Category Archive : Innovations

5 Reasons You Should Learn ReactJS

Though React faces competition from other big names, the library is still the preferred choice of many developers worldwide. It’s often the right choice if you’re looking to build a new web application, and a compilation of templates means it’s easier than ever to create a workable interface. On top of that, React knowledge is popular with employers, universities, and advanced learning programs.

Whether you’re a business school applicant that’s looking to gain a competitive edge or you’re a job-seeker that wants to amp up your resume, here are a few reasons why you should learn ReactJS.

1. React Native improves the application development process.

Your standard application process involves a fair amount of R&D efforts and application optimization for disparate devices, impeding the process. Using different kits and tools for different operating system applications bogs down the app development process and is a key weakness for developers. Using React Native and the React-Admin framework, you can capably develop functioning applications for common operating systems like iOS and Android. This way, you don’t have to learn multiple ways to present a single application. In fact, once you’ve built up your React background, you can offer applications to your target audience members more quickly, efficiently, and widely. Since wide availability can impact product success or failure, it’s important to know you’re creating more accessible applications that touch on unique market needs.

2. ReactJS offers home automation options.

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React-Admin is one of the many tools you’ll see applied to home automation and management efforts. With React-Admin, the admin panel, and the general framework, you’re able to streamline the automation process and build open-source apps that connect distinct devices to your router. This means you can tie up an automation network to your mobile devices, My Cloud Home products, and other smart home devices like your speaker setup, security devices, and more. There are even existing examples of React users developing smart home interfaces that update in real-time. With the right triggers and feedback loops, it’s possible to create a more privatized automation network that offers greater levels of control.

3. React has a robust community of learners and professionals.

Whether you’re actively meeting with an MBA application consultant to prepare for business school or you’re trying to add another skill to a resume full of work experience, you’re liable to meet a kindred spirit in the React community. In fact, without the community, many modern React use cases wouldn’t exist. Since members actively contribute to the open-source library, it grows at a significant rate. It also allows users to contribute their own components to the library. Members talk across Reddit, Github, and other popular forums to exchange ideas, projects, and components. So, whether you want to impress MBA admissions with your skillset or you want to meet other career professionals, the React userbase can help.

4. Many corporations use React.

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Even if you’re fresh out of the top school in the country, some corporations won’t consider you for employment unless you present current, competitive skills. As such, many business schools and STEM students want to add React to their resumes. Part of the reason why React is so popular is that it was built to scale alongside business and application needs. It’s also proven that it has the capacity to do so. React was originally developed by Facebook, which shows that it has large-scale end-users. If you have an internet connection and use web apps developed by your favorite brands, developers can build those web apps on the React framework. Many brands work directly with React or tangentially to the framework from data providers to top business schools.

5. React has a smaller learning curve.

One key strength of React is that it doesn’t require a degree from Harvard Business School to master. While secondary education can help you get the comprehensive package and layouts of React, you can learn a fair amount on your own without ever spending a cent. Compared to Angular, React isn’t as “heavy,” and it’s also more intuitive. While thinking in React might require a few adjustments here and there, you’ll soon be able to create objects and apps after a few days of learning and research. This is doubly effective if you already have a stronger working knowledge of JavaScript. However, even the novice developer can learn different React concepts and incorporate them into web applications.

In many ways, React is the best way to develop applications that give you full control. While you might need a tutorial or two before you get started, the right insights can set you on a path to React success. Whether you’re looking to impress your MBA admission consultant or you want to start developing more impactful applications, React is your best bet. This frontend framework offers some helpful tools and a group of users that you can’t beat.

How Does Industrial Fermentation Work?

If you’ve ever enjoyed a cool beer on a warm day, eaten yogurt, or sliced through a fresh loaf of sourdough bread as you make breakfast, you’ve enjoyed the results of the fermentation process. This is because fermentation has a pretty big role in our everyday lives, whether we’re aware of it or not. In fact, tiny microorganisms (such as yeast) or strains of bacteria (such as E. coli) are used to transform raw ingredients with starches and glucose in them into the delicious eats and drinks we enjoy. You can be a home fermenter by working on a sourdough starter in your kitchen. Still, if companies and businesses want to benefit from the natural wonders that fermentation techniques provide, they’ll need to look to biotechnology experts and industrial fermentation facilities.

