4 Ways Technology Will Make Your Exhibition Stand More Successful

In the world of trade shows and exhibition stand marketing the pace of advertising and techniques to both engage and attract attendees is constantly evolving. Many trends have come and gone but one thing that remains is technology and the many different benefits and opportunities it brings for generating interest, gaining attention, building leads, establishing relationships and sales. You will want to find out how you can capitalise on technology to create a more compelling exhibition stand that is competitive and brings your organisation a stronger return on investment.

Trade show stand contractors were interviewed recently and were asked what exactly are the four top suggestions to put into effect with technology at trade shows? Their answers have been put together in this report that showcases the 4 top methods of incorporating technology in trade show exhibition stands. The answers are from the front line from people who have been in the industry for years and have extensive levels of experience. Take your time, sit back and relax and be sure to continue reading below to get the most from the next trade show your company attends and all future events.

Unique Exhibition Stand for Level Green

Unique Exhibition Stand for Level Green. Image credit: Retail Design Blog

1. Attract Attention & Gain Interest from Attendees

At trade shows, there is plenty of competing brands and companies working hard to capture and engage the attention of visitors at the trade show. You want to be sure that your brand stands out and puts a positive impression in your target audiences minds. You can use technology to generate leads, capture contact information, you can also use it to spread your brand message as well. Things like interactive screens, interactive walls and flooring, motion triggered technology and even location-based software to reach visitors is another great idea. You can use things like free downloadable applications for smartphones to capture leads and to continue engagement long after the trade show. An attendee at a trade show is there to gain new information, they want to learn about brands, and they are genuinely interested in the theme of the show. You only have a certain amount of time to capture these people’s interest and desire for your brand and it’s offerings.

2. Offer a Profoundly Unforgettable Experience

As mentioned above, when you can use advertising vehicles like downloadable applications for smartphones you can provide the audience with marketing collateral that they don’t have to physically carry with them. You can easily incorporate technology to capture leads and to build further interest in your products, your brand, and services. You can boost communication and build rapport and a connection with your audience much easier this way rather than giving them paper, brochures or other things that are so common. People do not want to be cluttered with advertising. You want to be sure that your brand stands out.

3. Create a Connection to Your Brand That is Memorable

When utilising technology you can do plenty of different things that will attract attendees and keep them engaged with your brand. You can use such opportunities as interactive games, leaderboards, smartphone applications, contests, questionnaires, and other methods to collect digital data and contact information. When you decide to go ahead and invest further into technology trade show stand contractors said that it offers more opportunities for further marketing opportunities. It also gives your sales team an opportunity to interact with attendees, while the digital data is collected and followed up on later. Be sure your brand stands out and make your exhibition stand unforgettable.

4. Calculate Your Return on Investment with Technology

Being able to determine how well your exhibition stand did at a trade show is not the easiest thing to do. Plenty of sales and purchases happen much later after an exhibition event. You can utilise technology to do things such as measuring engagement, gaining analytical information, as well as contact information collection to capitalise on for follow up strategies. As the years have rolled by technology has improved and being able to gauge the success levels of a trade show event is now much easier and determining statistics can be much more detailed.

Technology is the Future of Trade Show Success

In the year 2018, the exhibition show attendees are looking for new and exciting products, services and brand offerings that peak their interest. With the amount of competition and limited time at a trade show, technology allows you the opportunity to get more from it when applied. Follow the four suggestions above to have greater and more successful results with exhibition stand marketing.

Seafarers Earnings Deduction: An Amazing UK Tax Exemption

Work Tax Free Offshore with HMRC’s SED Rules

We would like to introduce you to the Seafarers Earnings Deduction which is an interesting and unique piece of tax legislation that allows United Kingdom citizens employed as seafarers the opportunity to claim a 100% tax exemption on all foreign earned monies. This law came into effect after 15 years of legal battle between the HMRC and the seafaring trade unions of the UK. The current version of this law was settled as of 2012 and we will tell you about it. Trade unions are still trying to expand the scope of this tax law to also include members of the military. This law was first put together back in 1988 and to this day many people who could apply for this exemption do not use it. We will discuss the different details as well as the rules and regulations on how this piece of tax law works and how it can apply to you.

Yacht crew should always take advantage of tax free income loopholes. Image credit: Work on a Yacht

To begin with, the Seafarers Earnings Deduction was first put into action for a number of different and specific reasons. These include the fact that seafaring employees spend a majority of time outside of the United Kingdom, also the competition and global marketplace for seafaring jobs are incredibly competitive and this law was enacted to help with the defence needs of the UK. The United Kingdom needed more citizens in foreign waters and ports as a format for national defence. This law was designed to specifically help seafaring employees who live in the United Kingdom. Although this law is designed to help those employed at sea many people do not utilise it or use it at all. It is mainly because the Seafarers Earnings Deduction is hard to understand. You can gain information from the HMRC Helpsheet 205 and we have listed the results below.

