Friday, 31 May 2013

Bathroom safety

Water carries electricity efficiently. When the two mix, the result can kill. Because of this, from an electrical safety point of view, the bathroom is possibly the most dangerous room in the home. The consequences of an electric shock are far more severe in a bathroom or shower room as wet skin reduces the body's resistance. There are special requirements for electrical installations in bathrooms.

Sockets are not allowed in bathrooms or shower rooms (apart from shaver-supply units), unless they can be fitted at least three metres from the bath or shower.

Shaver-supply units must be a safe distance from the bath or shower to avoid splashes.

Enclosed ceiling lights are preferable to pendant light fittings (ones that hang down). All light fittings that are not enclosed should be out of reach of someone  using, or still wet from using, the bath or shower.

A ceiling-mounted pull-cord switch with the cord made of insulating material is the safest option for a bathroom. Standard wall mounted light switches are a possible danger because of dampness and wet hands.

Heaters and towel rails
Central heating is a good way of keeping a bathroom warm. But, if you do have an electric room heater, it must be fixed at a safe distance from the bath or shower.
Electric and gas water heaters in a bathroom must be fixed and permanently wired, unless they are powered by a socket fitted three metres from a bath or shower.
Electric heaters should preferably be controlled by a pull cord or a switch outside the bathroom.

An electric shower must be supplied on its own circuit direct from the consumer unit.

  1. Don't bring mains-powered portable appliances such as hairdryers, heaters or radios into a bathroom. You could be severely injured or killed. You can get a fixed hairdryer with hot air delivered through a flexible plastic pipe installed in bathrooms.
need help?

Thursday, 30 May 2013

3D Holograms

as a sci fi freak, I love the idea of 3D Holograms

well guess, what you can now get a projector array from PC world...

Sorry, only kidding

it is actually currently under development at the University of Arizona. Inspired by Star Wars, the team struggled to create a material capable of storing moving holographic information, but eventually had a breakthrough. It isn’t quite up to scratch yet (the picture only changes every two minutes), but they’re refining the technique.

cant wait!

Wednesday, 29 May 2013

Checking a Plug (UK only)

  1. Remove the plug from the socket and check the plug is not damaged.
  2. Look for signs of overheating, such as discoloured casing or cable.
  3. Check that the plug is marked British Standard BS 1363
  4. Check that the cable sheath is firmly clamped in the plug and that no coloured wires are showing.
All modern appliances in the UK use the familiar square-pin 13-amp plug. These plugs are used for handheld appliances such as hairdryers and vacuum cleaners, and appliances like microwave ovens. The plug and cable can suffer damage, particularly if they connect to handheld appliances. Checking a plug and its cable does not need a lot of detailed electrical knowledge and these tips should help.

With the plug removed from the socket, check the cable from end to end and ask the following questions. 
  1. Is the cable cut, worn or damaged in any way?
  2. There should preferably be no joints in the cable, and certainly no repairs with insulating tape.
  3. If for any reason, you need to check that a cable is correctly wired and fused, do the following:
  4. Remove the plug from the socket, and remove the cover. Check that:
  5. The brown wire goes to live (L);
  6. The blue wire goes to neutral (N); and
  7. The green-and-yellowwire goes toearth (E).
  8. Check that the cord clamp holds the cables heath securely and that both of the screws are tight.
  9. Check that the screws holding the three wires are tight.
  10. Check that the fuse is the correct size and meets British Standard BS 1362 - see the manufacturer's instructions if you are not sure what fuse to use. The fuse should clip securely into its holder. It should not be loose and there should be no signs of overheating.
  11. Replace the cover securely

Correctly wired plug
Most table lamps, standard lamps, televisions, computers, mixers, blenders, power drills, jigsaws, soldering irons will use 700W or less. Larger appliances such as washing machines, dishwashers and toasters, irons  and heaters will use more than 700W. For your convenience these are just standard two plug fuse ratings (3A and 13A). For appliances up to 700W, you use a 3A fuse. For those over 700W, you use a 13A fuse.

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

New Tech

Technology is advancing at a nauseating speed, and for proof you need look no further than your smartphone. You can communicate with people from around the world, listen to digitally-encoded music, play games, watch TV, shop for food and take photographs using something which slips comfortably inside your pocket. In the 1920s, it would have been unthinkable. This leads to numerous outlandish sci-fi predictions about what the future holds for us, and they’re notoriously unreliable and occasionally downright weird. Forgetting the hyper-intelligent chimp doomsday scenarios, we can actually expect some sci-fi style technologies pretty soon indeed.

were waiting with baited breath

Monday, 27 May 2013

Kitchen Safety

We all know that water and electricity make a lethal combination. So it's important that electrical equipment is installed correctly, and that you use appliances in your kitchen with care.

To avoid water coming into contact with electricity, make sure that your sockets or switches are fitted at a safe distance (at least 30 cm horizontally) from the sink.

If appliances such as fridges, dishwashers and washing machines are fitted under worktops, getting to sockets may be difficult. Ideally, these appliances should be controlled by a switched fuse connection unit mounted above the worktop where you can reach it easily.

If a socket in the kitchen, or anywhere else in the house is likely to be used to supply portable equipment outdoors, it should be protected by an RCD. Under the national safety standard, almost all sockets in new electrical installations and any new sockets added to an existing installation must have RCD protection.

  1. Use any electrical equipment or switches with wet hands;
  2. Wrap flexible cables around any equipment when it is still warm;
  3. Clean an appliance such as a kettle while it is still plugged in;
  4. Try to get toast that is stuck out of a toaster while it is plugged in, and especially not with a metal knife – there are often live parts inside; or
  5. Fill a kettle or a steam iron while it is plugged in.

Take special care when using electrical appliances in the kitchen - the mixture of water, hot surfaces, flexible cables and electricity can be very dangerous. Check that flexible leads and appliances such as kettles and toasters are in good condition.

need help?

Saturday, 25 May 2013

How much do you rely on adaptors and extensions around your home?

You can expect to find around four sockets in an average room in a house. Although this is enough for most purposes, an increase in the use of computers, games consoles and other appliances has led to the number of sockets being needed in an average room to increase to eight. Extension leads and adaptors often provide a quick and easy solution but, in reality, these leads and adaptors are often misused, and can present a very real danger. In extreme cases they can overheat, which can cause a fire.

