Author: Creative Programs and Systems

Five Movies to Get Your Prepping and Survivalist Instincts in Gear

Survival movies can be gripping, heart-racing, suspenseful, and somewhat unrealistic. Nevertheless, Hollywood does offer a small window into survivalism and prepping. If even just for the fun of it, check out these movies and who knows, maybe you will get some tips or ideas for your own prepping needs.

127 Hours
Based on a true story, James Franco plays Aron Ralson, who goes out for a solo day hike in the Utah canyons. The premise focuses on his fight for survival after getting into an accident that traps him against a boulder.

Cast Away
This classic film from 2000 is well-loved and features Tom Hanks who plays Chuck Noland, a FedEx employee who is stranded on a deserted island after a plane crash. Real-life survival skills are utilized to help him get through the harrowing incident.

Contagion
Eerily mirroring the events related to COVID-19 (disease spreads from a bat in China then spreads rapidly), it stars Matt Damon, Gwyneth Paltrow, Jude Law, Kate Winslet, and Steven Soderbergh. Food shortages, looting, government missteps, and worldwide circumstances we’re all-too-familiar with after 2020.

I Am Legend
Will Smith plays Robert Neville, who learns how to live in a post-apocalyptic world full of zombies with his trusty dog Sam by his side. New York is in pure disarray after a cure for cancer kills 90 percent of the population. Only one percent of humans survive, and the other nine percent turn into zombies.  

The Road
An ailing father played by Viggo Mortensen defends his son as they slowly travel to the sea while finding food, shelter, and avoiding the last remaining humans in a post-apocalyptic world.

After you binge these prepper and survivalist movies, check out the massive stock at Wolf Survival Gear to obtain all of the tools, gear, and supplies you’ll ever need in case disaster strikes.

Wolf Survival Gear is a hub for all of your prepping and survival needs. We are a trusted resource for concerned families, avid hunters, or serious preppers. Make us your one-stop-shop and prepare now, before you’ll need it later. Visit our website or e-mail us today for more information.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Common Questions and Answers about Lasik Surgery

Lasik (an acronym for laser in situ keratomileusis) surgery is a common household name regarding vision improvement. Approved by the Federal Department of Agriculture (FDA) roughly 20 years ago, it is not for everyone, nor does it fix every vision problem. More than 19 million Lasik procedures have been performed in the United States, and more than 45 FDA approvals have been implemented. Read on to discover some typical questions and answers associated with the surgery.

What is the basic premise of Lasik surgery? Lasik is a two-step procedure. In the first step, a micro-thin circular flap is made on the eye’s surface, known as the cornea. After the few-second process, the surgeon gently lifts the flap to expose where the vision correction treatment will happen. In the second step, a computer-glided excimer laser permanently removes the microscopic pieces of tissue causing vision problems. The flap is laid back in place and protects the reshaped cornea until it heals.

What about the lasers? Lasik does involve the use of precise lasers, which are incredibly important due to the intricate area affected. Lasers can be used safely without damaging the surrounding tissues.

Is it painful? Thanks to numbing and lubricating drops, Lasik surgery is basically painless. Patients sometimes feel pressure from the eyelid holder, used to prevent blinking. Some mild discomfort can result after surgery, which will last roughly five hours.

Are you awake? Yes, people who undergo Lasik are given a sedative to keep them calm. Moreover, if your eyes move, the laser automatically tracks it, shutting off in case of a sneeze or sudden movement.

Is the procedure safe? Lasik is an elective procedure, with more than 7,000 clinical studies conducted and published to support its safety and effectiveness. One of the highest scores out of any elective procedure, Lasik rates at a stunning 96 percent patient satisfaction. One reason for the high satisfaction is due to the fact that many patients have better vision after Lasik than they did with their best glasses before surgery. With more than 40 million procedures performed worldwide, blindness has never resulted in healthy candidates.

What are the side effects? During the healing period, the patient’s eyes might feel dry, light-sensitive, or irritated. Night vision issues such as glare, halos, ghosting, starbursts, and dry eye might occur. These issues typically resolve themselves, and some people might require additional eye drops to reduce inflammation or dry eyes. Less than five percent of the time, in rare cases, further treatment might be necessary to readdress residual vision problems.

For more information regarding Lasik surgery or to schedule an appointment, contact Rohr Eye & Laser Center today.

