Summer of discontent: water crisis looms in Gujarat

first_imgSummer has just set in but Gujarat is already facing a water shortage. And it will only worsen in the next two months as the State’s main water sources like the Narmada dam, and dozens of other dams and reservoirs, are going dry. Ironically, Gujarat is faced with the crisis despite copious rains last monsoon.The government has assured that there will be no shortage of drinking water in any corner of the State. Narmada water was stopped for irrigation from March 15. Water Resources and Irrigation Minister Parbat Patel recently told the Assembly that the State has made adequate arrangements to ensure drinking water is available in every part of the State. But the picture is far from that. A crisis is already evident in villages, where water is now supplied once or twice a week.Despite the State’s claimed preparations, approximately 4,238 out of 18,000 villages in Gujarat are facing a severe crisis as their sources have either gone dry or are about to go dry. “More than 50% of the hand pumps in tribal pockets are not functional. Small tribal villages from north to central Gujarat are the worst hit,” said Congress spokesman Manish Doshi.Currently, the water level in the State’s main water body, the Sardar Sarovar dam on the Narmada, is at about 105 metres, roughly less than 50% of the dam’s normal average level. Moreover, the spread of water in the reservoir, which was across 214 km during the monsoon, has now shrunk to less than 90 km, and will shrink further in the summer. Now, the State is forced to use the dead stock of water from the dam.The Narmada is the main source of water for over 10,000 villages and 165 towns and cities in over a dozen districts in the State, notably in the water-starved and drought-prone Saurashtra, Kutch and north Gujarat regions. Moreover, in all other 203 dams and reservoirs across the State, the water level is less than 40%, and will dry up rapidly as summer peaks. A look at the region-wise figures of water storage available in the State’s dams: 15 dams in north Gujarat have 714.95 mcm (million cubic metres) storage, which is 37.15%. In 138 dams and water bodies in Saurashtra, only 656.97 mcm water is stored, which is just 25.93 %.On January 22, the State government announced that water in the Narmada dam had reached its lowest level in the last 13 years. So, from mid-March, Narmada water will not be supplied for irrigation. The State has now deployed State Reserved Police (SRP) personnel along the canals to stop farmers from taking water illegally from the Narmada canals.After stopping water for irrigation, the outflow of water has come down from around 9,000 cusecs early this week to around 4,900 cusecs now, with 4,300 cusecs for drinking purposes.Worse ahead“More than 50% villages in my area are facing water shortage and it will become more acute in April and May,” said Congress legislator Naushad Solanki from the Dasada constituency in Saurashtra. “Earlier, the government said no shortage in drinking water because the Narmada dam water has been reserved for drinking purposes and irrigation supply was curtailed. However, now, even drinking water supply is inadequate in villages,” said Sagar Rabari of the Gujarat Farmers’ Union, a civil society group fighting for farmers’ rights.Authorities have started rationalised supply to cities like Ahmedabad, Surat, Rajkot and Vadodara in order to supply more water to smaller towns and villages. “In Ahmedabad, which receives 1,420 million litres per day (MLD) from the Narmada and Kadana dams, among other resources, water supply is expected to be cut by 200 MLD,” a senior official in the State government said. South Gujarat has 27% less water compared to last year so there is an urgent need to rationalise use of water in Surat, which gets the highest water supply per capita, he added.The crisis seems to have its genesis upstream. According to State government officials, due to a weak monsoon in the Narmada catchment areas in Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat could only get 4.71 million acre feet (maft) of water, which is just 45% of the sanctioned supply of 9 maft is awarded by the Narmada Tribunal to the State.last_img read more

Life in motion

first_imgPavitra Chalam, 28At the age of 21, she was already an established name in art circles. A graduate from the New York Film Academy, she has 35 documentary films in her kitty including the award-winning Anamika: Her Glorious Past. Having done stints at various news organisations as a journalist, she,Pavitra Chalam, 28At the age of 21, she was already an established name in art circles. A graduate from the New York Film Academy, she has 35 documentary films in her kitty including the award-winning Anamika: Her Glorious Past. Having done stints at various news organisations as a journalist, she finally realised that her passion lay in filmmaking. Her narrations are compelling and undeniably affective and have forced the world to sit back and take notice.Time travel: The art of story-telling has fascinated me since I was three. In my stint at NDTV and BBC as a journalist, I realised that filmmaking was my calling. I wanted to share my experiences and narrate stories on issues that affected many in our country. My journey began with Bus at the Youth Initiative for Peace in 2003 in Pakistan and I haven’t looked back since then.Above the line: Filmmaking has been a transformational experience so far. For instance, I saw my friend being overpowered by drug addiction and it changed me to an extent that I wanted to share this experience with everyone. This art has given me a vent to bring about sensitivity in the masses. It has reaffirmed my faith in what I do and what I have been doing.Lights, camera, action: Filmmaking is an honest medium and its purpose is to convey issues that matter. My films always have a human interest angle and I plan to keep it that way. I am fascinated by the styles of different filmmakers but I want my films to be beautiful and show what I have seen. I am inspired by the lives and struggles of those I film and this makes it even more imperative for me to narrate their stories.Intermission: I feel blessed to have a supportive group of friends and family. And when I am not making movies, I try to be around them as much as I can. Being an athlete, I try to catch up on kickboxing and various other sports. I adore soft toys and chocolates and have not been able to give them up, which I think is my only vice. Apart from that, I am an avid tea drinker and cannot seem to get more of it.Stepping stone: Having studied filmmaking, I knew the basics and this helped me move forward with fresher topics and a new style of presentation. In the initial days, my audience was niche. But it soon graduated to a large number of people. This overwhelming response pushed me into doing things even better.Feat of life: I still have a long way to go in terms of achievement and am still in the learning curve. Yet, every piece of my work is special and something we are meant to do. I see change around me and this ability to inspire drives me to do something unparalleled.The path to glory: It is very important to focus and develop an ability to be able to tell stories honestly. Films should glorify life and motivate everyone to help those who are deprived. If young filmmakers realise this gift, a complete transformation in how we tell our stories can happen.advertisementlast_img read more

Moeen Ali commits to Bangladesh tour despite security concerns

first_imgEngland’s Moeen Ali has publicly committed to joining the touring party to Bangladesh should he be selected, despite security concerns ahead of the five-week tour. (Also Read: England go from ODI flops to record-breakers)One-day captain Eoin Morgan acknowledged on Friday he was undecided about whether he would participate over security worries following the attack by gunmen on a cafe in Dhaka in July in which 22 people were killed.An English and Wales Cricket Board (ECB) delegation recently visited Bangladesh to conduct a risk assessment and announced on August 25 that the tour would go ahead, and while the touring squad has not been named, it remains to be seen whether other players will follow Moeen’s lead.”If selected, I’ll definitely go,” Moeen told journalists on Saturday. “I’m pretty happy with everything and really looking forward to it.”Everyone’s different and has their own views on things,” he added, “and as a team, you back others’ decisions.”It’s up to the individual. There’s no pressure on anyone, it’s up to that person and how he feels.”England are due to arrive in Bangladesh on September 30 for three one-day internationals and two Tests.Australia pulled out of their tour of Bangladesh in 2015 over security concerns and did not compete in the under-19 World Cup in the south Asian country earlier this season for the same reason.’NOT SAFE ANYWHERE'”My view is you’re not safe anywhere these days,” Worcestershire’s Moeen said. “I think you can be anywhere and still not be safe. I totally understand, and I back every decision people make.”advertisementEngland wicketkeeper Jonny Bairstow has also expressed confidence in the ECB’s advice but stopped short of committing to the tour.”I’ve not made a 100 percent decision,” he told journalists on Friday. “The world at the moment is not necessarily the safest place, that’s in England, that’s in Australia, South Africa, in Bangladesh.”You’ve got to ask questions because, if you don’t, you don’t have peace of mind.”last_img read more

