Museum Gifts

If you are a salesperson, you may maintain contact information on dozens, if not hundreds, of customers and sales leads. Contact management software often provides for recording the birthday of your contacts so that you can single out individuals for special recognition at least once a year. If you happen to sell items of some value, you may feel it necessary to include modest (or even not so modest) gifts with your birthday greetings. But that creates the salesperson’s dilemma: what to give?

Think about it – you want to give something that is not necessarily expensive, but is imbued with a quality look and feel. Nothing turns off a customer or prospect faster than a cheap or ill-considered gift. But if you are competing with other salespeople and they give gifts, you can’t afford to do nothing. You, then, are a perfect candidate for giving a gift purchased from a museum.

Museum gifts are a great idea. First of all, just about everyone loves museums of one kind or another. If your contact manager keeps track of customer interests and hobbies, you are halfway home. The next step is to visit the gift shop, either physically or over the Internet, of a museum that encompasses your customer’s area of interest. There are museums for just about everything, from golf to medieval weapons. The people who stock museum gift shops are selected for their interest and knowledge in a particular area, and know how to differentiate items of value from cheap throwaways.

Jewelry or diamond rings are a popular item, and museums that display priceless gems and jewelry often sell tasteful reproductions at a very reasonable price. A pair of earrings that hearken back to Elizabethan England is sure to make your contact (or your contact’s wife) thrilled and impressed with your good taste. A small statue that reproduces a Mayan artifact will please clients who are interested in interior home decorating. Many salespeople join one or more museums so that they qualify for member discounts, which can add up over time.

Of course, it’s nice to know that museum gifts help a worthy institution. Many museums cannot sustain themselves on ticket sales alone. Museum gift shops make an important contribution to an institution’s bottom line, ever more important in these times of meager government financing. It’s also good to support the artisans and craftspeople that create many of the items stocked in a museum gift shop. Without your patronage, many of them would be unable to pursue their art. So, the next time your contact manager alerts you to a customer’s upcoming birthday, check out the wares at a museum gift shop – it’s a thoughtful gift from just about any perspective.

The Life of a Concierge

As a successful Miami Beach concierge, I am often asked by friends and admirers how I like the lifestyle. Many are, I think, a little envious. Well, if you think it’s all glamour and high-pay, you are only partially correct. Yes, I enjoy going to Harry Winston’s to pick out a diamond necklace for the wife of a client who is too busy (or diffident) to do it himself. But I’m just as likely to be walking some mutt and picking up its poop. A good concierge accepts the yin and the yang of the job, enjoys the fun parts and charges plenty for the unpleasant bits. For instance, I have one elderly client who recently went to look at safe tubs and had one installed in her condominium. I help her bathe every day — not fun but well-compensated.

In a place like Miami Beach, you can easily charge $45 an hour and up, depending on the client and the task. Anything involving the personal hygiene of your client or your client’s pets will command a substantial surcharge, which they will gladly pay. I don’t think I need to go into details.  Another thing that wealthy mothers don’t mind spending money on is you taking her kids out for some adventure, say to the movies or an amusement park. The elite mothering class usually employs nannies, but many nannies are not equipped to handle these kinds of outings. That’s where a personal concierge comes in. If you drive a large car and know the best places to take kids so that Mommy can get over to the day spa for a few hours, you will be a hero.

Of course, a good personal concierge must be discreet. Never share the names of your clients with anyone, especially other clients. You must be like the three monkeys: see no evil, etc. Clients know that if you tattle on your other clients, you will tattle on them. And that is not good.

Being a personal assistant really doesn’t leave me much time for myself, as I am basically on call 24/7/365. Luckily, my needs are modest, and the pay helps me satisfy most of them. While you must keep a certain professional aspect to your relationships with clients, you will quickly find yourself befriending some of them and this makes the job a lot more fun. In a way, your clientele is your extended family, even though you charge them for the privilege. I say to the people who know me: don’t hate me for my success. Instead, walk a mile in my very comfortable and expensive shoes – you just may be surprised at the things people are willing to pay for.

The Different Types of at Home Nail Courses

When it comes to learning how to offer manicures and fake nails, you need to understand that there are multiple ways to treat a persons nails. As such, you’re going to have to take nail courses that teach you the various techniques that you need to provide options to your future clients. If you have never looked at your options before, but you’re interested in becoming a nail tech, here are some of the different types of courses that you can take to learn about different types of nail techniques.

Acrylic Nail Courses – Acrylic nails are applied using acrylic powder and an activation liquid. The process requires you to either coat someones existing nails or build a nail using the acrylic. The end result are strong nails that can keep a chip free polish for a number of weeks.

Gel Nail Courses – The application of gel nails is very similar to that of acrylic nails. However, gel nails are more flexible, which makes them appear more realistic than acrylic nails.

Sculpting Courses – Sculpting is an extension of the acrylic nail courses. This course teaches you how to create free form acrylic nails using only your brush.

Fiberglass Nail Courses – Fiberglass nails are similar to the fake nails that you can buy in the store. However, applying these in such a way to make them look real is something that can only be achieved by an expert.

Nail Art Courses – Nail art courses are available for air brush, stenciling or free form art. Each type of nail art requires specific training so that you can produce a professional look every time.

Master Nail Courses – Master nail courses are available for every each of the nail courses mentioned above. These courses extend your current level of expertise to that of a master level.

The benefit to all of the nail courses mentioned above is that you can complete them in the comfort of your own home. You don’t have to change your schedule or worry about meeting any deadlines, simply following along with each course on a DVD and complete them at your own leisure.

A DNS Failover Service – Is it right for you?

