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Deals on Reliant Energy for Dallas Area

I have had to relocate across the state of Texas, to Dallas, where I have purchased a new house for myself. I am excited about the new opportunities that await my family and I. However, moving is always a hassle, and there are a lot of things that need to be taken care of in the near future. I would like to start to find info about reliant energy in dallas and how much their electricity tends to cost per kilowatt-hour.

Since I am moving from a pretty remote part of the state, the electricity provider that I used to use, is not represented in the group of electricity providers that I have to choose from in Dallas. I was going to just stick with my old provider, if possible, because they had always treated me right, and that seemed to be the most simple solution to the issue. However, since that is not a possibility, I am going to have to figure out something else.

I asked a few of my friends, to try to get their recommendations for electricity companies, and most of them told me that they used Reliant Energy. I do not know if that means it is actually a good company, but I guess I will start there in my search for an electricity provider. I hope that they have good rates, that are at least as good as the other companies in the area, because I do not want to pay any more than I have to on electricity. I just think it is a good deal to get the best price on this sort of utility, because it is not like the service could possibly vary all that much between different companies. I guess there might be some other aspects that a few people consider in their decision.

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Best Power Companies for Fort Worth Area

My family just recently moved to the Fort Worth area. I never really thought that I would end up living in Texas, because it is not the type of climate that I prefer. There are some political reasons why I had never considered living in Texas either. However, I had a great job opportunity in the area, and I had to jump on it. I want to start to learn about first choice power in fort worth to see what I can learn about this energy provider, and the services that they provide.

I spent awhile asking some of my neighbors about the energy company that they used, and I got a few different answers. I was not expecting that, but I am from a part of the country where electricity companies are regulated by the government, and there is only one electricity provider to choose from in any given area. Continue reading

node

Node It

When you first look at it, the Node looks like a mini flashlight that seems to be ridiculous for a $149 price point but in reality is a sensor that can measure almost ANYTHING. This article written by Julianne Pepitone is basically a review of all these functions that a Node can do. The first function that I found interesting was the ability to test surface temperatures through a laser sensor, you can check if you have a fever simply by pointing a laser at your head and the temperature pops up at you. This is probably really useful for ghost hunters in cases which temperature jumps based off where the supernatural are. Another sensor called Chroma seems to be the answer for those inquisitive people searching for a color. Basically how it works is that if you put the sensor on top of a color, it tells you what color it is with a 99.99% accuracy. Now you will finally know what a true red really is! But in reality, if you forget what color you painted your walls and wish to repaint, this is a perfect tool to help you find your way. Another sensor that you can add on to this remarkable device is Oxa, a tool that can give you the amount of carbon monoxide in the air along with amount of chlorine or hydrogen gas. This really is quite a breakthrough in the consumer electronic world.  

Variable Tech, the company behind Node, refers to its creation as “the Swiss Army knife of sensors.” The base model, which sells for $149, can be coupled with add-on sensors to record data about moisture, colors, temperatures and more.

Node is the project of George Yu, a former contractor at NASA and the Department of Homeland Security whoused Kickstarter to raise $76,000. That cash funded the first manufacturing run for his Chattanooga, Tenn., company.

The Node is now in full production, and Yu showed it off at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas (CES) last week.

“It’s a highly flexible, advanced, sophisticated tool that will advance as time goes by,” Yu said.

He’s right — but that complexity makes Node a bit confusing to explain. The $149 entry-level Kore module is the size and shape of a roll of quarters. It includes the basic Node components: an accelerometer, magnetometer and gyroscope, plus a battery and 2 MB of memory.

Users can buy extra sensors to use Node in other ways: to test hot cooking surfaces, measure motions, or blast a bright light.

Node pairs with Apple (AAPLFortune 500) iOS devices through a Bluetooth connection, and uses Variable’s official app (or third-party apps that use the company’s integration hooks) to display, record, and email the data. Android support is forthcoming.

So far, the base Kore and five extremely varied sensors are available.

Kore: The unit’s 3-axis sensors — gyroscope, magnetometer and accelerometer — each maps to a graph on Node’s app that updates in near real-time.

Yu showed off the motion-sensing power of the accelerometer during his demo: He gripped the Node, and an animated block on the app moved in tandem with the slightest twitch of his hand. It could be used as a motion-based remote control, he suggested, or by physical therapists to test their patients’ fine motor skills.

Node can be set to alert users when it starts or stops moving. Put it on top of your dryer and it can send you a message when the cycle is done.

Chroma: The $75 Chroma sensor screws onto the Node and captures “true colors” with 99.99% accuracy. See a color that you’d love to paint on your wall? Place the Node against the item, and the Chroma sensor will spit out the color values in CMYK and other formats.

A third-party app will show you the closest paint swatch from brands like Behr and Martha Stewart.

