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Tuesday, May 22, 2012

'Kareena is one of the most professional actors we've worked with'

Mostly in spy-thrillers, the women have little to do and show up only to turn on the heat. How is her part defined?

That is a trait in many Bond movies, but again, our film is not Bond.

Kareena comes at a later stage in the film and has a complex character with various nuances attached. This role compliments her very well and she does full justice to her character.

Was she roped in to play the part because this is your home production?

No, she was thought of keeping the story in mind. If that was the case, she would have acted in our first production as well, Love Aaj Kal. It was the right casting decision.

She is a phenomenal and intense actor, and understands all facets of cinema since she has been versatile in her choice of roles.

Sometimes, she knows technicallities better than me -- about the lenses and the lighting. It is interesting to talk to her about such stuff. As a producer, she is one of the most professional actors we have worked with.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

'The audience is not bothered about a film's troubled past'

Two years on one project is a long time. Even Raghavan went on to write other screenplays. What was the delay about?

There were lots of rumours from the beginning created by the press itself that the film is going overboard with budget, getting delayed, and re-scheduled. None of it is true. 

Since it is a mega-budget film, it required a lot of detailing right from the locations worldwide to the action sequences. It needed time before the final cut was ready. You don't make films every day. Having said that, whenever a film comes out, I don't think the ticket-paying public is going to be bothered about its troubled past. 

Go on...

We have done car chases and other action stunts in a treatment which I haven't seen before and they are something not very easy to pull off. Yes, we took more time than we initially thought, but in the end we need to be satisfied with our finished product which we very much are.

Why is Kareena Kapoor -- your co-star in the film -- missing from the teaser launch?

We are following 'Divide and Rule' policy, so she will be coming at a later stage. (Laughs)

Saturday, May 12, 2012

'I thought the original Agent Vinod was quite hilarious'

What are the similarities between your new film and the Deepak Bahry-directed film Agent Vinod that came out in 1977?

When I saw the 1977 Agent Vinod, I thought it was quite hilarious. There was a gun which fired backwards, killing the shooter itself and other really crazy scenes. And it had an interesting plot.

Our film has nothing really to draw parallels with that one, apart from the title, which Rajshree Productions happily gave to me over a handshake.

I think Vinod is a very universal name. From the elite to the back of an auto-rickshaw, it randomly appears everywhere.

Moreover, India is a very large country with a huge market. We plan to reach out to as many people we can.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

The London Olympics 2012

Aerial view of the Olympic Park showing the Olympic Stadium with concession pods around the perimeter with the Orbit to the left.

Saif all praises for Bebo’s stunts

As reported earlier, Kareena Kapoor will be seen doing various stunts in her upcoming flick ‘Agent Vinod’. And guess who’s very happy with her? Well, he’s none other than Saif Ali Khan. He is all praises for his girlfriend and insists that Kareena is very good in doing stunts in his film.

Kareena wasn’t very keen on doing action or any kind of stunts prior to the film going on floors. However, in due course of time as the film started progressing, Bebo went on with the flow.

“She (Kareena Kapoor) had said she does not like doing action but she is very good at it. She has got pretty intense expression when she does it. She was very very good while doing it,” Saif Ali Khan said.

In Delhi, while shooting for an action sequence, the actress did injure herself quite a few times. Not just her but her beau Saif, was bruised too.

“I thought it (doing action) would be fun but every inch of my body was bruised and coloured in some amazing purple, yellow blotches…I had not seen something like this ever. I have done everything myself which I am excited about,” said the 41-year-old star.

Directed by Sriram Raghavan, Agent Vinod is a spy thriller, set to hit theaters in June, this year.

Wednesday, May 9, 2012

'We'd love to have a Vinod franchisee if this one makes money'

So he doesn't see a lot of women or indulge in drinks?
He definitely does both, but not in an American way like James Bond. The way Sriram has written him, it is a very rooted, Indian character. 

That said, I am not saying that it is not Bond inspired at all. There is James Bond, there is Jason Bourne and there are even little bits of Tintin.

Having seen the finished product, do you feel you have a killer franchisee in hand?
If we make money and if the film is liked by people, we would love to have a Vinod franchisee.