You can think of an industrial fermentation facility like a huge version of your bowl at home with the sourdough starter in it. The major difference (beyond scale) is the risks involved. When the biomass in your sourdough dies, you can tell right away and throw it out. When biotechnology professionals take the fermentation of large volumes of materials upon themselves (whether they’re making yogurt or medicine), they can’t afford for any microbial contamination to get in the way of the fermentation process. That could spell a hazardous situation for consumers. If you’re interested in exactly how biotechnology professionals keep their biomass safe from microbial contamination, read on.

Industrial Fermentation for Commercial Products

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The word “bacteria” may sound dangerous (after all, that’s why we have antibiotics, isn’t it?), but there are plenty of examples of good bacteria, or microbes, out there. A microbiology expert will tell you that the human body is full of good bacteria, making our digestive systems and everything else work the way it should. That’s called our microbiome. Problems only begin to crop up when our microbiome gets thrown out of whack by some bad bacteria throwing off things’ balance. That’s why the purification of food products that require fermentation is crucial. Glucose and carbohydrates provide fuel for microbes and yeast, and when they’re introduced, those microbes or yeast split and multiply, creating lactic acid. If you’ve ever tasted the tangy taste of fresh yogurt, or beer, or even kombucha, you know what lactic acid tastes like, whether you’re aware or not. All of that is well and good, but be sure that whoever is in charge of the industrial fermentation of that grape kombucha is insisting on the highest levels of purification before you enjoy the flavor of your cool, good-bacteria-laden beverage.

Batch Fermentation for Antibiotics

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You may be thinking to yourself, “wait, isn’t E. coli bad?” You’re not wrong; certain strains of E. coli can be very dangerous and can cause dangerous bouts of diarrhea that can leave a person dehydrated and even dying. However, other E. coli are always present in the human microbiome, as well as the microbiome of many animals. This is another example of the difference between a contaminant (or “bad bacteria”) and a useful microbe (or the “good bacteria”).

It’s strange to think that biochem professionals make antibiotics like penicillin that fight bad bacteria by using good bacteria. This form of industrial fermentation is similar to the one described above, but it differs significantly, and that has to do with batch fermentation. Think about it; you don’t want an ongoing batch of penicillin hanging around a laboratory, the way a sourdough starter lives in your closet or kitchen counter forever, right? You want the biochem professionals to take purification and contaminants seriously and remake that batch every time. The good news is that this is exactly what is done. Batch fermentation means that each time a batch of penicillin or a similar medicine is made, they start fresh with a new batch. This way, all variables are taken into account, and we can all be certain that any pills that make it to your pharmacy are completely free of contaminants.

Fermentation can sound complicated, but it doesn’t have to be. You don’t have to be a biochem major to understand the basics of this process. It’s exciting to think about how the new approaches in biochemical engineering are working alongside age-old techniques like fermentation to take both food and medicine to the next level.

5 Tips for Managing a Research Lab

Management isn’t easy, whether you’re running a train station, a gallery, or a research lab. That being said, running a lab comes with more risks than running a boutique clothing shop does. There are plenty of hazards that the house team at a lab comes into contact with daily. Various dangerous materials, complicated machinery, and other dangers lie in wait for laboratory workers. There’s a reason that OSHA standards exist, and it’s to make sure that laboratories remain safe spaces for people to work in, whether they’re filled with software developers or chemists.

While this may sound daunting, there are a few key things to keep in mind that can make running a research laboratory a smooth experience. Read more to find out about the best way to maintain occupation safety and avoid unnecessary hazards to your house team’s health.

1. Keep everyone awake and hydrated.

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Sometimes software developers, scientists, and other laboratory employees have to work long hours on detailed tasks. This is especially common if the laboratory you’re running is part of a small business that’s trying to make waves and stand out on the scene. If this is the case, you want to ensure that your team isn’t falling asleep as they work, especially when there are health hazards lying about and dangerous machinery that shouldn’t be operated when drowsy. However, despite wanting everyone to be awake, you also don’t want to blow your entire small business’ budget at Starbucks or Peet’s.

