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Nancy Clayson

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Nancy is a young, full of life lady who joined the team shortly after the BelleNews site started to run. She is focused on bringing up to light all the latest news from the technology industry. In her opinion the hi-tech expresses the humanity intellectual level. Nancy is an active person; she enjoys sports and delights herself in doing gardening in her spare time, as well as reading, always searching for new topics for her articles.

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Birla Sun Life ULIP plans have in the recent times emerged as among the leading unit-linked plans in the market. Indeed, the sheer magnanimity of the plans offered to the potential customer hints at the versatility of individual-specific policies beefed up with comprehensive insurance deals. Moreover, the flexibility and viability inherent in the major ULIPs have succeeded in forming a lasting appeal and a broad customer base. Some of the features and specialties of some of the plans are listed below.

Birla Sun Life– Wealth Assure ULIP Plan

•    One of the defining aspects of the plan is the fact that the premiums are paid for a limited span of time only.

•    There are three investment choices to be chosen according to the customer’s preference: Lifecycle, systematic transferand self-managed choice.

•    The entire fund value is formally payable on the date of maturity of the plan.

•    The amount of the particular Sum Assured can be subject to change as per the choice of the insured person.

•    On death, the sum of the assured amount and the specific value of the fund is shelled out to the concerned nominee.

•    According to the plan, partial withdrawals can be availed only after a lock-in period of five years.

•    Keeping in mind the volatility of the initial years, the plan gives customers the scope to shift between different funds.

•     The redirection of the plan premiums is available in order for the insured person to direct the premiums to be paid to the new funds.

•    Income tax benefits may be afforded as per the Income Tax Act.

Birla Sun Life ULIP Plan – Wealth Max ULIP Plan

•    So far as this plan is concerned, it is important to note that the premium is paid for once and for all at the beginning of the plan.

•    According to the plan, partial withdrawals can only be made after a period of five years.

•    The plan gives customers the scope to change between funds through the succeeding years.

•    In order to increase the fund value and the amount of the Sum Assured, top-ups may be done by the insured person.

•    Additionally, it is vital to note that upo nthe maturity of the plan; the fund value is shelled out coupled with the top up if any.

•    Guaranteed addition kicks in from the sixth year of the tenure of the plan. Additionally, the premium net charges may be invested in any of the thirteen funds offered by the plan.

•    Income tax benefits may be availed as per the relevant tax laws.

Birla Sun Life– Wealth Secure ULIP Plan

•    One of the fundamental aspects of the plan is that the premiums are paid for a limited span of time only.

•    The plan provides individual cover up to his/ her hundredth year of living

•    There are three investment choices to bechosen according to the customer’s preference: Lifecycle, systematic transfer, and self-managed choice.

•    Partial withdrawal can be carried out only upon the completion of five years.

•    Switching between funds can be done according to the preference of the insured.

•    Additionally, it is important to mark that the amount of the particular Sum Assured can be increased or decreased according to the preference of the customer.

•    Guaranteed additions kick in from the eleventh year of the plan.

•    Top ups can be done in order to increase the fund value.

•    According to Section 80C of the Income Tax Act of India, the insured person can avail of the relevant tax benefits.

•    Premium redirection is available in order for the insured person to direct the future premiums to the new funds.

Birla Sun Life ULIP Plan – Fortune Elite ULIP Plan

•    Once again, the concerned premiums under the plan are paid only for a limited span of time.

•    Guaranteed additions kick in from the start of the eleventh year.

•    On maturity, the fund value along with any top up is paid accordingly.

•    In order for the insured person to direct the future premium to novel funds, he or she can avail of the premium redirection of the funds.

•    Additionally, as per the compliance of the plan is concerned, it is important to keep in mind that the insured person has ample scope to switch between funds according to his or her choice.

•    According to certain sections of the Income Tax Act of India, the insured person can avail of the relevant tax benefits.

•    According to the provisions of the plan, the minimum sum assured is Rs. 4 lakh while there is no limit specified for the maximum amount of Sum Assured.

Birla Sun Life ULIP Plan – Wealth Aspire ULIP Plan

•    Apart from the plans mentioned above, the premium in this plan can either be paid for a limited period or for the entire span of the policy tenure.

•    Accordingly, the insured person can choose from any of the following four fund choices: Smart, return optimizer, systematic transfer and self-managed choice.

•    Guaranteed additions kick in from the beginning of the sixth year of the plan.

•    On the date of maturity of the plan, the fund value along with any top up is disbursed accordingly.

•    Like all the previous plans, partial withdrawal can be made only after the completion of the first five years.

•    According to Section 80C and Section 10D of the Income Tax Act of India, the insured person can avail of the relevant tax benefits.

•    On death, the amount of the Sum Assured is shelled out subject to at least 105% of the total premium payment.

•    It is important to note that the minimum amount of Sum Assured is Rs. 3 lakh while there is an upper limit specified fort he max sum assured.

•    So far as the payment of all premiums is concerned, it is important to keep in mind that premiums under this plan can be paid annually, half-yearly, quarterly and monthly.

•    Generally speaking, the minimum tenure of the plan is ten years and the maximum period of the plan is forty years.

•    The minimum age of entry is thirty days while the maximum age of entry is sixty years.

•    The minimum age of maturity under the plan is eighteen years whereas the maximum age of maturity is seventy years.

The aforementioned policies are among the leading plans of the time. Indeed, the flexibility of each and every plan and the thorough customer oriented evaluations hint at the success of the ULIP plans. Moreover, it is important to keep in mind that it is always a vital point to thoroughly go through the specific terms and conditions of the plan being considered.

So far as the plan cancellation process is concerned, the insured person is required to submit all the opposite and relevant policy documents along with a properly filled surrender form in the nearest branch of the company in the city. Also, it is essential to mark that the respective surrender value is calculated according to the market rates if the form is submitted before 3 pm; else the value of the succeeding day is taken into consideration.

Additionally, it is beneficial to note that the concerned policy holder can check the policy status online. In order to check the policy status online, one needs to log into the e-portal.

So far as the policy renewal process is concerned, the following steps must be noted:

•    First and foremost, the user needs to access the e-portal with the ID and the password.

•    Secondly, the mode of payment is to be clicked in order to renew the policy.

•    Lastly, the payment receipt is to be printed.

Given the sheer extent of the possibilities regarding the policy, one might not be too far from getting befuddled at the mere sight of the choices. However, it is important to note that the selection of the most apposite plan depends on the clarity one has about one’s one financial needs and aspirations. In other words, it is essential to appropriately comprehend one’s preferences and risk appetite before concluding upon a choice.

Against such a backdrop, it is generally advised to consider consulting the aid of an insurance agent. Although most of the times an agent tends to parrot the virtues of the representative company, it is none the less beneficial as it helps bring about a relatively clearer picture of the essentialities and eventualities. On the other hand, if one wishes to shuck the insurance agent, he or she can also lookup for the various plans and policies online and then indulge in a thorough and intensive comparative study. Sometimes the best options are thrown only during an intricate comparison.  Essentially, the idea is to evoke a clear picture of one’s own financial orientation in order to bring about as relevant a choice of plan as possible.

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Kitchen deems the essential part of your home. It needs careful consideration upon planning and installation. Everything you need to include and design in your kitchen must undergo critical preparation to achieve the design that you want to incorporate.

That said,  one of the most prominent kitchen design which stayed traditionally for a couple of years is minimalism. A minimalist kitchen design showcases a sexy and sleek design look. Additionally, it also produces an environment where you use fewer materials but looks more upon completion.

Hence, we’d like to lay out to you some few ways on how to achieve a minimalist kitchen design without spending too much. These things will help you save a lot of money at the same time gives your kitchen a simple decor and furniture.

Less is More

The primary objective of having a minimalist kitchen design must be making all things simple. On the other hand, the simplification of the plan does mean the absence of your overall design.

