Garden Ideas for a More Beautiful and Successful Garden

Your garden can be a decorative feature of your yard, enticing you to pick the fresh vegetables and even spend time weeding, watering and caring for your plants. Here are some ideas for how to make your garden an oasis!

Creating a raised bed is a secret of more advanced gardeners that you can do too. It takes a bit of strength to carry railroad ties or other lumber into place, drive metal rods in to reinforce the lumber once the dirt is in place, and of course, pile the soil in to create the bed. You’ll find that it is easier to mow around the edges of a raised garden as well, and you can work from the sides with less bending over.

If you think ‘natural fertilizer’ means smelly manure, think again! There are bags of dried manure available which have little or no smell and give a great boost to your plants. Some areas have sheep and other manure as well as cow manure, select what is best for the plants you are planning to plant.

A traditional way to keep pests away from your garden is to plan marigolds, especially around tomato plants. It adds a little color to the garden as well, and you might find that you want to create a little ‘flower space’ in the garden area as well.

If you have the space and love cats, you can plant catnip in an area on the edge of the garden. Cats that love catnip will roll around in it and go nuts, so keep it a little bit away from the vegetables! It’s a beautiful and unusual way to enhance your garden. Beware – catnip tends to return pretty aggressively each year, so make sure you’ve got a dedicated space for it.

If you’re growing tomatoes and remember the family garden with scrap wood stakes and bedsheet ties, look for ‘tomato cages’ which will help you guide and support your tomato plants as they grow. These are cone-shaped metal cages which stick into the ground. As the tomato plants grow (some grow very large, and the tomatoes can be heavy!) you can use the tomato cage wires to support the branches of the plant. You may find the metallic appearance of some tomato cages less attractive, so consider using some outdoor spray paint to harmonize them with your garden in green or white – or even red!…

How to Get a Job in Computer Forensics

Over the last year there has been a dramatic increase in both the demand and salaries of computer forensics workers. In a recent UK study, the average minimum salary had increased 17% in one year. Because of the increase of demand for these industry professionals, getting a job in computer forensics has become an attractive option for both graduates and people who are looking to diversify in the IT industry. For such a specialized occupation, job opportunities are relatively plentiful. This doesn’t mean that there is an overabundance of jobs, more that there are certainly enough jobs for willing and able job seekers to secure a position.

There are computer forensics jobs for both employees and consultants available; many government organizations such as the military and law enforcement are in need of Computer Forensics workers. There may also be positions available for people to work for themselves in a computer forensics business or as a computer forensics consultant. For these self employed positions extensive experience and knowledge of the industry is required to establish legitimacy, as well as constant upgrading of skills, techniques and knowledge. For many, self employment is out of reach through lack of experience or market availability; i.e. you need a geographical location where a consulting business will get enough customers, so this rules out everything except larger cities.

What is more in reach of most aspiring computer forensics experts is gaining a position within a government organization or established business. Most jobs require a degree in the field, as well as at least 2 years of experience. Occasionally, extensive experience will be taken in the place of a degree, or extensive education in the place of experience. Experience in other areas of IT is often looked upon favorably, but remember that computer forensics is a highly specialized industry so general computer knowledge will not transfer into a computer forensics job.

Most employers are looking for completion of a Bachelors Degree, certifications for static disk analysis/forensics as well as hardware, software, a CCE certification, and completed courses in court room testifying and criminal justice procedure. On top of this most are looking for 2 years experience. This may sound a lot of education and experience, but for a technical job such as this it is usually industry standards to have at least this much experience. If you are interested in forensics, start familiarizing yourself with the tools used by companies as often this knowledge will translate well when put on your resume.

In order to gain a job in computer forensics but lack experience, look for entry level positions in companies which may be related to your field of choice, it then becomes a lot easier to move up to a forensics job. There are still a lot of positions available in computer forensics and this is only going to increase as technology becomes more and more integrated in to our lives. With the right education and experience the industry of computer forensics is an attractive profession for many individuals either looking for a change in their IT job, or entering/graduating into the field.…

Disturbing Garden Dark Haiku

Due to my super hectic work schedule running a seasonal business right now, my yard and gardens are in dire need of attention. I have been working on both in bits and pieces of spare time, but feel as if I am fighting a losing battle.

While driving home from work last evening, I admired house after house with perfectly landscaped yards and gardens bursting to life with color. However, when I arrived home, I was painfully aware of just how bad a shape my own are in.

I wrote this Haiku to honor (in the darkest sense) my sticks-and-pine-cone-laden yard and creepy looking cottage gardens that have taken on a disturbing look of their own.