360i is Top 3 on Ad Age A-List for 3rd Straight Year

first_img360i has been named among the top three agencies on Advertising Age’s Agency A-List for the third year in a row, as the No. 3 agency in the industry.Ad Age’s A-List ranks the top 10 agencies among all specialties (traditional, digital and everything in between), and this year Ad Age cited 360i as “demonstrating how nimble, digitally-led marketing and digital-centric agencies are becoming the modern state of the art.”  The coverage also recognizes how 360i has diversified our work and clients, including “work as far-reaching as in-store branding, cross-platform media buying and even scent technology.”This is not only the third year in a row that 360i has been named to the prestigious A-List, but it also marks the fifth year we’ve been honored in the A-List issue, and this recognition comes on the heels of 360i being named MediaPost’s OMMA Agency of the Year for the second year straight.“The Advertising Age A-List represents the industry’s most innovative and successful ad agencies, the shops that are moving the industry forward,” said Matt Quinn, executive editor of Advertising Age. “That was especially true this year, when many honorees transformed themselves by broadening their capabilities and becoming more strategic partners to their clients.”We are incredibly honored to be advancing digitally-centric marketing and to be considered among the top agencies that are moving our industry forward.  And of course, honors like these would not be possible without the trust and creativity of our clients and partners.Congratulations to our team, to our valued partners, and to all of those on this year’s A-List.****Read the full article over at Ad Age.last_img read more

5 Ways Executives Hide Their Contact Information

first_img Post navigation Executives — especially VPs with the word “customer service” in their title — don’t really want to hear from you when you have a problem.That’s why they pay companies overseas hundreds of thousands of dollars a month to field your angry phone calls.So it might not surprise you to hear about the extraordinary lengths some managers go to keep you from contacting them. But I admit: I am shocked.Just yesterday, I tried to help someone contact the CEO of a large multi-national company.He’d sent emails through normal channels and received the usual form response, suggesting no one had actually taken the time to read his grievance.Email addresses at the company were — an industry standard. But the email address was bouncing.A little sleuthing revealed the exec used a middle initial — and “X” — in a somewhat clumsy effort to thwart consumers from directly emailing him.The fake middle initial trick is just one of several tactics used by managers to keep you away.Now, there are legitimate reasons for an executive to keep you at arm’s length — at least from that person’s perspective. After all, they’re the captain of a big corporation and their time is valuable.That’s not a valid perspective. If said CEO were doing his or her job, then most service problems would get taken care of and only the most pressing issues would get forwarded to the management level.Nor is the argument that the executives have a right to privacy a valid one. If these executives want privacy, they can move to a monastery and take a vow of silence.Their professional email address and phone numbers are fair game.So how do they hide them? Here are the most common ways.The (fake) middle initial.It’s a popular trick, especially when the executives have a common name.Adding a middle initial helps differentiate them from other employees with their name, although I pity that underling, since he or she will get all the mail meant for the CEO or the VP of customer service.More questionable is the fake middle initial, because that’s an outright lie meant to send your email bouncing right back.And if a CEO lies about their email address, it makes you wonder what else they are lying about.You can easily find an executive’s real middle initial on the company website or public SEC filings.The gobbledygook address.Some companies try to throw you for a loop by making their email addresses nonsense.For example, one well-known phone company adds random numbers to the email address; another equally well-known online travel agency creates random addresses that include the first three letters of your first name and part of your last name.These are meant to keep their employees’ email addresses private, but it’s silly.Eventually, these bumbling attempts to prevent you from contacting someone at the company will backfire and in the end, the executive’s email address will get released into the wild anyway.Oops, wrong domain.Here’s a crafty way to avoid the crowds: give your executives email addresses at another address — one not widely publicized. Let me explain:I just saw this with a big wireless company. Let’s call it the managers at had email addresses at Pretty smart, huh?So all of the emails sent to got bounced right back as undeliverable.Sometimes you have to do a multiple-guess when you try to triangulate an executive’s address. But this one’s relatively easy to discover.The decoy.Why have a fake initial when you can just have a fake address?Well, unfortunately some misguided executives, on the advice of their PR department, set up fake addresses and then release them online. Whatever for?They funnel the correspondence right back to those outsourced “customer service” centers for a non-resolution. I’ve seen it.A legitimate manager’s email address is never easy to get, so if it seems too easy, it can often mean your message is being channeled to a decoy and will never be seen by the right people.The bogus bouncer.You probably already know this, but many email systems offer an option to “bounce” a message as undeliverable — even if the email was received.It’s an extremely rude way of saying “get lost” but blaming it on the Internet.I just encountered it today, when I tried to email several executives at a certain large computer manufacturer whose addresses I knew worked.Although it’s a fairly savvy way to make a complainer go away and potentially even forget your email address, it’s as bad a lie as the decoy or the fake middle initial.Eventually, the truth will come out.By the way, there are many ways to ferret out a fake address. My preferred method is through a free service called Rapportive, which automatically verifies an email address if you use Gmail. You can tinker with the address until it green lights the email and then you’re good to go.Look, companies will try to keep the addresses of their executives private. But you have a right to contact them when you’re not getting the service you deserve.Christopher Elliott is a consumer advocate who blogs about getting better customer service at On Your Side. Connect with him on Twitter and Facebook or send him your questions by email. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) Relatedlast_img read more