  1. Use adaptors plugged into other adaptors; or
  2. Overload adaptors, particularly withhigh-current appliances such as kettles, irons and heaters. (Low –current appliances include radios, televisions, computers and hi-fi equipment.)
  3. Buy cheap, substandard adaptors
  4. The most sensible action would be to install extra sockets.While you are at it, ask a registered electrician to install twin sockets rather than single ones.
stay safe

Friday, 24 May 2013

We never close

we never really close - so if you do get in a spot of bother - call out number is here

Thursday, 23 May 2013

Obvious dangers – yet we all make these mistakes

Changing a belt on a vacuum cleaner while it is still plugged in
Always unplug an appliance before you try to do any maintenance. You risk injury from electric shock, burns and mechanical movement if you tackle maintenance before appliances are unplugged and have cooled down.

Trailing the cable under the carpet or rug to keep it out of the way.
Flexible cables trailed under carpets, rugs or across walkways are not only a major danger in terms of tripping , but also a fire risk.

Drying clothes on an electric heater, with water dripping onto live parts
This is particularly dangerous, and could cause an electric shock or fire. Many electrical appliances, such as heaters, have ventilation slots to prevent overheating. If these slots are covered up, the appliance could overheat and catch fire, or if water drips in, there is a risk of electric shock.

Installing downlighters
Choosing the wrong downlighters, installing them incorrectly or fitting the wrong replacement lamp can pose a serious fire risk in your home. It is best to use a registered electrician to install your downlighters and that you keep instructions in a safe place for future reference, such as when you need to replace a lamp. For your safety you should check for visible markings on downlighters indicating lamp wattage and lamp type.

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Should we stay in Europe? off topic

A letter to the Independent, figures from BT, Shell, Lloyds Banking Group and Deloitte, estimated membership was worth between £31bn and £92bn per year in income gains, or between £1,200 to £3,500 for every household.

I am not sure of The economic case to stay in the EU is overwhelming, as the money goes to companies and stays at the top of the tree or filters off to other parts of the companies to prop up their failing ventures...

what estiamte could vary between £31bn and £92bn?

come on, show me the figures. I want to know.

are you pro or sceptic. at the moment we are in the latter camp but are open to debate.

Get to know your electrics

Your property will have some of the following

Main Switch
The main switch in the consumer unit (fuse box) allows you to turn off the supply to your electrical installation. Some electrical installations have more than one main switch. For example, if your home is heated by electric storage heaters, you may have a separate consumer unit for them. The consumer unit should be easy to get to, so find out where the main switch is to turn the electricity off in an emergency.

Older homes often have re-wireable fuses which automatically disconnect the circuit to prevent danger. When a fault or overload current flows through the fuse wire, it will become hot, and melt when the current goes above a safe level. The melted fuse breaks the faulty circuit so protecting it against overloading

Newer homes are likely to have circuit-breakers in the consumer unit which switch off a circuit if there is a fault. Circuit-breakers are similar in size to fuse-holders, but give more precise protection than fuses. When they 'trip', you can simply reset the switch. However, you first need to find and correct the fault.

Residual current devices (RCD)
An RCD is a life-saving device which is designed to prevent you from getting a fatal electric shock if you touch something live, such as a bare wire. It provides a level of protection that ordinary fuses or circuit breakers cannot.

Under the UK safety standard, almost all sockets in new electrical installations and any new sockets added to an existing installation must have RCD protection

If your electrical installation includes one or more RCDs, you should check that they are working properly by pushing the test button every three months. When you test the RCD it should switch off the power to the areas of the home it protects.

If when you press the test button, your RCD does not switch off the electricity supply to the protected circuits, or if the button does not reset, get advice from a registered electrician.

Tuesday, 21 May 2013

There is one place where all cars are electric... can you guess?

Electric cars may still play second fiddle to petrol here on Earth, but they've dominated the Martian driving scene for more than a decade.

NASA's tiny Sojourner rover hit the red dirt in 1997, followed by the golf-cart-size twins Spirit and Opportunity in 2004. And last August, the 1-ton Curiosity rover dropped in to determine whether Mars could ever have supported microbial life.

All three generations of six-wheeled NASA rovers have used electric power systems of various design and complexity to find their way around the Red Planet.
there is water on Mars

Asbestos awareness training

Asbestos awareness training today...

Monday, 20 May 2013

Happy Birthday Darren

Darren Grace - its his birthday today :)

happy birthday

Product recall

The Electrical Safety Council (ESC) has called for manufacturers to face unlimited fines if they undertake inadequate or slow recalls, following growing concerns over the effectiveness of the recall system and the emergence of a number of serious incidents involving recalled products.

Mums, stay safe...

Saturday, 18 May 2013

Computer equipment

Household computers, printers, monitors and laptops on average make up around 13% of electricity around the home. Choosing an energy-efficient computer can have a real impact on your carbon dioxide emissions and your energy costs. If someone else is in charge of buying your equipment, ask about getting a laptop instead of a desktop, and see if they’re aware of Energy Saving Trust Recommended models, which use less energy in 'sleep' and 'standby' as well as when they're running.

Desktop and laptop PCs: Laptops typically uses 85% less electricity over a year than desktop PCs do, so they're already the more energy-efficient choice. If your computing needs are met by a laptop, then why not consider one as an alternative to a desktop PC? With smaller components and screens, laptops use much less electricity than desktop computers, which can save you around £26 a year. If you do need a desktop computer, choose a PC with the Energy Saving Trust Recommended label. This will mean it uses less energy in 'sleep' and 'standby' too - not just when it's running.

Inkjet printers: Whether it's a single-function or multi-function inkjet printer that copies, scans and faxes too, there's an energy saving choice. If you’re going to buy a printer, look for the Energy Saving Trust Recommended label - these printers use 40% less electricity in sleep mode than average new models.

Friday, 17 May 2013

Aragon and MacIntyre Family Open Day 2013

we hope you are coming to see us tomorrow...

Flitwick Leisure Centre
Saturday 18th May 2013
11am til 4pm

Sockets in offices -

Question: We have been told that the new regulations were brought in to remove ambiguity, but when carrying out ECIRs, we seem to have the same problem as before.

If an office installation has no RCD protection on the socket outlets (ground floor even), I have been told that with a risk assessment from the client saying they would not use the sockets to supply use outside the building, we could mark them a Code 3. My Health and Safety consultant, who is an electrical/mechanical engineer fully trained in H&S, dismisses that outright and says if somebody did use an extension lead outside and something went wrong, I would be in serious trouble for issuing a satisfactory report with a Code 3 rather than a Code 2 rating.

