Archive for the ‘Main’ Category

Soon, Your Car May Prevent You From Driving Drunk

Sunday, June 7th, 2015
Image courtesy of the NHTSA.

Image courtesy of the NHTSA.

New blood-alcohol-sensor technology could cause your car to shut down automatically if it senses you’re over the legal blood-alcohol limit of 0.08. In a presentation to Congress on Thursday, the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) outlined technology known as the Driver Alcohol Detection System for Safety (DADSS), that seeks to create “a world without drunk driving.”

DADSS uses touch and breathalyzer technology to determine if a driver has had too much to drink, and then prevents the driving of the vehicle if the person’s blood-alcohol level is over the legal limit. If the driver should be a teenager, the system would prevent the car from being driven if there is any trace at all of alcohol in the young person’s system. (more…)

The outlook of Buying Gold

Thursday, February 6th, 2014

The current gold prices today for February of 2014 are $1256.00 per ounce – which is a dramatic downfall compared to this time last year where gold was valued at $1677.00 per ounce. This turbulent market has investors scrabbling. With the gold market pegged to the USD which is starting to lose its stability due to the lack of a sound fiscal policy by the US government, no wonder people are buying gold!

However, this was not always the case. In 2010 gold began to rise in value. By the beginning of 2011, with this rise on the increase, gold was making headlines around the world. Two months later, the peak on prices was at $1519.30 and by the Monday of the 25th of April that same year, S&P announced to credit agencies downgraded the US government from stable to negative.

In that same year, very late in the year, gold would peak at a massive rate of $1900.30 per ounce. For anyone interested in selling gold, this would prove a perfect time to trade unwanted gold in for exchange of cash.

The current speculation by investors and those in the gold industry is that gold will continue to fall. There is talk that gold may drop even further and hit an all time drop in the market before the end of the year. This is a clear indication by the markets that no one is believing what the governments around the world are trying to push on the public that the recession is over.

Since the Obama administration decided to bail out the financial industry and not force them to help the general public, the US economy is not going to recover for some time. Since the massive debt was built up helping the rich, the poor will suffer even longer and there are no more funds to help them.

Gold always has and always will be an indicator on how well the economic policies of the US government and the other major economies are doing. If record highs in the gold market were at their optimum, the people of the world would know their governments are not deploying a sound fiscal policy. It really is time for a change and not the change Obama did, which was for the worse.

The direction of 2014, for gold investors does not look in it’s finest year. Every time the so called experts predict the worlds’ economy is mending, there seems to be another disaster that negatively influences the markets. As we all know, when the markets are unsettled, the price of gold rises.

Unfortunately we have been listening to this same rhetoric for over 2 years now. The private sector is doing what it can to help the economy, but the federal government has done nothing but sink the country deeper in debt.

One thing we do know for certain is that a lot of investors take the gold market very seriously. We’ve also learned that many gold investors, especially those relatively new to the game, are making some very common and deadly mistakes. Here are those most common mistakes and how you can avoid them.

Mistake 1 – Unrealistic Short-Term Expectations

Probably the most common gold buying mistakes that we see from new investors center around their expectations for their investments. Gold is a long term investment, not a short-term gainer. Sure, your investment today might gain $50 tomorrow as gold jumps for some reason, but most gains are slow and even over time. At the very least, gold will always gain at inflation’s pace, even if the economy is otherwise perfect. At best, it can skyrocket in a relatively short amount of time. Those jumps, however, are rarely overnight and take time.

Mistake 2 – Overpaying Premiums

Gold’s spot price is not the same as what you’ll pay to purchase bullion. Most people who purchase physical gold coins – usually from a well-known mint. The premium you pay will depend upon the mint as well as the handler (seller’s) markup. If you’re investing as part of a financial portfolio and not as a collector, then don’t overpay the premium just to get a “good mint.” Standard “rounds” like the American Eagle and Canadian Leaf are lower-cost and just as accepted amongst gold investors as the Credit Suisse.