Moving Checklist: How to Plan for the Unexpected

first_img*This blog post does not constitute, and should not be considered a substitute for legal or financial advice. Each financial situation is different, the advice provided is intended to be general. Please contact your financial or legal advisors for information specific to your situation.Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window) RelatedHow to Make a Budget Using the 50/20/30 Budgeting RuleJuly 20, 2016In “Saving”18 Budgeting Tips to Make Money Management EasyFebruary 6, 2019In “Budgeting”How to Budget for Living on Your Own for the First TimeJune 15, 2016In “Budgeting” My husband and I are meticulous budgeters. Every expense is categorized and accounted for, from our monthly Netflix bill to our yearly charity contributions. We even have separate accounts for discretionary purchases. So when we recently planned to move from our apartment in Denver to a newly-purchased home in Indianapolis, we assumed the budget we’d cooked up would be right on the nose.We were so, so wrong.It’s not that we went over budget by a catastrophic amount, but the amount of surprising little expenses we encountered was staggering. The act of moving your entire life across the country is so complicated that it becomes almost impossible to predict exactly how much money you’ll spend – and that’s assuming everything goes right. If your car dies on the highway or your new place isn’t ready when promised, it could end up spelling disaster for your budget.That’s why it’s so important to prepare for every little expense accordingly. You may never be able to account for all the variables, but you can ease the anxiety of moving by drawing up the most detailed budget possible.If you’re about to move, here are some surprise expenses you may encounter.Eating OutMy friend Ellie moved into a newly-purchased house a few weeks before we did. She mentioned that she and her husband had spent hundreds of dollars eating out during the course of their move. They still had a month left on their apartment lease after closing on their home, and they used that time to paint the new place, refinish the floors and complete minor repairs before moving in.During that time, they ate out almost every night. They were both so tired after working for hours on end that the idea of cooking a meal was just too exhausting – and food ended up being one of their largest moving expenses.I was really confident that my husband and I would be able to stay responsible about our eating habits during the move, but our experience has been exactly the same. We’ve been eating pizza, frozen meals and Chinese food more often than not.Even if you’re normally meticulous about meal planning, sometimes you just don’t feel like spending time in the kitchen after a long day of packing or installing light fixtures. With our new home still in shambles, I’d rather spend an hour assembling furniture or hanging up pictures than cooking a healthy and frugal meal.Eating out isn’t the only food-related expense we’ve encountered. When you move across the country like we did, you might have to leave behind groceries if there’s not enough room in your car or moving truck. Replacing that food adds up quickly.Food expenses can be hard to avoid, but you can mitigate the cost by asking friends and family for a little help. If you know someone who loves to cook, they may be willing to prepare frozen meals for you ahead of time to defrost as needed. Beyond that, just try to choose reasonably frugal options and settle back into a more sustainable routine as quickly as possible.Lost or Broken ItemsThe chances of losing or breaking something during a move is almost 100%. Sometimes it’s just a dinner plate or a picture frame – sometimes it’s your work computer or a rare antique vase. This expense is hard to predict and even harder to plan for, but there are some things you can do.If you’re moving on your own, Make sure to properly secure your items and take an inventory of everything important. It can help to separate everything by category and clearly label all your boxes. Set aside a hundred dollars or so in your budget to deal with anything getting damaged or lost.If you’re using movers, chances are they offer some form of insurance to cover damaged items, and some moving companies offer coverage with no extra charge. You’ll usually have to pay a deductible before the insurance kicks in, but that’s better than not being covered at all.Buying extra insurance when you’re renting a moving truck is also a good idea. You never know when you’ll accidentally scrape the truck backing out of the driveway or a stray rock will skip up and hit the windshield. Basic supplemental insurance costs approximately $100, but can save you from paying thousands in damages.Transportation ExpensesWhen calculating moving expenses, I forgot to add a significant category: gas. It sounds harmless – and might be if you’re just moving across town – but it can add up when you’re travelling across state lines.My husband and I share a 2005 Toyota Corolla that gets decent gas mileage, and the entire Denver-to-Indianapolis move only cost us $90 in fuel. What I failed to consider was the moving truck, which had much lower gas mileage at about 12 miles a gallon. We spent $322 on gas for the truck, an expense I definitely wasn’t planning on.If you’re moving a long distance like we were, and driving a car with poor gas mileage, remember to calculate those costs beforehand. I like using the ​GasBuddy Trip Calculator tool​, which takes your car’s specific miles-per-gallon into account.It’s also a good idea to get a tune-up before you drive hundreds or thousands of miles. We paid for an oil change before the move and had the mechanic examine our car to make sure it wouldn’t break down on the highway.Even so, a few hours into the drive, our sedan’s check engine light came on. It ended up being a glitch, but a more serious issue could have cost hundreds or even thousands – and completely screwed up our moving timeline.Lost ProductivityUnless your company is transferring you across the country, you probably have to take time off work for a move. If you’re self-employed like my husband and I, moving takes up a lot of time during which you can’t work. We spent a whole week packing, driving to our new location, unpacking and decompressing from the stress.If your income will be affected by the move, make sure to factor that into your budget. Be generous when calculating how long the move will take, remembering that it usually ends up taking more time than you bargained for.Other ConsiderationsMoving doesn’t necessarily cost a lot because you have to rent a truck or pay for professional help – it’s all the little costs that add up into a full-blown budget disaster.Here are a few smaller surprise expenses we encountered:Tips for MoversWe hired movers to load up our moving truck in Denver, and then later to move us from our temporary apartment to our new house. We tipped the movers each time, $25 each in Denver and $40 in Indianapolis to account for 100 degree weather. That ended up totalling $115 in tips. Tipping is optional and some consider it unnecessary, but both sets of movers did a great job and I wanted to thank them for being careful with our possessions.If you’re going to hire movers, plan on tipping them unless they’re being blatantly lazy or reckless. At the very least, have some bottled water and snacks for them.SuppliesWe were lucky to have a friend who worked at a grocery store and rounded up enough boxes for the move. Unfortunately, we didn’t have enough blankets and towels to wrap our valuable and delicate items. We ended up buying blankets from the moving company the day of, costing $15 each and $75 in total.We also had to buy extra tape, a tape gun and a sturdy lock for the moving truck so our items wouldn’t get stolen. The total cost for those extra moving supplies was $105.Another minor purchase that we didn’t plan on was an air mattress. We packed up all our belongings the day before we moved, so we didn’t have a bed to sleep on. I rushed to Target to pick up a $50 air mattress. It wasn’t incredibly comfortable, but cheaper than a last-minute hotel room.Waiting Too Long to BookThe sooner you book a moving truck, the better. Prices increase the closer you get to the move, and you’ll end up paying hundreds more if you procrastinate. I learned this the hard way when I rented the truck for our 2015 cross-country move less than two weeks before the big day. Our total cost ended up being $1,210.Afterwards, a friend of mine told me she saved hundreds by booking months out. I tried her tactic when we moved out of Denver, reserving the truck in February for our May move. We booked the same size truck, used the same rental company, drove the same distance and paid $350 less.Plus, the moving truck company didn’t make us stick to our original moving date. We could change the day for free once we had the reservation. As soon as you decide you’re going to move, find a rental company and choose a reservation. You’ll save hundreds and won’t be scrambling at the last minute. Post navigationlast_img read more

How to Choose the Perfect Glasses for Your Face Type

first_imgHow to identify: Wide cheekbones, pointed chin, slightly slimmer forehead.What to wear: Use frames with rounded edges that are not wider than your cheeks. A survey found that wearing glasses makes you appear 75% sexier to the opposite sex. Do you fancy sporting a new pair of glasses but are worried that choosing the wrong shape might make you look bad? Perhaps you’ve read complex guides on how to find your face shape, but are still unsure how to proceed. Don’t worry, read on to find answers to all your glasses-related questions.We bring you a definitive guide on how to help you decide what your face shape is and how to choose the perfect pair of glasses.There are basically six face shapes: oblong, oval, heart, square, round and diamond. A quick look at the mirror is not enough to determine your face shape. To find out your face shape follow our measurement guide:How to measure: Use measuring tape. While taking measurements keep the tape straight and do not curve it according to the shape of your face.What to measure: The width of your forehead, the width of your cheeks and the width of your jaw and the length of your face. While taking measurements, make sure to measure the widest or the farthest points.OblongHow to identify: The face is longer than it is wide. Forehead, cheeks, and jaw are almost of the same width.What to wear: Use large, wide frames with clear lines.HeartHow to identify: The jawline is pointed, cheeks are wide, and forehead wider.What to wear: Glasses that point downward and accentuate the jawline, like Aviators. You can also wear rimless glasses as they don’t make the face appear too top heavy.SquareHow to identify: The length of your face and distance between the cheeks are almost the same. The jawline, cheeks, and the forehead are all of equal width.What to wear: Narrow oval or rectangular frames with rounded edges.OvalHow to identify: The face is longer than it is wide and the forehead is a little wider than the jawline.What to wear: Use frames that are thicker on the top than on the bottom.RoundHow to identify: The face is as long as it is wide with the forehead and jawline being slimmer but of equal proportions.What to wear: Square or rectangular glasses with sharp corners.Diamond Now that you know how to choose the best shape of eyeglasses to suit your face, rush out to get a pair for yourself! After all, wearing a pair of glasses not only makes you look chic, but they also protect your eyes from dust and pollution.Sourcelast_img read more