In Help Sheet 205 it states that a person must work on a ship to qualify for this tax exemption. Now, what qualifies as a ship is not listed however what is not considered a ship is explained. If you work on the following vessels you will not be able to apply or use the Seafarers Earnings Deduction. If you work on the following this law does not apply to you, if you work on a flotel, fixed or floating production platform, or mobile offshore drilling unit. These are clearly described as not being ships and they do not count towards the regulations of what is listed under the Seafarers Earnings Deduction for employment.

Among seafarers, there is a lot of misinformation and myths surrounding this tax deduction. In the industry, there are typically two types of people and how they deal with their taxes. Some choose to not file their taxes and hope that they don’t get caught. Others will set up companies ashore or in foreign countries to pay fewer taxes. However, if you are capable of using this tax exemption then you should use it. Many people do not understand the rules. One of the rules consists that you may only spend a maximum of 183 days ashore in the UK. A day is counted by being in the UK as of midnight of that day. If you are in the United Kingdom on midnight of a given day it counts as a day. Be sure to keep paperwork, stubs, and receipts that prove your time ashore. If you go over the 183-day limit then the Seafarers Earnings Deduction will not be applicable to you.

When we look at the HMRC Help Sheet 205 it states that you must embark or disembark from a foreign port. If you embark or disembark from the UK then you will not be able to use this tax exemption. If the HMRC made this tax exemption more understandable I believe more seafaring employees would take advantage of it. The Seafarers Earnings Deduction is a great law that allows you to declare all of your offshore earnings without having to pay tax on it. Declaring your income is important because the government can use the Open Exchange of Information and find out all your information. If you decided upon not filing your taxes you would not be able to do much with your money such as getting a mortgage or taking out a loan. You would need a SA302 letter which can only be given to you when you file your taxes at the end of the year.

The Seafarers Earnings Deduction is a great tax exemption and it should be used if you find that the rules apply to you!

Contrary to the rumour mill, this piece of tax law will be around for many more years and should be used if it applies to you. The Seafarers Earnings Deduction is a well kept secret and a wonderful way to save your offshore earned income.

Article Credits

The author acknowledges the following third party sites for use of material including but not limited to text, images, links and references:

What is an American Barn & Should You Own One?

Why an American Barn Makes Sense for Every Horse Owner

We aim to help you in deciding if you should want to own an American barn and the different elements they bring to your homestead. Continue reading as we outline the positive elements of an American style barn below.

An American barn is a building that is typically used on farms for various intents and purposes. It is an agricultural building and its purpose is to house livestock including cattle and horses. You can also store equipment and grain within as well. Barns are typically one gigantic open space with stalls built to one side of the building with an aisle for housing livestock.

An American barn is typically built from timber and is a very large building that houses everything under one single roof. Everything is found in one place and provides a great element of convenience and ease of use which makes them popular in the UK. Having your stabling and working area under one roof is extremely profitable in saving time and added convenience. When the weather is bad outside you will be sheltered and will have no need to go outside as everything needed to maintain your livestock is in the same place.

Horses Love Life in an American Barn Environment. Image credit: The Spruce

A barn also adds an element of security for your livestock and it also provides easier management over the stables. The design style that you choose is entirely up to you and you can add different sections to the barn to make things easier. You can add a tack room, feed storage, offices, bathrooms, vehicles, and storage. Also, you can store all your hay, feed and straw up above the main area keeping it dry and kept away from the elements that the different seasons provide.

A great fact about American barns and their design is the fact that they protect you from the elements and because they are built from quality timber they always ensure that there is warmth for your animals during the winter and lower temperatures and coolness in the summer heat. You can provide your horses with a warm and safe place to retreat too in the winter months and when the weather changes and heats up, your horses will be able to relax in a cool place sheltered from the hot summer sun.

American barns are also ideal for the horses themselves. They are social creatures who prefer to live in a herd element as they would naturally out in the wild. When you take advantage of side by side stalls, the horses will be able to socialise and won’t suffer any problems associated with loneliness. You can build windows within the partitions so the animals can socialise. American barns are also very open allowing for plenty of airflows and they allow for natural light to seep in. Having natural air permeating the building is both healthy for the horses as well as the people that work inside the building tending to the horses.