Monday, May 7, 2012

Safe Houses, Comfortable Vacation

If you are planning a holiday celebrating the end of the year in a long time, things should come first is ensuring the security of home. Who abandoned his family vacation home, usually an easy target for thieves or robbers?
Despite having a housekeeper, you must remain alert to any risks that may occur. Here are tips to stay safe when left home on vacation in a long time:
1. Avoid things that can indicate that your house is empty or if you would give us clues as to leave the house empty. This is certainly able to attract the attention of thieves, and keep in mind that they usually conduct reconnaissance prior to the house that will be targeted theft.
2. If you subscribe to the newspaper, then you can ask your newsagent to not transmit during the first newspaper you are traveling for newspapers piled up on the front porch is the main thing that gives a signal to thieves that your house is empty.
3. Put sandals / shoes at the door of your house. This can give a signal when the house was occupied.
4. Make sure all doors and windows are locked before you leave home.
5. Do not place valuables such as jewelry and cash in the house. It would be safer for you if when you are traveling money and jewelry you put in a bank deposit box.
6. Turn off all electronic items and unplug the plug and unplug the hose and the gas stove to prevent a short circuit that could cause a fire.
7. Leave our homes to neighbors who are we really believe in or to the police in a home environment that has become your trust as well.
8. Attach an alarm to prevent a thief can get into our house or if possible install CCTV in a hidden spot during your travel.
9. If you have a personal vehicle to be abandoned, it helps you deliver unto your closest relatives rather than leave it at home.
10. Check the water flow and cover with perfect that does not cause flooding in the house when you return home later.
11. Make sure the house is clean when you leave so you will not get tired when I got back home because they have to tidy the house a mess when you leave.
It may be useful.

Saif to replace Salman in 'Judwaa 2'

Saif Ali Khan is going to step into Salman Khan’s shoes for the sequel to ‘Judwaa’ which was a blockbuster of the year 1997. In ‘Judwaa’, Salman Khan played double role. The sequel will be produced by producer Sajid Nadiadwala. Saif Ali Khan has been confirmed for the role.

The film will be directed by Sajid Khan. For a long time, Sajid and Saif were willing to work together and now they have got the right script. ‘Judwaa 2’ will have technical experts from Hollywood. The rest of the cast is yet to be finalized.

Currently, Sajid is busy with the post-production work of his upcoming film ‘Housefull 2’ and busy with the screenplay of his next film with Ajay Devgan.

‘Judwaa’ is not starting anytime soon. The film will go on floors early next year.  David Dhawan directed Saman Khan starrer ‘Judwaa’,. Karisma Kapoor and Rambha played the female leads.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Hickory Creek, Texas

Hickory Creek, Texas
6 bedrooms
6 baths, 8 half baths
36,630 sq. ft.
$35 million
Pedigree: Just 15 minutes from Dallas/Fort Worth International Airport, this attention-grabbing mansion—built in 2002 for CellStar founder Alan Goldfield—continues to linger on the market despite huge price cuts. It was modeled after Vaux-le-Vicomte, a 17th-century château that inspired Versailles, and overflows with baroque flourishes.

Property Values: Ninety acres with a lake, tennis courts, a pool, and a cabana.

Talking Point: Over-the-top amenities include a two-story Chanel-themed dressing suite, an indoor pool, a hair salon, a home theater, and a bowling alley.

No History Is Illegal: Teach-Ins Target Arizona’s Mexican American Studies Ban, As National Organizations Demand Return of Banished Books

From the high plains of Wyoming to the urban centers of Atlanta, Chicago and New York City, hundreds of schools launched a historic teach-in movement today to incorporate lesson plans from the banished Mexican American Studies program in Tucson in their own classrooms.

Organized by the Teacher Activist Groups and joined by Rethinking Schools and other educational networks, the month-long “No History is Illegal” initiative comes on the heels of an unusually strong statement by over two dozen of the nation’s largest publishing, literary and education organizations that calls on the Tucson Unified School District (TUSD) and Arizona state education officials to recognize First Amendment rights and “return all books to classrooms and remove all restrictions on ideas that can be addressed in class.”

Thousands of detained books remain behind lock and key in the school district’s warehouse like broken chairs and desks and school bus parts, despite the fact that the TUSD library catalog shows that there are less than 2-3 copies of several of the removed Mexican American Studies textbooks in the entire school district, which serves more than 55,000 students.

