How to ride a dead horse

From an email recently sent to me:

The tribal wisdom of the Dakota Indians, passed on from generation to generation, says that, “When you discover that you are riding a dead horse, the best strategy is to dismount.” However, in government, education, and in corporate America, more advanced strategies are often employed, such as:
1. Buying a stronger whip.

2. Changing riders.

3. Appointing a committee to study the dead horse.

4. Arranging to visit other countries to see how other cultures ride dead horses.

5. Lowering the standards so that dead horses can be included.

6. Reclassifying the dead horse as living-impaired.

7. Hiring outside contractors to ride the dead horse.

8. Harnessing several dead horses together to increase speed.

9. Providing additional funding and/or training to increase the dead horse’s performance.

10. Doing a productivity study to see if lighter riders would improve the dead horse’s performance.

11. Declaring that as the dead horse – does not have to be fed, – it is less costly, – carries lower overhead and – therefore contributes substantially more to the bottom line of the economy than do some other horses.

12. Rewriting the expected performance requirements for all horses. And of course the favorite…. and most prevalent…

13. Promoting the dead horse to a supervisory position

Car Logo Ripoffs from Around the World.

The Chinese have long been known for their ability to duplicate products and technologies in record time and bring them to market faster and more cheaply than any established manufacturer could ever dream. But whereas we may only see the Chinese as the great product knock-off  artists that they are, we often overlook other countries’ abilities when it comes to the fine art of the R&D (Rip-off & Duplicate) as is demonstrated by these fine car logo creations from around the world (but mostly China).

car rip off 1

BMW (Bavaria) vs.  BYD (China).

car rip off 2
Lamborghini (Italy) vs. Arash (UK)

car rip off 3
Mazda (Japan) vs. Haima (China)

car rip off 4
Aston Martin (England) vs. Hyundai Genesis (Korea)

car rip off 5
Toyota (Japan) vs. Changan(China)

car rip off 6
Toyota (Japan) vs. Jincheng, (China)

car rip off 7
Toyota(Japan) vs. Xiali (China)

car rip off 8
Toyota (Japan) vs. Merry (China)

car rip off 9
Infinity (Japan) vs. Chery (China)

car rip off 10
Infinity (Japan) vs. Suzhou (China)

car rip off 11
Infinity (Japan) vs.  Huaxiang (China)

car rip off 12
Mercedes (Germany) vs.  BAW (China)

car rip off 13
Oldsmobile (USA) vs. Mahindra (India)

car rip off 14
Oldsmobile (USA) vs. First Auto Works (China)

car rip off 15
Subaru (Japan) vs. Jiangnan, (China)

car rip off 16
Pegaso (Spain) vs. Carlsson (Germany)

car rip off 17
Jeep vs. Geep (The Philippines)

99 Ways to make money doing photography.

Photo of a baby

I have been taking pictures for a long time, and over the years I’ve learnt a lot and have hopefully gotten better – at least I’d like to think so [laugh] but recently I decided to convert my passion into my business. Where did I start:

– Making sure I had a the (affordable – thank you Ebay) equipment to cover a wide range of photography challenges

– Created a photography website and blog (using WordPress ofcourse)

– Put together a list of all the ways I could make money as a photographer (see the list below – largely taken from howtoadvice.com)

