Tuesday, July 31, 2012

The Science Behind The Paralympics

Read the full guest article at AllWebTuts.net

So the Olympics are on and it has grabbed the attention of the entire world. However, equally as impressive and physically demanding, while entirely more awe inspiring are the Paralympics occurring at the same time. It admittedly gets less press and coverage than the original Olympics, but some of the feats individuals can complete over adversity is nothing short of astounding. 
"The Paralympic Games have a long and fascinating history. The second largest sporting event on Earth – the first being the Olympics – the Paralympics were originally created in 1948 to help British World War II veterans with spinal cord injuries regain confidence in themselves and their unique abilities. Today, the event accomplishes this same goal, but on a much larger scale. Paralympians come from all over the world and from all walks of life, but the one thing they have in common is physical disability. These disabilities, however, are not enough to stop participants from offering amazing performances in a wide array of athletic activities.
The Paralympics have changed in more ways than one. The event has expanded into a large-scale celebration that attracts millions of spectators. Technology has also played a huge role in changing the Paralympics into what they are today. In 1948, the technology available for disabled persons was fairly limited; wheelchairs were the primary option for mobility aids. Today, a whole line of advanced prosthetics makes it possible for Paralympians to compete at a more advanced level. In fact, some Paralympians have gone on to compete against non-disabled athletes in the Olympic Games."
Thursday, July 26, 2012

Living In The Future: How Far Have Cars Come?

Read the full guest article at OneSwoop.com

"The modern automobile is so packed with technology and engineering marvels that Henry T. Ford wouldn't recognize it anymore. Although the Model T had surprisingly good fuel efficiency, it lacked a GPS navigation system, touch screens and advanced safety features of today's cars. Vehicle designers aren't letting all of the innovation go to their head.

Engineers are continuing to create remarkable advancements that have the potential to revolutionize the personal transportation industry. Take a tour of some of the newest developments and learn how the humble family car is going to make a big splash in the not-so-distant-future."

Interview with Engadget Editor-In-Chief Tim Stevens

I was able to speak with tech giant Engadget's Editor-In-Chief Tim Stevens and ask him a few questions.
Personally when I think of Editor in Chief I picture an individual much like Jonah Jameson from the Daily Bugle; a fast talking, cigar smoking mustachioed man always concerned about the next story. Though some of these stereotypes might hold true in today’s internet based culture, the standards and work involved with the title of editor have changed dramatically, especially for those controlling content through digital forms. I was fortunate to be able to speak with Tim Stevens, editor-in-chief of AOL’s technology publication Engadget, to ask him about the specifics of his job and how he handles operating in the digital / social realm.

-As editor in chief of Engadget you have a lot of responsibilities. What all does your average day consist of?

My average day is a lot of email. The vast majority of coverage requests we receive and make come through my inbox, so there's a lot to wade through to put it mildly.

While that's going on, though, I'm working with the editorial team to decide what news is worthy of us writing about and what is not. It's a constant process of vetting stories and discussing potential angles. As we're a distributed team that happens in a chat room.

But, I'm also traveling quite frequently, so there's a good chance I'll be on a plane (as I am right now) or covering some product launch or media event.

-You're obviously invested in Engadget and the technology that is featured on the site. How often do you yourself contribute to the content of Engadget and what do you like to write about?

Not as often as I'd like, with so much else going on. But, I do cover major reviews of very important devices and chip in when I can. I tend to enjoy writing tablet reviews the most, but my favorite topic of coverage is the automotive space. I was formerly the Automotive Editor here at Engadget before becoming Editor-in-Chief.

I also write a weekly editorial in our tablet magazine, Distro, which gives a quick refresher on the week in news as well as my take on much of it.

-Has there ever been any high profile or controversial content that has gone through your website, and if so how did you handle the editing process and posting?

The most controversial content we run on a regular basis tends to be our editorials, in which one editor puts his opinions out there for the world to see. These I tend to be closely involved in reviewing to ensure that the argument being made is well founded. It's important that these be individual opinions, so I try to not change anyone's take on the story, but I'm primarily making sure that they've made a bulletproof case.

