The Evolution Of Biologic Drugs


Humans have various needs in their daily lives – the right to food and shelter are among the most basic of human needs. After all, survival instincts are innate in all of us and the human body can only function well without food and water for a limited period of time. Then, there are other secondary needs also requiring our attention. Our health, for instance, needs as much tender loving care from us if want to live a long quality life for all the years of our lives.

There’s a catch, though. The more our technology progresses, the more complex diseases and ailments that affect humans have become. These microbes also evolve and have even rendered some antibiotics useless as they have grown resistant to the drug’s therapeutic effects. In a way, it has contributed to the rising costs of medicine and health care but there is also another reason why drugs keep getting more expensive through the years – medical/scientific research. More extensive and expensive researches and studies are done in various parts of the globe for various issues that mankind faces. Those that pertain to health are the most costly and require the most effort too.

Conventional medicines are stitched together by chemists in large factories using other chemicals as building blocks. Their molecular structures are well defined and relatively simple. Aspirin, for example, contains just 21 atoms (nine carbons, eight hydrogens and four oxygens) bonded together to form a particular shape. A single aspirin tablet – even kid-sized – contains trillions of copies of the drug molecule.

Biologic drugs are a different story. This class of medication is not synthesized chemically – instead they are harvested directly from biology, as their name suggests. Most modern biologics are assembled inside vats – or bioreactors – that house genetically engineered microbes or mammalian cell cultures. Efforts are underway to make them in plants.

Biologic drugs can be whole cells, alive or dead. They can be the biomolecules produced by cells, like antibodies, which are normally secreted by our immune system’s B cells. Or they can be some of the internal components of cells, like enzymes.


As most conventional medicines are no longer that effective in treating a list of diseases and ailments that keep on getting longer each day, looking for alternative solutions should be done now while we still have time. Biologic drugs are unlike your regular OTC or prescription drug since you can’t really tell what’s in them. They often come in liquid preparations and are among the fastest rising drug categories in America.

Biologic drugs can be whole cells, alive or dead. They can be the biomolecules produced by cells, like antibodies, which are normally secreted by our immune system’s B cells. Or they can be some of the internal components of cells, like enzymes.

Biologics are typically much larger molecules than those found in conventional pharmaceuticals, and in many cases their exact composition is unknown (or even unknowable). You’re unlikely to find biologic drugs in tablet form – they tend to be delicate molecules that are happiest in liquid solution.

While biologics are one of the fastest-growing drug categories in the U.S., they aren’t exactly new. The Biologics Control Act, passed in 1902, was the first law aimed at ensuring the safety of some of the earliest biologics – vaccines. Congress was moved to pass the law after a contaminated batch of diphtheria shots left 13 children dead. Jim, the horse from which the diphtheria antitoxin had been extracted, had contracted tetanus.


This multi-million dollar industry is perhaps the future of modern medicine. The drugs that we take to combat sickness should also keep up with the health needs of the times. Even if we think it’s a novel concept, the truth is that the field of biologics has been in use for thousands of years. It is founded on the body’s processes right down to the cellular level. Vaccines are a fine example of biologics at work. And expect to see more advances in this field to help humans deal with the issues we are having right now involving our health and well-being.

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Making Money Out Of Technology


The modern world is ruled by technology. It is a no-brainer fact that even school kids understand very well. It’s such a lucrative market with billions of people owning tech gadgets like smartphones, laptops, computers, and other household and communication appliances that come at a hefty price, so you can always be sure there is a demand for it. Most big businesses nowadays are related to technology like Google, Facebook, Microsoft, Apple, Samsung, etc. They have been shaping society over the past few decades and they sure have made lots of money all this time despite being involved in a handful of controversies over time.

But despite the big profits these companies are making, there are undeniable losses too. Not all their gimmicks click to people and they often have to incur millions of losses on a few business risks they have taken. The drop in tech shares in the market as of late is a testament to how unstable the technology industry is and any small changes can have big implications on these businesses and millions more who rely on their products and services in their daily lives.

U.S. stocks are mixed Monday as Facebook and other technology companies open the week with losses. Media companies are rising following a report that Charter Communications might be bought by a Japanese technology company, and cable network companies Scripps Networks and Discovery Communications agreed to combine. Banks are also trading higher.