The 5 Best Foods for Brain Health as You Age

first_imgExperts from around the world have a crafted a recipe that will keep your brain firing on all cylinders.It’s official: Today’s typical Western diet — laden with salt, sugar, calories and saturated fats — is as bad for our brains as it is for our bodies.That’s part of the consensus reached by the Global Council on Brain Health, as reported in a recently released paper titled “Brain Food: GCBH Recommendations on Nourishing Your Brain Health.”The council is a collaborative effort of AARP. It comprises scientists, health professionals, scholars and policy experts from around the world.When members met for their “Brain Food” report, they examined how diet impacts brain health in folks age 50 and older. The council combed through, among other research, observational studies and randomized controlled trials that indicate which foods, nutrients and diets improve brain functioning in older folks.The heart-brain connectionThe council concluded, in short, that the best diet for brain health is the same diet prescribed for heart health. The report explains:“Common conditions influenced by diet — such as elevated blood pressure, high cholesterol and diabetes — harm both cardiovascular and cognitive health. Therefore, a heart-healthy diet is a brain-healthy diet.”Indeed, the report notes that some recent large studies have found that dementia rates decrease simultaneously with improvements in cardiovascular health.The recommendations in the report are meant for all healthy adults, but especially folks age 50 and older who have not been diagnosed with a neurodegenerative disease like Alzheimer’s disease.The best and worst foods for your brainMembers of the Global Council on Brain Health divided their recommendations on specific foods into three groups.The food group labeled “Encourage” comprises the foods that the experts recommend eating regularly. The report also describes them as “the ‘A-list’ healthy foods.” They are:Berries (juice does not count)Fresh vegetables (especially leafy greens)Healthy fats (such as those found in oils like extra virgin olive oil)Nuts (though you should eat them in moderation, as they are high in calories)Fish and seafoodThe food group labeled “Include” comprises the “B-list” foods, which the council recommends including in your diet. They are:Beans and other legumesFruits (in addition to berries)Low fat-dairy (such as yogurt)PoultryGrainsThe foods in the “Limit” group are those that you should, yes, limit. They are:Fried foodPastriesProcessed foodsRed meatRed meat productsWhole-fat dairy (such as cheese and butter)SaltThe council does not specify exactly how much of these foods should be eaten or how often. The report describes the foods and groups above as “food guidelines.”Sourcelast_img read more

Benefits of Spicy Food in Your Body That You Probably Did not Know

first_imgWe all know that there are many myths about the spicy one of them is that it causes hemorrhoids which is totally false, I’ll show you some benefits that can give you spicy food.We know that if you suffer from gastritis or heartburn you should consult your doctor, but do not wait any longer stay with us so that you know this series of benefits that you most certainly did not know. You want to know more? Stay until the end Remember to share this with your friends.Benefits of spicy food that you probably do not knowSpicy food definitely has a great impact in terms of taste. They can provide our tongues with that delicious and fiery taste that makes our body temperature rise.If you want to know what I’m talking about, hit the page break and discover the benefits of spicy food you should know.Combat congestion: When you’re with an unbearable cold, nothing better than an extra spicy curry to relieve congestion. The hot food unblocks the nasal passages and recovers your body quickly.Help unclog the pores: If you’ve tried the chile, sure you know what I mean. A single bite and your body will begin to sweat right away. This is really good because the pores open up and the health of your skin benefits.It is an ally for the diet: It is proven that spicy food increases the metabolic rate, which contributes to burn food more quickly.Improves digestion: As I said earlier, the consumption of spicy foods causes you to burn food at a faster rate. This speeds up the slow bowel movements and relieves constipation suffered by many women.Fight cancer: US scholars They confirm that some spicy foods lower the risk of cancer and are even effective in killing cancer cells.Increases blood flow: In many cultures, spicy foods, such as jalapeño peppers, are used to improve circulation problems.It gives you more energy: Consuming spicy dishes, makes a person sleep better during the night, which causes a deep rest and, therefore, more energy the next day.It is rich in anti-oxidants: Like other antioxidant foods, such as onions, garlic or ginger, spicy foods help protect our health and eliminate oxidants that are found in the body.Sourcelast_img read more

Palm Oil Mill Data: A Step Towards Transparency

first_imgFigure 2. A mill’s sourcing area overlaps Taman Negara National Park, Malaysia (included in the World Database on Protected Areas).Mill DistributionThis unprecedented data set consists of 782 palm oil mills, spread across 15 countries. As anticipated, the vast majority of these mills are found in Malaysia (50 percent) and Indonesia (44 percent). Production outside of the Southeast Asia region now accounts for 6 percent of the global market, as detected by WRI’s new data set, in countries as diverse as Ecuador, Colombia, Ghana and Sudan. Of these, Colombia possesses the most mills with just under 2 percent, or 15 mills, surpassing the Asian palm oil producing countries like Thailand and India.Within Indonesia, palm oil mills are largely concentrated in a few provinces. Nearly 13 percent of all mills included in the data are in the Riau province of Sumatra, Indonesia, which is also a hotspot for recent fires that caused severe haze and alarming air quality. Palm oil production, a major driver of deforestation in the humid tropics, especially in Indonesia and Malaysia, poses potential reputational risks to companies associated with it. Recognizing these risks, a growing number of firms have announced ambitious commitments to reduce or even completely remove deforestation from their supply chains. The zero-deforestation pledges of more than 50 companies leave the world awaiting the translation of commitments to change.One of the big challenges facing corporations in is tracing palm oil through large and complex supply chains to commercial product. By locating areas of production, companies can identify deforestation risk throughout their supply chains and then engage suppliers and monitor behavior to make progress. But for most companies, tracking palm oil to the farm where it’s grown is difficult, costly and time-consuming. An increasing number of processors, traders, and buyers have, however, begun taking the important interim step of tracing their supply chains to the mill level.A new data set launched on Global Forest Watch Commodities helps to globally map palm oil supply chains by showing the locations of almost 800 mills. Created by World Resources Institute, the traceability platform KnownSources, from FoodReg and several processors, traders, and buyers, the mill data provides a clearest picture of palm oil production publicly available. It creates new opportunities to analyze production areas and mills on a global scale, as well as to focus attention on new areas where palm oil production is having an impact on forests.Changing the Game for Deforestation AnalysesMill locations can indicate where palm fruit is processed as well as where palm plantations are located. Because it is highly perishable, fresh palm fruit must be processed within 24 hours of harvest, limiting plantation sourcing to an approximate 30-mile (50 km) radius around the mill, according to company estimates (though this may vary depending on available infrastructure, such as road density and quality). This means analyzing the area immediately surrounding a mill can reveal useful information about plantations that fall within its sourcing area. When used with other data layers on the Global Forest Watch Commodities platform, the new mill data set can help companies identify mills in environmentally sensitive areas. Figure 1. A mill’s sourcing radius (outlined by the red circle) contains oil palm concessions and overlaps both intact and degraded primary forest.center_img Figure 3. Distribution of mills.Implications for the FutureThe new data represents the most comprehensive set of palm oil mills assembled to date. However, the total number of palm oil mills in the world is unknown and the data set, although large, only represents the mills within the supply chains of a handful of traders and buyers. It is difficult to determine what portion of total mills is captured in the data, but it is certainly a significant improvement in transparency and traceability for the palm oil industry. Continuing contributions will add to this data set as more companies realize the importance of traceability and good stewardship in a globally competitive market.last_img read more

