Saturday, September 23, 2006

Search Engine Optimization And Online Businesses

Advertising online is one of the most efficient methods of advertising. SEO experts are vital for online advertising. There are a multitude of search engine firms, each promising success. It is important to choose most well known with the best reputation.

Search Engine Optimization firms are companies responsible for online advertisements. Their priority is to help businesses find success, using well-written captions and other methods to capture people’s attention.

Usually, once an SEO firm optimizes a Web site, the upsurge in traffic may vary from moderate to substantial. If the site is properly designed, most traffic may translate into sales.

There are additional effective techniques for marketing businesses, but SEO is unique in that it offers a continual return on investment long after the initial financing. It is notable that some sites get 80-90 percent of their traffic after using the SEO firms’ placement services.

SEO firms can also assist companies in understanding the technical aspects of site rankings.

They are also adept at writing proper meta tags, keyword-rich text and attaining link popularity and prominence.

These firms also provide the necessary tools and SEO services for your site to rank well with search engine spiders and robots.

SEO firms offer services to ensure a Web site’s inclusion on search engines, and to boost the site’s rankings.

SEO services include complimentary search engine ranking reports, keyword research, log file analysis, SEO copywriting, Web site analysis, web usability, creation of meta tags, link building, consultation, SEO onsite training, and project evaluation.

Search engine ranking reports are used to gauge the site’s popularity in the searches for the Web site’s main keywords. The report would serve as the starting point before optimization.

SEO firms utilize keyword research by identifying potential keywords and competition in respect to such keywords. The three key factors for keyword research are: popularity, competition, and convertibility.

Another method is log file analysis to determine where traffic is currently coming from and how much traffic was received. Such analysis is the foundation prior to optimization.

SEO copywriting is another of their services, writing keyword- and context-rich text.

Another service of these firms is the complete Web site analysis. They will analyze the basic visitors’ usability of the site.

An additional service of SEO firms is the web usability. The firms take care to ensure that the Web site is easy to use and navigate.

Also the firms create meta tags that create a relevant and eye-catching title for the site to attract traffic.

The last method is the link-building campaign which consists of finding appropriate, quality sites for link exchanges.

These SEO firms are a great help for businesses. Such services help an online business gain customers around the world. Don't underestimate how much you might benefit from their services.

Barbara Davis frequently contributes to several online magazines, including and

The Title That Hooked The Most Readers

Online article titles have to do more than those in the print world. In a print magazine, you just need to catch the attention of the reader. The title doesn't really even have to tell the reader what the article is about, since the magazine it is in will be on a specific subject area. Readers know that if it is in a fishing magazine it about a fishing-related topic.

In an online article, on the other hand, the title has to tell the potential reader what the article is about. He may see nothing but the title in the search engine results, and if he doesn't know what it's about, he's likely to just click on the next link. Online article titles have to be found in the search engines as well, meaning they have to have keywords in them that people are looking for. Of course, just like print articles, they should also catch the reader's attention.

My Best Article Titles

Sometimes you can do all three of these things pretty well in one article. An example is my article titled "Cheap Homes In Nice Towns." You know what the article is about, it is okay as an attention grabber (not great), and "cheap homes" is a keyword that many people search for each month. At one of the article directories I have submitted it to, it has been read over 17,000 times - more than double the traffic of any of the other 550 articles I have there (many have been read only a couple hundred times).

However, in checking the number of times my various articles have been viewed at this directory, I have often been surprised - enough so to remind me that "rules" are only guidelines. For example, two of the most-read articles I have there are "Remove Permanent Marker From Carpet," and "How To Get Candle Wax Out Of Carpet" (about 6,000 times each).

These are not attention-grabbing titles, but they are also not topics covered well on the internet. Obviously there is something to be said for utilitarian articles with good keywords that are not too competitive. Add easy-to-compete-for keywords to the list of things to try for in an article title.

In the top five for visits are the article titles, "Really Cheap Plane Tickets," (6,400) and "Cheap International Plane Tickets" (10,050). A promise of a way to save money seems to be a good bet. My article "Worry - Five Ways To Eliminate It," has been viewed 3,300 times, but it is fairly new, making it the most views per month by far. I suppose worry is a common enough problem that people need a solution to.

Article titles that promise to help with a problem work, then. So do those that promise to teach the reader something new, and those that are directly targeting the keywords they are searching. What else can make for a good article title?

- Ask a question: "Do You Make This Writing Mistake?"

- Tell them they can do something: "You Can Write A Better Title Today"

- Promise some value: "Ten Ways You Can Make More Money"

- Use the words "how to": "How To Overcome Writer's Block"

- Involve them with a story: "You Quit Your Job - Now What?"

Watch the reports (at the article directories and on your web sites) and try to learn from them. Of course those statistics for "views" I mention above only tell me how many times people started to read my articles. Did they finish the articles? Did they then click through to my web sites? There is more to good online writing than good article titles.