One solution to this problem is to sign up for a coffee delivery service. Really excellent coffee service will allow you to choose the blend and roast of the coffee you’re ordering, whether it’s espresso or brewing coffee, and you can even add flavor preferences or specialty teas to your order. With a coffee subscription, you’ll be saving money on cups of coffee and making sure that the house team at your startup is focused on the task at hand and not keeping their drooping eyelids from closing.

2. Make sure you’re using pure water without contaminants.

If you’re developing software, you don’t need to think about pure water, deionizers, or reverse osmosis processes, but many other research facilities do need to be aware of these issues. If you’re working with delicate materials, you know that tap water will not do the kind of tasks you’re carrying out. Deionized water (DI water) purified through reverse osmosis is free of contaminants and impurities, not to mention minerals like calcium that are often found in ‘hard water.’ If you want to adhere to best practices for maintaining water purity and keeping ions and minerals like calcium, sodium, or magnesium out of your water source, you need to invest in a deionized water solution for your laboratory. While it may seem like an extravagance, bear in mind that impurities and ions in the water can compromise your whole research project, so taking care of the liquid you use is actually a crucial part of managing a successful research facility.

3. Learn more about OSHA requirements.

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Safety has to be the priority, regardless of what you’re researching and which time zone of the United States you’re operating in. After all, a supervisor’s role is to make sure everything runs smoothly, which means keeping the workplace secure and comfortable. Some supervisors show resistance when they learn all they must do to adhere to OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration) standards. Still, the truth is that a certificate of OSHA compliance shows that employer responsibility is being taken seriously in a facility.

If you’re a supervisor or project manager who needs to get your facility up to code and aren’t sure where to start, OSHA training courses are available for that purpose precisely. During the OSHA training course, a trainer will walk you through all the steps involved in getting your facility OSHA compliant. Everything from mitigating hazards to fall protection comes up during the training course, so you’ll be sure to be prepared for anything the OSHA representatives ask of you.

4. Put software outsourcing to good use.

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A project manager can keep everyone on task and safe by using a software outsourcing company to manage databases, manage projects, and get customized software geared to a facility’s specific needs. Software out sourcing and working with software developers or software engineers who have the ability to understand your needs and streamline your employee experience will make everything easier.

By employing a software solution grounded in machine learning and artificial intelligence, a business owner or supervisor such as yourself can be using programs that are continuously learning about your specific business needs. Keeping track of suppliers, streamlining workflow and communication, and data management or analysis will all take your capacity to the next level. This is critical for several important reasons. By relying upon an outsourced company for software development, you’ll be working with sharper tools without the expense of paying someone on your house team to figure out the nuts and bolts for you.

5. Invest in employee experience.

Happy employees take more care with their work, and that’s just the simple truth. In fact, this may be the most important thing that a business owner can invest in. You can have the best coffee, the purest deionized water, and the smartest software developers, but if your employees aren’t happy, you can count on a lousy workflow. That, of course, means that you won’t bring financial success to your small business the way that Prabir Purohit brought to Dominion Energy. Take an example from Purohit. He knew that it’s not just about being the most important worksite in the U.S.; it’s about having a development team that cares about company values and feels committed to one another. Whether you’re in South Carolina, Maine, New York, or California, you need to have a finger on the pulse of your house team’s social dynamics. Ensure everyone is happy and fulfilled, and you’ll be running a successful worksite in no time.

5 Excellent Resources for People With Disabilities

Living with a disability doesn’t mean you need to be limited in how you experience life. There is a wide range of resources available to people with disabilities to help them lead active lives. Some simple assistive aids and devices can make a significant difference for those living with disabilities and their families or caregivers, in many cases. Learning what options are available to you may feel difficult because most people are unaware of disability resources unless they directly impact their lives. Here are five resources to be aware of.

Online Hearing Tests

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Going back and forth to the audiologist can be tiresome or complicated, depending on your schedule and transportation needs, not to mention expensive. An online hearing test can cut down on trips needed to the audiologist. Your audiologist can determine if you need hearing aid devices through your online screening. Profound hearing loss is a disability within itself, but it can also exacerbate other disabilities, making it increasingly difficult to communicate. Damage to the ear canal can cause hearing loss suddenly or overtime, depending on the extent of the damage. If you have normal hearing, it’s vital to protect it by avoiding dangerous activities that could lead to severe hearing loss.