Surely, there must be someone else out there with a garden that even bugs and wildlife avoid! If you do, don’t be shy; please share your story in the comment section and God speed!

Spine-Chilling Garden Haiku

My green thumb is sick

Garden frightens all children

Scary weeds grow there…

Classic Army M15A4 Sportline

Sometime late last year, I felt like reconnecting with my childhood days of playing soldier with “airsoft” bb firearms. Growing up in the age of Rambo, the Terminator and John McLane, I remember a lot of summers re-enacting Hollywood scenarios in abandoned houses and trying not to get caught by the village security guards.

These days, airsoft is a pretty sophisticated “sport.” The weapons look like the real thing, modifications are aplenty, and hundreds of players converge every weekend for a few hours of make-believe. For my first gun, I settled on the Classic Army Ml 5A4 carbine courtesy of Hobby Depot. It’s a replica of the Colt M4 carbine that’s regular issue to US troops stationed in Afghanistan and Iraq, which itself is the shorter version of the venerable Ml 6/AR- 15 family of rifles.

As guns go, it’s a pretty sexy piece, lightweight, intuitive, and easily upgradeable, although in real life the M4 has some serious design limitations such as a propensity for jamming and fouling. As a toy, though, it has that “Hollywood mystique” that makes playing the game more fun.

Being a “Sportline” model, the M15A4 has a plastic body, internals, and stock (although the barrel is steel) in order to make it more affordable. It also came with a stock, generic battery, safety glasses, and sling. Out of the box, and coming from a newbie, I was pretty excited about it.

Classic Army made sure to make the M15A4 weigh as much as the real thing and it has a good balance between the pistol grip and the hand guard. Muzzle velocity is around 330 feet per second (good but not great), while accuracy is good out to a hundred feet. Since I wanted the “SWAT” look, I also bought an aftermarket rail system you can attach scopes and tactical lights to, an illuminated 24 reticle scope, and a folding fore grip. After a few games, I realized the whole thing had gotten too heavy to lug around, and the reticle sight, while accurate, took too long to use in a heated battle.

I then swapped out the scope for a simpler, 2x by 42 red/green dot sight and removed the fore grip. With a little work done on it by airsoft guru and gunsmith extraordinaire Stephen Domingo, the rate-of-fire was also improved to make it a “deadlier” starter gun. Apart from minor wear-and-tear like a worn-out gear and a broken fire selector (it won’t fire single shot anymore), the M15A4 was a fun piece of kit, It’s accurate, lightweight, fairly compact, and has helped me rack up more than a few kills with my buddies.…

Five Tips for the First Time College Student

As a staff member of a large, successful community college, particularly through my work in enrollment and assessment, I’ve seen it all. New and prospective college students can be prepared and ready for anything, or entirely unprepared with a ‘deer in the headlights’ glaze in their eyes. Starting college is like starting a new job, except a new job doesn’t (usually) demand that you fork over large sums of money, go into debt, and purchase almost all of your own office supplies, for starters.

I’ve written up five suggestions for the first time college student, the regular person trying to get their degree and get ahead in life, who only has so much time and money to work with, and doesn’t need any more stress in their life. Some of these suggestions may not apply to your specific case, or they may already be known to you, and if that’s so, then congratulations, you’re already ahead. For everyone else, in no particular order:

First: Apply online. I know that might sound like a simple and basic suggestion, but believe me, it’s an effective one. By submitting a carefully filled-out application for , through the college’s web site, you preemptively eliminate a whole swath of problems. Your online application is far less likely to be lost, misdirected, or damaged, and is already within the college’s computer database, whereas a paper application has to be put into the system, which takes time, especially during the crunch before a semester begins. If there are questions or problems, your online application can be called up easily and quickly, for referral or alteration.

Second: If you must take an assessment test to determine what classes you can enroll in, keep a few things in mind. For starters, you may have previous college credit or high SAT scores that get you out of assessment testing. Be sure to share that information, and relevant transcripts, with the college or assessor. If you must test, ask if a practice test or sample questions are available. Many colleges provide such things in online format, allowing you to study ahead of time and enter the testing situation with knowledge of what to expect. Finally, try not to take a placement or assessment test directly after leaving work, or directly before a meal. These are both high-stress times for your body and mind, and cause you to test at less than your full capability.

