Happy New Year 2015


Friday, June 27, 2008

Health News-4: '$168 million spent on Lobbying! '

The report from Newsdesk.org makes one feel uneasy. In the year 2007, a frightening sum of $168 million was spent by pharmaceutical companies for lobbying to prevent legislation placing new restrictions on drug advertisements.

Courtesy: Newsdesk.org. <
For more info:

For an article on “Lobbying” from Wikipedia:

Article on the workings of pharmaceutical industries from Wikipedia:

Book Review Article, “Drugs: Is Something Rotten?” from Newsweek, April 19, 2004 (“Books”) – Review of the book,
“THE $800 MILLION PILL : The Truth Behind the Cost of New Drugs” By Merrill Goozner, University of California -- 297 pp -- $24.95

Article, “ The Pharmaceutical Industry and its influence on doctors and medical students” from The Lancet Student:

Grateful thanks to Newsdesk.org, Wikipedia, Business Week and The Lancet Student.

Environment-4: "The Climate Change"

Climate Change is currently one of the most pressing environmental issues facing the international community, the business world and individual citizens. Responding to this challenge requires efforts on many fronts.

There is a broad scientific consensus on the gravity of climate change caused by global warming. the majority of the world’s research community predicts that the global mean temperature will rise by 1.4 to 5.8 degrees Celsius over the next 100 years. Even the lower figure will have dramatic effects. melting glaciers, increased precipitation, more frequent and stronger hurricanes, rising sea levels and desertification. Severe disruptions to land usage and food and water supplies, the spread of diseases and migration of people and animals will inevitably follow.

Researchers agree that human activities are the main cause of global warming, as we annually release billions of tones of carbon dioxide (CO2) and other greenhouse gases through burning huge volumes of oil, natural gas and coal and venting industrial gases. In order to stabilise the concentration of CO2) in the atmosphere and prevent accelerated temperature increase, global CO2 emissions need to be cut by 70-80%.

Our activities not only have an impact on environmental and social aspects. Economic growth will also be damaged if the climate challenge is ignored. The latest research conclude that ‘Climate change presents a unique challenge for economics; it is the greatest and widest-ranging market failure ever seen’. Reducing emissions can be seen as an investment and must be viewed with economies of risk in mind. Acting now instead of waiting for the problem to escalate will, in the long run, reduce the total costs and provides a number of opportunities for innovation, growth and development as we move towards for carbon-constrained future.

Responding to the challenge requires efforts on many fronts. Based on its independent status, technology competence, risk management expertise and industry knowledge, DNV provides climate change services within three main areas: clean energy, emission reductions and adaptation.

The urgent need for a clean, low CO2 energy future creates a unique challenge for everybody. However, most clean energy solutions suffer from a lack of maturity in terms of technology, economy, infrastructure and common acceptance criteria.

Switching to clean energy sources will not happen overnight. The energy supply will depend heavily on oil, gas and coal for many years to come. Emission reduction activities will therefore be important to mitigate climate change.

This includes oil and gas production with minimum emissions. It also includes efforts to make electricity production from gas and coal cleaner through energy efficiently measures, new power plant technology and carbon capture and storage.

Due to past emissions, certain impacts of climate change are unavoidable, calling for adaptation measures in addition to emission reductions.

Excerpt from DNV Annual Report 2007, Det Norske Veritas, Sweden
Grateful thanks to Det Norkse Veritas, Sweden.

S&T Watch 13: "Fossil skull from eons ago discovered"

Scientists have unearthed a skull of the most primitive four-legged creature in the earth’s history, which should help them better understand the evolution of fish to advanced animals that walk on land.

The 365-million-year-old fossil skull, shoulders and part of the pelvis of the water-dweller, Ventastega curonica, were found in Latvia, researchers report in a study being published in Thursday’s issue of Nature.

Even though Ventastega is likely an evolutionary deadend, the finding sheds details on the evolutionary transition from fish to tetrapods. Tetrapods are animals with four limbs and include such descendents as amphibians, birds and mammals.

The team did not find the legs or toes of Ventastega, but was able to deduce that it was four-limbed because parts of its pelvis and the shoulders were found. From their shapes, scientists were able to conclude that limbs, not fins, were attached to Ventastega. – AP

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 26, 2008

For Info on ‘Ventastega’ from Wikipedia:

Article from ScienceNews: “Fossil helps document shift from sea to land”

Article from BBC News: “Fossil fills out water-land leap”

Grateful thanks to AP, The Hindu, Wikipedia, ScienceNews and BBC News.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Eyecatchers-82: “Jargon-busters at work”

British bureaucrats have been warned: no more synergies, stakeholders or sustainable communities.

The body that represents the UK’s local authorities has told its members to stop using management buzzwords, saying they confuse people and prevent residents from understanding what local governments actually do.

The Local Government Association, whose members include hundreds of district, town and county councils in England and Wales, on Friday (June 20, 2008) sent out a list of 100 “non-words” that it said officials should avoid if they want to be understood.

The list includes the popular but vague term “empowerment”, “coterminosity,” a situation in which two organizations oversee the same geographical area; and “synergies,” combinations in which the whole is greater than the sum of its part.

Officials were told to ditch the term “revenue stream” for income, as well as the imprecise “sustainable communities”.

The association also wanted councils to stop referring to local residents as “customers” or “stakeholders”.

The association’s chair, Simon Milton, said officials should not “hide behind impenetrable jargon and phrases.” He asked: “Why do we have to have ‘coterminous, stakeholder engagement’ when we could just ‘talk to people’ instead?” – AP

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 22, 2008
Grateful thanks to AP and The Hindu.

Net Watch-1: 'New e-mail addresses from Yahoo"

Yahoo on Thursday (June 19, 2008) tripled the size of its globally-popular free online e-mail service by adding two domains as options to “yahoo.com” addresses.

The introduction of “ymail.com” and “rocketmail.com” as Yahoo e-mail address options comes as the Internet firm strives to convince investors it is on a path to reclaim faded glory and eroded revenues.

Yahoo Mail is the most popular web-based e-mail in the world. Its profitable, advertisement-supported service has approximately 266 million users, according to industry statistics.

Adding new domains is intended to let users who have outgrown or never really liked their yahoo.com e-mail addresses to have chances at better choices.

“We recognize that people want an e-mail address that reflects who they are,” said Yahoo Mail vice president, John Kremer. “We have a lot of user Ids out there and it is pretty crowded. We want to remedy that and make sure users get the ID they want.”

Free e-mail addresses are typically assigned on a first-come, first-served basis. This means newcomers choosing yahoo.com Ids are unlikely to get their prime choices when signing up.

A Harris Interactive study commissioned by Yahoo concluded that 70% of adults w0ould select an address that includes all or part of their names.

