Farmer's Market Photo Pictorial
From Flint to Maine photos from the best of this summer's farmer's markets. While I was traveling all around New England this summer for TravFan I stopped by a lot of markets, produce stands and road side yummies. We'll be doing a complete series of photo guides this fall.
Apple Sucks (and can suck it)
By: Gemma Porter
I come from a very tech based family, I was surrounded with computers and matrix printers and huge cell phones and the internet before most people knew what they were or could do. My dad watched proudly as I designed 3-D art on the computers, joined list serves and understood the power of the internet as early I could write the. Macs have been my choice for engaging interesting things for years.
However on a recent evening I was prompted to update my iPhone to iOS 6, after waiting a very long time for the download to complete the whole phone system crashed. No amount of button pressing would turn the phone back on until 10-15 minutes later when the diabolical phone finally allowed me to switch it on only to show it had to be connected to iTunes and recovered. Meaning I would have to loose all my work notes, personal photos and apps.
Four hours later the mostly complete phone finally was recovered but the fact that apple pushes updates knowing full well that the Internet is abounding with complaints of the same sort is unsavory at best and perhaps worse for them and the marginal revenue is that many costumers, I personally know decades long loyal apple fans, who are starting to give up on iEverything. The user interfaces are beginning to go from bad to f**king unbelievable and the devices come out in new versions so fast people ca not help but feel screwed over for buying one month too soon.
Apple, I am sad to say, can suck it and may not be sucking up my money anymore.
Candy for Back-To-School
By: Sally Farchild
School is back in and that means our summer diets of fresh berries and summer squash go the wayside of sugary treats and fall flavored candies. For the more discerning graduate student I've found Tobago mini wrapped bars in milk and dark chocolate. For the professor's Saturday mornings I've got chocolate pearls for making hot coco as the leafs turn ruby and rust.
I have shifted about the internet to find organic root beer candies for in-the-car treats that will not make a huge mess, which no one wants to clean up of course. Pumpkin Spice Malted Milk Balls are a very fun after school treat while homework gets finished. Plus mom and dad can stealthily kidnap a few as homework help tax.
Before the weather turns icy and cold there is still a bit of camping to be had, so break out the Chocolate Chocolate Chip Astronaut Ice Cream for backyard camping adventures. Maple Malted Milk Balls as a oh so sweet fall treat to munch while picking the most lushous apples and Vegan Organic Gummy Bears are easy to transport and won't get kid's hands too sticky.
Tobago Assorted Chocolate
"Solid milk chocolate squares (37% cocoa) with notes of vanilla and cacao, next to solid dark chocolate squares (60% cocoa) with more full-bodied and floral chocolate notes.
Also available in only milk or only dark chocolate."
Pumpkin Spice Malted Milk Balls
"This malt ball could be the best ever!! A malted milk ball that has that one of a kind taste of pumpkin pie. Oh so delicious."
Tasse de Chocolat
"This tube of dark chocolate pearls makes an intense chocolate drink to be enjoyed hot or cold."
Organic Gummy Bears (Vegan)
"All natural organic gummy bears! These vegan gummy bears are a real treat. Certified organic by CCOF.Great flavors such as cherry, strawberry, lemon, orange, grape, and grapefruit."
Organic Root Beer Drops
"Yummy Earth's Organic Roadside Rootbeer drops have a classic frosty mug taste that you remember from your first float."
Maple Malted Milk Balls
"Malted milk balls in a delicious and sweet maple flavor."
Chocolate Chocolate Chip Astronaut Ice Cream
"Real ice cream that never melts! This chocolate chocolate chip ice cream bar is freeze dried, crunchy, and never needs to go in the freezer. Similar to the freeze dried ice cream astronauts eat in space, these freeze dried ice cream bars are a real treat."
3D Printing: a change in the means of production?
By: Taliesin L.O.
The easy question: just what is it?
3D printing is the the common, journalist's name for a new technology that is technically known more accurately as “additivemanufacturing(AM).” That name may sound daunting, but with a moment's thought it becomes quite self explanatory. Most traditional manufacturing, known as subtractive manufacturing, is the process of taking a quantity of raw material and refining it into a final product. A clear example is sculpture, where an artist takes raw materials as a slab of stone and, removing pieces from it layer by layer, arrives at a desired product. It's subtractive because the final merchandise is created by diminishing the raw materials.