Copyright Steve Gillman. He lost money on his websites until he discovered the power of articles. Six months later he was making a good living online. To learn how you can do the same, get your free online writing course at:

Viral Marketing Made Simple

A virus is ‘the causative agent of an infectious disease.’ That doesn’t sound good does it?

A cold virus spreads by self duplicating and spreading from person to person. A computer virus does the same thing. Your computer gets it, duplicates it and sends it on to the next computer. If bad things can spread virally, doesn’t it seem obvious that good things could be spread the same way?

That is the idea behind viral marketing anyways.

Rather than create something sneaky that implants and duplicates in secret, a viral marketer creates something good. So good that others like it well enough to want to spread it around. If it is good enough, the item will get duplicated and shared so many times that it literally spreads like a virus around the internet.

What are some examples of viral marketing tools?

Videos, Audios, Special Reports and Tip Sheets are the most common items created for a viral campaign.

Usually, when you create something to give away for free, you require someone to opt into your mailing list in order to get the freebie. If you’re trying to start a powerful marketing virus, you approach things differently. You send the viral tool out into the world without any strings attached and you invite others to do the same.

For example: You have a great shopping cart and site builder with website hosting services built in that you promote as an affiliate. You want to let as many people know about this service as possible, exposing everything to your affiliate link at the same time.

So you grab a free special report provided by the affiliate program owner. She has created the special report for just this purpose and has made it especially useful in that it compares and contrasts four popular shopping carts systems and highlights the important strengths of her own system. Her non-hype approach and common sense comparisons give the report heavy ‘pass it along value’.

You brand the report with your own affiliate link and then start to spread it around.

How do you spread it far and wide?

• First, send it out as a freebie to your mailing list.
• Post it as a free download on your website
• Post it as a free download on your blog.
• Link directly to it from your email signature.
• Link to it from your forum signatures
• Add a link to it from your related autoresponders.
• Mention it when you’re chatting and networking with others.

In every instance, you want to be sure to tell others that they should feel free to give the report away to others – as is – as much as they like, with your blessing.

If the viral tool is very special, you may want to use it to build up your mailing list. So instead of giving it away freely, you can ask people to opt into your mailing list to receive the item. Then follow the download up with a few short emails that refer to the special report and offer to answer any questions that they may have had about it.

Good affiliate programs will provide you with these kinds of marketing tools. A smart affiliate will take full advantage of the opportunity and do their part in spreading the marketing virus.

Michelle Waters helps Work At Home Moms take their home businesses ideas to reality with her ecommerce software and hosting services at She offers support and business advice for her clients at

Cingular Cell Phones Make Sense

Cingular Cell Phones Make Sense

The power of Cingular

Cingular Wireless is the largest digital voice and data network in United States, as they say in the commercial. Cingular is 60 percent owned by AT&T Inc. and 40 percent owned by BellSouth. The pro forma annual revenue crossed $32 billion in the year 2004. The company is headquartered in Atlanta, GA and if you need a new cell phone then they are definitely worth looking into.

The strong cell phone market

Cingular cell phones enjoy a strong market in the United States. This company has marketing tie-ups with major cell phone manufacturers and the widely used term "Cingular cell phones" does not actually mean that the company Cingular Wireless manufactures the cell phones; it only provides network services for the major brands of cell phones.

The latest phone technology

Every Cingular cell phone uses the latest phone technologies like TDMA network and GSM/GPRS. In 2003, Cingular introduced the Enhanced Data rate for GSM Evolution (EDGE) technology. Universal Mobile Telephone Service (UMTS) was also introduced. UMTS allows global roaming, and is the natural evolutionary path for the GSM/GPRS technology. All the Cingular cell phones display multimedia messaging, ringtones, and graphics capabilities.

The Cingular advantage

Cingular cell phones are gift wrapped with the Cingular advantage. The advantage boasts of the ALLOVER(tm) Network that connects more than 270 million people and the leading 100 markets in the United States. It has more than 54 million people in its largest mobile-to-mobile calling community. Customers who use the wireless plans, are allowed to keep their unused Anytime Minutes and carry it forward from month to month through the exclusive Rollover(r) offer.

Cingular goes international

International travelers can choose from their wide range of wireless handsets and devices, which feature wireless data roaming for laptops, PDAs, and other devices in over 80 countries. They can make calls to 170 countries over 6 continents. With GoPhone(r), customers can pay-as-they-go.


A comprehensive yet simple service summary is provided to enable customers know what exactly they are purchasing along with an estimated future bill. At every Cingular location, customers get prompt and efficient service. Cingular also offers a 30-day, no-questions-asked return policy on a nationwide basis.

Everyone benefits from Cingular

Due to the above unique advantages, Cingular cell phones are used by more than 1,200 federal, state, and local government agencies. They also serve more than 80 percent of Fortune 500 and 95 percent of Fortune 100 companies. The purchase of a Cingular cell phone guarantees superior product and service, along with values such as an unyielding integrity and a respect for all people irrespective of caste, creed, color, race, sex, age, or education.