How Crafters Transformed a Company

first_imgThis guest post is written by Paul Gillin , writer, speaker, and online marketing consultant. Catch Paul speaking at the Inbound Marketing Summit in Boston, MA this October. Register with the code HUB200 and get $200 off the ticket price. If you follow social media marketing closely, you’ve probably heard the story of Fiskars , the Finnish maker of fine cutting tools that has used a private social network to dramatically boost specialty store sales. What’s less well-known is how customer communities have transformed the way this 300-year-old company does business.I wrote about Fiskars’ remarkable community of crafting enthusiasts called the Fiskateers in the introduction to my latest book, Secrets of Social Media Marketing. The company has leveraged this group to take its message to the under-utilized channel of small retailers. Reaching these merchants would have been prohibitively expensive if done by a core marketing team. So Fiskars let its customers do the talking. The result: a threefold increase in year-over-year sales.I recently caught up with Suzanne Fanning, Director of Communications at Fiskars Americas, to see how the program was going. In a word, very well. What I hadn’t understood from earlier interviews was the degree to which quality customer feedback comes to pervade everything the company does. The Fiskateers demonstrate why social media should be thought of as much more than just a marketing program.Some basics: Prospective Fiskateers must fill out an application form to gain entry. While the company rarely turns down applicants, this requirement gives members a feeling of belonging. Once you’re a Fiskateer, you’re special to Fiskars.And boy, are you special! When my wife, a hopeless crafting enthusiast, heard about this program, she immediately applied. A few months later, the company invited her to a local member meeting. Some 30 Fiskateers spent an entire day swapping techniques, trying out new tools and generally bonding with each other. Dana came home that day laden down with hundreds of dollars worth of merchandise. It’s safe to say she will be a Fiskars customer for life, and she’s not shy to share her enthusiasm.More Than a WebsiteThe company does plenty of live events at the local and national level to connect members with each other and with Fiskars. Its overarching goal isn’t to sell more scissors as much as to “have that emotional bond with consumers,” Fanning told me. “Customers didn’t have that bond with Fiskars the company, but scrapbooking and crafting is a very personal and intimate thing. We wanted to tap into that and say “We understand. We get you.”The meeting Dana attended was hosted by two Fiskars representatives, one from communications and the other from engineering. In fact, nearly every meeting of the Fiskateers now involves someone on the product development side. The value of the Fiskateers as a driver of product innovation was the great unexpected dividend of the whole program, Fanning said.At first, people on the business side resisted the idea of bringing customers into the product development process. There are competitive concerns, and frankly, engineers aren’t known for inclusiveness.Once the dialogue began, however, that resistance quickly melted. “We started with small projects to make Fiskateers feel like they were giving input and quickly they realized we were getting fabulous insight,” Fanning said. “They really wanted a voice in our company.”Speak, Customer!That voice of the customer now pervades nearly everything Fiskars does. Fiskateers are polled for advice early in the development process and the group has even taken responsibility for naming some new products. Engineers, who initially doubted the value of the community, renamed themselves the “Fiskaneers.”Fiskars now channels most of its first-line market research through the group, saving money and time. It no longer conducts expensive focus groups. Research has shown that the Fiskateers almost perfectly reflect the larger community of crafting enthusiasts.Fanning remembers one product manager who approached her looking for ideas for new shapes to head to the company’s line of cutting templates. Fanning posted the request to the Fiskateers and gathered 70 good ideas within 12 hours.Next LevelWith a hit on its hands, Fiskars is running with it. Some Fiskateers have been qualified as official product demonstrators. A new website now lets members submit and rate ideas for new products. Product managers hold live chat sessions to get feedback. Vendors of sewing machines and magnifying glasses devices have offered to buy advertising on the site.The lesson: social media is about much more than marketing. Anyone who touches or serves customers in any way can benefit from a closer relationship with those people. Recent McKinsey research revealed that a majority of companies that have bought into Web 2.0 marketing are finding benefits in other areas of their organization. Many say social media is changing the way they do business. Just like it has at Fiskars.Not every company can create a community like the Fiskateers, but then again, Fiskars never expected its program to be such a runaway success. Instead of looking for people who were passionate about cutting tools, it focused its energy on people who cared about what you could do with cutting tools. The results were more than a pleasant surprise. The company originally expected to recruit no more than about 200 Fiskateers. It will soon welcome its 6,000th member. Paul Gillin is a writer, speaker and online marketing consultant who specializes in social media. He’s a veteran technology journalist and the author of two books: The New Influencers (2007) and Secrets of Social Media Marketing (2008). Fiskars is an example of the kind of new media success stories the Inbound Marketing Summit will showcase. Discounted Inbound Marketing Summit Pass Marketing thought leaders will converge on Gillette Stadium in Foxboro, MA, October 7-8. Reserve your place at the conference now . Use the code HUB200 to get $200 off the ticket price. Topics: Social Mediacenter_img Originally published Sep 9, 2009 8:15:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

3 Secrets to Addictive Digital Platforms

first_imgTechCrunch Disrupt , CEO, DailyBooth , a conference that gathers web innovators in social media, mobile devices, and smart applications, hosted a compelling panel about the shift from traditional print to online media. and learn how to manage your company brand effectively using social media. Video: How to Use Social Media to Manage Your Company Brand Online Here are 3 key secrets revealed about addictive digital platforms: GE has always been known as one of the traditional marketing giants that garners the use of customary marketing techniques. However, Judy Hu, GE’s Global Executive Director for Advertising and Branding, explains that using social media can help “extend the brand and make it iconic. [GE] wants to build their brand and get their key message across to everyone.” Digital platforms can help small and large businesses alike expand their company to different demographics and distinguish their corporate image. Download the free video , CEO, Chatroulette , Global Executive Director, GE 3. Digital platforms cultivate brand building. GE’s crowd-sourcing effort 1. Users define content creation 2. Visual content is universal. The grounds of the discussion revolved around the transformation from conventional methods of reaching consumers to modern platforms that actually interact with users. Gone are the days where static media effectively delivered messages to consumers. Social media sites have dominated the playing field, where consumers choose what they want to view and who they want to engage with. Digital platforms such as YouTube and DailyBooth make it super-easy to upload videos and pictures and share them with friends. These can soon become addictive and viral as people consume content and pass it along further. Businesses can take advantage of this by opening up content creation to users, such as Brian Pokorny . , Founder, 4chan Brian Pokorny Christopher Poole content consumption. explains that “…you can talk in different ways through just visual imagery. Text is less of the focus now with both videos and photos, which can transcend languages, borders, and cultures.” Three of the panelists founded sites where visual imagery was dominant, and demonstrated the effectiveness of such sites in reducing boundaries in today’s global marketplace. Learn how to use social media to manage your company brand. Andrey Ternovskiy and Judy Hu Originally published May 25, 2010 7:33:00 PM, updated March 21 2013 Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

