Eighty-Eight Percent of Teachers Seek Book Discounts and More

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – It’s undeniable that teachers are considered to be some of the most significant and respected people in our lives. In fact, about 80 percent of Americans feel strongly so, according to the Global Teacher Status Index.
Despite being revered, many teachers still don’t have enough access to the primary tools of education: books. According to a recent panel with educators, bookseller Barnes & Noble found that the number one thing teachers want more of for their classrooms is books. Furthermore, educators said they often use their own money to buy additional books for their students.
This need will be particularly relevant in coming months as teachers do their back-to-school shopping. Last year, teachers spent an average of $652 of their own money on classroom supplies, according to Agile Education Marketing and SheerID. That’s likely why that same survey found that 88 percent of teachers actively search for companies that offer a teacher discount.
Educators will be glad to know, then, that Barnes & Noble is extending its annual Back to School Educator Appreciation Days, making it the longest one ever. The world’s largest retail bookseller kicks off the deals on July 20 and celebrates educators every Saturday and Sunday through September 15.
“It’s central to Barnes & Noble to recognize our teachers and administrators for their dedication and hard work,” says Tracy Vidakovich, Vice President of Business Development. “We’re thrilled to lengthen this year’s Educator Appreciation Days to help them stretch both their time and budgets with more days to shop and save on school year items.”
All US stores will feature special discounts expressly for grades pre-K through 12 public, private and homeschool teachers and administrators who are enrolled in the free Barnes & Noble Educator Discount Card Program. It includes 25 percent off most merchandise such as books, toys and games. The offer will also be valid at BN.com.
“Our Educator Appreciation Days help teachers and administrators prep for the new school year at a great value,” continues Vidakovich. “What’s more, Barnes & Noble supports teachers year-round through its free Barnes & Noble Educator Discount Card Program.”
Educator Appreciation Days special discount offerings include:
* 25 percent off list price on most books, gifts, music, DVDs, and toys and games for classroom purchase
* 10 percent off all Café consumables purchases
* 10 percent off discount applied to price after instant rebate on select NOOK devices. including Samsung Galaxy Tab A NOOK 7″, Samsung Galaxy Tab S2 NOOK 8″, Samsung Galaxy Tab E NOOK 9.6″, as well as NOOK Glowlight 3 and NOOK Glowlight Plus.
Some states – including Alabama, Florida, Missouri, New Mexico and others – even have their own back-to-school tax holiday periods during which select back-to-school items are sales tax-exempt, allowing for even more savings. Check if your state is one of them.
To take advantage of Barnes & Noble offers, educators can apply for their Barnes & Noble Educator Discount Card in their local store or download the form here.
Educators and customers can follow Barnes & Noble on Twitter, Instagram, Pinterest and Snapchat (@bnsnaps), or like them on Facebook. #BNBacktoSchool

ICO Offers Investors a Chance to Cash in on Green Energy Plan

(NewsUSA) – Interest in alternative, environmentally-friendly energy sources continues to grow, and one company, Eco Smart Energies, offers investors a unique opportunity to get in on the ground floor of green energy with a pre-sale Initial Coin Offering (ICO) at renbdo.io to raise funds for the Renewable Energy Network Based on Decentralized Organization (RENBDO) project.The project involves the creation of a wind power farm and the installation of up to 52 wind turbines to produce green energy.During the 15-day, pre-sale period, 10 percent of the Renewable Energy Tokens (RETs) will be sold at a 50-percent discount via a cryptocurrency system. The discount will not be available after the pre-sale period. "Ownership of one RET is equivalent to owning one asset in Eco Smart Energies," according to a company press release."These turbines are capable of producing mechanical energy that can be transformed into electrical energy, using wind energy converters linked to power distributors," according to a company white paper.Cryptocurrency, an internet-based system for financial transactions, has the advantages of minimal processing fees, decentralization, and blockchain to confirm and provide security. The exchanges are quick and can be conducted on a global scale, which makes life easier for investors. According to a recent opinion piece on the Bloomberg website by former risk manager Aaron Brown, cryptocurrency is not without risk, but neither is investing, and "there are plausible scenarios in which crypto grows to become a significant part of the economy."Investors are seeing the potential of green energy companies and the convenience of cryptocurrency. Wind energy is one of the most strongly recommended alternatives to the use of fossil fuels, and Eco Smart gets investors involved in the environmental angle with an application that will allow the token owners not only to send or receive tokens, but also to view how much wind power is being produced from the turbines. "The token holders can also actively participate in issues that are related to the future of the wind farm," according to the company.Visit renbdo.io for more information about how cryptocurrency will shape the future and for investment opportunities. 