Yahoo says the rocketmail and ymail choices are meant to give another chance to email users saddled with addresses such “CutiePie4ever80” or “Mary2455”.

“A happy user is one that stays around and is a Yahoo user for life.” Mr.Kremer said, “If you have an e-mail address that is your name at ymail, that becomes part of your identity.”

Yahoo expects users to readily recognize “ymail” because it is used for a version of the e-mail customized for mobile devices.

Rocketmail has a “hip retro feel” because it is a resurrect3ed e-mail address that belonged to a company Yahoo bought in 1997, according to Mr.Kremer. “This adds millions and millions of new Yahoo accounts out there for users. Effectively, we are tripling the size of the Yahoo name space.” – AFP

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 20, 2008.
Grateful thanks to AFP and The Hindu.

Letters-26: "al-Qaeda"

The al-Qaeda came into existence as a result of the U.S.foreign policy in West Asia, aimed at protecting its interests in the oil-rich region. 9/11 gave the U.S. an opportunity to wage the so-called war on terror in Afghanistan where it succeeded in inflicting heavy losses on the al-Qaeda. But the occupation of Iraq has given a new lease of life to the outfit. As Daniel Benjamin, who served on Bill Clinton’s National Security Council, said: “There were no jihadists in Iraq before we invaded” but “there are now thousands, Iraqi and foreign, and they are going to be an enduring problem because many have embraced the global jihadist agenda.” - Mahmood Alam Siddiqui, New Delhi

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 20, 2008
Grateful thanks to Mr Mahmood Alam Siddiqui and The Hindu.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

My Photo Album-40: "Ammu and Aravind in their new school uniform"

Ammu and Aravind have moved to a new school. In the picture, they are in their new school uniform.
Grateful thanks to Vinod for the above photo.

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Letters-26: “Child Labour”

The photograph of a boy repairing a scooter on the World Day against Child Labour and the accompanying caption “In shackles” (The Hindu, Madurai, June 13) speak volumes about the state of affairs across the country. Child labour is a common sight in automobile workshops and construction sites, besides individual homes. A lot has been talked about eradicating the social evil but very little has been done. The plight of children is worse in rural areas. Equally important is the issue of employing senior citizens, particularly those above 70, for strenuous physical work. – H.K.Lakshman Rao, Chennai.

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 16, 2008 (Letters to the

For a detailed article on 'Child Labour' from Wikipedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Child_labour

Grateful thanks to Mr.H.K.Lakshman Rao; The Hindu and Wikipedia.

S&T Watch-12: "Chandrayaan-I launch likely on Sep.19"

India’s maiden moon mission Chandrayaan-I has reached a major milestone with scientists completing the integration of all instruments onto the spacecraft. The aim is to launch it by September 19.

Scientists at the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) last week completed the integration of 11 instruments – six indigenous and 5 under international cooperation – onto the spacecraft – onto the spacecraft, which is no bigger than a typical office cubicle.

“We are carrying out detailed integrated tests to ensure that all systems match our expectations and to record the spacecraft level data for future references,” Mylswamy Annadurai, Project Director of Chandrayaan-I, told PTI.

“The tests are expected to last another four weeks after which the spacecraft’s ability to handle the extreme thermal and vacuum environment of lunar orbit will be gauged. These assessments will be followed by vibration and acoustic tests. The spacecraft needs to be shifted to the launch-pad at least four weeks prior to the launch date to allow scientists and engineers to carry out necessary checks on the launch vehicle,” he said.

Chandrayaan-I will be launched atop a Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV), India’s workhorse rocket with a streak of nine consecutive flawless missions.

ISRO has packed the spacecraft with six instruments, including a high-resolution stereo camera capable of imaging objects about 16 feet in diameter.

It will carry near-infrared and X-ray spectrometers to determine the altitude of the lunar craft for spatial coverage of various instruments. These payloads will help researchers ascertain the composition and topography of the lunar-surface.

Indian engineers have built a 64-pound impactor that will be dropped from the orbiting spacecraft for a suicidal nosedive into the moon.

The probe will relay video imagery, altitude information and spectral data back to the earth through the mother ship, which will be in a lunar orbit 100 km away.

Delivery of five international instruments began last August. NASA’s Moon Mineralogy Mapper was flown to India from the Jet Propulsion Laboratory in Pasadena, California.

Nicknamed M3, the 15-pound imaging spectrometer will map the moon’s natural resources through visible and near-infrared wavelengths at higher resolutions than any instrument before.

NASA officials hope the device will help create mineral maps to find science-rich landing sites for future missions, possibly even including human expeditions. The M3 will also look for direct evidence of pockets of ice hidden inside craters near the lunar poles.

Scientists believe there are frozen water deposits deep within the eternally dark craters due to high concentration of hydrogen found there on previous missions. – PTI

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 16, 2008.
Grateful thanks to PTI and The Hindu.

Eyecatchers-81: "Double Digit Inflation Hits India after 13-year-gap" by Ashok Dasgupta

The rate of inflation in India has galloped to a 13-year high to 11.05% for the week ended June 7, confounding the worst fears of the United Progressive Alliance Government as general elections loom. This has been caused mainly by the June 5 increases in fuel prices and its cascading effect on all food commodities and other manufactured items, such as consumer durable goods and steel.

The unexpected spurt in the wholesale price index-based inflation from 8.75% in the previous week evoked sharp criticism from all political parties, including the UPA’s coalition partners and Left allies, of the government’s failure to hold the price line and sustain the benefits of high growth.

Reserve Bank of India data show that the last time inflation was in double digits was in April-May 1995 when it ruled above 11%.

Excerpt from The Hindu, Madurai, June 21, 2008.

Wikipedia article on "Chandrayaan": http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chandrayan

Grateful thanks to Mr.Ashok Dasgupta, The Hindu and Wikipeddia, the free encyclopedia.

Friday, June 20, 2008

Letters-25: "Road Accidents caused by Juveniles"

The number of road accidents caused by under-aged and unlicensed youngsters behind the wheel is on the rise. Often, the victims are too poor to pursue medical treatment, much less, compensation. The juvenile culprits hail from wealthy families and employ the best legal brains to go scot-free.

Renuka Choudhary’s suggestion that parents of such children should be made accountable is worth consideration. Parents should allow their children to handle cars only after satisfying themselves that they are capable of controlling them. – C.N.N.Nair, Mumbai.

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 19, 2008 (Letters to the Editor)

Wikipedia article on ‘Road Traffic Safety’ with lot of details and statistics:
Grateful thanks to The Hindu and Wikipedia.

Eyecatchers-80: "Picasso Painting Breaks Auction Record"

Sydney: Sylvette, a Pablo Picasso painting, auctioned in Sydney was sold for a record-breaking A$ 6.9 million.

