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Wednesday, October 31, 2007

A Tutorial Introduction to GNU Emacs

What GNU Emacs Is

GNU Emacs is a free, portable, extensible text editor. That it is free means specifically that the source code is freely copyable and redistributable. That it is portable means that it runs on many machines under many different operating systems, so that you can probably count on being able to use the same editor no matter what machine you're using. That it is extensible means that you can not only customize all aspects of its usage (from key bindings through fonts, colors, windows, mousage and menus), but you can program Emacs to do entirely new things that its designers never thought of.

Because of all this, Emacs is an extremely successful program, and does more for you than any other editor. It's particularly good for programmers. If you use a common programming language, Emacs probably provides a mode that makes it especially easy to edit code in that language, providing context sensitive indentation and layout. It also probably allows you to compile your programs inside Emacs, with links from error messages to source code; debug your programs inside Emacs, with links to the source; interact directly with the language interpretor (where appropriate); manage change logs; jump directly to a location in the source by symbol (function or variable name); and interact with your revision control system.

The tutorial for Emacs is available at this link.

Recipe: Frosty Strawberry Pops

Prep Time: 15 min
Total Time: 4 hr 15 min
Makes: 6 servings, one pop each

1 qt. ripe strawberries , rinsed
1/3 cup KOOL-AID Tropical Punch Flavor Sugar-Sweetened Soft Drink Mix

REMOVE tops from strawberries by pinching and twisting each top between two fingers. (Or, use a table knife to remove stems.) or using a table knife. Measure the soft drink mix using a dry measuring cup, leveling it with a straight-edged table knife.
PLACE strawberries and drink mix in blender; cover. Blend on low speed 2 min. or until smooth. Pour evenly into six 5-oz. paper or plastic cups. Freeze 1 hour.
INSERT wooden pop stick into center of each cup. Freeze an additional 3 hours or until pops are firm. Remove from freezer a few minutes before serving; let stand at room temperature to soften slightly. Peel off paper cups just before serving.

Recipe: Super Fruity Kool Kubes

Prep Time: 5 min
Total Time: 5 hr 5 min
Makes: About 14 servings, 2 cubes each

1/2 cup KOOL-AID Sugar-Sweetened Soft Drink Mix , any flavor
1-1/2 cups water

MIX soft drink mix powder and water in glass measuring cup; stir until drink mix is dissolved. Pour evenly into plastic ice cube trays lightly sprayed with cooking spray.
FREEZE 3 to 5 hours or until firm. Remove from ice cube trays onto plate or plastic tray.


Once upon a time, in Medieval England, a provincial baron’s castle was under siege from a neighboring, rival baron. Day and night, the attackers launched catapulted fireballs of burning pitch, yeomen launched flight after flight of deadly arrows at the ramparts of the castle.

Little by little, the resources of the villagers huddled in the castle were dwindling away; almost no water, no wheat to make bread, no meat at all. Finally, the “mayor” of the peasants went to the baron and begged him to send for help.

The baron, sensing that if he didn't do something soon, the peasants under his care would revolt and he would no longer be able to expect him to work his far-flung estate lands. So, the baron sent a knight on horseback to the nearest province to ask another baron for help in repelling the attackers.

As it happened, the attacking baron had constructed a huge, yellow hand and as soon as the knight left the castle to ride for help, the yellow hand immediately grasped the aid-seeking knight and crushed him, armor and all, into a small ball and was immediately flung back over the castle walls.

Undaunted, the poor baron in the castle sent out several more brave knights but each was captured and crushed by that giant yellow hand and again, one-by-one, flung back over the castle wall in a small ball.

Finally, the baron’s court magician, Marvin (Merlin’s cousin, since Merlin was busy elsewhere), provided a solution to the problem. He advised the baron, “That yellow hand is formidable, Your Excellency, you should send out your lowliest court page to seek help.”

“But how will that help? My pages carry no armament, and most of them do not know how to ride a steed, “ whined the baron.

“Sire,” replied Marvin, “haven't you heard that you should let your pages do the walking through the yellow fingers?”

Famous Quotes

Famous Quote #1
People are just about as happy as they make up their minds to be.
Abraham Lincoln
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Famous Quote #2
Everyone has problems, some are just better at hiding them.
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Famous Quote #3
If we did all the things that we are capable of doing, we would literally astound ourselves.
Thomas Edison
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Famous Quote #4
Life is 10% what happens to us and 90% how we react to it.
Dennis P. Kimbro
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Famous Quote #5
Sometimes your joy is the source of your smile, but sometimes your smile can be the source of your joy.
Thich Nhat Hahn
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Famous Quote #6
Life is not lost by dying; life is lost minute by minute, day by dragging day, in all the thousand small uncaring ways.
Stephen Vincent Ben€ ¦├ęt
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Famous Quote #7
Only by going too far can one possibly find out how far one can go.
Jon dyer
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Famous Quote #8
People only see what they are prepared to see.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
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Famous Quote #9
Don't be afraid to fail because only through failure do you learn to succeed.
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Famous Quote #10
It's true that we don't know what we've got until we lose it, but it's also true that we don't know what we've been missing until it arrives.
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Famous Quote #11
Learn from the mistakes of others.
You can't live long enough to make them all yourself
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Famous Quote #12
The tongue weighs practically nothing,
But so few people can hold it.
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Famous Quote #13
It takes only a minute to get a crush on someone, an hour to like someone, and a day to love someone- but it takes a lifetime to forget someone.
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Famous Quote #14
Always put yourself in the other's shoes. If you feel that it hurts you, it probably hurts the person too.
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Famous Quote #15
The happiest of people don't necessarily have the best of everything they just make the most of everything that comes along their way.
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Famous Quote #16
Many people will walk in and out or your life,
But only true friends will leave footprints in your heart
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Famous Quote #17
To handle yourself, use your head, To handle others, use your heart.
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Famous Quote #18
He who loses money, loses much; He who loses a friend, loses more; He who loses faith, loses all.
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Famous Quote #19
If someone betrays you once, it's his fault.
If he betrays you twice, it's your fault.
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Famous Quote #20
God Gives every bird it's food,
But he does not throw it into it's nest.

Recipe: Fruity Pudding Pops

Prep Time: 10 min

Total Time: 4 hr 10 min

Makes: 5 servings, 1 pop each

1 pkg. (4-serving size) JELL-O Vanilla Flavor Instant Pudding & Pie Filling
1/4 cup KOOL-AID Strawberry Flavor Sugar-Sweetened Soft Drink Mix
2 cups cold fat-free milk
1 cup sliced strawberries
5 paper or plastic cups (5 or 6 oz.)
5 wooden pop sticks

COMBINE dry pudding mix and soft drink in medium bowl. Add milk. Beat with wire whisk 2 min. or until well blended. Gently stir in strawberries.
POUR evenly into paper cups. Insert pop stick into center of each cup.
FREEZE 4 hours or until firm. Peel off paper cups just before serving.


1. A couple drove down a country road for several miles,

Not saying a word. An earlier discussion had led to an argument and neither of them wanted to concede their position.

As they passed a barnyard of mules, goats, and pigs, the husband asked sarcastically, "Relatives of yours?"

"Yep ," the wife replied, "In-laws."

2. A man and his wife were having an argument about who should brew the coffee
each morning.

The wife said, "You should do it, because you get up first, and then we
don't have to wait as long to get our coffee."

The husband said, " You are in charge of cooking around here and you should
do it, because that is your job, and I can just wait for my coffee."

Wife replies, "No, you should do it, and besides, it is in the Bible that
the man should do the coffee."

Husband replies, "I can't believe that, show me."

So she fetched the Bible, and opened the New Testament and showed him at the
top of several pages,

That it indeed says........ .. "HEBREWS"

3. Back a few years ago, I went over to my neighbors house.(She was a blonde),
and for some reason she was mad at the world. She had locked herself in the
bathroom and was threatening suicide.

I said, "Come on, you know you don't want to do this!"

She said, "I damn well do wanna do this, nobody wants me alive anyways."

For some reason I actually believed her and pushed through the door, and saw
she had a rope tied to around her ankles.

I asked "Are you really trying to hang yourself?"

"Yeah, so what?"

"Well, usually when people hang themselves they tie the rope around their

"Yeah, well, I tried that, but then I couldn't breathe."


1. "Can you explain to me how this lipstick got on your collar?" the, suspicious wife sneered.

"No, I can't," the husband replied. "I distinctly remember taking off my shirt."

2. I can't say I've ever gotten a shave from a barber, but I've seen others who have. I was in a shop once, and an obviously new barber nicked a customer several times while giving him a shave.

The new man, in an effort to smooth things over asked solicitously, "Do you want your head wrapped in a hot towel?"

"No thanks." said the customer. "I'll carry it home under my arm."

3. Three young women are at a cocktail party.

The conversation turns to their position in life, and it's clear that they're trying to one-up each other.

The first one says, "My husband is taking me to the French Riviera for two weeks on vacation," and then looks at the others with a superior demeanor.

The second one says, "Well, my husband just bought me a new Mercedes," and looks about with considerable pride.

Young woman number three says, "Well, to be perfectly honest with you, we don't have much money and we don't have many material possessions. However, one thing I can tell you about my husband is that fourteen canaries can stand shoulder to shoulder on his erect thing."

After this, the first one looks shamefaced and says, "Girls, I've got a confession to make: I was just trying to impress you. You know that vacation I was telling you about? Well, it's not to the French Riviera, it's to my folks' house in Terre Haute for two weeks." The second one says, "Your honesty has shamed me. It's not a Mercedes; it's a Plymouth."

"Well, I've got a confession to make myself: Canary number fourteen has to stand on one leg."

3. One Sunday morning William burst into the living room and said, "Dad! Mom! I have some great news for you! I am getting married to the most beautiful girl in town. She lives a block away and her name is Susan.