Therma: The Therma, which also sells for $75, uses an infrared sensor to check the temperature of items that can’t be touched or reached: the heat of heavy machinery, or areas of the home that may be poorly insulated.

Clima: This $50 sensor detects barometric pressure, ambient light, wind speed, temperature, and humidity. A hiker can check her elevation while moving up a mountain, or a contractor could test the humidity level in a client’s basement.

Luma: Node bills the Luma as a “state-of-the-art flashlight” that uses eight LED lights. Users can select how many lights to turn on and assign them a flashing pattern. It’s not nearly as varied as the other sensors, but it’s also significantly cheaper at $25.

Oxa: Yu wasn’t able to demo the Oxa at CES: It’s an industrial-grade gas sensor. The default Oxa, priced at $149, senses carbon monoxide. Other, separate sensors detect chlorine, nitric oxide, hydrogen and other gases. They’re currently available for pre-order and should ship in 3-4 weeks.

Apple

Apple is King

Doesn’t it seem to surprise you just how many inventions come out for the iPhone? I this I that, all these products that sometimes seem utterly useless yet some products are simple remarkable business ideas that you wonder why you didn’t come out with them yourself. This article about the CES or Consumer Electronic Show is written by Alexandra Chang about the presence of Apple all over CES despite the fact that the company itself does not even attend. The CES actually has an entire lounge dedicated to Apple accessories but personally I don’t think the CES is going to thrive due to all the fallouts lately. Apple dropped out in 1992 but recently Microsoft also choose to drop out leaving the CES as a show full of unique innovation that aren’t really “brand name”. Yet, the question arises, why are apple accessories so popular? What makes them so attractive to all the companies that are looking to start a new invention? Well the answer is in the design. To create a product in the android market you must make it of all sorts of shapes and sizes to fit all the different designs of the phones. Meanwhile in the Apple market you only need to create 3 different types of accessories to accommodate the IPhone 3, 4, and 5. Personally I think Apple has established itself as one of the biggest players in the electronics industry and will be a powerhouse for many years to come.

“LAS VEGAS (CNN) — For a company that hasn’t attended CES since 1992, Apple dominates the show.
You can’t walk more than a dozen feet here at the Las Vegas Convention Center without seeing an iGadget or iAccessory of some kind. Apple’s overwhelming presence by proxy is impressive, and underscores the immense place the company occupies in the consumer electronics sector.
Of the 3,000 or so exhibitors here at CES, nearly 500 reside in the iLounge pavilion, a section dedicated specifically to Apple-related products. And then there are the hundreds of audio, automotive, health, gaming, and accessory companies hawking iOS and Mac peripherals.
There are more iPhone and iPad adaptors, docks and dongles than you could possibly imagine. Vendors are showing off iPad camera rigs, solar-powered Mac batteries and even an iPhone-connected plant sensor. And then there’s the sea of bedazzled and bedecked iPhone and iPad cases.
The biggest reason for this is, of course, Apple’s dominating presence in the consumer electronic space. It’s a lot easier for startups and established players alike to ride Apple’s coattails than those of, say, Google or Microsoft.

Another advantage to going down the iRoute is Apple’s tight focus on a few products and form factors. It’s far easier to tailor accessories to Apple than anyone else.
“Accessory makers can reach virtually the entire installed base of iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch owners with two products, determined by the connector,” the 30 pin or Lightning, said Charles Govin, an industry analyst with Forrester. “Similarly, a case maker must create many SKUs for the Android market, but essentially only three (iPhone 3G, 4, and 5) for the entire iPhone market.”
The relative ease with which companies can develop peripherals for Apple is made all the more appealing by the fact Apple customers have proven themselves only too happy to shell out money to accessorize their iDevices.
“Apple owners have a demonstrated willingness to spend for accessories, cases, and other customizations,” Govin said. “Essentially, the potential return on investment is more promising for Apple-related products.”
CES also shows just how willing people are to build on Apple’s iconic “i” branding. There’s iLounge, iBattz, iSkin, iConnectivity, iPort and even iCat all within a few feet of each other on the show floor. Spend five minutes walking the floor and it becomes clear there’s no need for Apple to be here. Hundreds of companies are only too happy to carry Cupertino’s banner.
Apple’s presence here has grown rapidly. In the three years since the iLounge Pavilion launched, the space has quadrupled to 120,000 square feet, all but taking over an entire hall and pushing the automotive industry into another space.
But does anyone wish Apple were actually here? Not really.
“I don’t care,” said Raymond Meng, president of iSmartAlarm. His company is releasing an iPhone-controlled home alarm system, which Meng says was inspired by the burglary of Steve Jobs’ house this summer. Meng said that it doesn’t matter that Apple isn’t at CES with a booth or keynote, because CES is already the most successful and popular show for companies like his.
Cheng, from Just Mobile, agrees. “At this point, I don’t think Apple needs to be here,” he said. “They have their own events and that works for them.”
Just Mobile already has eight products in the Apple Store and uses CES to expand into the international market and meet clients. As for meetings with Apple, “We visit them at their campus,” Cheng said.
Of course, CES could be a much hotter destination if it had the hottest tech company involved. With Microsoft dropping out, CES is losing even more of its sizzle. But the CEA, the organization that puts on the show, says that Apple skipping out isn’t a big deal.
“Apple is a CEA member. It’s just there prerogative to not exhibit and they’ve found it more cost effective to host their own events,” CEA spokeswoman Danielle Cassagnol said. “They’ve never keynoted or exhibited at CES, so them not being here isn’t really a loss for us.”
That’s not entirely true, since Apple did introduce the Newton at CES in 1992, but perhaps the CEA wants to forget this fact. But the fact remains that Apple and its products are the widely seen, and discussed, at CES. It’s here, even if it isn’t.
“They have employees that attend the show, so in that way, Apple sort of is here,” Cassognal said.”