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 20, 2008 (Snapshots)

For a biography of Picasso from Wikipedia, click:

Picasso in Wikimedia Commons:

‘Sylvette’ in Wikipedia:

Grateful thanks to: The Hindu, Wikipedia and Wiki Commons

My Photo Album-39: "Achu on the Mobile!"

Achu loves mobiles. If he sees anybody talking on the mobile, especially his parents, he will try to snatch the instrument from them. Here Achu is talking to his uncle ('mama'). More than Achu's voice, you hear the voice of his admirers coaxing him to speak!

How to Let out Your Anger

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

"Oh, gosh, I absolutely despise that math teacher! Blah, blah, blah, 'Honey, pay attention, oh look, your test: let me rip it up in front of you and give you a zero!' Blah, blah, blah." Does this sound familiar? Whether it's your teacher or your boss, everyone gets mad at someone, and needs something to vent their aggravation out on.


  1. Draw a picture of them and make it as ugly, hideous, and grotesque as you can.
  2. Look at a mirror and pretend that they are standing right there, and you can't get in trouble for whatever you say.
  3. Write a letter to them and write the most inappropriate things possible that you really would say to them if you could (do not actually send!).
  4. Download a picture of them onto a picture editing program. See how they'd look with a mustache, beard, runny nose, etc.

  1. Apologize.

In General
  1. Take a run, go swimming, play a sport with a friend. Physical exertion is a great way to get rid of stress. Anything to get your mind off of the topic.
  2. Scream into a pillow. Pile all the pillows you can get, jump onto them, scream, and punch at the pillows. Pretend it's the person you're mad at.


  • If you find that you're using this article excessively, you might want to lower the hatred on people you meet.


  • Do not let any teacher, friend, or boss witness any of the things you wrote, drew, or spoke! YOU COULD GET FIRED, SUSPENDED, OR LOSE A FRIEND!
  • Do not actually send the angry letter.

Related wikiHows

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Let out Your Anger. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

How to Make Big Money Speaking

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Imagine if you could make good money talking about something that you love. Well, you can! Almost any subject can be a good foundation for building a speaking business. And, you can do it even if you have little or no experience or capital.


  1. Choose a subject to speak about. Whatever area of expertise you have, it’s likely that there are people who would like to hear you speak. If you’re a relationship expert, you’re sure to find women’s groups who want to hear about how to improve their marriages. If you’re a gourmet chef, you could find cooking classes who’d love to hear your secrets for making high-class meals in a hurry.
  2. Decide how long your seminars will be.Whatever the length of your presentation, you’ll want to divide it into three parts: A beginning, a middle, and an end. Your beginning will be your introduction – which is your opportunity to hook your listeners’ attention. Your middle will contain the substantial information that you’ll share. And finally, you’ll have an ending where you’ll sum up what you presented. If you do wish to market additional “back-end” products, this is the time to do so.
  3. Create your Marketing Plan. There are many different options as far as earning money as a speaker is concerned. You can directly market yourself to organizations that might hire you. For example, if you have a wealth of knowledge about fishing, there are many fishing clubs that might want you to speak at one of their events. In addition to recreational activities, virtually all business trade groups present speakers to their members. And, you could even approach companies that have employees that could benefit from your knowledge.
  4. Use a bureau. Additionally, there are speakers’ bureaus that work as an agency who can procure speaking engagements for you. While many of these bureaus specialize in celebrity speakers, there are others that book speakers for less prominent events where a speaker only needs to be well qualified to do the presentation. A search on a major Internet search engine with a key term like “speaker’s bureau” is a good place to start.
  5. Hold your own seminars where you will market the event directly to the public. While this can be done on a national basis, the easiest place to start is locally. You either rent use of a facility to hold the seminar or perhaps partner with an entity with a facility and then promote the event. You can use traditional advertising methods like newspapers and radio or if you have a target audience that is identifiable, you may want to use direct mail. Have you ever been to a seminar on something like wealth building that was promoted in the newspaper? These are always been packed with hundreds of people.


  • Make sure that, whatever subject you choose, you know enough to sustain an intelligent, useful presentation and to answer any questions your audience might have. You’ll also want to choose a subject you love – neither you nor your audience will enjoy your speech on photography if you hate snapping pictures.


  • If you haven't done much public speaking before then you should practice a lot in front of friends and relatives so you can feel confident that you'll be fine.
  • Make sure that you're ready with answers for the questions you'll likely get asked.

Related wikiHows

Sources and Citations

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Make Big Money Speaking. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Eyecatchers-79: 'Smallest Karaoke Machine'

A Japanese toy maker will launch a karaoke machine measuring 7 cm, letting pop star wannabes, particularly children, hone their skills.

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 19, 2008 (Newscape)
Grateful thanks to The Hindu.
For reading about 'Karaoke' from Wikipedia, click:

S&T Watch-11: 'New Firefox in download record'

San Francisco: Mozilla on Tuesday (June 17, 2008) released an improved version of its Firefox web browser that has gained popularity as a free alternative to Microsoft’s ubiquitous Internet Explorer.

Mozilla said Firefox 3 promises Internet surfing that is fast, secure and easy to customize because it is designed to adapt to people’s online activities.

The company claimed that the new Firefox version, available in 50 languages, is at least twice as fast as its predecessor and boasts “15,000 improvements” including malware protection.

“We are really proud of Firefox 3 and it just shows what a committed, energized global community can do when they work together,” Mozilla chief executive John Lilly said in a release.

Interest in the California-based organization’s new-generation browser was so intense before its release on Tuesday that traffic to the Mozilla website caused it to crash. Free downloads of Firefox 3 started at
http://getfirefox.com after the problem was fixed.

Firefox 3 is available free for computers using Windows, Linux, and Macintosh OSX operating systems – AFP.

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 19, 2008.
Grateful thanks to AFP and The Hindu.

For a detailed article on ‘Web Browsers’ from Wikipedia, click:

Letters-24: Use of Cell Phones'

1. This refers to the draft guidelines report issued by the Telecommunication Engineering Centre, which says the antennas of mobile networks and mobile phones could pose serious health hazards (June 17). A few studies have examined whether the prolonged use of mobile phones can cause brain tumours but there is no conclusive evidence to determine whether cell phones are safe or not.

While it is true that we are exposed to electromagnetic radiation even when we undergo X-Rays and CT scans, the exposure is infrequent and for a brief period. But we use our mobile phones frequently; hold them close to our ears and for long periods of time. (H.N.Ramakrishna, Bangalore)

2. If I can, I will make the world go back to the pre-mobile phone era. No doubt, the cell phone has many advantages – especially in conducting business and during times of crisis – but it has become almost a part of the body. It seldom gets detached from the ear, particularly of students. It consumes most of their precious study time at the cost of money and health. (V.Vijayendra Rao, Neyveli)

Courtesy: The Hindu, Madurai, June 18, 2008 (Letters to the Editor)
Grateful thanks to M/s.H.N.Ramakrishna, Bangalore; V.Vijayendra Rao, Neyveli; and The Hindu.