After dinner, William's dad took him aside. "Son, I have to talk with you. Your mother and I have been married 30 years. She's a wonderful wife but she has never offered much excitement in the bedroom, so I used to fool around with women a lot. Susan is actually your half-sister, and I'm afraid you can't marry her."

William was heart-broken. After eight months he eventually started dating girls again. A year later he came home and very proudly announced, "Diane said yes! We're getting married in June."

Again his father insisted on another private conversation and broke the sad news. "Diane is your half-sister too, William. I'm awfully sorry about this."

William was furious! He finally decided to go to his mother with the news. "Dad has done so much harm. I guess I'm never going to get married, " he complained. "Every time I fall in love, Dad tells me the girl is my half-sister."

His mother just shook her head. "Don't pay any attention to what he
says, dear. He's not really your father."

4. Jim and Roger were patients in a Mental hospital.

One day while they were walking past the hospital swimming pool, Jim suddenly jumped in to the deep end.

He sunk to the bottom and stayed there.

Roger promptly jumped in to save him.

He swam to the bottom and pulled Jim out.

When the medical director became aware of Rogers heroic act he immediately ordered him to be discharged from the hospital, considered him to be mentally stable.

When he went to tell Roger the news he said, "Roger, I have good news and bad news.
The good news is you're being discharged because since you were able to jump in and save the life of another patient, I think you've regained your senses.

The bad news is Jim, the patient you saved, hung himself with his bathrobe belt in the bathroom. I am so sorry, but he's dead." Roger replied, "He didn't hang himself, I put him there to dry."

iText Sharp

PDF is the file format of choice whenever a document must preserve its structure and layout. A leading tool for programmatic creation and manipulation of PDF documents, iText is an open source Java library developed and maintained by Bruno Lowagie, the author of this book, with the help of many contributors.
iText# (iTextSharp) is a port of the iText open source java library written entirely in C# for the .NET platform. iText# is a library that allows you to generate PDF files on the fly. It is implemented as an assembly.
More details about iTextSharp are available at this link.

If you want information about iText, refer to this link.
iText is an ideal library for developers looking to enhance web- and other applications with dynamic PDF document generation and/or manipulation. iText is not an end-user tool. Typically you won't use it on your Desktop as you would use Acrobat or any other PDF application. Rather, you'll build iText into your own applications so that you can automate the PDF creation and manipulation process. For instance in one or more of the following situations:

* Due to time or size, the PDF documents can't be produced manually.
* The content of the document must be calculated or based on user input.
* The content needs to be customized or personalized.
* The PDF content needs to be served in a web environment.
* Documents are to be created in "batch process" mode.

You can use iText to:

* Serve PDF to a browser
* Generate dynamic documents from XML files or databases
* Use PDF's many interactive features
* Add bookmarks, page numbers, watermarks, etc.
* Split, concatenate, and manipulate PDF pages
* Automate filling out of PDF forms
* Add digital signatures to a PDF file
* And much more...

The internet turns 38

The Internet Turns 38

Researchers at the University of California, Los Angeles are celebrating the anniversary of the first message sent over what would eventually become the internet. In the 1960s, computer scientists at American universities and in the U.S. Department of Defence devised a plan for a network of computers that could all communicate with each other.

After the hardware was put in place, researchers at UCLA attempted on Oct. 29, 1969, to log in to a computer at the Stanford Research Institute in Menlo Park, California.

Leonard Kleinrock

In an interview on CBC Newsworld, Prof. Leonard Kleinrock admitted researchers weren't exactly prepared for the history-making moment. "[The message] wasn't anything like 'What hath God wrought?' or 'Come here, Watson. I want you,' or 'a giant leap for mankind.' We weren't that smart," he said, referring to the first messages over telegraph, over telephone and from the surface of the moon.
In order to log in to the two-computer network, which was then called ARPANET, programmers at UCLA were to type in "log," and Stanford would reply "in."

<> The UCLA programmers only got as far as "lo" before the Stanford machine crashed.
But Kleinrock put a tongue-in-cheek positive spin on the less-than-momentous message."The first message on the internet was 'Lo!' What better prophetic message could you ask for?" he said.The two computers wouldn't successfully link up until Nov. 21, 1969, but those two letters are considered the first message transmitted over the fledgling network. ARPANET would grow to include more computers at universities and military bases across the U.S., before expanding into today's internet, which connects millions of computers worldwide.

Kleinrock said he predicted in 1969 that the small network would eventually expand across the globe, making a vast amount of information accessible at any time from anywhere in the world.
"The part I missed... was that my 97-year-old mother would be on the internet today," he said.

Facts about Earth

1. What is the hottest place on Earth?
Count one wrong if you guessed Death Valley in California. True enough on many days. But El Azizia in Libya recorded a temperature of 136 degrees Fahrenheit (57.8 Celsius) on Sept. 13, 1922 -- the hottest ever measured. In Death Valley, it got up to 134 Fahrenheit on July 10, 1913.

2. And the coldest place around here?
Far and away, the coldest temperature ever measured on Earth was -129 Fahrenheit (-89 Celsius) at Vostok, Antarctica, on July 21, 1983.

3. What makes thunder?
If you thought, "Lightning!" then hats off to you. But I had a more illuminating answer in mind. The air around a lightning bolt is superheated to about five times the temperature of the Sun. This sudden heating causes the air to expand faster than the speed of sound, which compresses the air and forms a shock wave; we hear it as thunder.

4. Can rocks float?
In a volcanic eruption, the violent separation of gas from lava produces a "frothy" rock called pumice, loaded with gas bubbles. Some of it can float, geologists say. I've never seen this happen, and I'm thankful for that.

5. Can rocks grow?
Yes, but observing the process is less interesting than watching paint dry. Rocks called iron-manganese crusts grow on mountains under the sea. The crusts precipitate material slowly from seawater, growing about 1 millimeter every million years. Your fingernails grow about the same amount every two weeks.

6. How much space dust falls to Earth each year?
Estimates vary, but the USGS says at least 1,000 million grams, or roughly 1,000 tons of material enters the atmosphere every year and makes its way to Earths surface. One group of scientists claims microbes rain down from space, too, and that extraterrestrial organisms are responsible for flu epidemics. There's been no proof of this, and I'm not holding my breath.

7. How far does regular dust blow in the wind?
A 1999 study showed that African dust finds its way to Florida and can help push parts of the state over the prescribed air quality limit for particulate matter set by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The dust is kicked up by high winds in North Africa and carried as high as 20,000 feet (6,100 meters), where it's caught up in the trade winds and carried across the sea. Dust from China makes its way to North America, too.

8. Where is the worlds highest waterfall?
The water of Angel Falls in Venezuela drops 3,212 feet (979 meters).

9. What two great American cities are destined to merge?
The San Andreas fault, which runs north-south, is slipping at a rate of about 2 inches (5 centimeters) per year, causing Los Angeles to move towards San Francisco. Scientists forecast LA will be a suburb of the City by the Bay in about 15 million years.

10. Is Earth a sphere?
Because the planet rotates and is more flexible than you might imagine, it bulges at the midsection, creating a sort of pumpkin shape. The bulge was lessening for centuries but now, suddenly, it is growing, a recent study showed. Accelerated melting of Earth's glaciers is taking the blame for the gain in equatorial girth.

11. What would a 100-pound person weigh on Mars?
The gravity on Mars is 38 percent of that found on Earth at sea level. So a 100-pound person on Earth would weigh 38 pounds on Mars. Based on NASA's present plans, it'll be decades before this assumption can be observationally proved, however.

12. How long is a Martian year?
It's a year long, if you're from Mars. To an earthling, it's nearly twice as long. The red planet takes 687 Earth-days to go around the Sun -- compared to 365 days for Earth. Taking into account Mars' different rotational time (see #13 below) calendars on Mars would be about 670 days long with some leap days needed to keep things square. If you find one, please mail it to me. I'm curious how they worked out the months, given they have two moons.

13. How long is the average Martian day?
A Martian can sleep (or work) and extra half-hour every day compared to you. Mars days are 24 hours and 37 minutes long, compared to 23 hours, 56 minutes on Earth. A day on any planet in our solar system is determined by how long it takes the world to spin once on its axis, making the Sun appear to rise in the morning and sending it down in the evening.

14. What is the largest volcano?
The Mauna Loa volcano in Hawaii holds the title here on Earth. It rises more than 50,000 feet (9.5 miles or 15.2 kilometers) above its base, which sits under the surface of the sea. But that's all volcanic chump change. Olympus Mons on Mars rises 16 miles (26 kilometers) into the Martian sky. Its base would almost cover the entire state of Arizona.

15. What was the deadliest known earthquake?
The world's deadliest recorded earthquake occurred in 1557 in central China. It struck a region where most people lived in caves carved from soft rock. The dwellings collapsed, killing an estimated 830,000 people. In 1976 another deadly temblor struck Tangshan, China. More than 250,000 people were killed.

16. What was the strongest earthquake in recent times?
A 1960 Chilean earthquake, which occurred off the coast, had a magnitude of 9.6 and broke a fault more than 1,000 miles (1,600 kilometers) long. An earthquake like that under a major city would challenge the best construction techniques.

17. Which earthquake was more catastrophic: Kobe, Japan or Northridge, California?
The 1994 Northridge earthquake had a magnitude of 6.7 was responsible for approximately 60 deaths, 9,000 injuries, and more than $40 billion in damage. The Kobe earthquake of 1995 was magnitude 6.8 and killed 5,530 people. There were some 37,000 injuries and more than $100 billion in economic loss.

18. How far is it to the center of the Earth?
The distance from the surface of Earth to the center is about 3,963 miles (6,378 kilometers). Much of Earth is fluid. The mostly solid skin of the planet is only 41 miles (66 kilometers) thick -- thinner than the skin of an apple, relatively

19. What is the highest mountain?
Climbers who brave Mt. Everest in the Nepal-Tibet section of the Himalayas reach 29,035 feet (nearly 9 kilometers) above sea level. Its height was revised upward by 7 feet based on measurements made in 1999 using the satellite-based Global Positioning System.