– Made a list of all the marketing opportunities I could think of

99 Ways to make money doing photography.

SPECIAL EVENTS

1. Photograph local vocational school graduates

2. Wedding photographer

3. Photograph large parties

4. Photograph at banquets

5. Prom and graduation photos

6. Photograph fashion shows

7. Photograph trade shows

8. Wedding videos

9. Photograph grand openings & launches

10. Photograph local performances

11. Commencement day photographs

PEOPLE

12. Take pictures of people mounted on a horse

13. Make Polaroid pictures of seamen going abroad

14. Take pictures of people wearing special costumes

15. Photograph people on a fancy motorcycle

16. Take pictures of people in nightclubs

17. Take pictures on the beach

18. Antique photo shop – produce 1890’s type portraits for the “nostalgic crazy”

19. Take I.D. photos

20. Take passport photos

21. Specialize in legal photography

22. Produce community yearbooks

23. Produce company year books

24. Produce composites for models, actors and actresses

25. Photo fund raising

26. Take slow-motion sports film for athletes

27. Take executive portraits

28. Photograph children on a pony

29. Take portraits of children in department stores or malls

30. A day in a child’s life – an album of 30 pictures

31. School photography

32. Santa Claus portraits

33. Traveling industrial photographer

34. Illustrate manufacturers’ sales manuals and catalogs

35. Illustrate manufactures’ sales manuals and catalogs

36. Public relation photos for business

37. Photograph store fronts

38. Produce progress photos on construction sites

39. Real estate photography

40. Produce illustrated promotional brochures for business firms, hotels, etc.

41. Interior decorator’s photographer

42. Photograph in-store merchandise displays

ON THE ROAD

43. Foreign fashion photography for textile and fashion manufacturers

44. Photograph tourists in famous places

45. Summer camp photographer

46. Roving festival photographer

47. Sell scenic prints to gift shops and hotels

48. Offer personalized vacation photo packages to resort clients

49. Sell slide shows of interesting places or subjects

50. Build a mobile portrait studio in a trailer or van

51. Be a slide-show lecturer on different subjects and geographic locations

MAKING NOVELTIES

52. Candid key chain photos

53. Photo stamps

54. Color postcards for hotels or resorts

55. Exceptional color scenes for calendar printers

56. Personalized Christmas cards – with family portraits or photos of family home

57. Photo buttons

58. Photographs on coffee mugs

59. Photographs on shirts

60. Imprint a photograph of a child on the face of her doll

61. Photo sculptures

62. Bookends adorned with any desired photographic subject

63. Decorative photo plaques

64. Personalized photo matchbooks

65. Instant personal postcards by gluing Polaroid shots to blank postcards

66. Stationery imprinted with personal portraits

67. Custom calendars

SERVICES

68. A microfilming service

69. Photo duplicating service

70. Slide duplicating service

71. Restoring old photos

72. Producing filmstrips

73. Duplicating negatives to sell

74. Slide-titling service

75. Making offset negatives and plates

76. Collecting old photos to make into books

77. Making photomurals

78. Retouching service

79. Custom photo lab

80. Blowing up photos, on the spot

81. Photo oil portraits

82. Selling prints to photo agencies

83. Camera rental

84. Camera exchange

85. Repairing cameras

86. Teaching photography

MISCELLANEOUS

87. Making postcards

88. Publicity photography

89. Photographic essays for various publications

90. T.V. news freelancing

91. Selling news photos

92. Taking and selling peculiar photos

93. Selling local photos for travel magazines

94. Aerial photography

95. Documentary film making

96. Photos of human interest

97. Composing photo guides for tourists

98. Photographing accidents for lawyers and insurance companies

99. Photographing parades

Apple Store Frozen in Time

I stumbled across this pictorial recently. It is of an abandoned (circa 2000) Apple Store in Kuwait that’s just been sitting there. It is very interesting to see how Apple’s design philosophy has changed so much over time. For those of you long time Apple users, like myself, this should be very nostalgic.

Photos by Miskan

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NetVibes Digital Life Aggregator

So I discovered NetVibes today. Ok so I didn’t so much discover (as in Christopher Columbus) it, because I’ve known about NetVibes for some time now, but I made the switch from IGoogle(and Google reader) as my DLA/homepage over to NetVibes. NetVibes is a free Digital Life Aggregator, that allows you to organize your entire online life( for the most part) into tabbed pages. Everything from email to blogs to comics and games. Why, might you ask, would such an avid supporter of the googleverse make such a fundamental digital-life change? Well for what I have lost in one click access to all my various google accounts/apps and tools I have gained in recouped time and ease of use. So here are some of the things that made me switch:

Thing number 1: Visual appeal

The flexible layout ie. 2/3/4 column options make visually much easier to canvas all your feeds in a manner that saves time and space. It truly allows you to get all you information at a glance. Plus there’re just more things that can be optimized to better your experience.

