Skytyping and Wing Walking Help Break Attendance Record at AirVenture Show

The AirVenture air show in Oshkosh, Wisconsin, drew more people than last year’s convention.

“Our attendance was particularly outstanding, since we had some weather challenges mid-week compared to seven perfect days in 2015,” said EAA Chairman Jack Pelton. “Our grounds crew and our volunteers, who number more than 5,000, did a superb job keeping the site ready for visitors and campers who arrived by ground or air.”

According to Fox11News, over 10,000 aircrafts were featured during the convention.

CNN reports that the 2016 AirVenture show also featured skytyping, wing walking and plenty of extreme aerial maneuvering. Skytyping, which is used by advertisers to display messages for more than 2,800 square miles, is a way of mechanical and aeronautical maneuvering throughout the sky.

“My dad bought the airplanes and started this skytyping business when I was 17,” said Larry Arken, commanding officer and flight lead. “Later on, I got him to start into air shows, and I’ve been running it about 22 years.”

Consisting of more than 80 countries, a record 2,369 international visitors registered and attended the show this year. During the week-long convention, approximately 563,000 people entered the AirVenture show and enjoyed 2,855 showplaces, 1,124 homemade aircrafts, 1,032 vintage planes, 371 warbirds, 135 light-sport aircrafts, 101 seaplanes, 41 aerobatic aircrafts, 31 rotorcrafts and 20 non-categorized vehicles.

The wing walker, Ashley Key, drew some of the largest crowds at this year’s convention. She expects to be wing walking until her and her fiancé — who also happens to be her pilot — have their first child, although, she doesn’t consider her profession dangerous.

“The trick is doing it the same every time,” Key said. “When you step off of it, I know exactly where to step. I know how many steps when I’m up there. I know where my feet should go to get back into the cockpit. Do it the same every time, and there are no mistakes.”

Why is Michael Phelps Covered in Red Welts?

While virtually all Americans — 99.7% — believe a healthy smile is socially important, most Olympians naturally sport a gleaming smile while standing on the podium receiving their medals. Who wouldn’t?

This year in Rio, though, the athletes are also showing off bright red polka dots on their skin.

These red dots are scars from the ancient practice of cupping, a technique said to be extremely helpful to stimulate blood flow and to speed up the recovery time for sore muscles.

The ancient practice, developed in China, has a rich history of about 2,200 years. There are even mentions of this healing technique in ancient Greek and Egyptian texts.
On top of other health benefits, it is believed cupping will restore one’s flow of ‘qi’ through their body, the life force responsible for every action we make.
The therapy consists of a specialist warming glass suction cups and placing them on the body. The placement of the cup creates a partial vacuum which relieves pain in a holistic way, and the red welts are a symptom of blood vessels bursting underneath the skin’s surface.

Olympians of all sports are hopping on the trend. Champion Michael Phelps, U.S. male gymnast Alex Naddour, former Olympic swimmer Natalie Couglin, and Belarus swimmer Pavel Sankovich all have polka dotted legs, backs, and arms.

While this practice may be beneficial for Olympians, there hasn’t been much study on the clinical effects of this treatment. According to CNN, researchers have found cupping to be successful for pain management, but there has not been any research completed with a large sample size to draw medical conclusions.

It is not painless either. Users have reported their skin feeling as if it was trapped in a vacuum, while lit on fire. But for Olympians, a gold medal seems worth it.


Photograph: Photograph: Lee Jin-man/AP

Identity Theft Threats Increase Due to Social Media Use and Free Wi-Fi Networks

Identity fraud is surging, according to a new study done by the UK-based company Cifas. What’s even scarier than that fact, though, is that there’s a strong connection between these rising numbers and social media use.

Cifas has stated that Internet fraud perpetrators are increasingly getting people’s personal information from social media sites like Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, which have become a “hunting ground” for these criminals.

Also according to Cifas, some personal details were obtained through automated hacking computers, but more and more personal details were cobbled together through these social media sites.

Identity theft can have extremely serious consequences, resulting in the loss of funds and property. It can also lead to negative marks on personal records. More than one in 10 (11%) of the victims of identity theft say that it has had a negative impact on their abilities to get jobs.

Social media isn’t the only modern Internet convenience that poses a threat to personal security. In a new AARP study, findings suggest that almost half of consumers who use free, public WiFi at least once a month conduct sensitive personal business, like banking, shopping, and e-mailing.