20. Has the Moon always been so close?
It used to be much closer! A billion years ago, the Moon was in a tighter orbit, taking just 20 days to go around us and make a month. A day on Earth back then was only 18 hours long. The Moon is still moving away -- about 1.6 inches (4 centimeters) a year. Meanwhile, Earth's rotation is slowing down, lengthening our days. In the distant future, a day will be 960 hours long!

21. Where is the lowest dry point on Earth?
The shore of the Dead Sea in the Middle East is about 1,300 feet (400 meters) below sea level. Not even a close second is Bad Water in Death Valley, California, at a mere 282 feet below sea level.

22. Good thing California isn't sinking further, right?
Actually parts of it are. In a problem repeated elsewhere in the country, the pumping of natural underground water reservoirs in California is causing the ground to sink up to 4 inches (11 centimeters) per year in places. Water and sewage systems may soon be threatened.

23. What is the longest river?
The Nile River in Africa is 4,160 miles (6,695 kilometers) long.

24. What is the most earthquake-prone state in the United States?
Alaska experiences a magnitude 7 earthquake almost every year, and a magnitude 8 or greater earthquake on average every 14 years. Florida and North Dakota get the fewest earthquakes in the states, even fewer than New York.

25. What's the driest place on Earth?
A place called Arica, in Chile, gets just 0.03 inches (0.76 millimeters) of rain per year. At that rate, it would take a century to fill a coffee cup.

26. What causes a landslide?
Intense rainfall over a short period of time can trigger shallow, fast-moving mud and debris flows. Slow, steady rainfall over a long period of time may trigger deeper, slow-moving landslides. Different materials behave differently, too. Every year as much as $2 billion in landslide damage occurs in the United States. In a record-breaking storm in the San Francisco area in January 1982, some 18,000 debris flows were triggered during a single night! Property damage was over $66 million, and 25 people died.

27. How fast can mud flow?
Debris flows are like mud avalanches that can move at speeds in excess of 100 mph (160 kph).

28. Do things inside Earth flow?
You bet. In fact, scientists found in 1999 that molten material in and around Earth's core moves in vortices, swirling pockets whose dynamics are similar to tornadoes and hurricanes. And as you'll learn later in this list, the planet's core moves in other strange ways, too.

29. What is the wettest place on Earth?
Lloro, Colombia averages 523.6 inches of rainfall a year, or more than 40 feet (13 meters). That's about 10 times more than fairly wet major cities in Europe or the United States.

30. Does Earth go through phases, like the Moon?
From Mars, Earth would be seen to go through distinct phases (just as we see Venus change phases). Earth is inside the orbit of Mars, and as the two planets travel around the Sun, sunlight would strike our home planet from different angles during the year. Earth phases can be seen in recent photographs taken by Mars Global Surveyor and the European Mars Express

Eight very unusual plants

Weird is relative. What seems weird to me might not seem weird to you. In the plant kingdom, however, there are definitely some species that most people would acknowledge are highly unusual. In the wack spirit of Halloween, some of my findings follow.

1. Rafflesia arnoldii: this parasitic plant develops the world's largest bloom that can grow over three feet across. The flower is a fleshy color, with spots that make it look like a teenager's acne-ridden skin. It smells bad and has a hole in the center that holds six or seven quarts of water. The plant has no leaves, stems, or roots.


2. Hydnora africana, an unusual flesh-colored, parasitic flower that attacks the nearby roots of shrubby in arid deserts of South Africa. The putrid-smelling blossom attracts herds of carrion beetles.


3. Dracunculus vulgaris: smells like rotting flesh, and has a burgundy-colored, leaf-like flower that projects a slender, black appendage.


4. Amorphophallus: means, literally, "shapeless penis." The name comes from the shape of the erect black spadix.

Weird is relative. What seems weird to me might not seem weird to you. In the plant kingdom, however, there are definitely some species that most people would acknowledge are highly unusual. In the wack spirit of Halloween, some of my findings follow.

5. Wollemia nobilis: This bizarre-looking tree was known only from 120 million-year-old fossil leaves before 1994; fewer than one hundred exist in the wild. They have strange bark that looks like bubbles of chocolate, multiple trunks, and ferny-looking leaves growing in spirals. They can grow up to 125 feet tall.


6. Welwitschia mirabilis consists of only two leaves and a stem with roots. Its two leaves continue to grow until they resemble an alien life form. The stem gets thicker rather than higher, although this plant can grow to be almost six feet high and twenty-four feet wide. Its estimated lifespan is 400 to 1500 years. Mirabilis grows in Namibia, and is thought to be a relic of the Jurassic period.


7. Drakaea glyptodon: an orchid. It is the color of, and smells like, raw meat. Pollinated by male wasps.


8. Wolffia angusta: the world's smallest flower. A dozen plants would easily fit on the head of a pin and two plants in full bloom will fit inside a small printed letter "o."


1. George, Bob and Fred are working on a very high scaffolding.

Suddenly, George falls off and is killed instantly.

After the ambulance leaves with George's body, Bob and Fred realize they'll have to inform his wife.

Bob says he's good at this sort of sensitive stuff, so he volunteers to do the job.

After two hours he returns.

"So did you tell her?" asks Fred. "Yep", replies Bob.

"Any difficulty?"

"None at all. In fact I ended up with this six pack."

"How come?" "She gave it to me."

"WHAT??" exclaims Fred, "you just told her, her husband died and she gave you a six- pack??"

"Sure," Bob says. "WHY?" asks Fred.

"Well," Bob continues, "when she answered the door, I asked her, 'are you George's widow?'

'Widow?', she said, 'no, no, you're mistaken, I'm not a widow!'

So I said: "I'll bet you a six-pack you ARE!'"

"After all that money your father and I spent on braces, that's the
biggest smile you can give us?"

"I don't care what you've discovered, you still could have written!"

"Can't you paint on walls like other children? Do you have any idea
how hard it is to get that junk off the ceiling?"

"All right, if you aren't hiding your report card inside your jacket,
take your hand out of there and show me."

"Again with the hat? Can't you just wear a baseball cap like the
other kids?"

"The next time I catch you throwing money across the Potomac, you can
kiss your allowance good-bye!"

"Of course I'm proud that you invented the electric light bulb. Now
turn it off and get to bed!"

"I don't care where you think you have to go, young man, midnight is
past your curfew."

And, of course, these two, who really did have Jewish mothers:

"But it's your senior picture. Couldn't you do something about your

"That's a nice story. Now tell me where you've really been for the
last forty years."


1. His new girlfriend demanded that she wanted to live in the couple's multi-million dollar home. He gave his now ex-wife just 3 days to move out.

She spent the first day packing her belongings into boxes, crates, and suitcases. On the second day, she had the movers come and collect her things. On the third day, she sat down for the last time at their beautiful dining room table by candlelight, put on some soft background music, and feasted on a pound of shrimp, a jar of caviar, and a bottle of Chardonnay.

When she had finished, she went into each and every room and deposited a few half-eaten shrimp shells, dipped in caviar into the hollow of the curtain rods. She then cleaned up the kitchen and left.

When the husband returned with the new girlfriend, all was bliss for the first few days. Then slowly, the house began to smell. They tried everything; cleaning & mopping, and airing the place out. Vents were checked for dead rodents, and carpets were steam cleaned. Air fresheners were hung everywhere.

Exterminators were brought in to set off gas canisters, during which they had to move out for a few days. And in the end they even paid to replace the expensive wool carpeting.

Nothing worked. People stopped coming over to visit. Repairmen refused to work in the house. The maid quit. Finally, they could not take the stench any longer and decided to move.

A month later, even though they had cut their price in half, they could not find a buyer for their stinky house. Word got out, and eventually even the local realtors refused to return their calls. Finally, they had to borrow a huge sum of money from the bank to purchase a new place.

The ex-wife called the man, and asked how things were going. He told her the saga of not selling the house. She listened politely, and said that she missed her old home terribly, and would be willing to reduce her divorce settlement in exchange for getting the house back.

Knowing that his ex-wife had no idea how bad the smell was, he agreed on a price that was about 1/10 of what the house had been worth, but only if she were to sign the papers that very day. She agreed, and within the hour, his lawyers delivered the paperwork.

A week later, the man and his new girlfriend stood smirking as they watched the moving company pack everything to take to their new home....... including the curtain rods.

2. A boy had reached four without giving up the habit of suckling his thumb, though his mother had tried everything from bribery, to reasoning, to painting it with lemon juice to discourage the habit. Finally she tried threats, warning her son that, "If you don't stop sucking your thumb, your stomach is going to blow up like a balloon."

Later that day, walking in the park, mother and son saw a pregnant woman sitting on a bench. The four-year-old considered her gravely for a minute, then spoke to her saying, "Uh-oh... I know what you've been doing."

3. Men vs. Women


If Laurie, Linda, Elizabeth and Barbara go out for lunch, they will call each other Laurie, Linda, Elizabeth and Barbara.

If Mark, Chris, Eric and Tom go out, they will affectionately refer to each other as Fat Boy, Godzilla, Peanut-Head and Scrappy.

Paying The Bill:

When the bill arrives, Mark, Chris, Eric and Tom will each throw in $20, even though it's only for $32.50. None of them will have anything smaller and none will actually admit they want change back.

When the girls get their bill, out comes the pocket calculators.


A man will pay $2 for a $1 item he needs.

A woman will pay $1 for a $2 item that she doesn't need, but it's on sale.


A man has five items in his bathroom: a toothbrush, shaving cream, razor, a bar of soap, and a towel from the Marriott.