Need for Donor Registry Prompts Nobel Nomination

(NewsUSA) – When Dr. Bart Fisher’s son, Ivan, was diagnosed with a rare blood disorder in 1983 at eight-years-old, the only cure was a bone marrow transplant. However, at that time, there was only a small bone marrow registry in England, with 50,000 names and, in the U.S., no registry at all to find a match.Since Ivan’s death, Dr. Fisher has made it his mission to establish large marrow registries around the world that would provide the gift of life to those in need of marrow transplantation.Underscoring the need for a donor registry is the fact that every nine minutes an American dies from a blood cancer such as leukemia, lymphoma, or myeloma. In 2018 alone, there were 174,250 new blood cancer cases."I tried to take a personal disaster and turn it into a mechanism that could save the lives of others needing a marrow match," says Dr. Fisher, a Washington D.C. lawyer, and PhD.Now, due in large part to Dr. Fisher’s efforts, the National Marrow Donor Program and other marrow registries match voluntary marrow donors with patients in need of a bone marrow transplant, as well as those who have marrow failure. Since the formation of the program in 1986, more than 80,000 transplants have taken place as a result of matches found by marrow registries and over 6,200 transplants a year are performed.According to Dr. Robert K. Stuart, Ivan’s doctor, the registry was needed long before it became a reality."The skeptics said we need to develop the technology before we would be ready for a registry. But what people don’t realize is that creating the registry is what drove the technology development. We would not be where we are if we had waited to create the registry later," he says.In addition to his work to create an international registry, Dr. Fisher co-founded the Give Life Foundation, which seeks to expand the base of voluntary organ donors for the worldwide registries. In turn, the Foundation has launched the Swab for Life campaign, a program that promotes registries through pharmacies, dentists’ offices, and doctors’ offices.For his tireless efforts, the Aplastic Anemia and MDS International Foundation (AAMDS) has nominated Dr. Fisher, its founder and a member of its Board of Directors, for a 2019 Nobel Prize in two categories: peace and medicine."The Nobel Prize nomination recognizes the significant contributions of Dr. Fisher to the establishment and growth of marrow registries around the world, and we are pleased and honored to support his efforts to advance this life-saving cure for aplastic anemia, leukemia, and other blood cancers," says Neil Horikoshi, executive director and CEO of the Aplastic Anemia and MDS International Foundation."I am honored to receive this nomination on behalf of my son, knowing that the work I have done has helped thousands of people in need. That it will continue to save lives is a legacy to Ivan’s memory."To find out more about the Foundation and its mission, as well as resources available, visit https://www.aamds.org/

Safeguard Your Jewelry on Summer Vacation

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Julie Embling and her fiancé were traveling from Milwaukee, WI to Bridal Veil, Oregon to mail their wedding invitations. It was a quick 36-hour trip that was supposed to be filled with bliss but turned horrifying when Embling noticed her engagement ring was gone.
Unfortunately, the Emblings aren’t alone. In fact, Jewelers Mutual conducted a recent survey on travel and jewelry loss or theft and found that the number of jewelry losses, based on survey responses, has doubled compared to their 2015 survey. The most common place to lose jewelry? The beach (27 percent of reported losses).
The survey also revealed that only 1 percent of travelers who lose jewelry report recovering the piece.
“Approximately 40 percent of consumers are devastated or experience a high level of emotional impact from a lost piece of jewelry,” said Don Elliott, director of claims at Jewelers Mutual.
Avoid becoming a vacation victim with these six travel tips from Jewelers Mutual’s new travel guide:
* Take pictures of items before your trip in case you need to file a police report.
* Avoid posting pictures of your jewelry and location on social media.
* Leave jewelry off while swimming.
* Wear or pack jewelry in a carry-on bag.
* Tuck necklaces and watches under necklines and cuffs when in dangerous areas.
* Keep necklaces safe and untangled in your bag by threading them through a straw; fasten earrings to an extra button to keep them together.
Jewelers Mutual puts travelers’ minds at ease. The Wisconsin-based company has been in the business since 1913, and understands the value of jewelry and developing personal relationships with its customers.
While some homeowner’s insurance plans cover an extent of personal property, the plans typically won’t go as far as to replace a cherished piece that is lost or damaged. For those seeking to replace their lost treasure, Jewelers Mutual works with jewelers to recreate your lost, damaged or stolen jewelry so it can continue to be a prized possession for years to come.
Embling and her fiancé acted fast retracing their steps and discovered the ring in their hotel room, which happens to be the second highest place people lose their jewelry.
Visit jewelersmutual.com for more information about insuring and protecting your most cherished memories.

