A Short History of Sports Photography

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The history of sports photography is tightly related to the trends of sport gaining popularity throughout human history. The technology of photography from the early 1800s onward leaped forward in bounds and aided an emerging media, sporting journalism.

The inspiration of athletics and sport in art can certainly be seen in the work of the ancient Greek masters of sculpture, however this type of expression was not as prevalent in modern sporting venues until the invention of wet-collodion and dry-plate photographic processes. These processes allowed for posed studio images on glass plates and tin-types, but were just not ‘fast’ enough for the ‘stop-action’ images we are used to seeing today.

As the 19th Century was coming to a close, in the 1880s scientific motion studies of athletes in action were produced in the United States and Germany, the technology was still not considered on the sporting field. This all changed with the advancement of photography and sports journals in the last part of the century. As the first sports journals began to appear around 1900, the public became more and more interested in the sports image, which often would include images of players on the tennis green, golfling or on the hunt for wild game.

In the history of sports photography the earliest of contributors were more concerned with the activities of the country elite, but by the end of World War I, readers of sporting journals were becoming interested in the professional athletes of American baseball and tennis. The majority of these early images were of prominent players in posed situations, giving te sense of action. Baseball players were posed with bat in hand at the plate, teams were lined up for group shots and so forth, however the ‘action’ shot was still not widely seen.

With the 1930s more and more images of athletes in action were appearing in magazines, assisted in their growth through camera systems allowing photographers shutter speeds up to 1/1000th of a second. This gave way to styles highlighting blurred subjects suggesting movement and ‘stop-action’ images of the athlete in activity. Photographers began adopting signature styles and the popularity of the genre began to grow rapidly as the public began to expect the excitement of seeing their favored athletes in ‘action.’

In 1954, Sports Illustrated – the vaunted digest of sports and athletics – premiered and suddenly the position of being a sports photographer became even more engrained in the public eye. The magazine highlighted the exploits and professional and amateur athletes the world over, increasing the need for the art form and those who practiced it. By this point, technology had more or less caught up with demand, with the advent of small, compact single lens reflex (SLR) cameras and the fast shutter speeds offered in the models. The history of sports photography is strongly tied to lens technology, as well, had advanced to offer the photographer a wide choice of methods to compress perspective and using depth of field for dramatic effect.

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Source by Wendy Pan

Filipino Short Stories – Short Stories by Filipino Writers

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Filipino short stories are creative as well innovative that succeeds in attracting the attention of the readers. There are fine short stories by the Filipino writers that seek curious attention. In this article, you will have a glimpse of some of the Filipino writers.

Filipinos writers are known for their creative, artistic and innovative talent. The Philippines is consisted of several writers and in fact, Filipinos are so talented in writing. You will get surprised that even their national heroes used the pen as a weapon to fight during the war!

Many writers have contributed largely to the publishing and the entertainment industries of the Philippines. And therefore, it will be a great thing to learn something about the Filipino writers.

Antonio Abad is one of the most famous Filipino writers who was born in 1894 and died in 1970. He was known as a poet, essayist, fictionist and playwright. El Ultimo Romantico, Dagohoy, El Campeon, La Oveja de Nathan are some of the novels that Antonio Abad had written. He made his contribution in the literary field by becoming a professor in the University of the Philippines and Far Eastern University. His son also was a poet.

Martin Abellana is another writer from Filipino who contributed remarkably in the Philippine literature. He was born in 1904 and died in 1989. Besides being a writer, he was also a teacher. Some of his best known novels are Kinabuhi, Basuni sa Katingala, Awit sa Gugma, Tulisok sa Tanlag, Kaulit sa Kalipay and Ang Kalayo sa Sulad.

Another notable Filipino author who made a remarkable contribution to the literary filed of the Philippines was Norberto L. Romualdez who was born in 1875 and died in 1941. Some of his famous writings are An Anak han Manaranggot, Bisayan Grammar and An Pagtabang ni San Miguel. Apart from being a Filipino writer, he was also a statesman, politician and jurist. During his time, this writer was known as the Father of the Law on the National Language.

These Filipino authors, without a doubt, gave pride to all Filipino people with their great and remarkable literary contribution. Because of certain reasons, Filipinos are inspired to become writers and become well-known not only in the Philippines but recognized worldwide. And therefore, it is certainly a good thing to enjoy or study about some of the creative writing like novels, fictions, non-fiction or short stories by Filipino writers.

