Get a Check Up on Your Car Before a Big Trip

With the Holidays in full swing, many a family is planning a trip to see relatives and friends. Often the car is the transportation of choice. The question is, is your car in shape for the long trip? Getting your car checked out before a long trip is a really smart thing to do. You can avoid any potential safety issues and ensure your family is safe and secure in the car, and you can certainly avoid costly and untimely roadside breakdowns. Take your car to the local auto repair shop, and they will give your car a good going over.

Things to Look For

There are a lot of things the auto technician will look for when inspecting your car for a long trip. Some of them are:

  • Proper Air Pressure in your Tires- Tire pressure makes for better handling and better fuel economy. If you haven’t rotated your tires in 10,000 miles, do so.
  • Tread on the Tires is OK- You need good traction if you encounter winter weather or rain. This check also assures you won’t have a flat!
  • Windshield Wiper Fluid is to the Top of the Reservoir- Winter is here. Being able to keep your windshield clean and clear of ice or snow is a must. Sometimes you need a lot of fluid to keep your windshield clean in winter weather storms. Fill to the top!
  • Oil Level is Good and Quality of Oil is Good- This is very important. A car runs a lot more smoothly and efficiently (less cost) with clean oil.
  • Transmission Fluid Level and Quality is Good- This is very important. If your Transmission fluid is old or low, it can harm the transmission so be sure it is at the full level and clean.
  • Brake Fluid Level is OK- Low brake fluid can cause brakes to malfunction.
  • Radiator is Clear of Debris- A radiator needs to breath to keep your engine cool.
  • No Loose Fittings or Items in the Engine Area and Under the Car- Don’t leave any key fittings on the road! Check for any leaks.
  • Brakes are Working OK- This is a big safety check. Make sure the brake pads are healthy and have plenty of life left in them.

Be sure you get a Free 174 Point Car Inspection while you have the car at the auto repair shop and get set up on a preventative maintenance plan for the long term health of your car. It pays for itself! Have a safe trip!

Time Travel – A Possibility or Just the Stuff of Science Fiction?

It’s been written about in hundreds of books, the subject of fantasy for everyone at one time or another, and the government has actually devoted research at one time or another on the subject. If you do a search on the Internet for time travel you will find millions of entries on it, and hundreds of websites fully devoted to talking about it. Wouldn’t it be cool if you could travel back in time? You could correct mistakes you’ve made in your life, study any period of time that interests you, not to mention build a financial empire on your foreknowledge of events. Beginning with H.G. Wells’ The Time Machine, the concept of time travel has been one of the main staples of science fiction. Some of my favorite reads are David Gerrold’s The Man Who Folded Himself and The Light of Other Days by Stephen Baxter and Arthur C. Clarke.

So is it really possible to travel in time?

First of all we are all already time travelers in the sense that time moves forward, and at the same apparent rate of speed, for all of us. There seem to be no obstacles in physics to accelerating the forward momentum of time in one way or another. Cryogenics is a concept much written about as one method of “forward” time travel; lowering the body temperature to a little above absolute zero to nearly stop the metabolism as a way to sleep away millennia. The practical hurdles to this put any possibility of this far into the future. Although simpler organisms have been successfully frozen and returned, the human body is too complex to yet survive the process because of water crystallization and other factors. Another method of accelerating time is time differentials due to the relativistic effects of high velocity.

According to Einstein’s Theory of Relativity, as an object approaches the speed of light one of the effects is time dilation. As a relativistic object’s speed increases the passage of time slows for it in relation to a non-moving object. Take for example a spacecraft traveling at 10% of the speed of light, or 18,628 miles per second. If this imaginary spacecraft maintained this speed consistently for 24 hours (according to our clocks back home), then at the end of that 24 hours only about 23 hours, 53 minutes would have passed onboard the spacecraft. Much higher speeds to within a fraction of a percent of the speed of light have to be achieved to get a really noticeable effect. Take that same spacecraft and accelerate it to .999999 light speed (or to 186,281.81 miles every second) and something really bizarre happens, achieving something more like time travel. If you take that spacecraft out on a joyride at that speed for 24 hours of your traveler’s time and return home, you will find that almost two years have past on Earth.