KEEPING SCORE: The Standard & Poor’s 500 index added 2 points, or 0.1 percent, to 2,474 as of 3:30 p.m. Eastern time. The Dow Jones industrial average continued to build on its record highs. It gained 89 points, or 0.4 percent, to 21,917. The Nasdaq composite lost 19 points, or 0.3 percent, to 6,355. The Russell 2000 index of smaller-company stocks dipped 2 points, or 0.1 percent, to 1,427. A majority of the stocks on the New York Stock Exchange rose.

WHAT’S ON? TV: Charter Communications climbed after Bloomberg reported that Japanese conglomerate SoftBank is considering buying the cable TV provider. The report Sunday said that SoftBank initially wanted to combine Charter with Sprint, but after Charter rejected that idea, the technology company may buy Charter outright. 


The struggle is real even among big tech brands that have dominated the world for decades now. Google, Facebook, and Amazon all incurred losses and nobody can tell yet whether how things will fare over the next few days, weeks, or months. The thing is that almost all businesses also rely on most of these tech companies in running their own businesses. Hence, everyone is affected because the delivery of these goods and services are interrelated and can have an impact to how we a certain business or brands all fare in the real world.

Technology companies missed out. Facebook returned some of its gains from last week, when it posted strong second-quarter results, and reports of higher expenses continued to affect Amazon’s shares. Banks rose, with HSBC climbing after it disclosed its own earnings.

About half of the companies in the Standard & Poor’s 500 have reported their second-quarter results, and this week, Apple and other companies will join the fray. Steve Wood, chief market strategist for Russell Investments, said he expects strong earnings for U.S. companies, but he thinks stock markets in other regions will do better.

“The earnings cycle and the economic cycle are earlier stage and the central bank of Europe is going to be providing liquidity over the next year,” he said. “It’s been an eight-and-a-half-year bull market in the U.S. and eight-plus-year economic expansion.”


Running a business is a risk an entrepreneur wholeheartedly takes because you won’t have a shot at success if you don’t make an effort to try despite the risks involved. While it is non-negotiable to use technology in running a business, it does not always have to be the best or the latest in the market, what’s important is that you are using the right tech tools that can elevate your business to the next level. You can actually save more money in automating certain business process rather than having it done manually, which is why any rise or fall in the tech industry is the business of everybody.

Making Money Out Of Technology was first seen on IPacBlog


Why The Children Need To Be Exposed To The Arts


Adults today can only fondly reminisce their childhood years of day-long frolic under the sun and countless hours playing outdoors and getting dirty and all. Kids today don’t lead a life as active as most adults once did. They are exposed to a digital world overruled by technology. Kids won’t have a hard time navigating a smartphone or any tech gadget, unlike most adults. Meanwhile, they lack the psychomotor skills to engage in active play and usually don’t spend as much time playing outdoors than kids before did.

One more thing children today miss out on is the opportunity to really dabble in the arts despite the abundance of art materials, supplies, and opportunities. They can even get inspiration from the web but still, they’d rather spend all their free time glued to their smartphones and tinkering with all those apps that were unheard of in the past. Indeed, a lot has changed and in a way, new opportunities open up to children but they also miss out on others that are actually better for their health and well-being.

As much evidence will support, drawing has significant developmental benefits for young children. It gives them space to represent what they think—territory within which they can exaggerate what is important to them or express ideas they are not yet able to verbalize. Through art, children are able to describe and reveal their notions about themselves, the world, and their place in it.

The role of drawing in enhancing childhood development has been acknowledged since art education first became a part of public-school curricula in the Commonwealth states in 1870.  A wealth of research has shown a strong link between the scribbles of preschoolers and their early stages of written language and reading. Drawing also helps prepare children for success in other subject areas, including explaining and communicating mathematical reasoning, which assists in their comprehension and communication of math concepts.

More generally, extensive evidence suggests that exposure to art in school has long-term academic and social benefits for kids, especially those who are economically disadvantaged. A 2012 study by the United States’ National Endowment for the Arts, for example, found that low-income eighth-graders who had lots of exposure to the arts were more likely than their peers with less exposure to earn higher grades and attend college.