In this case, you have to make sure that you gather everything you need to put in your kitchen. Do not include unnecessary details and focus more on the design. Choose top and base cabinets that have strong door panels for more extended storage. Lastly, the monochromatic color palette will surely help in achieving a minimalist kitchen design.

Clean Lines

The true meaning of a minimalist kitchen design would be achieving a clean and crisp line. Always consider properly concealed handles and hinges, square edges, and sharp corners. These finishing lines should come primarily of every tile and floform finishes.

Also, the minimalist kitchen design emphasizes the simple horizontal lines, vertical lines, and solid cube forms. Make sure that you play with these shapes upon designing your kitchen to achieve a minimalist kitchen trademark ideally.

Single Focal

When planning a minimalist kitchen design, you have to make sure you get your focal point. Always stick with a single color palette to add a personal touch to your kitchen. Holding with one color palette will not dilute the overall effect of the design.

Moreover, you may also add a prominent light fixture over the island to make sure that your kitchen has a life and personality.

Clutter Free

Decluttering everything that’s unnecessary in your kitchen demands the most significant factor in achieving a minimalist kitchen design. You have to put everything in place and arrange them in order.

That said, you may include smart storage types for some appliances and concealed trash bins to have a fuss-free look. Bear in mind that the true meaning of minimalism associates an open, free, and clean spaces.

Ditch Items in the Right Place

In attaining a sleek look for your kitchen, you have to make sure that you put every kitchen utensils and appliances in the right place. Relocate everything that doesn’t belong to the kitchen and put them in an area where they should accord.

Furthermore, find a location in your home where you can transfer the items that don’t belong to the kitchen in the first place.

Material Beauty

Every minimalist kitchen design must celebrate the laxity of materials included upon installation. Make sure that you choose the right surface and textures which should be needed upon installation.

Also, designing a small kitchen prefers a  minimalist theme. It is to make sure that you don’t overwhelm your kitchen space with a lot of materials and storages. At the same time, countertops, concrete, and wood grains should have beautiful qualities to achieve your goal.

Takeaway

Always consider that the true essence of minimalism must be making every space in your kitchen creative and sleek. Hiding every kitchen appliances that don’t need daily usage and clearing kitchen counters helps you achieve a minimalist kitchen appearance.

Thus, choosing the right material, ditching everything in the proper place, focusing on a single color palette, decluttering, and cleaning every line will surely help you achieve your goal of having a minimalist kitchen space.

Meng Wanzhou, the daughter of the founder of Chinese telecoms giant Huawei, has been arrested in Canada and faces extradition to the US.

The Huawei’s chief financial officer and deputy chair was arrested in Vancouver on December 1.

Details of the arrest have not been released but the US has been investigating the Chinese company over possible violation of sanctions against Iran.

China’s embassy in Canada protested at the arrest and demanded Meng Wanzhou’s release.

Huawei said it had little information about the charges and was “not aware of any wrongdoing by Ms Meng”.

Meng Wanzhou’s arrest comes at a sensitive time for US-China relations. China and the US are engaged in a trade war that has seen both impose duties of billions of dollars on one another’s goods.

The arrest will not help the 90-day tariff truce the nations agreed after President Donald Trump and President Xi Jinping met at the G20.

It also coincides with moves to restrict the use of Huawei technology in Western countries. The US, Australia and New Zealand have blocked the use of Huawei’s equipment in infrastructure for new faster 5G mobile networks.

Huawei has denied claims made by former CIA chief Michael Hayden that it has spied for the Chinese government

Huawei denies spying for Chinese government

Huawei and ZTE pose a security threat to the US, congressional panel warns

US and China Agree to Halt New Trade Tariffs for 90 Days

Canada’s ministry of justice confirmed the date and place of Meng Wanzhou’s arrest and added: “She is sought for extradition by the United States, and a bail hearing has been set for Friday.”

It said it could not say more as Meng Wanzhou had sought a ban on the publication of details and this had been ordered by the courts.

A spokesman for the DoJ in the Eastern District of New York – which Huawei said had brought the charges – declined to comment.

Huawei is under investigation for potential violations of US sanctions against Iran.

One report in the New York Times said the US commerce and treasury departments had subpoenaed Huawei over suspected violation of sanctions against both Iran and North Korea.

US lawmakers have repeatedly accused Huawei of being a threat to US national security, arguing that its technology could be used for spying by the Chinese government.

Huawei said Meng Wanzhou, the daughter of founder Ren Zhengfei, was detained while transferring between flights.

In a statement, the company said it had complied with “all applicable laws and regulations where it operates, including applicable export control and sanction laws and regulations of the UN, US and EU.

“The company believes the Canadian and US legal systems will ultimately reach a just conclusion.”

Huawei is one of the largest telecommunications equipment and services providers in the world, recently passing Apple to become the second-biggest smartphone maker after Samsung.

Some Western governments fear China will gain access to fifth-generation (5G) mobile and other communications networks through Huawei and expand its spying ability, although the company insists there is no government control.

The US has brought a number of legal cases against Chinese technology firms, with accusations such as cyber-security theft and violations of Iran sanctions.

Earlier this year, it barred US companies from exporting to ZTE, effectively shutting down the firm. The US later replaced the ban with a fine and governance changes.

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Image source Pixabay

How does the free market differentiate start up companies that end up successful from those that fall flat?  It would seem that the base concept of the new company is where either the fault, or the success, lies.  But there’s more to start up achievement than that.  Of course, your product or service needs to solve a real problem, and/or meet real needs.

But lots of start up concepts do that and still fail.  Why?  Because leadership is more than just vision; it is the ability to inspire in others your desire to be the best and that starts by setting an example with your attitude, work ethic, and determination.

Your start up is going to succeed mostly by the triumph of your will over the other competitors in the marketplace that were there before your new start up came on the scene.  There’s only room for so many gladiators in the supply side arena and you need to battle and make sure that your company is still standing when the dust clears.

Here are some tips and tactics that can help you survive the early start up challenges long enough to establish your brand and thrive in the struggle for today’s expanding market share.

Tip #1: Put the Right Team in Place

This product or service may be your baby, but you’ll need help to get it out there, up and running.  You’ve got to surround yourself with experienced experts who understand your vision and fit into the culture and mindset of your company in order to achieve your ultimate goals.

And don’t assume you’ll be able to take your time assembling your team.  The good people, the ones that can drive your business as hard as you do, usually aren’t available for very long.  Make sure you’re quick on the hiring trigger when the right person’s CV floats across your desk.

Tip #2: Don’t Be Afraid to Experiment

Once you get your product off the ground, particularly if it is innovative and popular straightaway, there are going to be copycats.  So, what do you do?  Try to sue everyone to prevent them from copying you?  Or do you immediately develop ancillary products that enhance your original so that you quickly have a whole line of items that are dependent upon and, thus, support each other.  Think iPhones and the proprietary peripherals that are only available from Apple.

Expanding your product line to prevent imitation is going to take experimentation in the real world and that means trial measures like producing working prototypes quickly and efficiently.  There are companies, like medical prototype manufacturing businesses or product design and development firms that specialize in this sort of on-the-fly, real-world development.  Many of these Research and Development outfits will work with your company on a contingency basis, especially if you can offer the developer a share in the manufacturing of that prototype when it eventually goes into production.

Tip #3: Find the Mentors You Need

As your business develops, you are going to want an advisory board to offer advice and guidance to help you navigate the entrepreneurial maze.  Don’t be embarrassed or anxious to solicit people to mentor you.

You’re going to be surprised by how many of the giants of the industry are glad to be asked to be on your board, and eager to help guide your new business, just like their own mentors once guided them.

Tip #4: Establish a Business Entity for Your Protection

Contracts and legal paperwork might not be very important to you during the early days of your startup, but operating a business without a business entity in place can put your idea in jeopardy and also your personal assets at risk.

Protect your concept legally and form an LLC so that you don’t risk legal problems later.  Talk to an attorney that specializes in creating start up businesses in order to set up your new company as a separate entity in and of itself.