This is usually ok — but sometimes, public networks simply aren’t secured.

As AARP’s Frank Abagnale, one of the leading experts in identity theft, forgery, and secure documents, noted, “The convenience of free wi-fi networks remains a great asset for surfing the internet or checking the news or the latest weather forecast.But consumers should never use unsecured wi-fi to log-in to social media, engage in credit card transactions, or do online banking.”

In the light of these results, AARP is launching the Fraud Watch Network campaign, which is designed to help retail stores to provide safe public Wi-Fi.

Mobile Homes Are Moving Towards More Energy-Efficient Designs

More than 17 million individuals in the U.S. live in manufactured or mobile homes, and they just may be in for more energy-efficient designs in the future.

Manufacturers shipped 70,519 homes in 2015, more than the number of single-family homes built in any state except Texas. Because of the vast amount of homes being shipped to multiple states, the federal government, not the state government, is responsible for their energy regulations.

Unfortunately, the energy provisions of the “HUD Code” (set by the Department of Housing and Urban Development) that governs manufactured housing have not been changed significantly since 1994.

What this means for mobile home owners is that a lot of their money is going towards energy bills. In fact, mobile home owners are paying more than twice what single homeowners pay per square foot.

After several failed attempts at re-drafting the legislation, lawmakers finally came to a decision this past year. DOE estimates the typical manufactured home will save 27% of energy use compared to a home that meets the current HUD Code.

However, energy-efficient homes are making changes in more areas than just mobile homes. Tiny houses are on the rise, and for good reason.

Living in small dwellings has always been popular on the fringes, but the movement has progressed as the average size of a new single family home in the U.S. has grown from 1,800 to nearly 2,700 square feet in the last 40 years.

Much of the movement is based on fiscal reasons, energy conservation, environmental responsibility, and an overall simplification of living situations to allow the owner freedom from heavy rent or mortgages. The movement has grown so large, in fact, that the Tiny House Jamboree has ironically moved to a bigger venue this year.

The Tiny House Jamboree is an annual gathering in Colorado Springs, CO where tiny home movement leaders and an estimated 40,000 enthusiasts come from far and wide to educate themselves and celebrate the art of living small.

“This year is really exciting,” says Tiny House Jamboree Event Coordinator, Cole Whalen, “We’re twice as big as last year with about 50 tiny homes on display and a greater variety than ever before. We’ll have everything from an airstream to tailgate homes, Petite Chateaus which are sort of Alice In Wonderland-style homes, eco-cabins, a mini chapel, and even an ‘Ohm Hom,’ which is a legal backyard dwelling.”

They’re no tiny homes, but mobile homes are about to get more energy-efficient designs, provided the federal government can assure manufacturers follow the guidelines.

DOE still needs to work out how to ensure manufacturers meet the new code without violating HUD’s health and safety requirements, but the fact remains that the new regulations will make life a little easier on the environment and on homeowners.

Consumers Are Partial to Automated Features in their Vehicles

According to a newly released survey from J.D. Power APEAL (Automotive Performance, Execution and Layout), consumers like their cars with driver-assist technologies.

The study revealed that new vehicles with features like blind-spot monitoring and low-speed collision avoidance have overall higher APEAL scores than vehicles that don’t.

The features are appropriately dubbed “gateway technologies,” since they open the way to autonomous, self-driving cars. As consumers continue to gravitate toward these features, manufacturers will continue to produce more, and make them even more comprehensive.

Indeed, as Renee Stephens, the vice president of U.S. automotive quality for J.D. Power, says, “Technology-enabled safety features help drivers feel more comfortable and confident while driving their vehicles.”

But the path towards complete automation won’t be without its challenges, as the recent fatal crash of a self-driving car in Florida proved. The Tesla Model S, which has an autopilot system, was functioning at the time of the accident, and may not have recognized the threat of a truck when it pulled up in front of the vehicle.

Some automakers highly doubt that full automation will ever be possible since there are too many factors for a machine to handle when driving, citing the Tesla incident to reinforce this pint.

However, automated technologies are obviously popular and can have wider implication. For example, the neglect of vehicles costs the economy over $2 billion a year, so perhaps automation technology will focus on the automated maintenance of vehicles instead. That would certainly be a headache that many consumers would be glad to be rid of.

The top five brands rated in the APEAL study were all high-end vehicles, all of which offered driver assist technologies. The brands were Porche, BMW, Lexus, Jaguar, and Mercedes- Benz.