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Source by Rakesh Ramubhai Patel

Advantages of Writing Movie Reviews

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Television commercials on new releases are enough to entice millions of movie lovers who run off to the movie theatres to watch those movies. These movie commercials are created to hoodwink the audience. A commercial tends to show that a movie is simply amazing, whereas when a movie buff actually sees it, he finds it to be a complete flop picture. Just by watching these commercials, movie buffs run to theaters and waste their money to watch flop films that do not even stay in the theaters for a week. There is one simple way through which movie buffs can actually save their money. They can visit various movie review websites, if they are keen to know about new releases. From these movie review sites, movie buffs come to know people’s opinions about a particular movie. On the basis of the review a movie buff can take his decision (whether to watch it in the theater or categorize it as a flop movie).

Movie review writing has become quite popular these days. With numerous movie review sites out there in the Internet, many people are actually writing genuine and useful film reviews. In fact, many content writing firms are hiring talented copywriters to write genuine and proper film reviews and then, posting these reviews to various movie sites. Apart from E book writing, blog writing and posting, website content writing and article writing, the firms rendering online content writing services, are urging their copywriters to write reviews on the newly released films. Individual movie critics are also writing film reviews. By checking the reviews, people can actually take their decision on watching a movie. A bad review of a newly released movie will definitely deter a person from watching that movie.

Most of the movie review websites are free sites where people can visit and read reviews any time they wish. The user can also register to some of the movie sites. This allows him to write reviews about the films he has watched. After all, others might also be interested to know about the films that you have watched. Registration is very simple procedure. All you need to do is to follow the steps and get your name registered in the particular site.

Among the varied movie review sites The New Release Hall, IMBD and the rottontomatoes.com offer the best reviews of the newly released films. The registration process is simple and once you are a registered member, you can read free film reviews and write and submit your own reviews as well. A bad movie can spoil your mood and interest. Moreover, it also burns a hole in your pocket as you spend dollars to watch a flop movie. So it is always better to visit one of the movie review sites, read the review of a newly released movie and then, decide whether it is worth watching in the theater.

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Source by Bhavesh B

Freelance Writers Must Deliver Unique Content

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With all the changes in search algorithms, many web content writers seem to get confused about writing quality and unique content. You can certainly write a quality blog post and still have it rank poorly in the search. The reason could be that the post, even though unique in nature, didn’t actually provide any unique value to the user.

When people search the web, they are looking for specific information. They may want an answer to a question or advice on which to make an important buying decision. Let’s look at some characteristics that indicate blog and web content isn’t unique unless it delivers unique value to the reader.

The First Key To Successful Blog and Web Content Is Quality

Google’s quality guidelines indicates quality content must be unique, valuable, and engaging. These guidelines also ask the question – “Would I do this if search engines didn’t exist?” Quality content provides real answers to people’s questions. It’s content that people can easily digest and appreciate because it entertains them or tells them how to do something. Quality content is content that gets quoted, linked to, and shared.

Quality Content Must Be Unique

It’s certainly not easy to come up with a totally original blog post idea. Chances are that if you Google the topic, someone has already written about it. The simple solution to this dilemma is to approach the subject from a different angle. Instead of writing “How To Write A Successful Blog”, write about “5 Ways Your Blog Can Fail”. If you make every word count in short sentences, using simple precise words, you are on the right track to being unique.

Unique Content Must Provide Unique Value

In order to deliver quality content with a unique value you must understand your audience. What questions are they asking in social media networks? What are their worries or goals? You can also share solutions to problems you’ve personally experienced.

People are defining the quality of web content in social media. It’s very important that all content writers listen to what they are saying to their friends and co-workers.

We must give definite answers and not just direct them to another place where they can find the answers.

Your blog and web content must not appear to only be a sales brochure. Instead, focus on delivering quality content that helps build relationships. You must first build trust and credibility with your target audience. Once that is accomplished, the sales will come.

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Source by Ken Bradford

Writing Business Letters – Tutorial 4: "No" Letters

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Remember the time when you attended a job interview and thought you had done exceptionally well? As you traveled home, you thought about how well your qualifications and experience matched what the firm wanted; you thought about how impressed your friends would be when you went to work for The Prestigious Company; you envisaged yourself in the nice new office that went with the job, and the extra money you'd have for your family. Wow, life was great!

A week later when you received a letter with The Prestigious Company's logo on it, you felt it could be a letter of offer, but then a cold chill came over you and you thought it might be to advise that you had been unsuccessful. You took the letter inside your house, poured yourself a drink and eventually sat down to open the letter that was about your future. When you read it it said:

Dear Mr Yourname,

Thank you for applying for a job with our company.

Unfortunately, you weren't successful on this occasion as another applicant's qualifications and experience were a better match to our needs.

Thanks for your interest in our company.

Yours sincerely

BAD Writer, Human Resources Manager

Your heart sank into the pit of your stomach and you felt a surge of shattering disappointment. This was the eighth job for which you had applied … nobody wanted you.

At the end of the day, bad news has to be conveyed just as good news does. However, the way in which it is conveyed can create a different response for the recipient. There's a mnemonic: KKK which stands for: K – Kiss; K – Kick; K – Kiss again.