Thing number 2: It’s like Google reader and Igoogle smashed into one app.

Netvibes’ layout and navigation is more like igoogle (on steroids), but the functionality and depth of information is more like google reader. Most widgets display up to the last 25 posts from an rss fee, whereas igoogle only allows you a measly 9.

Thing number 3: Sharing stuff

Incidentally, that’s how I first leart of NetVibes, through an invite which included the invitor’s setup for a particular tab. Yes, I was able to, with one click, start using a presetup netvibes page inclusive of cool widgets and feeds already setup by my friend who invited me to test it out. By the way, here’s a link to try net vibes out: http://www.netvibes.com/subscribe.php?preconfig=126efb5c739f8468139e69206b4fe46d

Thing number 4: It’s portable

If one day I decide NetVibes isn’t for me anymore, I can pack up my digital belongings via OPML and move on the the next DLA. Google has been touting the coming of this feature for a long time, but I am yet to see it. Incidentally, had they already done this, it would have made the switch to NetVibes a lot less time consuming.

Thing number 5: Netvibes supports igoogle widgets!

At least so they claim, and we all know how “support” for a 3rd party format can be. Up until writing this posted, I hadn’t tested the feature, but it does exist.

Thing number 6: They’re going social with Netvibes Ginger.

Yes, now it will be a whole lot easier with NetVibes Ginger (now in testing) to share all this wonderful “Funtastimation” that you’ve amassed in all new ways.

So why doesn’t Google just make one even more killer app like Netvibes?

My guess is: 1. They’re working on it and/or 2. The same internal structure which has led to Google’s great success where people take ownership of projects that are their own ideas can sometimes lead to political/bureaucratic slowdowns when it comes time for the company to change direction, shutdown, or merge projects especially if those project leaders have become more influential in the company . and/or 3. We’re so big and have so many things going on right now that this is the least of our issues. Plus, what is a “netvibe” anyways? Who knows. My point is, give Netvibes a chance, you might just like it.

Rf.

The 10 Most Expensive Cell Phones in the World

With all the hoopla surrounding the Iphone (and its fluctuating pricetag) one might might be lulled into thinking that the Iphone is the be-all and end-all in the world cell phones. The truth be told though, the Iphone is more like the Corvette of the cellphone industry, relatively expensive to the average consumer, but in the bigger picture, it’s a cheap horsepower contender and drop in the bucket when compared to these high rolling entrants into the world of cellphones. And yes, the top cellphone contender is more expensive than the Mercedes Maybach, the Ferrari Enzo and the Bugatti Veyron!

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10. Prada phone by LG

Price: $780

Prada phone by LG
The Prada phone by LG just narrowly edged my personal favorite, the Gold Striker Gold 24-carat Iphone to make the list. At just 1.2 cm thick, the Prada phone, like the Iphone, has no buttons and is operated solely by way of the touch screen.

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9. Porsche Cellphone by Sagem

Price: $1,600

Porsche Cellphone by Sagem

Designed by Porsche, but engineered and manufactured by France-based Sagem, the Porsche handset is currently available in Britain, Dubai and other oversees markets. The phone is expected to make its U.S. debut in 2008 possible through Porsche Dealerships.

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8. Mobiado Professional EM

Price: $2,200

Mobiado Professional EM
Made from ebony wood, hard-anodized aluminum and titanium, Nokia driven Mobiado Professional EM handsets are individually unique due to the variations in wood patterning per instrument. It features a 1.3 MP camera, music playback and an FM radio.

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7. Gresso Black Aura Collection

Price: Up to $13,000

Gresso Black Aura Collection

Gresso boastfully claims that its Black Aura cellphones are 200 years old – due to the age of the African Blackwood on each phone’s case. Black Aura series ranges from $6,500 to $13,000 with the most expensive featuring an 18-carat gold front panel.

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6. Diamond Iphone

Price: $41,000

Diamond Iphone
The diamond iPhone boasts an impressive 420 diamonds at a total weight of 5.65 carats set in 18K white or yellow gold. It can also be ordered in white, black or pink sapphires. The phone, by UK blingmeister general Amosu, at a blustering $41,000 is sure to not make any “Will it blend” videos anytime soon.