The average number of items in the typical woman's bathroom is 337. A man would not be able to identify most of these items.


A woman has the last word in any argument.

Anything a man says after that is the beginning of a new argument.


Women love cats.

Men say they love cats, but when women aren't looking, men kick cats.

The Future:

A woman worries about the future until she gets a husband.

A man never worries about the future until he gets a wife.


A successful man is one who makes more money than his wife can spend.

A successful woman is one who can find such a man.


A woman marries a man expecting he will change, but he doesn't.

A man marries a woman expecting that she won't change, and she does.

Dressing Up:

A woman will dress up to go shopping, water the plants, empty the garbage, answer the phone, read a book, and get the mail.

A man will dress up for weddings and funerals.


Men wake up as good-looking as they went to bed.

Women somehow deteriorate during the night.


A woman knows all about her children. She knows about dentist appointments, romances, best friends, favorite foods, secret fears, hopes and dreams.

A man is vaguely aware of some short people living in the house.


1. A disappointed salesman of Coca Cola returns from his Middle East assignment.

A friend asked, "Why weren't you successful with the Arabs?"

The salesman explained, "When I got posted in the Middle East, I was very confident that I will makes a good sales pitch as Cola is virtually unknown there. But, I had a problem I didn't know to speak Arabic. So, I planned to convey the message through 3 posters...

First poster, a man crawling through the hot desert sand... Totally exhausted and panting. Second poster, the man is drinking our Cola and Third, our man is now totally refreshed. Then these posters were pasted all over the place"

"That should have worked," said the friend.

The salesman replied, " Well, not only did I not speak Arabic, I also didn't realise that Arabs Read from Right to Left..."

2. A young ventriloquist is touring the clubs and one night he's doing a show in a
small town in Arkansas. With his dummy on his knee, he starts going through his
usual dumb blonde jokes when a blonde woman in the 4th row stands on her chair
and starts shouting: "I've heard enough of your stupid blonde jokes.
What makes you think you can stereotype women that way? What does the color of a
person's hair have to do with her worth as a human being? It's guys like you who
keep women like me from being respected at work and in the community and from
reaching our full potential as a person.
Because you and your kind continue to perpetuate discrimination against not only
blondes, but women in general and all in the name of humor!"
The embarrassed ventriloquist begins to apologize, and the blonde yells, "You stay out of this, mister! I'm talking to that little guy on your knee."

3. Like a lot of husbands throughout history, Webster would sit down and try to talk to his wife. But as soon as he would start to say something, his wife would say, "And what's that supposed to mean?"

Thus, Webster's Dictionary was born.

4. Doug brought Tammy back to his apartment, took off his clothes, and said, "I'd like you to meet my little friend."

Tammy took a look, gathered up her clothes, then said, "Call me when it grows up."

5. Our Lamaze class included a tour of the pediatric wing of the hospital. When a new baby was brought into the nursery, all the women tried to guess its weight, but the guy standing next to me was the only male to venture a number.

"Looks like 9 pounds," he offered confidently.

"This must not be your first," I said.

"Oh, yes," he said. "It's my first."

"Then how would you know the weight of a baby?" I asked.

He shrugged. "I'm a fisherman."


1. A mother of twelve was asked, "What is the worst thing you could get on your twenty-fifth wedding anniversary?"

"Morning sickness," she replied.

2. A couple with three children waited in line at San Francisco's Pier 41 to purchase tickets for a boat trip to Alcatraz.

Others watched with varying degrees of sympathy and irritation as the young children fidgeted, whined, and punched one another.

The frazzled parents reprimanded them to no avail.

Finally they reached the ticket window. "Five tickets, please," the father said. "Two round trip, three one way."

3. The judge read the charges, then asked, "Are you the defendant in this case?"

"No sir, your honor, sir," replied Bob, "I've got a lawyer to do the defendin'.

I'm the guy who done it."

4. Three sons of a Jewish Mother left their homeland, went abroad and prospered.

They discussed the gifts they were able to give their old mother.

AVRAHAM, the first, said: "I built a big house for our mother."

MOISHE, the second, said: "I sent her a Mercedes with a driver."

DAVID, the youngest, said: "You remember how our mother enjoys reading the good book. Now she can't see very well. I sent her a remarkable rare priceless parrot that recites the whole book in yiddish -- Mama just has to name the chapter and verse, and
he does it perfectly."

Soon thereafter, a letter of thanks came from their mother.

"AVRAHAM", she said, the house you built is so huge. I can live only in one room, but I have to clean the whole house".

"MOISHE", she said, "I am too old to travel. I stay most of the time at home so I rarely use the Mercedes. And that driver is always complaining -- he's a pain in the tuchas".


5. A fellow in a bar notices a woman, always alone, come in on a fairly regular basis.

After the second week, he made his move.

"No thank you." she said politely. "This may sound rather odd in this day and age, but I'm keeping myself pure until I meet the man I love."

"That must be rather difficult." the man replied.

"Oh, I don't mind too much." she said. "But, it has my husband pretty upset."

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

Points for small investors - How retail investors lose money

How retail investors lose money

The reason is simple - a retail investor is driven by greed or fear. Never logic.
• Retail investors are always the last to enter a bull run
• "Smart money" enters markets long time back when markets are at its bottoms, there is frustration all around and no one wants to discuss markets
• When markets start booming and indices make new peaks, the retail investor "wakes" up. At this stage, he is still not sure and is a fence sitter.
• Lastly, there is optimism all around. Every one is bullish and talking markets. Stocks which were never traded in a year, suddenly start moving and start reaching "new highs"
• At this time, the retail investor starts buying as he does not want to miss out the "action"
• The retail investor will display a marked preference for "low priced" stocks because these are "cheap". He will stay clear of index stocks as these are "expensive"
• This is also the time when "smart money" starts moving out
• When a correction happens, it is usually quite severe
• The retail investor does one of two things. He either decides to wait (the optimism is still there) or he starts "averaging" his costs. Averaging is nothing but trying to " catch a falling knife"
• At some time or the other, panic sets in. The retail investor will then sell off all holdings as a distress sale.
• Sometimes the retail investor will do nothing but wait for the markets to rise
• When the markets do rise, he will sell off all his holdings at the first available opportunity and thus miss out on the new bull run

Other facts
• In a bull run, the retail investor is usually the first to sell off his holding. This investor seldom waits for the bull run to continue
• Those who have never participated when the rally started will invariably jump in towards the end of the bull run
• Retail investors rarely follow stoplosses. Circumstances eventually force them to take a bigger loss
• Lastly, retail investors spend an insignificant amount of time researching an investment as compared to buying a mobile or fridge.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

13 Creative Uses for Cereal Bag Liners

13 Creative Uses for Cereal Bag Liners

If your family eats boxed dry cereals do you just toss out those plastic bags when the box is empty? Before you throw out another plastic cereal liner bag, consider saving them to reuse. Here are a few creative ways you can recycle the bags...

1. Microwave hot dogs and sandwiches inside bag.

2. Open the cereal liner and use to cover a dish to prevent splatters while microwaving. Do NOT try this in the oven.

3. Use an open cereal liner to place homemade chocolate-covered candies and pretzels on to harden and cool. After the candy cools, just toss the liner for easy cleanup

4. Place no-bake cookies on an open liner to cool.

5. Fill an unopened bag with crackers or nuts and crush with a rolling pin.

6. Fill an unopened bag with seasoned bread or cracker crumbs. Use this to shake and bake meats such as fish or chicken or even vegetables.

7. Fill an unopened bag with quartered potatoes. Drizzle olive oil and dump in a packet of onion soup mix or other seasonings. Shake to coat. Place in a crockpot or in the oven to bake.

8. Place sandwiches or other foods in the bag for your lunch instead of using sandwich bags.

9. Open and use the bag when rolling out pie dough to prevent it from sticking to the counter top. Moisten the counter top before placing the liner on it to keep it from slipping. Sprinkle flour on the cereal bag and then put your dough on the liner.

10. Use an opened bag for rolling out cookie dough to keep your counter top from getting messy.

11. Use to separate hamburgers, cheese, or other meats when freezing.

12. Use when pushing down rice krispy treats in a pan to keep the marshmallow mixture from sticking to your hands.

13. If you are planning to take the cooled rice krispy treats to a picnic or party, use the cereal liner to keep the treats from sticking to each other and to make for easy removal of the treats. Cut the liner just slightly smaller than the container you're using. Place cut liners in the container between each layer of treats. No more clumps of stuck-together rice krispy treats!

You can use cereal liners in place of wax paper in many ways (except do not try ironing or pressing leaves between cereal liners).

Recipe: Egg McMuffins

Recipe: Egg McMuffins

Equipment needed:
- A small microwave-safe cereal bowl with a fairly small bottom and deep sides.
- A toaster
- A microwave oven

- 1 Thomas Light (or 100 calorie) Whole Grain English Muffin
- 1 slice of Canadian bacon
- 1/4 cup Egg Beaters
- 1 slice fat free cheese
- Cooking spray like Pam
- Zero calorie margarine spray

First, put your split English muffin in to toast. While that's going on, put the Canadian bacon on a small plate and microwave it for about 15 seconds.

Spray the bowl liberally with Pam. Shake the Egg Beaters well and measure 1/4 cup into the bowl. Put it in the microwave for 30 seconds on high level. Let it rest for a few seconds, then microwave it for another 30 seconds. Don't worry about the Egg Beaters coming up above the sides of the bowl. They'll go right back down when you take it out.

Now put the cheese slice in the bowl on top of the Egg Beaters. If the corners of the cheese extend beyond the egg, fold them in toward the center so the cheese doesn't run under the egg when it melts. Microwave for about 15 seconds. You want it to melt but not turn to liquid, so don't "nuke" the cheese for too long.

Take the English muffin out of the toaster and spray both halves with the margarine spray. This makes it taste really great and doesn't add any fat or calories.