The arts depict the state of the times. Even way before, famous painters were known to get inspiration for their drawings from the events that took place in their surroundings. It is why to learn history, you simply just have to take a peek at artworks created around that time and you can picture out what happened back then. If kids now don’t get a chance to explore their creativity, then what does that mean to a future that is devoid of beautiful and captivating artworks that depict the era they once lived in?

Drawing allows us to test and play with feelings and ideas. It nurtures the verbal skills of reading, writing and speaking.

Drawing is a means of closely observing the world around us, recording what we observe and using that as the basis for further enquiry. It can be an important player in our internal dialogue as we work through conceptual challenges.

Drawing is a learned skill; we improve with instruction. Yet we shy away from drawing instruction for children. There is a misplaced fear that we will stifle creativity if we step in with drawing instruction.

But the reality is that most children simply give up on drawing because they receive no instruction.


Children aren’t expected to create masterpieces. They are free to express what they think of and their interpretation of the world or that of a specific object or occasion as simply a means of self-expression. Not all children will turn out to be great artists but still, they need an avenue where they can express their artistic side regardless of how good they are. However, technology greatly impedes their artistry as it takes most of their time away from drawing and scribbling. It is the parent’s responsibility to indicate just how much time kids can spend in using technology and encourage them to pursue other artistic interests to enjoy a more well-rounded childhood.

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Appreciation For The Arts Beyond A Disability


Equality will always be the subject of many heated debates and arguments from then until now. While there are many things that divide people these days, there are still apparently some common denominators that bridge the gap between the rich and poor, gifted and not, or healthy and sickly. The arts will always be that bridge that continues to connect and inspire people of all walks of life.

Who says that you can’t appreciate the arts if you have a disability? You may be lacking in a sense or two but other senses are heightened to make up for what you don’t have. Dabbling with the arts gives differently-abled individuals a newfound freedom to express themselves without being limited by their disabilities. It also allows them to experience a sense of belongingness to the craft and other artists especially to the ones with disabilities themselves.

Being blind yet creating visual arts is just one of the many achievements made possible thanks to the work of the disability charity Open Arts.

And now as part of its 25th anniversary celebrations this year, the charity is giving everyone a chance to see the great work being produced at its art classes with a unique exhibition throughout the month in the Black Box, Belfast.

Embroidery, watercolour and action painting are just some of the techniques which will be showcased in the Three in One exhibition, featuring artwork created by people attending three weekly visual arts groups run by Open Arts.

Eileen Branagh, chief executive of Open Arts, says: “Our artists do not let their disabilities hold them back and this exhibition demonstrates that, given the right support and encouragement, there are no limits to their creativity.”


Today, people with disabilities try to break out of the stigma that they can never be productive members of society by showing their potential through various artworks and artistic expressions. At times, you can never tell for yourself that such an art piece was created by a disabled person because creativity and talent aren’t just for healthy people, after all.

The exhibition aims to raise awareness, challenge perceptions and reduce stigma surrounding both physical disability and mental health, whilst also addressing accessibility within the visual arts through a programme of events. Through the exhibition, organisers hope to raise awareness of the work that disabled artists can produce regardless of the limitations that society places upon them, recognising that disabled people should have the opportunity to participate fully in the arts. Curated by Arts for Health Milton Keynes in partnership with MKDAD and, the exhibition showcases 50 works, to coincide with the MK50 celebrations.


There is actually such a thing as a disability in the arts. Not just limited to artworks, it encompasses visual arts and theatrical performances where the stars are disabled individuals. The arts also serve as an outlet where disabled people can vent out their inner feelings or have it function as an expressive therapy. Some genius and notable people in history were surprisingly individuals with disabilities too. Take for instance Beethoven who eventually went deaf but was still able to create enduring and beautiful music despite his disability.

Off the Record was the second production in a Carriageworks project called New Normal, devised to showcase disability in the arts in 10 productions across three years. The first program, Simple Infinity, directed by Urban Theatre Projects’ Rosie Dennis, premiered last July. Next up, in September, is a collaboration between Studio A, which supports visual artists with disabilities, and Erth Visual & Physical Inc called Bird Fox Monster, billed as a “series of experiences, performances, sculpture works and installations framed around a three-course meal carefully designed to connect all five senses”.

Carriageworks received $100,000 for the project, out of the $475,000 allocated by the NSW government in 2015 for support programs that “promote social inclusion through the arts and disability sector”. Disability services minister John Ajaka announced the allocation. And therein lies one of the conundrums of this burgeoning artistic field: is it about equity and access, about therapy and education, or about art for art’s sake?