7 Places You Need to Publish Content on Your Website (Beyond Your Blog)

first_img Originally published Mar 16, 2012 9:00:00 AM, updated October 20 2016 Content Creation Topics: Inbound marketers know content creation is key to their success, so it makes sense that business blogs are one of their most precious marketing assets. Blogging is a natural way to get more indexed pages on your website, create content around keywords you want to rank for in search, and convert site visitors into customers.But once companies master blogging, isn’t there another way to expand content creation efforts on your website? Aren’t there other parts of your website to which you can publish the valuable content you’ve become so great at creating — and maybe drive even more traffic, leads, and customers for your business?In short, yes, there are plenty of other ways to house content on your website (and if you’re a HubSpot customer, making an addition to your navigation is simple)! While you may not update these parts of your website as frequently as a blog (we update our blog multiple times daily, for example) adding these content repositories to your website — or updating the ones that already exist — will help you drive even more traffic, and convert those visitors into leads and customers.Don’t let content creation begin and end with blogging. Consider building out or updating these areas of your website with fresh content to create a truly comprehensive content library that you and your site visitors can benefit from.News RoomYou’re likely familiar with the ‘News Room’ concept for websites — many companies have them, including yours truly. The news section of a website is often found under the ‘About Us’ portion of the main navigation, and contains content like press releases about company and product updates, event information, mentions of your company in the news, and awards received. That’s a lot of content!Perhaps that’s why it’s so common to stumble across the ‘News’ section of a website and find nothing has been updated in years. This can be due to lack of new content to publish — perhaps your company hasn’t received much news coverage — or just plain negligence. While we can’t help you with negligence, there are ways to make sure the content on the ‘News’ section of your website always remains fresh.First, don’t break out all of the components of a website news section into multiple sub-navigations if you don’t have the content to fill it. Combine your press releases, event information, company and product updates, awards received, and company news in a rolling feed. In fact, you can think of it kind of like a second blog! And to ensure there truly is content for that second blog, don’t just wait for others to write about you. It’s okay — in this context — to write about yourself. If you’re working on a new product release, write a few paragraphs about how features are progressing. If a partner of yours gets news coverage, share that in this section; your partners’ successes are your successes, too. Aim for just one update a month so this section of your site never looks dormant to visitors and leads researching more about your company.(Tip: Some companies are found in the news so often that they face the opposite problem — there’s so much content, their news section looks completely disorganized! Categorize content by month to make it easier for visitors to sort through.)Resource CenterResource centers are ideal locations to house your long-form educational content like whitepapers, guides, and ebooks. Many marketers are reticent to launch a resource center though, because the bulk of their long form content is reserved for lead generation and driving reconversions through lead nurturing. You don’t want to make that content totally public, right?Fair point, but there is a best-of-both-worlds solution! First, if there is any content you’ve created that you’re willing to share with the world form-free, publish it. The rest of your content, however, can still be behind a form. Simply draft an abstract or select a poignant excerpt from the content to publish as a sort of preview. Then, direct the visitor to the landing page where the content can be redeemed. We do this with our long-form content in our own resource center to help drive more leads and reconversions. What a great supplement to your calls-to-action in lead nurturing emails and blog content!Your resource center can also house third-party content like market research and analyst reports. If you work with third party content creators or researchers, offer to publish their long-form content in your resource center. It gets them more visibility in front of a new audience, and it can help you keep the content in your resource center fresh.Product & Service Data CenterMany B2B companies have technical documentation centered around their product or service — content like data sheets, integration information, FAQs, and release notes. Sometimes businesses choose to wrap these into their resource center, but if you have extensive documentation to publish, it’s best to separate this from your resource center content. Why? Because the traffic to your resource center is in a different stage of the buying cycle than the traffic interested in looking at technical documentation surrounding your product or service.Publish content here for leads and business partners in the ‘evaluation’ and ‘purchase’ stages of the buying cycle — they are more interested in your solution than those visiting your resource center. And to make the most of this content, don’t forget to include ‘purchase’-oriented calls-to-action on these web pages, and within the content itself!Product DetailsIf you’re in ecommerce marketing, you have a unique opportunity to leverage the non-blog portion of your website to create new content. For every product for sale on most ecommerce sites, there’s a product description section underneath that’s all too often left blank or filled with generic (or worse, duplicate) content from the manufacturer. Take advantage of this space to write unique, keyword-optimized content that describes the product, compels readers to take action, and helps you rank for important search terms. HubSpot customer OneIHI does this exceptionally well, drafting content that’s informative, engaging, optimized, and comprehensive below each product.To keep the page content fresh, you can also enable user comments and reviews under the product details. And we all know how crucial reviews are to establishing a prospect’s trust in your business.Learning CenterIf you set up a learning center, you can create use cases — pieces of content that show how your product or service can be used to solve your customers’ problems. This content can be long-form or short-form written content, videos, or even just images with brief explanatory captions. HubSpot, for example, features customer examples of landing pages, calls-to-action, blogs, and the like that has been made using HubSpot’s software.Encourage customers to submit instances of using your product or service successfully (you can set up a landing page to collect their responses), and incentivize your customer service and support teams to collect such stories to keep the content on these pages fresh. If you opt for visual content like images or videos to demonstrate your use cases, be sure to accompany it with explanatory copy, even if it’s brief. Aside from being a helpful complement to the visual content, keyword-optimized copy can help you rank for solution-seeking search terms like “how to create a landing page” or “examples of good calls-to-action.”HubSpot also includes information about what product functionality is being utilized; if you have different feature levels, customers reading these use cases may be inspired by a feature they don’t have, and purchase additional services from you. Talk about revenue-generating content!As with the news section of your website, be sure to categorize your use cases in the manner that makes the most sense for your business — like location, industry, or product or service type — to make browsing simple for visitors.Multimedia Content LibraryAlthough written content is often the focus of marketers’ content creation efforts, consumers certainly love to consume other content formats. Do you have an arsenal of multimedia content, like podcasts, webcasts, and videos? Consider creating an item in your sub-navigation to feature this content. Multimedia content requires more time and dedication to consume than written content — visitors have to pull out headphones, switch on their volume, possibly duck from their boss — so give them one central location from which to watch and listen to this content. And just like the content in your resource center, your multimedia content can still live behind a lead generation form. Just be sure to write a brief description of the video, podcast, or webinar with the call-to-action!(Tip: If you don’t have enough multimedia content to warrant its own section of your site, you can group this in with the content in your resource center.)Reviews, Testimonials, & Case StudiesSetting up a dedicated section of your website for reviews, testimonials, and case study content is crucial for leads in the ‘evaluation’ stage in the buying cycle. HubSpot breaks the content up into shorter customer reviews (pictured below) and longer, more in-depth content in the form of customer case studies.Case study content typically requires more time and investment to create than customer reviews, so if you’re just getting started with this section of your website, consider the tabbed approach you see above. You can begin with one page with only short customer reviews, sourced from all over the web. Notice the HubSpot reviews come from guest blog posts on our own site, external blog posts, LinkedIn reviews, and even Yahoo! Answers. Keeping this content fresh will be much more manageable than churning out new case studies every month.Once you’ve accumulated 3-5 case studies for your business — whether they are video recordings or written content — create a separate tab or another point of sub-navigation to publish them. As with all other content repositories on your site, categorize the case studies in a way that makes sense for your site visitors and sales team. We’ve found categorizing case studies by industry helps leads and our sales team find the most appropriate content quickly.Where else on your site do you house non-blog content? Share your suggestions in the comments!Image credit: khalid Albaih Don’t forget to share this post! AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to Email AppEmail AppShare to LinkedInLinkedInShare to MessengerMessengerShare to SlackSlacklast_img read more