Lay the Canadian bacon on the bottom half of the English muffin. Then slide the Egg Beaters out onto the bacon. It should be nice and round and fit just right. Then top with the other half of the muffin.

You're ready to eat, and it probably didn't take but about 5 minutes, depending on the speed of your toaster. If your mornings are hectic and you want to make these ahead, you can wrap them in wax paper and refrigerate them overnight, then warm them back up in the microwave the next morning. Don't wrap them in plastic wrap because they'll get sort of clammy when you microwave them.

If you need to make two at a time, you'll need a separate bowl for each one, and microwave the Egg Beaters for 45 seconds, 45 seconds, and 25 seconds.

Recipe: Rabadi


Milk thickened with freh bread crumbs to give you an instant rabdi.

Cooking Time : 15 mins.
Preparation Time : 10 mins.

Serves 4.


2 cups milk
2 bread slices
1/4 cup condensed milk
2 tablespoons sugar
1/4 teaspoons cardamom (elaichi) powder
a few saffron strands


1. Remove the crusts of the bread slices and discard. Grind the bread slices in food processor to make fresh bread crumbs. Keep aside.
2. Bring the milk to boil in a heavy bottomed pan. Add the fresh bread crumbs, condensed milk and sugar and cook on a high flame, while stirring continuously (approx. 10 minutes).
3. Remove from the fire, add the cardamom powder, saffron and mix well.
4. Refrigerate for 2 to 3 hours and serve chilled.


I must send my thanks to whomever sent me the one about rat poop in the glue on envelopes because I now have to use a wet towel with every envelope that needs sealing.

Also, I now have to scrub the top of every can I open for the same reason.

I am still waiting to receive the $15,000 that Bill Gates is sending me for participating in their special e-mail program.

I no longer worry about my soul because I have 363,214 angels Looking out for me.

I no longer eat KFC because the chickens they use are actually horrible mutant freaks with no eyes or feathers.

I no longer use cancer-causing deodorants even though I smell like a water buffalo on a hot day.

Thanks to numerous emails, I have learned that my prayers only get answered if I forward an email to seven of my friends within five minutes.

Because of your concern I no longer drink Coca Cola because it can remove toilet stains.

I no longer can buy gasoline without taking a man along to watch the car so a serial killer won't crawl in my back seat when I'm pumping gas.

And thanks for letting me know I can't boil a cup water in the microwave anymore, because it will blow up in my face... disfiguring me for life.

I will never check the coin return on pay phones because I could be pricked with a needle infected with AIDS.

I no longer go to shopping malls because someone will drug me with a perfume sample and rob me.

I no longer receive packages from UPS or FedEx since the delivery guys are actually Al Qaeda in disguise.

I no longer answer the phone because someone will hack into my phone line for which I will get a phone bill with calls to Jamaica, Uganda, Singapore, and Uzbekistan.

I can't use anyone's toilet but mine because a big brown African spider is lurking under the seat to cause me instant death when it bites my butt.

And thanks to all the great advice, I can't ever pick up the five-dollar bill I find in the parking lot because it probably was placed there by a predator waiting underneath a car to grab my leg.

If you don't send this e-mail to at least 100,000 people in the next 60 minutes, you will have 10 years of bad luck and go straight to hell when you die.

I know this because it actually happened to a friend of my next-door neighbor's ex-mother-in-law's second husband's cousin's beautician...


1. A lawyer goes in to the cell where his client is being held. "Okay, I've
some bad news, and some good news."

"Right, what's the bad news?"

"It's DEFINITELY your blood at the scene of the crime."

"So what's the good news?"

"Your cholesterol is way down!"

2. A couple lived near the ocean and used to walk the beach a lot. One summer they noticed a girl who was at the beach pretty much every day. She wasn't unusual, nor was the travel bag she carried, except for one thing; she would approach people who were sitting on the beach, glance around furtively, then speak to them.

Generally the people would respond negatively and she would wander off, but occasionally someone would nod and there would be a quick exchange of money and something she carried in her bag.

The couple assumed she was selling drugs, and debated calling the cops, but since they didn't know for sure they just continued to watch her. After a couple of weeks the wife said, "Honey, have you ever noticed that she only goes up to people with boom boxes and other electronic devices?"

He hadn't, and said so. Then she said, "Tomorrow I want you to get a towel and our big radio and go lie out on the beach. Then we can find out what she's really doing."

Well, the plan went off without a hitch and the wife was almost hopping up and down with anticipation when she saw the girl talk to her husband and then leave. The man walked up the beach and met his wife at the road.

Well, is she selling drugs?" she asked excitedly. "No, she's not," he said, enjoying this probably more than he should have. "Well, what is it, then? What does she do?" his wife fairly shrieked.

The man grinned and said, "Her name is Sally, and she's a battery salesperson". Batteries?" cried the wife. "Yes," he replied. She sells C cells by the seashore.

3. A man who just died is delivered to the mortuary wearing an expensive, expertly tailored black suit. The mortician asks the deceased's wife how she would like the body dressed. He points out that the man does look good in the black suit he is already wearing. The widow, however, says that she always thought her husband looked his best in blue, and that she wants him in a blue suit. She gives the mortician a blank check and says, "I don't care what it costs, but please have my husband in a blue suit for the viewing.

The woman returns the next day for the wake. To her delight, she finds her husband dressed in a gorgeous blue suit with a subtle chalk stripe; the suit fits him perfectly. She says to the mortician, "Whatever this cost, I'm very satisfied. You did an excellent job and I'm very grateful. How much did you spend?" To her astonishment, the mortician presents her with the blank check. He says, "There's no charge." "No, really, I must compensate you for the cost of that exquisite blue suit!" she says. "Honestly, ma'am," the mortician says, "It cost nothing". You see, a deceased gentleman of about your husband's size was brought in shortly after you left yesterday, and he was wearing an attractive blue suit. I asked his wife if
she minded him going to his grave wearing a black suit instead, and she said it made no difference as long as he looked nice. "So I switched the heads"

10 interview tips

The best way to avoid the most common and dangerous interview mistakes is to think ahead and decide not to make them... Read on for a whistle-stop tour of the top ten interview clangers!

1. Lying: Although it's tempting, it doesn't work. By all means gloss over the
unflattering things. But out-right fibbing NEVER pays.

Mark Twain said: "If you tell the truth, you never have to remember anything." Think about it. They will catch you out later.

2. Criticizing your current company or boss: Fed up with your current job and would give anything to leave because they've treated you badly? Your job interview is NOT the time to seek revenge. Bear in mind that the interviewer will be listening to your answers and thinking about what it would be like to work with you. Ask yourself: do
you like working with people who constantly criticise others? Isn't it a bit wearing? The trouble is that the interviewer draws massive conclusions from your answers. So your throwaway comment about your boss or employer may be interpreted to be your "standard" way of thinking. It makes you look bad, not your employer.

3. Being Rude: If you find you were accidentally rude, then apologise calmly and genuinely. Then leave it behind you and get on with the rest of the interview. If you
dwell on it, it will affect your performance. What's "rude"? Well, that depends on your audience. As a rule of thumb, avoid cracking jokes about potentially sensitive topics and beware of being too "pally" with the interviewer: polite and friendly is enough. After all, you're not in the pub with them. So stay professional. Also bear in mind that everyone you meet could be involved in the selection process. So blanking the receptionist or talking down to the junior members of staff could cost you the job.

4. Complaining: Ok, so your train journey might have been a nightmare and maybe you thought the tube would never arrive, or the tailbacks on the motorway were endless.
But your interviewer doesn't want to know that! Complaining, even in jest, is not a recommended icebreaker. It may be completely harmless, or it might simply make the interviewer switch off. Don't let complaining set the tone for the interview!

5. Talking about people you don't get on with at work: These days, it's common to be asked how you deal with conflict. Companies realise the importance of interpersonal relationships in the working environment. So if they ask you about difficult people or situations, make sure you hold back from character assassination and blaming others for problems because it won't do you any favours! If you accidentally do "break" this rule, apologise and explain what you "really" meant.

6. Not Being Prepared: Re-read the relevant version of your CV and the job advert, just before the interview. You'd be surprised how many people can't remember what they wrote on their CV. And if you remember what type of person the job advert was
looking for, it's easier to demonstrate that you have those qualities. Make sure you've brought with you anything you were asked for. It's fine to bring a note-pad and pen, but make sure they're tidy. It's even ok to bring notes with you; particularly if you have any questions you want to ask. It shows you're taking the job application seriously. Ill-prepared candidates rarely get job offers.

7. Appearing to be too nervous, or too confident: If you appear too nervous they'll think you're not confident enough to do the job. However, appearing too confident will make them think you won't fit into the team. If interview nerves are an issue for you, it's worth getting practical help from a professional, such as an interview coach.

8. Making a weak first impression: Unfortunately, no matter how hard the interviewer tries, a lot of "don't want to hire them" decisions are made in the first few minutes of contact. If you make a strong first impression, the interviewer will be more inclined to overlook "imperfections" in your answers.

9. Not having researched the company: As a general rule, the more famous the brand, the more they will expect you to have done your homework. Researching the company shows you're serious about the job.

Example from a real interview for a major food brand:
Candidate: "Hello Mr. Interviewer. Yes, I'd love to work for your company. I think your brand is great and I really believe I could make a contribution to your marketing strategy."

Interviewer: "So what do you think about our current merchandising, compared to our competition?"

Candidate: "Oh... Errr.... Well, I haven't had time to check it out, really."

Likelihood of getting the job? Low.

10. Putting your foot in it and not noticing: Yes, we know, you didn't mean to put your foot in it. But it doesn't really matter what you intended. What counts is how the other person reacts. So what can you do? Be prepared to simply say "sorry, that's not what I meant!" This requires you to actually be paying attention to the interviewer, rather than your own thoughts and feelings. Once you've apologised, leave it there, take a deep breath to help you relax and move on with the job interview.

