Daily Archives: March 27, 2018

Everything About Iced Tea

Who doesn’t like to drink tea? Whether it’s early in the morning or after a long day at work, this beverage can pick you up whenever you’re feeling down. It’s an instant energizer and many people cannot do without it. There are different varieties of this beverage available and they all have a distinct quality about them. Iced tea has been around since the 1800’s and there are millions of people who prefer this to the usual steaming cup. If you are a staunch believer in serving and drinking hot tea, you still cannot ignore the fact that the iced variety has carved out a place for itself in today’s world.

Why has it become so popular?

Firstly, the fact that it is served chilled is a vital factor. In hot weather, you will usually grab an aerated drink to quench your thirst. These drinks have no other benefits other than the fact that they cool you down. You will not even think of drinking a steaming hot beverage on a sultry day. However, iced tea can be the perfect substitute for a soft drink! It’s cold, it’s fresh and it’s different. At a time when aerated drinks are facing a lot of scrutiny over the additives used, iced tea is a much safer bet.

People have written a lot about the health benefits of downing this beverage. Iced tea has health benefits that could fill a booklet! It has antioxidants that protect the human body from a variety of diseases. The antioxidants which are present in tea are called flavonoids. They protect us against cell damage and also help in reducing the risk of developing cancer. Iced tea, specifically, has been proven to keep breast, colon, stomach, and prostate cancer at bay. It also strengthens our immune system and reduces white-cell damage caused by smoking or drinking.

There are some good online stores that sell different varieties of iced tea. All you need to do is find a site which gives you value for money. The “Raspberry Cooler” is a big hit with adults and children alike. This unique flavor is available on select online stores and you can purchase six filters for just $8.95! The ‘Mango’ flavor is also quite popular and is a sweet black tea which leaves behind a slight taste of mango in the mouth of the drinker. There are loads of flavors to choose from!

Lionel And Bachmann Trains Are Leading The Toy Trains Hobby

If you are considering buying a model train set, one of the first choices you have to make is what brand to get. Since model train brands have been known to come and go, it is a good idea to select a popular brand that is more likely to be around for a long time.

Based on an analysis of Google searches where a model trains brand name was included in the search phrase, the most popular brands are Lionel trains and Bachmann trains. These two brands account for over 70% of searches, both in the United States and globally.

Lionel trains dominate the model train hobby with 59% of all searches in the United States and 37% of searches globally. Lionel trains are primarily O scale, which is one of the most popular scales available, especially among serious hobbyists. Lionel is also one of the oldest brands with train sets dating back to 1900. However, the original Lionel Corporation went out of business. The brand was revived in 1969 by General Mills, the cereal company. They launched Lionel, LLC and quickly became the leading brand.

In the United States, Bachmann trains are the second largest brand with 13% of searches. Globally, Bachmann is the third largest brand with only 8% of searches. Bachmann trains were first introduced in 1946. Bachmann manufactures a large product line consisting mostly of HO scale trains, including the popular Thomas Tank Engine electric train sets. Bachmann also produces N scale, O scale and large scale trains. Prices range from under $100 to over $2,000 per train set.

Globally, Hornby is the second largest brand with 35% of searches, placing them just slightly behind Lionel. However, Hornby is based in the UK and their sales are almost all outside the United States They received only 1% of searches within the United States. Horny trains have a reputation for quality but their product line within the United States is very limited.

The top three brands, Lionel, Bachmann and Hornby, accounted for 73% of searches within the United States and 80% of searches globally. The remaining searches were spread among a dozen other brands led by LGB and Marklin, each with 5% of global searches. MTH with 3% and Atlas and Micro each with 2% of global searches. The remaining 3% of global searches were spread among all other brands. Of these remaining brands, the largest was Athearn, which received 3% of searches in the United States but only 1% of searches globally.

Zulu Musical Instruments, Essential To Develop Musical Traditions In Africa

African music is the music of Africans who live in a large region of 50 nations, each with a special culture, history and language, South of Sahara. Zulu musical instruments are part of this multilingual culture. African music has some distinct characteristics: the use of repetition is one of them. Another important characteristic is the polyphony; this is the combination of different musical parts played simultaneously.

The history is marked by the awesome military strategies of the Zulu King Shaka. The King’s and his warriors’ campaign of expansion is well known in world history. Zulu rich traditional culture includes songs, dances and colorful rituals, Zulu musical instruments are spectacular and original. A variety of Zulu musical instruments are well known, s well as the traditional Mine dance; Zulus have longtime used their music as a cry for freedom.