In outrage at the detained books, nearly 15,000 people have also signed a petition started by former Mexican American Studies teacher Norma Gonzalez, which calls on the Tucson school district to “immediately remove these books from their ‘district storage facility’ and make them available in each school’s library. Knowledge cannot be boxed off and carried away from students who want to learn!”

Signed by representatives of the Association of American Publishers, American Association of University Professors, American Booksellers Foundation for Free Expression, National Coalition Against Censorship, National Council for the Social Studies, National Council of Teachers of English, and the PEN American Center, among other national groups, the censorship statement yesterday also calls out the troubling doublespeak by Tucson Unified School District administrators like Superintendent John Pedicone, who declared the drastic confiscation of textbooks and curriculum materials in front of children and subsequent detainment in locked storage units is not a ban.

School officials have insisted that the books haven’t been banned because they are still available in school libraries. It is irrelevant that the books are available in the library — or at the local bookstore. School officials have removed materials from the curriculum, effectively banning them from certain classes, solely because of their content and the messages they contain. The effort to “prescribe what shall be orthodox in politics, nationalism, [or] religion” is the essence of censorship, whether the impact results in removal of all the books in a classroom, seven books, or only one.

The American Library Association issued a similar denouncement of Tucson’s extraordinary book banishment and forced removals last week. A larger list of other unacceptable titles, including numerous Native American authors, from the banished Mexican American Studies literature and history curricula can be found here.

Along with curriculum lists, videos and suggested lesson plans, the “No History is Illegal” website includes links to other actions around the country. On Saturday, for example, educators and civil rights activists in Atlanta, Georgia are holding a special “teach-in on Tucson” at Georgia State University.

“The national outpouring of support has been amazing and this website, this movement of solidarity, is proof of this,” said former Mexican American Studies literature teacher Curtis Acosta. “It is humbling to think of the hard work that our friends across the country have produced to keep our story and program alive in the minds and hearts of so many people. I believe the tide is turning due to the deplorable enforcement of the law by our district. Now it is clear what the agenda was truly about — banning books, censoring teachers, rolling back the decades of civil rights and equality all to appease the desires of egocentric politicians. The love and respect from fellow educators and citizens will lift the hearts of our students during these dark days. Now they will know that they are not alone.”

February 1st, of course, also kicks off Black History Month, which pioneering historian Carter Woodson launched in West Virginia more than 80 years ago to address “distortions” and “deletions” in the historical record. Only days away from Arizona’s centennial celebrations on February 14th, residents in the beleaguered state, and particularly in Tucson, have once again been reminded of Woodson’s admonition to guard against the “danger of being exterminated” through historicide or the removal of certain histories from the national experience.

In her State of the Union last month, California-transplanted Gov. Jan Brewer failed to even mention a single Native American, Mexican American or African American in her round-up of pioneers in the state’s history.

In 1895, in fact, African American innovator Henry Flipper made history in Nogales, Arizona, when he became the first black editor of a non-black-owned newspaper in the nation. In the following spring, Flipper published a historical booklet, Did a Negro Discover Arizona and New Mexico, that provided some of the first translations of Spanish documents on the role of Moroccan slave and scout Esteban, who most historians consider to be the first non-native to enter present-day Arizona in 1539, at the head of a Spanish expedition.

“As Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. warned us,” the “No History is Illegal” website notes, “‘Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere.’ What is happening in Arizona is not only a threat to Mexican American Studies, it is a threat to our right to teach the experiences of all people of color, LGBT people, poor and working people, the undocumented, people with disabilities and all those who are least powerful in this country. Our history is not illegal.”

Saturday, May 5, 2012


Loftus Hall has a long and fascinating history of hauntings. The first home to stand on this side was Redmond Hall, built in 1350. The original Loftus Hall was built on its ruins, then demolished in 1870 and the building that stands today was built. Legend has it that when a stranger came riding through in the mid-18th Century and asked for shelter for the night, the family living in the home agreed. When one of the ladies dropped a playing card during a game, she bent over to retrieve it and noticed that the stranger had a cloven foot. The stranger immediately disappeared, leaving a hole in the ceiling that is said to still exist today. After that encounter, the young lady who noticed the cloven foot, Anne Tottenham, fell very ill and eventually died. The house continued to be plagued by supernatural occurrences and poltergeist activity. The family asked a priest to perform and exorcism, and presumably the poltergeist activity stopped. However, it is said that the ghost of Anne Tottenham still roams the house. Due to constant vandalism, the vacant house is now closed off and the windows and doors are boarded over.