These days, technology plays a big role in how disabled individuals further explore their artistic talents. Examples are assistive or adaptive technologies that allow the disabled to enjoy the visual arts. However, it is not always easy for them to go out of their comfort zones as not everyone in society understands their situation. But still, expressing their artistic side is a great way to gradually break out of the stigma and regain the confidence they lost when they lost their senses. You have no idea what it is like to live in their shoes, so be more appreciative of their effort in living life to the fullest despite their many physical limitations.

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Why Society Treats Women As Second-Class Citizens


Women are God’s gift to mankind. It may sound a bit like a feminist rant but that is the truth as mankind will perish without women. Most women often put their own personal dreams aside once they have a family because of family obligations and the responsibility of raising children. Unfortunately, as if women’s sacrifices aren’t enough, the society, in general, considers women as second-class citizens who have to prove their worth first before they are even given the chance to try.

A fine example is the right to vote. It took a long while before most women all over the world were recognized to be equals of men and were allowed to help shape the future of the nation by exercising their right to suffrage. But until now, there are still many instances where women don’t get the same treatment as men. Also, violence against women has never waned despite the many advances in technology. It just took off on different platforms like the web. For the most part, women existed for the pleasure of men and it is something that many feminists detest considering many women can even outsmart men in school or at work.

Yet we’re seeing a lot of warning signs that global progress on women’s rights is in real danger of being thrown into reverse. Whether that’s new legal loopholes allowing child marriage in Bangladesh, where ActionAid works, or President Trump reinstating the ‘Global Gag Rule’, restricting access to abortion for some of the most vulnerable women in the world. There is a global urgency to make sure women’s rights are protected and advanced, not eroded.

One in three women and girls will experience violence in their lifetimes. Women are still earning on average 23% less than men, in more insecure, part-time, low-paid jobs. They also bear the brunt of unpaid care work, doing nearly 2.5 times more than men. ActionAid’s research has shown that the barriers women in developing countries face to accessing job opportunities and fair pay mean they lose out on a staggering $9 trillion every year.

There is so much more to do, and it is essential that Britain keeps up its role as a champion for women’s and girls’ rights internationally.


There have been many allegations of women right’s violations even in first world countries like America and the UK. Even though leaders often talk about valuing women’s rights, it is not exactly what always happen in real life. From discrimination in the workplace, marital abuse, and limited opportunities, women struggle all the time and it seems that the whole world is just okay with it because deep down, a highly patriarchal society considers women as second-class citizens who don’t deserve to enjoy the same perks enjoyed by men.

From the same white male–led White House that brought you the American Health Care Act (which could force women to pay as much as $1,000 more per month for maternity care) and the disastrous new budget proposal (which explicitly denies federal funding to Planned Parenthood for services including cervical cancer screenings) comes a brand-new “f-you” to women: The federal government on Monday created an official rule that could almost immediately enact President Trump’s recent “religious freedom” executive order. Signed earlier this month, the measure would allow employers to opt out of the Affordable Care Act’s free birth control mandate if they feel it is in violation of their religious beliefs. Recall craft store chain Hobby Lobby, which won a 2014 Supreme Court case on the matter, allowing it to deny its employees birth control because its owners are Evangelical Christians (and forever cementing this writer’s love for Michaels).

Trump’s executive order appeased religious groups, but it stands to imperil women’s reproductive rights across the country. The ACA’s birth control mandate benefited 50 million women in making contraception affordable, The New York Times reported, citing Democrats’ estimates. Now Trump’s rollback (which will face inevitable legal challenges from women’s groups) “is a direct attack on women’s access to birth control,” Dawn Laguens, executive vice president of Planned Parenthood Federation of America, said in a statement following the executive order. “A woman’s health should not be up to her boss or politicians.”


With a known misogynistic leader, it seems that America is progressing backward for the entire world to see. Not only does he implement controversial policies that don’t seem to benefit the rest of the American population and may even harm the planet over time (think of the Paris Climate Agreement), his chauvinistic behavior will perhaps make it impossible for him to achieve his goal of making America great again. There is still a lot of work left to be done. It is why women advocates try to make as much noise as they can to highlight these violations against women even though the struggle is real every single day.