There are many types of hearing aids that can help with each type of hearing loss. A licensed physician can help you maintain your social skills and perform all your recreational activities with a new hearing aid.

Day Habilitation Centers

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Day habilitation for the disabled provides a safe and engaging setting for people with developmental disabilities. Community habilitation provides activities, education, and work opportunities while caregivers can rest or go to work themselves. Lifestyles for the Disabled runs day habilitation centers with years of experience in the field to provide the best possible opportunities for their consumers.

The level of engagement varies based on the needs of each consumer. A day habilitation program is a highly valuable resource for both the consumer and their caretakers. Caring for someone with intellectual disabilities is a full-time job and can be mentally and emotionally exhausting. With a resource center, your loved one can go where you know they will be safe, cared for, and engaged, and that is invaluable.

Mobility Aids

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Mobility aids include crutches, walkers, wheelchairs, and other devices that make it easier for people with disabilities to move around. Mobility can include balance or strength, so different options are available depending on individual mobility needs. Some devices can be added to vehicles to help people move in and out of the vehicle to make it easier to leave the house.

Falling creates a serious risk for people with disabilities, and mobility aids will lessen the risk of falling. Removing area rugs, cleaning up spills immediately, and keeping furniture well spaced are other ways to lessen the risk of falling.

Smart Home Devices

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Many view smart home devices as a luxury, but for people with disabilities, they can greatly enhance home life by making it easier to get what they need without having to constantly get up and down or move around. For someone with vision or hearing problems, being able to turn lights on and off from a still position can reduce the risk of falls or injuries. For someone with mobility problems, being able to control things from a still position can make their home life easier and more enjoyable.

Assistive Technology

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Assistive technology includes a wide range of computers and software programs designed to aid people with disabilities. This includes computers that will read any documents, mail, or books out loud. Other assistive technology forms include keyboards, joysticks, and other devices adapted to someone with limited mobility. Vehicles adapted to have handles instead of a wheel or pedals at a different height or spacing are also considered assistive technology because they allow people with disabilities to utilize them without difficulty.

No matter what kinds of disabilities a person is living with, there are assistive options available, and they only get better as technology improves.

How to Succeed in School the Rory Gilmore Way

If you’re looking for some fictionalized inspiration to kickstart your study habits, there’s no doubt that Rory Gilmore will be one of the first characters to come to mind. Whether you’re an avid Gilmore Girls fan or you’ve only seen GIFs of Rory and Lorelai eating junk food, absorbing all the pop culture they can get their hands on, or drinking inordinate amounts of coffee, you probably conflate “Rory Gilmore” and “book smart” in your mind. Luckily, we’ve had eight seasons of the Gilmores to inspire us. Channel your inner Rory for massive success in school!

Do the Readings, Then Read Some More

Always keep a book with you. While it won’t have the all-important book smell, you can even download the free Kindle app to your phone to have a digital library with you wherever you go. When your teacher assigns a book, read it—not the SparkNotes version. But be sure to branch out, too. If a topic comes up in class that interests you, search for book titles in that subject on Amazon or Google. And, don’t forget to have your daily dose of fiction, whether it’s a classic or a new release. Want to go all-in? Check out the Rory Gilmore Reading Challenge to read all of the titles Rory read in the series.

Caffeinate

No true Gilmore Girl would try to get through the day (or a study session) without a pick-me-up. If you don’t like coffee, opt for your favorite energizing drink instead—did you know that Alexis Bledel dislikes coffee and usually had cola in her mug?

Study, Study, Study

This one should be obvious: Rory studies like a superhuman. However, adhering to a study schedule that intense might lead to burnout, which will only detract from your goals in the long run. Check out your favorite studyblr or head to Pinterest for some inspiration to kickstart your study habits. For example, check out the Pomodoro method to prevent study fatigue. Find yourself floundering still? Look into a summer boot camp to boost your standardized test scores (to Rory-approved levels) and build better study habits.

Stock Up On Supplies

A pleasing aesthetic certainly isn’t the most important part of your study routine, but it helps keep you motivated. Color-code your notes. Make the pretty flashcards. Keep your planner updated and ready for scheduling study dates and extracurriculars. Head to your version of Doose’s Market (or, you know, Amazon) and pick up whatever pens, highlighters, notebooks, and other office supplies bring a bit of joy to your school day.

