Traveling Can Mean Cash For You

tcmcYears ago, when I began writing travel stories, I figured I’d simply turn my vacations into research trips. It never occurred to me that editors might decide to send me somewhere. But then it happened!

And, like me, you might receive a call someday asking you to represent a publication on a press trip. Similar to the “fam” or familiarization trips that travel agents take, a press trip involves traveling with a group of writers or media people. Such trips are usually sponsored by government tourist boards, hotel properties or their public relations firms. Such a group will have a product to promote–whether it’s a city, an island or an elegant high-rise hotel–and you’re that group’s link to the public.

When it …

How to Buy Your Food Processor

KitchenAid's Pro Line is a serious attractive appliance.
KitchenAid’s Pro Line is a serious attractive appliance.

The food processor is among the best home appliances you can ever invest money on. There are different brands available in the market and you can go for any that suits your taste the best. They are designed differently and you may want to keep this in mind when buying one for your kitchen. It is true that they are designed differently, but they have similar functions. They can help in slicing, mincing and shredding the fruits and vegetables you feed into them. Aside the above, they also perform various processing. The design of the particular type of food processor is determined by the manufacturer. Some food processors are rather big in size, while …

Talking Bio-Research

talkgbiorIn fact, you should know that impediments to creating a biotech spinoff are being overcome at an impressive rate. A recent study by the Center for Economic Policy Research at Stanford Univ. found that “biotechnology stands out almost uniquely” as an academic source of practical inventions. “There is an unusually close proximity between basic research and commercialization” in biotech, says Nathan Rosenberg, principal author of the study, titled “American Universities and Technical Advance in Industry.”

Or, as one bemused researcher at Harvard Medical School put it: “To be anybody in biotech anymore, you have to have your own company.”

So how do you start? It’s a good bet you’ve already picked out a company name with “bio,” “pharm,” or “gen” appearing someplace …

Product Development Mysteries Solved

ahtliDuring a trip through Silicon Valley late last summer, we spoke with the CEOs and other upper-level managers at three of the largest and most visible companies in the American high-tech laser industry. Our question was, simply, whether technical innovation will be the companies’ primary driving force as the 21st century approaches.

None of these people came close to denying the importance of new technology to the survival of their companies. The answers to our basic question, however, boiled down to an unexpected but emphatic negative.

If that sounds only slightly less incredible than reports that cheap, clean, unlimited energy from cold fusion will soon heat your home, have a look at these snippets from the tape-recorded interviews:

Pat Edsell, president of …

Sematech Turned A Lot Of Heads

settalomSematech could not possibly have accomplished that mission, given its funding level–and it didn’t. The U.S. semiconductor industry did return to world leadership in the manufacture of both semiconductors and semiconductor processing equipment, but Sematech was not crucial to either accomplishment, although it certainly did play an important supporting role.

Why did Sematech take on a mission that it could not accomplish? Why did it initially swagger about like an Arnold Schwarzenegger-style action hero, when it was more like Danny DeVito in size? Because it really thought it was Schwarzenegger.

This brings us to the first lesson that Sematech can teach us about taking the consortium approach to increased competitiveness: Initial planning can be pivotal. Inadequacies here may haunt you for years …

Future Traffic Planning Took Shape In The 1990s

otsgnlsStarting in March 1992 and concluding in March 1993, it consisted of 100 Oldsmobile Toronados driven by local residents and car rental customers. Each car was fitted with an on-board computer loaded with Orlando-area tourist information, such as hotels, gas stations, and sight-seeing spots, and a navigable map database covering all the roads in a 1,200 |mi.sup.2~ area in five central Florida counties.

Each car also had a communications system for receiving traffic data and transmitting vehicle information.

Data collected from Orlando’s traffic signals, highway surveillance equipment, emergency vehicles, construction reports, and other sources were transmitted to each car’s computer. The computer then processed this information and calculated the fastest route to a location under current traffic conditions. Route instructions were provided …

Humour Writing Always Has A Market

wrialhamThe average trade publication needs a touch of levity. For the past several years, I’ve been exploring the lighter side of the meetings and expositions industry in a column for Tradeshow Week; you can take the same approach for a periodical in the business sector of your choosing. Here’s where to look for material.

* Get on industry mailing lists. Among the press releases defiling your desk drawer will be announcements of offbeat new products and services. I’ve had fun with wearable computers, virtual-reality exhibits, even the World’s Largest Slot Machine.

* Watch for unique promotions. New Orleans named an official superhero to honor a convention of comic book suppliers. And a meeting planner once gave an 18-pound lobster named Kevin …

The Challenges Of The 21st Century Are Already Being Conquered!

21calbNeither pure technology (no matter how powerful) nor traditional business thinking (no matter how successful in the past) will produce winning strategies as the 21st century approaches. Such rusty thinking will not even allow us to make sense of the terrain in which business and technology mix with fractal intricacy.

These are the conclusions of our editors, who have worked for nearly a year researching and writing, Winning in the 21st Century. Our editors have scoured the 2-D landscape at ground level, with results that are provocative, stimulating, and packed with useful information. Our “product,” I believe, is an important contribution to the literature surrounding the high-tech marketplace at a pivotal moment in its history.

I will leave the interesting details of …

Creating Action Stories Can Be Rewarding

crengasYour hard-boiled detective Mick Delos is in a fistfight with a professional thug. Your heroine Michelle Eddy is fatigued, running through the dark forest with someone …or something…in hot pursuit. Suddenly, one reader snorts in disbelief as Mick delivers a punch with such force that his opponent staggers and passes out as he falls. Another reader yawns and shuts the book as Michelle keeps running and running and, well…

What happened? You had this great action scene all planned in your mind, but on paper it failed.

With a little more work, your action scenes can be saved. Here are some key tips to keep your action scenes active and your readers involved.

Get Real

If your genre isn’t science fiction or

Postage Fun!

postagefunI’ve always been a pretty down-to-earth person, so I was surprised when I discovered that my fate had gotten tied up with the spirits of Wendell Willkie and Mary Cassatt.

Wendell and Mary came into my life through the US Postal Service. I send my short stories to lots of literary magazines. Of course, as part of the process, I have to include stamped, self-addressed manila envelopes for the gloomy probability of the story eventually coming back to me, accompanied by a rejection note.

Until early this year, many of my envelopes called for postage of 98[cts.]. The Postal Service has no 98[cts.] stamp, but it does have a 75[cts.] stamp (Willkie) and a 23[cts.] stamp (Cassatt). So, for many months, I …