DNA

DNA

What are genes? What is their function?

Have you ever wondered what our life would be without instructions? What are we to do if our teachers or parents weren’t there to guide us and tell us what to do? As teenagers, we would not have direction or purpose to what we were doing without someone to guide us. Using this analogy, this is the function genes serve as.

Genes are instruction manuals in the form of DNA. They direct protein synthesis, which is essential for our body functions. Without genes, these proteins would not be processed. Gene expression is the method through which DNA directs protein synthesis. There are two stages in gene expression called transcription and translation. A gene does not make protein directly, but through RNA. As we may know or don’t know, through looking at the picture above, each nucleotide has Adenine, Guanine, Thymine and Cytosine acting as a base pair. You can also notice that Adenine pairs with Thymine and Guanine with Cytosine, creating that “base pair”. RNA is almost similar in bases, except instead of Thymine, RNA includes Uracil. These base pairs also create codons, which help identify the mRNA codon, or Messenger RNA, which helps DNA send information to other parts of the cell. The codons are in triplets and help identify genetic material. For example, AUG is a start codon, which helps show where the genetic message begins and UGA, UUA, UAG shows where it ends.
What is transcription?

Transcription is the first step in the process to which DNA directs protein synthesis or gene expression. It synthesizes RNA under the direction of DNA. Messenger RNA, DNA’s messenger that contains information, is transcribed from a template strand of a gene. There are three steps in the process of transcription: initiation, elongation, and termination.

The first step starts with initiation. In initiation, RNA polymerase binds to the promoter of the DNA transcription unit. The promoter is the sequence of the transcription unit that initiates transcription. RNA polymerase is an enzyme that binds to the promoter only in the 5’ to 3’ direction that initiates RNA synthesis (if you do not know what the 5’ to 3’ direction means you may have to refresh your memory on DNA structure).

The second step is elongation. In this step, RNA polymerase moves downstream and uncoils the DNA and elongates RNA transcript. The RNA transcript then binds to the DNA template strand by base pairing using nucleotides. Eventually, the double helix form of DNA reforms.

The final step is termination. Now, the termination step is exactly how it sounds based off of its definition. During this time, the RNA transcript is released and the RNA polymerase detaches from the DNA transcription unit. The product at the end of transcription is a new, completed RNA transcript that will be used for initiation.

What is translation?

During translation, a cell recognizes a genetic message and builds a polypeptide according to the genetic information. This happens in the ribosome. The message is a series of codons. There are codons and anticodons. tRNA or Transfer RNA is an interpreter, which contains anticodons, that has a job to transfer amino acids from the cytoplasm full of amino acids to the ribosome. The ribosome adds each amino acid that each tRNA carries to create a polypeptide chain.

Please refer to the picture for some guidance. In the binding site of the ribosome, there are several parts of it. There are two subunits; a large subunit and the small subunit. The small subunit is located in the bottom of the ribosome and has an mRNA binding site in it. In between the large subunit and the small subunit are the three tRNA binding sites: E site, P sites, and A site. The A site is the accepting site, which recognizes tRNA and takes it in by base pairing tRNA’s anticodon with mRNA’s codon. Once the tRNA is attached to the A site, it shifts over to the P site and the A site accepts another tRNA. During this time, an rRNA (ribosomal RNA) catalyzes the formation of a peptide bond between the new amino acid in the A site with the growing polypeptide chain of the P site. Once the amino acid attaches to the polypeptide chain, the tRNA done its job and moves to the E site or Exit site and leaves the ribosome.

What is the difference between eukaryotes and prokaryotes in protein production?

