Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Exploring The Great Outdoors

The city is full of interesting things to see and do, you’ll never run out of things to do for days on end. There is always something up your alley if you just know where to look. And it makes working and living bearable for many. Despite the many preoccupations, though, we may feel suffocated at times and feel the need to get out and get a breather.

If you are not a fan of the great outdoors, now is the time to make an effort and start exploring the nearest one from where you are. With all the progress the world is making, a big chunk of these lands are now being converted into something else for a profit. So, get out of your comfort zone and see the world with a new set of eyes. Appreciate the beauty of nature and the great outdoors before there is nothing left for you to explore.

“In recent years, numerous experimental psychology studies have linked exposure to nature with increased energy and heightened sense of well-being,” reads an article from Rochester University. “Other studies suggest that the very presence of nature helps to ward off feelings of exhaustion and that 90 percent of people report increased energy when placed in outdoor activities.”

But what if not everyone likes hiking, camping or the beach? Are they just left to sit on the couch only to reach for their sunglasses when the glare through the window pane is too bright to see the computer screen?

Absolutely not. If hiking or camping isn’t your favorite pastime, fear not. For the people who prefer to avoid endangering their lives for fun, plenty of ways remain to enjoy the outdoors.

(Via: http://www.collegiatetimes.com/lifestyles/how-to-enjoy-the-great-outdoors-if-you-hate-hiking/article_76fd5cb4-0f4b-11e7-8871-efaaa268e383.html)

If you only open up your mind to all the possibilities, it is easy to understand why nothing beats communing with nature any time of the day. Outdoor exploration is also a big business where big companies can milk lots of money from.

“Outdoor recreation is a huge economic driver in Utah and Colorado, and we felt it wasn’t being respected,” said Sam Mix, outdoor marketing manager for Osprey Packs, which is headquartered in southwest Colorado. “Public lands are where our customers go to recreate. Without these big wide-open spaces, we’d have no business and no reason to exist.”

Made up of 1,200 companies, the Outdoor Industry Association is based in Boulder, Colorado, with an outreach office in Washington, D.C. The group estimates that consumers spend about $120 billion on outdoor recreation products each year, ranging from apparel to tents, bicycles and camping gear.

(Via: http://www.sacbee.com/news/nation-world/national/article141225133.html)

Since the weather and the season affect your chances of enjoying a day or two out in the outdoors, always take advantage of the good weather whenever you can. Nothing can rejuvenate the senses than getting away from the hustle and bustle of city life and enjoying the breeze and solitude that nature brings.

Those commercials and other anti-pollution efforts coincided with the beginning of the modern environmental movement. The “Crying Indian” public service announcement, in fact, premiered in April 1971, on the first Earth Day.

Passing environmental laws is one thing; changing cultural attitudes is something else again. Change can be a long process.

It’s encouraging to know that during the past 40 years, litter in the U.S. has declined more than 61 percent. Still, about 52 billion pieces of litter clutter the landscape of our beautiful country. Yours and mine. That’s a lot of bags to fill.

(Via: http://www.dailyjournal.net/2017/03/29/drinkers_contribute_most_to_littered_world/)

With threats of climate change and global warming just lurking on the horizon, we should all make an effort to clean up our act not just when visiting the outdoors but even in our daily city life. After all, it is still us who will suffer in the end and we might lose the chance to ever appreciate nature in the years to come.

The blog article Exploring The Great Outdoors was originally published to https://maczealots.com/

source https://maczealots.com/exploring-the-great-outdoors/

Tuesday, 20 June 2017

To Vape Or Not To Vape?

There are so many vices nowadays that one can easily get lost trying to remember them all. From drinking to smoking, they have all leveled up and are far more classy and techy over the years. Teens and the youth these days have different preoccupations than what kids did 10 to 20 years ago. Well, they have technology to thank for that.

For instance, when you say smoking, you not always pertain to smoking cigarettes or a good old cigar. E-cigarettes like vapes are now trendy and with the numerous juice flavors to choose from, it can take your smoking experience to the next level. It also looks awesome to blow circles and show off your vaping skills to your friends to make you look cool but smoking vape has its health implications.

You’ve seen them on television, in celebrity photos and in magazine ads — cool superstars vaping on electronic cigarettes. Their high-tech gadgets seem to be available everywhere, from shopping malls to the 24-hour convenience mart. Is it any wonder that teens are being tempted to try out the vaping craze?