Over the years, DNS Failover has become a very popular service primarily due to the fact that it is relatively inexpensive and fairly easy to deploy and manage. But is it the right solution for your organization? In this article, we’ll outline what DNS failover is and provide an overview of the benefits and appropriate uses for this type of technology.

What is DNS Failover?

First, we must define what DNS failover is before trying to understand whether or not it offers benefits. Simply put, DNS failover is an add-on feature of a DNS Service and is a system that consists of two main components. The first component monitors servers or devices behind IP addresses in an effort to determine their state, e.g. up or down. Second, it uses the server state information to automatically update the IP address associated with a particular DNS record, such as an ‘A’ record, ‘AAAA’ record or otherwise. It may consist of other components designed to deliver email or SMS alerts in the event that an outage is detected or changes are made, but any successful DNS Failover solution must consist of at least the first two essential elements.

Common Applications for DNS Failover

So now that we know what DNS Failover is, what is the most common use for it and what applications can benefit from this method of automating DNS updates?

Perhaps the most obvious use that comes to mind is to control web traffic. Failing over between redundant web servers is a very common implementation, and is probably the most frequently used application. From the failover system’s perspective, it really doesn’t matter where the two IP addresses are, so long as they are different. So because of this, it could be used to failover between two different servers at the same datacenter, servers at different datacenters (even across the globe) or it could be even the same server with two different network connections, each having their own IP address, for example a server at a corporate office with one IP on each of two different T1 lines.

Naturally, what can be done for web servers can also be done for mail servers, FTP servers, streaming media servers or VoIP servers, just to name a few. Essentially, if it has an IP address and can be monitored externally, DNS Failover can route traffic to it when it is up, and redirect to another server when it is down.

Common Features

Most well thought out DNS Failover implementations should have at least a few basic features. First, and probably paramount to failover success, is monitoring. The more advanced the monitoring feature-set, the better. This allows you to detect outages as accurately as possible. At a minimum, we would expect functionality to fine-tune the monitors and to run them from multiple geographic locations in order to create an accurate picture for when failover actually needs to occur. Of course, it should probably go without saying that the monitoring and alerting functionality should be able to send alerts via email, SMS or both.

Another important feature, in our opinion, is some flexibility in how traffic is routed. The most common traffic routing configurations are sequential or round-robin. Sequential allows you to list servers in the order you want traffic to be delivered so that if the server with a priority of 1 goes down, it sends traffic to the server with a priority of 2 and so forth. Round-robin publishes a DNS record for every one of the active and available servers so that traffic is distributed amongst them as evenly as possible. When one goes down or becomes otherwise unavailable, it is simply removed from the pool allowing traffic to continue being distributed amongst the remaining server(s).

And finally, you’ll probably want a feature that prevents the automatic re-announcement of a server’s IP address when it comes back online. In the case of a server providing static web content, re-adding may not pose a problem, but in the case of a database server requiring resynchronization, this little feature is critical.

Limitations of DNS Failover

The biggest limitation when using DNS Failover for application switching is the ability to quickly detect an outage and make a change that will actually propagate the Internet in relatively short order to seamlessly redirect users, both current and future. Even the best DNS Failover solutions that accurately detect an outage and update DNS quickly and accurately still leave customers at the mercy of a well known problem called caching. This is an extremely tough issue to resolve because it is not within the DNS Failover service providers control.

Caching issues are created when ISPs ignore TTL values, or they can be caused by something as simple as default Internet browser settings which are configured to cache images in order to improve page load times. The shortest compliant TTL value is 60 seconds, and for some ISPs this is simply too short. AOL, for example, is known to ignore low TTL values and substitute them with something much higher, say 15 minutes, for example. But other than those ISPs who ignore TTL values, a 60 second setting in theory *should* propagate the Internet relatively quickly.

Is there anything better?

Depending on your application, Cloud Load Balancing might be a better fit. That, of course, should be dictated by your specific requirements for uptime, flexibility for balancing traffic among servers and how critical the need to avoid caching created by TTL avoidance or just plain old browser settings. Cloud Load Balancing is similar in design, but offers extremely powerful traffic management solutions similar to hardware load balancers (except on a global scale) for serious online organizations.

When Money Is Involved In The Diet Plan

When it comes down to it, losing weight is all about structure. Very few people can lose weight without having some sort of structure in their life, especially if they have issue with things like will-power, and following through with exercise. This is one of the reasons why so many people out there spend money on diet programs, especially those that include meetings and weigh-ins. By having a structure that includes public adulation (and let’s face it: pressure), most people are better apt to follow through with their dieting. Of course, while you should be willing to pay for your diet program, you shouldn’t have to overpay for it. While there is going to always be a debate amongst dieters between Nutrisystem vs Jenny Craig, the truth is that Jenny Craig is always going to be the more expensive option.

How much more expensive is Jenny Craig? The average cost for a month of a Jenny Craig program is $500-650, while Nutrisystem is $250-350. Does this mean that either one of them are necessarily “better” options than the other? Ultimately, it’s going to depend on what is right for you. If you read a lot of the Jenny Craig reviews online, you are going to get the feeling that the company is driven by money, which may catch some people off guard. While, truthfully, all companies are ultimately driven by profit, reading the reviews you will get an idea that Jenny Craig may not be hiding that drive so well.

This isn’t to say that every one of the Nutrisystem reviews you read are going to be positive. There are going to be some negative reviews in there that you are going to have to weigh. All in all, though, you need to make the decision based on your own needs, not the needs of those people who are writing reviews. If you have the money and don’t mind paying it, you can go with the more expensive option; if not, go with something that you can afford. You are ultimately looking for something that you know you can follow through with.