In this connection, it may be of interest to look up the following websites which furnish a lot of directly relevant information:

1. Wikipedia article, “Mobile phone radiation and health”:

2. Govt of India Warning about ill-effects of cell phone radiation from ExpressIndia.com:

3. Cell Phone Facts from the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), Govt of U.S.A.

4. How Cell Phone Radiation Works from ‘How Stuff Works’:

5. Information on Radio Frequency Specific Absorption Rate (SAR) values from Mobile Manufacturers Forum:
(Mobile phones emit low levels of radio waves (also known as radiofrequency or 'RF' energy) when being used. Governments around the world have adopted comprehensive international safety guidelines, developed by independent scientific organizations, governing the exposure to RF energy. Mobile phones are designed to operate within these stringent limits. In this site, the radiation level of various makes and models of mobile phones are furnished)
Grateful thanks to: (1) Wikipedia; (2) Express India; (3) FDA, USA; (4) How Stuff Works; and (5) Mobile Manufacturers Forum.

How to Plan for a Successful Future

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

"I really want to make it in life, but I don't know how!" Not knowing how to set yourself up for a successful future can be frustrating. Here are a few suggestions.


  1. Get into your bedroom and close the door. Make sure your siblings are watching TV in the living room or playing out side.
  2. Go through your life thoroughly. What is your gift? What do you want to be in the future? What is your passion? (i.e. something you would love to do even if you were not paid to do it.)
  3. Write it down. Most of the people who have achieved their dreams took the first step towards achieving them: they wrote them down.
  4. Plan a route to get there. Write down what ever it will take you to reach your dream.
  5. Put your piece of paper where you can see it and remind yourself of your goals.
  6. Work your plan. Put it into action by following the route to your dream. It may mean adjusting a lot of things in your life, but it will be worth it one day. Just ask Tiger Woods!
  7. Start a savings account and deposit 25% of your monthly income. Then when you need to buy a car, etc., you'll already have a lot of what you'll need.
  8. Dismiss negativity and begin to speak your future in the present. This will assimilate into your mind and help you to persevere towards your dream.


  • The difference between a big shot and a little shot is that a big shot is just a little shot who kept on shooting!
  • Talk to your parents, guidance counselors, etc., about what they think you would be good at and how to get there. You may not want to, but remember, they went through this too.


  • Ignore criticism, stay focused.
  • Don't do drugs.
  • Believe in yourself.

Related wikiHows

Sources and Citations

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Plan for a Successful Future. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

How to Learn Photoshop

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Are you having trouble learning Photoshop, or want to learn how to use it at all? Follow the steps in this manual and with a little practice, you'll be on your way to becoming a Photoshop expert.


  1. Get the program. Either buy the full version in the store or online, or test drive the demo by downloading it at Adobe Downloads (see external links below).
  2. Become familiar with the interface and tools. Find a picture that you want to fiddle with, load it into Photoshop and try editing it with all the different tools and brushes. Experimentation is your best bet if you've never used photo editing software before. If you don't like how something looks, you can always undo it.
  3. Go through as many tutorials as you can. This is the easist way to learn Photoshop. Every tutorial you go through will teach you something new about the program.
  4. Practice practice practice! Without spending time with the program you won't ever discover all the wonderful things you can do with Photoshop!
  5. Enter a competition. When you get a few skills amassed, try a Photoshop contest, like the one at PhotoshopPlanet (see below for link). You don't have to be superb and you often get very helpful critiques. Just do your best and try to be creative; you can always back up and try again. A cheaper hobby (after the initial payment) will be hard to find.


  • Go to Tutorials for a wide variety of tutorials
  • Adobe Photoshop is rather a difficult program for beginners. It is complicated, because it is almost infinitely FLEXIBLE. You can do just about anything to an image that you can imagine with Photoshop. It may be more sensible for you to start with a less-complicated (and free) program like GIMP, PhotoFiltre or Picasa. (Photoshop is a raster program, so don't expect vector programs like CorelDRAW to teach you ANYTHING about Photoshop). After becoming familiar with the concepts and basic commands you can decide if you SHOULD buy Adobe Photoshop. Not everyone actually NEEDS the advanced features and capabilities of Photoshop. Not everyone is willing to invest the amount of time that it takes to learn such a program, either. However, for those of you who are willing to learn, this is the ultimate graphics manipulation program in existence.
  • Adobe Resource Center / Tips & Tutorials / Advanced Search is a good place too.
  • Some forums are very helpful, such as www.ps-garage.com/forum. they offer tutorials if you join.

Things You'll Need

  • Adobe Photoshop (or at least a trial version)
  • A computer with an attatched mouse (or tablet)
  • Digital camera (or access to digital photos to edit)
  • Time

Related wikiHows

Sources and Citations

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Learn Photoshop. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

How to Recover Data from the Hard Drive of a Dead Laptop

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

This guide will tell you how to recover data from a dead laptop, as long as the laptop was running some version of windows or Linux on an x86 platform, and died of something other than hard drive failure.


Method 1
  1. Purchase a "Laptop Hard Drive Adaptor Kit" to allow you to plug your laptop hard drive into a standard PC (2.5 TO 3.5 inch IDE HDD).
  2. Find a functioning standard PC that can read the file system that was on the laptop. One would need Windows 2k/XP or a Linux distribution to read an NTFS/FAT file system, whereas only a Linux distribution can read the EXT3 file system.
  3. Open up the case and add the laptop drive with adaptor kit as a secondary HDD. Be sure that you have set this drive to either Cable Select, or Slave, depending on the configuration of the system, and the available IDE ports.
  4. Copy the data you need from the laptop drive to the main drive of the PC, or consider using removable storage for small files.

Method 2
  1. Purchase or cannibalize a 2.5" USB 2.0 or Firewire drive enclosure.
  2. Find a functioning standard PC with an open USB port (or firewire port, as applicable) that can read the file system that was on the laptop. One would need Windows 2k/XP or a Linux distribution to read an NTFS/FAT file system, whereas only a Linux distribution can read the EXT3 file system.
  3. Plug it in, wait for the tones (and/or mount it if that is necessary in this system)
  4. Copy the data you need from the laptop drive to the main drive of the PC, or consider using removable storage for small files.