Who is right? It's either a Code 2 or a Code 3 - surely it can't be either? If so, it seems to me that we are back to the issues evident in the old 16th Edition!

Answer: You should refer to Regulation 411.3.3, which is quite specific. In an office environment, the socket-outlets within the office, and which are used to supply equipment such as PCs etc., and which are unlikely to supply portable equipment outdoors, may be under the supervision of a skilled or instructed person. They may not, therefore, require the additional protection of an RCD (see 411.3.3 (a)).

Where, within the premises, socket-outlets are for general purpose use by ordinary persons - such as within a kitchen - then of course 30mA RCD protection will be required.
If these socket-outlets are unlikely to supply portable equipment outdoors and no additional protection is provided, you should classify this as a Code 3.

Where mobile equipment having a current rating not exceeding 32A is used outdoors, then 30mA RCD protection will be required. However, this protection may be achieved by various means such as, for example, a dedicated 30mA RCD socket-outlet, or having socket-outlets likely to supply portable equipment outdoors protected by a 30mA RCD / RCBO. Note that a 30mA RCD adaptor or RCD plug could be used, but generally this is not recommended.

If no form of RCD protection is provided, then you should classify this as a Code 2.

businesses - please note - risk assessment saying "would not use the sockets to supply use outside the building"

Thursday, 16 May 2013

YOU are the key to saving energy

Buildings typically consume two to three times more energy than predicted at design stage, and this is often due to a failure to understand the person living there...

there is some interesting insight into why products can fail.

shows that a key to saving the planet is still educating people - energy saving lights save money, but not as much money as a light switched off when not in use

this is hampered as we are creatures of habit and a change in behaviour and reduce energy use is not an easy thing to implement

average Joe doesn't care about government carbon targets - it just doesn't seem real to us, its on the whole just hollow rhetoric.

Nissan turns over new Leaf - puntastic

ABOUT two years ago Nissan introduced the first mass-produced, fully electric car in the form of the Leaf. It was a flop, reaching less than half its expected sales. But the Japanese firm has high hopes for this second-generation version.

The new Leaf has had a physical, technical and pricing make-over based on negative feedback. This, in its own right, is quite something. Nissan developed the Leaf to be a “connected car”, which means that if customers gave their permission, Nissan could monitor the use of the early vehicles to improve future models.

One of the things Nissan discovered was, despite initial predictions that the Leaf would be a second car, many customers used it as their first car.

The new Leaf is less expensive, is available in three trim levels (rather than one) and the market is now slightly more accepting of electric cars.

The one part of the car that has seen almost no change is the styling of the body, save for some new alloy wheels, a new metallic grey colour and an aerodynamic front bumper. Instead the interior and the technology running the car have seen the attention of Nissan’s engineers.

The Leaf is powered by the same 109bhp electric motor as before but it has been made marginally more efficient. The batteries are the same but can be charged in four hours rather than eight.

The additional efficiencies in terms of a small weight reduction and an aerodynamic improvement, mean the 0 to 60mph time drops to 11.5 seconds from 11.9 although the top speed remains at 90mph.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Renault Gives Up on Israel’s Swappable Electric Car Batteries

The Israeli EV company Better Place hasn’t been having an easy ride. Despite nearly a billion dollars in investment Better Place has failed to really convince the Israeli public that a swappable electric battery is the way to go.

Its partner car and battery builder Renault have also lost the faith in Better Place – a company that once had missionary powers in the Israeli investment community: EV World is reporting that Renault has ditched future plans to make any new models for the swappable Better Place styled electric car, and will focus on fixed, rechargeable lithium batteries instead. The Fluence ZE model will still be an offering, but new buyers or leasers of the Better Place electric cars in Israel should not expect any new car model soon. (In my opinion the Fluence ZE is a boring way to show off a new concept car.)

The final nail in the coffin for Better Place?

“When you look at the overall trends, we must conclude that replaceable batteries are no longer the main track for electric vehicles. The main track is flat batteries in cars with charging. We believe that people want flexibility in the technology, and we can see that the demand is for rechargeable standard batteries,” said Carlos Ghosn the chairman of Renault.

Fisker Karma vs. Tesla Model S

Tuesday, 14 May 2013


According to the researchers, conventional street lamps - which use high-pressure sodium or mercury vapour - scatter up to 20% of their energy horizontally or vertically because it is difficult to control their beams.

It is easier to direct light from LEDs because it is being emitted from a smaller area.

So, while manufacturers controlled the direction of the light rays from older lamps using a reflector typically made out of polished aluminium, they can now take advantage of lenses to be more precise.
The researchers say the best LED (light-emitting diode) streetlamps on the market direct about 10% of their energy horizontally or vertically.

But they claim their own invention could further reduce the amount to just 2%.

Their proposed lamp uses three features to ensure the vast majority of its light is limited to a pre-determined rectangular shape covering the road:
Lighting graphic The new lamp aims to better limit the light rays to where they are of use
A special "total internal reflection" lens for each LED designed to focus its light's rays so that they travel parallel to each other in a single direction. This is rather than criss-crossing and diverging from each other causing many to spill beyond the target area.
A reflecting cavity into which the lens-covered LEDs are fitted. This helps "recycle" any light rays which fail to travel the desired path.

A diffuser through which the focused light passes to help tackle unwanted glare.
The researchers suggest that the set-up would also save on electricity costs since it should require between 10 and 50% less power to illuminate a section of road than current LED streetlamps.

China says no to electric cars

Despite choking pollution in big Chinese cities, the government faces the same obstacles as the U.S. in the push for electric vehicles: They're still expensive, many consumers don't understand them and many drivers don't have anywhere to charge the batteries.

Although China has offered tax incentives on electric vehicles in an effort to reduce the massive air pollution problem, there are few of the vehicles on the roads.

"I think everyone would say it hasn't really taken root yet," GM China President Bob Socia said last month near the Shanghai auto show. "Objectives are worthy, but progress is slow."

Automakers will have to persuade Chinese consumers to give electric vehicles a try. Experts once said that Chinese consumers would embrace electric vehicles because four out of five car buyers are purchasing a vehicle for the first time. They've never had an experience with internal combustion engine cars, so they won't know what they're missing, the thinking goes.

was that thinking was wrong?

Similarly, progress is slow in the U.S. The federal government offers tax credits of up to $7,500 for the purchase of an electric vehicle or semi-electric car, such as the Nissan Leaf or Chevrolet Volt. But most people are still buying conventional vehicles.