This suggests that what we should do is write something positive first (Kiss), then deliver the bad news (Kick) and Kiss again with another positive statement. Here's an example of a "No" job letter that follows this formula. See if you can identify the KKK elements:

Dear Mr Yourname

Thank you for applying for a job with The Prestigious Company.

We have considered your application and were very impressed with the breadth of experience you have and your excellent academic achievements. In particular, we were impressed with the work you have done with the disabled in Chicago.

We received applications from many well qualified and experienced applicants and it was difficult for us to choose just one applicant to fill this position. On this occasion, we have chosen another applicant whose experience is more suitable.

Your interest in our company is appreciated and I wish you every success with your job search.

Yours sincerely

GOOD Writer, Human Resources Manager

This type of letter is of course, still disappointing for recipients. But letting them know that they were worthwhile candidates, that there were numbers of other equally well qualified candidates and you found someone who was more suitable, is a less damaging approach.

The last sentence helps to create goodwill for the company.

Obviously, there are dozens of different scenarios for bad news letters and I can't deal with every scenario here. If you remember the formula and sit in the receiver's chair ie, think what it would be like for you to receive the letter you write, you'll do a better job.

The trick is to say "no" or deliver the bad news with compassion for the dignity and feelings of the recipient. If you follow the formula, you'll find it works well.

Copyright 2005, Robin Henry

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Source by Robin Henry

Who Invented Dell Computers?

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The invention and the history of the Dell computer is quite interesting. First of all, it was in 1984 when Michael Dell, a student at the University of Texas at Austin, created the company PC's Limited. He only had a starting capital of $ 1,000. So what he did was he started working out of his dorm room to build personal computers made from stock components. These computers were to be IBM compatible because that was the standard at that time. If a computer were to function with various pieces of hardware, it needed to be IMB compatible since hardware and software programs were being designed to be IBM compatible.

It is when Michael Dell figured that selling computers directly to customers to determine customer need that he dropped out of college. His family then extended him the $ 300,000 in expansion capital that he needed to make his business take off.

A success

It was in 1985 that the Turbo PC was developed and it sold for less than $ 800. It contained an Intel 8088 processor that ran at 8 MHz, which is considerably slower than the computers that we use today. Computers today are running in gigahertz, which are hundreds and even thousands of times faster than the 8 MHz processor that Michael Dell was installing in his computers at the time. But the truth is that this was the best that could be done in 1985. The technology was developing.

But there was an aspect of PC's Limited that was unique from the rest and continues to be this way today. It is the fact that customers could custom order their computers rather than buy a computer that was already assembled. This allowed individuals to receive computers at lower prices than what they could get with their competitors. This definitely worked because PC's Limited grossed $ 73 million in its first year of trading.

The beginning of Dell

It was in 1988 that PC's Limited became Dell. Prior to that, the company already had 11 international operations occurring, so the company was quite large. There were on site services set up to compensate for the lack of businesses acting as service centers for Dell computers. It was in 1990 that Dell attempted to sell through club houses, but had very little success with this. So it is then that Dell went right back to its direct to customer sales.

In 1996, Dell started selling computers on its website. An individual could go onto the website and custom design their computer so that it would be built to their specifications. From there, it would be shipped to the customer's home. Financing was made available so that individuals would be able to acquire their computers easily.

In 1999, Dell became the largest personal computer seller when they took over Compaq computers. Their revenue topped $ 25 billion in 2002. Also in 2002, Dell started selling televisions and other electronic items. They now have Dell brand printers, LCD TVs, and much more. Because of the expansion beyond computers, Dell was changed to Dell Inc. in 2003.

It is amazing that this billion dollar company started in a dorm room with $ 1000 in starting capital. And Michael Dell has always stood by the principles of letting individuals have the capability to design their own machine. Although there are Dell computers now sold in various retail outlets, a person can still go to the website and design the machine of their dreams. And Dell also offers a lot of assistance for individuals needing help with their computers. They offer on-site services and so much more for the computer user so that they can have the best experience possible.

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Source by Amy Nutt

The Meeting and Its Significance

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A meeting is the most fundamental form or unit of interaction among humans. As humans have to constantly interact with other humans, meetings cannot be avoided. Hence, the meeting has become a part and parcel of our lives. Every meeting has an agenda, the raison d’etre for the meeting, which is entwined with the proposed topics of discussion of the meeting. Every meeting is attended by a certain number of attendees, is presided over by a chairperson. The minutes of a meeting represent everything that is discussed at the meeting. The minutes, in other words, are a record of the meeting proceedings. The date and time of a meeting are collectively known as the meeting schedule.