  • You can find the adaptor kits on eBay by searching the terms in quotes in step 1. They cost less than $10 with shipping.
  • Fry's Electronics also sells a Drive to USB adaptor set, which connects USB to IDE (2.5, 3.5, 5.25)/SATA COOLMAX 2.5"/3.5"5.25" IDE/SATA TO USB2.0 CONVERTER - CD-350-COMBO at Frys.com it has been very helpful for me as a computer repair person, not to mention that I've loaned it out to co-workers until they finally bought one of their own.
  • You may also put the laptop drive with adaptor kit into an external drive enclosure if you have one.
  • You may need to adjust the primary/slave jumper settings on the hard disks (both laptop and PC). When attaching either in a USB enclosure or to a converter be sure to set the hard drive as a Master. Having it set to Cable Select or Slave will often times not work or not work properly.
  • When you are finished, the laptop drive can be secured in the PC case and left as a secondary disk on the PC, if you don't need it for anything else.


  • Don't despair if you are not able to read the contents of the drive. Check your connections, be sure that the drive was detected in BIOS, and try again.
  • In Linux, be sure to mount the file system as read-only before attempting. NTFS file systems can only be opened by default in read-only mode, without additional packages.

Things You'll Need

  • Laptop Hard Drive Adaptor Kit 2.5 TO 3.5 inch IDE HDD
    • OR A 2.5" USB 2.0 or Firewire drive enclosure.

  • A few small screwdrivers
  • A compatible PC with an available power and IDE connection.
  • An external HDD enclosure for an IDE disk (optional).

Related wikiHows

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Recover Data from the Hard Drive of a Dead Laptop. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

How to Break a Habit

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Learn to train yourself to break any annoying habit. Do you bite your nails? Chew on your hair? Suck your thumb? Don't worry, there is a way to break all of these bad habits. You just have to encourage and motivate yourself.


  1. Understand and admit to yourself that you have a bad habit. You won't get anywhere unless you can admit this fact. Ask yourself:
    • What is my bad habit?
    • Why can't I get rid of it?
    • What things stop me from getting rid of it?

  2. Decide how you will break your habit. Here's a good method: Every time you catch yourself preparing to bite your nails, suck your thumb, or whatever else you do, stop yourself and make a mark on a calendar. If you really stick to your goal, you will see the number of marks steadily decrease over time.
  3. Build your own "NO-SMOKING" zone : Find someone you like who disapproves of your habit. Tell yourself you will not indulge in the act whenever you are around that person. If you like the person enough, you will find yourself having less desire to go back to the habit. Use the person as an anchor. Just be around this person whenever you feel like controlling the urge. (This doesn't neccasarily mean you can't be around this person when indulging in the undesired habit, just try to use their dislike of the habit to fuel your own will to quit)
  4. Capitalize on other negatives: Use any other clashing habit or negative about yourself to combat the habit. For instance, if you're lazy, be lazy about your habit. Think of it as too much effort. If you're a smoker, keep your pack locked up in your car down the street. Then you'll find it easy to be too lazy to go get one.
  5. Try to replace your habit with something new and positive in your life. The key is not to focus on the "not doing", but to think instead about "doing". Instead of thinking about missing that piece of chocolate cake after dinner, think about how good it is going to feel to take a long walk without all that sugar in your system.
  6. Reward yourself. Once you have gone a week or so with no marks on the calendar, buy yourself a sundae, go shopping, eat at a fancy restaurant, or whatever makes you happy.
  7. Forgive yourself when you slip: Don't beat yourself up if you end up falling into the habit again. Pick yourself up and try again. Your efforts have not been wasted and you have not lost any ground. With every attempt you make yourself stronger.
  8. Open your eyes : Life shows you the way if you just listen. You always "know" when you're crossing a line. Go by your gut and avoid it when you "know" you should.
  9. Visualize the new you, without the habit: See it, feel it, hear the sounds of success. Hear the compliments. Hear your new thoughts of how great it feels to have made this change.


  • If you are trying to break a habit in a sport (eg. for cricket, throwing a ball instead of bowling it), then try doing 20 bowls concentrating on keeping your arm straight. Then sit in the quietly for 20 minutes and "Meditate" about what it felt like, the pros, and how much better cricketer you could be if you could bowl properly. Then go back to bowling again and this time do 40 bowls. Then return to the quiet place and do exactly the same meditation, but this time for 5 minutes.This should break the habit very quickly. This is because it makes a connection stronger between the stored memory and the neurones that tell you what to do. In this way, you can use existing habits to your advantage.
  • Prepare the mind before you do anything else.
  • Pay attention to rhythms: All habits are about rhythm, following a pattern of stimulus and response. The trigger could be an event, an emotion or the passing of time. Break the rhythm and you'll break the habit. Vary the rhythm by doing the act at different times or for different reasons. Try watching too much TV when you don't feel like it, or try not leaving dirty laundry on the bathroom floor when you do feel like it. This way you can remove the mental correlation of the act with the stimulus, and begin to do the act only as a matter of choice, not a matter of habit.
  • Some people say that it takes 30 days to form a pattern and 90 days to form a habit, so plan on giving this a good chance.
  • See wikiHow links below for specific tips on specific habits.
  • Sometimes you will start your bad habit again after stopping. Maybe your mind hasn't quite stuck to the idea yet. Just break the habit as many times as it takes.
  • Rewards may keep you motivated and may lead to a new and positive habit in your life.
  • Get a friend to help you break a habit; someone you can trust in and rely upon.
  • Carry a rock for every time you do your bad habit; or create a 'habit jar'. Every time you give in to your habit, put in a dollar or pull out a slip of paper that tells you to do something you don't want to do, like cleaning the toilet.
  • Don't give up!
  • You'll need the support of your friends and family. If they're constantly telling you you won't succeed, you'll have trouble. Bad habits are often caused by stress, so tell them you're trying very hard, and ask for their support.


  • There is a big difference between an addiction and a habit! Addictions often have biological causes, like substance abuse or smoking. These are more serious than other habits and require professional help. (Smoking might not, but substance abuse certainly does.)
  • Try to stay away from cheating on these things, because you are not cheating anyone else, only yourself.
  • Be careful and decide ahead of time if you are going to punish yourself when you do your habit. Although self-punishment could work, it still has a negative effect on you, so rewarding yourself for not giving in could work better.

Things You'll Need

  • A calendar
  • A pen

Related wikiHows

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Break a Habit. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

How to Organize Your Personal Files

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Having an organized file for all the important information for you and your family will make life much easier. You will be able to fill out applications, track down receipts, and have all of your information at any time. No more searching endlessly for a misplaced piece of info.


  1. Start by deciding what type of filing system makes sense for you. Some things to consider are:
    • The amount of space you have available
    • How much info you have to file
    • The weight of the cabinet or system

  2. Gather all or your paperwork to one spot. Pull it out of the junk drawer, your closet, shoe boxes, where ever it's hiding.
  3. Sort your paperwork into types. Placing like items with other like items. These are common categories and ideas of what they should contain:
    • Personal Data for each family member
      • Social Security card and/or the number
      • Certified copy of Birth Certificate and Date of Birth
      • Copy of ID or passport
      • Finger prints or DNA kit for children
      • Medical Information for each person

    • Immunization records
      • Insurance cards and information
      • Documentation of any disabilities
      • Dr's name, phone number, and emergency contact
      • List of any allergies and medical complications for each person.