That means the door is still open for leaders to emerge in the electric vehicle space, as researchers pursue next-generation technologies amid a growing consensus that the current technology of lithium-ion batteries won't get much better or cheaper.

In 2012, the Chinese bought 12,791 hybrid and electric vehicles, according to the Chinese Association of Automobile Manufacturers.

But the real number of electric vehicles sold in China last year was actually about 3,000, when factoring out hybrids and vehicles that aren't roadworthy, such as golf carts, said Namrita Chow, a Shanghai-based analyst for IHS Automotive.

Monday, 13 May 2013

ABB to supply electrical, control systems for 75 MW solar PV plant in South Africa

ABB (Z├╝rich, Switzerland) has won a USD 25 million order to supply turnkey electrical and control systems for a 75 MW solar photovoltaic (PV) plant in South Africa's Northern Cape region.
The Kathu PV plant is owned by WBHO (Sandton, South Africa) and Building Energy (Italy), and was awarded during the first tranche of South Africa's Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Program. The plant is located in the Kalahari Desert near the town of Kathu and one of the largest open-pit iron ore mines in the world. 

“Renewable energy sources such as solar have a key role to play in meeting the growing demand for electricity while minimizing environmental impact,” said ABB Power Systems Division Head Brice Koch. “We have a strong track record in delivering turnkey power and automation solutions that are optimizing photovoltaic power plants all over the world.”

Solution to include tracking system

ABB says that its electrical and automation solution will optimize output at the plant while ensuring reliability in remote and demanding operating conditions.

The solution will include a range of ABB power products, including medium- and low-voltage switchgear, distribution transformers and control and protection devices. The system will include distribution automation and control products from its Symphony Plus line.

ABB will be responsible for design, engineering, supply, installation and commissioning of the system. ABB will additionally supply an advanced tracking system with a back-tracking algorithm that optimizes tracker movement and eliminates shadow on the PV modules.

Finally, the solution will include a data-collection system that collects operational input from the trackers, inverters, string boxes and substation to enable remote operations and maintenance, which it notes will alleviate the need for on-site personnel.


stay safe vid for kids

Should a community decorative tree’s lights be fed via RCD at 230V?

Question: Can you advise whether it is acceptable to have a community decorative tree's lights fed via an RCD at 230V?

Answer: Additional protection via a suitably rated RCD will be required.

However, if the public can make contact with the lamps, it would be beneficial if the voltage could be reduced to a safe level. If not, some sort of barrier would be a good idea.

Sunday, 12 May 2013

Hiriko folding electric car - video

Choosing an energy-efficient TV

Now you can buy A-rated TVs too

Energy consumption matters, not only does it make a difference to our energy bills, it affects the environment too.

Choosing the right TV, although fun, can be quite daunting. Finding the perfect screen size, sharpest picture or best audio can take up a lot of time. Combine all this with trying to choose a TV that's energy efficient and it can all become a bit confusing.

That's probably why many of us don't spend long thinking about how much energy our new TV needs to run. So, we've taken the guesswork out of energy ratings and power consumption with this handy guide - letting you make an energy-smart decision every time.
Easy as A, B, C…

TVs will now carry 'A to G' labels that rate their energy efficiency - just like those already seen on fridges and dishwashers. A-rated TVs or B-rated sets use less energy than similar televisions with a D rating. Some sets even have A+ ratings.

Choosing the right screen size
Naturally, TVs with larger screen sizes tend to use more energy, so the rating system puts them in order of efficiency to size. This means that an A rated 60" TV could actually cost more to run than a smaller B rated 42" TV (see table below). If saving energy is the most important thing to you, then choosing a smaller TV can be just as important as choosing one with a good energy rating.

Typical television running costs of energy efficiency rating by screen size

Running costs assume the TV is on for 1,742 hrs a year and in standby mode for 4,211 hours with a standby consumption of 0.4 watts with an electricity tariff of 14.51p / kWh.

Saturday, 11 May 2013

Home entertainment

Televisions, set-top boxes, digital TV recorders, DVDs and DAB radios combined are responsible for around a fifth of a typical home's electricity bill. Choosing the most efficient models helps to keep your energy bills down, so you save money and do your bit for the environment.

Digital radios or DAB (Digital Audio Broadcasting) radios have been one of the biggest-selling consumer electronic products in the last few years – with superior sound quality, a wide range of extra channels and rapidly falling prices. Digital radios generally consume more power than their analogue equivalents. Intertek testing for Which? 2006 showed an average digital radio to have a standby consumption of around 5 watts, which is around five times higher than analogue models. But the technology is rapidly improving, and digital radios carrying the Energy Saving Trust Recommended logo use around 75% less electricity annually than older digital radios.

Digital television recorders: Recording your favourite shows doesn’t have to cost more in energy bills. In most homes, entertainment equipment accounts for about 20% of your electricity bill. Energy Saving Trust Recommended digital television recorders must meet strict energy performance criteria.
Televisions can be the most power-hungry of all entertainment appliances, particularly the larger ones. The larger a television is the more energy it will consume, regardless of its energy rating. For instance, an A-rated  22" LCD TV would typically cost £6 a year to run whereas an A-rated 56" TV would cost £31. Choosing a smaller TV generally means choosing a more efficient TV. While it's tempting to go for a larger screen, larger screens show up the imperfections of non-high-definition TV signals and make it easier to notice the blockiness of images from DVD and blu-ray videos. So you might get a better viewing experience with a smaller TV. Look for the Energy Saving Trust Recommended label to get one of the most efficient available TVs of its category.

•HD and 3D TV: Many homes now have cable HD TV and most televisions on the market nowadays are HD ready. HD TVs have more pixels per square inch of screen area and therefore tend to consume more energy than SD (Standard Density) televisions. Buying a smaller SD TV is likely to use less energy than an HD TV, but with the move towards HD broadcasting you might wish to consider how long into the future you are happy to continue using an SD TV.

•LED, LCD and plasma screen are most common forms of flat-screen TVs on the market. LED and LCD TVs are not as good for seeing the screen from sideward angles, but otherwise there is little difference between the picture quality of these and plasma screen TVs. However, plasma screen TVs tend not to come in smaller sizes, and generally use more energy than similar sized LED or LCD TVs.