Yet scientists are disturbed by the fascination teens have with this nicotine-dispensing alternative to smoking. And with good reason. Data from a growing number of studies indicate that electronic cigarettes are not harmless.

Chemicals in e-cigarettes can damage lung tissue, provoking inflammation. That damage can reduce the ability of the lungs to keep out germs and other harmful substances, new studies show.

Yet teens seem largely unaware of — or unconcerned by — the emerging data on these risks. Their use of e-cigarettes has now surpassed that of conventional cigarettes. In the past year alone, e-cigarette use by U.S. middle-school and high-school teens has tripled. That’s the finding of a new government survey released last month.

(Via: https://www.sciencenewsforstudents.org/article/vaping-may-harm-lungs)

While some claim that smoking vape isn’t as dangerous or addictive as regular cigarettes, it appears that the majority are mistaken and it can be just as bad as good old smoking a pack of cigarettes daily. How safe it is to use remains to be a hot topic during debates and arguments.

For the past five years or so, though, a growing number have turned to an alternate – and apparently safer – form of smoking: the electronic cigarette, or e-cigarette.

It is an electronic device that vaporizes a fluid, usually flavored and often containing nicotine. E-cigarettes come in various types, some called vaporizers, some looking like a traditional cigarette. They serve the same purpose as smoking; users call it vaping.

The safety of e-cigarettes is a debatable issue. Proponents tout them as being free of tar and other chemicals that make true cigarettes dangerous. Medical professionals have no proof they are harmful. Public Health England determined in August 2015 that e-cigarettes were much safer and advised smokers to start vaping.

Although not all e-cigarettes include nicotine, opponents say it is an addictive drug and caution the long-term effects of this alternative product will not be known for a while. University of California researchers reported in December 2015 that they found vapor “damages DNA in ways that could lead to cancer.”

E-cigarettes appear to be popular among young people, who may be at risk, according to the surgeon general’s 2016 report. It said in part: “E-cigarette use among U.S. youth and young adults is now a major public health concern.

(Via: http://www.observer-reporter.com/20170309/clouds_still_hang_over_e-cigarettes)

While many are becoming more aware of the dangers of vaping, e-cigarette companies have now found a new ally in the person of President Trump.

That’s poised to change under President Trump. His campaign platform of slashing burdensome regulations and cultivating a friendlier business climate presents a major opportunity for vaping enthusiasts.  While Trump hasn’t mentioned  the FDA’s regulations specifically in any of his speeches, that isn’t stopping e-cig crusaders from making sure America has its first cloud-chasing president.

Americans for Tax Reform president Grover Norquist is best known for his Taxpayer Protection Pledge, which challenges members of Congress to promise not to raise income or business taxes during their time in office.  He’s now taken on the role of a vaping folk hero.

Norquist is in early talks with Trump administration officials to make sure the FDA’s rules are delayed at least two years so Congress has time to pass bills nullifying the Obama-era regulations.  Trump’s nomination of Georgia Congressman Tom Price as Secretary of Health and Human Services was an early sign that the vaping community has an ally in the White House and might finally find some relief after years of continued assault.

(Via: https://heatst.com/life/why-president-trump-could-be-good-news-for-the-e-cig-community/)

Vaping is still bad no matter what your perspective is. Even though it is receiving support from the administration does not mean it is any better. The smoker’s health will still be compromised if they keep on puffing these fancy e-cigarettes.

The way President Trump is acting right now, it is confusing to determine whether he still sees himself as a businessman or the leader of this great nation. The policies he is pushing for in congress aren’t always for the best interest of the majority of the people of the land. And the sad part here is that most of the people who will be affected negatively by his administration’s policies are the very people who put him into power.

To Vape Or Not To Vape? was first published on https://maczealots.com/

source https://maczealots.com/to-vape-or-not-to-vape/

Tuesday, 13 June 2017

Eradicating Poverty: No Easy Feat

Poverty exists in all societies – whether you live in a first-world country or a struggling third-world nation. Unequal distribution of wealth, resources, and opportunities leave the poor below the poverty threshold. Almost all of them rely on the government for living and welfare subsidies to make it through the day. Some end up living on the streets because they can no longer afford even low-cost housing or rent when they can barely feed themselves or their family.

All governments throughout the world aspire to eradicate poverty or at least offer livelihood or employment opportunities for people to help them get back on track. Administration after administration, the government is making little progress to wipe out poverty and the problem appears to get worse each year as the population increases and the prices of commodities continue to rise.

