Monday, 23 June 2008

Jim Bell's U3A Digital Photography Course.

This is the blog that I've set up for the U3A Digital Photography Course that I'm running, at Belmont North Community Centre, on a Wednesday.
Jim Bell's U3A Digital Photography Course.

Friday, 20 June 2008

Fuel-saver technology Premo-drive run over by budget | The Australian

Come on Kevin, we don't need this sort of rubbish from Labor.

.. I wonder if it's possible for us "Normal" people to help with this sort of thing ... 5 million Aussies .. one dollar a head through say .. PayPal or some other sort of donation system. I'd possibly even put in more than a dollar. Later on the company could give a little back some way possibly as a discount on a share purchase .. What do you think?
"PERMO-DRIVE is the sort of company that Kevin Rudd would like to believe is Australia's future - not only is it a manufacturer, it has developed innovative technology to slash fuel consumption."

"Its hybrid drive system for trucks promises to deliver fuel savings of up to 25 per cent, many times greater than the efficiency offered by the Toyota Camry the federal Government is backing with a $35 million cash grant.
From its base in Ballina, on the NSW north coast, the company secured the interest of the US army, which has subjected the technology to years of rigorous testing.
The company is ready to roll out 20 demonstrator models, and Australia's biggest trucking companies are keen to try them.
But all that promise now appears to be in doubt.
Permo-Drive chairman Colin Henson has written to the company's 1900 shareholders, telling them the company must be put into liquidation - and the Rudd Government's first budget was blamed.

The company was counting on a $5 million grant from the small business development program Commercial Ready, which was axed in the budget.
The company's executives were furious. "It seems very unfair of the federal Government to take away that opportunity from an Aussie company like Permo-Drive, yet, at the same time, announce a $35million fuel-saving hybrid subsidy to Toyota, a wealthy multinational company," Mr Henson wrote.
He told The Australian yesterday that while Toyota president Katuaki Watanabe had appeared nonplussed when asked what his company would do with the $35million federal grant, announced this month and immediately matched by a similar offer from the Victorian Government, Permo-Drive knew exactly what it would do with the $5million.
"That is the betterment of a technology that has been developed and proven in Australia," Mr Henson said.
He said a British venture capital company was prepared to put in $7.5million on condition that the business was successful in its application for the CR grant.
"A number of our potential investors were attracted by the fact that the company had the opportunity to claim under the Commercial Ready grants," Mr Henson said. "When they were scrapped, those investors evaporated."
Permo-Drive's technology is based on a hydraulic brake, which stores the energy released when a truck is slowing down by compressing gas in cylinders.
The truck then uses the power from the release of the gas when it is accelerating. It is ideal for rubbish trucks, postal vans and commercial delivery vans, which stop frequently.
Chief engineer Chris Marshall said the system was much lighter and cheaper than battery-based hybrid systems.

Permo-Drive was preparing its application for a Commercial Ready grant when the $700mil-lion-a-year program was axed in the budget. The program fell victim to the Government's razor gang after criticism from the Productivity Commission that it gave taxpayer funds to companies that would have gotten their technology to market anyway.
In its past 10 months, the program helped 125 small businesses get new products into production, ranging from a new design for orchestral harps to a mining drill.
Grants followed an appraisal by Ausindustry, provided there was matching funding from private sources. The Productivity Commission suggested the program would be improved if it were based on loans, not grants.
Coalition industry spokesman Eric Abetz said yesterday that while the Commercial Ready scheme could have been improved, it filled an important gap in small business funding.
"I would like to suggest to (Industry Minister) Kim Carr that he support Permo-Drive, but if he did that, he would be confronted with hundreds of similar requests from all around Australia," Senator Abetz said. "I have been inundated with tales of woe and concern from small businesses."
Senator Carr said the decision to chop the scheme had not been taken lightly.
"Anyone who says the budget wasn't tough needs only look to decisions like this," he said. "These disciplined savings measures will help to put downward pressure on inflation because we understand that inflation is real and it hurts working families."
He said almost three-quarters of the savings from the scheme had been earmarked for the Government's clean energy plan." - Study: Big, Carb-Heavy Breakfast Key to Weight Loss - Health News | Current Health News | Medical News,2933,368462,00.html
Eating a big breakfast, heavy in carbs, is the key to keeping slim, according to new research.

A new study found that women who eat half of their daily calories first thing in the morning lose more weight in the long term than those who start the day with a small breakfast.