Tip #5: Treat Your Ideas Carefully

One of the hardest parts of having a terrific new idea or concept is not talking about it to everyone you meet.  Practice keeping your ideas as close to the vest as possible and not talking about them to anyone who’ll listen.  Of course, eventually you will have to tell potential investors about your fantastic new concept in a very vigorous and forceful way.  That’s the only way to fundraise and grow the business.

But before you begin presenting your ideas in public, make sure you’ve consulted with an attorney who can help you with non-disclosure agreements and other legal tools that can protect your sensitive information.

 

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Are you looking to buy a used car to save some money on your next purchase? Some cars don’t retain value well once they are sold. In fact, an average car loses up to 11 percent of its value once it’s driven off the lot. Some cars, however, are known to stand the test of time. Consider the following used car models next time you head out to buy a used vehicle.

2005-2008 Pontiac Vibe

pontiac-vibeImage via Flickr by nixternal

This generation of Pontiac Vibes make a fantastic vehicle for any commuter. The small hatchback car features a generous 19.3 cubic feet of cargo space, but when you fold the back seat down, you’ll get a full 54.1 cubic feet of cargo space, making it a great small car for transporting goods. The better news is that the 2005-2007 models all get up to 36 mpg highway while the 2008 model gets 33 mpg highway, making it a money-saving vehicle on the road.

As if that isn’t good enough, the Pontiac Vibe has been known to last with high miles on it. If you’re looking for one of these vehicles made during these years, aim for the 2007 model if you can as it has received favorable reviews across the board.

2007-2008 Hyundai Sonata

hyundai-sonataImage via Flickr by order_242

The Hyundai Sonata is a vehicle best known for its affordable luxury. With the 2007-2008 models, you’ll find a nice car at a price you can afford. With generous gas mileage — 34 on the 2007 and 31 on the 2008 — and features like heated seats, this comfortable ride will leave you enjoying the commute. While the car does not come with some of the features you’d expect on newer models like navigation and Bluetooth capabilities, it is a comfortable sedan with plenty of trunk space that will deliver a high level of practicality.

2004-2007 Toyota Prius

toyota-priusImage via Flickr by EarlRShumaker

Are you interested in getting a used vehicle with great gas mileage? Known to last for well over 200,000 miles, the 2004-2007 Prius models are a great used car pick for people who want fantastic gas mileage with a long-lasting vehicle. Each model in this range is rated at 60 mpg city and 51 mpg highway, making it a wonderful purchase for people who drive a lot and would like to save money on gas. While prices will vary drastically depending on the condition of the vehicle, you could find a 2004-2007 Toyota Prius for under $10,000. Use a KBB used cars search to find one in your area.

You can also search for used cars on websites like AutoVolo to give you an idea of the price you can expect to pay for specific vehicles.

2005 Volvo S60

The 2005 Volvo S60 is worth checking out if you’re on the market for something cheap yet luxurious. Kelly Blue Book rates the retail value of this car under $5,000, so you could certainly get a great deal. The upside is that it features luxury options like a posh interior and unique Swedish styling. With mpg rated at 29 highway, you’ll get fair gas mileage at a highly affordable initial price. Additional perks include generous trunk space, impressive safety features, and heated seats.

2007 Chevrolet Silverado 1500

chevrolet-silverado-1500Image via Flickr by .Great Grandma & Grandpa T.

If a truck good for transporting heavy items is more your speed, the 2007 Chevrolet Silverado 1500 is a great choice. You’ll get up to 21 mpg highway, which is pretty decent for a truck this size. With active fuel management features, the vehicle gets slightly more enhanced fuel economy than its counterparts. The great thing about the 2007 model is that it came with remodeled updates, so you’ll get a slightly better version than some of the older ones but at the same affordable price.

Whatever type of car you need, buying a used vehicle, whether from a dealer or a private seller, can cut your initial costs drastically. With one of the above mentioned vehicles, you can further save money via great gas mileage while ensuring that you’re getting a long-lasting vehicle. Which type of vehicle are you thinking about getting for your next used car purchase?

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Cycling should be an activity that everyone is able to enjoy safely; however, cyclists need to be aware of the dangers on the road. After all, 80% of cycling fatalities are caused by Heavy Goods Vehicles (HGVs) turning left at a junction and colliding with a cyclist.

Did you know that 64% of Londoners believe that it is too dangerous to cycle on the city’s street? That’s according to a 2014 survey by the UK’s Department of Transport. However, it doesn’t need to be this way. With improved awareness of some of the dangers that are on the road, cyclists can adapt to ensure that they stay safe.

Cycling has plenty of benefits – it’s a fantastic way to stay fit on your commute into work and it can save a fortune on train fares! This makes it even more of a shame that so many are put off from cycling on a regular basis.

What hazards should I look for?

As mentioned above, HGVs are the biggest dangers for cyclists on the road. This is largely to do with the fact that larger vehicles often have significant blind spots which can make it very difficult for drivers to spot other road users immediately around them. The onus should be on cyclists to make themselves visible to other road users, especially those in larger vehicles. Maintaining eye contact is a good way to start; this shows them that you are aware of their position and, in turn, they will take more notice of you.

When you are waiting at traffic lights, cyclists may want to consider moving further forward so that they are not directly in front of a HGV. This is because the driver usually sits high above the road and may not realize that there is a cyclist directly in front of them.

Similarly, cyclists need to take extra care when they are approaching a junction, even if they are in a designated cycle lane. It may be the case that anther road user is preparing to cross into the cycle lane to make a turn. A bike accident claims specialist explains that it is crucial that cyclists are aware of the movements of any HGVs as they approach a junction. These vehicles have to make a wide turn and it can often seem as though they are planning to carry on straight ahead; however, it is worth keeping a safe distance in case they are preparing to turn as your path will become blocked and you could find yourself in a hazardous position.

Cycle Claim Line adds that although cyclists are less likely to be involved in a collision with an HGV than a car, when this does occur, they are at far greater risk of serious injury or death.

Even if the road appears clear, smart cyclists are still on alert in case an unexpected hazard appears ahead of them. Assertive cyclists ensure that they stay safe as they are able to spot potential dangers quickly with plenty of time to react in an appropriate and safe manner to avoid the hazard. When cycling past parked cars it is wise to maintain a distance of around a metre just in case a pedestrian steps out into the road or a door suddenly opens unexpectedly.

Any cyclists who are concerned about riding amongst heavy traffic can consult a variety of apps and websites, including CycleStreets, to discover new and quieter routes to their destination. This is a great way for newer cyclists to gradually build their confidence before tackling busier routes as they can slowly introduce themselves to less traffic-ridden routes.

It’s important to point out that cycling is a safe activity. The UK’s Department of Transport found that people are more likely to die when walking than cycling! For every billion miles cycled, 31 cyclists were killed whereas 36 pedestrians died over the same distance. Also, four times as many motorcyclists were killed in accidents over that distance. These figures indicate that as long as cyclists ensure that they are assertive and possess the skills and understanding required to cycle safely, then there is no need to be too scared to ride.

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Experts have revealed that the Leaning Tower of Pisa, known worldwide for its precarious tilt, it’s now going straight.

The tower’s Surveillance Group, which monitors restoration work, said the landmark is “stable and very slowly reducing its lean.”

The 186ft medieval monument has been straightened by 1.5in over the past two decades, the team said.

Professor Salvatore Settis explained: “It’s as if it’s had two centuries taken off its age.”

Nunziante Squeglia, a professor of geotechnics at the University of Pisa who works with the surveillance team, added: “What counts the most is the stability of the bell tower, which is better than expected.”

Image source Wikipedia

Colosseum of Rome is taking the place of the Leaning Tower of Pisa

Back in 1990, the Leaning Tower of Pisa was closed to the public for the first time in 800 years amid fears it could be on the verge of toppling. At the time, it was tilting by 4.5m from the vertical.

An international committee led by Prof Michele Jamiolkowski, a Polish expert, worked to stabilize the tower between 1993 and 2001.

By the end, the tower’s tilt had been corrected by 45cm, at a cost of $240 million.

