Heart-to-Heart Connection

To inspire and be inspired!

Math and Science Made Simple at Khan’s (Free Virtual) Academy!

I didn’t choose a business or a science field because I couldn’t make sense of what I should have learned in high school; but from this day forward, I’m saying “Adios!” to my math and science phobias!  

If you can relate, welcome aboard.  Check out Kahn Academy, where YouTube’s ‘professor’ Sal Khan make both basic and seemingly difficult concepts — from addition to calculus, chemistry to physics — a walk in the park!

Khan’s lessons are free, 10 minutes or less, simple, visual, and self-paced — start and pause as we please!  If I can learn, you can, too!

These testimonials say it all:

  • “I learned more about calculus in the last few hours than in the whole of the last semester at university.  I was almost ready to change majors because I wasn’t understanding much of the content but am now up to speed.” (Derek Hoy/ Geophysics Major at University of Queensland, Australia)
  • “I think he rocks.  I’m studying pre-algebra and I love it!”  (Felix Thibodeau, 11, Wilmington, N.C.) (Full Story)

Happy learning! 🙂

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June 27, 2010 Posted by | Attitude, Business, Change, Education, Freedom, History, International, Passion, Purpose, Success, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Freedom — The Right of All Mankind

Throughout history, dictators — despicable tyrants — have fought tooth and nail to control the masses.

If  they would only understand — violence and oppression may guarantee short-term power (a generation or two, at most), but never the respect nor the support of its people necessary for the governance and prosperity of a sovereign nation.

Iran, for example, is at a point of no return.  People are openly defiant; cell phone photos and the Internet exposing the regime’s violent acts for the world to see.

The dust will settle; sooner, if not later.

Then what?  Who will be next on world’s stage?

North Korea, perhaps — an isolated nation of human tragedies, a regime thriving on criminality, “hell on earth” with an estimated unemployment rate as high as 95 percent — where bribery, stealing, starvation, human trafficking, imprisonment, and torture are the norm.

Atrocities abound:

  • In North Korea, good people can’t survive; stealing, a necessary evil.
  • High-ranking North Korean defectors have testified before Congress saying that the government is overseeing the production and export of heroin and methamphetamine.
  • The quality of fertilizer South Koreans give the North is so good (and expensive), the North Korean government sells it to a Southeast Asian country.  The North continues to use fertilizer full of acidity, yielding minimal harvest.
  • The regime practices collective punishment — guilt by association.  “Political wrongdoers” and their families (accidentally sitting on a newspaper printed with the leader’s face, not hanging leaders’ portraits in homes [officials check residences], etc.) — up to three generations — are imprisoned for their “crime.”

Despite horrific accounts, positive changes are taking place inside one of the world’s most oppressive regimes.  Political shifts are occurring due to the flow of refugees back and forth from China.

These days, North Koreans are openly criticizing their government — when a few gather, discontent spills over … North Koreans are learning their country is not “paradise on earth.” (Full Story)

As people discover the truth, the regime’s grip loosens … Pyongyang, North Korea’s capital, is now the last bastion of super-control.  The rural area is becoming the ‘Wild West.'”  With fear declining, there’s great potential for change.  The regime’s control is deteriorating. (Tom White, Executive Director of Voice of the Martyrs)

June 24, 2009 Posted by | Asia, Attitude, Body, Book Review, Change, Christianity, Citizen, Collaboration, Compassion, Education, Freedom, God, Heart, History, International, Introspection, Iraq, Journalism, Leadership, Love, Mind, Passion, Peace, People, Politics, Purpose, Self Help, Soul, Spirit, Stress, Success, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Passion, Fury, NUTTIN’ BUT STRINGZ — Classical Violin Crosses Over to Pop, Rap, and Hip-Hop!

New music!  New genre!  New phenomena!

Young adults, Tourie and Damien Escobar, combine the classical sound of the violin with Pop, Rap, and Hip-Hop!  What fury, what passion, WHAT INSPIRATION! (The brothers play their violins so hard, they destroy one bow per show!)

Graduates of the prestigious Julliard School of Music in NYC, Escobars’ mission is to bridge the gap between Pop and Classical music.

Raised by a single mother in the rough neighborhood of Jamaica, Queens (NYC), violin quickly became the refuge to then 7 and 8-year-old brothers.  But life on the streets were equally luring.  Escobars’ musical aspirations were put on hold until they left the bad crowd; cleaned up their act.

“Passion for music and violin saved my life,” said Tourie.