Automated Containers Make Organic Urban Farming Feasible

Five words or less(NewsUSA) -The future of agriculture can be found in commercial containers, in which plants can be grown hydroponically.
Hydroponic farming has many benefits, including saving the resources involved in soil cultivation and avoiding the uncertainty of weather conditions, according to Seedo, an innovator in the field of commercial growth containers.
Approximately 40 percent of the costs of produce in large city supermarkets are used to cover logistics and shipping. Commercial containers such as those from Seedo would expand the potential for urban farming to anywhere, anytime. Plants can be cultivated 24/7, regardless of location.
For example, the automated urban farm is ideally suited to the growing market for medical cannabis and medical cannabis products. Seedo is the technology behind the world’s first automated medical cannabis farm, which will yield significantly more plants than traditional controlled greenhouses.
Another opportunity for the Seedo technology is to improve the agriculture of at-risk countries, where global warming and other concerns threaten consistent farming and food production.
In some areas, farmers can use Seedo equipment and technology for growing not only medicinal herbs, but also greens such as lettuce, kale, and wheatgrass; herbs such as parsley, dill, and basil; and vegetables such as cherry tomatoes and bell peppers, and even strawberries. In the home, individuals can set up a small unit that grows plants easily and effectively without intervention.
Seedo, a pioneer in agriculture and technology with 20 years of experience, is now delivering indoor growth systems to homes and businesses across the country. Currently, Seedo has sold more than 3,000 home units through pre-orders.
The Seedo products use artificial intelligence software to control and monitor plant development from the moment the seed is planted. The software tracks each plant’s development, and responds by taking action to optimize growth. The hermetically sealed systems are designed to yield consistent results regardless of the local climate.
Growers need only to plant seeds or seedlings and monitor the growth process via the Seedo app.
Other features of the Seedo system include a unique lighting system that self-adjusts based on an individual plant’s stage of growth, and a smell-proof cover with built-in CO2 cartridges to prevent smell leaks.
Equally important to note is that all produce cultivated with Seedo’s technology (both home and commercial) is pesticide-free, of high quality, and has a significantly extended shelf life.
Visit seedo.com for more information about investing in the growth industry of indoor gardening, and to learn more about the Seedo technology and products.
Seedo is a publicly traded company with the ticker symbol OTCQB:SEDO.