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The Pros Of Going To IT Conferences


The world is continually changing. Nothing was and is ever constant. Everyone and everything keeps on evolving as the years go by. These changes are even more evident when it comes to information technology. Everything is high-tech now. And one thing is for sure, whatever technology we now have will definitely get better as the years pass by.

The best place to learn about these tech advancements is attending IT conferences. You’d get the chance to see first-hand up and coming technologies and futuristic innovations that are not yet available to the public. Concepts and theories come to life during these conferences and you can have a new appreciation for technology once more. It’s really different seeing something for real than just hearing about it during discussions and academic arguments. Aside from that, you can also rub elbows with like-minded individuals who have a thirst for knowledge and want to know all about the latest advancements even before they are officially launched to the public.

For the first time in years, Apple Inc. will use its annual developer conference to tout not just its software, but hardware too.

When the Worldwide Developers Conference kicks off Monday in San Jose, California, the iPhone maker is likely to unveil iPads and Mac laptops along with new versions of the operating systems for those devices, according to people familiar with the plans. Cook may even lift the cover on a smart speaker based on the Siri virtual assistant.

It will be the first time Apple has presented new hardware at the conference since 2013. Chief Executive Officer Tim Cook has for more than a year been showcasing the strength of Apple’s services businesses, such as the App Store and iCloud storage, in part a reflection of a dearth of new blockbuster gadgets and slowing growth for Apple’s flagship product, the iPhone. Now as the device pipeline fills, the company is shining more of the spotlight on hardware to woo the developers needed to create accompanying apps.

The company will also try to win over programmers with updates to Apple’s operating systems for computers, mobile devices, Apple TV and Watch.


You’ll be surprised at how much you can actually learn during these conferences and take your career to the next level. Taking a break from the usual daily grind can renew your interest and passion for your craft, so you come back to work with a renewed sense of purpose and have more creative juices flowing into your veins.

Benefits of Attending Professional Conferences

Our presentation will be one of hundreds of other panels and presentations that will cover various topics related to current issues in the criminal justice system. Attending professional conferences provides an opportunity to explore various areas of interest and learn more about the pressing issues surrounding the criminal justice field today. Often times, attending sessions will encourage you to think about other areas of research and topics in a way that you may not have previously considered.

In addition to the opportunity to showcase and get feedback on your work, conferences are also extremely beneficial for getting face-to-face time with other researchers from other parts of the country. In doing so, there is often an opportunity to make connections, collaborate and explore evidence-based practices that can help solve some of the current issues facing the field of criminal justice. I cannot think of a better way to feel as though you are making a real difference.


Take the opportunity to collaborate with fellow professionals and scholars and grow your network of professionals, an opportunity you don’t usually get if you are all holed up in the office. And reconnecting with them after the conference is made easier now with the help of social media. You can get selfies with these people and tag them on Facebook or Instagram, perhaps, for a sure-fire way to stay connected with them through the years or even strengthen existing relationships with professionals you already know of but seldom see in person.

Many companies also bring with them actual samples of new products that attendees can check out up close. The web may be your oyster but it is easy to get lost with the vast amount of data it holds. Attending IT conferences in your field or a related career will help streamline what content to watch out for and how you can benefit from it instead of feeling lost as you explore the many corners of the web. Most of all, attending these events is a great way to improve yourself and learn all the newest technologies while having fun with others who share the same interests as you.

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Smoking Pot For Leisure Is Now Legal



Smoking pot is frowned upon in most societies for years now. It is considered illegal, which is why many people smoke it away from the prying eyes of the public than risk being caught, reprimanded, and persecuted. Generally called as pot, it actually is marijuana leaves or cannabis that is often smoked by people. Cannabis oil and flowers can also be used and its smoke or vapor is inhaled and is consequently absorbed into the bloodstream. You can also put it under your tongue or apply it on your skin aside from smoking and still enjoy the same high results.

Pot smokers smoke cannabis using bowls or bongs or in a cigarette form. Recent discoveries show that cannabis can help treat various medical conditions, which is why medical cannabis is gaining popularity in various US states and even countries abroad. However, it is not a perfect science and there are many contradictions to these findings that lead to confusion and conflicts. It’s the reason that up to now, legalizing marijuana use still raises the eyebrows of many and remains to be the subject of on-going debates.