Inspiring quotes

Some of the Inspiring Quotes which tell not to give up in life

1) Never expect things to happen.. struggle and make them happen. never expect yourself to be given a good value. create a value of your own

2) If a drop of water falls in lake there is no identity. But if it falls on a leaf of lotus it shine like a pearl. so choose the best place where you would shine..

3) Falling down is not defeat... defeat is when your refuse to get up...

4) Ship is always safe at shore... but is is not built for it

5) When your successful your well wishers know who you are; when you are unsuccessful
you know who your well wishers are

6) It is great confidence in a friend to tell him your faults;

7) "To the world you might be one person, but to one person you just might be the world

8) "Even the word 'IMPOSSIBLE' says 'I M POSSIBLE' "

9) Effort is important, but knowing where to make an effort in your life makes all the difference.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Info about flank steak

Flank steak can be broiled or grilled if it is marinated first. Marinades are seasoned liquids containing tenderizing ingredients, either acidic foods such as lemon juice, wine, vinegar , and tomato juice, or natural tenderizers such as pineapple, papaya, or ginger. Place the flank steak in an acid-resistant container, add marinade (1/4 to 1/2 cup for each 1 to 2 pounds of meat), and turn to make sure the marinade touches all surfaces. Cover, and marinate in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight. Marinades can used to baste meat while cooking or make a sauce. However, once the marinades have come in contact with raw meat, never consume them unless they have been thoroughly cooked so that all microorganisms are destroyed.


Place marinated flank steak on a broiling pan 2 to 3 inches from the heat source. Leave the oven door open, and broil 6 to 7 minutes on each side for medium rare, 9 minutes on each side for medium. Avoid overcooking, as it makes flank steak become tough.


Place marinated flank steak directly over the heat source and cook, uncovered, over medium heat for 17 to 21 minutes, turning once during cooking.

Stuff and bake

Prepare the stuffing mixture and lay the flank steak flat on a work surface. Spread stuffing over the surface of the steak , then roll up the meat as if it were a jelly roll . Tie every 2 inches with cotton string. Place in a baking pan and bake at 350°F for 40 minutes. Cool slightly before slicing.


Heat a skillet over medium-high heat, add oil, and brown steak on both sides. Add cooking liquid and seasonings. Reduce heat and simmer until tender, 1 1/4 to 1 3/4 hours.

Buying and storing tips
Look for flank steak that has a clear, red color. Beef normally is purplish-red, but when exposed to oxygen it takes on a cherry-red hue known as the "bloom." While the exterior is bright red, the interior of the meat retains the darker color. Vacuum-packed flank steak also shows this purplish color.

Packaged flank steak should be cold and the packaging free of punctures or tears; vacuum-packed flank steak should have its seal intact. The beef should be firm to the touch. Check the label for the "sell-by" date and make sure to buy it before or on that date.

Store flank steak in its original packaging in the coldest part of the refrigerator, where it will keep for three to four days. It may be frozen in this packaging for up to two weeks. For longer freezing, wrap the meat in heavy-duty aluminum foil, freezer paper, or freezer bags. Securely wrapped flank steak will keep 6 to 12 months in the freezer. Defrost the meat in the refrigerator, allowing 12 to 24 hours, depending on size and number of steaks. Cook as soon as possible after defrosting.

Though flank steak is known by several names, these all refer to the same lean cut of meat. vinegar , and tomato juice, or natural tenderizers such as pineapple, papaya, or ginger. Place the flank steak in an acid-resistant container, add marinade (1/4 to 1/2 cup for each 1 to 2 pounds of meat), and turn to make sure the marinade touches all surfaces. Cover, and marinate in the refrigerator for several hours or overnight. Marinades can used to baste meat while cooking or make a sauce. However, once the marinades have come in contact with raw meat, never consume them unless they have been thoroughly cooked so that all microorganisms are destroyed.



This delicious fudge from South India has a granular texture. Do not be alarmed by the amount of ghee mentioned in the recipe as most of it is drained out at the end of the cooking process.

Cooking Time : 20 mins.
Preparation Time : 10 mins.

Makes 12 pieces.


1/3 cup (50 grams) Bengal gram flour (besan)
1/3 cup (50 grams) plain flour (maida)
1/2 cup melted ghee
3/4 cup (150 grams) sugar

For pouring into the flour mixture:
3 cups melted ghee, hot.


1. In a bowl, combine the gram flour, plain flour and melted ghee and mix well. Keep aside.
2. In a kadhai, dissolve the sugar in 1/4 cup of water and bring to a boil. Simmer till the syrup is of 1 string consistency.
3. Add the gram flour mixture and mix well, stirring continuously in one direction, over a medium flame.
4. Pour the hot ghee a little at a time (approximately 1/4 cup) from a height so that it trickles in a thin stream in the centre of the Mysore pak mixture.
5. Stir continuously in a circular motion on a low flame. When the ghee is absorbed, the Mysore pak mixture will increase in volume(expand).
6. Stir in one direction (clockwise or anti-clockwise) only. When the mixture settles down a little, pour more hot ghee again and stir in the same manner.
7. Repeat steps 4 and 5 till the entire quantity of 3 cups of ghee has been poured and absorbed by the Mysore pak mixture.
8. Sprinkle 1/2 teaspoon of cold water on the Mysore pak. If it is ready, the Mysore pak will sizzle indicating that it is ready to be poured out.
9. Pour the mixture into a tray or thali approximately 100 mm. (4") in diameter. The sides of the thali should be at least 50 mm. (2") high.
10. Allow it to set and harden for about 5 minutes. Then, crack a small hole and drain out all the excess ghee. Approximately 2 to 2 1/2 cups will get drained out.
11. Cut into 12 squares and store in an air-tight container.


If a colander is used instead of the tray or thali to set the Mysore pak. Keep a bowl under the colander to collect the excess ghee which will drain out automatically.


1. A man took his pregnant wife to the hospital to give birth. The doctor told
them that he'd developed a new machine and asked if they'd like to try it.

The machine would take some of the woman's pain away and give it to the
father thereby easing the mothers burden.

The couple thought it was a good idea and agreed to give it a try. The Doc
set it on 10% to begin with, telling the man that 10% was still probably
more pain than he had ever felt.

The man was surprised at how little pain he was feeling and asked for it to
be increased. The doctor turned it up to 20% with the same results. This
trend continued until the machine was set at 100%.

After the delivery both mother and father felt fine. The wife was relieved
at having an almost painless labor and the father was still amazed at how
little pain was actually involved. Later, when they took the baby home, they
found the mailman dead on their doorstep.

2. A man is sitting at home one evening when the doorbell rings. When he answers the door, a 6 foot tall cockroach is standing there.
The cockroach immediately punches him between the eyes and scampers off.
The next evening, the man is sitting at home when the doorbell rings.
When he answers the door, the cockroach is there again. This time, it punches him, kicks him and karate chops him before running away...
The third evening, the man is sitting at home when the doorbell rings.
When he answers the door, the cockroach is there yet again. It leaps at him and stabs him several times before making off.
The gravely injured man manages to crawl to the telephone and summon an ambulance.
He is rushed to intensive care and they save his life. The next morning, the doctor is doing his rounds. He asks our hero what happened.
The man explains about the 6 foot cockroach's attacks, culminating in the near fatal stabbing. The doctor thinks for a moment and says, "Yes, there is a nasty bug
going around."

3. After my husband and I had a huge argument, we ended up not talking to each other for days. Finally, on the third day, he asked where one of his shirts was.
"Oh," I said, "So now you're speaking to me." He looked confused, "What are you talking about?"
"Haven't you noticed I haven't spoken to you for three days?" I challenged. "No," he said, "I just thought we were getting along."

4. After Mr. and Mrs. Fenton retired, Mrs. Fenton insisted her husband accompany her on her trips to Wal-Mart. Unfortunately, Mr. Fenton was like most men--he found shopping boring and preferred to get in and get out. Equally unfortunately, Mrs. Fenton was like most women--she loved to browse.
One day Mrs. Fenton received the following letter from her local Wal-Mart:
Dear Mrs. Fenton,
Over the past six months, your husband has been causing quite a commotion in our store. We cannot tolerate this behavior and may be forced to ban both of you from the store. Our complaints against Mr. Fenton are listed below and are documented by our video surveillance cameras.
June 15: Took 24 boxes of Polident and randomly put them in people's carts when they weren't looking.
July 2: Set all the alarm clocks in Housewares to go off at 5-minute intervals.
July 19: Walked up to an employee and told her in an official voice, "Code 3 in Housewares. Get on it right away."
August 4: Went to the Service Desk and tried to put a bag of M&M's on layaway.
September 14: Moved a "CAUTION - WET FLOOR" sign to a carpeted area.
September 15: Set up a tent in the camping department and told other shoppers he'd invite them in if they would bring pillows and blankets from the bedding department.
September 23: When a clerk asked if she could help him, he began crying and screamed, "Why can't you people just leave me alone?"
October 4: Looked right into the security camera and used it as a mirror while he picked his nose.
November 10: While handling guns in the hunting department, he asked the clerk where the antidepressants were.
December 3: Darted around the store suspiciously while loudly humming the "Mission Impossible" theme.
December 6: In the auto department, he practiced his "Madonna look" by using different sizes of funnels.
December 18: Hid in a clothing rack and when people browsed through, yelled "PICK ME! PICK ME!"
And last, but not least:
December 21: when an announcement came over the loud speaker, he assumed a fetal position and screamed, "oh no! it's those voices again!"


1. An old lady had always wanted to travel abroad. Now that she was getting on in years, she thought she would really like to do so before she died. But until now, she'd never even been out of the country. So she began by going in person to the Passport Office and asking how long it would take to have a passport issued.