Third: If you are going to be making use of financial aid, apply early! This cannot be stressed enough. In my experience, far too many students, especially first-time students, have no idea how much financial aid they can receive, or how long it may take to receive said aid. Visit your college’s financial aid advisor, as they will be able to answer your questions and help you make the right choices for your goals. Just as with applying, see the financial aid advisor early! If you wait until the new semester is about to begin, it is very likely that you will not be able to get an appointment, as throngs of other students have already booked them well before you.

Fourth: Take courses that you can handle and are capable of. I will say this, despite working at a college myself: The final decision as to your courses should always rest with you and your personal goals, and no one else. If an advisor pushes you to take a class online, but you are not comfortable with computers or would rather have an in-classroom experience, don’t let the advisor goad you into it. Conversely, if you …

Faberge as Businessman: Quality, customer service, and branding gave Faberge his edge.

Peter Carl Faberge is best known for his exquisite Faberge eggs and other jewel-encrusted works of art that were functional, decorative, and all the rage in royal Russia. However, Faberge was not only jeweler to Russia’s aristocracy, he was also a keen international businessman who demanded perfection out of his employees and set high standards for customer service.

Faberge Quality

Faberge himself did not actually create any of the fabulous pieces he is famous for today. Rather, he employed workmasters – highly-skilled jewelers, goldsmiths, enamellers, and artisans who could stone into life-like animal figurines, set jewels into the stamens of “flowers,” cast silver into whimsical images, and otherwise turn metals and minerals into prized and highly collectible works of art that were given as gifts to members of society’s upper echelon.

Hundreds of craftsmen who were employed at Faberge’s workshops and were held to exacting standards that served to reinforce Faberge’s reputation as no ordinary jeweler. Surviving Faberge items attest to workmasters’ skill and design aesthetics: a vase carved from a single piece of topaz is a minimalist creation that belies its own striking uniqueness; a bison shaped from obsidian with its nose polished to simulate a moist sheen is evidence of knowledge in materials and how to manipulate them to achieve a desired effect.

Faberge’s Branding

Faberge supplemented his income from expensive baubles by producing sets of silver for the Imperial Court and other aristocratic tables in the West. This early form of branding ensured that the most desirable customers were confronted with Faberge’s name and work whenever they sat down to dine.

Faberge’s Customer Service

Faberge was in superlative demand all over Europe, and his ability to work with individual customers further strengthened his popularity. Creating pieces that bore family colors, crests, or other personalized symbols were incorporated into items purchased for the buyer himself or as gifts. In some cases, Faberge’s customers helped to design pieces made for them.

Faberge’s Trendiness

Faberge had several branches in Russia and one in London. Customers could browse jeweled wares or place special orders. Choosing the gift was part of the Faberge experience – with each item a uniquely handcrafted item and always following the current fashion trends, Faberge retail shops were a smorgasbord of glittering novelties for Europe’s rich and famous. In addition, Faberge always discontinued items that were outdated in order to ensure that high society always had the freshest designs to choose from.

Faberge’s Worldwide Notoriety

Faberge had customers from Eastern Europe, Western Europe, the United States, India, the Middle East, and beyond. Those who could pay could always find what they needed through one of Faberge’s branches or through the jeweler himself. Faberge items were highly collectible even in his day. While history readily connects him with the Russian royal family as their personal jeweler, in reality, Faberge was internationally renowned figure.

The business that Faberge ran was not only about creating beautiful objects out of luxurious materials. It was about creating a highly desired product that carried with it guarantees of quality and fashionableness. Faberge objects delighted, amazed, and above all, flew off the shelves. These items, always in good taste, always of superior make, and always with the customer in mind is what still makes these objects so collectible today.…

Typical Uses of Red Hat Linux in the Enterprise

Web Hosting

Red Hat Linux ships with Apache, the leading Web server on the Internet. According to a recent Netcraft study of more than five million systems, Apache and its derivatives command approximately 56 percent of the total Web server market. Apache allows for hosting multiple sites on a single machine using either a single IP address or many. Red Hat’s Web hosting solution includes a wide range of modules to enhance functionality, including interfaces to common SQL databases.

Designed to meet normal Web loads, the Red Hat Linux Web server is a widely used, highly reliable, open source Web hosting solution. Deploying a Web server with Red Hat Linux will provide excellent real-world performance with substantially less downtime.

As a Web server, Red Hat Linux is especially useful for medium-size businesses that need to provide access to information systems for both internal and external users. For internal staff members, the Apache server can be used to access, distribute, update, and maintain a wide range of enterprise-wide data.

For external business partners, Apache provides restricted access via user name and password. This ensures that only authorized users have access to sensitive corporate information, such as price quotations and accounting and ordering policies and procedures. For an even more secure solution, Red Hat’s Secure Web server provides SSL encryption plus other software components for additional functionality.