“The reduction of poverty is never an easy topic to tackle, it’s not a popular one, and it’s one, quite frankly, that makes people uncomfortable because there are no easy answers,” said Clarke, who spoke of his own upbringing in a welfare-funded household in Sydney Mines.

“It’s important we speak with one collective voice — we as Nova Scotians are resilient, we embrace the opportunities for change although change is never easy in this province, but traditional approaches have not worked, and that’s why we as a community have to be that voice.”

It is a collective effort of every community to work hand in hand and help each other rise from poverty and eventually experience progress.

“We are making progress, but I believe the community recognizes the immense amount of work yet to be done,” said Bernard.

“We want to help the people that are most in need by improving access to employment, childcare, early childhood education, and access to affordable housing — it takes a lot of work to break the cycle of poverty and it's hard to engage the community when the community feels helpless.”

(Via: http://www.capebretonpost.com/news/local/2017/3/22/no-easy-answers-to-poverty-in-cape-breton.html)

Poverty is also a problem experienced in various states in the country no matter how progressive the U.S. may appear on the global arena. And the budget cuts being pushed by the Trump administration will definitely make matters worse.

Its State and Regional Community Assessment Report is intended to help lawmakers and nonprofits make wise choices regarding funding and programs to help Nebraskans who are struggling to meet basic needs. And those Nebraskans aren’t just those who one might call “the poor.”

Sixty-two percent reported delaying medical care due to cost, and we know delaying medical care generally ends up creating more costly problems later. Sixty percent had issues with affordable family medical care, 58 percent with dental care and 56 with eye care.

Health and disability issues created a barrier to employment for someone in their household for 51 percent of respondents looking for work.

Access to health care feeds into employment opportunities which feeds into housing, child care and lifestyle choices. Being poor is expensive precisely because these choices become fewer and harder.

The dismantling of the Affordable Care Act and the Congressional Budget Office’s estimation that its replacement – in its current form -- could leave 14 million uninsured after the first year and 24 million after a decade, will put an even greater strain on the social services provided at the community level, making an understanding of Nebraskans’ needs as highlighted in this report even greater.

(Via: http://journalstar.com/news/opinion/editorial/editorial-tackling-the-issues-behind-poverty/article_2bb3d15c-86bd-5f67-a0a0-6415582d9dd0.html)

We may not be able to realize the solution to overcoming poverty in our generation but there is no harm in trying. The government should make policies that help the poorer population and addresses the issues they face on a daily basis, so they can become functional members of society once more and no longer rely on the state for help. Providing health care and education for all can make a big difference in the lives of the people making them more self-reliant and capable of providing for their needs.

It is everyone’s moral responsibility to help a person in need if you have the capacity to help. The world will be a much better place to live in if there are less greed and more love and understanding for everyone.

The blog post Eradicating Poverty: No Easy Feat See more on: https://maczealots.com

source https://maczealots.com/eradicating-poverty-no-easy-feat/

Thursday, 8 June 2017

Are Weird Computers Here To Stay?

Gone were the days when we had to do most things manually. Today, there is usually a tech device that can make your life easier and do something for you, so you no longer need to get your hands dirty. Computers can do that for you. Almost all sorts of technologies these days are powered by computers. From big businesses to the privacy of your home, computers are used for a lot of reasons, and there are certainly still a lot of passionate debates about them.

But over the years, we see the launching of weird technologies that will make you wonder whether they will indeed work. Many times we doubted the durability and sustaining power of these technologies, but apparently, many of them are still here now and even changed the way things are done these days. For instance, the birth of smartphones and other smart gadgets allowed us more freedom and flexibility in accessing the web even without the use of an actual computer or laptop, hence the rise of individuals opting to work at home and leave their conventional 9-5 office job without sacrificing their pay and job security.

So, today Microsoft is having its conference in Shanghai to announce new Surface computers. What does that mean for lawyers though, whose Outlook calendars and pleading templates work just as well on a fourth-generation Intel i5 than on a seventh-generation i7? Does it really matter what the new computers are and how fast they can do things?

The answer is yes, but not because we need faster, better computers. It’s because between the hardware changes that are coming and the software changes, manufacturers are rapidly trying to change work culture to encourage mobility and remote working. We are right in the middle of a huge work culture change, which includes law practices, and it’s being driven in part by these new things coming out.