Rohr Eye & Laser Center offers the most advanced technology available to provide personalized and extraordinary care to our patients. Whether your goal is to maintain or improve your natural vision, we are here to help you. Call us at 877-579-0202 or visit https://www.michiganlasik.com/ to schedule an appointment today.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

New Water Flow Regulations Proposed in the U.S. for Showerheads, Dishwashers, & Washing Machines

Regulations on water usage have been implemented for decades due to droughts and energy efficiency (using fewer fossil fuels) in an effort to lower overall consumer costs. Higher usage drives prices up, which in turn causes non-renewable resources to diminish through time.

Since 1992, federal law has stipulated the amount of water pouring out of showerheads in one minute should be no more than 2.5 gallons. In 2013, newer shower fittings with multiple nozzles caused the Obama administration to define the restrictions and apply the 2.5-gallon rule to the entire fixture. Therefore, if a showerhead is comprised of four nozzles, no more than 2.5 gallons (total) should exit the nozzles within one minute.  

A new proposal enacted by the Trump administration would allow each nozzle to spray as much as 2.5 gallons, which could amount to five gallons of total water being spewed out per minute if two showerhead nozzles are installed. Multiply that by four or five, and showerheads could be pushing out 10 to 15 gallons per minute, costing consumers hundreds of dollars in usage bills.

The 28-year-old law was partially implemented due to the megadrought the western states have been experiencing for two decades. University of Michigan environmentalist Dean Jonathan Overpeck said, “[It is] the first observed multidecadal megadrought in recorded U.S. history.”

Additionally, the Trump administration has advanced easier dishwasher regulations that exempt fast-cleaning machines from decades-old rules. The Department of Energy created a separate product class for dishwashers with a short cycle, classifying them as the “normal” cycle, with no limit on energy or water use.

Over the past three decades, dishwasher water and energy use have declined by more than 50 percent due to federal standards and manufacturer innovations. The first energy-efficient standard for dishwashers was set in 1987 by Congress. It was updated three times since then, most recently in 2012 by the Department of Energy.

A third proposal by the U.S. Department of Energy would allow new clothes washers and dryers to waste unlimited amounts of water and energy. The current efficiency standards for washing machines were set in 2012 and save consumers roughly $365 over an appliance’s lifetime, with utility bills and purchase costs factored in.

The Department of Energy is prevented by federal law from weakening the efficiency standards. Still, the proposed new rule would dodge that regulation by creating a separate “product class” for machines using a short cycle, and renaming it their “normal” cycle, much like the proposal for dishwashers. No energy efficiency or water use standard would be implemented at first, as these developments take years. Many new washing machines come with a short cycle option.

The American Council for an Energy- Efficient Economy (ACEEE) reported that an analysis of performance, features, and price efficiency has improved since the standards were implemented. Simultaneously, product prices have decreased, meaning a better overall return on investment with these machines.

Clean water is vital for showering, laundry, and washing dishes. Ensure your water is chemical and rust-free with a consultation from the experts at Reynolds Water Conditioning.

Reynolds Water Conditioning was established in 1931 and is Michigan’s oldest water conditioning treatment company. Still owned and operated by the Reynolds family, we take pride in providing the highest quality products at a cost-effective price. If your tap water lacks the quality you deserve, contact us today at www.reynoldswater.com or call 800-572-9575.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Winter Pool Maintenance

Maintaining your pool during the winter is important so that you may gain the full enjoyment of its pleasures during the peak-season. Taking care of your pool throughout the off-season will not only save you money but prevents any damage due to freezing temperatures or contaminated water. Preserve your investment and protect your swimming pool from winter damage. After properly winterizing your pool, make these steps part of your routine to keep it in tip-top shape.

Pool covers are necessary to protect them from snow, debris, insects, and animals. To keep your pool cover in working order:

  • Ensure your cover is securely attached and insulated: inflate the air pillow, tighten the cable, secure cover clips, make sure water blocks/bags are secured, etc.
  • Remove debris and water from the pool cover. Plant debris, leaves, and twigs can be removed with a hose. Use a vacuum to remove any excess water.
  • Be sure to remove snow using rakes to pull or push snow off of the pool cover. Any extra weight can cause damage, especially to above-ground pools. The best option is to remove snow while it’s still fresh and hasn’t frozen to the cover.

Pool parts are quickly forgotten as they are tucked out of sight in the off-season. All parts need periodic maintenance to keep them running efficiently, no matter the geographical location. To keep your pool parts like new:

  • Check your pool pump, filter, and heater periodically to verify they are in proper working order. These parts can be expensive down the road, so it’s best to catch any issues early before they get worse.
  • Ensure all excess water has been removed while analyzing your pool parts. Freezing water can expand in pipes, causing significant cracks and problems.