Birthday Party

Meetings may be of various kinds. A birthday party is a meeting of the invited guests and the host, whose birthday it is. Presents are exchanged (the host also has to give return presents to his or her guests as a token of gratitude for their presence), games are played, prizes are won and food is served. The main meeting agenda for a birthday party is the host’s birthday. If anyone is assigned the task of documenting the meeting minutes of a birthday party, they will record all the games and the other events conducted at the party, how everyone entertained themselves, the nature of the food that was served, etc.

Business Conference

A business conference is a meeting of a more serious nature. In a business conference, business strategies are delineated, goals are set, courses of action are charted out for the growth and expansion of the business. Such a meeting, unlike a birthday party, need not always end on a positive note. A business conference may end in discord and disagreement. Also, it may be decided at the conference to sack some people in the interests of the company. It is mandatory to take down the meeting minutes of a business conference. To stimulate the meeting management process, certain brilliant meeting management applications have been invented. A meeting management application is a meeting management software that helps to automate the meeting process. Reliable meeting management software can do wonders to a meeting.

War

A war is also a meeting. The meeting agenda of a war consists chiefly of fighting and of defeating the adversary, apart from grabbing whatever spoils there are to be seized. A war is a meeting that results in killing and death.

Summit

A Summit is a meeting between different nations. At a Summit, different countries meet to discuss how they can conserve the environment, how they can arrest climate change, how they can curtail emissions. The meeting minutes of a Summit also have to be recorded in detail so that politicians, the media and the public understand whether the Summit was fruitful or whether it ended in a stalemate (as most Summits do) on reading the meeting minutes. Nuclear programs and policies of nations may also be discussed at Summits where the meeting agenda is nuclear disarmament, no first use and proliferation policy, etc. Summits can also be economic Summits. In economic Summits, the meeting agenda that is tabled for discussion comprises economic and trade policies, the issue of subsidies, trade reforms and trade norms of nations and whether such norms and policies are in line with World Trade Organization (WTO) policies.

Political Meeting

A meeting can also be a political meeting. The chief purpose of any political meeting is to procure more supporters for the party that has summoned the meeting. Charismatic political leaders can influence the masses by the sheer force of their words. As a result, political meetings lead many people to repudiate their own parties, switch loyalties, tergiversate and defect to the opposite camp i.e. the party, which is conducting the meeting. The main aims of a political meeting are to propagate the party that is hosting the meeting as the best political party of the land and as the party, which will bring the maximum number of benefits to the populace, if elected, and to create as many renegades as possible in rival parties and induct them into the party that is conducting the meeting. Chief whips and bigwigs of political parties can be very smart meeting presenters or chairpersons. With their power and charm, they can hold sway over thousands at a caucus. The meeting agenda of a political meeting is framed by a political party with a view to garnering as much popularity and support as possible among the electorate, so that the party can trounce the opposing parties during an election. Most political leaders stop at nothing to attain their objectives.

A political meeting can also be a political meeting between different nations such as the G-8 meetings. In such high-profile political meetings, member nations discuss what stance they should adopt towards non-member nations, whether they should modify the rules and policies of international bodies such as the Security Council and the United Nations and other matters that concern the world.

Religious Meeting

A meeting can also be a religious meeting. The attendees of a religious meeting are sometimes known as pilgrims while their journey to the religious meeting is called a pilgrimage. The person who calls a religious meeting is generally an important person of that particular religion. The pope can call a meeting of the Christian clergy at the Vatican in a bid to discuss how the tenets of Christianity can be applied to this frenzied world in order to improve values among people, uplift the poor, etc. On Christmas Eve and on Christmas Day, every year, the pope addresses a congregation of people, who assemble at St. Peter’s Square, adjacent to the Vatican, in the hopes of receiving the pontiff’s blessings and for paying tribute to Jesus Christ.

A conclave of Christian cardinals meets at the St. Peter’s Basilica in order to elect a new pope when the existing pope breathes his last.

Millions of Muslims gather at Haj and Mecca in order to pay homage to Islamic saints and to the Prophet. The clerics, Imams, and the muezzins urge the acolytes of Islam to pray to Allah.

The primary aim of religious meetings is to inculcate values and morality among followers and to inform the common public of God and His ways. Other religious communities also conduct religious meetings with the same goal i.e. the spreading of spirituality by expounding their own religious doctrines. Sometimes, religious meetings are also conducted with the aim of converting people of other religions to the faith of the group that has called the meeting.