The lean is as old as the tower itself, having crept in five years after construction began in 1173.

The layer of clay and sand the tower is built on is softer on the south side than the north – so by the time builders got to the third storey, shifting soil had unsettled its foundations.

However, while engineers may ultimately take credit for rescuing the relic, visitors can rest assured it’s still available for the obligatory pictures…


Mold is not unique to any business, building or structure. Mold can grow anywhere, affecting everyone from tenants, pets and employees to homeowners, property managers and building owners. In recent decades, increased awareness of the dangers of mold has made this spongy fungi more unwelcome than ever.

In fact, in an Institute of Medicine study on building dampness and mold, experts found that about half of U.S. homes have visible evidence of a dampness problem or mold contamination. They also found that 45 percent of U.S. office buildings had water leaks and 30 percent of schools had plumbing problems—all of which provide fertile breeding grounds for mold.

So what does this mean for building owners? To help you understand its effects, let’s break down everything you need to know about mold exposures.

Image source Pixabay

What are molds?

Molds are fungi that are commonly found both indoors and outdoors. According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control, no one knows how many species of fungi exist—but estimates range from tens of thousands to three hundred thousand or more.

While some molds can produce toxins, the mold itself is not toxic or poisonous. The term mildew refers to a particular mold—a white or grayish compound that often grows in shower stalls or bathrooms.

Where is mold found?
You can find mold in almost every environment. While mold grows best in warm, damp conditions (where mold is most likely to spread and reproduce), spores—the reproductive unit of molds and other fungi—can also survive in harsh, dry conditions that don’t usually support mold growth. Common locations include:

  • Inside: Showers, basements or other high-humidity places.
  • Outside: Damp or shady areas or spots with decomposing leaves.

What are the health dangers of mold exposures?
Here are some of the things you can expect from mold exposure:

  • Mild sensitivity. Some people are a little sensitive to molds and may have symptoms such as red, itchy eyes, wheezing, a stuffy nose or irritated skin.
  • Severe reactions. If someone is allergic to mold or suffers from asthma, their symptoms may be more dramatic. Severe reactions are also common in workers who have been around large amounts of mold for extended periods of time — like farmers working near moldy hay, or hospitality employees who spend a lot of time in an infected building.

    These symptoms may include shortness of breath or fever. In some cases, mold or dampness can lead to the development of asthma.

  • Weakened immune reactions. Mold infections are most common in people with weakened immune systems. If someone is receiving cancer treatment, medicines to suppress their immune system or need or recently received an organ transplant, that person is at much higher risk.

How mold affects property owners
If an owner does not prevent, contain or remediate mold properly, the consequences can be grave. Here are a few of the things you risk if your property has high levels of mold exposures:

  • If mold has infested a property, tenants may choose to seek legal action—especially if the mold is toxic. Toxic mold lawsuits are known to be very complicated and can pull in a wide array of plaintiffs, defendants, witnesses and specific medical and scientific experts. This can quickly become debilitatingly expensive. Mold in the Broward County (Fla.) Courthouse, for example, led to a $166,500 settlement payment and another 19 lawsuits.
  • High costs. Often, professionals can clean up mold before it becomes a health hazard. But in other cases, particularly if you cannot identify the source of the mold growth, it can become a persistent, costly challenge. Not only will you have to clean and remove the mold, but mold removal companies may have to correct your moisture issue by installing proper ventilation and drainage systems.
  • Property damage. Due to its ability to decompose matter, mold can drastically alter the appearance and structure of your home—ultimately lowering the property’s value. Few buyers or renters are interested in investing in facilities with mold infestations (without a healthy discount, at least).

  • Damaged reputation. Even if you go through all of the processes and procedures to properly remove mold, human fear will kick in. Most people won’t want to be in a place known for mold problems—which means your business, and reputation, could take a severe hit.

When it comes to limiting mold exposures and the serious damages that occur with it, be proactive—test for air quality, get your ventilation system inspected and make sure you’re adequately insured. If you do suspect you have a mold problem, it’s crucial that you address it right away.

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Photo Getty Images

Michelle Obama has released a memoir in which she reveals that she had a miscarriage and used in vitro fertilization to conceive both children, Malia and Sasha.

In the book, Becoming, the former first lady reveals difficulties about her marriage and pregnancy with her two daughters.

In an interview with ABC’s Good Morning America, Michelle Obama said that she felt “lost and alone” after her miscarriage 20 years ago.

The first African-American first lady also criticized President Donald Trump for putting her family’s safety at risk.

Michelle and Barack Obama sought couples therapy, she also revealed for the first time in her 426-page book, which will be released on November 13.

Following publication, Michelle Obama will tour ten cities.

Michelle Obama Attacks Trump’s Loosened Nutritional Standards in Schools

Michelle Obama Last Interview: “America’s Outlook Had Changed Since Donald Trump’s Election”

Donald Trump Launches Attack on Michelle Obama

Michelle Obama, a former lawyer and hospital administrator, told ABC that after her miscarriage: “I felt like I failed because I didn’t know how common miscarriages were because we don’t talk about them.”

She added that “it’s important to talk to young mothers about the fact that miscarriages happen”.

The former first lady also said that when she was around 34 years old, she realized that “the biological clock is real” and that “egg production is limited”, which made her decide to seek in-vitro fertilization.

She told Robin Roberts: “I think it’s the worst thing that we do to each other as women, not share the truth about our bodies and how they work.”

Michelle Obama revealed that the couple’s relationship struggled at times, especially after her husband joined the state legislature, leaving her at home where she was forced to administer IVF shots herself.

“Marriage counseling for us was one of those ways where we learned how to talk out our differences,” she said.

“I know too many young couples who struggle and think that somehow there’s something wrong with them. And I want them to know that Michelle and Barack Obama, who have a phenomenal marriage and who love each other, we work on our marriage.

“And we get help with our marriage when we need it.”

Michelle Obama also describes falling in love with the former president one summer night in Chicago.

In Becoming, Michelle Obama says she would “never forgive” Donald Trump for championing the “birther” theory that her husband was not born in the US, according to excerpts obtained by media.

She wrote: “The whole [birther] thing was crazy and mean-spirited, of course, its underlying bigotry and xenophobia hardly concealed.”

“What if someone with an unstable mind loaded a gun and drove to Washington? What if that person went looking for our girls? Donald Trump, with his loud and reckless innuendos, was putting my family’s safety at risk. And for this I’d never forgive him.”

Michelle Obama said she reacted in shock to Donald Trump’s presidential victory and “tried to block it all out”.

Before departing the White House for Paris on November 9, President Trump addressed some of the quotes from Michelle Obama’s book.

He said: “Michelle Obama got paid a lot of money to write a book and they always insist you come up with controversy. I’ll give you some back.”

Referring to his predecessor, Barack Obama, President Trump said: “I’ll never forgive him for what he did to our United States military by not funding it properly.”

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As Christmas draws ever nearer, a lot of our thoughts start to lean towards buying presents. There are a lot of lauded heroes around this time, from the bar and catering staff working to put on your Christmas party, to those in retail keeping their shops open right up until Christmas Eve and reopening for the Boxing Day sales. Yet one category of hero that often gets overlooked but are even more important in these days where online delivery is king, are the couriers. From customers to businesses, without them we’d all be stuck.

Helping Out Customers

According to research, in 2017 at least 12 million parcels were expected to go missing around Christmas. This was a follow up to a survey that claimed one in five people had ordered gifts which failed to arrive, with many consumers complaining about delays or products arriving in a damaged condition. This can ruin Christmas if customers’ presents, especially for their children, don’t arrive in time or turn up broken.

Couriers are under a lot of stress and pressure over the festive period, which is why choosing a reliable one is essential. Yet they can also be that lifeline for thousands of consumers who are either too busy to get out to the shops and do their Christmas shopping or leave it too late. Without the convenience of couriers, it would be a lot harder for many retail customers.