Vermont’s Legislature become the first in the nation Wednesday to approve a recreational marijuana legalization bill.

Vermont’s bill, which would legalize small amounts of marijuana possession in 2018 and anticipate the possibility of a taxed and regulated legal marijuana market, was approved in the Vermont House of Representatives on Wednesday afternoon by a vote of 79-66. The state Senate already passed the bill, so it will go directly to GOP Gov. Phil Scott.

Eight states — Alaska, California, Colorado, Maine, Massachusetts, Nevada, Oregon and Washington — and the District of Columbia have legalized marijuana following a voter referendum, but no state yet has legalized marijuana solely through the legislative process, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures. Legalization advocates said bills were pending in other state legislatures.


While smoking pot is now legal in many states in America, you still have to be an adult or 21 years old and above to be able to smoke it for leisure. You can even grow marijuana on your own (a maximum of six plants per adult) if you aren’t comfortable buying your weed fix in special stores. And while it is already legal, it does not mean you can smoke it anywhere you want because there would likely be legal sanctions, especially when done in public areas.

California may become the first “sanctuary state” in the country for pot smokers after a new piece of legislation was sent to the Senate Monday.

The marijuana bill proposed by Democrat Assemblyman Reggie Jones Sawyer passed through the assembly Friday and is now in the hands of the Senate Public Safety Committee, LA Weekly reported Monday.

The bill would prevent state and local law enforcement from helping enforce federal drug laws against residents who, while breaking federal marijuana law, are in compliance with California law.

The Drug Policy Alliance, a lobbying group in support of the bill, said the legislation is the result of states’ growing fears that the Department of Justice will crack down on marijuana nationally under Attorney General Jeff Sessions.


Not only in California, other states like Colorado and Oregon are also coming up with bills to protect both weed growers and users, whether for medical or recreational use despite the threats of Trump and Session to sue or even deport citizens who get caught with marijuana in their possession.

Canada’s medical cannabis growers now supply about 170,000 patients, and many producers regularly sell out or run short of strains, says Aaron Salz. He was the first investment analyst on Bay Street to specialize in Canada’s cannabis industry, and is now a consultant to some of the big growers. 

The industry won’t be able to expand quickly enough to immediately supply all the Canadians who might want to buy recreational marijuana, he says.

Between four million and six million Canadians will use cannabis recreationally next year, says Health Canada, drawing on estimates from both government and private sources.

In 13 months, when “the taps are turned on” for legal recreational pot, says Salz, “We are going to have a supply shortage. I’m highly confident of that.”


Not only is the legalization of smoking recreational marijuana making waves in America but even to the nearby country of Canada as well as the possibility of using it in the field of medicine and science. However, you just can’t easily say yes to cannabis legalization because it still has to undergo a stringent process but it is pretty obvious that there is a growing demand for it as well. Today, legislators are doubling their efforts in getting it legalized and in approving licenses to ensure that the weed industry can also meet the demand for weed that will only get bigger and bigger as the years pass by.

Smoking Pot For Leisure Is Now Legal is republished from Blog


Making A Career Out Of Playing Video Games


Education is crucial to one’s success. However, other opportunities have also opened up for people who are gutsy enough to take risks and take the less traveled road. Parents used to reprimand their kids who got hooked on video games saying that they can’t make a career out of it. Who would’ve thought you can make a fortune just from playing video games now? It was probably unheard of back then but it is a reality for some really talented and skilled video game player now.

Professional video game players are such a hit now because of technological advancements that make the world go round today. And you are not just limited to becoming a DOTA player, for instance. You can also make money by developing new gaming technologies or sell it if you have the flair of a salesman. You have to be genuinely interested in the technology itself and know your way on the screen using a game console.

Attention Indiana Tech is looking for video game superstars who aren’t necessarily the Mountain Dew-drinking, Cheetos-eating, stay up with the lights off until 3 a.m. stereotype. But they’re welcome, too.

The university has made video gaming a varsity sport starting this fall and is actively recruiting players of two games, League of Legends and Hearthstone.

And, attention parents: Indiana Tech is offering scholarships to gamers with the right stuff.

The new collegiate sport, taking hold at a handful of other universities around the country, can be traced to a modest beginning at Indiana Tech in 2015.