Beyond that, we quite frequently get photos or information through privileged sources, information that isn't supposed to be publicly known yet. In these cases I try to work very closely with the editors assigned and reviewing the story to ensure that the information we've received is legitimate and, if so, that we're presenting it in such a way as to not expose or harm our source.

-Social media marketing has blown up within the past several years, how has Engadget answered to the need of constant interaction in the social realm? How does the role of Editor factor in to content of 140 characters or less?

We look at social networks as another way to connect to our fans. Our Twitter feed acts like an RSS feed did back in the day, serving up headlines and links as posts go live. But, recently we've been working harder to personalize that interaction more. We now have someone on staff whose focus is managing our social networks and interacting with the readers.

It's important to me that we're as accessible as possible, and Twitter, Google+ and Facebook are great ways of getting out there.

-Your website gets thousands of hits a week if not every day, is it ever difficult to handle the constant wave of comments and interactions with users who follow Engadget?

It is always a challenge but we have a team of moderators who ensure our comments and discussions are clean. Honestly, though, we could be doing better there, and I'm making some changes to improve that. But, I personally get hundreds of emails every day, and many of them are from readers with suggestions, questions or simply looking for jobs. It's difficult to respond to them all but I always try to.

And thousands of hits a day is a gross understatement :)

-What is the most exciting piece of technology that you are waiting for?

Right now it's the Galaxy S III. I'm waiting for the Developer Edition! Beyond that… 

-I have to ask, are you a Mac or a PC?

I'm both! I was exclusively PC for a long time, but since I started traveling a lot more with this job I needed a lightweight and powerful laptop. At the time the MacBook Air was the best so I went with that. It's still a great machine. So, at home I work from a PC I built years ago, but on the road I'm a Mac.

I use an Android smartphone.

Feel free to check out Tim’s work at Engadget.com for technology news, reviews, and updates.

Google Plus Profile
Wednesday, July 25, 2012

HOW TO: Turn Your Inefficient Household Items Into Green Machines

Read the full guest article at Inhabitat.com

"Inefficiency abounds in most homes, especially in older ones, but a few simple changes can make any abode more eco-friendly. While making your home more energy efficient may seem like an overwhelming undertaking, there's no need to tackle everything you're thinking about improving simultaneously. Getting to the big projects will have a large impact, but sometimes it's easier to get the ball rolling with the smaller ones and start racking up the savings to put toward more expensive projects. Simply setting the goal to work through your home one step at a time will eventually result in a complete living space that's gentler on the environment and has lower utility costs. We've rounded up 7 easy steps to help set you down the path towards greening your home -- jump ahead to learn more!"

Get Real, Get Big, Get Real Big With Chicago

"So you don’t know what to do in Chicago? Your scout troop canceled on you? The business convention got postponed? Your fiancĂ©e bolted and the tickets to Chicago were non-refundable? You’re luckier than you could have imagined. Most tour guide articles are either generically applicable to any of the above three situations or written for German men in their 20s with an interest in Klimt and microbrews specifically.
However, because Chicago offers world-class architecture, art, food and accommodations, you can explore more than a bit of a given subject while leaving your evenings free for explorations into the nightlife or restaurants that your daytime companions will undoubtedly recommend. Even more, being so earnestly a Midwestern city means Chicago’s residents actually act as though they have a responsibility to ensure that you have an enjoyable stay. Free tours and other social forays are all available to you with just a wee bit of pre-planning."

Outsource Your Company’s Internal Workload To The Internet

Read the full guest article at BusinessComputingWorld.co.uk

"So where can you start in outsourcing various business tasks? There are different needs for different companies, but the most outsourced procedures can be split up into the following categories: payroll/HR solutions, calendars/scheduling, brainstorming/diagrams, collaboration and customer relations."