Image source Max Pixel

Supporting SMEs

The festive period, from Black Friday onwards, offers a lot of opportunity for many businesses. For start-ups and SMEs, it can be a great time to earn extra exposure, entice new customers with exciting deals and jump on the Cyber Monday, January sales and Christmas bandwagon.

New customers may try out an SME if they spot a good deal at this time especially and there are many factors which can help make them return. Price and quality are two important elements but so is the speed and reliability of delivery, which is why using a reputable courier service is vital for SMEs.

Enhancing Big Business Growth

Selecting the right courier for your business will depend on everything from the size of your company, what products you sell, in what regions and any specific delivery options you want to provide (next day, time specific etc.). For big, established online retailers relying on couriers is just as important over Christmas as that’s when many aim to hit sales targets.

Losing parcels, late deliveries and damaged goods arriving can quickly lead to even the most well-established businesses gaining a poor reputation. Couriers are the unsung heroes over Christmas who can help to maintain and even improve this for all sorts of companies.

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Image source Wikipedia

US Marine Corps veteran Ian David Long has been identified as the killer of 12 people in a busy bar in California, including a police officer, officials say.

The shooting began at 23:20 local time on November 7 at the Borderline Bar and Grill in Thousand Oaks about 40 miles north-west of Los Angeles.

The 28-year-old gunman is suspected to having mental health issues.

At least 200 people were reportedly inside the bar, which was hosting a student line-dancing night.

Earlier this year, police mental health professionals cleared Ian David after he was found behaving “irrationally” at his home, said authorities.

Police say the suspect was dressed in black, and forced his way into the bar after shooting the bouncer.

Pittsburgh Synagogue Attack: President Trump Visits Massacre Scene Amid Protests

Pittsburgh Synagogue Attack: 11 People Shot Dead During Sabbath Service

A college country music night was under way when the suspect apparently threw a smoke grenade before opening fire, witnesses say.

Police say Ian David used a legally owned .45 caliber Glock semi-automatic handgun, which had an extended magazine that is illegal in the state of California.

The extended magazine allowed the gun to carry more than its typical 11-bullet capacity.

Police say they do not yet know how many shots were fired, or whether the suspect reloaded during the attack.

People escaped the bar by using chairs to break windows, while others reportedly sheltered inside the venue’s toilets.

At least 10 people are known to have been wounded and others are self-reporting with injuries at local hospitals.

One survivor said he and his friends also escaped death last year in the deadliest US mass shooting of modern times, when a gunman killed 58 people at a Las Vegas country music concert.

Popular among students, the Borderline Bar and Grill is close to California Lutheran University, Pepperdine University and Moorpark College.

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What do you know about the topic of your piece of writing? Spare more time to think about the meaning of the theme of your essay once again. Are you well enough acquainted with what you are going to write about? Can you suggest anything new and inimitable according to the format of this issue? If not, before starting the work on the paper, you need to do the research for an essay. Or, you may just release yourself from this daily routine by ordering a paper on the professional website.

How to Do the Research?

Collect all the topics for the essay and write them down. Start remembering examples from your life experience that can be summed up under these topics. Write everything that comes to your mind. The following questions will help you to concentrate. Is it enough the life experience and reading knowledge to make up a fully completed essay structure? Do not forget that different views, collage formulations always exciting. Find the comments of different world minds upon this topic, join the discussion with other authors or, vice versa to raise the baton. Your introduction paragraph for a research paper has already given the impression of a long and hard work, it should be astonished by erudition and stymie with an innovative thinking. A good habit is to read a book with a pencil in your hands. If you are interested in any idea, though it can be tagged, and subsequently, make an extract. Materials from newspapers, magazines, websites and disks, textbooks, etc are taken in the same way.

Using a quotation in your statement, indicate who it belongs to. Essays, in which the quotations are appropriate, have got a reference to articles, a research, facts, are more reasoned and deeper in content.

Researching Sources

The topic of the essay will tell where you should look for the right material. Usually, students use the library, internet resources, dictionaries, and directories. View means editing text with a focus on quality and efficiency. The quality of the essay writing consists of four main components: high-quality thinking with reference to evidence, clarity, literacy, and correctness. You need to clearly formulate the ideas you want to express, otherwise you will not be able to convey these ideas and additional information to readers. You do not have to try to say everything at once. Make a blow of everything that sits in your head. Encourage readers with sparkling expressions and unexpected facts. Do everything you can to make the reading of completed essays was extremely enjoyable and interesting, while also being cognitive. This is especially valuable.

Choosing the Right Evidence

During the essay research process, you have not only studied the necessary information according to your topic, but also choose the right evidence to support your arguments. Your purpose is to gather information and opinions on a topic, to do it, you need to read a lot of materials. Researching an essay identify which books will be relevant to this subject. Choose your books carefully; because it’s not the best way to waste your spare time for reading information that you will never use. Review the contents of the book and if the relevant information is absent, your task is to find another source.

During the reading, keep in mind that it’s not necessary to read the whole book. Otherwise, it might be more effective to skim read or scan the chapter for relevant headings and words. Don’t rely on the same source or author too much for creating your custom paper. Doing this will make your work look unoriginal and repetitive.

Three Whales

As soon as you spoke to yourself about what you want to tell in your verbal masterpiece, write down on the paper the main directions and thoughts. Choose from them three the most successful theses, which will become the basis of the essay. If there are more ramifications, you risk appearing superficial and incomprehensible. If less, then it’s loopy and conservative. The figure “three” has long been recognized as magical, do not ignore it.

The Skeleton Is First, then the Skin

And everything under the skin, respectively. We’re talking about briefly outlining the course of your thoughts. Write down one or two sentences in each paragraph, read slowly, and then mold the snowball of your thoughts. Add the necessary examples and details, wind up information, use stylistic means.

Innovation

Scientists say that everything has already been written down before us. There is an essay genre. There is a theme of love. Are you at a dead end? Is there an only way to order an assignment on a paper writing service? By no means. There is a wise saying that, the many people are in the world, the many self-conceit. And here one should not imitate the great thinkers and try to retell their wise thoughts. It is better to take the easier topic, but suggest looking at it from such an angle that no one has ever shown it before. Do not hang labels on yourself and immediately become Kant or Freud. Writing research paper, you should be yourself and spend time with yourself, on your uniqueness. Read other people’s works, but when it comes to writing, everyone is for himself. The academic essay expresses the individual impressions and considerations of the author on a particular occasion or subject and does not pretend to be comprehensive interpreted. You don’t have to be similar to somebody else. Otherwise, everything is useless.

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Image source MaxPixel

Safety in the modern world is much different than 100 years ago. Even 50 years ago, you could meet new people and let your kids run around and play unsupervised. It can take a lot of effort to keep your family safe with the many dangers that are common in daily life. Part of remaining safe is to be knowledgeable about the people you spend time with. When you are going on a date, meeting new neighbors, or sending your child out to play it is pertinent that you know the background of the other people. There are some easy precautions you can take to lead a safer life.

Background Checks

The internet has made it very convenient to find out about new people in your life. You do not have to go down to the courthouse to pull records anymore. A simple people search can help you become more aware of your surroundings. You can find out basic information like address and family members or you can conduct a full background check. This helps you to find out if the person in question has committed any crimes. You can then decide on whether you feel safe continuing the relationship.

Proceed with Caution

You should be careful about who you make friends with. It is not always safe to invite people to your home when you first meet them. It is nice to make new friends, however, there are a lot of dangerous people in the world. Do not feel bad about protecting yourself and your family. It is the right thing to do. If you meet someone at work or while out running errands, talk to them on the phone first. You can even plan a get together in a public place and bring other friends along. Spend time talking to them and other people they may know. Hold off on bringing them around your kids or home until you have more information.

Never Assume

It can be easy to assume a certain person is safe because of how they present themselves. You may think that a woman with a baby is someone to be trusted, for example. This is not always an accurate way to judge character, however. You should think about common stereotypes and remember they are not always true. Not all the parents in a neighborhood may have a clear criminal record. You need to check before you allow your children to go into a person’s home or to be driven somewhere. You may find out that a person has a citation for drinking and driving.