Decoupling from China

(NewsUSA) -We do not know what will come out of the meeting between President Trump and Xi Jinping at the G-20 on June 28, but the signs are ominous. The state-promoted anti-American propaganda blasting U.S. "bullying" on trade and the resurgence in Chinese nationalism stoked by Xi Jinping augur poorly for successful trade negotiations with China. And any deal made by Trump is likely to be attacked by Democrats as too weak, so Trump at this point has little incentive to make a deal with China before the 2020 presidential election.My prediction is that China will not drop its equity caps and intellectual property theft, and will not stop subsidizing all of its state-owned enterprises. As a result; we will see acceleration of the decoupling of China from the United States, in other words, a reversal of the economic integration and interpenetration that has taken place between these two economies over the past 20 years. So let us examine the implications of the decoupling of China from the United States.The first area to consider is trade. The IMF has estimated that if the United States were to impose 25 percent tariffs on all Chinese imports, and China were to retaliate, the trade volume between China and the United States would drop by 70 percent. So there would clearly be an initial "trade shock."The question here is whether the U.S. can find other low-cost suppliers. The answer is yes. We have seen that suppliers such as Vietnam have stepped up their exports to the United States, and other Asian countries and Mexico will also try to fill the role of low-cost supplier to the U.S. market. Vietnam has gained an estimated 7.9 percent of its gross domestic product from new business created by the U.S.-China trade war.The next largest gainer is Taiwan, with 2.1 percent of its GDP added as a result of the U.S.-China trade war needed from other countries supplied by China.In summary, if the Trump tariffs were to remain in place, there would undoubtedly be an initial "trade shock," and some dislocations. Over time, however, the United States would gradually shift its import sources to lower- cost suppliers, and would substitute rare earth minerals from other countries. So, with regard to trade, China is replaceable.The second area is investment. Chinese direct investment in the United States dropped 84 percent from 2017 to 2018, from $29.4 billion to $4.8 billion. The U.S. government, will further limit Chinese investors through national security reviews. Meanwhile, U.S. direct investment in China has stagnated at $26.9 billion, with the annual growth rate dropping from 11 percent to 1.5 percent in 2018. U.S. investment will increasingly take place in other low-wage Asian countries such as Vietnam and Taiwan, and Mexico. Moreover, the lowering of U.S. corporate tax rates on January 1, 2018, from 35 percent to 21 percent will discourage direct foreign investment by U.S. enterprises, and make the United States a more promising place to invest than China. Therefore, if the Trump tariffs remain in place, China can be largely replaced over time by other countries as an investment target.Last month, the Trump Administration restricted sales by U.S. companies to Huawei, the Chinese telecommunications champion. This measure will force Huawei to develop its own versions of chips and operating systems to replace those that it now obtains from the West. And last week the Commerce Department imposed new export controls that will effectively bar five major Chinese supercomputer developers of next-generation, high-performance computing from obtaining U.S. technology. The Commerce ban on exports to the major Chinese supercomputer companies, along with the Huawei ban, will promote the decoupling of the two countries’ tech supply chains. Therefore, it is likely that separate operating systems will be set up for telecommunications, supercomputers, and the Internet.China holds an estimated $1.1 trillion of U.S. government bonds. Some have warned that if China decided to dump U.S. dollars, U.S. interest rates would soar and the U.S. economy would implode. China’s holdings, however, are not a particularly large proportion of the roughly $22 trillion total of U.S. government debt. Furthermore, China has already sold $221 billion in long-term Treasuries since early 2015, with no harm done to the U.S. capital market.We are entering a new phase of increased Chinese assertiveness. China is now challenging the United States for global supremacy, while the U.S. Government distrusts Chinese intentions and sees China as a predatory competitor and an adversary. The global consensus based on liberalization is likely to be replaced by rival trading blocs. This may not be a desirable development from the standpoint of the United States and the global economy, but it is the most important geopolitical event of our era. Decoupling from China, while painful for both countries, would be preferable to a real war with China, the likely alternative.*Bart S. Fisher is an attorney in Washington, D.C., and co-author of International Trade and Investment: Regulating International Business. 

Creating An Outdoor Oasis

(NewsUSA) – Summer cookouts. Relaxing nights. Weekend staycations. Whether entertaining friends or simply relaxing with family, homeowners are enjoying vacation vibes in their own backyards. Serene porches and oasis-like patios are all the rage these days, and design pros – aiming to pair comfort and functionality – are crafting these stylish spaces with natural materials such as cypress. Beautiful and Durable Jane Frederick of Frederick + Frederick Architects in Beaufort, South Carolina, and president-elect of the American Institute of Architects, says homeowners are looking for comfortable spaces for entertaining. "Our area is hot and humid," she adds. "Screened-in porches with ceiling fans continue to be extremely popular upgrades in new construction and renovations."And full outdoor kitchens are no longer must-haves, says Frederick. "Most people want porches with a simple kitchen, integrating a grill and plenty of countertop space, storage, and seating – good-looking light fixtures, too."To top off a porch with a high-end look, Frederick chooses cypress for ceilings, overhangs, and rafter tails. Why? "First and foremost, cypress is a beautiful material. But equally important, cypress is naturally resistant to decay and mildew. And it’s locally sourced." How About a "Prefab" Structure Built to Last? "Pergolas and pavilions offer open, airy outdoor spaces, yet provide relief from direct sunlight, to enjoy dinner or cocktails after a long day at the office," says Hubert Burns of My Outdoor Rooms in Dothan, Alabama. "They can also be outfitted with TVs and fireplaces, and adorned with plants and drapery to add privacy and a personal touch."Most importantly, outdoor living space is an investment and homeowners deserve high-quality structures that will last. We’ve been building with cypress for more than 10 years, and found that it performs well when exposed to the elements, is naturally durable and resistant to insect infestation, and is more beautiful than pressure-treated wood."Building a gorgeous, outdoor cypress pergola or pavilion need not be a daunting task. Burns says that companies across the country specialize in prefabricating structures and ship nationwide, taking the stress out of design and construction. "Prefabrication ensures they are high-quality and can be installed quickly," Burns adds. "And three people can install a 16-foot-by-16-foot pergola in about five hours."For more tips on creating your outdoor living space with cypress, visit www.CypressInfo.org.

