Archive for September 20th, 2012

The Top 10 Skiing Gadgets

Skiing is a lot of fun, but it has some downsides such as the cold and the potential danger. Luckily, there are a lot of inventive minds working on these problems and they have come up with some pretty interesting gadgets. These are the top 10 gadgets that are either fun, useful, or some combination of the two.

 

1. REI Ski Carrier

 

Skis are big and awkward and once the poles are added in it’s often something like a dance trying to get everything to and from the slopes. The REI ski carrier is a very bland looking piece of strapping, but it holds all of your equipment snugly and allows you to even have a hand free. At only $12.50, it is an absolute must for all skiers.

 

2. Pro-Tec Audio Force Helmet

 

Wearing a helmet on the slopes might seem like a bit of a drastic measure but it’s probably not a bad idea. It’s definitely a better idea than trying to wear headphones, which this helmet can substitute for. It has speakers within the ear pads and is compatible with most types of audio players.

 

3. Get A Grip Clip-on Grips

 

Ski boots are great for skiing but not so great for walking. Ski boots don’t have much of a texture to the sole, which makes walking on slippery, icy roads and pathways interesting to say the least. These clip-on grips for ski boots provide some very useful extra traction.

 

4. Thermic Smartpac

 

Heated insoles for your ski boots. These are words that many people have prayed they would someday hear and now they are a reality. They even have levels so that you can determine how toasty you want your toes to be. The lithium-ion battery pack clips to your boot and can be quickly recharged in just an hour or two.

 

5. Ski Mojo

 

The British-made Ski Mojo system is either a funny joke or a useful product but people disagree on which. Either way, it is an innovative idea. The system looks like two medical knee braces, complete with the fancy hinge. Supposedly, it takes up to 30 percent of the strain off your knees, allowing you to ski longer.

 

6. Venture Trizone Heated Fleece Jacket

 

The name of the product pretty much says it all. If you love skiing but can’t stand the cold, pair up this heated jacket with some heated boot insoles and stay toasty warm on the slopes. The front and back of the jacket can be heated separately for maximum comfort.

 

7. Talus Outdoor Technologies ColdAvenger Pro Ski Mask

 

This one sounds ridiculous but is probably actually useful. That bite of icy cold air into your lungs could be a distant memory if you use this handy gadget to heat your breath a bit before it hits your insides. It’s surprisingly affordable at a little under $40.

 

8. Zeal GPS Goggles

 

For those skiers who must have the latest and greatest gear, this is just the thing. It’s a pair of goggles that has a GPS system built in. Users view an LCD screen mounted inside the goggles while the system tracks where you are, where you’ve been and what speeds you’ve reached.

 

9. The Avalanche Airbag Safety

 

This one is either over the top or absolutely necessary. It is an inflatable airbag that creates more space and provides lift if you are trapped in an avalanche. The extra space gives you more breathing time and the lift supposedly pulls you towards the surface to make you easier to find.

 

10. Digital Avalanche Transceiver

 

This seems like a more practical device, if only because it is smaller. Avalanche transceivers let rescue crews locate you if you are trapped in an avalanche, but they don’t come cheap. Expect to spend at least $200 for a baseline model.

 

Visit the MadDogSki website to find out all of the latest skiing and snowboarding information.

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Top 3 Website Mistakes That Can Affect You Business

What many people in business do not know is that a website will either create or destroy a business. Most of the successful companies we see today owe part of their success to their website and proper search engine optimization strategies. Daily, the growing number of people that use the internet come across website design flaws that range from disturbing pop ups to confusing sites that are filled with links which ruin the joyous experience of the person browsing. Coming up with a website can be a daunting task; the challenge that is there is making it to be user friendly. Most website designers have one problem, and that is focusing on the creativity of a website and ignoring the usability when they are designing the site.

The other issue that is affecting many people is getting appropriate SEO strategies that will help in the growth of business. The higher your website rank on search engines, the higher your business will grow since you will be getting more customers. Many websites fall because they employ ineffective SEO strategies that will destroy instead of building. You can read many books and do many courses but without care of avoiding some simple mistakes, then you will just be wasting time. If you want to climb up the ladder in business, below are some top three website mistakes that you should avoid at all costs.

Poor website organization and content

How you organize content on your website will either help in making it succeed or fail. Research shows that most average website users do not actually read text blocks not unless they find it very necessary. They will just scan and look for points of interest. Blocks of wordings that do not have headings, sub headings, paragraphs, keywords and bullets when necessary is what many websites today are composed of. There are some that even forget to mention the web pages. Do not cram so much on one page but rather focus on good attention grabbers. Break your paragraphs well and evenly so that the site also looks attractive and make descriptions as vivid as possible and put pictures appropriately. The content that you put is also very important. Strive to have competitive, unique web copy statements that will sell your services. Find innovative ways of saying how different you are from your competitors.