Conscious and Unconscious Meetings

Now the meetings I have described above are ‘conscious’ meetings, which means that they are attended consciously by the attendees. But in our lives, we generally attend several meetings ‘unconsciously’. When we meet someone on our way to work who informs us that an accident has taken place further down the road, we are attending an ‘unconscious’ meeting. When we chat with someone over a cup of coffee at the cafeteria, we are participating in an ‘unconscious’ meeting. When we are with our families, relatives and friends, we are actually in an unconscious meeting. It is very strange but the truth is that we learn a lot more from unconscious meetings than from conscious meetings and that we attend far more unconscious meetings than conscious meetings. Moreover, even if there is no proper meeting agenda in unconscious meetings, as there is in conscious meetings, the topics of unconscious meetings may make for very valid and practical meeting agenda.

Abnormal Meetings

Do not get frightened about what I am going to say next. All the meetings that I have mentioned so far have been normal meetings. But those who are psychic and believe in ghosts claim that there are paranormal or abnormal or weird meetings too. I take this claim with a pinch of salt, as I do not believe in ghosts or in the paranormal. However, since ghost believers insist that there are ghosts, I am compelled to write this paragraph on paranormal meetings. Paranormal or abnormal or weird meetings constitute a planchette where the spirit of a dead person is called and invoked by a bunch of paranormal junkies or weirdos. The purpose of the meeting or the meeting agenda is to ask the spirit or ghost some questions relating to his or her life on Earth and relating to his or her afterlife, wherever he or she is now. They say that when murdered people are called from their graves, they can reveal the names of the people who slew them. This, I consider, is definitely the single most important plus point of such meetings as such revelations can bring to book the wicked.

We have so far discussed the diverse types of meetings, conscious and unconscious meetings, abnormal or weird meetings. We have also specified the meeting agenda of the different meetings. We have noted that meetings are an inevitable and unavoidable part of our lives. Now we shall explore how meetings have affected us and the significance of meetings.

How Significant is the Meeting?

For expatiating on the significance of meetings, I have to tell you of a mega meeting that occurred recently and which I had the honor of attending. It was Christmas day. I was gathered with thousands of people. Exactly where we had gathered, I cannot recall. All that I remember was that the place was an enormous square. It could have been an Italian piazza – St. Mark’s Square in Venice or St. Peter’s Square, flanking the Vatican. It could have also been somewhere in London, in Trafalgar Square, perhaps, in the vicinity of the Parliament Building and the Westminster Abbey. But when I rack my brains I remember a wide thoroughfare with an arch at one end. So, it could easily have been the Champs Elysees. Or was it in front of the Taj Mahal? The meeting venue might have been before the Taj because I can recall an impressive, spotless, white mausoleum at the venue. But there was an edifice with colonnades. Then was it near the Parthenon that the meeting was conducted? In any event, let me not accord too much importance to the meeting venue or the spot where the event was hosted. Let me get back to the substance of the meeting.

The meeting was attended by thousands, in fact, by millions of people. They were a strange motley, an odd potpourri. Some were dressed in hides, some in togas and robes, others in breeches, gowns and Victorian attire. Yet there were others accoutered in saris, salwar kameez and kimonos. There were others who donned jeans and T-shirts. I was wearing a pair of trousers and a shirt. At first, I could not identify myself with the crowd. I thought it was all a fancy dress party. I gravitated towards the men and women wearing jeans and T-shirts. The folks with patrician features were wearing togas and robes. Some forbidding looking Turks even had swords, daggers and scimitars. When I was totally bewildered and wondering whether I should leave, somebody from the crowd rose. He was so tall and imposing, he must have been thrice my height. And that is no joke because I am 6 feet 5 inches. Though his face was wizened, he still looked handsome. His chest was bare. He was wearing a cloth around his waist. He introduced himself as Zeus, the King of the Gods. Everybody cheered and so I cheered. He said that we had assembled in order to understand the significance of the meeting. Then two women came up and sat on either side of Zeus. One of the women seemed very familiar to me. I knew I had seen her somewhere before. I was struggling to remember who she was when Zeus introduced her as his daughter, Aphrodite, the Goddess of Love. And then it came back in a flash. I had seen her broken effigy, Venus de Milo, at the Louvre. The other woman who was sitting on the other side of Zeus was my patron, the lady who had asked me to attend the meeting.

The men in togas proceeded towards the rostrum. One handsome man started to deliver a speech, the moment he got to the pulpit. “But Brutus is an honourable man…” he reiterated. The teeming millions were enthralled by his words. My comrades in jeans and T-shirts and I were mesmerized by his being. The speaker frankly admitted that he was remembered for his prowess in rabble rousing. I could not believe that I was gazing up at Mark Anthony.

Suddenly there was chaos. The men and women in hides started to behave savagely, charging at everybody with their flint stones and crude tools and implements. Some of them did not even resemble humans, they seemed like apes and gorillas on their hind legs. However, Zeus managed to pacify them. He said, “let us honor these ancestors of ours, these wonderful Homo sapiens and Stone Age people.” The multitudes at the meeting applauded. The Homo sapiens and Stone Age people appeared to be greatly mollified and even looked apologetic and quietly retreated to their places. Gladiators danced and the meeting venue took the shape of the Colosseum, momentarily. Then a young man in white and bearing a cross appeared from nowhere and we all stood up to give him a standing ovation. Zeus himself got up from his throne and said, “Praise be to Jesus Christ, whose birthday it is today and who is the Savior of humankind.”