    • School information
      • Registration info
      • Transcripts
      • Copies of diplomas
      • Any financial aid information

    • Taxes- This information must be kept for 7 years
      • All W-2's
      • Copy of past tax returns
      • All supporting documents- interest and earnings statements, home mortgage interest statements, ect

    • Car information
      • Copy and original of title
      • Insurance apreement and policy info
      • Copy of registration
      • Spare key

    • Mortgage or rental agreement
    • Credit card or Loan info
    • Bills paid
    • Warranty info and documents
    • Owners manuals
    • Any other useful category

  4. Label each file by the category and place in your file cabinet


  • Put things back in their spot after using them.
  • Create new catagories as you need them
  • File the same way every time
  • Consider keeping important documents in a fire safe
  • Make notes on any info that you are missing and work on getting that information
  • Break the work into shorter sessions over time if you feel overwhelmed
  • Get a copy of your medical records from your Dr.


  • Don't be lazy about putting things away

Related wikiHows

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Organize Your Personal Files. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

How to Choose a Puppy

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

The dog has always been called the man's best friend. The two have lived and worked together for thousands of years. In lots of ways, dogs are like people - they enjoy company, they can communicate how they feel and they love to play too. So it's no wonder that you would want to adopt a puppy! A puppy can be lots of fun, but caring for one means taking responsibility. you will have to look after this animal for a long time - it cannot take care of itself. Remember, puppies grow into dogs and some dogs live to 15 years or over. There are several questions you need to ponder on before even getting one!


  1. Make sure that your home fits the dog's personality. Do you have enough space in your house? A big, loud dog in a small house could drive everyone crazy. Do you have a backyard? Puppies have lots of energy, and they need space to exersise. Having a backyard also allows you to train your puppy to urinate outside.
  2. Ensure that you have enough resources. Do you have time to care for your puppy? A new puppy needs lots of care and training for the first few months of it's life. It will always need at least one good walk every day. Do you have a stable financial status? Know that keeping a dog is not cheap, equipment, food and vets fees can cost a lot.
  3. Prepare a dog-sitter. Is there someone who could help take care of your dog? You can't always take your pet on vacation with you, so you might need a friend or neighbor to look after it while you are away. Puppies like company, so it's good for them when there is nobody around. If not, consider getting puppies from the same litter, so they can keep each other company.
  4. Note that a dog can be mischievous. Are you worried about your furniture? Puppies can be clumsy and messy - and they will chew anything including carpets and furniture. You might not mind, but I don't think your parents would be happy, some dogs can live outside and be taken into the house a few times a day.
  5. Check whether you have other pets. If so, you need to be sure they will be able to get along with your puppy. A male cat that you've had for a very long time could easily get jealous.
  6. Choose the right type of puppy.
    • Male or female? Male puppies tend to be more lively and aggressive. While females may be more home-loving.
    • Big or small? Big dogs like the Great Dane and the St. Bernard, are calm and gentle while breeds like the Jack Russel terrier are smaller, more energetic. The tallest breeds are the Great Dane, the Irish wolfhound, the English mastiff, the borzoi and the Anatolian shepherd. All these breeds can stand at 3ft (90cm) tall at the shoulder. The smallest and lightest breed of dog is the chihuahua, which measures about 5 in (12 cm) tall at the shoulder and weighs between 2 and 6 pounds (0.9 kg and 2.7 kg).
    • Purebred or mixed? Sometimes known as pedigrees, purebred puppies are more expensive than the mixed breeds, but purebred dogs are often easier to guess how big they are going to grow. Anyway, mixed breed puppies are generally healthy and strong and they also come in a wide range or colors, types and sizes. Unfortunately, purebreds are more prone to suffer from inherited diseases than mixed breeds.
    • Puppy or dog? Can you cope with an energetic puppy? You may say that a young puppy is fun, but it puts a burden on your workload. In the first few weeks, you will need to housebreak your puppy and teach it to obey simple commands. You'll also need to have it vaccinated, wormed and neutered. If this sounds like too much work or if you just don't have enough time, why not consider buying an adult dog instead? your local pet rescue center usually has lots to choose from.

  7. Know what exactly to do while you are choosing. While you are still making a choice whether you are at a local breeder's place or pet rescue center,you have to know this information below.
    • If possible, choose a puppy from a healthy litter that has been brought up with it's mother, rather than in kennels. It will adapt more quickly to it's new life in your home.
    • If your buying a mixed breed, ask as much as you can about the puppy's parents - that way you will have a good idea of what it will be like when it grows up.
    • Make sure that your puppy is used to being handled from birth and has had contact with lots of people. It's more likely to be friendly when it grows up.
    • Play with all the puppies and get to know them. Look for one that walks up to you and licks your hand while wagging it's tail. Be cautious of a puppy who is very shy, cowers, or tries to bite.
    • If your buying a purebred dog, talk to the breeder. Good breeders spend a lot of time with their animals and should be able to tell you about each of the puppies personalities.
    • Even if you choose your puppy when it's tiny, don't take it home until it's at least eight weeks old. Puppies need this time to develop and learn from their mother.
    • Check the puppy's health.
    • Don't forget to bring home important documents.

  8. Neuter it before it's six months old. It's a good idea to take it to the vet before it's six months and have it treated so it can't breed. This operation, called neutering, can make the distinctions between male and female personalities disappear. So, in the end, weather your puppy is male or female may not make any difference in terms of behavior. What you really need to think about is your puppies personality. Before you pick one over another, watch it closely to see if it seems energetic or lazy, affectionate or aggressive, anxious or calm.
    • Never, EVER buy from a puppy mill.

They breed much too often from the same bitch and often don't care for the puppies properly. Most of the time, when the bitch can produce no more litters, they just abandon her or even kill her. Don't support this cruel practice, no matter how cute that puppy looks. It could have a fatal hereditory disease (epilepsy, heart failure) which the farmer will not tell you about, he may not even know. They don't care. They breed to make money, and that's it.

Health check

Before you buy a puppy, you need to make sure that it's healthy. Here are some things for you to keep in mind:
  • A healthy puppy will be alert and interested on what is going on around him/her.
  • Healthy puppies are playful and happy to be handled.
  • A healthy puppy's tummy should feel soft when you press it gently.
  • It's tail and bottom should be clean and dry.
  • It's ears, nose and mouth should not be runny or look sore.
  • The eyes should be clear, bright and open.
  • Look at the puppies skin, it should be clean and smooth, with no flaky or red patches. The fur should be shiny and healthy.
  • Do a flea check, look for small, black specks in the puppy's fur. Don't get too upset if you find one though - it's easy to get rid of fleas.