Low standard website design that is difficult to navigate

If your website has a poor design and seems difficult to navigate through, web browsers are most likely to quit continue using it. They will find themselves hitting the back button and go back to the search engine to search for other websites. Search boxes are one of the most important things that a website should have. Many people use it when looking for information on sites; therefore, you need to put it in a visible place that will not give somebody a hard time to find it. A mistake that many websites do is having a hidden contact button. The contact button is essential because if a potential customer is satisfied with the information found on the website, the next step will be to find the contact page. If it is hidden, then chances are high that they may look for services elsewhere. A website should be simple, neat and navigable.

Omitted SEO basics

This is one factor that many websites owners have no idea of how to use it. An important factor when you are using SEO for websites is appropriate key word research. You should be able to visualize the words that your potential clients will be typing when looking for information and use them on your website. Having unique titles that match with key words and the web copy is a very good step towards website success. It is also important for the content to have H1 tags because they are helpful in ensuring that your information is found. The keywords should not just be placed haphazardly but they should be used as naturally as possible to assist with the flow of the content. Therefore, you need to do a thorough research on the SEO tips so that you understand how to place words on your site to facilitate an easy search for the person that is looking for information. These are some of the top three website mistakes that can affect your business. Correct them today and see your business improve drastically.

Author Bio:

Rahul Makhija is the online manager for Lancaster PA Web Design. Rahul consults companies on online marketing, product development, and strategy. During his free time he enjoys reading about human behavior.

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Best Android Mobile Apps for Personal Branding

For every blogger, writer, branding expert, celebrity and other professionals into personal branding, you just can’t avoid that you’re always on-the-go. Whether you’re called at a meeting, seminar, or training, it’s important that you keep yourself updated in the Internet arena. Boosting your personal brand might be hard to manage alone, but here are some mobile apps for smart phones that you can use to keep in touch with your audience:

 

For Blog Management:

 

WordPress

Automattic, Inc.

A new application for your Android phone where you can write new posts, comments and update your WordPress blog. It is free that a lot of people now are using this to show the world what they are up to, their likes and interests. You can also use this app to view stats and even write comments on several blogs.

 

Blogger

Google Inc.

An easier and new way to start your blog! This app is quite popular now for those people who are into blogging because it allows the blogger to post pictures and local information faster and easier. It is so convenient that it allows you to view multiple blogs or accounts. Blogger app is simply helpful for having a blog that is always on the go.

 

Chrome

Google Inc.

Browse the Internet with Chrome. It is a new web browser app for your Android phone that is much easier and faster. Chrome also allows you to sign in and sync to your personalized Chrome and enjoy it anywhere you go.

 

For Communication:

 

Facebook Messenger

Facebook

A new evolution in sending messages. It is now faster and reliable that you can easily send messages to your friends and family with the new Facebook Messenger. It is like chatting with them as if they are in front of you. It can be used either through phone, web or tablet.

 

Skype – free IM & video calls

Skype

The most convenient way to communicate with your loved ones is through Skype. It allows the user to contact their loved ones anywhere in the world for free even using the android phone, tablet or computer. Phone calls, video calls, conference and IM are some of its features.

 

Gmail

Google Inc.

An easier way to access all your emails and documents whenever you are on the go! Gmail is more reliable and efficient to use. It also allows you to reply or answer all your online of offline conversations right away and search and find emails. Gmail also allows you to manage all accounts, view attachments and other tasks.

 

For Note Taking:

 

Evernote

Evernote Corp.

Evernote is an app where you can stay updated anywhere you go. It allows you to take notes, take photos, make to-do-list, and remind you in everything you need to do. In short, Evernote is the app best for all the people who are always on the go!

 

Catch Notes

Catch.com

The application that helps you to stay creative even during your busiest time. Catch Notes allows you to stay on the ideas that you had and even discover more. It also enables you to make your ideas into action together with your friends by just using your phone.

 

Voice Recorder

Mamoru Tokashiki

Fond of voice recorder? Well, Mamoru Tokashiki is the best app for you! It is very handy that you can use it everywhere. It allows you to send data thru Gmail, even set recordings as your ringtones, time recording and even allows you to search items by title and date.

For Productivity:

 

Business Calendar

Appgenix Software

It is synchronized to your Google calendars that enables you to remind you about everything that you have to do. It is so accessible and reliable app for the people who are always busy having different business meetings.

 

Trello

Fog Creek Software

This app allows you to stay on track. It will remind you about the surprise party you are planning for your friend, things to do for the weekend, tracking the items on sale of your favorite boutique or anything that you want to be reminded of. It is like an event alarm clock.

 

Dropbox

Dropbox, Inc.

You don’t have to save photos to your computer and your phone in different time. With Dropbox app, once you saved a photo, it automatically saves the photo to your computer as well. It is like an app connected to your computer. With Dropbox, you can bring or carry around your photos everywhere you go.

 

With these advanced applications for your phone, you can do tasks that you usually do with your laptops or computers. These apps will enable you to do the same things anywhere and everywhere you go. Multitasking is as easy as 1, 2, and 3 with the help of these apps.

 

Author Bio

Alexis Trinidad is a technology freak who owns an Asus Nexus 7 on Android JellyBean. She is inspired to create her own personal brand because of Martin Lindstrom, a branding consultant and author of bestselling Brandwashed and Buyology.