An Unhappy Horse Will Show Obvious Signs of Stress. Image credit: Better Photo

Deciding if using an American barn style for your homestead is right for you, ultimately relates to your needs. The ease and convenience of an American barn have many benefits and they are becoming a more popular style being built within the United Kingdom. With everything at your fingertips under one roof, it really does make managing and taking care of your horses much easier with a lot less stress attached to the daily process of maintenance and care. The good thing about an American barn is that it can be built into whatever specifications that you need it for. With an open-air design, you have the ability to build other areas to help with taking care of your animals or other things.

Sheltering your animals from the cold and protecting them from the heat during the summer is essential and keeping your horses in stalls next to each other will keep them socialised and content. With the second level to your barn, you can use it to store hay, feeds, and straw. The benefit is that you will be keeping them from being overexposed from the elements. Having everything you need to take care of your livestock under one roof is an incredibly huge benefit to these styles of the barn. Whether you decide to harness the benefits of this style of a barn is entirely up to you. You can design the barn yourself and costs will only relate to how you design and what elements you will be needing. The American barn is a great method to add convenience to your life.

Article Credits

The author would like to extend their thanks and acknowledgements to the following website for use of images, text, and reference material via external links:

Best way to check the quality of kitchen doors

The Do’s & Don’t of Buying Kitchen Units & Doors

When it comes down to whether there are any standards that define great quality when it comes to kitchen cabinets may be something you are wondering about. There actually are standards but there are no clearly defined rules, ruling or any form of regulation. However, this article will give you the information you need to be able to understand the level of quality and how durable custom kitchen unit carcasses may actually be. We will show you how to find true quality when it comes to finding a kitchen cabinet door set by reading more below.

You can ensure that you are getting kitchen door quality by looking at the basic components like the cabinet box, the drawers and or shelving. You want to find out what kind of material they are made of and how thick the materials are that make up the back of the kitchen cabinet, top, and bottom. Thick materials are actually much more stable and durable than thinner materials. If you were to use thin materials they would eventually break down from constant usage including wear and tear.

The next thing you will need to think about when it comes to style and functionality to your kitchen cabinets are the doors themselves. The actual cabinet door style that you choose can determine how mesmerising and pleasant your kitchen will turn out after you change the cabinet doors. Cabinet doors are one of the most visible elements of your kitchen and they can also come up to being quite expensive. There is a variety of selections to choose from including fancy to simple, there are a plethora of designs, styles, construction, and colours that you can choose from. We will discuss a few different high-quality kitchen door styles that we approve of that will make your kitchen more durable, effective as well as comfortable below.

Typical Framed & Frameless Kitchen Doors Styles. Image credit: Smith & Smith

When you decide you are ready to rebuild and buy yourself a new kitchen there are many different things that come into play. It is important for the number one thing being in mind as the major purchasing decision should be durability and longevity. We will list another three key things you should be looking for when it comes to choosing your kitchen cabinetry so you end up getting the best that benefits you and your home as a whole.

First of all look at the finish on the gloss doors of the cabinets. A high-quality glossy door will be noticeably reflective with a very flat finish. When it comes to gloss finishes, you will notice that low-quality kitchen doors have poor light reflection and typically will have a dull rippled looking finish to them. Most high qualities such as lacquered as well as acrylic type gloss doors are sold all over the place and we suggest you take your time before you make a major purchasing decision.

Another key thing you will want to look for when it comes to picking the highest quality kitchen cabinets is finding the edging of the cabinet. When it comes to kitchen cabinets when they are built 0.4mm-2.0mm or thicker they are much stronger and much more durable. It prevents chips and breaks from happening and they can resist breaking down from moisture as well as constant use that would easily break down a low-quality cabinet without a lot of time between buying from the store.

Gloss Kitchen Doors Are Very Much En Vogue Right Now. Image credit: Crest Timber

The last key thing we would like to point out to find quality kitchen cabinets is to look at the backs of the cabinets. When it comes to high quality cabinets, you will need kitchen unit backs to be between 15-18mm thick. If you can find something even thicker you will thank yourself for it. Low quality cabinet carcasses are made of a flimsy hard board that bends and break easily under pressure.

These are things you need to look for when it comes to finding top quality kitchen cabinets for your home. With over 500 different styles and hundreds of colours to choose from your choices are anything but limited when it comes to finding the best quality kitchen doors. Ultimately when you end up making a decision on how much you are willing to spend or what style you are willing to buy, ask yourself, will these cabinets last for the next 30 years?

We hope the information shared in this article will help you understand what to look for when it comes to quality and picking kitchen cabinetry and doors. The value and appearance of your kitchen will come down to the look and style of your kitchen cabinet doors so picking something that utilises those key features we suggested above will help you in getting the best your budget can apply.