In contrast, additive manufacturing received that name for the simple reason that it is a method for fabrication by means of adding and combining layer-upon-layer of the material until enough has been accumulated that the final commodity has been completed. In short, traditional manufacturing is accomplished by means of subtracting layer after layer from the raw materials; 3D printing is accomplished by means of adding layer after layer of raw materials.
Generally additive manufacturing begins with a detailed computer rendering of the final product. This three dimensional model is then fed into a 3D printer which proceeds to combine layers of metal, plastic or another material that has been liquified, powdered or refined in sheets. From there it is just a matter of time until what started as a computer model is a physical object.
Originally the largest limit in this technology, which dates back over twenty five years, was that it could only print with a small number of relatively brittle materials. But as time progressed, and technology advanced, a new process emerged called selective laser sintering (SLS) which allowed for greater flexibility in manufacturing. Now there is a growing possibility that additive manufacturing will shortly reach common home use.
It should be noted, though, that this technology is over twenty five years old. It is by no means new, and will take quite some time before it becomes standard in any section of industry besides prototyping.
Today the most common method of AM is called fused deposition modeling, which is essentially melting the tip of a metal wire, depositing the molten metal on the product, waiting for it to dry, and adding another layer of melted wire. Layer after layer, liquid metal or plastic or other material is added. For industrial use 3D printing is still mainly used for prototyping. That means that it has been used for the last thirty years by people like car manufacturers to acquire fast, easy and cheap prototypes for new products. These are, however, still expensive on a consumer scale.
A traditional prototype, even of a simple soda can, may cost hundreds of thousands of dollars; a 3D printed one will cost considerably less, but will still cost thousands of dollars. One of the most expensive requirements for additive manufacturing is the energy usage of the 3D printers, which consume very considerable amounts. But now AM is becoming capable of utilizing more and more base materials at less and less cost. It's already being used to create consumer jewelry and the like, and could become the standard way of manufacturing simple household goods.
The big question: just how sustainable is it?
“3D printing by its very nature is sustainable, because it builds from nothing, layer-by-layer, to build an object — you have no waste,” says Cathy Lewis, vice president of global marketing for 3D Systems, which has been developing the technology for industry for many years and recently debuted its first 3D printer aimed at home consumers. There are a lot of hopes for additive manufacturing starting to bubble. Besides the reason mentioned by in the above quote, there's also the possibilities for such a multi-functioning factory. Normally it is required that countless machines are used to turn raw materials into a final product, but additive manufacturing could change that. One 3D printer can manufacture almost anything.
The possibility is that raw materials will be shipped from where they are mined or harvested and sent directly to whatever city with additive manufacture capabilities is in need of them. That is a great deal more sustainable than harvesting iron, shipping it to be refined into steel, and shipping that to different factories across the world only to have the final product be clunkilly shipped to stores.
One of the main changes that AM could make in the world is making localized industry feasible. Historically, to produce something on an industrial scale, a factory is needed, and factories are a massive investment. A massive investment that can only produce one good. That means that a town may have, for instance, a shoe factory and an iron refinery. Such a town would need to import almost everything it needs, even the materials to make those shoes. One 3D printer, however, can produce almost anything. Meaning, one town with one AM factory could, given the necessary materials, manufacture everything that it requires on an industrial scale.
Finally, there are new technologies being developed which will allow a 3D printer to function not off of plastic and metal, but off of more natural products such as corn and sugar beet. Additive Manufacturing may be done using raw carbon, a very sustainable substance. For all this utopian dreaming, there area draw backs. AM is still very inefficient on a consumer level, taking many magnitudes more energy to manufacture the same product as traditional industry.
Mechanical engineer Tim Gutowski, who heads MIT’s Environmentally Benign Manufacturing group, found in a 2009 study that laser direct metal deposition — a type of additive manufacturing where metal powder is deposited and fused together by a high-energy beam — uses hundreds of times the electricity, per kilogram of metal processed, as more traditional methods like casting or machining.