Be Your Own Towel Guru

(NewsUSA) – Whether you’re creating your wedding registry, preparing for a bathroom makeover, taking advantage of holiday sales or just ready to towel off like a grownup – here’s a handy visual guide to selecting quality bath linens from Micro Cotton®, which has been crafting quality comfort for eight decades. Check it out and then head to Macy’s, Dillard’s, or Bed, Bath & Beyond to practice your newfound bath linen expertise. See full-sized image here

The Barcode Story: Its Past, Present, And Future

Five words or less(NewsUSA) – Whether you’re buying online or shopping in a store, there are many modern shopping conveniences available today that can be traced back to the debut of a seemingly simple technology – the first barcode scan.
With a powerful impact on global commerce, the barcode is used by millions of people everywhere, every day.
However, its creation required decades of collaboration with grocery industry leaders to establish its design, use, and ultimately cement its place in retail. This year, we celebrate the definitive moment in history when 45 years ago, the first Universal Product Code (UPC) was scanned – a milestone that led to unprecedented economic opportunities and the variety of shopping options we enjoy today.

Weathering The Storm Starts at The Top

(NewsUSA) – While property damage caused by extreme weather often makes headlines, even isolated spring and summer storms can wreak havoc on your home’s roof.When functioning as a system, the right roof uses components to help protect your home from the elements in three key areas. First, the roofing system helps defend against weather-inflicted damage. Second, the roofing system is designed to protect against moisture intrusion. Finally, the roofing system helps a home breathe with balanced attic ventilation.As such, it’s a good practice to make sure your home’s roof is in optimal condition before storm season gets underway. The following tips can help prepare your roof to weather nature’s storms.Look for damage: Some weather damage is easily visible. For example, divots on shingles or missing shingle granules may indicate hail damage. Thin, horizontal lines where granules have worn off may also indicate that a storm has affected shingles.However, other damage may be harder to see. A knowledgeable contractor, such as a member of the Owens Corning Roofing Contractor Network, can assess a roof for potential trouble areas and make sure your roof is ready for stormy weather.Invest in shingle technology: Should a roof replacement be needed, technological advances and building science provide opportunities to improve a roof’s ability to withstand rough weather. For example, Duration® Series Shingles with SureNail® Technology have a tough woven fabric strip in the nailing zone which helps them withstand winds up to 130-MPH and StreakGuard™ Algae Resistance Protection.*For select storm-prone regions of the U.S., Duration STORM® and Duration FLEX™ impact-resistant shingles are equipped with patented SureNail® and WeatherGuard® technologies. Using advanced technology, a special polymeric backing material allows the shingles to meet the industry’s highest ratings for impact resistance, UL 2218 Class 4.Owens Corning® Duration FLEX™ shingles are made with a special blend of SBS polymer- modified asphalt. The rubberizing effect of the uniquely blended asphalt provides greater flexibility, enhanced durability and toughness – especially under intense storm conditions.Underneath the shingles, synthetic underlayment creates a water-proof barrier that moves water away from your home’s roof. In addition to withstanding water absorption and mold, synthetic underlayments support safety for contractors working on the roof before shingles are installed.Don’t sacrifice beauty for performance: A new roof is also a great opportunity to boost a home’s curb appeal. The TruDefinition® color platform of Duration® Series shingles are available in a variety of unique colors and shades that provide distinct contrast and dimension. Online tools are also available to help homeowners visualize how shingles can transform the look of their home.While summer brings stormy weather, new technologies and shingle colors are helping roofs weather the storm beautifully.*See actual warranty for details, limitations and requirements. For patent information, please visit www.owenscorning.com/patents