Today’s modern world calls for more extreme safety measures. When you get in the habit of staying safe, however, you can easily take care of your family. Always find out full names of people you meet so you can do proper people searches. You should also talk on the phone and meet in public places when you make new friends. This is especially important for those going on dates. Put in a genuine effort to remain safe in these modern times.


In a competitive e-commerce space, it takes more than a previous purchase for a customer to remain loyal to your brand. More products, price points and shopping experiences exist than ever. As a result, consumer preferences shape the market.

Today’s consumers want a simple, secure, pleasant shopping experience. And when something goes wrong, they want it to be addressed quickly. Anything that falls short means the customer probably won’t return.

Already using one of the best e-commerce website builders to create your store? Experiment with the host of different free and paid apps that can enhance your store experience. Here are the five best customer support apps on Shopify.

Facebook Chat by Beeketing

Online consumers are more open to interacting via the internet than having a phone conversation. The Facebook Chat app gives stores the ability to live chat with customers via Messenger right from the Shopify store platform. The app itself installs with no coding and requires minimal resources to run. Customize your chat settings, such as color and chat icon, to raise brand awareness with customers and move them from conversation to purchase. The developer, Beeketing, offers several other apps to grow a store’s customer base.

Free

Zendesk

Zendesk is one of the premier customer support software companies, so it’s no surprise their Shopify app is so popular. Zendesk gives Shopify stores a widget to display on every store page that helps customers get in touch with support directly. The support platform itself makes customer interaction easier, as support team members have clear, customized visibility to relevant customer data. If you’ve yet to implement a successful customer support tool, a tried-and-true solution like Zendesk is bound to fill your need.

30-day free trial

$18.99/mo

AfterShip Returns Center

E-commerce return rates can exceed 30 percent depending on the product. Even slight mismanagement of the reverse logistics process can mean considerable profit margin loss. AfterShip gives e-commerce stores a branded page to streamline self-service returns and facilitate notifications to customers.

Using an app like AfterShip gives your store credibility and can help impress customers with your return experience, which makes them more likely to buy from you in the future. AfterShip offers language switching, zones and routing rules to be set, as well as the option to export return data to CSV.

5 returns = Free

20 returns = $9/mo

100 returns = $29/mo

Easy Contact Form

To become a prosperous e-commerce merchant, you must gain trust and be transparent with customers. One essential portal that always should be left open is a way for customers to get in touch at any time of day. The Easy Contact Form app isn’t just one tool, but a bundle of over 25 free and paid marketing tools. Integrate social buttons to boost your follower count, integrate custom slide boxes to promote a sale or develop a straightforward ‘Contact Us’ page with a custom background image. ‘Easy’ lives up its name by integrating your social accounts and mailing service to ensure the contacts you collect end up in your marketing touchpoints.

Free tools available

14-day Free Trial for premium tools

Wishlist Plus

If every visitor who added something to a cart or a list ended up purchasing, your e-commerce store would grow like wild roses. But this isn’t reality. The internet can steal shoppers’ attention pretty quickly. And once they leave, there’s no guarantee they’re coming back. That’s where Wishlist Plus offers stores a lot of value. Wishlist+ integrates with any Shopify store theme and offers numerous API customization options to better blend into your shopping experience. Include an ‘add to Wishlist’ button on your site to capture insightful data about your customers, which can then be used to send re-engagement emails and win customers back.

100 wishlist items per/mo = Free

1,000 wishlist items per/mo = $9.99/mo

10,000 wishlist items per/mo = $29.99/mo

50,000 wishlist items per/mo = $59.99/mo

You can’t depend on new customers to fuel your store’s growth. The way to make long-term strides is to build your repeat-customer base. But the only way to do that is to provide stellar experiences. Start with one or more of the five best customer support apps on Shopify when shoring up your store’s customer service, returns process and opportunities for re-engagement.

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A South Carolina lottery ticket holder has won the largest Mega Millions jackpot in US history.

Mega Millions confirmed there was one winner for the whopping $1.6 billion prize.

The jackpot numbers were: 28, 70, 5, 62, 65, with a Mega Ball of 5. The odds of choosing those numbers were said to be one in more than 300 million.

Mega Millions was created in 2002 and has seen a number of changes to the rules over the years that have reduced the odds of winning, leading to larger jackpots.

Mega Millions Jackpot to Hit $1 Billion, Biggest in History

What to do after you hit the Mega Millions jackpot

Tickets for the Mega Millions draw are sold in 44 states, the DC and the US Virgin Islands and there had not been a top prize winner since July.

Gordon Medenica, the lead director of Mega Millions Group, said: “The moment we’ve been waiting for finally arrived, and we couldn’t be more excited.

“This is truly a historic occasion. We’re so happy for the winner, and we know the South Carolina Education Lottery can’t wait to meet the lucky ticket holder.”

The winner can decide to take a cash payout of $913 million after tax, or opt to have it paid out in installments over 29 years.

Mega Millions said October 23 draw saw 36 people win second prize, and 419 win the $10,000 third prize.

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Friday night’s Mega Millions jackpot is expected to hit a staggering $1 billion, continuing a trend of giant jackpots.

It is the second-largest lottery prize in US history and joins 5 other top 10 drawings in the last 3 years.

The previous record of $656 million was set on March 30, 2012. The incredible jackpot comes after no ticket matched all six numbers drawn Tuesday, October 16 – the white balls 3, 45, 49, 61 and 69, plus the gold Mega Ball 9.

The jackpot has soared since it was last won on July 24, when a California office pool of 11 co-workers shared $543 million, the largest prize ever won on a single ticket in the game. Three other Mega Millions jackpots have been won this year – $451 million on January 5 (FL), $533 million on March 30 (NJ), and $142 million on May 4 (OH).

Mega Millions $640 M jackpot, the biggest in world history, has at least one winner

Mirlande Wilson sued by McDonald’s workers for losing Mega Millions ticket

What to do after you hit the Mega Millions jackpot

Lottery officials changed the odds in recent years to lessen the chance of winning a jackpot, which in turn increased the opportunity for top prizes to reach stratospheric levels.

States have generally reported increased Mega Millions and Powerball sales since the change.

A total of 4,527,495 winning tickets at all prize levels came out of Tuesday’s drawing.

There were plenty of winners on October 16 as players from around the country jumped into the game at record levels.

Nine tickets matched the five white balls to win the game’s second prize. One of them, sold in Texas, included the optional Megaplier (available in most states for an extra $1 purchase) and is worth $5 million! The other eight are million-dollar tickets – two were sold in Pennsylvania and one each in CA, FL, GA, KY, NJ and NY.

One hundred tickets matched four white balls plus the Mega Ball for the $10,000 third prize; 12 of those are actually worth $50,000 each because they included the optional Megaplier.

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Image source Wikimedia

One of the accusers of Hollywood producer Harvey Weinstein was told by police to delete any files from her phone that she wanted to keep private, prosecutors have admitted.

Assistant District Attorney Joan Illuzzi-Orbon said the complainant was told by a detective to “delete anything she did not want anyone to see”.

Harvey Weinstein’s lawyer said the development “undermines” the case.

He faces charges involving alleged assaults on two women. The Hollywood producer denies the charges.

Joan Illuzzi-Orbon wrote in a letter to Harvey Weinstein’s lawyer, Ben Brafman: “My office had asked Complainant 2 to produce any and all cell phones that she might have used during the time she interacted with the defendant.”

However, she adds that the woman said she was then advised to remove files “before providing the phones to our office”.

Despite this advice, the woman still provided the phones used to communicate with Harvey Weinstein “without any deletions”, Joan Illuzzi-Orbon said.

Ben Brafman later released a statement in response to the letter, saying the news “further undermines the integrity of an already deeply flawed indictment of Mr. Weinstein”.

The lawyer earlier requested that the entire case be dismissed.