The difference between gene expression in eukaryotic cells and prokaryotic cells is that eukaryotes have something called RNA processing. RNA processing happens after transcription and before translation. During this process, enzymes modify the two ends of a eukaryotic pre-mRNA molecule. The modified ends help promote the export of mRNA from the nucleus. In the pre-mRNA molecule, you have something called 5’ cap and on the other end a poly-A tail. In between them are segments of the nucleic acid called introns and exons. Using a technique called RNA splicing, the introns of the pre-mRNA are “spliced out” and the exons attach together.

You are probably wondering why are the introns spliced out. This is because introns are the noncoding segments of nucleic acid. The exons are translated into amino acid sequences. Introns need to be spliced in order to have a continuous codon sequence in the mRNA molecule.

 Review on Genes

Now you should have a good idea of a gene’s role. We know that gene expression is almost the same when observing eukaryotes, in contrast to prokaryotes. They each have transcription and translation. The difference is in RNA processing that occurs only in eukaryotes. This is because eukaryotes contain a nucleus, while prokaryotes do not. The end product of this rRNA processing is and mRNA, which only contains exons. A typical gene is expressed by transcription into RNA and then translation into a polypeptide that forms a protein of a certain structure and function. Those proteins formed go forth to bring about an organism’s phenotype (to refresh your memory, a phenotype is structured in a way to reveal an organism’s characteristics or traits).

Emotions

Emotions

Emotions may be one of the most significant factors in deciding how your life plays out. Recent studies done within the last year proclaim emotions are important factors in a wide variety of things, which range from medicine all the way to investment banking.  Emotions are defined as a “complex psychophysiological experience of an individual’s state of mind as interacting with biochemical (internal) and environmental (external) influences (David Myers, Psychology 7th Edition)

New studies have helped clear up the perception that only humans have emotions. In fact, a very recent study claims that rats actually demonstrate empathy and unselfishness towards other rats that are stuck in traps. In this study done by Jaak Panksepp of Washington State University, he writes that “by taking animal emotions seriously, you can develop new medicines.” In order to conduct his experiment, Mr. Panksepp and researches in the University of Chicago took two mated rats who knew each other. When one of the rats’ were stuck in a narrow tube, thus simulating a trap, the other rat would immediately try to help his friend escape.

The key to understanding emotions is to understand where they come from, thus evoking the everlasting Nature vs. Nurture debate. However, a study done by researchers from Duke University and Kings College London suggests that emotions may be driven partly by genes. These researches discovered that people who develop emotional problems, such as depression, due to bullying actually have a variation in the same gene. In a 10 year study done of 2,232 same sex twins, it has been found that people who were bullied and then developed emotional problems all have slight variations in the 5-HTTLPR gene, specifically the SS genotype. This gene appears to be the cause behind emotional responses that lead to problems such as being bipolar and depressed. It was also seen that the more frequently the person was bullied, the stronger the response due to the gene- i.e. the more frequently one was bullied the stronger their problems appeared to be. Further supporting this conclusion is the fact that people who were bullied, but did not develop emotional problems did not have the variation in the 5-HTTLPR gene.

Your environment, however, may affect you more than you think. Another recent study shows that teens who abuse drugs have a very difficult time identifying the emotion on a person’s face. This may explain why these teens never seem to understand the way that their parents feel based on their parents facial expressions. Spanish scientists from the University of Granada analyzed the relation between drug abuse and recognition of basic emotions and were amazed to find out the drug abusers had an extremely difficult time identifying which emotion was which from the facial expressions.  It was also shown that these people also had trouble in making decisions, reasoning and memory. To conduct this experiment,” a total of 123 polysubstance abusers and 67 no-drug users with similar social and demographic backgrounds” were used. As stated by the head of the research, Dr. J.M. Fernández Serrano, the results  “[could] be employed to develop political and social policies aimed at promoting adequate rehab programs adapted to the neuropsychological profile of drug-abusers.”

Emotions do more than just make us feel one way or another, they are one of the primary driving force for our actions. Even investment bankers, it appears, rely more on emotions than facts when it comes to making their decisions.  In a paper titled, “Once Burned, Twice Shy: How Naïve Learning, Counterfactuals, and Regret Affect the Repurchase of Stocks Previously Sold,” co-authored by Brad M. Barber, a professor in the UC Davis Graduate School of Management; Terrance Odean, a UC Berkeley professor; and Michal Strahilevitz, a Golden Gate University professor, it has been shown that investors rely heavily on the feelings of regret, disappointment, pride, and contentment. In a massive study of 662,779 households over an 8 year period, it was found that regret in selling a stock too early led to the repurchase of the stock if it came back to the value they had sold it at. The researchers examined each day that each person purchased a stock and they also saw if the person had sold the same stock for a loss or gain over the past 252 trading days. It was found that the investors preferred to re-buy stocks that had been profitable in the past, but also stocks that had gained value after they sold it. It seems that the investors are driven by a desire to avoid the emotions of regret and feel the emotions of pride.