Ian D. Major is the editor of

Please visit the site for the latest information on Cell Phones-Cell Phone Contracts-Cell Phone Accessories.

Search Engines Algorithms and PageRank - 2006

Some time ago, a search engine emerged with a new way of thinking. It was called Google and was started by two PhD students at Stanford University, Sergey Brin and Larry Page. They developed a new way of evaluating web pages called PageRank. The Internet has never been the same again.

PageRank is an important part of the Google algorithm, although not as important today as it was when it was introduced. PageRank relies heavily on incoming links and the the number of in-bound links to a page like a vote for a it's true value. The more incoming links a page has the better it is in the eyes of the Google Search Engine.

The value of each incoming link itself varies based on the PageRank of the page the link comes from. With PageRank, Google proved to be very good at serving up relevant web pages. And so Google became the most popular and successful search engine on the Internet. A position it still holds today.

Because PageRank measures off-page factors, Google felt it would be more difficult for webmasters to manipulate, and it was. But as the phrase goes, 'all good things must come to an end'.

And so webmasters have developed link manipulation schemes that influence the search engine results and make PageRank less effective. Many sites have focused on exchanging links, buying links and selling links on a massive scale. PageRank's reliance on links as a vote of confidence in a page's value has been undermined as webmasters create links purely to influence their Google ranking.

This manipulation of PageRank has in turn prompted Google to look for new factors upon which to rank webpages. The other major search engines (MSN and Yahoo) joined in with Google and each one of them began to develop their own new and more advanced webpage ranking algorithms. PageRank is now only one of more than 100 factors that Google looks at in ranking pages.

Search engines keep their ranking algorithms secret to prevent webmasters from cheating to get to the top of the search engine results. In the future, search engines may use hundreds of factors in ranking webpages. And these factors will continue to change as the search engines try to prevent webmasters from cheating.

Without direct access to search engine technology, much of the current SEO thinking about what works and what does not work for SEO is based on speculation. Webmasters and SEO professionals are hard at work testing the different approaches to search optimization in an effort to gain the upper hand and get their webpages to the top of the search engine results. Over time these experiments reveal the effective SEO factors for webmasters. But it's an on going process with no end in sight.

Please feel free to visit my website promotion blog for more information on PageRank and other SEO factors that work today

Robert McCulloch - Search engine optimization Professional in San Diego, CA. Website and Blog promotion for a fraction of what the other guys charge! and

Friday, September 22, 2006

Search Engine

What's New In Search Engines

• AskJeeves: It has made many significant improvements and is vastly improved over what it was several years ago. The search results page shows a number of very useful links to help expand or narrow the search. Their cached page carry a date and time that the page was cached—a very useful feature. One complaint about AskJeeves has been the large number of ads on their pages, but they have recently decreased the number.

• MSN: It shows you the time of caching (date only). A useful feature is free access to the Encarta encyclopedia. In common with some other engines, MSN has a Virtual Earth page for displaying maps. A “Site Builder” button allows the user to choose advanced features and have the command automatically added to the search box, which is good for people (like me!) who never can remember the syntax of many of these features.

• Yahoo!: Cache pages have a link to the Wayback Machine. Tabs on the search page allow the user to see many “verticals” or related searches. A limited amount of content from subscription databases is available in search results. Yahoo! now has a page to search blogs and also link to Flickr images. Yahoo! Mindset allows sliders to be set to control the importance of various characteristics of products when shopping. And results can now be sent to a cell phone, indicating Yahoo!’s recognition of the growing importance of mobile computing.

• Google: Stock prices appear, if they’re available on results pages for company searches. Google says it has a blog search capability, but they are really searching RSS feeds, not the entire content of blogs.


Jack Doren
I am working on
I usually publish articles regarding latest software tools of different categories which are mentioned in my weblog. I am also handling article marketing of this Blog.

The Simpsons (Season 1) DVD Review

Starting with the very first episode (airing December 17, 1989), The Simpsons (Season 1) DVD is packed with some of the best episodes in the show's history. All of these early episodes exhibit a bit of amateurish (by later Simpson standards) animation, seeing as how the popularity of the show had yet to land it the massive budgets of subsequent years. However, this does not take away from the show’s acerbic wit which is present and in full swing throughout all thirteen of the original episodes.

A few details do stand out. Homer’s voice is slightly different, and he isn’t as stupid as his character is later portrayed to be. But all the other Simpson family members are firmly established from the get-go. These initial episodes witness the appearance of such beloved supporting characters as Krusty the Clown, Ned Flanders, Itchy & Scratchy (although they’re just cartoons!), Monty Burns & sidekick Wayland Smithers, Patty & Selma, Martin Prince, Grandpa Simpson, Reverend Lovejoy, and a host of other highly regarded inhabitants of Springfield who have climbed their way into the hearts of America since the show’s debut.