Don’t Forget the Brain Food

Any self-respecting Gilmore girl will be ready with Pop-Tarts, takeout, and whatever the daily choice is at Al’s Pancake World. Your brain needs plenty of food to fuel all that schoolwork, right? Keep a special treat on hand for your study sessions—you can even use it as one of your motivation techniques.

Dress the Part

While you’re studying and working through assignments at home, a messy bun and sweats are fine. But, when you’re actually in class, a little effort goes a long way. Not only will you make a better impression on your peers and teachers, but also you’ll feel better (and work better). Channel Rory’s schoolgirl look with petite cardigans and pleated skirts, or shop around for something that matches your personal style and helps you look like the serious student you’re becoming.

Sometimes You’ll Fall Short (and That’s Okay)

While Rory is undoubtedly the reigning queen of studying, she’s not perfect. Even fictional humans make mistakes (I mean, look at the Gilmore Girls revival…). Sometimes she gets bad grades. She makes poor decisions. She messes up, just like we all do. The most important thing is that you bounce back afterward. Even when you have a bad day, know that your hard work will pay off down the road if you keep it up.

Rory Gilmore might not be the perfect role model, but her study success can’t be beaten. Get dressed in your prep school best, learn the right study habits for you, grab some coffee and a donut, and get to work!

3 Things Every Woman Should Invest in by 25

As a young woman, people have a lot of opinions about where you should put your attention, but all you want to do is find the best way to get ahead! Too much advice from your elders can make your head spin, and leave you a little confused about what to prioritize. In the face of life’s many challenges, take control of your mind, body, and pocketbook by making these three smart investments.

Take self-care to the next level

Bath bombs and manicures can only get you so far. Although material things can be an effective way to take care of yourself, make a deeper investment by taking care of your mental health. With singers, actors, and athletes coming forward and discussing their struggles, the conversation surrounding mental health has become much more widespread, mainstream, and there’s significantly less of a stigma surrounding seeking help. Once you’ve made a commitment to yourself, it’s important to find the right therapist. According to the Therapy Group of NYC, one in four adults has received treatment in the United States, and around 80 percent found it to be effective. Young women deal with a lot on a daily basis, and despite aspirations for a more equal and safe future, harassment, pay inequality, and micro-aggressions plague their daily lives. There are NYC therapists who can help you take every moment in stride.

Harness the power of organic

Sometimes in order to harness your best self, you have to look to the original mother, Mother Earth. Although the evidence isn’t conclusive yet, research has found that consumers who buy organic tend to have overall healthier lifestyles. Experiment with different organic items that will make you feel like a goddess. CBD is quickly becoming one of the hottest organic products on the market. If you experience occasional sleeplessness or just want to maintain healthy joint mobility throughout your life, SeraRelief’s full-spectrum CBD capsules may be just what you need to add to your daily routine. They’re scientifically formulated, organic, and use high-quality CBD. You can use this product worry-free because they contain even less than the legal amount of THC, so you won’t experience any psychoactive effects. Just remember to contact your doctor before starting to use CBD to make sure it won’t have any interactions with the medications you’re currently taking and you’ll be good to go.

Invest in the future you

With life demanding so much of you in the present, it can be easy to pass on thinking about the future. Make your future even brighter by investing your money into a savings app for retirement. There are many different options to get you started. The best ones for millennials don’t require you to have a lot of money upfront and understand that you won’t initially be contributing a lot of cash. With apps like Stash, you can make a minimum deposit of five dollars a month. All you have to do is skip your daily coffee once a month and you’ll have money to invest in your bright future. If you only have some spare change lying around—absolutely no judgment, life is hard—Acorns might be a better fit for the time being. Eventually, this invested money and time will start to add up. There’s nothing better than a little financial stability. Your future self will thank you!

Young women often feel spread thin in the current political and socio-economic climate. Combat that by investing in the things that matter. Empower your life by seeing a therapist that works for you, shopping organic, and paving a way financially for the future of your dreams.