Do not, however, let that get anyone down. All that this means is that AM is still a ways away from saving the planet, but that does mean that it is somewhere and that it is coming. Given time, AM will almost assuredly become less energy wasting, and will become more and more pervasive in the industrial world.
Energy use aside, there is one other major concern for 3D printing, and that is if it is stolen by one of the greatest evils of our time: consumerism. After all, think of the useless, breakable plastic trinkets people will be able to print. It could be truly instant gratification for every whim. But maybe not. Maybe people will use it for more sustainable purposes, like making their own skateboards off of local corn synthetics instead of buying them from China. Another anti-consumerist use is repair. A simple example is the battery cover on the back of every remote control which everyone losses. Normally it is nearly impossible to replace, but could be easily printed. The list goes on. It will make repairing lost or broken electronic parts simple for anyone. That use extends all through the house and beyond for anything that needs to be repaired.
In short, given time, Additive Manufacturing (production by adding layers of material instead of removing them) could have four major uses compared with traditional manufacture:
Let The Sunshine In Part 5
This is an on going column for I Citizen on abuse and the process to heal for both Women and Men. 1 in 3 women will be abused in some form in their lifetime. Emotional abuse can be one of the hardest to heal from because it leaves no outwardly showing battle scares. These articles address the healing process and the signs and systems abusers use to control the abused.
The art of the abuser is to hide in plan sight, while everyone feels it is too impolite to intervene. We allow abusers to exist and thrive because of a social code of silence. The deafening quiet on this subject should chill us all to the bone. So many women are torn down, hurt and killed by abusers and yet still so little is done.
The Abused can not end the cycle without society’s help, it is not alone that victims face abuse; it is with the permission of those in places of power to keep vulnerable people safe. The issue of domestic violence is not an issue of gender, of class or of intelligence; it is a human issue. The right of all humans to enjoy safety and peace is being neglected.
Recent stories in the news, that torrid thing we call tabloid (gossip can be fun) reminded me of all the stories I have heard again and again. The abuser's very nature is to crush the opponent lest they not be the best, most loved and always right creature they know themselves to be. We can make all the excuses, all the forgiveness and all the blame throwing we want as a country but abuse will never go down in numbers until people shine the light onto the subject and into the eyes of the life long abusers who walk down the street everyday, going to and from the game of breaking other people.
People get embarrassed, ashamed and angry about abuse but so often those emotions are hurled at the abused. We should be embarrassed, when men tweet their true feelings on the value of women. We should all be ashamed to allow the plague of emotional and physical abuse to fester in our homes without even any real protection for those that get out. Everyone should be angry, every day that people in places of power think so little of abuse that they sit still while people die.
Find a local council woman's phone number and call, ask for support; for meaningful local discussions. Contact your Congress people, tell them if they don't vote on the right side that you will vote and it won't be on their side.
Our community is the single most powerful force to combat the disease, we cannot help the abused recover nor change abuser's patterns until there is local support, social understanding and federal action.
The world does change, slowly and painfully but it has to be asked when the change will come. How many people need to die or see their lives ruined? The path to humanity is the path to end domestic violence and as we become a more tolerate country we move towards a better day when excuses and PR can not hide the little monsters in suits.
Learning to trust your self worth
Start small, huge changes don't happen over night and they are rarely easy but time and energy spent on the right path yields wonderful results. Maybe the first leg of your journey to trusting yourself can be as small as trying things you were sure were out of your league, whether that be food, experiences or people. Be brave, even when you feel like a coward. If you want to start larger, and feel ready, try planning something that will shift your mindset in the right direction. What is something you feel deeply unsettled about doing for yourself?
Your opinion matters
As your self worth was being torn down so most likely was the idea that your opinions mattered to anyone. Guess what, they do. They matter a great deal to the most important person in your life, You.
Building up the trust you've either lost or never had takes time and the willingness of inter strength to spend years finding your own voice.
There are no right ways to approach rebuilding the human spirit but there are easy ways to start out simply and grow perspective over time.
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My experience is limited attending other Conferences. I've attended the San Francisco Writers Conference and SCBWI workshops. I cannot say they are lacking. Each has unique reasons to attend. Writers conferences provide networking opportunities to discover the many options available to writers today. We can expand our writing skills, network with other writers who have been through the process, receive encouragement and advice on works in progress and pursue and connect with editors, agents and publishers.