What started as a club team in a hot basement with a tangle of extension cords has now been elevated to a gaming arena with custom-made gaming stations, state-of-the-art gaming chairs and a coach’s office.


And to ease the worries of most parents, there is indeed a future in video games. The world is different now and your children who are obsessed with these virtual playthings can make a living out of it too as players themselves and even get an education too at the same time.

Don’t be too hard on a kid playing video games for hours on end. He or she may be working toward a very lucrative career.

Video gaming is making some young people very very rich. One of the most successful gamers, a guy who goes by the online name “PewDiePie” earns an estimated $7 million dollars a year playing games like “League of Legends”. He’s 26 years old.

“A professional e­sports player in the world today makes as much as any major athlete in any major sport,” says Robert Rippee the director of a new e­sports lab at the University of Nevada Las Vegas.

“We’re going to explore the concepts around e­sports and how to integrate them into here, you know, the large casino environment.”

UNLV is one of many colleges and universities adding e­sports to campus life, whether that’s in courses or sanctioned teams. Robert Morris University is offering scholarships to video game players after it added e­sports to the athletic program along with football and basketball.


A typical video gamer can elevate their social status in life by taking a career in this $5-billion industry. Even in Youtube, vloggers earn money from people who watch their videos of them playing video games. Huh? Yes, it is a thing now. Others are even more ambitious such as the Korean “League of Legend” tournament which sold out 88,000 tickets from people wanting to see 10 video gamers play on the big screen. No more questions asked.

If you don’t have a knack for playing itself, you can find an equally lucrative career as a video game developer. Not only are your platforms limited to typical video game gadgets themselves since you can also tap the smartphone market too. As long as you have the passion and skill in playing video games, you can be successful in this field even though it probably isn’t the dream of your parents for you. The point is you succeeded.

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Doing Retail On Amazon


Business is a risky endeavor. Sometimes you hit the jackpot, most of the time you don’t. And it is undoubtedly such a big market in America. Over 24 million people make money from retailing, so the competition is tough, to say the least. When you think of retailing, you often relate it to fashion and apparel when the truth is that almost all sorts of goods and services are provided by the retail industry. Examples of which are electronics, appliances, auto parts, food and even other aspects of skilled labor.

An entrepreneur can build a retailing empire in the world today because it is one of the fastest growing sectors in the market. As long as you can offer the consumers something they need or possibly want, you can make it big. Unfortunately, competition is tough as already stated above. Some risks pay off while others can lead to bankruptcy. Many physical stores are actually closing today because people rarely shop in malls these days. They prefer doing it online like almost everyone else does.

 Amazon recently posted its eighth straight quarter of growth. In fact, in the first quarter of 2017 its revenue grew by a jaw-dropping 23 percent, hitting net income of $724 million. Amazon Prime subscribership jumped to over 80 million members, representing a gravity-defying increase of 36 percent. And, while slowing marginally, Amazon Web Services, the company’s cloud computing cash cow, continued to post growth in the mid-40 percent range, giving Amazon plenty of cash to burn on furious innovation.

For one, Amazon continues to expand the capabilities of its Alexa Voice Service, the operating platform of its popular Echo digital assistant, a technology that not-so-subtly aims to disintermediate not only Google but every retailer on the planet from the consumer product search process, 55 percent of which already defaults to Amazon.


Amazon sold apparel, shoes, appliances, and many other knick-knacks for a while now. Amazon has indeed mastered the art of online retailing. However, you’d rarely hear people bragging about how much they enjoy shopping on Amazon. Sure, you find a lot of great finds but it can be laborious and somehow stressful trying to look for a great deal in the vast assortment of products sold on Amazon. However, online shopping took out the fun in retail therapy that people used to love.

The arrival of Amazon will be an existential moment for some retailers and it will almost certainly trigger of wave of industry rationalisation. But it will also have a Darwinian flavour – a test of adaptive skills and survival of the fittest.

Since the US e-commerce giant last month formally announced its intention to expand in Australia, there has been a rash of analysis on the extent of the damage Cyclone Amazon will inflict on the retail sector, most of which has been extrapolated from its arrival in other countries.

For Australian retailers, the entry of Amazon will have a greater effect than the imposition of the goods and services tax or even the more gradual entry of online competitors.