Scientific Ways to Make Yourself Look and Feel More Attractive

Feeling attractive is more psychological than physical. Believe it or not, there is a science to attractiveness that goes beyond genetics. These are some scientific ways to make yourself look and feel more attractive.

Wear the Right Scent

Fragrances have a powerful impact on the brain. Some scents can trigger positive emotions and bring out good memories. Confidence is directly related to positivity, so it makes sense to wear a fragrance associated with happy times. Wearing a subtle amount of an attractive fragrance makes one more attractive to others, which further increases confidence and inspires an attractive body language.

Dress in Red

A pop of color in an outfit is a great way to attract attention. Wearing red, the color of passion, not only attracts attention but it also makes people see the wearer as more attractive. Studies have shown that men perceive women to be more attractive, even sexier when wearing red clothing or lipstick. The color itself is what draws attention, and the feeling of being noticed is what leads to feeling more confident.

Makeup and Eyebrows

Well-maintained eyebrows go a long way toward attractiveness. Get in the habit of regularly shaping eyebrows either at home or with an esthetician and know how to fill in sparse areas and create a defined arch. Many cultures find bold eyebrows that create facial contrast as highly attractive.

Women should wear simple makeup and pop it with colorful lipstick and played up eyes. Wearing mascara opens the eyes, lengthens lashes, and defines the eyes. Applying magnetic eyelashes is a quick and simple way to create an attractive look. Glamnetic’s magnetic eyeliner and mink eyelashes can be reused multiple times. Simply remove lashes with olive oil or coconut oil and place them back in their magnetized tray to keep their shape. Glamnetic carries a range of eyelashes in different lengths and colors to help women achieve any desired look.

Stand Tall

Body language and posture play a big role in attractiveness. Taking a dominant stance or power pose increases confidence and signals to others a sense of power. Lazy or standoffish body language, like hunched shoulders or crossed arms, is less attractive. Standing tall with shoulders back and arms relaxed gives an approachable vibe and attracts others.

Those with strong jawlines are perceived as more attractive. Women who see men with their chins up perceive them as assertive and confident. Be conscious of holding the head up high in a way that defines the jawline and slims the neck.

Don’t Forget Sunglasses

Wearing sunglasses adds a sense of mystery to any look and boosts facial symmetry. Just like clothing, it’s important to wear the right sunglasses that complement face shape. Rounder faces do better with angular frames while angular faces do better with rounder frames. The right style of sunglasses makes the face look more proportionate which increases attractiveness.

Get an Adrenaline Rush

A healthy way to boost attractiveness is to exercise. Exercising causes the brain to release endorphins that lower stress levels, give a sense of well-being, and boost confidence. These factors not only make one feel more attractive, but others also notice as well. Another way to be more attractive is to participate in extreme activities that cause an adrenaline rush. Women tend to find men who do risky activities, like extreme sports, more attractive.

Well-being starts from within and sometimes a little help goes a long way. Complement exercise with daily CBD usage to increase feelings of calm and relaxation. The CBD Insider features in-depth product reviews from major CBD brands. The more that CBD becomes mainstream and popular, the more consumers want to make informed decisions about what to use and why. The CBD Insider routinely publishes articles to educate consumers and give them the tools necessary to make informed purchase decisions.

What’s a Good Gift for Someone With Alzheimer’s?

Choosing Christmas gifts isn’t exactly an easy job. To get your gift right, you must know at least a little bit about the person you’re going to surprise. But what if that person is no longer who they used to be? 

Sadly, Alzheimer’s disease results in a change of course in sufferers’ lives. This common form of dementia gradually destroys brain cells, causing irreversible memory loss that might require the assistance of a caregiver. Although the symptoms of Alzheimer’s aren’t curable, certain medications can help control patients’ behaviors in mild to moderate stages. 

If you’re unsure about what to give a beloved family member with Alzheimer’s this holiday season, read on to find the best gift ideas, regardless of the stage he or she finds themselves in. 

Early-stage Alzheimer’s gifts

In the early stages of Alzheimer’s, patients have milder symptoms. These include agitation, losing track of time, misplacement of belongings, and having difficulty in completing familiar tasks. In this case, gifts that can stimulate your loved one’s memory while also being a source of enjoyment are great options. Here are a few alternatives to get you started.