Economic versus biological resources

In economics a resource is defined as a commodity, service, or other asset used to produce goods and services that meet human needs and wants (see economic resource). Economics itself has been defined as the study of how society manages its scarce resources.Economics focuses on resource supply and demand as it influences production of goods and services to meet human needs and wants. Classical economics recognizes three categories of resources: land, labor, and capital.Together with entrepreneurship, land, labor, and capital]omics. Land includes all natural resources and is viewed as both the site of production and the source of raw materials. Labor or human resources consists of human effort provided in the creation of products, paid in wage. Capital consists of human-made goods or means of production (machinery, buildings, and other infrastructure) used in the production of other goods and services, paid in interest. Entrepreneurs serve as managers, risk-takers, leaders, and visionaries.

In biology and ecology a resource is defined as a substance or object required by a living organism for normal growth, maintenance, and reproduction (see biological resource). Resources, such as food, water, or nesting sites, can be consumed by an organism and, as a result, become unavailable to other organisms. For animals key resources include food, water, and territory. For plants key resources include sunshine, nutrients, water, and a place to grow.
There are three fundamental differences between economic versus ecological views: 1) the economic resource definition is human-centered (anthropocentric) and the ecological resource definition is nature-centered (biocentric or ecocentric); 2) the economic view includes desire along with necessity, whereas the biological view is about basic biological needs; and 3) economic systems are based on markets of currency exchanged for goods and services, whereas biological systems are based on natural processes of growth, maintenance, and reproduction.

This Graffiti Artist Took Stock For Painting Facebook's First HQ -- Now It's Worth $200 Million

Graffiti artist David Choe painted the inside of Facebook's first headquarters back in 2005, and Mark Zuckerberg made him an offer: he could be paid a few thousand dollars in cash, or take the same amount in Facebook stock.
As the New York Times reports, he took the stock, even though he thought Facebook's product was basically pointless.
That turned out to be the right call. Assuming he didn't sell any stock, and that Facebook debuts at a $100 billion valuation, his payment will now be worth about $200 million, sources tell the Times.

Friday, May 4, 2012


The Winchester Mystery House story begins and ends with ghosts. In 1881, William Wirt Winchester, founder of the Winchester Repeating Arms Company, passed away. He left behind his wife, Sarah, who had never quite been the same since her only child died 15 years earlier. Shortly after his death, Sarah visited a medium to contact her dead husband. Reportedly, William Winchester told his wife that there was a curse on their family. William’s inventions had taken countless lives, and the ghosts of the dead were coming for Sarah. William’s ghost informed Sarah that in order to stay alive, she had to go West, find a spot, and start building a home. If she ever stopped building, William warned, she would die. Sarah settled in San Jose and began building on a 162-acre parcel of land. She kept carpenters and architects at work every single day. From 1884 to her death in 1922, Sarah built constantly. Eventually the house grew to approximately 160 rooms and is referred to as a “labyrinth.” There are useless features, such as stairs that go up to the ceiling, and it has been said that it’s nearly impossible to find your way around. Some say that the ghosts who followed Sarah Winchester to the home can still be seen there today. The house is now a California landmark and guided tours are offered.

VW Jetta Hybrid

VW Jetta Hybrid

VW Jetta Hybrid
The new Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid has made its world debut at the 2012 North American International Auto Show in Detroit, bringing electric drive to a new class of Volkswagen. Propulsion comes from a high-tech 1.4-litre TSI 150 PS petrol engine and a 20 kW zero-emissions electric motor. Together, these provide not merely fuel consumption that is around 20 per cent better overall than an equivalent petrol-powered vehicle (at 45 mpg US - around 54 mpg Imperial), but also sporty performance, with the benchmark 0 to 60 mph sprint taking less than nine seconds.

Like the Touareg Hybrid, the Jetta is a parallel hybrid, using a decoupling clutch that can disengage the petrol motor for pure electric drive (or when coasting or braking), disengage the electric motor (for higher speeds or when the battery charge is low), or combine the two units for maximum power. Using electric power alone, the Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid can be driven at speeds of up to 70 kmh (44 mph) and over a distance of two kilometres (1.3 miles), depending on conditions. For maximum performance, both the TSI engine and the electric motor combine, giving peak power of 170 PS. This is the first use of the 1.4-litre turbocharged engine in America, and it offers the same power and more torque (250 Nm, 184 lbs ft) than the normally aspirated 2.5-litre engine that is commonly used in the Jetta there.