As the longest running animated show in history, and the longest running prime-time show of any type, The Simpsons is an American treasure – a combination of humor, wit, and satire that examines not just the lives of its eccentric characters, but also the society, culture, and world in which we live. Fun for adults and children alike, The Simpsons is a cutting edge television comedy that, like Seinfeld, altered the television landscape in the 1990’s by dictating a new genre of TV fun that spawned network investment in new animated series such as King of the Hill, Futurama, and The Family Guy.

Like all new things which smash the paradigm of life, The Simpsons is unrivaled by its knockoffs, and the show doesn’t show signs of slowing down. If you haven’t yet visited Springfield, then I definitely recommend you pick up The Simpsons (Season 1) DVD to catch a glimpse for yourself. You have no idea what you’ve been missing…

The Simpsons DVD offers a number of hilarious episodes including the series premiere “Simpsons Roasting On An Open Fire” in which Homer’s attempt to work a second job in order to buy the family a great Christmas ends in utter failure. Desperate, he and Bart drive to a local dog-racing track where they place everything they have on a dog named “Santa’s Little Helper”. The dog is an utter failure, but the Simpson Christmas is salvaged when the family receives a special gift… Other notable episodes include “Bart The Genius” in which Bart switches his I.Q. test with that of Martin Prince, the class brain. As a result, he ends up being placed in an advanced school where he’s overwhelmed by expectations. And “Krusty Gets Busted” in which Bart’s hero, Krusty the Clown, is videotaped robbing the Kwik-E-Mart, prompting everyone but Bart to turn against him…

Below is a list of episodes included on The Simpsons (Season 1) DVD:

Episode 1 (Simpsons Roasting On An Open Fire) Air Date: 12-17-1989
Episode 2 (Bart The Genius) Air Date: 01-14-1990
Episode 3 (Homer’s Odyssey) Air Date: 01-21-1990
Episode 4 (There’s No Disgrace Like Home) Air Date: 01-28-1990
Episode 5 (Bart The General) Air Date: 02-04-1990
Episode 6 (Moaning Lisa) Air Date: 02-11-1990
Episode 7 (Call Of The Simpsons) Air Date: 02-18-1990
Episode 8 (The Telltale Head) Air Date: 02-25-1990
Episode 9 (Life On The Fast Lane) Air Date: 03-18-1990
Episode 10 (Homer’s Night Out) Air Date: 03-25-1990
Episode 11 (The Crepes Of Wrath) Air Date: 04-15-1990
Episode 12 (Krusty Gets Busted) Air Date: 04-29-1990
Episode 13 (Some Enchanted Evening) Air Date: 05-13-1990

Britt Gillette is author of The DVD Report, a blog where you can find where you can find more reviews of movies and TV series. Source:

CSI: Miami - Caine's Revenge

One of the most successful spin-off series in the history of television, CSI: Miami returns for a fifth series this fall. The show, reported by Reuters this year as the most watched television show in the world, returns this season with the continuation of an explosive story line that threatens to destroy Lieutenant Horatio Caine - and has already cost the life of someone close to him.

If you've fallen behind in the fourth season of CSI: Miami, here's a short primer to bring you up to date with the world of Horatio Caine and his crack team of crime scene investigators.

424: Rampage

After marrying CSI Delko's cancer stricken sister, Marisol, things are going swimmingly for Lieutenant Horatio Caine. While she may have little time left, the couple are enjoying the time they have together to the fullest. That is, until Horatio gets caught up in the criminal trial of a leader of the sinister crime gang Mala Noche.

When gang leader Raphael Sifuentes escapes from his trial Lt. Caine shoots his accomplice Jose Truillo dead, incurring the wrath of the Mala Noche. In retribution for the killing the gang put out a hit on Caine's new wife, Marisol. Both she and Delko are shot by a sniper from a high-rise building. While Delko's wound is not life threatening, Marisol is seriously injured.

While being rushed to hospital, Marisol's ambulance is ambushed by members of Mala Noche driving a black Lincoln. Caine leaps from the ambulance, firing on the car and taking out two hitmen while the driver, Memmo Fierro, escapes on foot. Meanwhile, Marisol's condition worsens due to the delay in receiving treatment, and she later passes away in hospital.

Caine and Delko succeed in tracking Marisol's shooter, Memmo Fierro, to the hotel at which he's staying. They drive him to an isolated spot in the Everglades, and Caine holds a gun to his head. Paralyzed with fear, Mierro reveals that it was Mala Noche member Antonio Riaz who ordered the hit on Marisol.

425: One of Our Own

The season finale begins with the continuation of the search for Antonio Riaz, the Mala Noche gang member who ordered the killing of Marisol Delko. The CSIs are called to a murder scene at which 5 members of Mala Noche were gunned down, and it seems that the scene was Riaz' safe house. While clearing the scene, police officer Aaron Jessop triggers a booby trap - a grenade hidden in a barbecue - and is killed. It appears that Riaz wished to leave a surprise for Lt. Caine.