Jigsaw puzzles

Puzzles aren’t only challenging and fun, but they help boost short-term memory, as well. Studies have suggested that puzzles and memory games decrease the damage that naturally happens in the brain of Alzheimer’s and dementia patients. 

A memory box

It’s hard to accept that your loved one’s memory will eventually fade. Since it might take a long time before that happens, create a special memory box filled with items of sentimental value. This way, the person you’ll give it to can remember special moments without much effort. 

Adult coloring books

A set of crayons and a coloring book can be the ideal gift. Why? Because coloring is a great activity to improve manual dexterity in seniors. It’s also an easy game they can play with their grandkids anytime. 

An iPod

Some songs can be nostalgic. Giving them an iPod with their favorite songs downloaded will probably be the best gift they’ve ever received. It doesn’t have to be pricey, either: websites like TheStore sell tech (new and restored) for up to 70 percent off. Enjoy!

Late-stage Alzheimer’s gifts

In later stages, there’s not a lot that family members can do but offer their support and get used to advanced symptoms that require 24/7 care. The elderly need companionship and affection more than ever, and the following gift ideas will help you show some love. 

A self-care day
A spa day is always a good idea. The ladies will love a professional manicure or pedicure, whereas the men could enjoy a foot massage with lotions. Base yourself off their preferences and get creative with this one. 

Lap robes in their favorite color

Late patients tend to become wheelchair-bound. Make their day by giving them a lap robe in their favorite color, or even better, crochet or customize it yourself for a unique present. 

Comfortable wear

A warm sweater, fluffy slippers, and winter hats; when it comes to being comfy, there are so many options to choose from. We’re sure any of the above would make anyone’s cold day better. 

Baby dolls or stuffed animals

No one can resist a cute furry animal or a cozy baby doll. After all, they’re comforting and can be an adorable company, especially during the night. A quick tip: make it a surprise. They’ll love it even more!

A locket necklace

Even though your loved one may forget your name or your face, they can keep your picture close to their heart with a locket necklace. This ornament is a beautiful, sentimental gift that can last for generations to come. Be certain that the memories you put in it will never fade away. 

Finding Your Passion

Passion is a powerful thing. It can become a lucrative career or a wonderful hobby that improves your mental health. But not everyone has a passion—or, perhaps more accurately, not everyone knows what their passion is. If you’re in search of something that moves you, then you’ve come to the right place. Here are a few ways to embrace your inner creative. 

It might be right in front of you! 

A funny thing happens to people sometimes: They worry that they have no direction in life, and then they take solace in their passions without even realizing that they have them. Maybe it’s an office worker coming home from a long day and breaking out paints and an easel to relax. Maybe it’s a full-time janitor and part-time musician who doesn’t realize how talented they really are. Before you assume that you need to “find” your passion, you should check to see if it’s right in front of you!

Think about how you spend your time, and think about what brings you joy. Think about the things that you wish you had more time for. One of them might be the thing that you were put on this Earth to do.

Start thinking and reading up on your interests. 

If an obvious passion doesn’t come to you right away, don’t fret. Instead, just start thinking. What do you like to read about? Maybe that’s your passion. If you don’t know what you like to read about, maybe you should head to the library and find out! Consider movies and podcasts, too. What interests you? Keep brainstorming, take notes, and indulge yourself: Just think, without putting pressure on yourself, and come up with a big list of ideas. They don’t have to all make sense! As you read, research, and think, you’ll likely start seeing connections.

Know when it’s a job—and when it’s not.

To paraphrase the old saying, a person who knows what they love to do never has to work a day in their life. All they have to do is turn their passion into a lucrative career. Right?

Well, sort of. But it’s important to remember a few things. For one, your job doesn’t have to be your passion; it may only make use of it. For instance, someone who loves tinkering with cars and gadgets may become an expert in forklift engine maintenance, filling a much-needed role that maybe people don’t even think about. And, of course, a passion for debate can turn a person on to politics or law, and a love of science can lead to careers in medicine, research, and so much more. Don’t assume that everyone who gets their “dream job” is doing nothing but wonderful stuff. Doctors deal with logs and paperwork, for instance—a job is still a job, even if there are parts of it that you love!