More Than Meets the Eye: Four Must-See Sites in Chicago to Make Your Next American Tour Unforgettable

"New York isn’t the only city for excitement and entertainment in the States. You can have a culture-and fun-filled experience a bit farther west by choosing the Windy City for your next vacation. Chicago is the third most populous city in the entire U.S., with 2.7 million residents calling the region home. The city is also home to several world-famous sites, including the famous Chicago Theatre, Navy Pier and Willis Tower—the latter of which formerly held the title of the world’s tallest building.
The list of awe-inspiring Chicago attractions is virtually limitless, but most vacationers don’t have the weeks or even months of time needed to experience all the city has to offer. To ensure you see the best of the best during your own trip, consider the following must-see sites in the Windy City."
Wednesday, July 18, 2012

A Greener Environment: Top Three Most Innovative Eco-Friendly Structures Around The World

Read the full guest article at SublimeMagazine.com

“The world is becoming more environmentally conscious in multiple industries, but architecture in particular is one field that has made tremendous leaps and bounds when it comes to going green. Cities all across the U.S. and even all across the world are doing their part to revamp old structures and build new ones according to the rating system LEED, which stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design.

This system was created by the United States Green Building Council (USGBC) to properly evaluate the environmental efficiency of buildings while offering a reliable, universal standard to which architects can refer when creating a sustainable design. To discover a few of the most notable structures based on these federal standards, consider the following.”

Social Media Advancing Through Mobile Technology

Read the full guest article at WeAreSocialPeople.com

“Social media is pervasive online, but it’s also starting to get more and more popular in the mobile realm. As smartphones continue to increase their market penetration, it becomes easier for users to access their favorite social networks through their mobile devices. Social media goes hand in hand with the accessibility of mobile devices, and the biggest the influence that mobile has, the more it’s going to change the way the social media field is played.”

Beat the Drought by Conserving Fresh Water

Read the full guest article at GreenBuildingElements.com

“In December 2011, the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation announced that Lake Mead – the main water source for Las Vegas – could lose about 13 feet of depth by early 2013. Dry winters have a negative impact on the man-made reservoir, which is comprised mostly of water that began as snowfall in Wyoming, Utah and Colorado. This year, town leaders in Viborg, S.D., issued a water-use restriction, after the town of 800 people came dangerously close to running out of water.

Water shortages in the news and wildfires caused by drought are causing more people to think about water conservation. Especially for those who use a well instead of city water supplies, groundwater depletion and the effects of serious water shortages can be dire, for the environment and people alike. While no one can control the weather, everyone has the ability to reduce the strain on local water supplies by making a few changes at home. “

Use Online Tools To Help Simplify Your Business

Read the full guest article at AllWebTuts.net

“A small business owner will often face a range of complex tasks that would be performed by different individuals in a larger company. They include such responsibilities as accounting, invoicing, obtaining loans, recruiting new employees and processing payroll. Fortunately, a variety of online tools can help to simplify and expedite these tasks.”

The Immense Success of the Mobile Gaming Industry

Read the full article at BillMullins.wordpress.com

“Everywhere you look, you see people engulfed in their smartphones, shouts of joy and frustration coming from playing mobile games like Angry Birds, Draw Something and Cut the Rope. In just a few years, mobile gaming has literally exploded into a multi-million dollar industry (the industry is predicted to break 18 billion in total revenue by 2016).
Instead of just being the applications that game developers made because they couldn’t produce something for a console or the computer, mobile gaming now comprises a huge chunk of the gaming sector.
Hardcore gamers are all about the massively expensive computer rigs with eye-popping graphics and console gamers load up their massive TVs, but casual and hardcore gamers alike can be found with their heads buried in the latest mobile game. Even people who don’t really play games are into flinging stylized birds at discolored pigs. Smartphones have successfully turned nearly everyone into a gamer.”

7 Apps That Make Fitness Fun

Read the full guest article at Health On A Budget

“People are more likely to do a task more often if they’re having fun while doing so. Sounds obvious, right? What’s fun is appealing; it’s human nature. The Mayo Clinic assures us that the same simple principle applies to exercise.

Of course, tastes vary, and what’s fun to one person may seem like cruel and unusual punishment to the next. Fortunately, recent technological contributions to the fitness world make it easier than ever to customize your workout to ensure you meet your goals while still enjoying yourself.”