(Via: http://abovethelaw.com/2017/05/why-lawyers-should-care-about-these-weird-computers-coming-out/)

If you look back on the computers and technologies used about a decade or two decades ago, you’d likely find yourself scratching your head and wondering how we managed surviving on such primitive technologies. But back then, those devices were actually the best that the current technologies could deliver. These technologies advanced further as the years went by.

Today, Amazon unveiled the Echo Look — a $199 voice-controlled camera designed for the fashion-forward. The sleek device listens for your command and quickly takes photos and videos of the outfit you're wearing. It'll even use AI to judge your outfit. 

In a lot of ways, it's at least a little creepy. You're basically paying Amazon for a microphone and camera to put in your bedroom. And Amazon confirms that the photos are stored on its computers indefinitely, until you manually delete them.

And of course, with Amazon's fashion algorithms still largely unknown, I'm not sure how much you'll trust Alexa, the name of the Echo's built-in virtual assistant, to dress you in the morning.

Still, it's clear that Amazon knows its niche for this new product: In the era of the professional Instagram influencer, the Echo Look offers buyers a personal fashion photographer and, perhaps, the opportunity to up their fashion game. 

(Via: http://www.businessinsider.com/amazon-echo-look-augmented-reality-computer-vision-2017-4)

People love taking selfies and posting it on social media. They take photography seriously now and it has helped create many wonderful and eye-catching posts on platforms like Instagram. The drawback here, though, is that we no longer know if those posts indeed depict real life or just made up for the sheer purpose of gaining likes or followers. Ordinary people aspire for the perfection of the photos posted by many social media influencers that it triggers feelings of depression, jealousy and insecurity. Then, there is the issue of artificial intelligence creeping slowly yet steadily into our lives yet most of us aren’t bothered about it at all.

Computers are definitely a staple in our everyday lives now and they continue to evolve over the years. Gone were the bulky boxes of yesteryears that defined the early years of personal computing technology. However, people who can’t help but reminisce of the good old times when what is obsolete now used to be the thing. It's just normal human behavior.

People are always doubtful of new technologies. It’s a normal behavior for everything that is yet untested in the real world. Despite all these new advancements, there are chronic tech headaches that don’t seem to go away. It often has to deal with data storage and data loss. If you want to spare yourself from all these troubles, get an external hard drive for backup. Read this article to know why: https://harddrivefailurerecoveryblog.wordpress.com/2017/04/27/why-you-need-an-external-hard-drive/.

The blog article Are Weird Computers Here To Stay? is republished from The Mac Zealots Blog

source https://maczealots.com/are-weird-computers-here-to-stay/

Tuesday, 6 June 2017

Linux For Beginners

If you are someone who only uses a computer or laptop to browse the net, watch Youtube videos or check out your various social media accounts, then your computing skills are likely on the average. While you know how to navigate the Internet and carry out basic computing tasks, you are clueless on more advanced computing terms and operations.

For instance, only a handful has a clear idea as to what Linux programming is and it is perfectly understandable especially if you are not a computer programmer yourself or a Linux user at the least. But if you want to widen your computing know-how, it pays to have some understanding of what the Linux operating system is all about.

The first thing you really need to do if you want to learn how to be productive on the Unix command line is to get access to a system and start working on the command line. One way to do this is to set yourself up with a "live" distribution of Linux -- one that runs from a USB drive or DVD. That way you can both use the Linux desktop and open a terminal window to start trying commands. If you don't mind sacrificing the existing OS on your system, you can install the OS directly on your disk, but using a live version gives you a chance to sample a number of distributions before you pick the one you want to stick with for a while. Knoppix, Mint, Ubuntu, Fedora, Elementary OS and others are easy to boot and use live. Not sure where to start? Some of the distributions that look really good in 2017 are described in CIO.

You can also get yourself a virtual (AWS) system at Amazon and use PuTTY to connect. AWS gives you some choices on the kind of system you want to set up. This makes trying out commands on the command line dead easy and you can access your AWS system from anywhere and simply cancel your system if at some point you don't need it anymore.

(Via: http://www.computerworld.com/article/3185826/linux/how-to-learn-unix-linux.html)

And while many users patronize Apple or Windows laptops and computers, a growing number is embracing Linux, not just limiting itself to computing but also to other aspects of technology.

ON AUGUST 25, 1991, a Finnish computer science student named Linus Torvalds announced a new project. “I’m doing a (free) operating system,” he wrote on an Internet messaging system, insisting this would just be a hobby.