Important information to take home

  • A diet sheet giving information on what to feed your puppy and how often.
  • The puppies purebred and registration papers (if it's pedigree)
  • The puppy's worming history, with the names of products used.
  • A certificate showing when the next vacinne is due.

Things You'll Need

  • Bed
  • Crate
  • Food and water bowls
  • Brushes
  • Collars
  • Leash
  • ID tags
  • Toys.

Related wikiHows

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Choose a Puppy. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

How to Grow a Cactus

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

If you would like to have your own desert in your own home, try growing the cactus from seeds instead of buying them in in the store.


  1. Make sure that the pod is ready for harvesting. After the flower dies off, nothing is left except the pod. Echinocactus Grusonii and most other barrels will produce hundreds of pods each season. Gather the pods just before they dry out, they're not full of moisture but are still damp inside. The seed itself is black but some might have a slight red color to them. The main point is that you want the seed to be mature. One good indication is how the pod comes off, a slight twist and they fall right into your fingers leaving the fiber/cotton on the cactus.
  2. Use a knife to slice the tops off and slice down one side of the pad. This exposes the seeds. Use a little tool (kind of like a small shovel about the size of a popsicle stick) to scrape the seeds out of the pod, scrape the flesh from the pod also and then place the seeds in some water to soak overnight.
  3. Use a horse syringe to suck the small seeds into the syringe. This takes some of the water up with it also and in a germination tray it allows you to broadcast the seeds evenly into the tray. Keep shaking the syringe up so the seeds don't settle at the bottom and all come out at once.
  4. Fill the trays up with a 60% peat moss/40% vermiculite. Create a mixture using one part of this and one part of number two coarse sand, mixed well. To plant the seeds inject them evenly across the whole tray. Keep the trays in full sun but keep the soil moist until the seeds germinate, once the seeds come up (4 to 6 weeks) they look like small pencil erasers, red in color not green. Over time they start to add their needles (small as they are).


  • Use a pair of tweezers to move them out of the propagation trays and into 2" pots. Use the same soil mix in the 2" pots as you did in the trays, at this stage they'll sit and grow for about one year.
  • After the first year, move the ones that survive into 4 inch pots where they sit for another year or two. It's at this point we sell the 4" pots they have enough needles to ward off most of the normal landscape creatures and there well established to be able to grow in their final setting. Be careful not to disturb the routes when transplanting.
  • If you want a lot of Echinocactus Grusonii, get the small ones and space them out enough to allow growth. It's much more affordable to gather a number at this stage that to wait until they go to gallon or five gallon size.


  • Use special gloves to handle cacti when the spines grow, or you risk getting the spines stuck in your fingers.
  • Breaking spines on a cactus is not a good idea, as they take a long time to grow back and make the plant look tatty.
  • Look out for parasites on your cactus. White blobs could be Mealy Bugs. Pick them off with a stick or skewer. Malathion will kill Red Spider Mites and Scale, which show up as brown spots.

Things You'll Need

  • Razor knife
  • Tweezers
  • Horse syringe
  • 4" pots

Related wikiHows

Sources and Citations

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Grow a Cactus. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

How to Use Energy Saving Light Bulbs

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

This article needs to be converted to wikiHow format as specified by the Writer's Guide. You can help by editing it now and then removing this notice. Notice added on 2008-06-14.
Energy Saving, Energy Efficient…..there are all kinds of buzz words out there but what does it really mean? Compact Fluorescent Light Bulbs are an energy saving light bulb solution for your home or office.


  1. Energy saving light bulbs or compact fluorescent light bulbs are a better alternative to incandescent light bulbs. It can be a bit overwhelming since many bulb shapes aren’t exactly the same. They may similar but because of the technology that is used, the bulb often looks different than what we’re use to.
  2. Create a warm and inviting atmosphere, while keeping money in your pocket. Here I’ll outline the different types of compact fluorescent light bulbs. Then I’ll wrap up with giving you a thumb nail reference of knowing what the best wattages are for you based on what incandescent wattages you currently use. .
  3. Decorative Twisters
  4. Decorative twister light bulbs have a similar light output as standard incandescent light bulbs. They are compact in size and fit many small fixtures. Mostly you will use these in table lamps but can also put them in wall sconces and open overhead light fixtures. Many styles now have an “instant on” feature and you don’t have to wait for the bulb to warm up to become as bright as it is capable.
  5. A reputable brand will give you around 8000 to 10,000 hours of usage compared to only 1000 in incandescent. These are terrific energy savers. You may save up to $103 over the life of the light bulb!
  6. Universal & 3-Way
  7. Universal & 3-Way light bulbs provide a soft, white light. Their length of life can be 12,000 to 15,000 hours from a reputable manufacturer. Again, energy savings can be up to $112 over the life of the lamp.
  8. -Ways have adjustable light levels. A 34/26/18 would be equivalent to a 150/100/50 watt 3-Way incandescent light bulb. They are limited to use in table and floor lamps.
  9. Universals, on the other hand, are useful in a large number of applications: table and floor lamps, outdoor light posts, wall sconces, reading lamps, outdoor border lights, recessed fixtures and open hanging fixtures.
  10. Reflector Floods
  11. Reflector Flood light bulbs have a similar look and light output as incandescent reflector flood lamps. They can be used indoors or out of doors when the light is pointing downward. When the light is pointing upward, they need to be in enclosed fixtures if out of doors. Some brands can be used in cold weather down to -10 degrees F. Below that the manufacturers can’t guarantee that the light bulb will head up enough to actually come on. You can see Energy Savings of up to $50 over the life of the light bulb.
  12. Dimmable Reflector Flood light bulbs are available and seem to be very popular amongst folks with homes that have ceilings resembling swiss cheese. Reflector Floods are used in recessed fixtures and open hanging fixtures.
  13. Standard Incandescent Shape
  14. There are compact fluorescent light bulbs that are shaped like your standard A19 light bulb. These provide a soft white light and are ideal for table lamps, floor lamps and open ceiling fixtures. Their life span is the same as a deco twister and may save up to $36 over the life of your light bulb.
  15. Candle Lamps
  16. Candle lamps are useful in outdoor lamp posts, wall sconces, decorative chandeliers, fans and some reading lamps. They often come with two base(the part that screws into the socket) sizes. These sizes are called a medium base (larger of the two) and a candelabra base (fits mostly chandeliers and some sconces). Candle lamps provide a warm and inviting soft white light and last 6000 to 8000 hours.
  17. Globes
  18. Globes are ideal for use in vanity strips and open lighting fixtures. These can save you up to $64 for the life of the light bulb assuming a .10 country average of electrical costs per KW/h. (All figures above are also based on this amount. And the life spans are based on Philips Products life spans) Globes look like regular incandescent globes and are pretty easy to identify.
  19. Outdoor & Bug A Way
  20. Outdoor and Bug A Way light bulbs are most popular in the summer for obvious reasons. Rather than zapping those bugs, discourage them from coming around in the first place. These light bulbs provide a soft white light, ideal for light posts. They are shatter-resistant and because of the translucent cover the glare is reduced which helps to protect the light bulb. Outdoor compact fluorescents can save you up to $36 per light bulb over its life which is about 8000 hours.
  21. Basic Wattage Equivalents
  22. Without going into too much detail….wattage equivalents are based on similar lumen output which is the brightness of your light bulb. The following are general equivalents between compact fluorescent light bulbs and incandescent light bulbs. 5 watt CFL=25 watt Incan. 9 & 11 watt CFL=40 watt Incan. 13 watt CFL=60 watt Incan. 19 & 20 watt CFL=75 watt Incan. 23 & 27 watt CFL=100 watt Incan. 32 watt CFL=135 watt Incan. 42 watt CFL=150 watt Incan.
  23. By using these basic guidelines, I hope I’ve made it easier for you to be able to choose the correct compact fluorescent light bulbs for your own home or office. Take advantage of the huge energy savings that will follow.