2013 Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid
A lithium-ion battery supplies the energy for the electric motor. It is located behind the rear seat bench, making no compromises on interior space. The battery is made up of 60 individual cells, each with an energy capacity of five Ah. Together they produce a nominal voltage of 220 Volts and an energy capacity of 1.1 kWh and weigh 38.5 kg. Cooling is provided by an integrated fan, operated by the battery's own management system that performs diagnostic, monitoring and safety functions, including disconnecting the battery in the event of an accident.

Power is directed to the front wheels via a seven-speed dual clutch DSG gearbox, which is efficient and lightweight, at 74 kg. Despite the extra weight of the battery, electric motor and extra safety modifications to the vehicle's structure, the Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid weighs only 100 kg more than the non-hybrid Jetta at less than 1,500 kg in total.

Provided the battery contains sufficient charge, the Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid is switched to electric drive mode either automatically (at speeds of up to 60 kmh or 37 mph) or at the press of a button next to the gear lever (up to 70 kmh or 44 mph).

When the driver releases the accelerator pedal at higher speeds (up to 135 kmh or 84 mph) the TSI engine is decoupled, reducing drag torque losses, and maximising fuel efficiency. Under braking, the Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid switches to a battery regeneration mode, which decouples the TSI engine and uses the electric motor as a generator. The generating power of the motor rises with increased brake pedal travel. At higher speeds, or when the battery charge is depleted, the TSI motor provides extra power to recharge the battery, however even in these situations the charging is interspersed with electric driving phases to maximise fuel efficiency.

Externally, the Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid can be identified by aerodynamic modifications including a new front spoiler, a rear diffuser and a rear spoiler that help to improve the car's Cd value by 10 per cent. There are also new headlights with LED running lights, LED rear lights and unique 15-inch alloy wheels with low rolling resistance tyres. 'Hybrid' badges adorn the front wings, bootlid and modified front grille, where the Volkswagen logo is presented on a blue background for the first time.

The interior of the Hybrid is very much like that of any other Jetta, although the electric drive, along with a newly designed exhaust system, an acoustic windscreen and thicker front side windows help to make this the quietest vehicle Volkswagen has ever offered in this class.

One key interior difference is in the instruments. If the driver selects the 'Hybrid' menu in the multifunction display, the current drive mode is shown, while a meter indicates energy flow via arrows. The same screen also shows the battery charge state. Beneath the energy flow diagram is what is known as the ePower meter, which indicates the power provided by the electric motor.

The tachometer is replaced by the Power meter, a multifunction display on the left of the instrument cluster. This informs the driver of the operation of the hybrid system: 'Ready', 'Charge', 'Eco', 'Boost' or 'TSI'. The audio system, meanwhile, has a 'zero emissions' menu. This offers a graphical display of the past 30 minutes of driving time, with a bar showing emissions each minute: a full, 100 per cent bar represents no emissions at all.

Standard equipment on the US-spec SE model includes a 2Zone climate control system that works without the TSI engine running, a 'Premium 8' sound system, Bluetooth phone integration, MDI interface for iPod connectivity and a leather-wrapped multifunction steering wheel. Moving up to SEL1 specification adds 16-inch alloy wheels, a glass sunroof, RNS 315 satellite navigation, electric driver's seat adjustment, heated front seats and keyless entry. The top SEL2 specification adds to this further, with 17-inch wheels, fog lights, bi-xenon headlights with cornering function, a reversing camera and a 400-Watt Fender sound system.

The Volkswagen Jetta Hybrid launches in North America in November 2012; there are no current plans to sell this model in the UK.

New Guinea ferry sinks, 219 of 350 aboard saved

Rescuers have plucked 219 survivors from the sea off Papua New Guinea's east coast after a ferry sank Thursday with as many as 350 people on board, officials said.

An airplane from Australia, three helicopters and eight ships were scouring the search area after the MV Rabaul Queen went down while travelling from Kimbe on the island of New Britain to coastal town of Lae on the main island, Australian Maritime Safety Authority said in a statement.

Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard called the incident a "major tragedy" and said her country was providing assistance to its near neighbour.