The brothers were relentless and played in the NYC subways for pocket change ($300 each in two hours, three times per week — wow!).

In 2005, Tourie and Damien entered the talent contest at the legendary Apollo Theater and won!

The boys have never looked back.

Tourie and Damien have appeared on The Tonight Show with Jay Leno, Ellen DeGeneres, Today Show with Katie Couric, at the White House (performing for President George W. Bush), and the list goes on.

Escobars’ CD, Struggle from the Subway to the Charts, is a brilliant blend of classical daring intertwined with rap undertones.  NUTTIN’ BUT STRINGZ (NBS) has created a new genre that’s being talked about and admired.  The buzz has begun.  Their music is a provocative and stirring Thunder that will be analyzed and copied for years to come.  (Anonymous)

Full Story 🙂

June 13, 2009 Posted by | America, Art, Attitude, Change, Collaboration, Dream, Education, Freedom, Health and Wellness, Heart, Introspection, Leadership, Love, Marketing, Mind, Passion, Purpose, Self Help, Soul, Spirit, Success, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

How to Be Interesting — Improve Conversation Rates!

Just stumbled upon a highly informative blog on “How to boost online conversation” (as always, thanks Copyblogger for the useful tips)!

When it comes to web design, there are no firm set of rules. But following these simple guidelines will help you optimize your site and improve conversation rates:

  1. Fantastic visuals grab visitors attention
  2. Great headlines encourage action
  3. Float your best content to the top
  4. Make important content stand out (see also How to be Interesting)
  5. What’s in it for me? (provide informative/entertaining content)
  6. Fewer questions boost conversions
  7. Run usability tests
  8. Test, repair, and retest  (Full Story) 🙂

June 7, 2009 Posted by | Attitude, blogging tips, Blogs, Change, Journalism, Marketing, Purpose, Self Help, Success, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Twitter — Market Your Website Without Search Engines!

Until last night, I thought Twitter was an easy way to talk about tidbits of your life with those interested in you and your thoughts.  My stifled imagination didn’t realize, next to word of mouth, Twitter is THE way to share your website — on “Silver Platter”!

Thanks to Copyblogger’s “Marketing your Website Without Search Engines,” Dosh Dosh got me thinking about the power of good old word of mouth (Twitter is 21st century’s “word of mouth”).

When you’re looking for a handyman, a dentist (affordable, skilled, and efficient), or great deals (from food, clothes, to cars), who would you ask — the business owners or a trusted, respected friend?

If you’re like me, you’d ask a friend.

Business owners, in general, have their interests in mind (yes, a few bad apples — the AIGs [Adventures In Greed] — can definitely give the honest, hard workers a bad name).

Friends support.  Friends help.  Friends will tell friends which products and services worked for them and why — simple, honest, truth from the heart.

Twitter is our easy-to-use 21st century friend, connecting us with our friends and followers — share your favorite thoughts, experiences, and products online with computers and cell phones — in 140 characters or less!

Thanks to WordPress, we can now Twitter from our blog (Go to Add New Post, see left column, click Appearance, Widgets).  I’ve just added mine last night (see Sneak Preview, top right).  I have yet to find out whether this feature will be helpful to visitors, but I thought I’d try.

You’re the judge.  Was the Sneak Preview helpful?

Love to hear your thoughts!  🙂

April 20, 2009 Posted by | Attitude, blogging tips, Blogs, Business, Change, Collaboration, Dream, Education, Finance, Freedom, Heart, International, Journalism, Marketing, Mind, Passion, Peace, Politics, Purpose, Self Help, Soul, Spirit, Success, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

YouTube Symphony — 21st Century Global Orchestra

How clever — bringing people together — through the power of music, the universal language, and the online community!

On April 15, musicians worldwide will play at New York City’s prestigious Carnegie Hall.

Participants comprise amateurs and professionals who have auditioned and proved themselves worthy members of the 21st century orchestra.

Accomplished participants have met three challenges:

  1. Video submission demonstrating the musician’s interpretation of an original Tan Dun composition written specifically for this program
  2. Talent showcase video designed to demonstrate musical and technical ability.  Panels of musical experts from world renowned symphonies — San Francisco Symphony, London Symphony Orchestra, Berlin Philharmonic, Hong Kong Philharmonic Orchestra, and others — narrowed down the finalists.
  3. The YouTube community voted on the semifinalists from February 14, 2009 through February 22, 2009.  (Full Story)

Enormous talents may be at the brink of discovery!  Wow!