Simple set-top boxes turn your TV digital. An Energy Saving Trust Recommended simple set-top box must be efficient in both 'on' and standby mode. The label is your guarantee that you're buying a simple set-top box that uses less energy. As it's a product you'll use frequently, it's well worth your while to look for the label and get the most energy-efficient model.

Energy-saving plugs and sockets come in a number of forms; they can come with timers or a single off switch. You can plug televisions and computing equipment into them to reduce standby power and make it easier for you to switch everything off with a single switch. On average a UK home spends between £50 - £90 a year powering electronic goods left in standby. You can save on your energy bills by ensuring that you turn this equipment off at the plug after when it is not being used.

Friday, 10 May 2013


Homeowners attempting to have a go at DIY are being urged to think again after an over-enthusiastic householder botched a job which knocked £20,000 off the value of his neighbours’ homes and left his own property derelict.

NICEIC, the UK’s leading regulatory body for the electrical contracting industry, is reminding homeowners that most electrical work carried out in the home still needs to meet the requirements of building regulations.

However, research carried out by NICEIC shows that nearly two-thirds (63%) of homeowners would happily have a go at home improvements themselves rather than employ a qualified electrician.
Worse still, the survey also showed that only 22% of UK consumers have actually heard of Part P of the Building Regulations.

Tony Cable at NICEIC said: “People are far too casual about electrics in the home, especially in the current economic climate when it is tempting to try to save a few pennies where possible.
“What many fail to realise is that by attempting to do DIY electrics they could be putting their family’s lives at risk. Also, without the right electrical safety certificates, they may face difficulty when it comes to selling their home.”

If a homeowner is determined to have a go themselves, the work must be notified to a local authority building control department who can inspect the finished job. Either way a certificate will be presented to confirm the work is safe.

With around 12,500 house fires, 750 serious injuries and 10 deaths caused by unsafe electrics in the home each year, this laidback attitude to electrical work presents a major cause for concern. In particular, installing electrical appliances outdoors is even more hazardous because of the presence of water and damp conditions.

Homeowners can find qualified electricians in their area at - guess what! we are listed :)

Time lapse of an LED upgrade

Thursday, 9 May 2013

Aragon and MacIntyre Family Open Day 2013

come and see us at Aragon and MacIntyre Family Open Day 2013

 Join in the fun!!

Flitwick Leisure Centre
Saturday 18th May 2013
11am til 4pm

put it in your dairy

book your free tickets fast.

For further details contact:
Steve Nash - Community Development Officer
01525 844511

Sprinklers in care homes

Independent fire safety experts Safety Management UK are the latest to put pressure on government ministers to make fire sprinklers law in care homes, having written to Communities Secretary Eric Pickles.

The British Automatic Fire Sprinkler Association’s (BAFSA) campaign has seen growing momentum in the last few years, voicing a powerful argument for modern sprinkler systems that have no known safety issues and are found to control 99 per cent of fires in sprinkler-controlled buildings.

The tragic deaths of fourteen residents at Rosepark care home, in South Lanarkshire, in 2004, provided a powerful argument for the installation of sprinklers, especially after the results of 141 days of evidence were published in 2011, as do the conclusions of the recently published verdict into the 2009 Lanakal House fire, in Southwark, where six people lost their lives.

this smacks of a hollow press release.

in an ideal world all care homes should have sprinkler system, but with recent financial failures of large organisations and social care providers / housing association under pressure to cut back there has to be other priorities. firstly being a well maintained fire detection system and an up to date risk assessment.

the cost of a sprinkler system and its related on-going maintenance as a retrofit in an old building is considerably more expensive than a new install, and then you still have facilities management issues.

if you look in America, the sprinkler system is promoted to the building owner to save the building, the occupants are in many cases secondary as their protection is provided by the detection system and evacuation policy...

Fake goods

The rampant trade in counterfeit electrical products shows no sign of stopping but can industry slow the flow of fakes from East to West?

we doubt it...

Wednesday, 8 May 2013

LEDs ‘damage brain’ - Uh oh!!!

Altrincham / Trafford local authority is to delay the introduction of some 26,000 LED street lights – after a protestor claimed they would ‘damage the brains’ of local residents and that they were an ‘untried and untested’ technology.

The £8 million roll-out of the luminaires in Altrincham, Cheshire, was halted by Trafford council after protest leader Simon Nicholas claimed the light from the LEDs could damage the brains of people living nearby.

Scientific research on LEDs has linked them to disrupted sleep patterns, alleges Nicholas, who says there is also a glare danger to drivers.

The protesters say the new luminaires are not in keeping with conservation areas and the heritage lamp-posts are unsuitable for LED light engines.

Trafford councillors were due to vote on the plans at a meeting – but the proposal was withdrawn until more research is conducted on the proposals to ensure their safety.

Birmingham and Bath councils have already been forced to ditch or delay the installation of LED street lights because residents said they 'looked like UFOs' – while Salford residents complained they were not bright enough when the lights were trialled in 2011.

so why is everyone so scared of this is untried, untested new technology?

I personally had a resident ask why we had carried out a lighting upgrade at Sandford Rise in Sandy (Beds)  - when I told him that the new system had built in emergency lighting and used 1/5 of electricity whilst giving more light and lessening light pollution than the defunct system, I was met with a shrug of the shoulders and "There was nothing wrong with the old lights"

unless to account for the mineral wiring system was failing, there we no emergency back up and the switching tech did not have an IP rating. obviously apart from that it was all fine.

we calculate we can help save 70 per cent on energy bills from the LED lights.

are you sceptical of LED? why?


From Wiring Matters

It is good to see John Madden calling for a British Standard for socket covers (letter in issue 45 of Wiring Matters; see also uk). Regulation is also the subject of an e-petition started by Trevor Ord and supported by FatallyFlawed.

Mr Madden raises a number of issues deserving further examination. He refers to the evidence he gave to the Fatal Accident Inquiry into the tragic death of Liam Boyle, killed as a result of having access to a cable with exposed conductors. The Sheriff’s determination in this case is online in the public domain, and is worth studying.

The idea that plug-in socket covers reliably prevent children from plugging in dangerous appliances is not based on research or fact, but on wishful thinking.

A BS 1363 plug is secured in a socket solely by force exerted on the pins by the socket contacts. The only way that a  cover can legitimately be made difficult to remove is to ensure that it is impossible to grip it.

Shannah is Employee of the month

Employee of the Month April 2013

In a team meeting this morning Shannah Sherman was voted Employee of the Month
well done Shannah :)
doesn't she look happy?