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5.Vertu Signature

Price: Up to $81,000

Vertu Signature
Vertu, a subsidiary of Nokia, claims that it took expert craftsmen some three years of training to learn to make their phones. This classic, the Vertu Signature, contains 943 diamonds on its bezel and 48 more on its keypad, each set in place by hand in Switzerland.

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4. VIPN Black Diamond Smartphone

Price: $300,000

VIPN Black Diamond Smartphone
The creation of Swiss manufacturer VIPN, the titanium construction known as the “Black Diamond” is a one of a kind actually a 1 of 5 to be exact, and for generously shelling out 300,000 big ones, you get a Quadband phone with WiFi and Bluetooth, a 2 inch 256K TFT screen, 4MP camera, VOIP and 2 huge diamonds.

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3. Bucheron for Vertu Cobra

Price: $310,000

Bucheron for Vertu Cobra
Parisian jeweler House of Bucheron linked up with Nokia subsidiary Vertu on this limited-edition series of eight cobra phones, which include a two-carat pear-cut diamond, a one-carat round diamond, two emerald eyes and 439 rubies totaling 21 carats. Vertu phones also link up to a special concierge service with information about travel, entertainment, restaurants and events. Other Vertu phones sell between $4,350 and $81,000.

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2. The Diamond Crypto Smartphone

Price: $1.3 Million

The Diamond Crypto Smartphone
Designed by diamond encruster extraordinaire Peter Aloisson The Diamond Crypto Smartphone is sometimes quoted as the World’s most expensive cell phone (depending on exchange rates). Russian firm JSC Ancort has developed a Windows CE-based smartphone ready for Aloisson’s bejeweling that employs “powerful encryption technology” to “provide secure protection of information against kidnapping, technological blackmail, financial racketeers and corrupted state officials” — sounds like marketing speak for a password-protected wallet app. Of course, with its $1.3 million price tag and 50 diamonds (10 of which are blue) you might start to have more trouble with mugging than with technological blackmail.

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1. The GoldVish Le Million

Price: $1.45 Million

The GoldVish Le Million
Guinness World Records certifies this GoldVish phone as the most expensive in the world–1 million euros, or about $1.45 million. The odd-shaped device is made out of 18-carat white gold and features 1,800 diamonds totaling 120 carats. A Russian businessman bought Le Million for his wife last September at a luxury goods fair in Cannes, France. Don’t have a spare million for this made-by-request gadget? Geneva-based GoldVish has plenty of expensive phones in its lineup, including models with gold plating and diamond-studded cases.

1 Million Dollar Homes from Across the World

With all the buzz about the real estate market in the U.S. and how it’s affecting real estate prices across, I decided to look into what US $1 Million will get you around the world and here’s a sampling of what I found:

Atlanta, GA, USA

Price: $1.05 million
Beds/Bath: 6 beds/6 bath
Amenities: A million dollars will get you far in Atlanta. This two-story brick manse has six bedrooms, six bathrooms, three fireplaces and a gourmet kitchen with stainless steel appliances. The interior boasts 10-foot ceilings, and the master bathroom includes both a garden tub and whirlpool. Outside, the property rests on a third of an acre and has a three-car garage and a backyard deck.

Buenos Aires, Argentina

Price: $1.1 million
Beds/Bath: 4 bed

Amenities: This 7,500-square-foot home on just over one-half acre features four bedrooms, including a master suite with a dressing room and a bathroom with a whirlpool tub. The garden boasts a large veranda, in-ground pool and covered barbeque area.

For more information, please contact Reynolds Propiedades Argentina Real Estate.

Chicago, IL, USA

Price: $1.1 million
Beds/Bath: 4 bed

Amenities: Located in the historic Lakewood/Balmoral neighborhood of Chicago, this recently renovated townhome includes four bedrooms and three bathrooms. The large downstairs family room opens to a cedar deck and backyard with a gas barbeque hookup and a two-car garage. The kitchen has professional appliances and the entire first floor has been outfitted with radiant heat to offset those cold Windy City winters.