File and Print Server

Red Hat Linux ships with packages that provide Netware (IPX), Windows NT (SMB), and Unix (NFS) file and print services. Samba provides Microsoft (SMB-based) networking functionality to Linux and supplies the necessary services to transparently integrate Red Hat Linux-based file and print services into NT domain-based environments. Red Hat servers running Samba can also function as clients, capable of mounting exported NT file systems. Red Hat Linux servers running Samba appear to the client operating system indistinquishable from Microsoft Windows NT file and print servers.

Red Hat Linux file and print server solutions provide significant cost savings for users. For example, in a computing environment containing 100 systems, the total cost for a Windows NT implementation is $3,600 ($30 client license for each system, plus an approximately $600 server license fee). This compares with only $79 for Red Hat Linux (which is free if downloaded). The savings increase dramatically as a company scales its computing operations. Other advantages include a faster, more reliable system and the ability to access a single file space natively in today’s heterogeneous LANs.

Internet Service Provider

The Red Hat Linux ISP solution includes many of the standard services required by ISPs. These services include Web and FTP server capabilities, Sendmail, POP and IMAP servers for client email access, and standard DNS and Internet news servers. ISPs wishing to offer hosted e-commerce solutions to enterprise clients will find a rich commercial solution stack, including IBM WebSphere, IBM DB2, Oracle 8i, Informix, Ingres, and middleware solutions such as Allare’s Cold Fusion. These products are not included in Red Hat Linux.

The Red Hat Linux ISP solution allows loads to be distributed across multiple machines. This capability eliminates or reduces the single point of failure in a single, high-end server implementation and also simplifies maintenance.

Other advantages include a remote system management capability and a high level of security. The Red Hat Linux solution contains all of the security features of Unix, including user and group permission modes, shadowed passwords with available MD5 encryption, centralized system logging, fully-configurable network service access controls, pluggable authentication modules for custom authentication models, and protocol-level network firewalling.

In addition, third-party software is available to provide secure, encrypted communications. These software packages include Red …

Notebook PC Pros and Cons: Read Before You Spend Dollars

When Julia wants to buy something she always looks for pros and cons of the product. Are you Julia? Want to buy a Notebook PC and desperate to know its pros and cons? We wonder you are, and so here are some factual points we know, that could influence your buying and dropping decision. Notebook PC pros and cons..

Notebook Pros (first)

Notebook Computer is amazing mainly because of its small-sized looks. You can carry your interests anywhere. Any Software’s, games, movies, even the minute-to-minute details that when needed for rewind purposes, you can enjoy them and share with others.

You’re no longer tethered to your office desktops, or even to a power outlet. We couldn’t find a place where these Notebooks can’t go. Can you? So what basically does it means?

Simple, you can entertain your friends outside your apartment, do videos with girls on beach and enjoy life to its maximum. Feeling tired and exhausted, sick of your place, the home works not done, then pick your seat in the McDonalds and get the Notebook do your home work. Gone abroad and need some back pats? Share your memories while connected to the Internet and encourage yourself instantly.

It’s just not limited to them. You have got a friend, entertaining you 24 hours. Think about it, use it as you wish, it won’t say never to you, though your friend may. Take it to your bedroom, bathroom, even your kitchen while you cook, just pick the piece up and do what ever your imagination says to. Best of all, power cords and many of its kinds are problems no more. Start messaging, read online news while you sit on your couch.

Did you know, two desktops can never do the job your Notebook can do alone by itself. You know workers back in old days used to work at home and at office while using different computers. Now proud James takes his office work to his home and gets the boss patting him more than before. Want promotion ideas, you already got one.

Notebook Cons

There’s not much to argument on it, though as Century changes, technology changes. If you can buy a PC for half to $1000, you will buy a Notebook close to $1000. Many now are tagged for $600 (or more) for average users. It’s mainly because of its small-size and many can’t afford it. Computer parts and machinery can not be fitted elsewhere hence these same parts are slimmed down to a more compact size of a Notebook model.

Furthermore stretchy people have got little to benefit from it. The keyboards quite small and narrowed though they can adjust it to their desired positions. Gaming folks cherish big screens, they can’t get it. Others are used to the mouse tradition and won’t prefer anything else. With that being said there are alternatives and they may need to buy a separate mouse or a cord connected to the big screen.

Last of all you may stick to what you have. Any changes or video card upgrades simply don’t exist next to a Notebook. Reread Notebook pros and cons before you set out spending big. It’s not for everybody, you know.