In actuality, this has been observed in experiments done when atomic clocks were sent on jetliners to observe the effects of time dilation. The difference was observed as predicted, helping to support Einstein’s theories. Naturally the difference was small, measured in nanoseconds. Unfortunately for any aspiring time travelers, the kind of speeds needed for relativistic effects are still well outside our technology. The fastest spacecraft yet launched were the Helios spacecraft sent to study the sun in the 70s. They achieved speeds of about 158,000mph, or about 44 miles per second; this is about .02% light-speed, still not close to relativistic speeds.

And what about the possibility of travel back in time?

This makes great material for science fiction, but the data here doesn’t seem promising. Physicists have been able to envision certain circumstances under which time travel MAY be allowable under the laws of physics, but the energy levels and exotic matter requirements seem to be well beyond anything we are likely to achieve anytime soon. Some have suggested that wormholes may be bridges to other universes, distant parts of this universe, or other times. Wormholes remain a theoretical concept, neither proven nor dis-proven to exist. It seems that for all practical purposes the universe has (at least temporarily) denied us the opportunity to revisit our past directly. So let us turn to a discussion of what the possibilities would be if time travel did exist.

First of all we must look at the fact put forward by modern physics that space and time are related aspects of the topology of our universe. In other words, our universe consists of the three observable dimensions of space and one of time. Putting together a theory that explains the existence of our universe required combining time and space into one continuum. Assuming this to be true, it follows that there should be a parallel measurement in space equivalent to measurements in time. It may seem nonsensical to talk of measuring space in seconds or time in miles, but the two are tied together through the speed of light. Therefore it follows that to convert one second of time into distance, we simply look at how far light travels in one second. That would be approximately 186,282 miles or three quarters the distance to the moon. This means that traveling one second back in time would be equivalent to traveling nearly the distance to the moon. Then there is the fact that a change in temporal position would mean having to adjust for the motion of the earth, sun and galaxy as they rotate and revolve. A lot harder than it looked, huh? Ok, let’s pretend we overcome this obstacle and achieve real, meaningful time travel. Could you go back in time and kill your grandfather early in his life, assuring that you will never be born? Time travel is full of paradoxes such as this. For the most part this can be overcome by incorporating quantum mechanics into the concept of time travel, and branching realities.

Quantum mechanics is a field of theory which developed in the first quarter of the twentieth century through the work of Niels Bohr, Pauli, Planck, Heisenberg, and Schrodinger. It’s basic tenets are that at a fundamental level matter exists as a cloud of uncertainty and probability. Heisenberg’s Uncertainty Principle states that one cannot measure both the position and momentum of an elementary particle because the act of observation changes the outcome. In this branch of physics cause and effect is said to break down and one can only state the probability of something being true. The most famous example of what quantum mechanics means in the real world was given as a thought experiment by Erwin Schrodinger and is known as Schrodinger’s Cat. Here it follows:

A cat is placed in a sealed box. Attached to the box is an apparatus containing a radioactive nucleus and a canister of poison gas. This apparatus is separated from the cat in such a way that the cat can in no way interfere with it. The experiment is set up so that there is exactly a 50% chance of the nucleus decaying in one hour. If the nucleus decays, it will emit a particle that triggers the apparatus, which opens the canister and kills the cat. If the nucleus does not decay, then the cat remains alive. According to quantum mechanics the unobserved nucleus is described as a superposition (meaning it exists partly as each simultaneously) of “decayed nucleus” and “undecayed nucleus”. However, when the box is opened the experimenter sees only a “decayed nucleus/dead cat” or an “undecayed nucleus/living cat”.