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Will Mass Production Become Obsolete Soon?

Earlier this year, The Economist published a 14-page special report titled “A third industrial revolution”, echoing the first and second industrial revolutions which respectively led to the mechanization of the textile industry in the 18th century, and to the introduction of mass production thanks to the moving assembly line in the 20th century. If a third industrial revolution is on its way, what will it replace mass production with?

The Age of Customization 

In today’s world, when one wishes to buy a hammer, he or she simply… goes to the shop and buys a hammer! Generally speaking, this hammer is not customized: it is mass-produced, meaning that hundreds of thousands of identical hammers are sold in other shops.

In broad terms, mass production simply is the process of making the same object over and over again by assembling parts that were previously made over and over again too. The awaited third industrial revolution, however, is thought to have the potential to do just the opposite: objects will be tailor-made.

Nowadays, this idea sounds quite unlikely. Imagine you want a purple hammer, with a handle made of mahogany that is exactly 23.17 cm long and with a steel head that is exactly 8.43 cm wide. Finding a company willing – and able – to make such a hammer for you already is quite a challenge. And if you are lucky enough to find one, the amount of money you will have to pay for such a hammer will quickly dissuade you!

The third industrial revolution, however, could lower these customization costs significantly. How? By performing additive manufacturing. All that is needed is a computer and a printer, but not any kind of printer: a 3D printer!

 

The Age of Digitization 

3D printers were not initially conceived to build objects; they were essentially designed to make one-off prototypes. But as the technology improved, finished goods came to be produced and will soon represent more than half the money spent on 3D printers. Shells for hearing aids, dental crowns, ready-to-wear shoes and cupcakes – yes, cupcakes! – are among the many things that 3D printers already make.

The process of printing an object is more or less similar to that of printing a letter. The biggest difference lies in the fact that 3D printers rely on a software which takes a series of digital slices of the object to be made and then sends these slices’ descriptions to the printer, whose job is to successively add multiple thin layers of material until the object is finally made.

The anticipated impacts of this revolution in the way we make objects are manifold. The industrial work organization chart could be deeply affected, leaving factories almost desert and crowding offices with designers, engineers, marketing staff, and so on; the need for a highly-educated local population could be stronger than ever. And instead of flowing evermore to developing countries, production could come back to the West.

The potential effects of the forecasted third industrial revolution are still hard to assess due to the relative novelty of the digitization and customization of pWill Mass Production Become Obsolete Soonroduction. Is it highly probable, however, that both positive and negative large-scale changes will occur in our way of living. Mass production should not be obsolete in the years to come, but has a serious long-term contender that holds the promise of matching every single consumer’s whims…

About the author:

Alexandre Duval is a blogger for Merlin Assurance. He is also currently completing his master’s degree in political science at the University of Quebec in Montreal.

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Top 5 cases for the iPhone 5

With the iPhone 5 due to reach pre-order customers by Friday this week, I thought it was a good time to have a look at what iPhone 5 accessories are already available. Let’s start out with the best five cases.

5: Belkin Flex Case Pack Black / Clear

The Belkin Flex Case pack actually comes with two cases – one black, one white. It’s perfect if you’re looking for a case pack to split with a friend, or you just want to change your case to match your mood or your outfit. Both cases include a geometric pattern on the back that looks cool but also adds grip, making it harder to accidentally drop your phone.

4: Sparkles Diamante Case for iPhone 5 Black, Purple, Red

This glitzy case adds Diamante elements in a pinprick pattern that looks quite eye-catching. The case, which is available in black, purple and red colourways, offers moderate protection against drops and good protection against scratches. The Diamante case is definitely not to all tastes, but I’m sure it’ll be well-loved by some.

3: Gear4 Guardian Case Black, White

The Guardian, beyond being a Zerg unit in StarCraft*, is a brilliant case for the iPhone 5 that emphasises protection. It includes a strong TPU design that will protect adequately against all manner of damage, including from drops, scratches and scuffs. The Guardian Case is available in either black or white.

2: FlexiShield Skin for iPhone 5 Blue, Pink, Purple, Clear

Our previous cases have been a bit monochromatic, so how about something a little more colourful? These FlexiShield Skins offer a splash of colour in blue, pink, purple or clear. As well as customising your phone in one of four colours, these gel plastic shells also provide good protection against drops and scratches without breaking the bank.

1: Cygnett UrbanShield Silver

This case is all about the protection and is made from premium-grade machined aluminum. That grants it a lot of strength and rigidity, making it much harder to accidentally snap your iPhone in half. The construction material choice also allows for a dramatically thin case that will add little to the bulk of your iPhone 5, yet still provide good resistance against scratches and scuffs. The contemporary look of the case fits with Apple’s recent designs too, making it a shoe-in for the top slot this time around.

Conclusion

So, there we have it! I hope you find a case that you like amongst these. More iPhone 5 accessories will be released all the time, so stay tuned as we bring you continuing updates! Thanks for reading and have a great day.

*Crossover of iPhone 5 buyers and StarCraft I players: more than 1?

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