A report from international ratings agency Standard & Poor’s in May sums it up, saying “the tide of change that began with internet commerce has built into a tsunami called the Amazon Effect, resulting in bricks and mortar retailers shrinking their physical footprints while focusing on shifting more business online or risking being relegated to the remainder bin of retail history”.


Amazon got retailing figured down to a science. If you think selling your own stuff by yourself is quite a challenge, selling through Amazon gives you a better chance of being seen by consumers and eventually making a sale. The network of retailers is vast (with over two million retailers – both big and small brands) and you can surely find something that will interest the consumers.

Getting your product sold is quite simple. Just list down your product on the site and consumers will likely find it there despite the long list of competition. Yet despite it all, businesses have been moving their products and making profits. Retailers can even opt for the Fulfillment by Amazon service where Amazon will do absolutely everything for retailers for a total hassle-free selling.

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The Artistry Of Art Aloud


Most of us associate the arts to actual artworks and art pieces commonly seen in museums and parks. But what many are not aware of is that there are different forms of artistic expressions. The truth is that there is no limitation when it comes to the art. Artists are free to express their artistic talents and share them with the world. As the world becomes globally interconnected, we realize how diverse we all are in different aspects of life. An example of which is Art Aloud, an art to poetry collaboration.

While many of you probably haven’t heard of such a collab, it has been happening for ten years already in some states in the U.S. and even in other countries throughout the world. Artistic poetry is a great way to revive the interest and passion in poetry in a very artsy way.

The idea came into being thanks to Paul Dahlston and the Big Picture Discussion Group, a cadre of artists and thinkers who used to meet at the Business of Art Center (now the Manitou Art Center). Even after the group disbanded a few years ago, a few dedicated community members kept Art Aloud alive.

Cas Foste of Academy Art & Frame Company, who now organizes Art Aloud, says: “We get some really dynamic stuff, and we are totally all about collaborations, getting writers and artists to work together on pieces.”

Art Aloud began as a strict art-to-poetry collaboration, but over the years it has evolved to include all manner of written word, from quotes to short stories. Writing hangs alongside the artwork with which it’s connected (or, in some cases, is incorporated into the artwork) and weekly receptions throughout the month include a reading component similar to an open mic.


During this coming Lent, artistic poetry is also a great way to relive the life of Christ. The Church regularly conducts this artistic poetry practice to remind all of the sacrifices of Jesus on Calvary and on the cross and His gift of salvation to the world. Aside from artistic poetry, you can also see many works of arts displayed in churches the world over housed in churches that are centuries old.

Experience Jesus’ last week through word, art and scripture at Christ the King Lutheran on Palm Sunday, April 9.

Worship services will be at 9 and 10:30 a.m. at 1301 Sebastian Blvd., Sebastian.

Special artwork by Sebastian resident Dave Sandgren and his mother Nancy Sandgren will be exhibited during the service. Each primarily black and white artwork will be unveiled as writings about it are read aloud. The art depicts Jesus last week on earth, from his triumphant entrance into Jerusalem on the lowly donkey to his death on the cross and then his glorious resurrection on Easter.

The special service starts outdoors with the processional gospel and the blessing of the palms.

Later in the week will be the Maundy Thursday worship service at 7:30 pm.

“The term ‘Maundy’ refers to Jesus’ command to love as he shared his last meal with the disciples,” said the Rev. Karen Leedahl. Following Holy Communion, the service will conclude with stripping of the worship space of all adornment in preparation for Good Friday.

On Good Friday, Christ the King is offering the special Holy Week Experience. Participants can arrive anytime between noon and 5 p.m. to visit different meditation points. At each point there will be scripture to read, a question to contemplate, and/or an activity in which to participate. Seating will be provided at each stop. Worshipers proceed at their own pace.


The arts have a big impact on our daily lives even though many of us are oblivious to it most of the time. Nations have been formed greatly in part because of the influence of the culture and the arts and many great works of arts also serve as reminders of how people lived over the years. From cave paintings to sculptures, body art and body paintings and piercing, renowned artwork in museums, all these artistic expressions define society over a period of time and continue to do so until now.

Nowadays, you can go to museums to witness for yourself artwork made by great masters who have long been gone or more modern celebration of the arts through poetry in motion.

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