Make a kitchen look high end with new hardware & countertops

Simple, cost-effective updates to make your kitchen a million dollars

If you are a person who does a lot of cooking within your kitchen you will notice that over time it will start to look worn out. It is a natural occurrence that wear and tear happens. When you are cooking in an environment that feels old and dirty can affect your moods and affect the way you cook and bake in your kitchen. Within this article, we would like to share how new kitchen hardware and countertops can make your kitchen stand out and seem a lot more expensive and valuable.

A great way to change the design and feel of your kitchen is by giving it a facelift with new kitchen cabinets and countertops. There are different methods on how you can accomplish this task. You can easily tear down your old cabinets and install new ones. With all the latest designs, colours and styles to change up the appearance of your kitchen from classic to modern or even to a country look are entirely up to your imagination.

With a Little Help Anyone Can Fit New Kitchen Cabinets. Image credit: DIY Network

Another method to improve the appearance of your kitchen is to reface your old kitchen cabinets with new doors. You won’t have to tear them down especially if they hold sentimental value. You can change the appearance of your cabinets by giving them a whole new look and style. A great way to improve the value of your kitchen is to look through the latest kitchen design magazines and visit kitchen transformation experts to get new ideas and impressions on what you can do. You can save money by finding discounts when you shop around online and visit different home improvement stores to make your kitchen look that much more expensive.

If you are not happy with your kitchen design and it looks tired it may be time to do a mini rebuild. You can easily change out the faucets, the lighting, cabinet handles and the countertops to make your kitchen look more expensive without having to break your budget. Whatever style you choose, there are always professionals that are ready and willing to help you from planning your new kitchen to rebuilding it and more. Have fun preplanning your kitchen because it is the place where everyone gathers.

Another method to improve and upgrade your kitchen to make it look and feel more expensive is choosing the right materials to replace kitchen countertops. Every house will be around for many decades and by having the right style of countertops, you will improve the value, look and feel of your kitchen. Many interior designers have come up with unique designs and materials for countertops.

A New Kitchen Worktop Should Only Be Measured & Fitted by a Professional. Image credit: YouTube

When it comes to the kitchen being the heart of your home, then the kitchen countertop provides the essence. The countertop is an area where we serve and prepare food and upgrading your kitchen worktops can be a sound investment and last much longer than other upgrades. If you are wishing to sell your home in the future, a beautiful kitchen with aesthetically pleasing counter tops will increase the value of your home.

When it comes to making the decision of what material you will use for the kitchen countertops can seem like a daunting task. Years ago the selections were incredibly limited. However, nowadays you have hundreds of materials, patterns, textures and different styles to choose from. Whether if you are remodelling your home or just improving your kitchen, here are some materials you should consider.

Granite is a popular countertop and is featured in many different high-end kitchens. It is a sturdy material that is both heat and scratch resistant. The stone is quarried from different areas of the world and the designs, colours, and features will be unique to each area the stone is quarried from.

Another popular kitchen countertop type of stone is Namibia. It is characterised by a gold look with coloured veins.

Blue Eye is another natural stone that is highly scratch resistant and offers sanitary features and withholds weather resistance. This stone is popular for kitchen countertops and is imported from Canada.

Improving the look and feel of your kitchen is important when it comes to doing kitchen remodelling. We suggest that you choose the highest value countertops and cabinets to give your kitchen a more expensive look and feel. Being comfortable in your kitchen should be the number one goal of your rebuild and adding value to your home is essential. Living in a comfortable kitchen will make cooking and baking that much more enjoyable.

We recommend you visit a kitchen showroom to gather more ideas and details on how to maximise the look and feel of your kitchen and to give it a much more expensive style. When you choose to sell your home an updated kitchen can either make or break a sale. Being able to update your countertops and cabinets is an easy way to improve the style of your home and raise the over allvalue for market resale.

Over-Pronate When You Run? Find Your Perfect Running Shoes

Get footwear that helps prevent injuries and pain

Pronation refers to the natural movement of the human body and the way your foot rolls and distributes impact upon landing. It refers to the way your foot rolls inward or outward when you land and it helps the lower leg deal with the shock. This will help you in purchasing a comfortable shoe for your runs for proper cushioning.

Foot Pronation Analysis. Image credit: X Body Concepts

Understanding your Gait

During activities that involve the entire body such as running and swimming, every individual has a unique way of movement. This is known as your gait. This pattern may have resulted from your lifestyle and habits, as well as your body’s stability, mobility, strength, and flexibility.

A gait analysis helps in mapping out your natural pattern of movement, which is key for you as a runner because it determines the shoes you need to wear and the amount of cushioning your feet require.