Mistake 3 – Discounting Ownership of Physical Commodity

Many investors only invest in one kind of gold, often ETFs or futures. That is only one type of gold and is not guaranteed against market crashes. Physical gold (whether stored by yourself or someone else) is one of the best ways to solidify a portfolio.

Mistake 4 – Numismatics as Your Only Choice

Numismatic coins are nice and can be nostalgic for many investors, but they are not the same as .999 fine rounds. Most of their value is in their collect-ability – something that fluctuates wildly and is more market-dependent than simple gold value. IF collectors can’t afford to keep collecting, the market dries up. New finds in the same series or type of coin may also drive down values unexpectedly.

Mistake 5 – Nuggets and jewellery

The largest problem with owning pure gold nuggets or gold jewellery is that its value is a matter of opinion. They can be a great part of an investment portfolio, but by themselves they are some of the least portable options for gold investing. The value of jewellery is dependent on what someone is willing to pay for it and whether it can be tested for its actual gold content. Nuggets are similar, though not as difficult.

Avoiding these five mistakes and keeping a diverse, rounded, and thoughtful portfolio of gold to fit with the rest of your investment goals is the key to maximising both the returns you can expect over time and the security of your finances.

A further blow to Joe (Joseph R) Francis and his Girls Gone Wild trade mark

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

We can all assume Joe Francis, founder of the Girls Gone Wild videos love publicity but things don’t seem to be travelling with him too well so far this year. Having just recently lost his 7.5$ million defamation suit and being embroiled in a scandal invloved with Senator
Mark Pryor, Joe cannot even take a trick against a mere ordinary citizen.

A further blow to Joe (Joseph R) Francis and his Girls Gone Wild trade mark
In a decision by the National Arbitration Forum Girls Gone Wild have lost a case against the holder of the domain The arbitrator The Honourable Neil Anthony Brown Qc in decision FA1203001435699 dated 24th April 2012 states the complainant Path Media Holdings LLC failed in its case that the domain was registered in bad faith.

One of the factors against proving the use of “Bad faith” was that it was found by the panel that the registrant Jim Durflo could not have registered the domain in bad faith as the name was registered prior to the register of the trade mark ‘Girls Gone Wild’.
This is clearly good news for domain and website owners who have felt helpless in the past in disputes by big companies who would often make frivolous claims to acquire related domain maes knowing that the respondents normally cannot afford to the costs needed to fight such disputes.In what must have been a further blow to the Complainant is that this challenge was uncontested by the respondent.

It is clear that to establish bad faith for the purposes of the Policy, Complainant must show that the disputed domain name was registered in bad faith and has been used in bad faith. It is also clear that the criteria set out in Policy ¶ 4(b) for establishing bad faith are not exclusive, but that Complainants in UDRP proceedings may also rely on conduct that is bad faith within the generally accepted meaning of that expression.

Having regard to those principles, the Panel finds that Complainant has not established that the disputed domain name was registered and used in bad faith. That is so for the following reasons.

First, Complainant has not made out any of the criteria set out in Policy ¶ 4(b) and has not argued or shown that there are other matters that can be described as bad faith within the generally accepted meaning of that expression. Indeed, Complainant has not attempted to do so. Complainant’s entire case on the issue of bad faith is as follows: “By using the domain name, Respondent has intentionally attempted to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to Respondent’s website by creating a likelihood of confusion with the Complainant’s mark as to the source, sponsorship, affiliation, or endorsement of Respondent’s website.”
No evidence has been submitted to show that this has happened or how it happened. As panels have said on many occasions, mere assertions are not enough to prove a case and any submissions must be supported by evidence. It is certainly not enough merely to paraphrase provisions of the Policy. If a panel were to accept a case without proper submissions and evidence it would make the Policy a very inadequate and unsatisfactory procedure and it would be unfair to the vast majority of parties who present complete cases with evidence and reasoned arguments and who go to a lot of trouble and expense to do so.