African music is really rich in modes of expression: drum ensembles are using Zulu musical instruments from the percussion family. Each drummer uses special methods to produce sounds to distinguish his drum from the others. Iron bells are very popular Zulu musical instruments; they are used to produce a repeated sound to help the drummers to play at the correct time.

Zulu musical instruments, rare and very special
The akadinda is a king of xylophone; two groups of African musicians are playing simultaneously. The first group is playing repeatedly the same pattern; the second group plays to fill in the missing sounds. Groups of Zulu musicians play also using flutes, trumpets or xylophones. Each player plays a single note in a strange rotation with the other players. The result is a polyphonic piece, characteristic to African music.

Musical practices of South African people were observed from many years; Zulu musical instruments are obsolete. Venda mbila is an old Zulu musical instrument; it is not used anymore. Reed flutes, contrary, are still very popular. The influence of foreign cultures and civilizations causes many of old Zulu musical instruments to become obsolete.

Musical instruments such as tsonga a horn, ingungu a friction drum, nkoka a drum, pedi a flute, venda musical bow and stick, deze and demba thumb piano and resonatos, umfece ankle rattles are almost obsolete.

To preserve this awesome heritage of Zulu musical instruments, the necessary information was entered into a database; each Zulu musical instrument was digitally photographed to preserve all information about it.

Facebook Earnings Review: What Wall Street Thinks

NEW YORK (TheStreet) — Facebook’s (FB_) second-quarter earnings focused on mobile revenue. Shares were soaring in premarket trading Thursday as Wall Street raised price targets and upgraded shares.

 The Menlo Park, Calif.-based social networker earned 19 cents a share on $1.813 billion in revenue for the quarter, as mobile advertising revenue accounted for 41% of advertising revenue this quarter. Total advertising revenue was $1.6 billion, 88% of total revenue, and up 61% year over year.

Analysts surveyed by Thomson Reuters were expecting Facebook to earn 14 cents a share on $1.62 billion in revenue for the quarter.

The company ended the quarter with 1.15 billion monthly active users (MAUs), up 21% year over year. There was a 51% annual increase in mobile MAUs, which drove the strength in mobile revenue. Daily active users (DAUs) were 699 million, up 27% annually.

Following the earnings, many analysts were bullish, with several upgrading shares and raising price targets. Here’s what some analysts on Wall Street had to say:

JPMorgan analyst Doug Anmuth (Overweight, $44 PT)

“Facebook delivered its strongest quarter yet as a public company–results that we think could be thesis-changing for many–and we would continue to buy Facebook shares even after the ~17% move up in the after-market. Our revenue and nonGAAP EPS estimates increase 12% and 38% for 2013, and 22% and 46% for 2014.”

Topeka Capital Markets analyst Victor Anthony (Buy, $40 PT)

“Facebook needed to, and delivered, a blowout quarter. What is clear from the results is advertisers have validated Facebook as an advertising platform. For full year 2013, our revenue and Adj. EPS increases to $7.196B and $0.71, resp, from $6.733B and $0.63. We still see more upside for the stock and recommend purchase. There are several well defined catalysts over the next two years that should lead to further share price appreciation, including: 1) monetizing Instagram, which, per CEO Zuckerberg, will generate “a lot of profits”, 2) launch of auto-play video ads, 3) monetizing Graph Search, 4) a bigger push into e-commerce, and 5) the potential for S&P 500 inclusion. Further, only 1mm or 6% of FB’s 18mm potential advertisers are buying ads, implying a huge runway for advertiser uptake exists.”

Sterne Agee analyst Arvind Bhatia (Buy, $37 PT)

“We are incrementally bullish on FB’s prospects following 2Q results and believe the stock should be a core holding in Internet portfolios. 2Q’s highlight was Mobile advertising (+76% q/q versus consensus +20%). Overall revenue (53% y/y) and EBITDA (+57% y/y) accelerated from 1Q’s 38%/35% revenue/EBITDA growth. Better than expected user engagement, strong monetization and good cost control helped FB outperform even the most bullish expectations on the Street. Reiterating Buy.”