But it became something bigger. Much bigger. Today, that open source operating system—Linux—is one of the most important pieces of computer software in the world. Chances are, you use it every day. Linux runs every Android phone and tablet on Earth. And even if you’re on an iPhone or a Mac or a Windows machine, Linux is working behind the scenes, across the Internet, serving up most of the webpages you view and powering most of the apps you use. Facebook, Google, Pinterest, Wikipedia—it’s all running on Linux.

Plus, Linux is now finding its way onto televisions, thermostats, and even cars. As software creeps into practically every aspect of our lives, so does the OS designed by Linus Torvalds.

(Via: https://www.wired.com/2016/08/linux-took-web-now-taking-world/)

As the popularity of the Internet grows, so does that of Linux. While most users prefer more user-friendly OS like Windows and MacOS, the big part of the web runs on the Linux open source operating system – whether for commercial or non-commercial use. And we are talking about some of the largest companies in the world relying on Linux to run their business.

Anyone with computer know-how is free to make modifications to it to suit their needs. And as technology keeps on pushing forward and defying limitations, Linux will be one of the silent forces that powers it to keep on going forward.

Linux For Beginners is republished from https://maczealots.com

source https://maczealots.com/linux-for-beginners/

Monday, 5 June 2017

How To Recover Data When Your Hard Drive Fails?

Nothing can be as annoying and scary as losing important data. As our technology keeps on pushing forward and we make use of it more and more in our daily life, we also transfer, save, and store important files on various gadgets that we own – whether it be the photos during the last holiday, your curriculum vitae, or even more important documents from school or work.

When you face such a situation, you may easily succumb to panic and lament the untimely disposal of your files and you may be wondering if it is possible to recover data even when your hard drive has already failed. While most technical problems require expert help from computer experts, you can actually recover lost data on your own. You’d be surprised that the web is full of helpful how-to guides for people who have the guts to do things on their own, no matter how challenging something may be.

Hard Drive is the most basic and integral part of any computer unit.  This primary storage hardware unit has a number of disks associated with it, each having its own memory reader as well as a writer head. Thereby, it is considered as a perfect option to salvage your data and maintain its integrity.

Like all other devices, this indispensable unit has a limited shelf-life; however, it is still prone to damage or crash, regardless of the model and make of the hard drive which the user is using.

It may happen when you start your system to resume work on your PC and see a Blue screen of death. It can also happen when you start up your system, it starts producing some abrupt electrical fizzing sounds. These are some of the situations that users can encounter. There are more hard drive failures too. And, for this, a proper analysis is required.

Even in such situations, you may assume that your priceless photos and videos, business-critical documents, and other important files are lost forever, and may run to a state of despair; however, there is a reason to look up as they can still be recovered.

(Via: http://www.valuewalk.com/2017/03/data-recovery-hard-drive/)

For your ease and convenience, you can refer to these hard drive recovery steps to save yourself from unnecessary stress and worries.

Step One: Assemble Your Tools and Examine The Drive's Condition

The first thing to do is make sure you have the tools required to connect this drive to another computer safely. Ideally, you'll have some kind of SATA/IDE to USB cable or USB drive enclosure or sled that you can mount the drive into and connect it to your computer easily.

Next, take a look at the drive itself. Is it damaged in any way? Are the pins bent or broken? Make sure that the drive is in good enough condition to actually use before you try anything in the first place that may damage it even further. If the drive is too physically damaged to attempt recovery, you may need more drastic measures that we'll get to later. If everything looks good and you have the equipment required to connect the drive to your system, we can proceed.

Step Two: Grab Some Data Recovery Software and Connect the Drive

Before you do much else, make sure your antivirus and antimalware tools are up to date. You don't know what you'll find on this drive, and you don't want it to start misbehaving once the drive is connected to an active system. Once you've done that, it's time to download and install some data recovery tools. 

Recuva (Windows, Free)

FileSalvage (OS X, $80)

TestDisk (Win/OS X/Linux, Free)

(Via: http://lifehacker.com/5951822/how-can-i-recover-data-from-a-dead-or-erased-hard-drive)

If nothing else works, that’s when you throw in the towel and call the pros to intervene or risk damaging your hard drive even more and lose your precious data forever. But to save yourself from going through the same ordeal again, better back up your data or purchase an external hard drive if your budget permits. You can even count on the cloud to provide extra storage space. After all, better be safe than be sorry.

How To Recover Data When Your Hard Drive Fails? was initially published on https://maczealots.com/

source https://maczealots.com/how-to-recover-data-when-your-hard-drive-fails/