The weapon used to kill the gang members, an AK47, is tracked to Rafik Ohmad, a weapons trader who did business with Mala Noche. Video evidence of a trade between Ohmad and Riaz reveals the real reason Marisol Delko was executed - she was a witness to the deal, and was killed to ensure her silence.

The CSIs also track down a phone number for Antonio Riaz, and while speaking to him he admits the real reason for the hit. He also boasts that there will soon be a "fireball over Miami" - leading Caine to surmise that Riaz purchased a surface-to-air weapon from Ohmad, and intends to destroy a commercial airliner.

Meanwhile, an FBI investigation into the CSI unit stifles the team's work. It seems that $12,000 cash went missing from evidence, and the feds were called in to investigate. It emerges that Delko's off-and-on love interest, Natalia Boa Vista, was an FBI mole sent to discredit the Miami Dade Police Department, but she insists that she didn't report the missing evidence. CSI Ryan Wolfe re-investigates the evidence and proves that the cash was stolen by someone outside of the department. In fact, the money was stolen by State Attorney Monica West in an attempt to discredit the department for her own political gain. Her fiancé, Treasury Agent Peter Elliot, draws a confession from West that leads to her arrest.

With time running out, Antonio Riaz is spotted by a police helicopter setting up a shot on an industrial estate near Miami Airport. Arriving at the scene just in time, Caine takes out Riaz with two shots to the leg as he pulls the trigger on the anti-aircraft weapon. Resisting the temptation to kill him, Caine fires a shot close to Riaz' head to scare him into submission.

The series concludes with the shocking news that Riaz cut a deal with the FBI, agreeing to inform on an Afghan terrorist sleeper cell operated by Rafik Ohmad in exchange for his extradition to Brazil, where he will most likely go free. On hearing the news, Horatio tells Delko to pack his bags: they are going to follow him...

What's Next?

We can expect an exciting start to the fifth season of CSI:Miami. On arriving in Rio de Janeiro Caine meets with his sister-in-law Yelina, who fled there with her husband Ray and their son, Ray Jr, in the final episode of the third season. However, all is not well. Raymond has gone missing, and Ray Jr, now 14, has been forced to infiltrate the Rio underworld in order to track him down. Little does he know that it may already be too late...

So, how will this story arc conclude? Who knows? CBS are keeping tight-lipped on new developments in the fifth season of CSI: Miami. The only way to find out, then, will be to tune in...

James Shenton is a much-published entertainment writer.

If you found this article informative you can find more of his work, from celebrity gossip to how to pitch your own TV show idea at , the best spot for TV show episode downloads on the web.

CSI Continues - The Difficult Seventh Season

Well, it's that time of year again. For the seventh year running, this fall season we'll see a new season of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation hit our screens.

Since its debut in the fall season of 2000, CSI: Crime Scene Investigation has been a major draw for the CBS Network. It became the most watched program on television in the 2002-2003 season, and has since remained in the top 3 most popular shows ever since. As of the sixth season each episode attracted an average of 30 million viewers, and 90 million people have seen the show in the past year.

The sixth season closed with a spectacular two-parter in which Detective Jim Brass was left fighting for life after a hostage negotiation went wrong. When murderer Willie Cutler took a woman hostage in a Vegas hotel room, Brass volunteered to negotiate. However, when things went awry Cutler fired three shots at Brass - and one of the shots breached his bulletproof vest, a bullet lodging in his heart.

After Brass was rushed to hospital in critical condition, CSI Gil Grissom was informed that Brass had nominated him as his medical proxy, which meant that Grissom had to decide whether to allow doctors to perform risky surgery to remove the bullet or - equally dangerous - leave the bullet where it was and risk a stroke. Grissom, believing that Brass would have wanted it, ordered the surgery.

Meanwhile, Brass' estranged daughter Ellie arrived, more interested in how much she'd get from her father's pension scheme than in his well being. Grissom tried to make Ellie understand how much Brass cares for her, but Ellie seemed unwilling to listen. By the time Brass regained consciousness she had left, but Brass' CSI family were still by his side.

The season closed on a surprising note with Grissom finally getting together with Sara Sidle - a story arc that has been several years in the making.

So what does the next season have in store for CSI fans? Well, while the show will no doubt continue with the format that has seen it become one of the most successful shows on TV the main story in the coming season must revolve around the CSIs relationships. With a new romance blooming between Grissom and Sidle it will be interesting to see how these two loners will adapt to the new situation.

On that count, at least, even the stars of the show don't know how it will turn out. Jorja Fox, the actor who plays Sidle, didn't know that she and Grissom were getting together until just a few days before filming, but she believes that this one is for keeps: "These two people, they have a lot in common. They're both really not great with people in many respects, and they're emotionally detached in many respects. If two people like that can kind of find each other, there's something really beautiful in that."