Tuesday, 7 May 2013

Does technology hinder or help toddlers'

Elise, my (nearly) three year old regularly uses an ipad and knows her way round my phone.

she watches video on the iplayer and can Skype her nan in Romania.

she gets iPad time because I don't want her to behind her piers when she gets to pre school / school.

I grew up in a house where the TV remote was off limits (when I was 3) but Elise has an uncanny knack of knowing how to master new tech.

From smart phones, tablet and the WiiU, Elise 'swipes' all with confidence

It appears that screens can be beneficial to learning - and the more interactive the experience the better.

Research from the University of Wisconsin, presented at a meeting of the Society for Research in Child Development this week, found that children aged between two and three were more likely to respond to video screens that prompted children to touch them than to a video screen that demanded no interaction.

The more interactive the screen, the more real it was, and the more familiar it felt from a two-year-old's perspective, the study suggested.

Heather Kirkorian, assistant professor in human development and family studies, carried out the research and says touch screens could hold educational potential for toddlers.

When she did another test on word learning, the results were repeated.

"Kids who are interacting with the screen get better much faster, make fewer mistakes and learn faster.

"But we're not turning them into geniuses, just helping them get a little more information."
Helpful tools

So breathe more easily parents, your toddler is just doing what comes naturally and interacting with the world.

In any case, technology, in the form of phones and tablets, is here to stay. Many primary schools and some pre-schools have introduced iPads into the classroom to facilitate learning. Technology, understanding how things work, and ICT are part of the curriculum.

"I'm not one of those people who think we shouldn't expose children to mobiles, tablets etc," says Helen Moylett, president of Early Education, a charity that aims to improve teaching practice and quality for the under-fives.

"They can be really helpful and interesting tools if used in the right place to help us learn - and not all the time, or instead of other things."

However, her main concern is that parents are not always good role models.

Toddler playing "I'll just do this headstand, then I'll go and play on mummy's phone"

"I see parents texting while they walk. Often they are so plugged into their device that it becomes a barrier to communication with their child."

A recent study from Stirling University's school of education found that the family's attitude to technology at home was an important factor in influencing a child's relationship with it.

It concluded: "The experiences of three to five-year-olds are mediated by each family's distinct sociocultural context and each child's preferences.

"The technology did not dominate or drive the children's experiences; rather their desires and their family culture shaped their forms of engagement."

Christine Stephen, study author and research fellow at Stirling, says most parents understand the dangers of addiction and passivity, and set up rules on screen time to make sure that children do a wide range of indoor and outdoor activities.

other experts in the field disagree - Psychologist Dr Aric Sigman has regularly said that children are watching more screen media than ever, and that this habit should be curbed because it could lead to addiction or depression.

He calculates that children born today will have spent a full year glued to screens by the time they reach the age of seven. - but a TV isn't interactive, its all one way,

despite cries of poverty, IT is high up on the family adjenda - only 9% of UK children do not have access to a computer at home or school, as studies suggest

The key must be for children to use their time in front of them to best advantage by downloading the best apps and the right software to aid their learning.

Jackie Marsh, professor of education at the University of Sheffield, says there needs to be more research done in this area.
"We are going to outline what we feel should be the principles for good apps because there is a lack of a central resource for teachers.

"It's not just a case of giving them the iPad," she says.

"It's finding the right quality of apps that's important."

quality programs and particular software can help children with learning difficulties develop the skills they are lacking.

Online environments can also provide children with a virtual space to develop in confidence - something they might not be able to do in the home or the classroom, she says.

Her message to parents is that two hours of screen time each day is enough for children aged six and under. I limit Elise to 30 minutes.

Although there is a minority who consider screens not to be healthy, there is no evidence to suggest they are detrimental, Prof Marsh adds.

Children quickly get bored with one type of media, research suggests, and tend to combine screen time with playing with toys and running around in circles outdoors.

"We can get in a terrible panic about this, but toddlers are very curious and savvy," Ms Moylett says.
"Children are going to be exposed to all sorts of things."

Perhaps, in the end, they just want to enjoy technology the way adults do.

there you have it, its up to you now!!!

Monday, 6 May 2013

Can I use a plug/socket in place of an isolator for maintenance?


BS EN 60309-1 covers, I think, interlocked switches. Is there a difference between isolation and switching off for mechanical maintenance?

I found the above confusing, so there must be something I missed…

Answer: The table does not give an indication for switching off for mechanical maintenance, which is a different concept to isolation. Isolation is the removal of electrical energy to reduce a shock risk when switching for mechanical maintenance, as it states, and live conductors may still be present.

A plug and socket outlet would normally achieve both functions.

from Voltim.

Sunday, 5 May 2013

Google Glass (off topic) will make DuckFace worse...

Now that Google Glass is here in the hands of the first brigade of tech-savvy Silicon Valley-types, are we about to trade in our always-connected devices to always-sharing ones? And what does this mean for us & photography?

No doubt, in the process, we will be subject to mountains upon mountains of self-indulgent photography via services like Instagram, Facebook and Twitter.

So before we all get it, Please please please STOP doing DuckFace (even if you think it’s kissyface)
Facebookers, Facebookettes, please please please stop the DuckFace.

You know who you are... it’s that face you make when you're about to take that perfect picture of yourself for the internet? Usually in the mirror because you know that if a friend saw you make that face IRL, they would laugh sooo much they couldn’t take the snap...

Duckface was originally a concept by Derek Zoolander derived from Blue Steel in 2001

Let’s get some perspective here.. you think that when you do that pose where you push your mouth out in that sort of weird half-kissy-face to make it look like you've got big pouty lips, a super-defined jaw line, and model-quality cheekbones, that you look cool – NO

Try it in the pub; people will just laugh because, you know, it makes you look like a duck

Will Google Glass bring too many photos of lunches, outfits they bought, pouting self portraits and – infamously- their cats. (Sorry I am not a cat person!) I think it will

Gone are the days where an exposure meant paying for film and its development and thus the thorough consideration for each shot. The 24/7 news cycle allowed for media to adopt imagery from social media, valuing the ‘breaking news’-value more than the resolution. proper photography these days is confined to a few high end publications or the gallery it seems.

No more iPhone snap of your friend’s dinner on Pinterest.

The saturation of photography in social media and popular culture is making it boring, especially if it’s kissy face, duck face, spag bol, pussy cat... STOP

Rant over, have a great rest of your weekend – get you camera out...