Secondly, to allow a case to succeed without proof would be contrary to the plain words of the Policy, which provide that “…the Complainant must prove that each of these three elements are present.” The Panel finds that Complainant has failed to meet the burden of proof of bad faith registration and use under Policy ¶ 4(a) (iii) as it has not proved that the element now under consideration is present. See Starwood Hotels & Resorts Worldwide, Inc. v. Samjo CellTech.Ltd, FA 406512 (Nat. Arb. Forum Mar. 9, 2005) (finding that the complainant failed to establish that the respondent registered and used the disputed domain name in bad faith because mere assertions of bad faith are insufficient for a complainant to establish Policy ¶ 4(a)(iii); see also Graman USA Inc. v. Shenzhen Graman Indus. Co., FA 133676 (Nat. Arb. Forum Jan. 16, 2003) (finding that general allegations of bad faith without supporting facts or specific examples do not supply a sufficient basis upon which the panel may conclude that the respondent acted in bad faith).

Thirdly and in particular, Complainant asserts that Respondent intentionally attempts to attract, for commercial gain, Internet users to Respondent’s website by creating a likelihood of confusion with Complainant’s affiliation with the disputed domain name. But Complainant has not provided any evidence or arguments that support those allegations and it is impossible for the Panel to conclude whether they are true or not. Therefore, the Panel finds that Complainant failed to prove that Respondent registered and uses the domain name under Policy ¶ 4(b) (iv).

Fourthly, the Panel notes that Complainant’s rights in the GIRLS GONE WILD mark, according to the USPTO trademark registration, date back to June 18, 2007. The Panel notes that Respondent registered the domain name on February 3, 2006. Thus, the Panel therefore concludes that Respondent’s registration of the disputed domain name predates Complainant’s rights in the GIRLS GONE WILD mark. Consequently, the Panel holds, in keeping with established UDRP jurisprudence and practice and consistent with many UDRP decisions, that Respondent could not have registered the domain name in bad faith under Policy ¶ 4(a) (iii). See Telecom Italia S.p.A. v. NetGears LLC, FA 944807 (Nat. Arb. Forum May 16, 2007) (determining the respondent could not have registered or used the disputed domain name in bad faith where the respondent registered the disputed domain name before the complainant began using the mark); see also Aspen Grove, Inc. v. Aspen Grove, D2001-0798 (WIPO Oct. 5, 2001) (finding that it is “impossible” for the respondent to register disputed domain name in bad faith if the complainant company did not exist at the time of registration).

Gulf War illness traced to Chemicals

Monday, March 10th, 2008

A review conducted by researchers by the University of California, San Diego, has found a strong connection between exposure to specific chemicals and the Gulf War illness experienced by veterans. The symptoms are mood-cognition problems, fatigue and musculoskeletal symptoms. To be precise, this includes muscle and joint pain, memory problems, rashes, sleep issues and breathing trouble. Veterans of the Persian Gulf War have elevated rates of chronic multi-symptom health problems compared to those who were never deployed in the military or those who were deployed in other areas.

Up to one third of veterans were exposed to pesticides, nerve agents and other chemical exposures. “Convergent evidence now strongly links a class of chemicals — acetylcholinesterase inhibitors — to illness in Gulf War veterans,” Dr. Beatrice Golomb of the University of California, San Diego, said.

To protect against exposure to nerve agents, veterans were given pills known as carbamate pyridostigmine bromide which contained acetylcholinesterase inhibitors which is an enzyme that regulates the vital neurotransmitter, acetylcholine. Unfortunately, this backfired and the studies show that those who took the pill have worsened symptoms than those who did not.

“Across studies, significant positive relationships of acetylcholinesterase -related exposures to illness in GWV outnumber significant negative relationships more than chance would predict,” wrote Golomb. “The studies show a high consistency, with most showing a significant (typically strong) positive association. Few non-significant findings are present and virtually no inverse associations.”

Furthermore, it has been regrettable to note that some people have genetic variants that make them more vulnerable to such chemicals, and when exposed, these people are in more jeopardy of illness. “There is evidence that genetics have something to do with how a body handles exposure to these chemicals,” said Golomb. “Some people are genetically less able to withstand these toxins and evidence shows that these individuals have higher chance of suffering the effects of exposure.”