#MeToo: Harvey Weinstein Expected to Surrender to New York Police

Annabella Sciorra Accuses Harvey Weinstein of Rape and Daryl Hannah Shares a Story

Natassia Malthe Accuses Harvey Weinstein of Raping Her after BAFTA Awards Ceremony

Last week a charge against Harvey Weinstein by actress Lucia Evans was dismissed by a judge in New York after she was said to have given a differing account of events.

Hervey Weinstein has been accused of assault by more than 70 women.

The accusations against the producer helped awaken the #MeToo movement, which has seen hundreds of women accusing high-profile men in business, government and entertainment of sexual abuse and harassment.

Harvey Weinstein, 66, has agreed to wear a GPS tracker and to surrender his passport.

The film mogul also faces additional investigations in Los Angeles and London, and by the US federal government.

Harvey Weinstein, who has been on $1 million bail since his arrest in May, denies having non-consensual contacts, his lawyers have previously said.


Image source Pixabay

The main purpose of website builder platforms is to simplify the entire website creation process. It is now possible to create a website without much technical knowledge and design talent with their drag-and-drop technology and professionally-designed templates.

Why Use a Website Builder?

Website builders benefit people with little or no technical and design skills. Using these platforms, your website can also be edited and updated at any time.  It is also easy to regularly maintain the website with its easy-to-use interface.

Top Website Builder Platforms

Using a proper website builder, you will be able to create a decent website for your business and have it up and running in no time. Here’s a list of 5 of the best website builder platforms:

  1. com

Wix.com has been consistently voted as the top choice for overall the best all-around website builder. With this website builder software, you can build just about any site imaginable – from a simple blog to an e-commerce store.

Wix has endless customization options. Websites that depend on ad revenue, such as what banner advertising provides, need these numerous design options that provide the necessary screen space and layout for selling ads.

  1. Site123

This simple and straightforward website builder has at least a few hundred templates to choose from. It also delivers a strong uptime at 99.99%. With Site123, everything is tailor-made and customizable. The platform even has plans for creating multiple pages.

Its huge dedicated help section heavily supports e-commerce stores. This is a big plus for website builders who need to be able to design websites that can produce             ad revenue and still meet the needs of visitors. Ads can easily be integrated by those who want to make extra income online through marketing platforms such as Click2sell.co.               

Weebly

Many users claim that Weebly is the easiest website builder to use. It could be used by either growing start-ups or more established businesses. Its intuitive editor makes it easy to customize site options.

Weebly is one of the most versatile website builder platforms because it is compatible with every device. It is also full of e-commerce solutions such as automatic tax calculator, digital gift cards, and Paypal integration.

  1. GoDaddy

GoDaddy’s different design templates are grouped into different categories based on the site you want to build.

One great thing about this site builder is that it offers a free trial for one month. It also offers a great customer support, with its 24/7 phone availability, Live Chat, Forum, and Knowledgebase.

  1. IMCreator

IMCreator has a user-friendly “point and click” interface where you can build e-stores, blogs, and e-commerce websites with a simple click. This is a scalable platform, supporting both single page and multi-page layouts.

Since it has unlimited web hosting and domain services, this is a great option for start-ups. One unique feature of IMCreator is XPRS, which helps users build a website with the use of beautifully-constructed ready-made blocks.

This list of 5 of the top website builders all have one thing in common: they know that there are three most important factors that users appreciate: usability, uptime, and speed. Aside from all of these factors, they should also have top-notch customer support should you need additional assistance.

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Image source NASA Earth Observatory

At least 17 deaths have been confirmed so far in a swath of Hurricane Michael’s destruction stretching up to Virginia.

Rescuers have still to search the worst-affected areas of Florida’s flattened Mexico Beach.

Michael, one of the most powerful hurricanes in US history, struck on October 10 with 155mph winds.

So far at least 8 people are confirmed dead in Florida, 5 in Virginia, 3 in North Carolina and one in Georgia.

Rescuers using heavy machinery and trained dogs found the body of a man, the latest reported fatality, while searching through rubble on October 12 in Mexico Beach.

However, Brock Long, administrator of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), said the number of deaths was expected to rise as teams combed through badly hit areas in Mexico Beach, Port St. Joe and Panama City.

Residents of Mexico Beach had been under a mandatory evacuation order, but it is believed at least 285 people among a population of 1,000 had stayed behind to ride out the storm.

Hurricane Michael Hits Florida Killing at Least Two People

Florida Senator Marco Rubio said: “You hope that somehow at the last minute a bunch of people got up and left or went somewhere else.”

Hundreds of people are still unaccounted for across the area, but this may simply reflect an inability to communicate with relatives, with mobile phone coverage out in many areas.

Florida Governor Rick Scott said as he visited Mexico Beach on October 12: “It’s like a bomb went off. It’s like a war zone.”

The governor said more than 1,700 rescue workers had been deployed.

Mexico Beach Mayor Al Cathey said: “When you walk down and see this… your emotions run away. This is just a small unique coastal community.”

Many homes on the affected Florida coastline suffered storm surges of 12-14ft.

The residents of Mexico Beach, those who stayed and those who evacuated and have now returned, were simply trying to come to terms with the destruction.

Thousands of people were still in emergency centers on October 12.

Distribution centers have begun to spring up, but many residents remain desperate for basic services. Long lines had formed in some areas for fuel, food and water.

There are fears of unrest in poorer areas of affected towns and cities. Military personnel could be seen guarding one store in Panama City.

A spokesman for the Tyndall Air Force Base told the 3,600 men and women stationed there not to come back following their mandatory evacuation, with runways and buildings devastated.

At least 33 of its 55 F-22 stealth fighters, which each cost $339 million, had been flown out ahead of the storm.

The air force said some planes remained for maintenance reasons, although it would not confirm the number or type. A spokesman said damage was likely but had still to be assessed.

Hundreds of thousands of people remain without power in Florida, Georgia and Virginia, and in some parts it could be weeks before it is fully restored.

An insurance company, Karen Clark & Company, estimated Hurricane Michael caused about $8 billion of damage.

Michael is now a storm-force post-tropical low and is well out into the Atlantic Ocean, heading towards the Bay of Biscay.


Image source NASA Earth Observatory

Hurricane Michael, the third-strongest storm in recorded history to hit the US mainland, has battered north-west Florida killing two people, including one child, and flooding beach towns and snapping trees.

It made landfall on October 10 as a Category 4 storm with 155mph winds in Florida’s Panhandle region.

According to officials, the victims were killed by falling trees.

Hurricane Michael was downgraded to a tropical storm as it weakened over Georgia on its way to the Carolinas.

The US National Hurricane Center says that storm-surge warnings are in place between Panama City Beach and Keaton Beach in Florida, and between Ocracoke Inlet and Duck in North Carolina.

Hundreds of thousands of homes and businesses were left without electricity in Florida, Alabama and Georgia.

There are fears for people who ignored evacuation warnings in some of the areas now flooded.

According to Florida officials, a man was killed when he was crushed by a tree in Gadsden County while a child died when a tree fell on a home in Seminole County, Georgia.

The storm earlier reportedly killed at least 13 people as it passed through Central America: six in Honduras, four in Nicaragua and three in El Salvador.

Hurricane Michael made landfall near Mexico Beach, Florida, at around 14:00 on October 10.

Only the unnamed Labor Day hurricane, which hit Florida in 1935, and Hurricane Camille, which struck Mississippi in 1969, made landfall with greater intensity.

The Labor Day storm’s barometric pressure (the lower the number, the stronger the storm) was 892 millibars and Camille’s was 900, while Michael blew in with 919.

Hurricane Florence Sparks Evacuations in South Carolina and States of Emergency in North Carolina and Virginia

Hurricane Nate Hits Louisiana and Mississippi

Hurricane Maria Leaves Puerto Rico Without Power

Hurricane Michael was so powerful as it swept into Florida that it remained a hurricane as it moved further inland.

Its rapid intensification caught many by surprise, although the storm later weakened.