San Jose de Pinilla, Costa Rica

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 3 bed/3bath

Amenities: This Spanish Colonial-inspired home sits on a half-acre within the Reserva de Golf beach community in the Guanacaste region of the country. It has three bedrooms, three bathrooms, a solarium and spacious kitchen as well as maid’s and guest rooms and an outdoor pool.

Johannesburg, South Africa

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 4 bed/3.5bath

Amenities: This contemporary masterpiece boasts four bedrooms and three-and-a-half bathrooms, as well as a massive chef’s kitchen and expansive, covered patio for outdoor entertaining. Health nuts will find much to keep them occupied in the gym room while the busy executive can hunker down in the home office.

London, UK

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 2 bed/1bath

Amenities: The dollar may be weak compared with the pound, but with a million of them, you can buy a two-bedroom, one-bathroom, second-floor apartment in this stately Victorian building in Belsize Village, a neighborhood filled with restaurants and shops just northwest of downtown London.

Los Angeles, CA, USA

Price: $1.07 million
Beds/Bath: 5 bed/3.5bath

Amenities: Built in 1891, this Queen Anne Victorian is a California historical cultural landmark dubbed the Ernest Wood House. Three stories, with wood-carved stairway railings, the 2,880-square-foot home has five bedrooms, three-and-a-half baths, hardwood floors, a formal dining room and five fireplaces. Outside, a covered wrap-around porch looks out on the landscaped yards and gardens of this 13,000-square-foot lot, which includes a backyard gazebo.

New York, NY, USA

Price: $1.05 million
Beds/Bath: 3 bed/3bath

Amenities: Though only 794 square feet, this midtown apartment has sweeping views of downtown Manhattan, the Hudson River and the Statue of Liberty through its floor-to-ceiling windows. The one-bedroom, one-bathroom space is in the Orion building, which has a health club, 60-foot lap pool, Jacuzzis, saunas, a screening room, onsite concierge service and free breakfast for residents.
Paris, France

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 3 bed/2bath

Amenities: Located in the 20th arrondissement of Nation, this three-level townhouse on a quiet lane features three bedrooms, two bathrooms, living and dining rooms and a study, which faces a 260-square-foot private garden. There is also a wine cellar for oenophiles to store their Loire Valley bottles.

Rome, Italy

Price: $1 million
Beds/Bath: 2 bed/2bath

Amenities: Boasting beamed wooden ceilings, a living room, two bedrooms and two bathrooms, this restored apartment is on the third floor of the medieval building, pictured, in Via San Cosimato, which is close to the Piazza San Maria in Trastevere.
Sydney, Australia

Price: $1.15 million
Beds/Bath: 3 bed/2bath

Amenities: Designed to take advantage of its position on Sydney Harbor, this three-bedroom, two-bathroom apartment has expansive views from its north-facing balcony. Set in the Jacksons Landing waterfront, the apartment has a gourmet kitchen with marble floors and stainless steel appliances, two parking spaces, walk-in closets in all bedrooms and access to tennis courts, a pool, a gym and nearby harborside parks.
Tel Aviv, Israel

Price: $1.2 million
Beds/Bath: 5 bed/5bath

Amenities: Not only does this immaculately kept penthouse offer stunning sea views and a spacious outdoor deck, but living areas are suitable for entertaining and five bedrooms.

Tokyo, Japan

Price: $1.1 million
Beds/Bath: 4 bed/3bath

Amenities: This 1,700-square-foot, four-bedroom home is located in the Megoro-Ku section of the city, which offers fine dining and shopping, as well as quiet residential areas. It has parking for two cars and a traditional Tatami, or meditation, room.

Toronto, Canada

Price: $1.2 million
Beds/Bath: 2 bed/3bath

Amenities: A two-bedroom, three-bathroom condo is one of 45 custom-designed apartment in this elegant building that offers residents an indoor pool and fitness center, formal gardens, a billiards room and a library that can be used for entertaining.