Charlemagne looked a bit old to me but strong nevertheless. Constantine was constantly chatting with Christ. He did not seem to want to participate in the meeting. But Attila the Hun cut a sorry figure for himself. He looked a caricature of himself. Not only was he unable to inspire fear in people, but he also looked ridiculous in a pair of acid-washed jeans and an orange T-shirt. Apparently, my group, the men and women in jeans and T-shirts and holding laptops, forced him to dress in that fashion. Attila was near tears, which was absolutely shocking, considering his reputation as a Hun. Even Zeus could not console him. Only Christ managed to soothe the man. Attila smiled broadly at Jesus who blessed him. But the hitch was that Attila was no longer Attila.

The Turks marched forward, some walking, some on horseback. All of them bowed to Christ. I was surprised at this gesture. It is not something we see often in our world. It was only at the meeting that I saw such peculiar sights.

Elizabeth I walked up to the stage straightaway, took up the microphone and said, “In honour of Lord Zeus and his daughters, I would like to declare this meeting to be a superb meeting. I would like to see more such meetings held in the modern world. Also women should have a greater role in everything.” She was the first person to comment on information technology and the many benefits of meeting software. Her aides, Lord Raleigh and Lord Walsingham produced a laptop from somewhere and handed the gadget to her. She opened it and began to type something in it, pretty speedily!

Some Mogul emperors like Akbar, Shah Jehan and Aurangzeb strode across the platform with their heads held high. They waved to the hordes like celebrities do but chose to say nothing. Hitler arrived, a bit late, sought the blessings of Zeus and Christ and announced that he was a ‘changed man’.

I was noticing a distinct trend at the meeting. Only the legendary and the dead were occupying the podium while those of us who are still alive were watching them as spectators. However, Bill Clinton caused much embarrassment to the meeting organizers by jumping onto the dais with a female companion. But Zeus took this sudden liberty in his stride and said instead, “Let the man come up and speak if he wants to.”

Bill Clinton spoke highly of software that helps in meeting management and in business process automation and exhorted everybody present – mythical, dead or alive – to use such meeting management software. He introduced his female companion as Monica something and said that he would not be able to say much more because his wife, Hillary would be waiting for him, back home. Jesus Christ told Bill that he was committing adultery, which is a serious transgression. Bill kept mum. He seemed reluctant to change his ways. Both Christ and Zeus took a grave view of this and looked troubled. However, Attila and Adolf Hitler assured Zeus and Christ that this was no issue, that once Bill died, he would surely alter his ways just as they had done.

Countless eminent grandees arrived at the meeting. It was a feast for the eyes to see them all in person. Lots of delicious food was served to everybody. We gorged on spaghetti, roast turkey, bouillabaisse, lamb quiche, biryani, shepherd’s pie, pilaf, cassoulet, vol-au-vent, sauerkraut, steak, sushi, sashimi, truffles, pudding, black forest cake and ice cream.

Towards the end of the meeting, the lady who was sitting quietly on the other side of Zeus rose. I was waiting for a long time for her to make an entrance onto the stage, as she was my patron and the person who had invited me to the meeting. She was a strikingly beautiful woman, past her youth, but stunning, nonetheless. She seemed detached from her surroundings, not bothered about the adulation she was receiving. Zeus stood up and said, “This, as you know, is my daughter Athena, the Goddess of Wisdom. As she is the wisest of all of us, she will deliver the valedictory speech, the last and final oration of this august meeting!”

Athena stood tall and straight on the stage. A compere, somebody I have seen many times at the Academy Awards, handed her the microphone. Athena cleared her throat.

“Good evening, my friends, my sister Aphrodite, my brother Jesus the Christ, and my father,” she began, “we have come a long, long way from the time we started off as Stone Age and Java, Peking and Neanderthal men and women. My Homo sapien and Paleolithic friends will testify to that,” she said, extending her arm in the direction of the section where the Homo sapiens and the Paleolithic people were seated.

“We have marched steadily forward in civilization because we have met and interacted with one another. Every meeting has taught us something. Even meetings, where we have encountered death and destruction, have had something to teach. Is that not true?” the goddess asked in her commanding as well as mellifluous voice. To which everybody, including me, answered “Aye,” in perfect unison.