"Given the likely very high loss of life here, I think when this news comes to the attention of Australians around the country they will be thinking about the people of PNG as they respond to this tragedy," she added.

Changing minute by minute
The Australian maritime agency initially detected the ferry's distress beacon and alerted the PNG Maritime Rescue Co-ordination Center, which is co-ordinating the rescue effort. The Australian statement said 219 survivors had been recovered by five ships by late Thursday.

It said 350 people were believed to be on board, but Papua New Guinea's National Maritime Safety Authority (NMSA) rescue co-ordinator Captain Nurur Rahman said the true figure was likely lower.

"I cannot confirm or deny the 350 missing number. It is hearsay," Rahman said. "I have not seen the manifest as yet, but it is likely around 300."

Rahman said he was being fed information from an NMSA agent on board one of the ships.

"The dynamics of this thing are changing all the time, minute by minute," he said.

Ship operator Star Ships could not be immediately contacted for comment.

Thursday, May 3, 2012


The Crenshaw House, built in 1838, is most often referred to as the “Old Slave House.” This home was the residence of John Crenshaw, who committed shocking acts of cruelty within its walls and without. As a landowner and salt mine owner, Crenshaw was in need of cheap labor to keep his businesses running. His solution was to kidnap black men, women and children – mostly freed slaves – and force them to work for him. They were kept in the third floor of the Crenshaw house in tiny, cramped cells. They were bolted to the floor and beaten mercilessly. After the Crenshaws moved out of the house, the new owners began to experience paranormal activity. The souls said to occupy the house are those of the brutally tortured slaves once held captive within. Almost everyone who has tried to spend a night in the attic has run terrified from the house before morning. The house was once open for tours, but is now owned by the state of Illinois and closed to all visitors.

Pics of Mustang Cars

Carbon Monoxide Poisoning: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Symptoms and Treatment

Carbon monoxide poisoning is a common problem during the winter months when people keep their windows shut to keep out the cold and use heaters that may be faulty. Faulty home appliances and improper ventilation exposes the people in the room to high levels of this toxic gas. Read on to know about the causes, symptoms and treatment of carbon monoxide poisoning.

Carbon monoxide is a colorless, odorless gas that is produced due to incomplete combustion of carbon based fuels. It can also be caused due to improper installation of certain appliances and lack of proper ventilation. It is also known as the 'silent killer' as it can't be seen or smelt. Although small doses cause mild symptoms like nausea and dizziness, large doses can cause brain damage and even death. It is believed to claim around 500 lives every year.

Sources and Causes
Carbon monoxide is created due to combustion of certain fuels in absence of proper levels of oxygen. Common sources of carbon monoxide are motor vehicle exhaust, smoke from fire and fumes from engines. Certain appliances at home also produce this poisonous gas when they are not functioning properly. Common sources of this gas inside a house or a building are malfunctioning cooking appliances, water heater, gas clothes dryers, unvented supplemental heaters, oil, gas or coal furnaces that are not maintained properly. Lack of proper ventilation also adds to an increase in the concentration of the toxic gas in a room. For example, not only does a choked chimney cut down the supply of oxygen required for production of carbon dioxide instead of carbon monoxide, it also traps the carbon monoxide produced due to incomplete combustion of fuels.

Hemoglobin which is the red pigment in the red blood cells carries oxygen to the tissues within the body. However, carbon monoxide has a high affinity to the iron sites in hemoglobin to which oxygen molecules get attached during their transfer from lungs to different parts of the body. When human beings are exposed to high levels of carbon monoxide, the molecules of this gas attach to hemoglobin molecules more readily than oxygen due to their stronger affinity for hemoglobin molecules than oxygen. The compound thus formed is called carboxyhemoglobin. It is this compound which is believed to be the major cause of carbon monoxide poisoning. Due to preferential attachment of hemoglobin with carbon monoxide molecules when they are present in inhaled air, there isn't enough hemoglobin free to transport oxygen. Moreover, if carbon monoxide attaches to any one of the four oxygen binding sites of hemoglobin, the affinity of oxygen for the other three sites increases. Therefore, even if a hemoglobin molecule is carrying three oxygen molecules, it will not deliver them to the tissues. In either case, the tissues are starved of oxygen which hampers the chemical processes going on in their cells. This creates a condition known as hypoxic injury to the tissues.