8 Voice-to-Text Software That’ll Help You Work Faster

first_imgIn marketing, efficiency is crucial for success. The faster you produce results, the longer you can focus on refining your overarching strategy and capturing more of your audience’s attention than your competitors can.But the physical act of typing out personal notes, your own ideas, and other documents is much slower than your brain’s actual processing speed. The fact that you type slower than you can think means you’re probably wasting a good chunk of time on something that could be automated.Fortunately, though, there’s technology that lets you type without your hands.Download our complete workplace productivity guide here.It’s called voice-to-text software, and it lets you use your voice to create documents faster than typing, expedite your workflow, and improve your efficiency. But before we delve into the best voice-to-text or dictation software for content creation and productivity, let’s go over what it exactly is.What is voice-to-text software?Voice-to-text software is speech recognition technology that turns spoken words into written words. It can also identify and understand human speech to carry out a person’s commands on a computer.Now that you know what exactly voice-to-text or dictation software is, here are some of the best available today.The 8 Best Dictation Software to Help You Work Faster1. Google Docs Voice TypingMost writers rely on Google Docs everyday, so if you need a free yet powerful dictation tool, consider using Google’s Voice Typing tool. Not only does it let you type with your voice on Google Docs, but you can also leverage over 100 voice commands to edit and format your document in almost every way possible, like making bullet points, italicizing or bolding text, and moving your cursor to different parts of your document.To use Voice Typing on Google Docs, all you have to do is click on “Tools”, “Voice Typing”, and let Google access your laptop’s microphone.Available On: The InternetPrice: Free2. Dragon Professional IndividualAs the most popular dictation software in its space, Dragon Professional Individual allows you to do the majority of your job without even touching a keyboard.By leveraging its Deep Learning technology that adapts to your specific voice, jargon, and work environment, you can create and edit documents with 99% accuracy, quickly and accurately transcribe recordings into text, and use voice commands to control your computer’s actions on programs and web browsers, like sending an email or creating a report.Dragon also integrates with Microsoft Office, iWork, and other popular business applications, so you can do hands-free work without leaving your favorite programs.Available On: Mac and WindowsPrice: $3003. Braina ProBraina Pro is more than speech recognition software — it’s a personal virtual assistant powered by artificial intelligence. Other than its ability to dictate over 100 languages, Braina Pro can automate various computer tasks, set alarms and reminders, give you updates on current events, serve as dictionary and thesaurus, play songs and videos, read eBooks out loud, search files on folders on your computer, and more.Braina Pro also supports most laptops’ built in microphones and has a mobile app, so you can work headset free and away from your computer.Available On: WindowsPrice: $2394. SpeechnotesBuilt on Google’s speech-recognition engines, Speechnotes is a simple, clean, online dictation tool that helps users transcribe their speech into text with over 90% accuracy. And since you don’t have to download, install, or register for Speechnotes, it’s one of the most accessible dictation tools out there.Speechnotes is incredibly user-friendly too — it automatically capitalizes the beginning of your sentences, autosave your documents, and allows you to dictate and type at the same time. When you’re finished dictating on Speechnotes, you can email or print your documents, export them to Google Drive, or download them onto your computer.Available On: Google ChromePrice: Free5. e-SpeakingPicture Credit: e-SpeakingUsing Microsoft’s Speech Application Program Interface and .Net Framework, e-Speaking lets you use your voice to control your computer’s actions, dictate documents and emails, and make your computer read text out loud. The software has over 100 built-in commands, like “open internet” or “open excel”. You can also train words and add more commands on e-Speaking to take even more control of your computer.Available On: WindowsPrice: $146. Voice FingerPicture Credit: Business.comEngineered for people with disabilities or injuries and competitive video game players, Voice Finger is one of the fastest ways to control your mouse and keyboard without your hands. Using just your voice, you can click the left, middle, or right buttons on your mouse, drag and drop items on your computer, and repeatedly click items. You can also use commands to type, hold, and hit keys on your keyboard.Available On: WindowsPrice: $9.997. Apple DictationPicture Credit: AppleAll Apple devices have a built-in dictation software that uses Siri’s servers to dictate up to 30 seconds of speech at a time, if you’re connected to the internet. Dictate is ideal for quickly getting your thoughts down on paper, but if you want to create longer form content with just your voice and you’ve updated your Mac’s operating system to OS X 10.9 or later, Enhanced Dictation is the better option.This voice-to-text tool can help you dictate without any internet connection or time constraints on Apple Pages. And with over 70 voice commands, you can control your Mac’s actions, allowing you to type, edit, and format almost any type of document.To enable Enhanced Dictation on your Mac, click on the Apple Menu > System Preferences > Keyboard > Dictation. Then, turn Dictation on and choose the Enhanced Dictation option.Available On: MacPrice: Free8. Windows Speech RecognitionPicture Credit: WindowsJust like Apple, Windows also has a built-in dictation software. But the main advantage Windows Speech Recognition has over Apple Dictation is that it lets you dictate and control text on any browser, program, or web application.You can also activate Microsoft’s personal assistant, Cortana, if you have a Windows 10, to streamline your day by setting reminders, managing your calendar and email, playing music, and finding quick answers to any pressing or random questions you might have.To set up Speech Recognition on your Windows computer, click on Programs > Accessories > Ease of Access > Windows Speech Recognition. Then, click on the Speech Recognition option.Available On: WindowsPrice: Free Originally published Sep 4, 2018 6:00:00 AM, updated September 05 2019 Don’t forget to share this post! Productivity Apps Topics:last_img read more

The Super-Simple Way to Create Your Own Google Forms Templates

first_img Don’t forget to share this post! 8. When you’re happy with your form, click the “Send” button at the top right. 9. Here, you’ll want to type the email addresses to which you want to send the form. You also have the option to embed the form in the email itself (or provide a link), add collaborators, and include a message. When you’re ready, press “Send” in the bottom right. And there you have it! In nine easy steps, you’re able to create a personalized, unique form, and send it to recipients. However, this only scratches the surface of what you’re able to do with different Google Form Templates. To learn more about Google Forms’ features, tools, and functions, take a look at our “Ultimate Guide to Google Forms”. G Suite 3. Additionally, there’s an icon at the top of each module (six grey dots) — if you click it, you can drag the module to another area of the form. At the bottom of the module, there’s a “Required” button, with a drag tool beside it. If the tool is dragged to the right (and green), you’re making it a requirement for form applicants to fill out this module. If you drag the circle to the left (and make it grey), it’s no longer required. 4. It’s important to note, you also have a toolbar on the right side of your screen. At the top, the “+” icon allows you to add a question. Below, the “Tt” icon lets you create another Title and description — if you have a longer form with multiple sections, you might use that tool to separate the sections. The remaining three icons allow you to add an image, video, or section (respectively). 5. Once you’ve renamed and configured your modules on the form to ensure you’re asking all the questions you want to ask, you can work on the design of the form itself. To do this, click the “Customize Theme” paint icon at the top right. 6. Here, you can change the color theme of your entire form, and add an image for the header — you can upload your own image, or use one of Google Form’s header images, found in their library. You can also change the font. 7. When you’re finished, you can “Preview” your form by clicking the eye icon in the top right. Topics: Originally published Jan 11, 2019 7:00:00 AM, updated July 12 2019 Whether you need to collect employees’ take-out orders for a team dinner or create a feedback form for customers, Google Forms is undoubtedly one of the most useful free tools at your disposal.Google Forms provides 17 pre-made templates, varying in subject from “Party Invite” to “Time Off Request”. However, if you’ve never made a Google Form before, the process can seem complicated.To ensure you know about all the nifty features on a Google Form and have the knowledge necessary to create your own Google Form in minutes, take a look at our quick tutorial.Want 5 free customer satisfaction survey templates you can implement immediately? Click here.How to Create Your Own Google FormLet’s say you’re in charge of a new social media project and want your team’s feedback on it.To create a form for collecting feedback (although you can follow these steps to create a form for almost anything), go to Google Forms and click “Template Gallery” to see the full display.For our purposes, I chose the “Contact Information” template, under the “Personal” category.Once you choose a template, follow these steps:1. Rename your form by clicking “Contact Information” and typing your desired title. Additionally, you have the option to input text in the “Form description” space — this is a good section to include a description of what you’re hoping to get out of this form, and why you’re requiring recipients to fill it out in the first place. 2. There are different features incorporated into each module, or section of the form. For instance, you can click the scroll-down bar on the top right to choose how you want to style each module — including short or long answer, multiple choice, grid, or file upload. last_img read more

Residents Have Important Role to Play to Mitigate Disasters – McKenzie

first_img During a tour of some areas in Clarendon that were damaged during the April floods on September 20, Mr. McKenzie said the parish is at the top of the list of places known to be vulnerable to natural disasters in the island, and that the physical infrastructure cannot take any more battering. Local Government and Community Development Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, says the residents of Clarendon have an important role to play to mitigate natural disasters.“I have told the Mayor (of May Pen) that it is time for the Municipality to pay close attention to how people build in the parish of Clarendon. Too many illegal structures are being constructed in river beds, on gully banks, and blocking drains. These are all contributing factors to flooding,” the Minister said.During a tour of some areas in Clarendon that were damaged during the April floods on September 20, Mr. McKenzie said the parish is at the top of the list of places known to be vulnerable to natural disasters in the island, and that the physical infrastructure cannot take any more battering.After the tour, the Minister addressed residents at a town hall meeting at the Edwin Allen High School.He told the audience that there are 47 shelters in the parish, covering a wide area, including Aenon Town, Spaldings, Kellits, Ritchies, and Frankfield, and the Government would be providing money to retrofit one main shelter in the northern part of Clarendon.The Minister noted that most of the present shelters are school buildings, which are not conducive to providing for the needs of those who use it.“What we have done is to provide money to retrofit one main shelter in the northern part of Clarendon, in case there is a need for it. This shelter will be a lot more comfortable than schools. We will also have two 40-foot containers stocked with the necessary supplies, such as water, and other basic supplies. One will be located in Kellitts and the other in Frankfield at the police station,” he said.The Minister noted that the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM), the Ministry of Labour and Social Security and the Parish Disaster Coordinator will ensure that everything is in place to respond in times of disaster.He also advised the residents that the Jamaica Pubic Service has been contacted with a view to start trimming the many trees that have been growing out of control in the area.Also speaking at the meeting was Michelle Graham, who chairs the Shelter and Welfare Committee for the parish in the Ministry of Labour and Social Security.“We provide training for shelter managers and work closely with the health, fire and other departments, and do assessments of damage to homes after a disaster. We stock basic items and find suppliers for items that will go to shelters for residents,” she said.The meeting also saw presentations from Executive Director of the National Solid Waste Management Authority, Audley Gordon; Director, Meteorological Service Division in the Ministry of Economic Growth and Job Creation, Evan Thompson; and Project Engineer, Water Resources Authority, Joanne Richards. Story Highlights The Minister noted that the Office of Disaster Preparedness and Emergency Management (ODPEM), the Ministry of Labour and Social Security and the Parish Disaster Coordinator will ensure that everything is in place to respond in times of disaster. Local Government and Community Development Minister, Hon. Desmond McKenzie, says the residents of Clarendon have an important role to play to mitigate natural disasters.last_img read more