CCWC has always been 75-90 minute workshops to develop or hone skills and learn about the current marketplace. San Francisco offers more panels and shorter presentations with more presenters. This offers more opportunities to network with professionals agents and publishers. This year we have stepped up the opportunities with more editors and agents presenting this September than ever before. Yet we will maintain the longer workshop format by pros who are excellent presenters willing to share their expertise.
How can writers help get their work viewed by the best quality people at conferences?
Good question and exactly why I have contracted with 7 professional editors in a variety of genres who will not only do an in-depth manuscript review of the first 10 pages .... or any 10 pages, but will return the critique before the conference with the anticipation of 15-minutes scheduled at the conference to discuss the manuscript critique and/or the modifications made as suggested by the editor. Just as the overall conference fees are under $200, the manuscript critique and face time is only $59.
Everyone has dreamt of writing the Great American Novel. Hanging out with writers and learning how writers complete their process is so interesting to readers and aspiring writers. Readers will receive the insights about the process and the business of publication today...which is evolving as fast as we speak.
Tell us some of your personal favorite authors, both ones that have attended and ones you just enjoy reading.
Every year I fall crazy in love with reading our keynote's works, but let me mention just a few. My first CCWC introduced me to Victoria Zackheim, who is a novelist, playwright, screenwriters, and now a very good friend, mentor and amazing woman. She presented the anthology she edited, THE OTHER WOMAN. Victoria takes a concept and has notable authors and famous people write their personal essay. She is creative, inspiring, and fun to read. Nathan Bransford was my first keynote. He was a sought after agent when he presented and provided us with a preview of what was to happen in publication - chaos with abounding opportunities for the flexible writer, agent and ePublisher. And although he changed positions, his website still has some of the best how-to's for writers looking for an agent or publisher. Next on my keynote list was Jonathan Maberry. I had never read a zombie book or wanted to. Nor was I big on thrillers, but Jonathan has chilled and thrilled me. The Joe Ledger Series and his YA series starting with ROT AND RUIN are wonderful reads that we'll see in movies one of these days. Jonathan has become a good friend because he is willing to share his talent...and himself. Next keynote was Jack Grapes, who is an icon in the poetry world. He also developed a system of writing both poetry and fiction METHOD WRITING, which he shares with students and celebrities wanting to write and based in Hollywood/West Los Angeles area. He is an incredible teacher and our attendees flocked to his workshops after hearing his keynote. This year Rebecca Rasmussen has captured my heart and interest. I believe THE BIRD SISTERS will be a GREAT AMERICAN NOVEL. It is a beautiful story written with all the best elements to take you away to middle America to meet these wonderful characters. We should all be so lucky to write like Rebecca - and we can. She instructs at UCLA.
Two programs that are unique for CCWC are our PG&E Teen Writers Program and our Chevron Teachable Moments In-Service for Teachers. With the support of PG&E we have 25+ scholarships for middle and high school students to attend. I select 2 presenter to design an exclusive workshops for the teens. This year YA author Shannon Messenger and nonfiction author Katya Cengel and Agent Gordon Warnock will present to the teens. It has been so successful I created the same model for the teens teachers to enjoy the conference and adapt new writing tools for the 2013 curriculum. Once the teens or teachers glean from their two workshops, they also select 2 more workshops in the genre of their choice. Teachers can also earn credits for their attendance.
I'll stop there, but could go on and on with authors I have enjoyed to read and respect and value their presentation skills and willingness to share their expertise.
What are your thoughts on social media for authors just starting out?
An absolute must today for authors. When I was first seeking presenters I learned quickly websites were static and Facebook would get me directly to the industry people I wanted to invite. But for those breaking in, reading several blogs by authors and those writing tips on writing will be great research. And if you are just starting then read blogs by our 2012 Success Story, Anne R. Allen. She not only has the first hand experience to demonstrate how a blog can help your writing career, but her insights are practical and her goal is to keep you writing your manuscript more than your social media outreach. But even Anne confirms writers need to write so blogging will fill that need and build a name for new authors at the same time.
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Streaming Film Review
The Mommy Hood