Carbon monoxide poisoning can be detected by these commonly occurring symptoms:
Chest pain
Shortness of breath
Abdominal pain
In case carbon monoxide poisoning is suspected, all affected individuals should be moved away from the area to a place with enough supply of fresh air. If someone has stopped breathing, CPR (cardiopulmonary resuscitation) may have to be administered. Every person should be tested for poisoning from carbon monoxide and proper medical treatment should be given.

Medical treatment includes:
Providing high doses of oxygen using a face mask from an oxygen reserve bag. High levels of oxygen helps carbon monoxide to dissociate from hemoglobin. Hence, the hemoglobin is now free to carry oxygen to the various cells of the body.
In case a person has inhaled high doses of carbon monoxide and has suffered from severe poisoning, higher doses of oxygen may be given to him using a hyperbaric chamber. Hyperbaric oxygen therapy is supposed to hasten the process of breaking down of carboxyhemoglobin. Hyperbaric oxygen also directly provides oxygen to the tissues. Hence, it is more effective than giving oxygen through an oxygen reservoir bag.
There is no home remedy for carbon monoxide poisoning. The only way to prevent one's family from this hazard is to keep the home appliances in proper working condition and maintain proper ventilation in the house.

Guyana residents on alert for flooding

Unusually high rainfall for the first month of the year has resulted in the East Demerara Water Conservancy reaching threatening levels.

As a result, residents of the Mahaica and Mahaicony Creek were placed on alert and advised to take the necessary precautions for flooding as government announced plans yesterday to release water from the swollen East Demerara Water Conservancy into the Creek.

The opening of the Maduni Sluice to release the water during low tide starting yesterday will relieve the swelling EDWC dams.

Minister of Agriculture, Dr. Leslie Ramsammy said: “This is the latest of the actions we have taken to maintain the conservancy at a safe level. In most of the places where we measure the amount of rainfall, the amount of rainfall for January 2012 has surpassed by several fold the long term average for January,” he said.

However, once the waters are under control once again the Maduni Sluice will be closed and the Dermerara River outlets relied on exclusively once again.

Read more:

Wednesday, May 2, 2012


One of the best-known unusual condo complexes in the world is Habitat 67 in Montreal. Designed to give condo dwellers a better living experience than the plain urban skyscrapers, these condos allow inhabitants great views and a unique urban environment. The stacked-boxes appearance of the units creates interesting outdoor spaces as well as reducing the possibility that residents will glance out of their window and directly into another resident’s window.

Ferrari F430

Ferrari F430

Ferrari F430
The Ferrari F430 hails the arrival of a whole new generation of Ferrari V8-engined berlinettas. Every inch of the car was inspired by the engineering research carried out at Ferrari's Gestione Sportiva F1 racing division.

The result is a highly innovative design characterised by cutting-edge technologies perfected for use on a road-going car. The most important of these is the electronic differential (E-Diff), initially developed by Ferrari for it's F1 single-seaters and designed to make to make the most of the engine's torque to optimise traction, and the handily placed steering wheel-mounted commutator switch (better known to the Scuderia's drivers as manettino) which directly controls the integrated systems governing vehicle dynamics.

The Ferrari F430's light, compact 4,308 cc engine is completely new. Needless to say, its performance is outstanding.

The Ferrari F430's aerodynamics are also highly innovative for a road car: its shape has been honed to generate special flows to increase downforce and improve cooling.


The Ferrari F430's Pininfarina-designed shape is inspired by the car's exceptional engineering. Each and every styling cue highlights the aggression and performance of a thoroughbred Ferrari. The F430's nose is characterised by two distinctive air intakes that channel air into generously dimensioned radiators that cool the powerful engine.


Just lie the predecessor the 360 Modena, the F430 has an aluminium chassis. The choice of the aluminium and the design methods used have allowed considerable structural stiffness and excellent driver and passenger protection to be combined with weight reduction.

2005 Ferrari F430

The Ferrari F430 is powered by a new 90 degree V8 featuring Ferrari's traditionally uncompromising design approach with a flat-plane crank (180 degrees between throws).

This is an all-new unit that does not share any components with the 360 Modena's engine. Despite a 20% increase in engine displacement (from 3,586 cc to 4,308 cc), engine weight has grown minimally by just 4 kg, while performance is considerably improved across the board. Torque has increased by 25% (465 Nm at 5,250 rpm) and power by 23% (490 hp at 8,500 rpm).