Check your pronation at home

Several methods can be used;

  1. Take a video of yourself running on a treadmill and observe which part of your foot strikes the ground first.
  2. Look at the wear pattern of your older pair of running shoes
  3. Use the wet foot method where you step on the floor or wet paper with slightly wet feet

The outcome of the tests will help you determine if you are a neutral runner, and overpronator, or an underpronator, also known as a supinator.

You can also have your gait analyzed at the shoe store or by a podiatrist. They will ask you to run on a treadmill and watch your strike so as to make a diagnosis. In case they diagnose overpronation, they will be in a good position to recommend shoes that help in correcting it as well as helping with shock absorption. Let them also measure your feet to determine the correct size.

Pronation is in itself not a bad thing, but it does affect the way you run and may increase the risk of injury. This is why your pronation pattern is an important factor in choosing the right running shoes.


Overpronation refers to feet that roll in excessively, or when they should not. In this case, there is too much weight transferred to the medial or inner side of the foot as stated earlier, meaning that during a run, most of the weight is borne by the inner edge of your foot rather than by the ball of your foot. This problem destabilizes the foot, and it will attempt to regain its stability by compensating for the inward motion. This creates a kind of chain reaction which will affect the biomechanical efficiency of the leg, especially at the hip and knee joints.

The shoes of overpronators tend to show more wear under the ball of the foot especially the big toe and on the inside of the heel. It is, therefore, important that overpronators consider buying shoes that offer maximum support or structured cushioning. Shoes in these two categories will help your feet distribute the impact on landing more effectively.

New Balance 860v7 are great for women who overpronate. Image credit: New England Running Co

Criteria for Choosing Running Shoes

1. The Midsole

Overpronators require good cushioning and additional support especially along the midsole of the shoe. It is, therefore, important to focus on the arch side of the midsole when buying running shoes because improper support at the midsole can lead to pain, fatigue, discomfort, or even injury.

2. The Outsole & Heel Counter

If you have overpronation, the best support comes from shoes that offer a supplemental heel wedge, such a New Balance running trainers. This leads to more cushioning and impact absorption. A rigid and snug fit at the heel counter will also help in alleviating most of the discomfort that arises from overpronation.

3. Multi-Level Densities

This can be achieved using padding and foams with different levels of cushioning, so as to give you a more customizable fit. This can be from some dual density or tri-density foams, gels, and compression technology which will assist curbing all issues that overpronation can cause.

4. Long Ride Comfort

Good running shoes should be able to offer long term comfort against overpronation. The levels of comfort that a shoe offers becomes more important as endurance demands rise.

Overpronation may also require you to try orthotics, which you can buy over the counter. These are really helpful in combination with the correct pair of shoes. In the case of a serious case of overpronation, our podiatrist may also opt to make orthotics which will help with alleviating the condition.

When buying shoes, always pick shoes that are the right size for foot length and width. Don’t forget that feet tend to swell towards the late afternoon or early evening or after a strenuous activity, so the best time to fit or measure the feet is after a run or at the end of the day.

Also, remember to replace your running shoes every 300 to 500miles as shoes of overpronators tend to wear out much faster. The support levels of running shoes diminish at a faster rate when the shoes are used back to back for days. You may, therefore, need to consider having two pairs of running shoes.

How to Avoid Light Pollution While Using a Telescope

Even though the United Kingdom has the biggest total area of dark skies in Europe, light pollution remains a serious issue that plagues both amateur and professional astronomers, as can be seen from the image below. Nonetheless, amateur observers have a distinct advantage over professionals in that they can move their equipment to avoid the worst light polluted areas, but for those who can’t move to dark observing sites, here are some practical tips to get the best possible views of the heavens from light-polluted areas. First things first though- what is light pollution exactly?

Image credit: Astronomy Now

Image credit: Astronomy Now

Light pollution explained

In its simplest form, light pollution is light that is directed to where it is not wanted or needed, and it can occur even in the smallest villages. From an astronomer’s perspective however, light pollution is any light that spoils his view of the night sky.

This spoilage can be in the form of “sky glow”, which is the cumulative effect of all misdirected light, such as streetlights, light from parking areas, shop fronts and sports fields, and badly designed security/outdoor lighting from the millions of homes in any large city. Additionally, and more pertinent to an individual observer, is line-of-sight light pollution, which is the light that shines directly into his eyes from say, the security/outdoor lighting from his neighbour’s houses.

Making the most of a bad situation

Given the fact that light pollution is here to stay for at least the near future, there are some things the average amateur observer can do to minimise its effects on his observing experiences, and the best place for any beginner observer to begin is to understand his equipment, and the need to adapt his vision to low light conditions.