But it won't just be the relationship between Grissom and Sidle hogging the limelight. As we saw in the penultimate episode of season six Warwick Brown's marriage is on the rocks. After spotting his wife Tina with another man in the Lucky Dragon Casino Warwick confronted her, not realizing that she was planning a surprise party for Warwick's birthday. If Tina walks out on him, will Catherine offer Warwick a shoulder to cry on?

We'll have to wait and see... the story will unfold during the seventh season of CSI: Crime Scene Investigation on CBS this fall.

James Shenton is a New York-based entertainment writer. For more articles about CSI and other crime drama shows, visit , the Internet's hottest TV show downloads site.

Colorful Diamonds - Not For Individuals Looking for Champagne on a Beer Budget

Pink diamond engagement rings received a lot of attention recently when J-Lo received an exquisite 6 carat pink diamond in 2002 from Ben Affleck. Although the romance fizzled, the desire for pink diamonds did not.

Only a small number of pink diamonds are found each year, making them both extremely rare and highly sought after. Due to the supply/demand factor, they are often extremely costly and can easily run over $10,000 and typically much much more. Natural pink diamonds are light in color with just a hint of pink. Most of the world's pink diamonds are found in Australia.

An appealing alternative to pink diamonds are pink sapphires, which are less expensive ($500 and up), come in a wider variety of shapes and sizes, and have both light and deep shades of pink. Pink sapphires receive their color from small amounts of chromium. They are a hard gemstone and are therefore suitable for everyday wear. Pink tourmalines are another alternative to pink diamonds. For those who fall into the "want champagne on a beer budget category," you can always combine small pink diamonds with more affordable gemstones. Also, colorless diamonds can undergo treatment to develop a pink hue at a more affordable price.

One of the most famous canary yellow engagement rings was worn by Paris Hilton. The emerald cut ring weighed in at a hefty 24 carats. Regular couples today are also selecting canary yellow stones for their engagement rings. While diamonds with a slight yellowish hue are not considered desirable, those with a natural intense yellow color are actually becoming quite valuable. Only 1 in 1,000 diamonds are classified as canary yellow. The yellow color is believed to be due to the presence of nitrogen atoms when the diamond is formed. Diamonds can also undergo a process called irridiation or high pressure/high temperature treaments in order to give them a yellow hue.

Yellow diamonds are more expensive than their white counterparts, and the intensity of the color factors into this. If couples can't afford a natural yellow diamond as a center-stone, as with pink diamonds, there are always alternatives. Smaller yellow diamonds can be used as sidestones or natural yellow gemstones such as yellow sapphires or citrine can be used instead.

Julie Shields recently celebrated her first wedding anniversary and is sporting an ascher cut diamond ring. She and her husband put together: to help you select the perfect engagement ring.
You may distribute the article so long as you make mention of the ultimate engagement ring guide website.

How A Coarse Fishing Match Works

If you liked this article you may also like this one: Tips on Buying Fishing Boats

A coarse fishing match is a great way to pit your angling skills against others. Most private fishing lakes hold matches on a regular basis, or allow clubs to book one or more of their lakes to hold a club match. Competition is tough and anglers use every bit of experience and knowledge they have in order to catch the biggest fish.

Coarse fishing matches are usually organised by the water’s landowner, or an angling club, and they will often supply a steward or match organiser to ensure that rules are followed and all anglers are complying with restrictions on tackle and bait.

When a match is announced, there are usually more anglers who want to compete than there are spaces, so it’s important to keep a look out for matches in your area and to book quickly. There will usually be a closing time for applications and you will be informed of the rules that apply to that particular match.

Spaces, or Pegs, for each match are usually drawn at random before the match starts so that no angler can guarantee which peg they are going to get. Once allocated a peg, the angler must fish from that spot for the entire match. Most match rules state that if the angler has to leave his or her peg, they reel the line in so that they are not leaving a line unattended.

You must make sure that you have read the rules properly so that you only bring the tackle and bait that are allowed. Rules are strictly enforced and anyone found abusing them will be disqualified from the match.

Fish are weighed by a steward as they are caught and the steward also supervises the fish’s return to the lake. The angler who has caught the heaviest fish at the end of the allotted time period is the winner.

Coarse fishing matches are a great way to test your angling skills and to get to know other anglers. Give it a try at your local fishing water.

Dog Lane Fishery operates three coarse fishing lakes in the beautiful Warwickshire countryside. Visit our website now by clicking

Choosing Your HDTV Television

If you liked this article you may also want to check out this one: How To Get HDTV Programming For Your Home

To take full advantage of the great number of HDTV stations you can get with your satellite system, you will want a television with a breathtaking picture and mind blowing sound. When shopping for a television today, you have many more options than just a few years ago. From several hundred dollars, to a price similar to that of a new Corvette, you can choose the television to fit your budget and lifestyle.

If you want to watch satellite programming you will need a tv that is at least HDTV ready. Your satellite service provider will supply you with an HDTV tuner. Even if you will not be watching much HDTV programming, there is still a huge benefit to watching a digital television. All HDTV and HDTV ready tv's contain upconversion circuitry that cleans up the picture with even non HDTV signals.