"You must take the loyalty oath first," responded the passport clerk. "Raise your right hand, please."

The old gal raised her right hand.

"Do you swear to defend the Constitution of the United States against all its enemies, domestic or foreign?" was the first question.

The little old lady's face paled and her voice trembled as she asked in a small voice, "Uhhh... all by myself?"

2. There is a knock on St. Peter's door. He looks out and a man is standing there. St. Peter starts his interview with the man when all of a sudden, the man just disappears. A short time later there's another knock. St. Peter gets the door, sees the same man again, opens his mouth to speak, but the man disappears once again! This same scenario goes on two more times, each time, ending with the man disappearing.

"Hey, are you playing games with me?" an exasperated St. Peter calls after him.

"No," the man's distant voice replies anxiously. "They're trying to resuscitate me."

3. The banker had called the man in to talk about his account. "Your financial affairs are in a big mess! Your wife constantly overdraws your account. She is behind in her charge accounts at the department store, and her check stubs are all added wrong. So why don't you talk to her about it?"

"Because," said the man, "I would rather argue with you than with her."

4. We took the family to one of those restaurants where the walls are plastered with movie memorabilia. I went to see the hostess about reserving a table.

When I returned, I found my 11-year-old daughter staring at a poster of Superman standing in a phone booth. She looked puzzled.

"Doesn't she know who Superman is?" I whispered to my husband.

"Worse," he replied, "she doesn't know what a phone both is."


Serves 8

2 cups cooked brown rice HOT (can use white, instead)
1 can (16 oz) coconut milk
1-2 tsp sugar/sweetener if desired
1 cup sweetened shredded coconut
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
1 cup semi-sweet chocolate chips (or carob chips)
Sweetened whipped cream, or vanilla yogurt, or sweetened almond or soy milk, if desired
Additional chips or coconut shreds if desired for garnish

Learn how to make healing bath cookies

Learn how to make these healing bath cookies using sea salts to detox, oils to moisturize the skin and essential oils for aromatherapy.
5 tablespoons ground flax seeds (or 2 eggs)
6 tablespoons water
2 cups sea salt (finely ground)
1/2 cup _baking soda
1/2 cup cornstarch
2 tablespoons oil (see Hints)
1 teaspoon _vitamin E_oil
5 drops essential oil
Optional ingredients: Flower petals, small dried flowers, citrus peel, herbs, ginger
Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large bowl mix the ground flax seeds with water and stir until the mix becomes gelatinous. If using eggs instead, omit the water and whisk until mixed. Add the rest of the ingredients and combine to create dough. Shape dough into teaspoon size balls and place them on a baking sheet. Bake for ten minutes or until golden.
Drop two cookies in the tub and let dissolve. Makes 24 cookies.
HELPFUL HINTS: You can use any light oil, but the following oils are particularly well suited for skin: Avocado (very rich), almond, apricot kernel (great for sensitive skin), coconut, grapeseed (the least greasy), and olive. You can mix and match them too!

Story of faith

The scorpion and the old man

One morning, after he had finished his meditation, the old man opened his eyes and saw a scorpion floating helplessly in the water. As the scorpion was washed closer to the tree, the old man quickly stretched himself out on one of the long roots that branched out into the river and reached out to rescue the drowning creature. As soon as he touched it, the scorpion stung him. Instinctively the man withdrew his hand. A minute later, after he had regained his balance, he stretched himself out again on the roots to save the scorpion. This time the scorpion stung him so badly with its poisonous tail that his hand became swollen and bloody and his face contorted with pain.

At that moment, a passerby saw the old man stretched out on the roots struggling with the scorpion and shouted: "Hey, stupid old man, what's wrong with you? Only a fool would risk his life for the sake of an ugly, evil creature. Don't you know you could kill yourself trying to save that ungrateful scorpion?"

The old man turned his head. Looking into the stranger's eyes he said calmly, "My friend, just because it is the scorpion's nature to sting, that does not change my nature to save."

Information about bananas

Bananas . Containing three natural sugars - sucrose, fructose and glucose combined with fiber, a banana gives an instant, sustained and substantial boost of energy. Research has proven that just two bananas provide enough energy for a strenuous 90-minute workout. No wonder the banana is the number one fruit with the world's leading athletes. But energy isn't the only way a banana can help us keep fit. It can also help overcome or prevent a substantial number of illnesses and conditions, making it a must to add to our daily diet.

Depression : According to a recent survey undertaken by MIND amongst people suffering from depression, many felt much better after eating a banana. This is because bananas contain tryptophan, a type of protein that the body converts into serotonin, known to make you relax, improve your mood and generally make you feel happier.

PMS : Forget the pills - eat a banana. The vitamin B6 it contains regulates blood glucose levels, which can affect your mood.

Anemia : High in iron, bananas can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood and so helps in cases of anemia.

Blood Pressure : This unique tropical fruit is extremely high in potassium yet low in salt, making it the perfect to beat blood pressure. So much so, the US Food and Drug Administration has just allowed the banana industry to make official claims for the fruit's ability to reduce the risk of blood pressure and stroke

Brain Power : 200 students at a Twickenham (Middlesex) school were helped through their exams this year by eating bananas at breakfast, break, and lunch in a bid to boost their brain power. Research has shown that the potassium-packed fruit can assist learning by making pupils more alert.

Constipation : High in fiber, including bananas in the diet can help restore normal bowel action, helping to overcome the problem without resorting to laxatives.

Hangovers : One of the quickest ways of curing a hangover is to make a banana milkshake, sweetened with honey. The banana calms the stomach and, with the help of the honey, builds up depleted blood sugar levels,while the milk soothes and re-hydrates your system.

Heartburn : Bananas have a natural antacid effect in the body, so if you suffer from heartburn, try eating a banana for soothing relief.

Morning Sickness : Snacking on bananas between meals helps to keep blood sugar levels up and avoid morning sickness.

Mosquito bites : Before reaching for the insect bite cream, try rubbing the affected area with the inside of a banana skin. Many people find it amazingly successful at reducing swelling and irritation.

Nerves : Bananas are high in B vitamins that help calm the nervous system. Overweight and at work? Studies at the Institute of Psychology in Austria found pressure at work leads to gorging on comfort food like chocolate and crisps. Looking at 5,000 hospital patients, researchers found the most obese were more likely to be in high-pressure jobs The report concluded that, to avoid panic-induced food cravings, we need to control our blood sugar levels by snacking on high carbohydrate foods every two
hours to keep levels steady

Ulcers : The banana is used as the dietary food against intestinal
disorders because of its soft texture and smoothness. It is the only raw fruit that can be eaten without distress in over-chronicler cases. It also neutralizes over-acidity and reduces irritation by coating the lining of the stomach.

Temperature control: Many other cultures see bananas as a "cooling" fruit that can lower both the physical and emotional temperature of expectant mothers. In Thailand , for example, pregnant women eat bananas to ensure their baby is born with a cool temperature.

Seasonal = Affective Disorder (SAD) : Bananas can help SAD sufferers because they contain the natural mood enhancer tryptophan.

Smoking: Bananas can also help people trying to give up smoking. The B6,B12 they contain, as well as the potassium and magnesium found in them, help the body recover from the effects of nicotine withdrawal.

Stress : Potassium is a vital mineral, which helps normalize the
heartbeat, sends oxygen to the brain and regulates your body's water balance. When we are stressed, our metabolic rate rises, thereby reducing our potassium levels. These can be balanced with the help of a high-potassium banana snack.

Strokes : According to research in "The New England Journal of Medicine,"eating bananas as part of a regular diet can cut the risk of death by strokes by as much as 40%!

Warts: Those keen on natural alternatives swear that if you want to kill off a wart, take a piece of banana skin and place it on the wart, with the yellow side out. Carefully hold the skin in place with a plaster or surgical tape!

So, a banana really is a natural remedy for many ills. When you compare it to an apple, it has four times the protein, twice the carbohydrate, three times the phosphorus, five times the vitamin A and iron, and twice the other vitamins and minerals. It is also rich in potassium and is one of the best value foods around. So maybe its time to change that well-known phrase so that we say, "A banana a day keeps the doctor away!"


A mother is driving a little girl to her friend's house for a play date.
"Mommy," the little girl asks, "how old are you?"
"Honey, you are not supposed to ask a lady her age," the mother replied.
"It's not polite." "OK", the little girl says, "How much do you weigh?"
"Now really," the mother says, "those are personal questions and are really none of your business." Undaunted, the little girl asks, "Why did you and Daddy get a divorce?"
"That is enough questions, young lady, honestly!"
The exasperated mother walks away as the two friends begin to play.
"My Mom won't tell me anything about her," the little girl says to her friend.
"Well," says the friend, "all you need to do is look at her drivers license. It is like a report card, it has everything on it."
Later that night the little girl says to her mother, "I know how old you are, you are 32."
The mother is surprised and asks, "How did you find that out?
"I also know that you weigh 140 pounds."
The mother is past surprised and shocked now. "How in heaven's name did you find that out?"
"And," the little girl says triumphantly,"I know why you and daddy got a divorce."
"Oh really?" the mother asks. "Why?" "Because you got an F in sex."


Charlie was fixing a door and found that he needed a new hinge, so he sent his wife Mary to Home Depot. At Home Depot, Mary saw a beautiful bathroom faucet while she was waiting for Walt, the manager, to finish waiting on a customer. When Walt was finished, Mary asked "How much for that faucet?" Walt replied, "That's pewter and it costs $300."
"My goodness that sure is a lot of money!" Mary exclaimed.

Then she proceeded to describe the hinge that Charlie had sent her to buy, and Walt went to the back room to find it. From the back room Walt yelled, "Mary, you wanna screw for that hinge?" Mary replied, "No, but I will for the faucet."

This is why you can't send most women to Home Depot.