Saturday, 4 May 2013

Norway shows the way with electric cars

Pure electric cars made up 3.0 percent of February car sales in Norway, with a population of 5 million, compared to fractions of one percent in most nations. In the United States, for instance, they made up just 0.1 percent of all car sales in 2012.

But the factors that have made the car sell in Norway show how hard it would be to make the proposition work anywhere else: the car can't go long distances and isn't economical unless the government kicks in hefty incentives like tax breaks, free road tolls and free parking.

Ironically, experts say, electric cars may not even be helping the environment.

"Norway's an oasis in a huge desert," said Peter Schmidt, editor of Automotive Industry Data Ltd. in England. "But it's an example can't be followed - it only works because Norway has a 'supertax' on normal cars."

State subsidies, intended to promote a less polluting form of travel and cut greenhouse gas emissions, help bring the price of buying the top-selling electric Nissan Leaf in Norway down to 240,690 crowns ($42,500), competitive with the 1.3-litre Volkswagen Golf at 238,000 crowns ($42,000).
But in Britain, for example, while the Leaf is cheaper at 23,490 pounds ($35,500), including a 5,000-pound government subsidy, the same Golf sounds a bargain at 16,285 pounds ($24,600).

Norway's center-left government says small nations can lead the way for others like the United States, which is the world's largest market for electric cars with 14,687 sold in 2012 but which has backed away from a goal of putting a million electric cars on the roads by 2015.

But its example shows the huge cost involved - one that only a country like Norway, which has escaped the global economic slowdown thanks to vast revenues from oil and gas, can afford.
Norway's tax breaks on the purchase for electric cars are worth almost $11,000, or $1,400 a year over a car's lifetime, according to a study by Statistics Norway analyst Bjart Holtsmark.

Commuters driving into Oslo from the surrounding areas save an annual $1,400 in road tolls, can get free parking worth $5,000 and avoid other charges of $400.

It all adds up to as much as $8,200 per car, per year, before taking account of the benefit of driving in the bus lane rather than sitting in a queue with other cars.

The incentive scheme is due to run until 2017, when it will be reviewed.

"This is a good introductory offer," said Norwegian Environment Minister Baard Vegar Solhjell.
"It's a way to spread ideas and it also creates a lot of interest among the car companies," he said.
With three young children, Solhjell can't find an electric car big enough for his family and drives a 7-seat Ford Galaxy, however.

Even some Norwegian electric car owners have misgivings about the state's largesse.
"The benefits are ... too good. You can take bus lanes, get free parking and it costs very little to refuel," said Ole Marius Lauritzen, 44, who lives 25 km (15 miles) outside Oslo and used to commute to his work at a bank by bus.

Like 40 percent of other Norwegian households with electric cars, Lauritzen's blue Think City car, made by a now-bankrupt Norwegian firm once owned by Ford, is his family's second car.

"It has to be the second car for the family, because it still has a limited range," especially in winter when the cold drains batteries, Lauritzen said as he recharged the vehicle for free in a snow-decked electric car park in central Oslo.

Oslo has 446 parking places with free recharging and the municipality plans to add 800 more at a cost of 59 million crowns ($10.33 million) over the next four years. Drivers can also recharge at home.
The range issue - many can only go about 100 miles or less without recharging - is a huge problem in countries like the United States, where long-distance driving is a way of life.

One U.S. study said 70 percent of drivers surveyed wanted driving ranges of 300 miles before they would consider buying an electric car despite federal tax breaks worth up to $7,500, in addition to state incentives.

By encouraging people who can afford it to buy a second car instead of taking buses and trains, the electric car scheme may ironically be aggravating environmental problems and causing traffic jams, analyst Holtsmark said.

Tesla Motors says its Model S car, due on sale in June, will be able to reach such ranges if driven correctly.

Experts say electrification with renewable energy is essential if rich nations are serious about goals of cutting greenhouse gas emissions by 80 percent by 2050 - transport now accounts for about a fifth of all greenhouse gas emissions.

European Union member states, for example, are aiming for at least 9 million electric vehicles by 2020, against less than 100,000 now. The group also wants 10 percent of transport in the EU to run on renewable fuels by 2020 - such as biofuels or 'green' electricity, up from 4.7 percent in 2010.
On this issue, Norway again stands head and shoulders above the rest - almost 100 percent of electricity is generated from clean hydropower, so a shift from gasoline and diesel cuts pollution.
But Norway is not the norm. Elsewhere, electric cars may cut pollution locally by eliminating exhaust but are often charged from electricity generated by high-polluting coal-fired power plants elsewhere.
In fact, in places like China, the requirements for electric cars just add to environmental problems.
Many Chinese power plants use coal with few filters, spewing out particulate matter - chemicals, acids and metals - that causes more pollution per km for electric cars than gasoline-powered cars, said Chris Cherry, an electric vehicle analyst at the University of Tennessee.

"In China, electric vehicles may worsen health effects compared to normal cars," said Cherry, who was lead author of a study published in February in the journal Environmental Science and Technology.

The policy also does not stack up in the market established to put some value on curbing greenhouse gas emissions.

Holtsmark estimates that a Toyota Prius hybrid emits 0.6 tonne of carbon dioxide a year against zero for a Leaf. Scaling up the Leaf's subsidies means Norway is paying $13,600 to avoid a tonne of emissions, a stratospherically expensive policy since the right to emit a tonne of carbon dioxide costs about 4 euros on the EU's carbon market.

Norway's enthusiasm notwithstanding, many carmakers acknowledge the all-electric market has not become as mainstream as they hoped when they gambled billions of dollars on the technology.
Carmakers are shifting from all-electric towards hybrids like the Prius, which has a gasoline engine backed up by an electric motor that traps energy when the brakes are applied.

"Demand for electric cars isn't where we thought it would be," Francois Bancon, Nissan's upstream development chief, said at the Geneva car show last week. "We're in a very uncertain phase, and everyone's a bit lost."

Electric car owners in Norway are already starting to worry about the long-term future of their investment.

"If the bus lane is closed the economic aspect of the car will be terrible," said Are Paulsrud, who drives a Mitsubishi electric car.

Kitchen appliances

Cookers are getting more efficient, and our recommended ovens have an 'A' energy rating so they are the most efficient of all; hobs that carry the logo are highly energy-efficient too. Switching your old cooker to an Energy Saving Trust Recommended model over the market average model could save you around £45 over its lifetime.