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Use Energy Saving Light Bulbs. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Letters-23: "Media Role"

The role of the media in a democracy cannot be overemphasized. Many of our leaders have used the media to achieve their laudable, humanitarian goals. In today’s context, the media play a pivotal role in exposing corruption, which paves the way for justice for hapless victims of crimes.

But when this effective tool becomes counterproductive, it really hurts. Spreading rumours for cheap publicity cannot be justified from any point of view. The Aarushi murder case is very sensitive. It is not just a criminal case but also has many emotional aspects to it. It needs to be handled with great care – Sachin Kumar Singh, Varanasi, Letter to the Editor, The Hindu, Madurai, June 14, 2008.

Grateful thanks to Mr.Sachin Kumar Singh and The Hindu.

Environment-3: 'Plastic Bottles'

40 billion plastic bottles are produced each year in the United States. Two-thirds of them end up in landfills. Avoid this by recycling them. - wikiHow
For a detailed article on 'Plastic' and 'Plastic Recycling' from Wikipedia:
Grateful thanks to wikiHow and Wikipedia.

A Thought for Today :

Almost everything--all external expectations, all pride, all fear of embarrassment or failure--these things just fall away in the face of death, leaving only what is truly important. Remembering that you are going to die is the best way I know to avoid the trap of thinking you have something to lose. You are already naked. There is no reason not to follow your heart -
Steve Jobs
(Grateful thanks to Vinod for the photo)

Saturday, June 14, 2008

Facts & Figures-32: US spending for Energy Research

According to the International Energy Agency, U.S. spending for all energy research - nuclear, wind, coal, solar, biofuels, etc - was a meager $3.2 billion in 2006. The Pentagon spends that much in about 40 hours.

Excerpt from the article, ‘Uncle Sam Needs to Solve the Energy Crisis’ by Jeffrey D. Sachs in the May. 29, 2008 issue of TIME.


Grateful thanks to Mr.Jeffrey D. Sachs and TIME.

Eyecatchers-78: "Road to Vastu"

It is only a few days back I wrote my views about Vastu. Here is a news item on Vastu from India Today.

Mumbai: When all else fails, turn to God and pray that everything works out. At least this is what the disbelievers will say of the Nagpur police’s latest road safety venture. Unable to check the growing number of accidents, the rural police are now relying on vastu shastra for divine intervention. Vastu expert Sushil Fatepuria, with the help of the police, has installed 12 vastu pyramids in accident prone zones to reduce “negative energies” and improve the “vibes” of the area.

Superintendent of Police, Yashasvi Yadav feels the results are encouraging. Since November, no fatal accidents have been reported at these spots. He, however, concedes that there is no scientific explanation for the experiment and explains that his team has stepped up conventional policing measures also. With stringent policing and a helping hand from vastu experts, Nagpur’s roads might just become safer. – Aditi Pai.

Courtesy: India Today, June 10, 2008.
Grateful thanks to Aditi Pai and India Today.

Letters-22: "Celestial Achievement"

By putting 10 satellites in orbit, ISRO has conquered yet another space frontier for India (“Scoring a Perfect Ten”, India Today, May 12, 2008). In the midst of grim news like starvation deaths and farmer suicides, the organization has given us a reason to celebrate. – S.Balakrishnan, Jamshedpur, Mail of the Week, India Today, June 10, 2008

Grateful thanks to Mr.S.Balakrishnan and India Today.

S&T Watch-10: Brain and Sarcasm

Scientists have located the part of the brain responsible for understanding sarcasm.

Courtesy: Claire Gutierrez, Weekly Review, Harper’s Weekly, June 10, 2008
Grateful thanks to Claire Gutierrez and Harper’s Weekly.

A Thought for Today :

All our dreams can come true -
if we have the courage to pursue them -
Walt Disney
Grateful thanks to Vinod for the photo.

How to Make Your Wishes Come True

from wikiHow - The How to Manual That You Can Edit

Have you ever wanted to be able to do everything you ever dreamt of or wished for? It's easy and a great way to get to know yourself better.


  1. Make a list of what you want in life.
  2. Prioritize the items on your list. Begin with what is most important to you.
  3. Determine what you need to do to have that wish come true. For example,
    • Wish: To play the guitar well
    • Need to do: Take classes
    • Sit with a friend who knows how to play and get tips
    • Get some books from the library
    • Search the internet for information

  4. Make it a point to do what you need to do in order to make your wish come true. Start slowly.


  • Know exactly what you want because what you might have wanted when you were ten years old is not as important when you are fifteen years old.
  • Are you doing this for yourself or for someone else? This will determine whether you'll stick to what you need to do to get what you want.
  • Have patience. You have to keep practicing in order to get better. You also have to keep trying even if you fail the first few times.
  • If you complete all the items on your list, congratulations! You can now start a new list with many new wishes. Life is filled with many opportunities and so much to offer.


  • As you are doing the tasks required to make your wish come true, you might learn or realize that this isn’t really what you want. Don’t be discouraged; it might lead to a new dream and/or a better understanding of who you are as a person.
  • There might be more to do than what you initially thought, but understand that it is an iterative process.
  • Wishes come true through hard work and persistence. It is not something that will happen instantly.

Related wikiHows

Article provided by wikiHow, a collaborative writing project to build the world's largest, highest quality how-to manual. Please edit this article and find author credits at the original wikiHow article on How to Make Your Wishes Come True. All content on wikiHow can be shared under a Creative Commons license.