If you watch a lot of movies or dvd's, you might want to purchase a widescreen television. A widescreen tv has a 16:9 aspect ratio screen, as opposed to the traditional television screen with a 4:3 aspect ratio. You can enjoy watching movies on a screen shaped like a movie theater screen, and view non digital programming in a side cropped view, or stretch the picture to varying degrees to fill the screen. All HDTV programming uses the 16:9 aspect ratio.

The least expensive option is the good old fashioned CRT (cathode ray tube) television. It has been around since 1927, and it is the least expensive option. It is built around a single picture tube, and provides excellent contrast and overall picture quality. A higher end picture tube television will actually give a smoother appearance of motion than a flat-panel tv. The primary drawbacks of tube tv's are their immense weight (compared to newer technology), and the considerable depth of the sets themselves, both severely limiting your installation choices. Also, the largest tube television available is 36", so if you need a larger picture, you might want to step up to flat-panel television.

LCD and Plasma screens are the two options available in flat-panel televisions. Both are incredibly thin and lightweight, and can be wall mounted if you choose to do so. An LCD (liquid crystal display) contains thousands of crystals sandwiched between two glass or plastic plates, which are acted upon by electrical current, creating images on the screen. A plasma screen consists of thousands of pixel cells filled with gases that excite phosphors, producing light, and thereby your picture.

The weight of an LCD and a plasma tv are comparable, with the LCD models being slightly lighter in the 40" range. As the screen size approaches 60", the weight of the LCD overtakes that of the plasma screen. The display panel tends to last longer with the LCD than with the plasma models. LCD televisions are not vulnerable to burn-in, also known as image shadowing or ghosting, like plasma screens. Burn-in is essentially burned, or worn out pixels in a plasma screen that have been damaged over a period of time and retain color information from static images like network logos, etc... Plasma tv's tend to have more accurate color reproduction than LCD models, and are currently less expensive than a comparable LCD. While the largest LCD tv at this writing is 65", that is likely to change quickly as the technology evolves with the latest innovations in the computer monitor industry. The largest plasma screen television currently produced is the Panasonic TH-103PZ600U103", which boasts a massive 103" screen, and is expected to carry a whopping retail price of about $70,000 when is hits US markets in late 2006.

Remember the old, bulky rear-projection televisions that were almost a yard deep and weighed nearly as much as a VW Bug? Todays digital big screen tv's take up much less space, and a 60" television can weigh under 100 lbs. Digital big screens are capable of brightness that is unmatched by the older CRT televisions, and do not suffer burn-in like the plasma tv's. These digital big-screens also contains a consumer replaceable lamp that restores picture quality to its original brilliance. Prices for these sets are very reasonable, usually one half to two thirds the price of a similar sized plasma or LCD television. One disadvantage of the big screen tv's is still size; even with technological advancements, these models take more room for installation than the flat screen televisions, and are not practical for wall mounting. The ideal viewing angle is only achieved straight on, and in a seated position.

For a true movie theater experience at home, a front projection tv may be a good choice. This is a two piece system consisting of a projector and a screen. They offer picture sizes up to 300", and do not include any type of tv tuner, instead displaying signals from a satellite receiver or cable box. The best viewing experience with a front projection setup requires a fairly dark environment, and is definitely not for everyone. However, for cinema lovers, there is no better way to bring your favorite film to life. Pricing for good projectors starts at just under $1000, and screen prices vary according to size, with most models falling somewhere between $300 and $1500.

Whether you watch mainly sporting events, movies, or dvd's, a modern television can give new life to your favorite programming. As technology advances at an astonishing pace, prices for larger and more sophisticated television sets continue to come down. If you do some shopping online and find that you can't quite afford the tv that you want, save money for five to six months; no matter how much or how little you are able to save, chances are you will be able to afford the set you want as prices come down. Just don't blow the money you have saved - you might need to build a new room to house the larger set you will be buying in two years.

Gregg Pennington owns the website, a site dedicated to satellite tv and television technology.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

Box Office Flops - More Than Meets the Eye?

There's something oddly satisfying about seeing a big-budget movie flop. Whenever we hear about these ambitious, special effects-laden extravaganzas going down in flames we get an odd feeling of schadenfreude.

But why is this? Does it stem from the fact that we feel manipulated, almost exploited, by the movie industry? Perhaps. After all, movie studios make a lot of coin from tweaking our emotions, be it through adrenaline-filled action films or mawkishly tear-jerking weepies.

Perhaps the best reason for our guilty pleasure at seeing a big-budget movie flop is the fact that we feel like we won a battle. We caught Hollywood trying to pull a fast one by releasing a bad movie and trying to hype it anyway -- and we weren't fooled. Gotcha. Better luck next time.