“Every meeting that we have experienced has helped us to progress and become more productive. Every meeting has taught us good from bad, right from wrong, even if it has ended in failure. And we have participated and will participate in an infinite number of meetings. When I am asked the question, ‘how significant has the meeting been for humanity?’ I say that the meeting has been immensely significant for us. It has shaped our lives, it has spurred us on to excel, it has enabled us to have control over our destinies. And the meeting minutes that have been generated from the meetings have benefited us tremendously. You cannot bring structure and order unless written records are in place. People of today say that knowledge is power but mere abstract knowledge is useless for society. Knowledge has to be documented properly, chronologically and in an unbiased manner if any inference is to be drawn from such knowledge.

“I am glad that all happenings and events since the dawn of civilization have been chronicled in encyclopedias, journals and historical treatises for the benefit of posterity. Unfortunately, though a large chunk of events has been documented, a large chunk has got lost. It is due to this human lapse that there are large gaps in history. Therefore, I repeat that every meeting should be documented as this one is being,” and she glanced in my direction. I nodded and indicated that I was recording the minutes of the meeting in my meeting software in my laptop.

“Also,” Athena proceeded, “certain meeting management software has come up that is helping people to record meeting minutes easily and swiftly. It has taken us eons to come to the stage when we are able to develop great meeting software. In order to honor all those – Stone Age people, the people of the ancient civilizations, the people of the medieval ages – who have toiled hard and passed knowledge and craftsmanship down the ages so that new-age people can build meeting software, something that they could not in their times, we must ensure that we use this fantastic meeting software. Let the efforts of our predecessors not go in vain. Let us thank them for what they have done and bequeathed to us. The entire history of humankind is nothing but a record of meeting agenda and meeting minutes and this history is replete with examples of the passage and transfer of knowledge so that ultimately humankind wins. The meeting minutes of the ages indicate a celebration of humankind, a celebration of life. Thus the meeting is a celebration of life!”

I had recorded her words verbatim and I have quoted them verbatim too. The meeting was spellbinding. You want to know where you can meet these great folks? You will find them in books and encyclopedias, libraries and archives, on the Internet, if you are fond of shortcuts, saying the same thing in different ways, uttering ultimately one message that all prehistoric, historical and modern events and meetings, tragic or not were and are for the celebration of life. That is how significant the meeting is for us.

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Source by Damien Ghosh

Memoir Ghost Writer

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Do you need your family’s exploits, or those of a particular family member, chronicled by a memoir ghost writer? Chances are you do. Every year, thousands of people want to write a memoir about either their own lives or the lives of their loved ones. Most times, a representative of someone who may be dying or has fallen ill chooses to facilitate the creation of a memoir, biography, autobiography or life story, based on the entire or part of the life and times of a beloved family member.

Sometimes someone wants to finally put his or her own life down on paper, having a fascinating story to tell about how they ran a business, discovered something new, or otherwise has an incredible history to relate. Such a person clearly wants to write his or her intriguing memoirs, but in many cases is simply unable to do so. This can be due to not having the needed writing or English language skills, or not having enough time or other resources to put toward this very important task. Lots of people, therefore, would like to hire the services of a professional memoir ghost writer.

When looking for a ghost, the best method is to research your potential writer’s career and how many memoirs he or she has penned. Were the ghost writer’s various memoirs published, and can you view samples from them, are questions you may ask. In some cases, it may not matter much whether the memoirs were commercially published or sold well, due to the memoir ghost writer only working on a project for the sake of the family’s memories, posterity and inheritance, not needing the memoirs to be marketed or saleable. Often, a family merely wants something professional down on paper for its children’s sakes and nothing else.

In order to find a great memoir ghost writer, research your prospective writer’s portfolio and resume, asking for several samples to go by. Try your level best to establish a close rapport with the memoir ghost writer. Make sure you have ample communication lines open, so that you can work closely with your writer to ensure that the project will turn out as beautifully and memorably as you require for your memoir or that of your beloved family member. Finally, be sure to set aside enough of a budget to pay your memoir ghost writer, as this is always a needed concern.

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Source by Karen S Cole

Louis Theroux – Transgender Kids – BBC2

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If you have not watched Louis Theroux 'Transgender Kids documentary broadcast on BBC2 on Sunday 5th April – I recommend you grab the chance to watch it now on BBC iPlayer. I realize that may not be an option for anyone outside of the UK, but hopefully, as the program explores Transgender Kids in California, it will become available elsewhere – sometimes even on YouTube.

There are now a growing number of documentsaries on this topic and on my Transgender Awareness Workshops I still use extracts from the Barbara Walters ABC documentary from 2007 – My Secret Self. That thankfully is still freely available on YouTube. Unfortunately in the past UK produced documentaries have not been well produced and are often insensitive to issues like specific pronouns. Transgender Kids is even excellent.