Only on October 9 Michael was a Category 2 hurricane but by October 10 it had reached borderline category five, the highest level.

More than 370,000 people in Florida were ordered to evacuate but officials believe many ignored the warning.

The storm knocked out power to a quarter of a million homes and businesses, as power lines were smashed by falling trees.

Federal Emergency Management Agency Director Brock Long said at the White House that he was especially concerned about buildings constructed before 2001, and not able to withstand such high winds.

President Donald Trump responded: “We just hope those structures can hold up.”

“And if not, that they’re not in those structures.”

States of emergency have been declared in all or parts of Florida, Alabama, Georgia and North Carolina.

Schools and state offices in the area are to remain shut this week and Florida has activated 3,500 National Guard troops.


Image source Wikipedia

A stretch limousine crash left 20 people dead in Schoharie County, New York, police say.

The vehicle was taking people to a party.

All 18 people in the limousine died along with two pedestrians in the incident on October 6 in the town of Schoharie, police confirmed.

Witnesses described seeing the SUV-style limousine shoot across a junction and hit another car before hitting the pedestrians.

The cause of the crash is unclear.

Officials did not name the victims, but a New York Times report says that they include four sisters and at least two pairs of newlyweds. All those killed were adults, police say.

According to Robert Sumwalt, the chairman of the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB), t is America’s deadliest transport crash since 2009.

Initial reports suggested the limousine had been taking the group to a wedding reception but later reports said they were travelling to a birthday party.

On October 7, New York police said that the passengers in the car, described as a 2001 Ford Excursion, would not have been required to wear seatbelts.

The driver was also killed in the crash, they said.

Justin Bieber charged with assaulting limousine driver in Toronto

Mercedes Williams, a reporter for local news site Spectrum News, tweeted images and footage from the scene of the incident, which took place near a store and cafe on routes 30 and 30A in Schoharie County.

The images show a long line of emergency services vehicles lining the roads, which were closed to traffic.

New York State Police Cpt. Richard O’Brien said several separate police units were involved in the investigation, including an identification unit and a drone team.

Authorities have said they expect investigators to be at the scene for at least five days.

Police said that a phone line had been set up to help assist relatives of the victims.

The NTSB is sending a team of investigators.

The location of the intersection is said to be in a hilly region and local authorities had only recently banned large trucks from using sections of the route.


Image source Pixabay

If you’re the kind of person that has a lot to say, then you’ve probably been thinking about starting a blog. An important factor that might motivate your further is the fact that monetizing your blog is an easy and rewarding process.

 

Here, we present you with the best give marketing strategies that will see you making income from your blog.

1. Engage your audience through a narrative

Your blog posts are a great way to capture the attention of a potential customer, through talking about a recent trip you took or discussing our favorite brownie recipe. By creating quality content for your readers, you can capture their attention with your narrative, whilst using marketing techniques to generate leads. One way to do this is through using affiliate marketing links throughout your text, which will earn you referral bonuses with online marketplaces.

2. Build up your search engine rankings

Where you sit in a search engine result for a particular keyword depends on how authoritative the search engine considers you. If you are a new site that no one links to yet, the search engine will place you towards the bottom of the list. However, if you share reciprocal links with highly regarded websites, you’ll see yourself starting to climb to the top of the rankings. This is called link building for SEO, and it’s not so hard to do. This is by far one of the most effective marketing strategies that you can engage in.

3. Offer coaching services

If you consider yourself to be a wealth of knowledge on a particular subject, then you should consider coaching others. Your blog can be a very important asset to people that want to learn very quickly. For instance, you can write an ebook that contains your practical guide to learning your skill, whether it be martial arts, cooking, sewing or photography. There’s a market for everything, so all you need to do is write.

4. Guest write for other blogs

One of the best ways to get your name out there as an authority in your field is to begin writing guest blog posts for other people’s blogs. Not only will you be able to share your knowledge, but you’ll gain a wider audience than the one you have already. You can also reciprocate by allowing other writers to feature on your blog from time to time. It’s all about networking.

5. Become an Influencer

If you’ve managed to start a rather successful blog, you can use your success to the advantage of others, by sponsoring products and services on your blog. This comes with a whole pile of benefits for you: not only will you make money from taking sponsorship deals, but you’ll end up with a ton of free stuff too.

Starting a blog can bring many positive aspects to your life. Not only can it give you a platform to speak your opinion and share your knowledge, but it can also generate an income stream for you. If you follow our guide and implement one or more of these marketing strategies, you’ll begin to turn your blog into a new job for yourself.


Image source Pixabay

A 7.5-magnitude earthquake has triggered a strong tsunami after hitting Indonesia’s coastal city of Palu, officials say.

Waves of up to 6.6ft high swept through Palu on Sulawesi island, not long after authorities had lifted a tsunami warning.

Video on social media shows people screaming and fleeing in panic and a mosque amongst the buildings damaged.

According to officials, five deaths have been reported, but it is not clear if those were as a result of the tsunami.

Last month, a series of earthquakes struck the Indonesian island of Lombok, killing hundreds of people – the biggest on August 5 killed more than 460.

The earthquake hit just off central Sulawesi at a depth of 6.2 miles just before 18:00 local time, the US Geological Survey said.

A tsunami warning was issued, but lifted within the hour.

The dramatic video footage of the tsunami hitting Palu shows the high waves sweeping away several buildings and then the large tilted mosque in the town, about 55 miles from the quake’s epicenter.

Dwikorita Karnawati, head of Indonesia’s meteorology and geophysics agency, BMKG, said the tsunami had receded.

The 2004 tsunami triggered by an earthquake off the Indonesian island of Sumatra killed 226,000 across the Indian Ocean, including more than 120,000 in Indonesia.

Indonesia is prone to earthquakes because it lies on the Ring of Fire – the line of frequent quakes and volcanic eruptions that circles virtually the entire Pacific rim.

More than half of the world’s active volcanoes above sea level are part of the ring.

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Image source Pixabay

Venezuela’s President Nicolás Maduro sparked outrage in his crisis-hit country after he was filmed eating in an upscale steak restaurant in Istanbul, Turkey.

The video shows Turkish celebrity chef Nusret Gokce, also known as “Salt Bae” carving meat in front of President Maduro and his wife, Cilia Flores, at Gokce’s Nusr-Et restaurant in Istanbul.

Almost two-thirds of Venezuelans have reported losing weight as shortages of food worsened in recent years.

Red meat is especially scarce.

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Chef Nusret Gokce posted three videos of Nicolas Maduro’s visit on Instagram, but has since deleted them.

The chef, who has been dubbed Salt Bae for his stylized way of sprinkling salt on his meat, is seen carving meat in front of the couple with dramatic flair.

President Maduro can be heard saying: “This is a once in a lifetime moment.”

Other videos show President Maduro smoking a cigar taken from a box with his name engraved on a plaque, and his wife holding up a T-shirt with the chef’s image.

Nusret Gokce owns several luxurious restaurants in the US, the Middle East and Turkey, and videos of him carving meat have been watched by millions of people.

The chef’s restaurants sell some cuts of meat for several hundred dollars.

Nicolas Maduro and his wife were in Istanbul on a stop-over from China, where the president was trying to drum up investment.

The videos were shared widely by critics of Nicolas Maduro.

Opposition leader Julio Borges, who is living outside Venezuela for fear of arrest, tweeted: “While Venezuelans suffer and die of hunger, Nicolás Maduro and Cilia Flores have a good time in one of the most expensive restaurants in the world, all with money stolen from the Venezuelan people.”

In Venezuela, 64% of people have reported losing significant amounts of weight, 24lbs on average, amid worsening food shortages.

Child malnutrition is at record levels and 2.3 million people have left Venezuela since 2014.

Nicolas Maduro spoke about the now-controversial lunch during a TV news conference, confirming that he had eaten there during his stopover from China.

He said: “Nusret attended to us personally. We were chatting, having a good time with him.”

President Maduro also said that chef Nusret Gokce had told him that “he loves Venezuela”. The chef has not commented.