Oppenheimer analyst Jason Helfstein (Outperform, $36 PT)

“Following materially better than expected 2Q results, we are increasing our estimates and price target, and are reiterating our Outperform rating. 2Q upside was driven by higher advertiser demand for newsfeed, both on volume and price, and since mobile Newsfeed pricing is similar to desktop and advertisers are largely indifferent between mobile and desktop, revenues are tracking the consumer shift to smartphones. We believe this dynamic is an important differentiator vs. other ad-supported internet companies, that are being hurt by the mobile mix shift. As such, we are increasing ’13E and ’14E revenue by 3% and 5%, and non-GAAP EPS by 7% and 9%, respectively. Raising target to $36 from $32.”

Shares of Facebook were soaring following earnings, tacking on 30.48% to $34.59 in premarket trading.

Damascus Chef Knife Origins

Damascus Steel, or Damast Steel (as it is sometimes called), was created in the middle-east between 1100 and 1700AD.
Its first mean wasto make knives for protection.
It was later found that it was first created in China long before our time, arounf 300BC.
It was then introduced as ingots (Steel blocks) to the middle east and formed into swords.
The uniqueness of the Damascus Steel in theweapons, made them so effective, that they would slice through the softer European metal blades of the time, making them precious.
Damascus Chef Knife.
Around the 17th century, the technique of forging the Damascus or Wootz Steel was .
Untill now the true metal components of thesteel alloy used in the the Damast Ingots that were used for forging the weapons is unknown.
At this moment the term Damascus or Damast is used for knives with a visible grain pattern.
The blade is made of of Steel, Cadmium, Carbon and Iron (and other composition as Chromium and Vanadium and more…).
Many metals are with variegated surface, these are etched on the blade instead ofreal metal layering for real Damascus chef knife blade lines.
The authentic Damascus chef knife is forged and folded and the steel is grinded and polished to show the layers of Iron in the Damascus chef knife.
Today severalDamascus Steel steels are used in damascus chef knives and Chef Knives, and rings.
Using a good forged Damascus chef knife to using a regular knife is astonishin.
Whan you use a damascus chef knife the precision of your knife is much better.
The reason is when you use a damascus chef knife your work is much easier sharpness and flexibily, and edge retension which is much better than a regular knife.

I love cooking and I love writing, so here I write on and its origins. Look for more of my stuff.
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Tasik Temenggor Discovery Island

We traveled by boat from one place to another. The first stop was the waterfall at Pulau Tujuh. The route to the waterfall was not really challenging for Fred and I since weve done a lot of hiking activities. Though, I found that other people were finding it quite challenging to get there. In my personal opinion, the water fall was nice but I was not that impressed. Maybe its because Ive just seen a greater waterfall in Langkawi just last week. Lesson here, you should start looking at the smaller ones first to keep up the excitement every time you see a waterfall.

The second stop was the orang asli village at Kg Chuweh. It was interesting to know that they actually have tarred road and even astro. We just sat around and let them watched us instead of us watching them. The children were very shy as they came slowly to get food from us and ran away very quickly once they got it just like a mouse, as Fred said.

The last stop was for Rafflesia flower sight seeing at Pulau Besar. At first I thought the track was more challenging but it turned out that it was only for a short distance. To our disappointment, we didnt get to see a blossomed Rafflesia flower. There were only buds. I guess we were not chosen to be among the lucky few that get to see a real blossomed Rafflesia flower.

By the time we came back to the boathouse, it was almost dark already. Some of us went for canoeing while some just went back to their room to get some rest. Later we had a western food dinner. I personally liked this dinner better than the last one and so did Fred. After that, we watched a presentation on hornbills.

The third day arrived, which means the last day. We had breakfast and got ready to leave the island and head back home. Overall, it was a unique adventure, being on a private island on a lake. I had lots of fun and it was a different kind of experience going back to nature. You can discover a lot of new things here. I guess thats why they call it Tasik Temenggor Discovery Island. In fact you can discover yourself here!

If you ever come here, hope you will be lucky enough to see elephants, a blooming Rafflesia flower, and hornbills. You can visit www.temenggor.com for more details.

Delft’s New Train Station

Info & Images: Courtesy Mecanoo Photography: Harry Cock

Intro: Mecanoo Architects design the new Delft station, marking one’s arrival at Delft as a ceremonial and memorable experience…

Copy: Delft’s new train station is now in use. It was officially opened on Saturday, 28th February 2015. The station, in combination with municipal offices and the new city hall, sits atop a new train tunnel built in place of the old concrete viaduct that has divided the city in two since 1965. From the outset, Mecanoo’s idea has been to design a station that makes it clear to visitors that they have arrived in Delft.