Dark adaptation

Human vision work in two “modes”- photopic mode for vision in high light conditions, and scotopic mode, for vision in low light conditions. In photopic mode, the cones in the eye detect bright light and colour, and in this mode, the rods in the eye that detect low light levels are deactivated.

However, high light pollution levels partially prevent the activation of the rods that are designed to detect faint light while keeping the cones partially active, with the result that dim objects remain invisible, or difficult to see. Thus, to get the best views under light polluted skies, an observer needs to adapt his vision to low light conditions as fully as he can.

Under “normal” conditions, where the transition from light to dark is steep and sudden, this process can take anything from 30-, to 60 minutes. Sadly, though, the dark adaptation process can take as long as 24 hours or more when the observer’s eyes were exposed to extremely bright sunlight during the day or even longer if the observer had been exposed to sunlight reflecting off very bright surfaces such as snow on the ground during the day.

In practice, this means that an observer can expect to lose as much as 0.75 magnitudes off his threshold magnitude because his vision is not fully dark-adapted on the succeeding night. Moreover, even a momentary exposure to a bright light will destroy whatever dark adaptation he had accomplished, meaning that the adaption process must start again from scratch.

Light pollution and aperture

One common myth holds that since large aperture UK telescopes gather more light than small aperture instruments do, the larger instrument must gather a correspondingly larger amount of light pollution as well, which according to the myth, means that the view in the larger instrument must be washed out.

This is simply not true. The fact is that a large telescope will gather more starlight than a small one will, irrespective of where the large telescope is used. Regardless of the level of light pollution in any given area, a large-aperture instrument will consistently reveal more stars than a smaller instrument.

The moral of this story should be obvious: large apertures work better than small apertures in areas with high levels of light pollution; however, large aperture instruments (especially reflecting telescopes) are more prone to image distortion caused by heat currents in the tube, but this is easily corrected by the installation of small cooling/circulation fans at various locations in the tube to stabilise the air in the tube.

More tips and tricks

There are many common-sense tips and tricks any observer can follow to maximise his or her viewing experience under light polluted skies. Here are a few that won’t cost an arm and leg-

Optimise your telescope

“Optimisation” simply means adding a tube extension to the front of the instrument. To achieve the best results, the extension must be at least one tube diameter long, especially on reflecting telescopes. On instruments of this type, the focuser is often so close to the top of the tube that stray light from the side can spill over the top of the tube- straight into the focuser or even onto the secondary mirror. The image below shows a homemade tube extension on a reflecting telescope.

Image credit: Minx.cc

Image credit: Minx.cc

A tube extension prevents this from happening, but be sure to paint the inside of the extension matte black to prevent reflections from the inside of the extension. Another option is to glue some black velvet to the inside of the extension to absorb stray light from the side. Matte black paint and velvet work equally well to suppress stray light, and to improve contrast in the image.

Use the right eyepiece

Under light polluted skies, the exit pupil of an eyepiece is much more important than the magnification that eyepiece delivers. The exit pupil can be described as the diameter of the bundle of light that exits the eyepiece, and using the correct exit pupil can greatly enhance an image under light polluted skies.

The object of using the correct exit pupil under light polluted skies is to maximise the amount of light from different kinds of objects that reaches an observer through the eyepiece. If the exit pupil is too large, some of the light exiting the eyepiece will fall onto the observers’ retina, instead of “into” his pupil, meaning that much of the contrast (and quality) of the image is lost. Conversely, if the exit pupil is too small, the image may be dimmed to the point where it becomes impossible to see, or to focus properly. The table below gives some examples of recommended exit pupils to use in less-than-ideal conditions, such as heavy light pollution.

Object viewed Exit pupil (mm)
Extended open star clusters, complete lunar disc 3 to 5
Deep sky objects such as planetary nebulae and smaller galaxies, binary stars, lunar detail, and planets in poor seeing conditions 2 to 4
Binary stars, lunar detail, and planets on night of good seeing 0.5 to 2

Source: Astronomy.com

Note that eyepieces meant for use under light polluted skies must be fitted with full eyecups to prevent stray light from the side from entering your eye.

Build a light shield

If all else fails, constructing a shield to protect yourself from particularly troublesome low-level light sources is a viable option. The images below show detail of a DIY shield that can be constructed cheaply from materials (PVC tubing and fittings) that are available from any hardware store. Note however that it may be necessary to anchor this shield in windy conditions.