Thursday, October 25, 2007

Edit Images directly from Windows Explorer

Photo Toolkit provides quick access to a number of useful editing options right from your image viewing program. It does not embarrass you with a complicated interface: it enriches the software you're accustomed to with new advanced features and lets you enhance your photos in the usual environment. Now you can not only view your photos in Windows Explorer or in Windows Picture and Fax Viewer, but also edit them using different tools.
Enhance your photos while viewing them in your Windows Explorer or in Windows Picture and Fax Viewer. Fix red eye, correct colors, remove artifacts, create caricatures, add lighting effects to your photos etc. with a couple of clicks!
Batch processing lets you quickly edit multiple photos with minimal effort! You can process batches of images easily using Windows Explorer context menu or the stand-alone program.

Download Photo Toolkit at this location.

Want to create your online photo galleries ?

Well, here's a free tool to do that.
Web Photo Album offers the easiest way to create photo galleries for the web. We made it ultimately user friendly and highly usable to ensure that even new users will be able to create a web album in a couple of clicks. Attractive interface, built-in wizard, context sensitive help make creating a professional looking web gallery a breeze.
Web Photo Album users can easily share their photo albums by publishing them on our free online photo sharing service. No additional hosting is required. Sharing your albums is as easy as hitting the Publish button in the program toolbar! Links to your albums can be shared via e-mail, blogs, instant messengers.
On uploading, Web Photo Album generates a code that lets you replace an ordinary link with a picture looking like a preview of your album. Common HTML code and UBB compatible code are supported.

Download from this link.

Too much adware on your machine ?

If you have too much Adware on your machine, you should look for some protection. Too much adware can slow down your system, and is also a security risk.
Ad-Aware provides protection from known Spyware including: Data-mining, aggressive advertising, Parasites, Scumware, selected traditional Trojans, Dialers, Malware, Browser hijackers, and tracking components.
With Lavasoft's all new Code Sequence Identification (CSI) technology, you will not only be protected from known content, but will also have advanced protection against many of their unknown variants.

Download from this location.


1. A Polish girl went to the gynaecologist. She disrobed and got up into the stirrups.

The doctor was so shocked at the neglectful state of her vagina he asked, "When was the last time you had a check-up?"

"Well, to be honest with you," she blushed, "I've never had a Czech up there, but I have had several Hungarians."

2. An office manager was sent three secretaries, equally qualified, to fill one vacancy. "Well," thought the manager, "I'll give them an honesty test to determine which secretary to keep."

To this end, he gave each secretary a money bag to take and bank telling them that there was $50 in the bag. (In fact, he had placed $100 in each bag; thus the honesty test.)

The first secretary goes to the bank, discovers the extra money, banks $50 and returns the extra $50 to the manager.

The second secretary goes to the bank, discovers the extra money, banks the full $100, and returns with a deposit slip as proof.

The third secretary goes to the bank, discovers the extra money, banks $50, goes to the local TAB and uses the $50 to win $300, then returns, explains to the manager and gives him the all the money.

Question: Which secretary does the manager select to retain?

Answer: Well, DUH!... The one with the biggest breasts

3. A man gets his new prescription for Viagra, and starts home to get ready for when his wife gets home.
He calls her on the phone, and says, "I'll be home in an hour."
"Perfect," she replies.
The man thinks her agreement is great because the Doctor told him to take his Viagra an hour before.
He takes the Viagra and waits.
Well, an hour goes by, the man is ready to go, but no wife...
She calls him on the cell phone and says, "Traffic is terrible. I won't be there for about an hour and a half."
The man, frustrated, calls his Doctor for advice.
"What should I do?" he asks.
The Doctor replied, "It would be a shame to waste it. Do you have a housekeeper around?"
"Yes" the man replied.
"Well, maybe you can occupy yourself with her instead?" said the Doctor.
The man then replied with dismay, "But I don't need Viagra with the housekeeper..."

4. A guy walked into the doctor's surgery for an appointment.
"Would you like to tell me your problem?" the pretty blonde receptionist asked.
"I'll need the information for the doctor." "It's rather embarrassing" the guy stammered. "You see, I have a very large and almost constant erection."
"Well, the doctor is very busy today" the receptionist cooed, "but maybe I can squeeze you in."

5. A lawyer and an engineer were fishing in the Caribbean.
The lawyer said, "I'm here because my house burned down, and everything I owned was destroyed by the fire. The insurance company paid for everything."
"That's quite a coincidence," said the engineer. "I'm here because my house and all my belongings were destroyed by a flood, and my insurance company also paid for everything."
Looking somewhat confused, the lawyer asked, "How do you start a flood?"

Guide to repairing a Windows XP installation

Occasionally your Windows XP installation can become completely hosed. Be it
by spyware/viruses, accidentally deleting system files or messing with the registry, there are lots of things which can potentially go wrong. In these cases it the fix might be as simple as a repair of your XP installation. If you have never done a repair, this might sound to difficult to do, but it really isn't. With this guide to repairing a Windows XP installation,
All the steps are laid out. Additionally, there are several clearly marked warnings to make sure you avoid any pitfalls. If you are unsure of whether or not to repair your XP installation, make sure this is the appropriate step to take before you start. A good place to post questions to (of course) are the PC Mech Forums.
Note: before doing any major work on your OS install, make sure you have your important data backed up.

Outlook Express and folder problem

Q: Somehow a friend of mine has managed to detach any sub folders she created within the inbox. All her notes and other items were contained within these folders. I looked into the location of where her outlook express DBX files are normally kept and all main folders including sub folder references are in there. Whenever you go into the inbox folder list within OE though, no sub folders are found. Is there a way I can repair
this so that the inbox will show references to these sub folders as it did before in the tree list.

Ans: Your folders.dbx file is corrupted. To recreate it, do the following. Save somewere all the dbx files you don't see anymore as OE folders (or rename them if you are lacking of disk space. (with OE shut down) Then open OE and create the missing folders, using the exact name of the dbx files you dont see. In each of these folders, copy one email to activate the folder. (drag, holding Ctrl for ex) Close OE and put your saved dbx files back in OE folder, replacing the new ones with same names that has been created while you were creating your folders.

Cool inventions by the British

The British are an inventive lot. Problem is, they are not as good as the Americans when it comes to marketing the product or making money out of it. Here are 11 inventions you may have not realised the British have invented.

Usually the British are known for their stiff upper lip, but this time three Brits had something else in mind. If you suffer from erectile disfunction you have the British to thank. Andrew Bell, David Brown and Nicholas Terrett filed a patent in 1991 after investigating drugs for heart conditions.

Elastic fabric
Snapping back knicker elastic may not have happened if Thomas Hancock had not been into mastication. That's mastication, as in the shredding of rubber scraps to allow it to be made into sheets. Hancock invented elastic fabric for the use in fastenings such as suspenders, stockings etc. Inventing the rubber masticator along the way.
Hancock didn't bother to patent his masticator, but disguised its use by calling it a "pickle". Hancock went on to supply Charles Mackintosh with rubber for his raincoats.

Greeting card
Henry Cole invented the Christmas card and thereby the greeting card in 1846. He was bored with the idea of writing letters to people so he hired an artist to create a pleasant scene, cranked up the lithographic printer he had in the back room and manually coloured in the picture. Instant time saver. He quickly figured the financial potential of the item and put a thousand on sale. It is not known who put the first kitten on a greeting card.

John Walker in 1827, placed chemicals on the end of a stick which when rubbed against a rough surface would burst into flames. He had invented the first match. He called them "congreves" and didn't bother to patent them. The matches contained antimony sulfide, potassium chlorate, gum, and starch. But sales never really caught fire and he died with little money.

Electric toaster
The Electric toaster was invented by the British Company, Crompton and Co in 1893, the main problem with the electric toaster was getting a metal that was suitable. An alloy of nickel and chromium was patented which allowed current to be passed and a disipation of heat to occur without the element melting. A refinement was introduced in 1918 which allowed doors to turn the toast over to allow for toasting on both sides.
In 1926 the Americans thought they would get in on the act and invented the Toastmaster, which allowed the toast to be popped up when done. An American Otto Frederick Rohwedder, then invented sliced bread in 1928.

Flush toilet
Sir John Harrington, 1567, godson of Elizabeth I invented the flush toilet. Not Thomas Crapper as popular myth promotes. Crapper was a 19th century plumber who promoted bathroom fitting and even patented a few of his own, but not the flush toilet. Indeed the S bend, an important part of the modern flush toilet was invented by Alexander Cummings in 1775. Cummings also patented the modern flush toilet although it was improved on by a locksmith called Joseph Bramah, in fact a Bramah is still in use today at the British House of Lords

Vacuum cleaner
The first vacuum cleaner was so large it had to be drawn by horses. Hubert Cecil Booth invented the first vacuum cleaner in 1901. It was powered by petrol and long hoses would be fed into the house. Hoover came along in later years and made it into a convenient upright.

James Ayscough invented the hinged spectacles along with tinted glasses in 1752. These were tinted blue or green. He also made microscopes. It seems the 18th century was as cool and hip as today.

Stereophonic recording
Alan Blumlein Invented a single-groove system for stereophonic recording and patented the basics of stereophonic recording and reproduction in 1931. The ipod just wouldn't be as exciting without it.

Carbonated soft drinks
In 1767, the first drinkable man-made glass of carbonated water was created by Englishmen, Dr. Joseph Priestley. These carbonated soft drinks were frequently flavoured with lemon making them the forerunner of Lemonade.
He also discovered Oxygen, hydrochloric acid, nitrous oxide (laughing gas), carbon monoxide, and sulfur dioxide, and identified plant respiration and photosynthesis.

Rubber band
The first rubber band was made in 1845 by Stephen Perry of the rubber manufacturing company Messers Perry and Co., in London, England. This rubber band was made of vulcanized rubber. Perry invented the rubber band to hold papers or envelopes together.