Louis Theroux approaches the topic very sensitively and in particular gives the transgender kids themselves plenty of space to express themselves without too much direction. OK, for me, the program had too much emphasis on surgery and that is a huge issues that has to be addressed. In the UK there are an estimated 300,000 to 500,000 people who are gender non conforming yet less than 5000 have actually applied for a gender recognition certificate to change their legal gender – and only about 15,000 have thought clinical support. So the vast majority of trans people remain in secret or have found a way to deal with their gender issues without medical or surgical treatment.

Sadly it's clear that many of trans people remain in secret through fear. The Charity PACE reported on a four year study last year that almost 50% of transgender kids had attempted suicide compared to about 6% of all 16-24 years olds. Research in the USA in 2007 shows that children who are not supported by their parents are 4 times more likely to attempt suicide than those who are supported. I hope that parents of transgender kids who see this documentary will see clearly the value of supporting their children.

One of the key issues addressed in the program was that of age. Is a child of five, old enough to make decisions that will impact the rest of their lives? Reading a number of comments on a Guardian Article about the program it's clear that this is still a huge issue for people, though what is also clear is that most people simply do not understand how young people are treated and and worse, most of the commentators were referring to the journalist's much less detailed article and had not actually watched the program itself.

The first important point to understand is that transgender kids do not undergo hormonal or surgical treatment until they reach puberty. As we saw in the program, there are different degrees of "Gender Dysphoria" which is the under condition condition where a person experiences persistent discomfort or distress due to feeling that there is a mismatch between their biological sex and gender identity. We still do not know exactly what causes this – but there is growing evidence that is the result of hormonal imbalances during fetal development.

Although the UK is not as advanced in its treatment of transgender kids as the USA, there is a specialist Gender Identity Service for all gender non conforming children at the Tavistock and Portman Clinic in London and Leeds which will start treatment at sunset of puberty. This treatment is to administrator hormone blockers that suspend puberty. That means that the children will not experience the immediate irreversible effects of puberty which are known to be the primary trigger for suicidal actions. Hormone blockers do not cause any permanent changes. If the child stops treatment they will continue with normal pubertal development

But it does then allow time for full psychiatric assessment to take place and for the child to continue to live in their associated gender until they are ready to start the permanent treatment of cross gender hormones at about 14 and surgery from about 16, if that is the right course of treatment. As we saw in the documentary not all transgender kids want full gender reassignment.

I particularly liked Louis' final comment. "The choice to transition involves the possibility of social rejection and a lifetime of commitment to medicine, but it is also the chance to exercise the most fundamental right we have – The right to be ourselves. be knowing who it is we really are. "

Right now it seems that the only choice we have is a rigid binary of "man or woman" despite increasing evidence that in reality there are many different possibilities. What we need is a more fluid approach to gender and language that allows us greater choice. To me the most interesting child in the program was Cole / Crystal who is living as both male and female depending on how he / she feels today.

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Source by Rikki Arundel

Mechanism of Effective Letter Writing

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The need and demand to write effective letters has existed for long as a means of communication between two individuals. It holds a key importance in all aspects of life including social, personal, and professional.

However, in the present days, the importance of letters has been overpowered by the electronic media including phones, mobiles, and emails. These medium do not actually require writing a letter to put across an individual’s point of view but even then it is believed that the impact an effective letter can generate is unique in its own way.

If anyone wishes to streamline their communication and put across their point of view, then no electronic media can dominate the power of an effective and well-constructed letter.

Initiating the letter is the most challenging thing. Many people are often confused how to start the letter and some are paralyzed at the prospect of having to fill the sheet. After that another important tip to start effective letter writing is to draft a letter. Drafting is a rough sheet or an early version of the actual writing piece. In the sheet the individual can write all the words and sentences that come to his or her mind and then form a rough piece of the final letter. Write and re-write again and again so as to get a final edited version. Then, it is important that the writer knows the purpose of the letter that should be clear, precise, and effective. The purpose of the letter should be in the mind of the writer and should be presented in a way that it potentially reaches the mind of the reader.

Then another important aspect is the type of content. The content should be well organized in a form of effective paragraphs. The paragraph should be short and precise with simple and contemporary language. The spellings and grammar should also be checked again and again with utmost care. Vocabulary should also be within the experiential domain that the readers can easily understand. Use of language should be in accordance to the type of letter. For business letters, usage of formal language is appropriate with catchy headlines in order to draw the attention of potential reader.

Then, another important aspect is the length of the letter. In the busy lifestyle today, people don’t prefer reading long letters. So, the content should be brief and explanative, whilst putting across the actual point of view or the purpose of the letter. Some even put bullets in official letters to put across some important points in a precise and straightforward manner.

The letter should be ended with a clear conclusion or an ending statement. When the final copy is ready, read the letter twice or thrice to check out few errors and then rectify those effectively.

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Source by Jennie Amit Gandhi

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