Image source: Chris Bayus

Image source: Chris Bayus

One more thing

Under severely light-polluted skies, investing in a GO-TO telescope mount might be of some use, especially if there are so few reference stars visible that star hopping to a desired target becomes impossible. However, the downside of GO-TO telescopes involves the fact that there is often a trade-off between tracking ability and the quality of the optics, meaning that even if the instrument manages to find and track an object, the less-than-perfect optics might render the object almost invisible in heavily light polluted skies.

Novice observers in light polluted areas who are considering investing in a GO-TO instrument are therefore strongly advised to only deal with reputable dealers in optical instruments on the one hand, and to join an astronomy club in the area to gain as much experience and knowledge of observing in less-than-ideal conditions before purchasing a telescope, on the other.

Tree Radar: What Is It & How Does It Work?

Scanning Tress at Underground Root Level

Could you possibly imagine a world without trees? Most likely not! Apart from being aesthetically beautiful, trees play a critical part in both local as well as the global environment. You may have heard the saying that trees are like the lungs of the earth. This is because they can help to combat climate change since they absorb carbon, and in return they release oxygen. This is carried out through the process of photosynthesis. So, if you come to think of it, in your city or village, trees have a role at providing more purified air, as well as diffusing noise, reducing pollution, providing sustainable drainage, and improving the landscape.

However trees need to be taken care of. And apart from taking proper care of our trees, it is also important that when evaluating them, this is carried out professionally. Tree evaluations are a key part of arboricultural management. A consultant will need to have specialised investigation equipment so as to provide the most suitable and sustainable solutions for treescapes, which can sometimes be quite challenging. Tree Radar is a type of equipment that is non-invasive. It is a root locator and also carries out decay scanning. When hiring an arboricultural specialist you should make sure to check if they utilise tree radar equipment for their surveys and evaluations. A professional company will make use of this technology as it is the top one at present.

Crown to Root Tree Inspection. Image credit: Westchester Tree Life

Crown to Root Tree Inspection. Image credit: Westchester Tree Life

The main aim of any arboricultural management service is to promote the health of trees. With tree stock assessments and management plans, coupled up with any suitable maintenance and replacement techniques to ensure tree health and form, such a company can help in the proper care and supervision of trees.

The Tree Radar is a type of ground penetrating radar which is known to be the best way to investigate tree roots and tree decay. The best and most accurate results can be achieved without being invasive or disruptive in any way. In fact Tree Radar is the leading tree investigative tool because it can manage to detect sub-surface infrastructure even through concrete or tarmac. It is effectively the most cost effective yet accurate equipment available for these types of evaluations. It is also very fast as it collects data on the electromagnetic differences that can lie between strata below the ground, and artefacts. This enables one to determine both the depth as well as the precise location of the tree roots, along with any other items buried beneath the ground. This could include pipes, ducts, and cables among others. This data is then recorded in the tree survey field computer at the site. Survey findings are then interpreted to make recommendations and proper decisions.

When using Tree Radar it is also possible to determine the health of the vegetation without disruption in any way. Any sub-surface infrastructure will also be safe. Tree root mapping, or root morphology can be detailed, and root zone conditions are made available too. As a result this information can simplify the decision making process relating to any installations or developments that may need to be carried out at a site. These could include construction works, installation of services etc.

Tree Radar. Image credit: Design with Nature

Tree Radar. Image credit: Design with Nature

Tree Radar is also very helpful to ascertain any decay problems. It is a totally non-invasive way of surveying a tree for possible decay. Arboricultural specialists use Tree Radar to assess the likely risks of a tree’s structural integrity as a result of decay. With the use of electromagnetic waves it will be possible to determine the different properties of sound wood, and decayed wood. These can then be mapped on a radargram. Decay present high in the tree canopy, or in the main bole, or buttress roots can also be found.

Tree Radar can interpret radargrams as well as identify any voids. These underground badger runs can generally be attributed to a number of soil disturbances and so it will be possible to draw up on this information and make the necessary decisions to avoid additional problems.

Tree Radar has been improving ever since it was introduced and it is also used in Kent tree surveys and investigations. To date it is considered to be the best method for such studies and investigations.

What To Look For in a Commercial Construction Contractor

Any building project relies on a single and very important decision – choosing the right commercial construction contractor. For example, a poorly selected commercial construction contractor is likely to design and build a poor quality building that will eventually cost more than what was budgeted for. Also, its scope may not match the original intensions let alone building regulations.

That is why there are a number of important attributes everyone should look for when choosing a prospective commercial construction contractor.

How a good construction contractor can help you

First and foremost, a good commercial London construction contractor must always represent himself in the best business-like demeanour. Respecting the schedule of the business owner and showing up on time are manners that make great construction contractors competent, organized and ready to deal with any questions or concerns the clients may have.