Microwave ovens are often a much more energy efficient way of cooking items than in the oven. This is because microwaves oven use energy to directly heat your food, whereas electric ovens must also heat the air inside the oven.

Dishwashers can take up a significant chunk of your electricity bill, costing on average around £47 a year to run. Over a year, it costs around £7 less to run an Energy Saving Trust Recommended dishwasher than it does an old, inefficient machine - and it will use less water.

Fridges, freezers and fridge-freezers are switched on 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, so it's well worth finding models that are energy efficient. Choosing a new Energy Saving Trust Recommended model over the market average will save you around £89 in energy bills and 390 kg of carbon dioxide over the lifetime of the product. Look for the right size and the logo. Energy Saving Trust Recommended refrigeration appliances must all have an A+ or A++ energy rating. However because the energy rating is based upon classification by size, a smaller A rated fridge could use less energy than a larger A+ rated fridge. You can compare the total energy consumption of appliances by looking for their yearly energy consumption in kWh / annum displayed on the bottom right of its energy label.

Kettles are one of the most commonly used appliances in the kitchen. The strict testing for Energy Saving Trust Recommended kettles requires them to use 20% less energy than the average product. On average a UK household boils the kettle 1,500 times a year.

Tumble dryers: Drying clothes outdoors on a washing line or indoors on a rack costs nothing and uses no energy so it is the ideal way to dry your clothes. But if you need to use a tumble dryer, they use a great deal of energy, so choose one with the Energy Saving Trust Recommended label and it will cost less to run, helping you to reduce your energy bill. Choose one that has a sensor that tells when your clothes are dry enough, preventing your clothes from being over dried and the dryer running when it doesn’t need to.

•Gas tumble driers are one of the cheapest and most environmentally friendly type of drier to run. But this type of drier can be slightly more expensive to install as it needs a gas connection.
•Electric heat pump tumble driers are also very efficient as they recycle the heat from the ventilation tube back into the drier, but take away the water vapour from the air.

Washing machines: An energy efficient machine will save you money on to your electricity bill and, if you have a meter, your water bill too. All our recommended washing machines are rated the best in class for energy efficiency, spin efficiency and wash performance.

Friday, 3 May 2013

Friday funny

Have a great Bank Holiday

and if you do any DIY "Bang!!!" or call out number is here

Flat-screen TV electricity consumption falls by 60%

Along with patio heaters, SUVs and incandescent lightbulbs, flat-screen TVs became one of the products most loathed by environmentalists over the past decade. But improving energy efficiency means they have become greener than the hulking cathrode ray tubes they replaced, and cut their average electricity consumption by more than half, new figures show.

Technology advances have driven down the energy use of all new TVs by 60% since 2006, leaving a 42-inch LED TV today costing just £14 a year to run compared with around £80 for a plasma screen in 2006, in present day prices. Over 9.5m flat-screens were sold in the UK last year
Globally TVs account for about 6-8% of electricity consumption in homes.

Ross Lammas, the founder of energy efficiency site Sust-it, who compiled the data by looking at 1,800 models, said new lighting developments were largely responsible: "The main thing that's driving it is the LED technology to backlight the TV." "

So-called 'LED TVs', which use light-emitting diodes only began to appear in significant numbers around 2009, despite the technology debuting in a Sony TV five years earlier. As well as using less energy, the sets are thinner and are becoming increasingly popular with buyers, accounting for as much of a fifth of LCD TV sales according to some reports.

The research also shows that modern flat-screens now use less energy than the boxy TVs they were initially criticised for replacing. A new 32-inch LED TV uses about 75% less energy than a 32-inch cathode ray tube, costing £8 a year to run rather than £32.

Lammas also predicted that mandatory energy labels for TVs due to be introduced in December would lead to the decline of plasma-based screens, which use more energy. "Plasmas still use a hell of a lot of power. I think they [the consumer electronics companies] will start phasing them out soon. As soon as energy labels come in, people will see how much energy they actually use."

Which? magazine editor Martyn Hocking, said the figures tallied with its own research. "Flat-screen TVs are significantly more energy efficient these days. 40 inch TV's would often use up to 300 watts three years ago, but some now use as little as 70 watts. We're seeing similar results with other white goods, such as fridges, freezers and washing machines."

A spokesman with the government's Energy Saving Trust said energy consumption from TVs was expected to drop "considerably" with the increased take-up of LED TVs.

Thursday, 2 May 2013

New Van Livery

What a  fresh transformation, check out the new van livery, radical changes and a brand new logo, Woolgar Electrical is moving on..
sorry for the finger in the way - shoot the photographer

What do you think? Just be honest!

Woman blindly follows sat-nav through six countries

Sat nav's are like spell check, out need to know when to trust them

based on that simple ethos, check this out...

67-year-old Sabine Moreau originally planned to drive 38 miles to Solre-sur-Sambre in Belgium to pick up a friend from the station, the Daily Mail reports, but when her sat-nav decided to take the scenic route, she ended up some 900 miles away in Zagreb, Croatia.

Such was her faith in the sat-nav, she failed to realise she had driven through six countries with different languages on the road signs. She stopped multiple times to refuel and, incredibly, even parked up in a lay-by for a few hours to sleep. When asked whether the length of her journey seemed strange, Moreau said: "Maybe, but I was just preoccupied... I was a bit absent-minded as I had a few things to think about, I suppose."

Such was the length of the journey, Sabine's son had believed his mother was missing and a manhunt was about to begin, according to a spokesman for the Belgian police. Embarrassingly, Ms Moreau had to make the journey back from Croatia to Belgium, which took her total distance travelled to 1,800 miles - more than four times the distance between London and Edinburgh. The entire trip took a total of sixty hours.

It is not clear whether the sat-nav or Ms Moreau was to blame for the epic journey and if the woman's friend is still waiting for that lift. If he or she is reading this, we would suggest you hail a cab.
The moral of the story? As clever as modern-day technology can be, a bit of common sense goes along way.

Wednesday, 1 May 2013

Taking Over Tech in Your 4-Inch Heels

liking this piece by sabina zafar -

Women today continue to defy the stereotypical perception of having to look like Betty to be a geek, when in fact you can totally look like Veronica. (If you aren’t an Archie Comics geek like me, you won’t get that reference). The point is, image does not define who you are; your accomplishments define who you are. So if there are nights that you dream about code, or days when you get goose bumps reading about the latest gadget on Gizmodo, then walk proudly in your Louboutins and 4-inch heels as you embark on your journey to take over the technology world by storm!