John Kerry Welcomes Moroccos Initiatives to Uphold Human Rights in Sahara

first_imgRabat – US secretary of state John Kerry welcomed, on Friday in Rabat, Morocco’s initiatives to uphold human rights in Sahara.“The Secretary welcomed the recent actions and initiatives taken by Morocco to continue to protect and promote human rights in the territory (Sahara),” said a joint statement issued after the 2nd USA-Morocco strategic dialogue, which was co-chaired by Kerry and foreign minister Salaheddine Mezouar.The US secretary of state underlined the growing and important role of the National Council for Human Rights. Washington and Rabat affirmed their shared commitment to the improvement of the lives of the people of the Sahara.last_img read more

Its official Canadian home prices are boring and thats a good thing

It’s official: Canadian home prices are boring (and that’s a good thing)OTTAWA — Canada’s housing market continue to show signs of slowing from the torrid pace set in recent years, but also defying the worst fears of an imminent collapse.[np_storybar title=”Here’s how to play it really safe in the housing market — but it’ll cost you” link=””%5DWhile it’s still a very small sliver of the market, the 10-year mortgage has started to gain a bit of traction with mortgage wars bringing that fixed term down to as low as 3.6%. Read more [/np_storybar]The Canadian Real Estate Association reported Monday that existing home sales in the 26 municipal markets it tracks rose a seasonally adjusted 2.4% in March over the previous month, but were down 15.3% from last year.That’s an indication that Finance Minister Jim Flaherty’s actions of last summer to tighten mortgage lending, along with home-buying fatigue, are exerting a drag on the market.But fears that housing was due for a sharp correction remain unrealized as more than half of the local markets saw greater activity, and average home prices — while subject to regional variations — on average rose 2.5% from a year earlier to $378,532.“The readings today suggest that the Canadian housing market is beginning to thaw out from its regulatory-induced freeze,” said TD Bank economist Sonya Gulati.Still, Gulati added that she did not expect a rebound from the recent tumbles given that the economy is growing modestly, demand has waned and Canadians are dealing with record high debt levels.Bank of Montreal chief economist Doug Porter noted that sales in the last four months are down 14% over the past year, but he too saw the slide moderating and that sales will likely only fall by seven per cent through 2013.As for prices, they continue to defy both gravity and logic.“It’s official, Canadian home prices are boring (and that’s a good thing),” Porter wrote in a note to clients. “Notably, all 26 cities reported a single-digit yearly change in prices in the past year, an unusually calm background. Moreover, all major home price measures are displaying unusual uniformity at present — the average and median price are both up between two and three per cent, as is the MLS Home Price Index, as is the new home price index.”The consensus of economists is that home prices will likely fall about 10% in the next two years, with some believing the correction could be as high as 25%. But while home starts, future building intentions and resales have all fallen in the past year — and especially since Flaherty’s tightening action in July — prices remain stable.As with all housing data, the latest CREA release showed sharp regional differences.Overall, the real estate association said there were 39,527 residential properties sold through the Multiple Listing Service in March, compared with 46,669 a year earlier.Ground zero for the cooling scenario in the report was Halifax, which dropped almost 11% in March from February and 36% from a year ago. At the other end of the spectrum, Edmonton was up 1.6% in the month and 1.4 from a year ago.On a month-to-month basis, Sales were up in most big cities, particularly Vancouver, which saw a 10.9% jump after seeing among the biggest drops recently, and Regina, up 12.2%.On an annual comparison, sales in Winnipeg and Regina were down almost 24%, 15% in Calgary, 20% in Toronto, about 19% in Vancouver, about 17% in Montreal, and almost 16% in Ottawa.The house price index that CREA compiles was up 1.02 percentage points from February and 2.2 points from March of 2012. read more

South Korean youngster Jeong lifting gloom at Bayern Munich

BERLIN — Amid talk of a crisis at Bayern Munich, the emergence of midfielder Jeong Woo-yeong has provided a welcome development.The 19-year-old South Korean made his Bayern debut in the 5-1 win over Benfica in the Champions League on Tuesday, becoming the first from his country to play for the Bavarian powerhouse.Though Jeong only played the last 10 minutes, it provided a temporary distraction from speculation over Niko Kovac’s future as coach following the defending Bundesliga champion’s faltering start in the league.Bayern is already nine points behind leader Borussia Dortmund after just 12 matches and hopes of a record-extending seventh consecutive title are fading.Former Arsenal manager Arsene Wenger has been touted as a possible successor for Kovac.Jeong, who joined Bayern in January from Incheon United, was given his chance to shine because of a number of injuries. He showed a glimpse of his potential as Bayern earned its place in the last 16 of the Champions League.“I’m very happy and incredibly proud to have played my first game for this big club,” Jeong said. “It was a goose-bumps moment for me, an indescribable feeling that I’ll never forget.”Jeong, a speedy winger who likes to take on defenders and shoot at goal, was attracting attention with his performances for Bayern’s reserve side in the fourth-tier regional league in Bavaria. He scored six goals and set up three more in 16 appearances.Similar in style to France winger Franck Ribery, Jeong will likely get more chances to shine with the senior squad once Ribery and Arjen Robben finally retire, though he will also have to battle with Kingsley Coman – due to return soon from injury – as well Germany forward Serge Gnabry. Canadian youngster Alphonso Davies is due to join the team in January.Jeong is eager to build on his short taste of the big time.“This incredible experience drives me on to keep working hard so I can take the next steps and more appearances follow,” said Jeong, who has German lessons most days to help his integration in Munich.Jeong was relatively old at 10 when he started playing soccer. One year ago, he was playing in front of as little as 10 spectators.“I really wanted to go to Europe,” Jeong told Kicker magazine before his appearance against Benfica. “If you want to develop, you have to do that. Everyone in South Korea who can play well is no longer there.”Jeong’s agent arranged trials at Cologne, Augsburg and Salzburg. But Bayern snapped him up and gave him a contract through June 2022.“His dynamism, speed, technical ability and intelligence were obvious,” said Jochen Sauer, the director of Bayern’s youth program. “When we take a player from so far away, then we think that there’s still potential for development. We owe it to the boy and his parents that we don’t just sign him to make up numbers in the team.”While his heroes are Neymar and Son Heung-min, Jeong has the possibility of learning directly from Ribery and Robben.“They’re fully focused in each training session and want to score goals right to the end,” Jeong said. “I can learn a lot from their technique and how they move.”___More AP Bundesliga coverage: and Fahey, The Associated Press read more