And they are also less likely to pile the pounds back on.

Dr. Daniela Jakubowicz, from the Hospital de Clinicas in Caracas, Venezuela, who led the study, said: "A very low carbohydrate diet exacerbates the craving for carbohydrates and slows metabolism. After a short period of weight loss, there is a quick return to obesity."

It is thought that eating a meal packed with protein and carbohydrates helps cut cravings for sweet or starchy foods, and boosts the metabolism.

Scientists compared the "big breakfast" diet with a strict low-carb weight-loss regime.

Jakubowicz and a team at Virginia Commonwealth University studied 94 obese, inactive women and found that low-carb dieters initially lost more weight.

The strict low-carb diet caused an average weight loss of 28 pounds; the big-breakfast version cut 23 pounds.

However, after eight months, the strict dieters had regained 18 pounds. The big-breakfast eaters continued to drop weight, losing another 16.5 pounds.

Those on the big breakfast diet lost more than 21 percent of their body weight, compared with just 4.5 percent for the low-carb group.

Women who ate a big breakfast reported feeling less hungry, especially before lunch and had fewer cravings for carbs than the other women did. The big breakfast dieters ate an average of 1,240 calories per day, 610 of which were consumed at breakfast. The low-carb dieters ate just 1,085 calories per day.

The findings will be presented this week at ENDO 08, the 90th annual meeting of The Endocrine Society in San Francisco. - Study: Big, Carb-Heavy Breakfast Key to Weight Loss - Health News | Current Health News | Medical News

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Thursday, 12 June 2008

Aussie Bitten “Down Under” by Poisonous Snake, Survives

Posted by McCullough in General

Rum the remedy for snake bite on penis |

"A MAN bitten on the penis by a deadly snake has told how he used a cold rum can to soothe the pain while he rang his mother to say a final goodbye. “I thought I was gone,” Daryl Zutt said of his now notorious encounter with a brown snake during a roadside toilet stop in remote far north Queensland, The Cairns Post reported. “I thought, ‘Maybe, this is it. Maybe, I’m gonna cark it’.”

The Cairns Post revealed details of the bizarre encounter two weeks ago but the identity of the victim remained unknown until Mr Zutt came forward to tell how the brown snake took a near-fatal swipe as he relieved himself. “I squatted down … I reckon I must’ve nearly sat on his head,” he said. “As soon as I felt it, I yelled.

“It really hurt. “When it happened, I knew in the back of my mind it was a snake. “I seen him coming out from between my legs.” He said he tried to remain calm as he inspected the damage. “He got me about halfway down,” he said. “I saw fang marks and a bit of blood come out.” Mr Zutt’s friend drove him to a medical centre before he was moved to a hospital for further tests which showed he was not envenomated. “They’ve been saying things like ‘It was a trouser snake fight’ and ‘He (the snake) saw the competition and got scared’,” Mr Zutt said. “Once they knew I was right, the jokes came out.”

And the joke: So the doctor tells his friend, “If you want to save his life, you need to suck the poison out.” His friend nods, and hangs up the cell phone. Aussie asks his friend “What did the doctor say?” Friend looks at him ominously and says, “Your going to die mate”.

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Monday, 9 June 2008

Gasoline thieves adopt a new drill

Heidi Perkins filled up her truck with gas for $90, then a thief used a drill to drive off with everything in her tank.

Heidi Perkins spent $90 filling up her 2002 Dodge pickup the Friday before Mother's Day and used a quarter of the tank over the weekend. So she was mystified Monday morning when the gas gauge was below "E" as she drove her daughter to school.

She pulled into the closest gas station and began to refill.

"The gas was pouring out of the gas tank almost as fast as it was going in," said Perkins, who lives in Waxahachie. "There was a hole in it. And I started to wonder if my gas was stolen."

She was right: Someone drilled a hole in the truck's plastic gas tank and drained it.

With gas prices at record highs and service stations thwarting drive-offs with pay-before-you-pump policies, gas thieves are becoming more creative.

Police and Tarrant County auto-shop owners have reported gas tanks being punctured or fuel lines being cut on parked cars, trucks and SUVs. While most mechanics say they've seen only a couple of victims each, they fear the crime will grow with gas prices.

Read the rest at
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Saturday, 7 June 2008

Flock Browser Test

This is written and posted from inside Flock
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