That's all well and good, but there have been many excellent movies throughout the years that, for whatever reason, failed to make it big at the box office. Hey, just because a movie didn't make a lot of money on its release doesn't make it bad -- after all, Citizen Kane barely made enough to cover the cost of a wooden sled on its original release. It wasn't until its re-release and television syndication that it became perhaps the most critically acclaimed movie of all time.

So, here's a look at two movies that didn't live up to expectations on their release, but later went on to disprove the critics:

Fight Club

Despite eventually becoming an enormous cult hit, Fight Club performed poorly on its release. With a budget of $63 million it took just $37 million at the US box office. On its release the movie drew mixed critical reactions, partly due to its violent nature. One high profile critic described it as "a film without a single redeeming quality, which may have to find its audience in Hell", and the flop cost the Entertainment Chief of 20th Century Fox his job.

Despite a tepid reception, Fight Club went on to turn a small profit at the global box office before exploding in popularity in the DVD market, becoming one of the best-loved films of the 90s. Today you'd be hard pressed to find a young man's DVD collection that didn't boast a Fight Club DVD.

Shawshank Redemption

One of the most well known box office flops of recent years, The Shawshank Redemption, based on a Steven King novella, came up against the might of Forrest Gump at the box office. Audiences preferred Hanks' feel good vehicle over this depressing prison drama and, although Shawshank garnered 7 Oscar nominations, the box office take was pathetic.

This all changed once the movie was released on video. Bolstered by the Oscar endorsements Shawshank became the most rented video of 1995, going on to become our 2nd favorite movie of all time according to an Internet Movie Database poll.

The moral of the story, it seems, is that you should probably think twice before dismissing a movie based on its box office success. Movies are always at their most enjoyable when seen on the big screen, so you shouldn't miss out on the chance to see them as they were meant to be seen simply because the audiences can't tell a Hollywood gem from fools gold. After all, these are the same people who made Ernest Goes to Jail the number one movie in its opening week. Would you trust them?

>From box office flops to blockbuster films, James Shenton is a movie expert and industry analyst from New York, specializing in picking the hits from the misses.
For more movie articles, and to learn how to download movie blockbusters, please make a trip to

Indiana Jones Returns - Too Little, Too Late?

For those who came of age in the 1980s during a time of sleek consumerism and homogenous globalization, Indiana Jones was something of an idol. Harking back to a time when the jungles of South America and the Pyramids of Egypt were truly a world away, the Indiana Jones trilogy excited in us a feeling of adventure that has been rarely seen before or since.

The popularity of the Indiana Jones movies stems not just from the fact that they were directed and acted by some of the greatest Hollywood talent of the day, but also from the fact that the movies were classic adventures. They were swashbuckling epics that found an ideal mix of adventure, intrigue and mystery, steeped in myth and mysticism.

This formula was clearly successful. The first Indiana Jones movie, Raiders of the Lost Ark, was the highest grossing movie of 1981 and was nominated for eight Academy Awards (of which it won four). The following two instalments, Temple of Doom and The Last Crusade, fared almost as well, each winning an Academy Award and grossing hundreds of millions of dollars.

Since 1989, though, all has been quiet on the Indy front. Despite regular calls for a fourth movie there were no developments for years. Rumor and hearsay surrounded plans for the fourth Indiana Jones movie since 1995, when Last Crusade writer Jeffrey Boam was asked to write a script.

Since then, several screenwriters and directors have attempted to take on the project -- including Chris Columbus (Home Alone), M Night Shyamalan (The Sixth Sense) and Frank Darabont (The Shawshank Redemption) -- without success.

Finally, though, Steven Spielberg, George Lucas and Harrison Ford have accepted a script written by David Koepp (Spiderman, War of the Worlds). As of July 2006 Spielberg and Koepp were fine-tuning the screenplay in advance of pre-production, expected to begin in early 2007.

The question that will be repeatedly posed by fans of the series over the next couple of years is this: will it be possible to recreate the magic of the original trilogy? Hollywood has moved on since the 1980s, and audiences have come to demand big budget CGI and dazzling visual effects. Despite winning the Academy Award for Visual Effects with Temple of Doom, the appeal of the Indiana Jones movies was never in their special effects. In fact, Temple of Doom -- admitted by Lucas and Spielberg as the most visual effects-heavy of the trilogy -- saw the most disappointing box office performance of the three.

The main concern, though, is Harrison Ford's age. Already in his 40s in Raiders of the Lost Ark, Ford will be at least 65 when filming begins on the fourth movie. Even with the use of makeup, camera trickery and stuntmen, how can it be possible to remain faithful to the original trilogy when the star is old enough to draw a pension?

Despite these worries, however, one thing is certain. Come the release date a couple of years from now we'll see a sudden surge in the sales of fedoras and bullwhips. He may be old enough to qualify for a buss pass, but there's something about Indiana Jones that brings out the child in us all.

James Shenton is an entertainment writer and gossip columnist. James can often be found writing about movie trilogies such as Indiana Jones and Star Wars (don't get him started on the last three episodes). For similar articles and film downloads, take a look at


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