Winter pool chemistry is key to a clean swimming pool, as many people do not entirely drain them for the winter season. Balanced water prevents algae, bacteria, waterlines, and decontamination. It is worth balancing your pool chemistry during the winter months, helping make the opening process much more efficient. Potential health risks can be avoided by keeping a clean and decontaminated pool.

To properly maintain your pool water:

  • When not in use, check your pool chemistry every two months. Algae and bacterial growth can occur if the pool water is not balanced.
  • All pool chemicals from the previous season should be discarded, as they lose their potency.
  • Enzyme products help break down non-living contaminates and prevent water rings from forming. When you open your pool in the spring, you won’t need to scrub your pool tile or finish.

Freeze alerts are essential to pay attention to, as leaks in pool liners or cracked pipes can be invisible during the winter months but become obvious in the spring. To save you from any potential damage:

  • Consider purchasing a digital thermometer sensor to notify you of dangerous temperatures.
  • Set weather alerts on your phone to be ready for the next freeze.

Taking the initiative and protecting your pool during the winter can save you time and money in the spring. For assistance with winter pool maintenance, contact the experts at Pound Pool Plastering today.

Pound Pool Plastering offers free estimates and complete pool renovations. Dale Pound, owner, personally oversees each pool project to ensure the highest quality is delivered. We offer Diamond Brite, Sunstone, Hydrazzo, Marcite, Pebble finishes, Bead Crete, tile choices, coping stones, etc. We are pool renovation experts – contact us today at 248-476-4544 or poundpool@sbcglobal.net.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

New Medicare Coverage? Put It to Good Use in 2021!

If you have new Medicare coverage, now is a great time to learn about your revised benefits and see how they can work best for you. Check out your basic costs to learn about tests covered under Medicare, items, and other services to see whether they have changed. For cost-specific information, create a Medicare account.

Medicare can assist you in taking better care of yourself this year through preventative services such as yearly wellness visits and screenings for breast cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. Most of these services are free for beneficiaries and are vital to maintaining your overall health. By targeting issues early, these programs help keep you from getting sick and slow disease progression.

To discuss preventative services, contact your doctor, who will also tell you the best time to schedule them. Understanding your coverage and taking advantage of these preventive services is an excellent way to jump-start 2021. Before you leap, be confident in your plan choice. If you have questions, contact your Medicare provider, who can help answer questions and ensure that you are getting the most out of your benefits.  

For more information about Medicare or to schedule an appointment with a specialist who can guide you through the process, contact Senior Health Medicare today.

Senior Health Medicare is a superior resource for Medicare guidance, information, and ongoing client support. Selecting a Medicare plan is not a flippant decision. It requires annual revisiting and re-evaluating in order for the client to stay in the most cost-effective coverage. Senior Health Medicare is here to serve as your resource through all the years to come. Contact us today at 888-404-5049 or visit us on the web at www.seniorhealthmedicare.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

How Leaders Gain Followers in Business

All leaders have at least one follower, yet today’s leadership industry is built on the idea that leaders are superior to followers. This outdated thinking encompasses professionals in the military, business, family, and other relationships. People can browse courses, flip through books, attend workshops, and scan articles for information regarding leadership. From crooks to retired five-star generals, many people are curious as to how they gained success in their endeavors and popularity among their peers. 

Followership, those who choose their leaders carefully, are blatantly ignored as the topic of books, articles, and workshops. Limited research and articles regarding subordinates focus on their behavior in the context of leadership development as opposed to followers’…and oftentimes mistakenly assume followers are amorphous. For these reasons, deeply devoted followers are intertwined and categorized with those who loosely and mindlessly tag along.

To be an effective leader, it is imperative to pay attention to your followers. Know the difference between wants and needs, delivering both at your discretion. Moreover, it is always a good idea to incorporate the following strategies into your daily interactions.

Integrity: Keep your intentions pure and actions transparent. This opens a window for your followers to see your true objectives. Integrity is the choice between convenience and what’s right. Remind yourself and ask internally how your actions will be reflected to others.

Trust: Followers want to know, with complete absolution, that leaders are working for their best interest. Gaining complete trust allows leaders to unlock the potential within followers. With trust, you can achieve motivation and unification while acting as a guide with rationale. By elevating your team, they will work more efficiently, which lets you focus on other things.

Influence: To gain the ever-important trust, you must first use your position to transfer your ideas into the hearts of your followers. Messages are important, but deliveries are even more effective. Influence leads to trust and encompasses integrity; it’s not just about what you say, it’s about what you actually do. Leaders can influence by example and those who stand out influence by showing their actions always equal their words.