Creating a sense of confidence and instilling trust are among the most special values construction contractors rely on – and seeing how a contractor deals with the client before they sign the contract can tell a lot about the upcoming project.

As we said above, communication is among the key attributes to look for when choosing the best building contractors for your commercial or residential space. In reality, every contractor should be a great listener and communicator – and how they translate the ideas of the individual and their goals plays a great role in how they approach the project and provide insight on what can be expected.

Find a Blend of Knowledge & Experience

Commercial construction contractors do not have an easy job – mostly because commercial construction is not at all an easy pill to swallow. Every contractor must demonstrate the experience and skills to get the job done, on time and on budget. Also, they need to have years of experience in order to manage a large project – and a lot of knowledge to be put to practice. After all, there are different kinds of projects and finding a construction contractor that has the experience in most of the commercial types should be everyone’s priority.

All the good and well established construction contractors have a professional reputation and many recommendations and referrals under their belt. Asking them to provide references and proof of past projects is definitely important – and asking them to include not only their references but also from their partners and businesses they work with. This all adds up to the aspect of professional reputation and how important it is nowadays when choosing a contractor of this kind.

Getting a Great Deal on your Construction Needs

Asking your friends, families or even neighbours about what construction contractors they recommend is a wise choice. Obviously, friends and family can be great references for the contractor as long as they are your friends and family and not theirs.

Another wise thing to do is to take bids and specify what you need done. This way, you will have all your potential construction contractors come out and look at what you need done and propose their plan to you. This way, you will be given an estimate from all of them – but it is of utmost importance for you to screen everyone and find the best construction contractor for your needs.

Getting a great deal of your construction needs is the most valuable lesson you can learn from this. However, you should always know and never choose the cheapest option, mostly because of the rule ‘you get what you pay for’ which definitely stands as true in professional endeavours like this one.

Construction Contractors & Pricing: How To Do It Right

At last, before you get any building work done, agreeing on the pricing is another aspect you should take advantage of. Ideally, you should never pay the contractor more than 30%-50% beforehand. This is mostly because of the fact that too many times, construction contractors take the money upfront and either not finish or do a poor job on your building. The best way to agree on a payment is with reaching certain milestones in the construction process, and you releasing money from your budget for each one that has been completed. This allows maximum transparency for both you and your chose commercial construction contractor.

Facts to Consider Before Hiring a Kent Solicitor

For the layman, legal intricacies and matters are too complicated. Thus, when one requires legal assistance, it is always best to go to a solicitor for advice and guidance. Some cases may be somewhat difficult and problematic. Consequently, you need a top solicitor to handle your legal issue as best as possible. A solicitor is a professional and qualified lawyer who has extensive knowledge in various aspects of the law. Therefore, you have to identify the best solicitor for the job at hand. It is more like having the right tool for the right job. Otherwise, you may end up utterly frustrated along with a huge hole in your savings. There are a few tips you could find helpful in securing the services of the best solicitor.

The Law Society solicitor database

The first stop in your search for the best solicitor would be the law societies. Every law society has a database of all lawyers and their corresponding law firms. You get information on their contact details and areas of specialization. All this information is available online. However, if you still can’t find the information you need online, you can always call the law society’s helpline number. The helpline number is available online. You can also visit the law society offices for further assistance.

Narrow down the search

Once you get the contact details, you can start making contact with some of the solicitors in Kent. Most solicitors in Kent prefer face-to-face meetings, so make time to meet them. Have a list of the points you need to be covered in your legal case or issue. Provide the solicitor with all the details of your legal problem and the relevant paperwork. Enquire about the costs and how the solicitor will be charging for the work. Remember solicitors have a knack for details. Carry along an identification document when going to meet them. They want to know exactly who they are dealing with.

Study solicitors’ specialisms

The law is, so to speak, a wide and rugged terrain. It covers many different areas, which may not be too familiar to the ordinary citizens. Areas of specialization include employment complaints, personal injury claims, clinical and medical negligence, immigration and asylum law, and family and mediation law, among many others. Knowledge of the solicitor’s areas of specialization will enable you match your legal issue with the right solicitor in Kent.

Check Reviews

It is also helpful to read consumer reviews about the solicitors. Get a solicitor with a positive history; a solicitor who has previously handled similar issues like yours with success. Find out if the solicitor was ever involved in any act of dishonesty or misconduct. If they have cheated before, they are likely to cheat again. However, you need to bear in mind that lack of positive reviews does not necessarily mean a dark past for the lawyer. Some clients may not bother leaving a review once their case is concluded. Therefore, reviews should not be the only factor to take into account when hiring solicitors in Kent.

Worthingtons Solicitors