Says Francine Houben, Mecanoo’s creative director, -Coming up the escalators, the impressive ceiling with the historic map of Delft unfolds. When you look outside, you see the city and the old station as a modern -View of Delft’ by the painter Johannes Vermeer. Arriving in Delft is now an unforgettable experience!-

The character of Delft, epitomised by the combination of past and future, was the starting point for the design led by Francesco Veenstra of Mecanoo. A vaulted ceiling features an enormous historic 1877 map of Delft and its surroundings, connecting the station with the city hall that is currently under construction. Within the station hall, walls and columns are adorned with a contemporary re-interpretation of Delft Blue tiles. In 2017, you will be able to walk directly from the station into the city hall.

The glass skin of the building is designed to reflect the Dutch skies. The panels of fused glass with lens-like spheres reference a vernacular window design that can be seen throughout the historic city. The combination and rhythm of open panels of high performance glass and closed fused glass panels enable a high degree of energy efficiency.

Throughout the design process the building volume has been shaved and reformed to create a compact, highly efficient building form. The lowered roof lines at the corners provide a gradual transition towards the existing small-scale development of the Delft city centre and the adjacent Wester Quarter. Incisions in the glass volume form a pattern of alleyways and courtyards, which are themselves inspired by the intricate structure of Delft itself.

The station hall is a part of the first phase of the development of the station and municipal office. When the old railway viaduct will be demolished in 2017, and the city hall and entire municipal offices completed, the whole complex will be open to the public.

Clcik here to view images of the new station on indiaartndesign.com

Get Indocement Profit Rp 2.42 trillion in the first semester

Jakarta – Cement producer PT Indocement Tbk (INTP) profit for the period amounted to Rp 2.42 trillion in the first semester of 2013. Acquisition was up from last year’s first half profit which amounted to Rp 2.16 trillion.

Based on the company’s financial reports to the Indonesia Stock Exchange, the net profit was due to higher revenue of Rp 8.91 trillion in the period January to June 2013. “Up from the previous Rp 8.19 trillion in 2012,” said Director of Indocement, Daniele Lavalle, Wednesday, July 31, 2013.

The cement sales Indocement most in Java, which amounted to Rp 7.05 trillion and sales outside Java Rp 1.81 trillion. Cement exports recorded very minimal which is only Rp 49.6 billion.

Indocement recorded an increase in cost of revenue of Rp 4.69 trillion, up from Rp 4.4 trillion. While operating expenses include selling expenses and general administrative expenses also increased to Rp 1.26 trillion from Rp 1.16 trillion in the same period the previous year. Thus, the company’s operating profit in the January – June 2013 amounted to Rp 2.99 trillion.

Some time ago Indocement has signed the commencement of construction of the project P-14 plant in Coventry, Bogor, West Java, Indonesia with PT Sinoma Engineering. Aldo added, Coventry factory was among the company’s three main projects this year. The project is still in the form of semi-finished land (brown field).

The plan, built the factory with a capacity of 4.4 million tons per year. The investment value of Rp 5.5 trillion, while the construction will be completed and began operation in 2015.

Two other major projects, namely the addition of new cement grinding plant with a capacity of 1.9 million tons per year in Coventry, will be completed in the fourth quarter of this year. With the addition, the company is targeting production capacity at the end of 2013 amounted to 20.6 million tons, up from the current 18.6 million tons.

The next project on the land yet so plant (green field), namely the construction of two new plants with a production capacity of each of 2.5 million tons per year with locations in Central Java and outside Java.

Meanwhile, other competitors such as PT Semen Indonesia (Persero) Tbk posted a first half net profit of Rp 2.58 trillion or Rp 436 per share, an increase of 22.9% from the same period in 2012. The revenue stood at Rp 11.4 trillion, an increase of 31.9 percent over the same period last year, which stood at Rp 8.6 trillion.

The increase in revenues was supported by the total sales volume increased by 18.3 percent to 12.23 million tons in the first half of 2013. Domestic turnover amounted to 12.14 million tons (up 18.0 percent) and export sales of 0.09 million tonnes (up 170 percent). While the national cement sales volumes (industry) grew 7.5 percent to 27.83 million tons compared to the previous period, which stood at 25.89 million tonnes.