The paradox of this experiment is that the cat is said to be both dead and alive until someone opens the box. (*No cats or animals of any kind were harmed in the writing of this article). This paradox can be resolved if we say that instead of both being true in one reality, that reality actually branches into two. In one universe the cat is alive and in the parallel universe it is dead. In this way our universe is constantly splitting into alternate universes in which every possibility is encompassed. This also solves the paradoxes of time travel. When our time traveler returns and makes changes in the past he would be creating an alternate universe without destroying the other. In this way, as he or she continued to make changes, our time traveler would never be able to return to their original timeline, although he could create one similar to it with the right changes. All of the possibilities and repercussions of a scenario such as this are spectacularly presented in the science fiction novel The Man Who Folded Himself, by David Gerrold.

In summary, time travel is a highly entertaining concept for science fiction, and actually holds some plausibility in certain concepts of modern physics. But as a practical application, it is not likely to become a part of our lives anytime soon. Of course, not being a time traveler myself, I cannot speak with certainty.

Time will tell.

Great Jewelry Tips That You Should Check Out

If you do not have enough money to buy jewelry, you can easily create your own. Earrings and necklaces are very easy to do: you can buy lovely beads for very cheap, or even make your own. Practice until you get it right, and people will not be able to tell the difference.

TIP! Lamp worked beads are a popular element in modern jewelry. Because many artisans hand-make each lamp worked bead, they can be unique and customized to suit your taste precisely.

What is jewelry for you? Can you tell the difference among costume jewelry and more valuable pieces? These tips are the first step in understanding the world of jewelry. Read these tips to find out a few simple things you will want to know when exploring the world of jewelry.

Give the gift that allows you to keep on giving. Add-a-pearl and add-a-bead type necklaces and bracelets along with charm bracelets make gift-giving easy! Start your loved one off with the basic chain or bracelet necessary and perhaps a pearl, bead or charm to commemorate the occasion, and with every holiday, birthday or special event in the future, use those opportunities to add to it with additional charms and beads.

TIP! When making jewelry, beeswax is a wonderful product to use for taming frizzy twine. Just rub a little on to the twine and you will have a smooth look in no time.

Currently of time you may not be able to afford the exact wedding band you have always dreamed of. However, that does not mean that you cannot buy something that suits the budget now and replace it in later years. You can always purchase the ring for a future occasion, such as your anniversary. Some jewelers provide buy-back programs where your ring can be traded for a larger one.

To get cheaper rates on your jewelry-making supplies, try to take advantage of discounts and sales. Several chain hobby and craft stores sell basic supplies that you can use when making jewelry (such as thread, pliers, beads, etc), and these frequently can go on sale, sometimes up to 50% off. If you need to purchase items that are not sold in local stores, do research online before settling on a place to purchase from.

TIP! A busted clasp or tarnished chain does not necessarily spell the end of your favorite piece of jewelry. Look for ways to adapt pendants, beads, or accents into a new form.

When selecting your jewelry for the day, consider its purpose in relation to your outfit. You should consider if your jewelry will overtake your outfit. You want your jewelry to complement what you have on, not overpower it.

When shopping for jewelry for your wife or girlfriend, consider her lifestyle and hobbies. If she tends to dress conservatively and enjoys traditional and classic styles, opt for diamond studs, simple chains, or tennis bracelets. If she constantly changes up her look, consider jewelry with interchangeable pendants, stones, or beads.

TIP! When making or gifting jewelry, make each piece even more meaningful by selecting stones, beads, and colors that communicate different emotions. Green gems like jade and emeralds represent growth and vitality, which makes them ideal gifts for expectant mothers, newlyweds, or perhaps friends who are especially active in eco-friendly lifestyles and initiatives.

Before you select your newest addition to your jewelry collection, learn the latest styles that are trending. The one thing that makes a great purchase an outstanding one is getting a bargain on it.