Omega Benefit Strategies provides senior credit union members an educational resource for Medicare. Our turnkey marketing package seamlessly integrates with existing market strategies. We can help businesses increase new member acquisitions, bolster retention, cross-sell opportunities via our “scorecard” system, and even earn an ancillary revenue stream. Accommodating any size membership, we maintain exemplary member service and offer top-notch products. Contact us today by going to www.omegabenefitstrategies.com or call 888-404-5049.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Electric Vehicle Industry Anticipates Rapid Growth

During a recent virtual event, the Electric Power Research Institute (EPRI) announced a “Coming Wave of Electric Vehicles” and projected electric vehicles (EV) will comprise 40 percent of new car purchases by 2030. Factors such as rapid reductions in purchase price in addition to a wide variety of cost-competitive, high-performance, and lower carbon-emission models than typical vehicles are responsible for elevated consumer interest. Moreover, numerous communities and companies pledged to switch to electric alternatives for buses, vans, delivery vehicles, work trucks, and other ridesharing automobiles.

Economies aimed at decarbonization have implemented EVs as strategic tools in the overall effort. With the rising consumer interest, new demands will be placed on electric utilities and aging infrastructure. Increased research and development will be instrumental for proper execution.

BloombergNEF New York published the Electrical Vehicle Outlook 2020, which predicted EVs will hit 10 percent of global passenger vehicle sales by 2025, rising to 28 percent in 2030 and 58 percent in 2040. “Passenger EV sales jumped from 450,000 in 2015 to 2.1 million in 2019. They will drop in 2020 before continuing to rise as battery prices fall, energy density improves, more charging infrastructure is built, and sales spread to new markets,” according to the site.

Some of the factors driving the EV market include better technology, regulatory policies, and lower lithium-ion battery prices, which fell a whopping 87 percent from 2010 to 2019. In terms of regulations, 13 countries and 31 cities/regions have pledged to lower or phase out classic vehicle sales over time.

Infrastructure needs for EVs will rise, as predicted by Bloomberg NEF. By 2040, roughly 290 million charging points will be required worldwide to support the growing EV market. Charging hardware and installation costs will reach $500 billion globally by 2040.

J&P Electrical is a full-service electrical equipment company. At J&P, we supply contractors, end-users, and supply houses with new surplus, quality reconditioned, and obsolete electrical equipment. We also purchase a wide range of electrical equipment such as bus plugs, ducts, panel switches, substations, and transformers. Call us at 877-844-5514 or visit us at https://www.jpelectricalcompany.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Quantum Teleportation Achieves 90% Accuracy Over 27 Miles

Today’s internet is a hacker’s dream: from vulnerable communication links and incompetently secured cloud data, weaknesses are everywhere. Quantum physicists are looking to construct quantum networks in substantial full-blown glory where information is created, stored, and moved around in ways hackers could never replicate or trace. If implemented, these networks could rise to fruition with an extremely high level of privacy, security, and computational power.

These networks might be a distant vision, but recent breakthroughs in transmitting, storing, and manipulating quantum information have convinced some physicists that a quantum internet is closer to reality than initially speculated.

A lightning-speed, completely secure internet is possible. Scientists recently teleported high-fidelity (over 90 percent accuracy) quantum information over 27 miles.

Dr. Panagiotis Spentzouris, a physicist from Caltech’s Fermilab particle physics and accelerator laboratory, was pleased with the results, “This is a key achievement on the way to building a technology that will redefine how we conduct global communication,” he said.

Qubits are unmeasured particles that remain suspended in a blend of possible states. Similar to spinning dice, qubits are full of possibilities. When dice land on any number, they are both guaranteed to add to seven no matter the distance. Much like dice, qubits that are introduced to each other are connected (quantum entanglement) in ways that become obvious once they are measured. This data is reflected from one location to the next.

The science of quantum entanglement and data teleportation is intricate and complex. Even experts aren’t sure how the technology would work in a quantum network. Each proof-of-concept positions scientists one step closer toward creating such a network. The most recent teleportation brings a city-sized quantum network closer to reality as it has never before been demonstrated with such accuracy over a long distance. Years of work remain ahead to create the vision, but the results are promising.

Quantum internet would provide large increases in speed, computational power, and security. Hacking attempts would be futile. Researchers believe quantum internet networks will be unique extensions to today’s classic rather than a comprehensive replacement.

