny — folks at Google caution, “Standing alone in the corner of a room staring at people while recording them through Glass is not going to win you any friends.” Neither is wearing them in the shower and snapping a selfie https://plus.google.com/+Scobleizer/posts/TcaqNeYJWXo. Register Now » February 18, 2014center_img Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Globallast_img read more

Boost SEO by Showcasing How Smart You Are

first_img Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. The secret to online visibility can be found in search. But how can businesses maximize search engine optimization for their company websites? The solution is both simple and complex. You need content, but content that’s clever, creative and engaging.”It’s all about creating fresh, relevant content,” says Eric Siu of digital marketing agency Single Grain. “Everyone preaches it,” he says, “but not everyone is able to actually deliver on that.”We reached out to a team of SEO experts to break down how smarter content can showcase your company’s assets, boost your content quality and eventually pull your site to the top of users’ search results. Here’s what they suggest.Related: 4 Ways to Get Influencers to Spread Your Brand’s MessageDon’t try trickery. Tactics for optimizing SEO have changed drastically and quickly. “SEO in 2014 is largely defined by quality content publication,” says Jayson DeMers, founder and CEO of AudienceBloom, “whereas a few years ago, it was defined by manipulative tactics,” such as mass link sharing through online forums or even purchasing links from SEO agencies, which would trick Google’s algorithm into ranking your site higher. Now, these methods are entirely ineffective. Content strategy has almost completely displaced the “spammy” strategies of just a few years go. “Those tactics are easily detected by Google’s ranking algorithm and will backfire on companies that attempt to use them,” DeMers says, resulting in penalties that will keep you out of the Google rankings for months or yearsQuality is key. For Google and other search engines, it’s all about pointing searches toward the best results. “Publishing low-quality content on a company blog will…not only hurt SEO efforts, but will degrade your brand,” DeMers says. Ask yourself: Would you read this article? Would you share it? If the answer to either of those questions is ‘No,’ you need to go back to the content drawing board. Look to blogs you admire and think about ideas you can borrow and build upon for your own site.  Related: Marketing Trends Experts Want You to AvoidBe consistent. Everything you post on your site should align with your brand. If it’s helpful, jot down 2- 3 key words you want people to use when describing your company (words like, “positive” or “expert”) and ask how many of those key words could describe any of the posts you make online. And make sure to update your online efforts at regular (even predictable) intervals to build an audience. Give people something to look forward to. “If you create quality and you continue to do it over time, you’re going to see these results compound,” says Siu.Spice things up. Siu emphasizes that variety will help your site rise to the top of the search rankings. Consider a range of content options, such as blogs, short videos you tape on your phone or laptop, photos and Webinars that will drive word of mouth about your business. “People are taking more risks,” he says, adding that some businesses are even creating eBooks for their readers. If you create a unique and valuable experience that actually rewards visitors to your site, Siu promises that “Google will reward you for that.”Related: 6 Ways to Retain Ecommerce CustomersBe the expert. Presenting yourself as an industry leader in your site’s original content will drive SEO and improve your personal brand. “You need to be constantly reaffirming your space in the industry,” says Brian Honigman, a marketing consultant. Acting like the expert you are in your presentation will continue to pay off in the years ahead. “If you clearly package your expertise on a subject, then over time, you’ll be able to keep up with the search engine’s constant changes.”Be a friend. Traditional link building may be dead, but the side effect of sharing links, the bonds between sites, is strong than ever. In other words, real relationships matter. “Through these organic relationships, you can build links to your site and help your SEO while achieving other goals,” Honigman says. Re-post customer’s photos (with their permission), link out to experts you admire and forge new bonds. “You’re going to get a better bang for your buck if you combine your efforts,” adds Siu. Meanwhile, you’ve cultivated a network of ambassadors who have a reason to drive back to your online content.Be patient. Siu explains that SEO success doesn’t happen overnight. Create a content schedule you can manage and monitor its results over several weeks, tweaking these articles once you feel you understand what your audience wants. Change won’t come immediately and Siu emphasizes patience, especially for young companies. The days of buying your way to the top of the search results are long over. “You won’t see results very quickly,” he says. “It does take time when it comes to SEO.” Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. 5 min read September 18, 2014 Register Now »last_img read more