To prevent waste from throwing away broken beaded necklaces or bracelets, simply rest ring the beads onto a thin coil of wire, ribbon or even dental floss. You can set the necklace on a table, knot the end of your selected string and then move the beads from the old necklace to the new one one at a time to keep the same pattern. When the transfer is complete, tie the ends together and you’ve got a new necklace.

TIP! Don’t be afraid to play with different textures in your jewelry designs. Incorporating different types of beads (crystal, pearl, seed beads, glass, plastic, etc) will add a degree of interest to any piece.

A quality jewelry piece can last for a lifetime. Do not rush yourself into purchasing something that is less than ideal. Take your time and find the one that is just right.

In fashion today, not everything has to be precisely matched. It’s a good idea to wear jewelry that coordinates or contrasts with your outfit. If you wear a string of yellow beads with a yellow blouse, the necklace gets lost. However, the same beads pop against the contrasting background of a white top.

You can make money from any gold bracelets and necklaces you have, without having to sell your entire pieces. Instead, you can just trim off some excess chain and sell it, and keep the important part to wear. If the chain is real gold, and there’s a lot of excess, you can make a couple hundred dollars without losing anything you need.

If you have the cash resources, consider buying findings, fasteners, chains, and beads in larger quantities; most jewelry and craft suppliers offer significant discounts on large orders to encourage quick inventory turnover. Your jewelry-making business will consume less cash, but only if you purchase large quantities of items that can be used in a variety of pieces and styles.

TIP! Native American jewelry has a rich history in American culture. The colorful beads and designs tell stories of generations past.

When photographing jewelry for online sale, you need to make the presentation of the piece as attractive as possible. Since your potential customer will not be able to examine the piece in person, your presentation is very important. Take pictures of jewelry in an environment that will put the focus on just the piece, not the background.

Jewelry is often very difficult to purchase for a friend or loved one because there are as many different styles and types of jewelry as there are people to wear it. Bracelets are a great solution for many and are available in a huge variety of styles made for the fanciest of occasions to casual every-day wear. Plain silver and gold bangles are a staple for most women, but charm or sliding-bead style bracelets offer the buyer and the wearer the ability to completely customize the bracelet, as well as give the presenter a whole host of additional gifts to give in the future with the purchase of more charms or beads.

TIP! Add extra depth and meaning to custom pieces by incorporating gemstones and beads that are associated with deeper meanings. To convey a sense of purity and peace, incorporate white stones like opals, pearls, diamonds, and colorless topaz as focal pieces.

To keep your necklaces tangle-free, look for pretty, embellished robe hooks. Try hanging the hooks on the wall in your bedroom or on the back of the door, then put all your necklaces on them in the fashion that works for you. This can make your bedroom look more stylish and help you select the best necklace for your outfit.

Some people have difficulty tolerating the feel of metal around sensitive parts of their bodies, such as their wrists or necks. This makes it difficult for them to wear necklaces, bracelets, or watches. However, a popular substitute is a carefully knitted or crocheted piece with beads, which can be just as beautiful, but is much more comfortable.

TIP! When making jewelry such as a bracelet, remember that beads can be expensive. A good way to find cheaper beads is to go to a thrift store and buy jewelry that is on sale and deconstruct it and use it in your design.

When buying jewelry, you should not buy something only because of the brand. You’ll probably pay too much since a jeweler will be aware that you are probably buying the name and not the piece. Besides, many “regular” people won’t even recognize the brand when you wear it. It is easy to find quality pieces from a variety of brands.

Pandora beads are a very popular trend at the moment, combining all the fascination of a traditional charm bracelet, with the ease of customization associated with glass beads. While brand name Pandora beads are comparatively expensive, a number of other companies are making compatible beads with more themes and colors, at a cheaper price.

As you just read, there are lots of helpful tips which can make it easier for you during your next jewelry shopping trip. If you know the value of jewelry and can identify a classy piece when you see it, you’ll always be able to get the best deal on the best jewelry. It doesn’t take long to educate yourself about jewelry. Soon you will be buying jewelry like a pro.