For more information, check out the journal article published in PRX Quantum.

Founded in 1994, Creative Programs and Systems provides professional results for all computer needs. We design, create, and code an array of custom software programs and websites; implement internet marketing strategies for enhanced Search Engine Optimization (SEO) results; repair and provide support for computers of both residential and professional nature; build custom systems and servers, and offer secure data backups. Need assistance or want to learn more? Call us at 810-224-5252 or e-mail info@cpsmi.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

Brain Scans Can Predict Music-Induced Emotions

In Finland at the University of Turku, researchers in the national PET Centre recently discovered neural mechanisms that arise as an emotional response to music. Subjects who participated in the study (102) listened to emotion-evoking music while undergoing functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI).

To map which brain regions are activated based on different music-inducing emotions, researchers created a machine-learning algorithm. Postdoctoral Researcher Vesa Putkinen said, “Based on the activation of the auditory and motor cortex, we were able to accurately predict whether the research subject was listening to happy or sad music. The auditory cortex process the acoustic elements of music, such as rhythm and melody.  Activation of the motor cortex, then again, may be related to the fact that music inspires feelings of movement in the listeners even when they are listening to music while holding still in an MRI machine.”

Specific brain regions are activated when humans watch videos that evoke strong emotions. This was better discerned by the researchers who tested whether the same areas were activated while listening to music that evokes emotions. The results indicate that emotions evoked by film and sounds are based on different brain synapses.

Real-life situations are mimicked in films, which activate the deeper parts of the brain that regulate emotions. These regions were not strongly activated while listening to music, nor did it separate the music-induced emotions from one another. Researchers hypothesize this difference stems from the fact that films are more realistic in portraying real-life events that evoke emotions and brain synapses; cultural influences and personal history impact music-induced emotions based on music’s acoustic characteristics.  

In the past, music-induced emotions have been studied through classical instrumental music. Putkinen stated, “We wanted to use only instrumental music in this study as well, so that lyrics did not impact the emotions of the research subjects. However, we included film music and songs by the guitar virtuoso Yngwie J. Malmsteen.”

Click here to see a video showing how brains reacted while listening to the song “Far Beyond the Sun,” performed by Yngwie J. Malmsteen, which was used in the study. For further reading, check out the original press release from the University of Turku, published in the Cerebral Cortex Journal. To participate in their latest experiment called, “Music-Induced Emotions           in the Body,” check out Onni.  

Acceletronics is an industry leader in delivering the best equipment performance and service reliability from CT Scanners and Linear Accelerators across all major brands and models. Call 610-524-3300 or visit our website: https://www.acceletronics.com.

Witten by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.

RIP Adobe Flash Player

At an ancient technological age of 24 years old, Adobe Flash Player will no longer run after January 12, 2021. The latest Flash Player update specified new content would not be released. “Today marks the final scheduled release of Flash Player for all regions outside of Mainland China. Adobe will no longer support Flash Player after December 31, 2020, and Adobe will block Flash content from running in Flash Player beginning January 12, 2021,” according to a release issued by Adobe. All users are recommended to uninstall Flash player from their operating systems.

According to Adobe, “Open standards such as HTML5, WebGL, and WebAssembly have continually matured over the years and serve as viable alternatives for Flash content. Also, major browser vendors are integrating these open standards into their browsers and deprecating most other plug-ins (like Flash Player.”

Adobe officially announced the demise of Flash Player in July 2017. Companies including Apple, Facebook, Google, Microsoft, Mozilla, and many others have taken part in the overall plan to stop updating and distributing Flash Player. Adobe “believes that there has been sufficient time for developers, designers, businesses, and other parties to migrate Flash content to new standards.”

Flash Player opponents point out that it was a security disaster in the early 2000s, consisting of endless rounds of patching security vulnerabilities (usually the worst kinds), which prompted many content creators to use other, more efficient software partners.

For more information regarding the retirement of Adobe Flash Player, check out the Adobe Flash Player End of Life (EOL) General Information Page. Here you will also find detailed instructions on how to uninstall Flash Player from your operating system.

Founded in 1994, Creative Programs and Systems provides professional results for all computer needs. We design, create, and code an array of custom software programs and websites; implement internet marketing strategies for enhanced Search Engine Optimization (SEO) results; repair and provide support for computers of both residential and professional nature; build custom systems and servers, and offer secure data backups. Need assistance or want to learn more? Call us at 810-224-5252 or e-mail info@cpsmi.com.

Written by the digital marketing staff at Creative Programs & Systems: www.cpsmi.com.