E-Diff (Electronic Differential)

The E-Diff or electronic differential has been used for years in F1 single-seaters to guarantee maximum grip out of bends, eliminating wheel spin. On the road it is a formidable technological refinement that improves roadholding.

The E-Diff consists of three main subsystems:

A high-pressured hydraulic system, shared with the F1 gearbox 9if present)
A control system consisting of valve, sensors and electronic control unit;
A mechanical unit housed in the left side of the gearbox
Transmission and F1 Gearbox

The Ferrari F430 features a new cast aluminium transmission casing that houses the gearbox in unit with the electronic differential and bevel type final drive, as well as the engine oil tank. The 6-speed gearbox incorporates multicone synchronizers, while both the 6th gear and the final drive have been lengthened to make the most of the greater power and torque of the new engine as well as to guarantee reliability.

Manettino and Vehicle Dynamics

Just like in Formula 1, the Ferrari F430 driver can change various areas of the set-up of his car using a single-sector set on the steering wheel.

The Manettino, as it is called by Scuderia Ferrari drives, is a communication switch that has been adopted directly from racing and allows the driver maximum efficiency and speed in controlling the car's various functions. This switch quickly and simply controls the electronics governing suspension settling and the CST stability and traction control, E-Diff and the change speed of the F1 transmission, as well as the integration between each of these individual functions. The settings available to the driver have been concentrated in five different strategies. These, in ascending order according to the level of performance, are:

ICE: performance is significantly restricted (maximum intervention by the stability and traction control) for maximum stability - indispensable for driving in very slippery conditions (snow or ice).
LOW GRIP: this position ensures stability both on dry and wet surfaces with poor grip (rain), gritty roads or particularly broken or undulating blacktop. In this configuration, unlike ICE, the driver can still use the F1 paddle shift.
SPORT: is the standard setting that strikes the best balance between stability and performance. Ideal for the open road, this position provides an optimum compromise for maximum performance in safety. Compared to the previous settings, SPORT adopts a more sporting configuration for the adaptive suspension to maximise performance, handling and stability at high speeds.
RACE: this setting must be used only on the race track. Gear changing is even faster to minimise gear shift times. CST intervention is reduced to a minimum (the engine management only cuts the engine when absolutely necessary).
CST activates and deactivates the stability and traction control. With the Manettino set to off, the driver has full control over the cars reactions. The only driver aids that remain active are those that cannot be overridden such as ABS and EBD (electronic brake distribution).

Traditionally, Ferrari has clothed its mechanical package in forms that are dictated by the need for maximum aerodynamic efficiency. In the case of the Ferrari F430, this principle has been developed to the extreme, employing exactly the same engineering approach to computer development models and wind tunnel testing as used by the F1 team.

Perfecting the Ferrari F430's aerodynamics has brought about a 50% increase in downforce compared to the 360 Modena, thus increasing high-sped stability and the car's active safety. At 200 km/h that equates to 45kg more downforce than the 360 Modena and this becomes 85kg at 300 km/h, amounting to a total of 280kg.

The spoiler on the trailing edge of the engine cover works in conjunction with the new diffuser between to rear wheels. The latter features similar fences (deflectors) to those used on Ferrari's single-seaters, and increases the speed of air flow under the tail of the car creating an area of depression ad the ground effect that pulls the car down.

Ferrari F430 Technical Specifications

Overall length: 4512 mm (177.6 in)
Overall width: 1923 mm (75.7 in)
Height: 1214 mm (47.8 in)
Wheelbase: 2600 mm (102.4 in)
Front track: 1669 mm (65.7 in)
Rear track: 1616 mm (63.6 in)
Kerb weight: 1450 kg (3197 lb)
Type: 90° V8
Bore/stroke: 92 mm x 81 mm (3.50 x 3.03 in)
Unit displacement: 538.5 cm3 (32.86 cu in)
Total displacement: 4,308 cm3 (262.89 cu in)
Compression ratio: 11.3:1
Maximum power: 360.4 kW (490 CV) @ 8500 rpm
Maximum torque: 465 Nm (343 lb ft) @ 5250 rpm
Specific horse power: 114 CV/l
Maximum speed: >315 km/h (>196 mph)
0-100 km/h (0-62 mph): 4.0 s
Fuel Consumption
Combined: 18.3 l/100 km
CO2 Emission
Combined: 420 g/km

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