Some passions can be “side-hustles” instead of full-time jobs. If you’re a talented painter, for instance, you might want to start selling your work on Etsy—but that doesn’t mean that you have to quit your day job. Sometimes, it’s nice to have the freedom to choose when and when not to indulge in your passion. If you make your passion your main source of income, then you might be surprised to find it transformed into a dreary obligation.

It’s also important to remember that some passions are better suited to being hobbies. Just ask acclaimed lawyer and mineral enthusiast Howard Fensterman. Fensterman is incredibly passionate about minerals and gemstones, and he knows an impressive amount about them. He maintains a blog on the subject and is active within the collecting community. But Howard Fensterman does not consider his mineral obsession a job—he already has one of those, thanks to his successful career as an attorney. For Howard Fensterman, this all works out splendidly. In this case, we’re looking at a passion that is best expressed as a hobby.

It’s vital to remember that passion is just that—passion. It’s something that you care about and something that brings you joy. If you find that your passion is building things out of tongue depressors, then you shouldn’t feel pressure to somehow turn that into a career. You shouldn’t even feel pressure to put your work on Etsy. Just have fun, and nurture your passion. You’ll be happier and healthier if you do.

What Equipment Is Needed to Run a Call Center?

When you set up a call center, you streamline the process for your team to achieve goals. A great set up starts with considering how many employees you’ll need and setting concrete objectives for your call center. 

Once those are established, you’ll want to make sure the call center equipment you use is right for your needs. Here are some tips for getting your new system running. 

Find Practical Computers

Call center operations use sophisticated software to enhance the customer experience and ensure that all calls are routed to the right agent for minimum frustration and maximum efficiency. The desktop computer is the basic element undergirding the whole operation. Even when using cloud-based call center software, agents need a way to access it.

Locate your nearest uBreakiFix location so any computer issues can be fixed the right way the first time, and with minimal downtime. As you buy, choose desktops over laptops. While some laptops are cheaper, there are good reasons to prefer desktops: 

  • Faster processing speeds at a lower cost than equivalent speeds on a laptop
  • More storage space
  • More connections for working with headsets, microphones or any other add-ons
  • Greater safety for your investment, as a larger size, makes them harder to steal and less likely to be moved and dropped

Use Efficient Headsets

Your personnel needs quality headsets. The traditional phone simply won’t do the job, and a poor quality headset will result in frustrated customers (and agents). Agents will have difficulty hearing the customer over the noise of the call center, and customers will have trouble making out the agent if the headsets aren’t equipped with a quality microphone.

While choosing a headset is always a balance of cost and quality, good headsets have a few things in common:

  • They are wired since wireless headsets have to be recharged and cost more for equivalent quality
  • They are comfortable so that agents are not tempted to remove them frequently
  • They offer noise reduction technology that enables agents to hear customers clearly
  • They have a reputation for quality, so you don’t have to replace them in just a few months
  • They have USB connections for the best sound quality and voice clarity

Select User-Friendly Software 

The software you choose for your call center should improve quality and speed. Good software gets your agents, customers and business goals all on the same page and reduces handling times, callbacks, and transfers. The right software will also offer you a high degree of functionality without the need to invest in extensive on-premises infrastructure.

There are many types of cloud-based call center software available, but not all are created equal. Here’s what to look for:

  • Omnichannel integration so you can communicate with your customers seamlessly across channels
  • Call center quality management so you can observe, measure, and evaluate how the call center is performing
  • Consistent, reliable uptime with 24/7 customer support
  • Scalability so your call center can respond flexibly to your business needs
  • Predictive dialers with CRM integrations and customizable workflow

Settle In With Comfortable Equipment

Call centers have an unpleasant reputation for high turnover among agents. Every time an agent leaves, you have to find a new one, retrain them, and accept slower speeds and lowered efficiency for a while as the new agent learns the ropes. One simple way of retaining your call center agents is by making them comfortable.

You may choose to make agents comfortable by hiring them to work from home, but if you have them come to your facility, here are some things to consider getting:

  • Chairs comfortable enough to sit in for hours at a time
  • Desks designs and computer mice that minimize repetitive stress injury
  • Lighting that is comfortable rather than glaring
  • Blue light filters for computer screens to minimize headaches and eyestrain
  • A break room where agents can decompress