April 15 — that’s the BIG DAY; April 16, for those who can’t be at Carnegie Hall (like me).  Can’t wait to see the musicians in action!

Stay tuned on YouTube!

April 14, 2009 Posted by | Art, Asia, Attitude, Change, Collaboration, Education, Europe, Heart, History, International, Japan, Mind, Passion, Peace, Purpose, Spirit, Success, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Blogging — Past, Present, Future

History informs!  History repeats!

Humans are wired to make sense of the world; to question, to seek patterns and meaning in our lives (IMHO).

COMMON PLACE — Blogging in the Early Republic captures the cycle of information overload; a phenomenon certainly not new to the 21st century.

Eighteenth century citizens experienced similar situations.  Printing presses and the Industrial Revolution gave people unprecedented access to wealth of printed materials!

Blogging is perhaps “the literate person’s new outlet for an old need … to see more of what’s going on around me.  And in print cultures, where there is more to see, it takes reading, writing, association, (and critical thinking) in order to see more (and sort between the credible, not credible; the important, and the not important).” (parenthesis mine).

So what’s next?

Will star bloggers merge with major newspapers providing breaking news, analysis, and entertainment to the masses?

Will citizens report their experiences, sharing local news with the wider online community?

What will our future hold? What do you predict?

April 1, 2009 Posted by | Attitude, Blogs, Change, History, Mind, Passion, Purpose, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Etsy — The Online Craft Fair Experience!

Looking for a special one-of-a-kind gift? Interested in supporting your local artists? How about the interaction and personal connection with the artists — from the comfort of your own home?

Browse Etsy — an online craft fair where individuals buy and sell all things handmade.  Etsy offers one-of-a-kind items from $2 earrings to high end paintings; an experience of a lifetime — from exhilarating to downright overwhelming — depending on who you ask.

At last count, more than 70,000 — about 90 percent of whom were women — were using Etsy to peddle their jewelry, art, toys, clothes, dishware, stationery, zines and a variety of objects from the mundane to the highly idiosyncratic.

Each seller has a profile page telling shoppers a bit about themselves, and maybe offering a link to a blog or a MySpace page or a mailing list; most have devised some clever store or brand name for whatever they’re selling. (Full Story)

If unique gifts, do-it-yourself entrepreneurial spirit, handmade goods, and going green are music to your ears, Etsy may be right up your alley!  Your next online community experience is just a click away!

March 31, 2009 Posted by | Business, Finance, Heart, Holidays, Marketing, Mind, Money, Passion, Purpose, Spirit, Success, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

To Tweet or Not to Tweet

I’ve never gotten into Twitter until WordPress recently added the widget to our blogs. I’ve actually touched base with long lost friends; for that, I am grateful!

I also follow my neighbors across the street on Twitter (we follow each other). Twitter helps us stay connected.

Twitter is a great way to practice “tight writing!” I don’t know about you, but I’m still trying to master the art of cramming my thoughts into 140 characters (including spaces – yikes)!

Face-to-face contact and having a life outside of the virtual world IS important. I guess it’s all a balancing act — reconnect, stay connected, make new connections (yeah)!

To tweet or not to tweet, that is the question. Thoughts?

March 30, 2009 Posted by | Attitude, Blogs, Change, Education, International, Journalism, Marketing, Mind, Passion, Purpose, Spirit, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Hold Parents Accoutable

PARENTS!!!  PARENTING IS OUR RESPONSIBILITY!!!  Our children ARE OUR RESPONSIBILITY — not the school’s, not the police — OURS!!!!

As a mother of a preteen boy, articles and video clips on sexting ran shivers up my spine! Call me dinosaur, techno-illiterate, totally out-of-the-loop — I’m one of the few on this planet without a cell phone.  Unfortunately, that doesn’t mean my 10-year-old son won’t have access to one (like all preteens, he has friends).

“Teens lack the life experiences to understand the long-term effects of their actions” — maybe so (I’ve made some REALLY STUPID CHOICES in my younger days so I’m certainly not in a position to cast judgment); but if one naked picture online can label a teenager as a “slut” and a convicted sex offender, there’s NO SECOND CHANCE TO MAKE A FIRST IMPRESSION (can’t take those pictures back once they’re out there.  Internet photos spread like wildfire)!

(See also State Laws on Obscenity, Child Pornography, and Harassment)

March 10, 2009 Posted by | Body, Education, Health and Wellness, Heart, Mind, Soul, Spirit, Stress, Technology | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment