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Sunday, June 28, 2009

ubergizmo's warm tech thoughts keeps grandad's keyboard heated!

According to hand therapists, pounding keys takes its toll on our fingers! Cumulative Trauma Disorder (CTD) eventually stikes. Yet, we keep typing and pounding our way through the day. What are the alternatives? Well, there are proactive measures we can take to become responsible computer users. That's where the ValueRays® products play an important part in our daily computer usage. Here's what ubergizmo had to say about the new ergonomic, infrared heated computer keyboard pad introduced this month by IGMproducts.com and Warm-Mouse-Heated-Keyboard.com both sites are authorized resellers of ValueRays.com products:

from ubergizmo
Thanko isn't the only one in town with a heated keyboard, as they now have a rival in the form of IGM's Heated Keyboard Wrist Pad that looks set to loosen your ligaments while you type out that long-awaited document for your boss. Powered by a USB port, the wrist rest will help warm up your joints while relieving your bones from a fair number of ailments that have long been suspected to be associated with cold and plenty of time on a computer keyboard. This is definitely not a cure for all, but it could do its part in reducing the pain from arthritis or Carpal Tunnel syndrome. Carbon fiber heating elements are used to produce heat in the Far Infrared range which has a long list of reputed health benefits. You picking up one of these for grandad?
ValueRays® = Valuable Infrared Radiant Heat Rays

Cure Your Carpal Tunnel Today
by Tom Nicholson

Thousands of people in the world deal with wrist and hand pain today. Quite a few people who have carpal tunnel end up spending a huge amount of money on products for pain relief. However, most people are never told that they really don’t have to end up spending money to get rid of these problems they have. Just doing some exercises several times each day can help to get rid of the pain for good or it will at least work to reduce it a bit.

You may be wondering why you have never been told about this simple solution before. Frankly the answer is quite simplemoney. There is an entire industry out there selling, marketing, and designing products and medicines to treat the symptoms of carpal tunnel. If you could simply perform a couple easy exercises to alleviate your discomfort than these companies would no longer have a market for their goods and as a result loose their profits.

Some people think that only those that work in offices end up with carpal tunnel problems. This is not the case. You don’t have to be at a computer all day to deal with this problem. There are other occupations that can lead you to end up dealing with various repetitive strain injuries, which can include carpal tunnel. Medical personnel, dentists, grocers, meat cutters, and even carpenters may end up dealing with RSI’s. Just about anyone who repeats a movement over and over again can end up with carpal tunnel pain.

There are many types of repetitive strain injuries; carpal tunnel being the most common. The symptoms of carpal tunnel are numbness or tingling in the fingers, wrists, and/or hands. In some cases a lump in the wrist of the affected arm may be visible. This lump may vary in size and from time to time can swell, becoming quite large. Carpal tunnel is often times painful causing aching or throbbing pain in the affected area.

While some think that carpal tunnel is caused by bad back posture or by the muscle in the wrist, it doesn’t matter which is actually the case. No matter what the root of the problem is, exercise can help to get rid of the pain. You don’t need pain meds, surgery, or any braces for your wrists. You can do these exercises yourself and end up saving quite a bit of money.

The carpal tunnel exercises will ease your pain but may take a few weeks to completely lessen your discomfort so be sure to keep them up. In as little as five to fifteen minutes two to three times a day you will be able to feel significantly better. Can you imagine no longer having to deal with the pain and discomfort of carpal tunnel? Well stop imagining and start on the path to pain free movement. Begin your treatment today.

About the Author:
Tom Nicholson spends his time helping sufferers of carpal tunnel avoid surgery. You can follow this link to see his carpal tunnel exercises.

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Thursday, June 25, 2009

Fairy Blog Mother Grants Wishes for a FREE Mouse Hand Warmer!

ValueRays USB Mouse Hand Warmer blanket pouch with built-in Infrared Heat

It's like a mini-electric blanket for your cold mouse hand! The Mouse Hand Warmer holds your favorite standard sized mouse pad and just about any size computer mouse. It's very soothing to use the ValueRays Warm Mouse and ValueRays Warm Mouse Pad inside the Mouse Hand Warmer blanket to create the ultimate infrared heated mouse hand environment. Soothes aching muscles, stiff joints, sore wrists, and improves blood circulation to affected areas like carpal tunnel problems and tendonitis. Wow! The power of infrared heat for computer users!

by Annette

I honestly thought my "mouse hand" always being cold was something in my head. My hands tend to be cold anyway but the whole cold mouse hand...well yeah, I thought it was just me.Apparently not though as there is a whole line of products to help relieve the cold mouse hand syndrome. Warm Mouse Heated Keyboard products have some of the most unique computer accessories I've seen. They have keyboard pads, mouse pads and 'mice' that use infrared heat to not only warm but soothe and relax your muscles and help to relieve hand pain. I received the ValueRays® Mouse Hand Warmer to review. I plugged it in and within minutes I could I could feel the warmer working. It's not hot or uncomfortable. Not even as warm as a heating pad would get...just...cozy warm?I've used it several times since receiving it and while I do really like it...it's better to use if you're just surfing the net. Switching from keyboard to mouse when working on various projects, though not horribly inconvenient...but it's not as easy as just grabbing the mouse and clicking. I have to slide my hand back in the pouch, which requires looking away from what I'm doing. A whole second more of my time...but, well yeah, you see what I mean. All in all I like the product, I like the concept. And I do use this when I'm just surfing but I think the ValueRays® Warm Mouse I" would actually work better for me and the way I work.I do have one ValueRays® Mouse Hand Warmer to give away to one lucky Fairy Blog Mother reader.

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Sunday, June 21, 2009

Warm Mouse Reviews & Giveaways - Enter to WIN!

Warm Mouse Reviews & Giveaways - Read 'em, Join 'em, Win ' em!
They are Listed Here & Happening Now!

There's a long list of Warm Mouse Reviews and Giveaways happening right now. Get in on the fun and join the contests. Win a free Warm Mouse, Warm Mouse Pad, Heated Mouse Hand Warmer pouch or Warm Keyboard Pad. The reviews and giveaways are sponsored by Warm-Mouse-Heated-Keyboard.com.

Here's the list of current giveaways..... Click the link to enter the contest for the item listed. Visit all the blogs and enter all the contests!

Visit the blogs listed above and make comments to win the prize. See the prizes and more comments listed below. For more details about each item, click the links above and visit Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard.

Here's a little about each item and a link to the contest blog:

ValueRays Warm Mouse Pad Giveaway at Simply Stacie by Stacie!

Don't miss the chance to win a Warm Mouse Pad at Simply Stacie Blog. Read all about it here. The Warm Mouse Pad creates a soothing surface to rest your mouse hand. It's not hot, it's a comfortable warm surface. It also has a 4-port USB hub to plug in extra USB devices. It's safe for the computer mouse, the computer and people using it. The infrared heated pad is a healthy source of therapeutic heat. If your hands get cold, a warm mouse pad is for you.

The Warm Mouse Pad also has a blue light trim. It glows at night. There are two USB plugs to operate and control each function. The mousepad measures about 10" x 10" and is a slick black and gray color. It fits perfectly inside the Mouse Hand Warmer pouch shown below.

ValueRays® Warm Mouse - A Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard Review by Jeri from Pink & Posh

Here's what Jeri has to say about the Warm Mouse! "I am a late night blogger. Usually while my family sleeps, I am bringing you the coolest and and most useful products for women and moms. Without the hustle and bustle of children and chores, I get to slow down and take a break to focus on Pink & Posh. The only disadvantage to this comes from my post-children hormonal reactions. Since having my babies, when I relax, I get cold. I know....weird, right? Well, now I have found a bit of a solution to this. Warm Mouse Heated Keyboard is a company that specializes in computer accessories made especially for people like me who are oddly cold-natured or even for those who have hand pain. I had a chance to review their ValueRays® Warm Mouse, designed to solve the cold hand problem while using the computer."

Head over to Pink & Posh to win the USB Mouse Hand Warmer blanket pictured below.

Warrm Mouse by ValueRays® - A Website Review for Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard by Pam at Aunt Pam's Closet

Pam reviewed the Warm Mouse, and the USB Mouse Hand Warmer is a current giveaway. Visit Aunt Pam's Closet to enter the contest. Pam said, "Do you have cold hands or suffer from any condition that makes your hands hurt, your gonna love this new product from Value Rays, I got the chance to try it out, WOW its awesome it made my hand feel really good and relaxed, I had never heard of a product like this before its awesome!"

Shown above is the USB Mouse Hand Warmer with the Warm Mouse and Warm Mouse Pad. The three items used together create a very therapeutic infrared heat experience for a aching mouse hand. Many people suffer with carpal tunnel syndrome or other computer related hand injuries. Infrared heated computer hand warmers help relieve hand pain and provide healing to sore hands.

ValueRays Warm Keyboard Pad – Exactly What I Needed! by Connie at Miscellaneious Finds 4U

Connie suffers with Repetitive Motion Injury and MS. She works from home and using the computer for her work. She's considered an ecommerce entrepreneur and internet pioneer. Here's what Connie had to say about the Warm Keyboard pad: "I’ve tried many different types of wrist rests to solve the problem. Stand-alone ones as well as one built-into laptop desks. None have worked well, couldn’t be placed in the proper location, or wouldn’t stay put once there. I’d about given up and resolved that I’d be continuing the massive amounts of Ibuprofen I’ve been taking for the pain and continuing to use rolled towels as a pseudo wrist rest until I found the Valuerays Warm Keyboard Pad! It takes care of about 80% of my issues – if I used a traditional desktop computer it’d be 100% relief!" Head over to Miscellaneous Finds 4U and win the Warm Keyboard Pad!

For more about Warm Mouse Reviews, visit the Warm Reviews page.

Here's an extensive article and glossary about Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) and Cumulative Trauma Disorder (CTD) are computer-related hand injuries we need to be more educated about. For pictures and more information about computer-related hand injuries visit the Learning Center at Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard!

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome: The Rise of An Occupational Illness
by Carla R. McMillan

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS), a personal illness categorized under cumulative trauma disorder or repetitive motion trauma, is the fastest growing occupational illness in the United States. Activity centers inside the wrist in the carpal tunnel, a collection of 8-10 tendons surrounding the median nerve. The tendons slide easily encased in the synovial sheath, however when subjected to repeated, limited range motions (i.e. typing), the sheath can swell and fill with fluid, putting pressure on the median nerve and sending pain into the fingers. Symptoms of CTS are the burning, prickling, and tingling within the wrist or first three fingers and thumb. The highest prevalence of self-reported CTS is in the mail service, health care, construction, assembly line, and fabrication industries. In the past, CTS has been limited to the manual labor industry, but a trend is rising in the computer industry as well. American workers who use keyboards daily in work involving extensive data entry and word processing make up 45-75 million of the working population. Twenty-five percent of these operators are inflicted with CTS, and that percentage could double by the year 2000.

Risk factors most strongly associated with exposure to CTS are the repetitive bending or twisting of the hands and wrist at work and the use of vibrating tools. Other factors are the wrist posture and shape while working, table height, the angle of the elbows, and repetitive motion. Factors which are not work related can also contribute to CTS. These include age, race, gender (studies have found that for unknown reasons, females are at higher risk than males), diabetes, and arthritis. Obesity is also a risk factor because water retention adds to muscle and tension stress. Workers with a Body Mass Index (BMI) higher than 29 are four times more likely to present with median mononeuropathy than those with a BMI of less than 25.

Although there are a great number of elements putting workers at risk, CTS is easily preventable and can be controlled. Some preventive measures include resting hands periodically during repetitive activity, exercising to condition and strengthen the hand/arm muscles, minimizing repetition of any movement, varying the position of the arm when performing an activity, and maintaining, not increasing, the pace of work. Reasonable weight loss and diet adjustments can also alleviate CTS. Preventive measures are divided into two main categories, ergonomics and behavior change measures.

In the computing industry, ergonomics has been implemented in the chair, desktop, computer keyboard and mouse. A debatable topic has been the wrist rest, designed to improve wrist posture and lessen wrist extension. It is still unknown whether these help as a comprehensive ergonomics plan or not. The rest should improve wrist posture and support the arm and it should not exert pressure on the Carpal Tunnel area. The wrist rest should not be confused with the palm rest, because it supports only the palm. Users can benefit from the wrist rest because it doesnt allow awkward keystroke or wrist extension. Examples of behavior change measures are worker training, education on correct posture during repetitive tasks, and medical intervention, such as usage of an anti-inflammatory agent (i.e., Aspirin), or surgery, to correct the injury.

After being diagnosed with CTS, there are several levels of treatment. Wrist splinting is efficient yet the angle of immobilization is varied. A blind study compared the relief between splints at 20? and neutral extensions. The study found the neutral angle provided superior symptom relief. Iontophoresis of dexamethasone sodium phosphate has been used for years in treatment of many musculoskeletal inflammatory disorders, and is reported to be used in CTS treatment as well. A non-randomized study using wrist splinting with non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medication and iontophoresis of dexamethasone sodium phosphate revealed a success rate comparable with splinting and injection of dexamethasone into the carpal tunnel space. For a six-month follow-up, out of 23 cases of early to mild CTS, 17% were successfully treated with splints plus non-steroidal anti-inflammatory medications alone. Of the 83%, which failed this treatment and proceeded with iontophoresis of dexamethasone, 58% had a positive response rate. Surgery is generally used as a last resort. The former procedure was to cut the transverse carpal ligament, however an endoscopic procedure was developed to open the carpal tunnel through a small incision in the wrist. Following surgery and treatment, it is estimated 23% of CTS patients return to their profession.

Preventative measures are being taken in various at-risk industries, however construction is an industry where risk still outweighs prevention. A study of 18 disabled and 47 active and retired sheet metal workers showed that symptoms of neck, arm, and hand pain are common in sheet metal workers who are actively working. CTS/hand pain is associated with more time working in the shop, and shoulder pain/injuries are associated with working overhead. This data suggests a division of work tasks in the construction industry increase the risk of Cumulative Trauma Disorder.

Both private and public legal/medical sources have confirmed repetitive strain injuries as the fastest growing occupational hazard today, costing billions of dollars and millions of workdays each year. The cost associated with CTS and Cubital Tunnel Syndrome (CBTS) is immense, each accounting for $1 of every $3 spent for workers compensation, with the cost being $3,500 to $35,000 per case. Repetitive stress injuries have the highest reported total average for workers compensation cost per case from $14,000 to $29,000. The occurrence of CTS as a work-related injury is on the rise, however some patients have had trouble being reimbursed by their insurance for these injuries. In a New York Occupational Health Clinic, 79% of the claims werent initially accepted by the workers compensation insurer and of those challenged cases, 96.3% were accepted later as work-related injuries. Mean time from claim to settlement was 429 days, physician treatment and workers compensation board approval 226 days, and surgery authorization from the board was 318 days.

In its most severe form, CTS can become a lifelong disability that prevents the afflicted patient from performing physically stressful and everyday occupational duties. CTS is a disorder that should be carefully monitored and controlled in all work fields, but workers should not be dismayed by the high risk factors. Through prevention, treatment, and acceptance in the work field, CTS is a personal illness that can be confronted and defeated.

Anti-inflammatory agent: An agent that counteracts or suppresses the inflammatory process.
Behavior change measures: Changing the protocol of high risk job tasks or occupations.
Body Mass Index (BMI): A person's weight in pounds divided by height in inches squared, multiplied by 705.
Cubital Tunnel Syndrome (CBTS): Compression or injury of the ulnar nerve in the cubital tunnel.
Cubital tunnel: Passageway between the bony prominence of the inside of the elbow (medial epicondyle) and the tip of the elbow (olecranon process).
Cumulative Trauma Disorder (CTD) Response to the repetitive motion and overuse of a muscle in an incorrect or static posture.
Carpal Tunnel Syndrome (CTS): A condition caused by compression of a nerve where it passes through the wrist into the hand and characterized especially by weakness, pain, and disturbances of sensation in the hand.
Dexamethasone: A synthetic glucocorticoid C22H29FO5 used especially as an anti-inflammatory agent.
Ergonomics: The study of how the laws of nature affect you and your work environment. In an office environment, this includes interaction with workspace, computers, tools, and furniture.
Iontophoresis: The introduction of an ionized substance (as a drug) through intact skin by the application of a direct electric current.
Median mononeuropathy: A disorder involving loss of movement or sensation to an area, caused by damage to the median nerve.
Median nerve: The nerve that takes its course along the middle of the arm and forearm through the hand, lying between the ulnar and musculo-spiral and radial nerves.
Repetitive motion trauma: The injury to living tissue caused by movement applied to muscles and joints the same way all the time.
Repetitive strain injuries: A category of injuries involving damage to muscles, tendons and nerves caused by overuse or misuse; these injuries can result from a single incident or develop slowly over time.
Synovial sheath: An encasing which serves to facilitate the gliding of tendons in the osseo-fibrous canals through which they pass.

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Monday, June 15, 2009

Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard -- ValueRays® Healthy Ergonomic Computer Official Launch

ValueRays 4-Piece Set - $ave when purchased as a set

Computer use has infiltrated every aspect of our lives, and we have become dependent upon the computer for daily living. The computer has become a tool more so now, than ever before. Therefore, computer-related injuries are on the rise. Summer, Winter, Spring or Fall -- no matter which time of year -- we need to use the computer in ways to keep us healthy and free from computer-related injuries.

(PRWEB) June 15, 2009 -- http://www.warm-mouse-heated-keyboard.com/ announced today its official launch for using the computer in healthy ways any time of year. There's computer ergonomic news written daily about the warnings of long-tern computer usage. Computer use has infiltrated every aspect of our lives, and we have become dependent upon the computer for daily living. The computer has become a tool more so now, than ever before. Therefore, computer-related injuries are on the rise. Just like the telephone and TV, if the home does not have a computer, people miss important communications! But, using the computer properly is the key to long term, healthy living.

"The use of the computer is not going to fade or go away anytime soon. Make the computer work for you, not harm you," said Owner of Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard, Anna Miller, "Summer, Winter, Spring or Fall -- no matter which time of year -- we need to use the computer in ways to keep us healthy and free from computer-related injuries."

http://www.warm-mouse-heated-keyboard.com/ has a mission: To create a healthy, comfortable, computer workstation using deep healing infrared heated computer peripherals. Infrared heat therapy has been around for a long time and used by the Chinese and Japanese for centuries. Simply stated, infrared heat is the deep warmth felt by the sun without the harmful ultraviolet (UV) rays.

ValueRays® (valuable infrared radiant heat rays) is the trademark of the Warm-Mouse-Heated-Keyboard.com products. The products have been tested and evaluated by members of various fields including Occupational Therapy, Hand Therapy, Massage Therapy and by people suffering from medical conditions like Arthritis, Fibromyalgia, Raynaud's, Poor Circulation, etc. Reports indicate the use of ValueRays® infrared heat creates improved blood circulation, reduced stress of daily tasks and the ability to use the computer for longer periods of time pain-free.

The Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard website offers a variety of programs for its users: an Affiliate Marketing Program to earn 20% commission on sales, a Wholesale Program for resellers at very low prices with high profit margins, a Drop-Ship Program, a Link Exchange Program, Product Reviews & Giveaways, and many other participative programs for consumers, webmasters and merchants. Plus, the Learning Center at Warm-Mouse-Heated-Keyboard.com provides information for the curious to keep well-informed about the value of using infrared heat at the computer and support for cold hand pain.

"We welcome partnerships," said Anna Miller. "We want to create a website where people can come to do more than shop. We offer a small list of products with HUGE benefits for their users!"

Here's a list of products available at Warm-Mouse-Heated-Keyboard.com:

ValueRays® Warm Mouse - a heated computer mouse.
(http://www.warm-mouse-heated-keyboard.com/valuerays-warm-mouse-p-4.html )
ValueRays® Warm Mouse Pad - a heated mouse pad.
ValueRays® Warm Keyboard Pad - a heated computer keyboard pad.
ValueRays® Mouse Hand Warmer - a heated hand warmer pouch.
Mouse Hand Warmer® (Non-USB) - an eco friendly, USA made, hand warmer.

Plus, ValueRays® USB Hand Warmer Sets are available at savings when compared to individual prices, shoppers receive Free USA Shipping & pay No Sales Tax, and can use coupon code BIZCARD for an extra 5% off their order.

Warm-Mouse-Heated-Keyboard.com partnered with Internet giant, Google Checkout, to provide shoppers a secure and confident experience. For more details, and to become a virtual partner with the newly launched Warm-Mouse-Heated-Keyboard.com website, please visit the website and complete the Contact Us form. Expect a quick response.

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Sunday, June 14, 2009

Pet Mouse Ball Story from a Warm Mouse Perspective!

And, we re-run the above cartoon in honor of Fizz!

The X-ray is of a bull mastif who chewed his owner's computer mouse and swollowed the mouse ball! It stayed lodged inside until it caused massive pain. Owners couldn't even touch the poor pup it hurt so badly. With worries about the demise of their best friend, the X-ray proved to be a repairable injury. Read the full story below from Shropshirestar.


A Shropshire dog which chewed through every pair of its owners’ shoes as a pup is still chewing her way through life more than seven years on – only now it’s computer equipment.

Fizz, a bull mastif, is recovering from emergency surgery after X-rays showed she had a “foreign object” inside her. It turned out to be a computer mouse ball she had destroyed four months earlier.

The ball inside the dog’s stomach caused so much pain, Fizz’s owners, Alison and Allan Wood, of The Talbot Inn, St Georges, could not even stroke her.

Fearing it could be a tumour, the worried couple tried to think what their beloved dog had been chewing lately – but decided Fizz had been well behaved in recent weeks.

Then Mrs Wood said she remembered the remains of the computer mouse they had found and realised the ball must be out of the mouse.

Pleased to have Fizz back home, Mrs Wood, 34, said: “Fizz goes through fazes. She will leave stuff alone for months and then she will suddenly start chewing again.

“When she was a puppy she chewed every pair of my shoes but didn’t touch a single pair of my husbands.”

She added: “The mouse was on the computer desk and she ate the whole thing.

“We thought she would pass it through and didn’t think anything more about it until she went in with a water infection. She hasn’t touched anything since and I’m hoping she will never do it again – hopefully she has learned her lesson.”

Mrs Wood said seven-year-old Fizz “flinched” every time the vet at Companion Care at Pets At Home, Wrekin Retail Park in Wellington, stroked her, which encouraged him to do some X-rays. “At first the vet said it was too big for a mouse ball so we thought it was a golf ball. It’s been there for months, bless her.

“She’s quite a character in the pub and known by everyone but doesn’t like spending a lot of time in the pub because she likes her own space,” Mrs Wood said.

By Kirsty Smallman
Needing a new computer mouse? Free Shipping & No Sales Tax, plus use coupon code BIZCARD for an exta 5% off! The ValueRays Warm Mouse does NOT have a roller ball. It's an USB optical heated computer mouse!

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Warm Mouse Blog: Creating A Virtual Partnership

Virtual partnerships build close relationships and are a two-way street with a win-win goal. There are two new programs available at Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard to create virtual partnerships with other websites and bloggers.

ValueRays Affiliate Program
This is a NEW Affiliate Program! Get in on the ground floor with the ValueRays® Brand! Perfect to promote on any website. Everyone visiting your blog or website has a computer and needs our products. Make Money Fast with innovative, ergonomic, healthy USB Infrared Heat Computer peripherals:

ValueRays® Warm Mouse

Perfect pricing for easy, fast selling products. Product prices range from $19.95 to $99.95 each. The average sale is about $25-$35. The ValueRays® Brand delivers healthy, deep-healing infrared heat therapy for people who suffer with cold hands and hand pain when using the computer: Poor Circulation, Arthritis, Raynaud's, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Diabetes, Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI), Cumulative Trauma Disorder (CTD), Tendonitis & many more conditions with cold hand pain.

ValueRays Wholesale Program
Place a wholesale order online for ValueRays® USB Hand Warmers. Purchase USB Infrared Heat Ergonomic Computer Workstation products directly from the manufacturer. No muss. No fuss. Leave all the details to us! We manufacture the ValueRays® Brand! All wholesale orders ship from Palm Springs, California. Small, medium, large quantities available for all size businesses. No pre-approval required. No lengthy application process. Place a wholesale order fast and easy through our online wholesale store. Contact Us with questions.

ValueRays manufactures and sells non-USB and USB infrared heat therapy computer accessories designed to create an ergonomic computer workstation and keep hands warm while using the computer. To see our hand warmers for sale, please click on the Products link. Our Mouse Hand Warmer® mouse pad, USB heated mouse pad, heated mouse and warm keyboard pad have become very popular. If you or someone you know has cold hands when using the computer, our high-quality products are for you! The infrared heat therapy provides soothing relief to aching muscles and stiff joints. Do you have a cold mouse hand? Do your computer keyboard hands get cold? If so, you can enjoy the healing effects of a deep penetrating infrared heated warm mouse, warm mouse pad, warm keyboard pad and mouse hand warmer blanket.

Plus, the Link Exchange Program offers a place to exchange your site's link with the Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard website. If you have a website or blog, consider a virtual partnership with Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard.
Top 7 Tips To Creating A Virtual Partnership
by Jeff Zbar from Top7Business

A "virtual partnership" is an alliance between two or more entrepreneurs, free agents or other independent professionals designed to unite their unique skills for short- or long-term projects. The goal in setting up a virtual partnership should be to strengthen your own skills while offering a wider array of services to your - and your partners' - client base.

Here's some points to consider:

1- Recruit wisely. Identify and tap participants based on their talents. They should bring non-competing skills that compliment your own and those of your other partners. Tap participants also based on the client base they serve and their ability to bring new work to the group. If one participant is not a good marketer, they might rely on the other partners to find work, which could build resentment among the group.

2- Build a bond. Make sure the participants can work together, whether in a common setting or remotely. Host a brainstorming session or introductory meeting to ensure a good atmosphere of trust and camaraderie exists. When bidding or working on a project, partners become a reflection of you and your professionalism. Make sure you know and like their work style.

3- Build a contact list of various "partners." This way, you can offer the best tactician based on the clients' specific needs. Also, you won't be left in the lurch if a partner is busy on another project when you come calling.

4- Draft an agreement. This will include details about who will do what tasks in the partnership. Revise it with each new project to address new, specific needs. The agreement should outline specifically the contracted client fee and each partner's expected share of that fee. It should note whether a finder's fee will be paid, how much and to whom. It also should note whether each partners' expenses will be reimbursed and by whom.

5- Define in writing - and follow up after signing - expectations for communications between team members, ensuring priorities, methods, responsibilities and expectations are understood as the project progresses. Ensure that the project objectives and people's job expectations are well outlined, so two people don't expect to handle the same task on the same project. Outline the order of steps needed to accomplish a project. This will help ensure that workers are brought on only when their skills are best suited for a particular phase of the project.

6- Set up an exit plan. The contract should have a finite duration, usually linked to the completion of the particular project. It should make clear that the contract exists only for a particular client project and that the contract expires once that project is completed.

7 - Meet with your attorney and tax advisor to ensure the contract and compensation plans are appropriate and legal.

Zbar, the "Chief Home Officer," is a contributing editor to Home Office Computing and Entrepreneur's Home Office, and his work appears in Advertising Age, Computerworld and the Fort Lauderdale Sun-Sentinel. He is the author of Home Office Know-How (Dearborn), and Your Profitable Home Business Made E-Z on CD-ROM (Made E-Z Products, Inc.).

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Friday, June 12, 2009

Warm Thoughts of Mice & Man's Computer Mouse Healthy Use

Health problems are a drag. Medical conditions have no boundaries and attack people of all ages. Taking a healthy proactive approach to using the computer is smart. There are specific ways to disinfect the computer mouse and computer keyboard -- and the other computer products we touch (and others may touch). Germs are spread and people get sick. On top of all the contagious virus attacks in the media these days, it's wise to think about ways to keep our home work space clean and free of contaminants.

Another thought is to use the computer to provide proactive measures to help prevent the onset of computer related hand injuries. That's one of the purposes of the warm mouse shown above. If you have arthritis or poor circulation, a deep healing infrared heated computer mouse would surely feel wonderful to hold when using the computer. The infrared heat rays help improve circulation and reduce pain.

Cold hands are common for many computer users. The unique experience is so new, most computer users with cold hands think they are the only ones who have the condition. But, it's fairly common among people who spend endless hours clicking the mouse and pounding the keyboard. Heated computer gadgets and USB hand warmers are becoming very popular items to have on hand, for your cold hands, as office products.

Here's a list of the best items your money can buy to keep warm. They are cost-effective and energy-efficient USB hand warmers:

And, the warmth is not a seasonal luxury. People with arthritis in their hands or those who suffer from carpal tunnel symptoms will adore the infrared heated computer devices throughout the year!

Trust MI-7700R Computer Mouse

Trust MI-7700R Computer Mouse
from Computer Mouse

Trust has become synonymous with stylish and uniquely designed computer hardware devices that also deliver high reliability and efficiency in its performance.

The Trust MI-7700R Computer Mouse is so smart and stylish that you will definitely choose it over the others. It comes in a very unique shape that makes it very easy for you to hold and work. The ergonomic design ensures that you do not experience any kind of discomfort or stress on your fingers however long you work on it.

This sleek data input device will redefine your style of working on your computer making it fun and interesting all the way. This wireless device provides you with 8 buttons, a tilt scroll wheels and extra Vista/Media player buttons. This mouse will definitely make your work easy and effortless. These special buttons helps to control media player, zoom in/out and web browsing.

Further, this Trust computer mouse consists of an ultra small USB receiver that ensures its full compatibility with your notebook PC. You don’t have to unplug the USB receiver anymore. The USB receiver comes with a gold plated connector that ensures optimum transfer of signals.

The sleek Trust MI-7700R Computer Mouse supports a 2.4 GHz wireless operation that ensures smooth and immediate mouse response. It has a range of up to 8 m. The Smart link technology ensures easy and automatic wireless connection.

It also promises an extra long battery life because of its latest power saving technology. The special buttons switch sensitivity to 800 to 1600 dpi. It uses laser technology to detect movement.

The minimum operating system required includes Microsoft Windows 2000, Microsoft Windows Vista, Microsoft Windows XP and Microsoft Windows XP Media Centre Edition. This elegant black coloured device measures 8.2 inches in width and 9.4 inches in height. It weighs 1.25 pounds. The company provides 2 years warranty on this device.


Of mice and men
by Dan Kaufman

Using your computer doesn't have to be a drag (and click), writes Dan Kaufman.

It may have a cute name but the seemingly innocent computer mouse is often considered the least ergonomic part of your computer.

It forces you to splay your arm out at an unnatural angle - and the wider your keyboard, the worse this gets; it requires you to navigate a cursor to a precise position on the screen by moving the whole hand rather than using specific fingers, which are better suited for precision work; and, to add insult to injury (often literally), it's designed to make you click and double-click its buttons using fingers when thumbs are better suited for the task.

We could talk about the alternatives, such as trackpads (that allow you to use your fingers on a pad to move the cursor), trackballs ( moving a ball to position the cursor) or graphic tablets that involve holding a pen. Yet none of these has taken off in a spectacular fashion - mainly because they just don't feel that natural, either. We're sure many people would argue with us on this but, having used and tested a variety of these devices for more than 10 years, we just don't find them comfortable.

There are, however, some things you can do to improve the situation. You can use keyboard shortcuts when possible - for example, pressing control and C to copy something is more efficient than navigating your cursor up to Edit, clicking, then moving down to Copy and clicking again. You can slow your cursor speed down to make navigating easier. You can improve your posture, take regular screen breaks and get into the habit of using your shoulder and elbow to move the mouse rather than controlling the movement from your wrist.

Finally, you can buy a more ergonomic mouse.

The most important feature to look for in a mouse is that it's arched high enough to fit your hand comfortably. Most mice are too flat, meaning we need to twist (or pronate) our wrists to use them when instead our hands ought to be in a more vertical position.

If at all possible, try to play with the mouse before buying it to make sure it's the right size and fit for your hand and that it easily allows you to keep your hand, wrist and forearm in alignment. The buttons should be easy to press without you having to strain your fingers.

A common problem with mice is that some people grip (or pinch) them too hard with their thumbs. Because of this some mice have little rests for your thumb, such as the Microsoft and Contour mice reviewed here, but whether this actually stops you from pinching the mouse is arguable. What we will say is that the more relaxed your hand is on the mouse, the less likely you are to grip it - which is why a good fit is needed.

Unfortunately, however, left-handed users have few options available to them - the only mouse reviewed here that has a left-handed version is the Contour Perfit. Another option is the E-Quill AirO2bic mouse (www.aerobicmouse.com).

These days many mice are wireless and feature optical tracking, instead of relying on the tracking ball that sits underneath older and cheaper mice.

Optical tracking is the more important of these two features as it makes a mouse more accurate, doesn't require a mouse mat and also won't get clogged up with dust and dirt - meaning that the days of frantically moving your mouse up and down to get the cursor where you want it to go are over. Having a wireless mouse simply means that ... well, that it's cordless. Most wireless mice also need to be fitted with new batteries once or twice a year.

The Microsoft Arc Computer Mouse Microsoft Wireless Mobile Computer Mouse 3000

Wireless Notebook Presenter Computer Mouse 8000

Mobile Mice: The Latest Trend in Wireless Technology
By: Casi Gilliam

Technology has done a very cruel thing to the modern-day mouse: It severed its tail! Have you ever worked with a laptop computer and a corded mouse? If so, you're likely aware of how inconvenient this can be. Fortunately, with so many wireless options currently on the market, you'll never need to bother with a cord again.

Wireless mice come in several different categories, including mini mice, laser mice and optical mice. Some are minuscule, such as the Microsoft Arc Mouse, while others conform to the palm of your hand, like the Microsoft Wireless Optical Mouse 5000. What's more, some mice, such as the Microsoft Wireless Notebook Mouse 3000 Special Edition, even come in different colors.

In addition, laser and optical mice users report that this technology is more precise, responsive and smoother to guide. Interested in knowing whether you have an optical or laser mouse? Check to see if the bottom of your mouse features a red beam of light, instead of a ball. Optical and laser mice will also allow you to toss out your archaic mouse pad. So, are you thinking about purchasing a new wireless mouse for your laptop? If so, decide whether you want one that's rechargeable or if you're willing to occasionally change its batteries.

Innovative Options

One of the higher-end options that offers a comprehensive office solution is the Wireless Notebook Presenter Mouse 8000. This multipurpose mouse allows PowerPoint users to scroll through presentations from up to 30 feet away. Consumers can also control multimedia presentations and digital entertainment without physically touching anything. Want to extend the mouse's battery life? Simply turn it on and off - it's that easy.

Also, connecting this mouse to your notebook is feasible with 2.4GHz of Bluetooth technology. (Note: 2.4 GHz refers to the wavelength frequency that wirelessly transmits information to and from your mouse/laptop.) The Presenter 8000 also features a laser pointer, which enables consumers to highlight information during a presentation. Additionally, the mouse features a magnifier, which allows you to point and click to enlarge and edit details. Another bonus: The Presenter 8000 comes with a versatile carrying case to protect your mouse while you travel. However, this mouse definitely comes at a price: It retails for approximately $75.

Microsoft Wireless Mobile Mouse 3000

An ingenious low-end, everyday option is the Microsoft Wireless Notebook Mouse 3000 Special Edition, which retails for about $30. Before I discuss the technical specifications of this mouse, note that it comes in a variety of colors, including Crème Brulèe, Milk Chocolate and Dragon Fruit. This optical mouse boasts more than six months of battery life and a snap-in receiver. When you're ready to work, simply plug the receiver into your USB port, and it will snap to the bottom of the mouse. Consumers of this product also give it high marks for transportability and minimal battery drainage between uses.

So, what are you waiting for? Step away from that burdensome mouse on your notebook computer and explore the wonderful options available in wireless-mouse technology. Most likely, you'll be glad you did!

Talk About It
Do you use a wireless computer mouse? Would you recommend this technology to others? Please share your likes/grips about wireless mice with the OfficeArrow community.

How Often Do You Disinfect Your Computer Keyboard And Computer Accessories-phone, Usb Cables, Hard Drive, Etc.
from XLGLWL.com

Stomach Flu Spread By Contaminated Computer Keyboards

The highly contagious norovirus, often called the stomach flu, can be passed from one person to another through contact with commonly shared items such as computer keyboards and computer mice, U.S. health officials report.

The virus, which is common in winter and is the most frequent cause of outbreaks of vomiting and diarrhea in the United States, is often contracted in schools, at work and on cruise ships.

On Thursday, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported on a norovirus outbreak at a Washington, D.C., elementary school last February in which some of the victims picked up the virus from contaminated computer equipment.

“There is evidence that shared objects and surfaces help transmit disease,” said Dr. Shua Chai, a CDC epidemiologist and co-author of the report, published in the Jan. 4 issue of the CDC’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.

“This is the first time that we have demonstrated that keyboards and computer mice can be a source of transmission of norovirus,” he added.

Of the 314 students and 66 staffers at the D.C. school, 103 came down with the illness — 79 students and 24 staff members. To find the sources of contamination, samples were taken from various surfaces around the school. In one first-grade classroom, a computer mouse and computer keyboard tested positive for norovirus, according to the report.


How to disinfect your computer
by Patty Harshbarger

As we watch out for swine flu, germ-catching spaces are at the center of attention. Computer keyboards have long been suspected of carrying more than their fair share of germs. And honestly, how often do we stop and wipe down a keyboard or mouse?

Keyboards attached to desktop computers can be cleaned by blowing out or carefully vacuuming dust and debris. They can be lightly sprayed and wiped with a disinfectant. Grimy, old desktop keyboards can be easily replaced. Just purchase a fresh one for $10 to $15, plug it in where the old one was, and you have a new germ-free keyboard.

The mouse can be cleaned as well with a damp cloth. A ball mouse often gets clogged with dust, which can affect its performance. To clean the ball mechanism, turn the mouse over, unscrew the circular piece around the ball, and gently clean out the dust inside An old mouse can also be replaced easily and inexpensively. Older model computers should be shut down before changing out the keyboard or mouse.

On a laptop computer, cleaning the keyboard can be a bit more delicate. Avoid spraying the surface. Instead, while the computer is off, blow off the keyboard with canned air or other blower. Use a damp cloth to wipe off the keys and other surfaces.

Take care that sprays do not come in contact with the laptop screen. A clean cloth dampened with water will usually clean the screen well. When there is a film or difficult smear, I have used a gentle dish soap, but not without great care. In our computer repair shop, we have seen laptops come in with screens permanently damaged by sprays.

Other areas of the computer that will benefit from regular cleaning are fans and vents. Blowers are preferred over vacuums due to static electricity. Computers will overheat if fans are clogged with dust, and damage to circuit boards can occur. When blowing out dust, use caution around the mechanism of CD and DVD drives. The optical reader is a sensitive component.

Other daily care of laptop computers includes unplugging cards, USB devices and cords when storing. Damage to jacks and ports are common complaints and often expensive fixes. Perhaps the most common repair to laptop computers is replacement of the power jack. The part itself is inexpensive, but in order to de-solder the old part and re-solder a new one, the laptop must be completely disassembled, then reassembled.

If you are someone who likes to remove stickers from your computer, be sure to leave one sticker in tact. The Windows license key or certificate of authenticity, is an expensive sticker to replace. It shows the 25-digit license key of your computer’s operating system, and is needed for reloads or hard drive replacements. Replacement of this license costs $130 or more.

Patty Harshbarger, owner of Computer Renaissance in Bradenton, can be reached at patty@cr-bradenton.com.
Scientists develop a “sense of the helmet” through the brain to control computer
by Haven Frbiz

A few days ago, Russian scientists consciousness through the brain to control computers, the system includes electrodes formed by a helmet and the brain can read pulse and converted to become a computer screen characters of special procedures. When a person wearing such a helmet, only to think the brain can control the computer play the characters, or control of certain mechanical equipment, the technology for the mobility of those groups of people with disabilities is good news.

Neural computer scientists in charge of interactive projects- Carlo Krzyzewski (Dmitry Karlovsky) said: “The paralysis of the helmet device through which information can be conveyed to the outside world.”

At the same time, Carlo Krzyzewski has led the research team designed a micro-model, it can be based on awareness of people’s brain to the corresponding operation guidelines. At present, there are a lot of paralysis and the disabled, over the years scientists have been dedicated to how to help them to change their life, and the current helmet device of this invention is to find a solution.

Combination of education technology now allows the brain paralysis robot can move and easy to move a computer mouse, nerve paralysis plastic scientists will allow people to live more normal. The study, published in “Nature” magazine.

Another experiment on two monkeys showed that the new awareness of the brain controlling instruments can paralyze the average per minute on the screen play 15 characters. The United States Brown University, Providence City, John - Donohue (John Donoghue) said: “The brain is instilling a new technology type of neural technology ‘launch platform’.”

He and his colleagues pointed out that such a helmet-like brain can make sense of control devices paralyzed 25-year-old man clutched tight mechanical hand, the use of mechanical arm moving objects, and can control a computer mouse.
Tech History: MOUSE
from Nation ITT FAQ

Years before personal computers and desktop information processing became commonplace or even practicable, Douglas Engelbart had invented a number of interactive, user-friendly information access systems that we take for granted today: the computer mouse was one of his inventions. At the Fall Joint Computer Conference in San Francisco in 1968, Engelbart astonished his colleagues by demonstrating the aforementioned systems---using an utterly primitive 192 kilobyte mainframe computer located 25 miles away! Engelbart has earned nearly two dozen patents, the most memorable being perhaps for his "X-Y Position Indicator for a Display System": the prototype of the computer "mouse" whose convenience has revolutionized personal computing.

Mouse (computer), a common pointing device, popularized by its inclusion as standard equipment with the Apple Macintosh. With the rise in popularity of graphical user interfaces in MS-DOS; UNIX, and OS/2, use of mice is growing throughout the personal computer and workstation worlds. The basic features of a mouse are a casing with a flat bottom, designed to be gripped by one hand; one or more buttons on the top; a multidirectional detection device (usually a ball) on the bottom; and a cable connecting the mouse to the computer. By moving the mouse on a surface (such as a desk), the user typically controls an on-screen cursor. A mouse is a relative pointing device because there are no defined limits to the mouse's movement and because its placement on a surface does not map directly to a specific screen location. To select items or choose commands on the screen, the user presses one of the mouse's buttons, producing a "mouse click."

Mouse Patent # 3,541,541 issued 11/17/70 for X-Y Position Indicator For A Display System Douglas Engelbart's patent for the mouse is only a representation of his pioneering work in the design of modern interactive computer environments.

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Thursday, June 11, 2009

Warm Technology Tid Bits, Computer Mouse Updates & Toys!

The brand new ValueRays Warm Keyboard Pad is the answer to cold keyboard hands, arms and wrists. Infrared Heat is delivered through the fabric of this ergonomic keyboard pad. It's the perfect compliment to the Mouse Hand Warmer blanket and Warm Mouse. All available online at the Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard Website!

Visit the "Feed Your Pig Blog" and enter the Giveaway Contest for the ValueRays Warm Keyboard Pad! One lucky winner will receive a ValueRays ergonomic infrared heated computer keyboard pad. Contest ends July 11, 2009.

Logitech MX Air Rechargeable Cordless Air Mouse
Author: Nicole Hait

Our computers are part of who we are in a very literal sense. We kick back and spend much of our lives – both work and personal – sitting at our computer, mouse in hand. Unfortunately, that relaxed feeling of sitting in your favorite ergonomically correct chair is interrupted when you remember that your mouse isn't, literally, attached to your hand and requires a flat surface to perform its mousely duties. Ah, but wait. There's a new style of mouse that is becoming not just a fad, but almost a necessity. The "air mouse" is exactly what you are looking for to free yourself from that solid parallel plane.

Logitech's state-of-the-art MX Air Rechargeable Cordless Air Mouse is one model that deserves a second look. This little beauty not only performs accurately on your desk, but also uses Freespace motion sensing while in the air to control your favorite media. PC-based media is a breeze to control with "intuitive wave-and-click control," boasts the Logitech website. As if you are conducting your own orchestra, you are able to adjust volume with a wave of the hand and skip tracks with a graceful flip of the wrist.

Step out of the office and into your entertainment room where – if you run your cable and television through Windows XP Media Center – you can easily save DVDs to your computer's hard drive, all with a gesture of the hand. Scrolling has suddenly become lightning fast, whether you choose to use the MX Air Rechargeable Cordless Air Mouse on your desk or in the air. Presentations will suddenly become less awkward, as you have the freedom to control your PowerPoint presentation from across the room.

The MX Air Rechargeable Cordless Air Mouse is available for purchase from www.logitech.com for $149.99 plus shipping. It comes with a recharging station, micro-receiver, AC power cord, Logitech SetPoint software CD, polishing cloth, user guide and 3-year limited warranty. The MX Air Rechargeable Cordless Air Mouse contains a lithium-ion battery so it takes less time to juice it back up and lasts longer than a standard rechargeable mouse. At 2.4 GHz, the MX Air Mouse also gives you the convenience of a 30 foot range, so you can take charge of your media just about anywhere in a room.

Apple Mighty Mouse and Windows PC Compatibility
from Quick Online Tips

Mighty Mouse is available as a wireless and wired version. So I checked the site for Mighty Mouse specifications for Windows compatibility, and I found Wireless mouse required Mac OS X v10.4.8 or later while the wired version could work with Mac OS X 10.4.8 or Windows 2000 or Windows XP. Though I use Windows Vista, I guessed it should work (but Apple would have good reasons not to add it there). Though I preferred the wireless mouse, the published compatibility encouraged me to buy the wired mouse.

I realized that though both wired and wireless mouse appear to be similar, there are some key differences – Wireless mouse is a laser mouse, but wired is an optical mouse only.

Mighty Mouse Installation
As I opened the Mighty Mouse box, the packaging was amazing as usual. I held the fine white smooth mouse in my hands, and plugged in the USB cord to my computers USB port. As I moved the mouse, it worked instantly. No software needed.

The left and right keys are not visible and the entire mouse is encased in a nice and smooth white body. But the moment you click the touch sensitive keys, both the left click and right click work just as they should. Though the keys are not as easily clicked as my Microsoft mouse, yet they do a fine job.

Next I test the Scroll Wheel. It is not a bidirectional wheel, but a small pea-sized roller with which you can scroll 360 degrees in any direction! And it works really well once you set the mouse settings on your computer. Press the scroll wheel and the whole front of the mouse depresses to act as a middle click button. May seem a little awkward at first, but now I am used to it.

Then there are 2 force sensing side buttons, which were really hard to press (but maybe that’s why they are called force-sensing) – they worked as the back button by default in our browser.

Try Apple Mighty Mouse
So basically all the mouse buttons and scroll wheel were working as they should by default and was fully compatible with my Windows PC without any software. Now I have been using the Mighty mouse for a few weeks, and it is working really nice. My major concern is the difficult usability of the hard side buttons. The best feature was the amazing 360 degree scroll wheel, which takes care of all your scrolling needs in every direction (try scrolling diagonally!). The product is of superb quality, like all Apple products are.

Now I have an Apple keyboard and Apple Mighty Mouse running on my Dual Monitor Dell Windows Computer and its just great. Well there are other better computer mouse out there which are cheaper, with more buttons, easier clicking, more ergonomic – but for Windows users looking to try the Apple experience, you can try this mouse as it is well compatible. And the cost is $49 only! You can buy it online from the Official Apple Store.

Wooden Computer Mouse
This wooden mouse is handmade from Chinese flowering ash.
from Toxel

Jupiter Mouse accelerometer mouse. It’s a rare item that pleases both gadget and nature lovers, but the Jupiter Mouse from Actbrise Electronics does just that. This wooden mouse is handmade from Chinese flowering ash in Japan’s rural Gunma prefecture and earns its name from the natural wood grain swirls and click button that resembles the largest planet’s famous spot.

The innovative design, however, isn’t limited to form: the cursor moves in direction and velocity according to the tilt of the spherical mouse, which rests comfortably in the palm of your hand. The Jupiter mouse not only brings a refreshing natural element to your desk bit also offers an exciting new approach to navigating your computer screen.
Jupiter Mouse features:

• Includes: mouse, stand
• Size: W60 x D60 x H55mm
• Weight: 92g (includes cable)
• Interface: USB2.0/1.1
• Cable length: 180cm
• Compatible OS: Windows98/98SE/Me/2000/XP/Vista/CE2.11
• Manual: Japanese

Transforming Laser Mouse - Trypticon
from Big Bad Toy Store

This Mouse is for Adult Collectors. It may contain sharp points, small parts that are choking hazards, and other elements that are not suitable for children under 16 years of age.

Features :
- Windows98/Me/2000/XP/Vista,Mac
- Interface : USB
- Button : 3
- Resolution : 800 dpi
Product Number: TAK10925
Shipping Weight: 1.40 pounds

Thanko LazyMouse2: computer mouse and remote control without desk
from Gadget Folder

In the market of computer accessories are increasing device that can create for computer users the most comfort while working. It is not always, but the variety is impressive. Thanko has released a new wireless computer mouse, LazyMouse2 (GoroNeDeMouse2). With it you can control the computer in normal mode and without using a table/desk or other horizontal surface. Special optical controller and additional navigation keys located on the back of mouse under thumb cuffs hands. Thus, if the mouse buttons to turn down, it becomes a kind of remote control. As a result, the mouse, you can keep on weight without compromising its functionality. Such a decision may be user-friendly laptops. LazyMouse2 is a small flat device, the size of device is 90×49.8×15 mm. Working time offline to 4 hours. The device is compatible with operating systems like Windows and Mac. LazyMouse2 in Japan is about $ 50.

The Daily Engadget: World's Smallest Mouse, Twitter By Fax
by Chad Mumm

Our friends over at Engadget obsessively cover everything new in gadgets and consumer electronics, which is why we compile this daily roundup of their top stuff (or, at least, what we think is tops). For more details on any of these stories, click on the Engadget links in each story below.

Smallest Computer Mouse
TEC's new Lingo bills itself as the world's smallest mouse, and we'd be hard pressed to argue -- it's only slightly larger than a AA battery.

Thinnest RFID Transmitter
CenTrak has come out with the world's thinnest RFID (the small radio transmitters useful for tracking things like endangered animals and office workers) and it's barely larger than a standard office badge. Perfect for unblinking, all-knowing, information gathering.

'The Beatles: Rock Band' Pre-Orders Begin
'The Beatles: Rock Band' is coming out on September 9th, but anxious types can now pre-order it from their favorite game retailer. Also look for two more custom, Beatles axes available for $99 on top of the game bundle.

Twitter and Facebook By Fax
Do you have a computer illiterate relative who somehow feels compelled to be a part of the Twitter and Facebook scene? For a monthly fee of $14, they can fax their handwritten Tweets (and status updates) to Celery, a company that will transcribe and then blast them out to grandchildren and nephews everywhere.

A Robot On Facebook
Although we've dreamed of having a robot friend since we were kids, apparently everyday humans have a hard time interacting with humanoid robots. To combat this, scientists at United Arab Emirates University are giving their Ibn Sina Robot a Facebook page, which will hopefully enable sustainable friendships between man and machine. Finally!

Lingo Wireless Mouse is Really Small
from Think Laptops

There are a few mini-PC mice from Japan, but now Tokyo-based TEC says its Lingo, a mobile device, is the smallest of all [JP]. The Lingo weighs only 23g and is available in size 27.5 60 19mm, so that the claim does not sound too outrageous.The Lingo 800dpi 2.4Ghz work in an area of the use of approximately 10m (Battery life: approx 15 hours). It goes on sale in Japan next month in black and white.

Japanese Electronics: Window-Shopping in Tokyo
from GearLog

PCMag's erstwhile editor-in-chief Michael Miller is currently in the middle of a whirlwind Asian journey. While in Tokyo, he took some time out to do some tech window-shopping--and sent us photos of some of his discoveries.

Writes Michael:

One thing I've always liked about visiting Japan is looking at different kinds of electronics. There are neighborhoods devoted to the latest gadgets. The yen is so high so that bargains are hard to find, but you'll certainly see things you would be unlikely to see in the U.S.

For example, the portable TVs in the photo above. "One thing you see around Japan are portable televisions capable of receiving digital broadcasts even in places like subways."

Netbooks: The Japanese market has always liked lightweight notebooks, but what was new to me was the sheer number of Atom-based machines, typically offered with subsidies from wireless carriers.

Mebius: Sharp doesn't sell notebooks in the U.S., but it does in Japan, where it sells machines with LCD-based touchpads.

Wimax: While I was in Japan, Intel announced a Wimax deal with a local carrier.

Phones: Phones in Japan seem to come in lots more colors than they do in the U.S. And while lots of stores are selling smart phones like the iPhone and BlackBerry, what I saw most people using were fairly large--and very colorful--flip phones.

Dictionaries: Japanese electronics stores always have a lot of translating pocket dictionaries.

Mice: Mice in Japan and in the U.S. come in all shapes and sizes. But in the U.S., you'd be hard pressed to find a store with such a display.

USB Software: With the proliferation of machines that don't come with optical drives, I saw a lot more software loaded on Flash drives.

Sushi USB drives: I've seen sushi Flash drives before, but these are much more elaborate. Not so tasty, but probably filling.

Buzz up!

Verbatim Launches Color Nano Wireless Notebook Mouse for PC and Mac Users
from Verbatim

Verbatim® Americas, LLC an industry leader in the data storage industry for 40 years, announced today its new Color Nano Wireless Notebook Mouse for Windows® and Mac® users. The sleek-looking mouse combines the reliability and performance of 2.4GHz technology in a small form factor nano receiver with a splash of color for a fully enhanced computing experience. Available in red, green, purple, yellow, pink, blue and graphite, users can express their own unique color preferences to match their laptop or computer bag.

The uniquely designed nano receiver is small enough to leave connected to a laptop, making it ideal for anyone who is tired of packing up their mouse receiver every time they’re on the go. With 2.4 GHz wireless performance, users won’t experience the frustration of delays in cursor movements; and, there will be fewer cords to pack when they take their notebook on the road.

Nano mouse users will also find that the mouse travels well in compact spaces and fits easily in work totes, backpacks or even handbags. For added convenience, the receiver slides into its own storage area in the bottom of the mouse.

“As with the new netbooks that have emerged, our Color Nano Mice enable mobile users to meet their computing needs in a space-saving way,” explained Ron Hanafin, Verbatim Product Marketing Manager. “They have the reliability and performance of the Verbatim brand, while also giving people the flexibility to use color to personalize their computing lifestyle.”

The mouse’s clean, uncluttered design is complemented with a smooth, rubberized grip that provides comfort and control for both right- and left-hand use. A programmable roller button is also included for assigning favorite features to the roller and making them more convenient to access.

Availability, Pricing
Verbatim’s new Nano Wireless Mouse is available through Verbatim retail and distribution channels for use with Windows XP, 2000 and Vista systems as well as Mac OS 10.4.X and higher systems. Retail prices start at less than US$29.99 The package includes the mouse, nano receiver, software CD, 2 AAA batteries and a Quick Start Guide. For more information on Verbatim’s complete line of mice, visit www.verbatim.com

About Verbatim
Verbatim’s businesses in the Americas, Europe/Middle East/Africa and Asia Pacific regions are wholly owned subsidiaries of Tokyo-based Mitsubishi Kagaku Media Co., Ltd. MKM’s parent company, Mitsubishi Chemical Corporation (MCC), is Japan's largest chemical company.

Verbatim develops and markets innovative, high-quality products for storing, moving and using digital content. Known for its leadership in the optical, magnetic and flash storage and related accessories markets, the company provides reliable, unique technologies and products that are highly sought after and broadly distributed worldwide. For more information, contact Verbatim Americas, LLC, 1200 W.T. Harris Boulevard, Charlotte, NC 28262, (800) 421-4188. In Europe, Verbatim Ltd., Prestige House, 23-26 High Street, Egham, Surrey, TW20 9DU, UK, (+44) 1784 439 781. In Japan, Mitsubishi Kagaku Media Co., Ltd., 31-19, Shiba 5-Chome, Minato-ku, Tokyo 108-0014, (+81) 3-5454-3972. Or visit the web site at www.verbatim.com and select the country of your location.

105 Examples of How 8 Essential Technologies Have Evolved
from the Web Urbanist by Steve

Oh, how we love our hi-tech gizmos and gadgets! Today’s technological wonders didn’t just land on store shelves suddenly, however, it took plenty of engineering smarts plus tons of trial and error to get there. These 105 examples of essential technologies travel the long and winding road from radical concept to retail conquest.

Evolution of 10 Essential Gadgets & Technologies
More power in a smaller package - that’s the typical trend when it comes to tech. From cell phones and computers to TVs and music players, our fave tech toys just keep getting littler and better. Remember how it all began? As exciting as these new products were in their time, it’s good to know that time itself is a one-way street. Click Here for more examples of Essential Gadgets & Technologies and how they’ve evolved.

Evolution of the Mouse: From Classic to Cutting-Edge
Where would we be without the trusty computer mouse? Believe it or not, computers (such as they were) functioned quite well for decades without them. We’ve come a long way since 1964 and so has the humble computer mouse. Though the popularity of laptop, notebook and now netbook computers is making the mouse less essential, designers have some great concepts in mind that’ll keep us a’clickin’ and a’scrollin’ for decades to come. Click Here for more Classic to Cutting-Edge Computer Mice

10 of the Wackiest & Coolest USB Gadgets
What is is about USB that brings out the best, worst and wackiest in hardware designers? It seems that everything but the kitchen sink can be plugged into a USB port - and there’s probably someone working on that right now as we already have USB refrigerators and hotplates. USB gadgets keep us warm, keep us cool, but most of al keep us amused. Click Here for more Wacky & Cool USB Gadgets

It’s Terminal: A Dozen Scenes of Early Office Computing
The first computers took up entire rooms and sported scary-sounding names like Eniac and Univac… both of which rhyme with maniac. It’s hard to imagine now but computers once hunkered down in chilly, climate-controlled rooms, incrementally reading data off of slowly spinning reels of magnetic tape while dozens of feeble humans punched the blocky keys of dumb terminals. Almost like The Matrix, though with less special effects. Click Here for more Scenes of Early Office Computing

Start to Over: History of 10 Game Systems
Video and computer games have evolved so fast, many current gamers can recall playing Pong, arcade games, Intellivision and the NES. Games and game makers have come and gone over the past few decades; some left their marks and others were gone so fast we hardly knew it. The biggest difference between then and now is, when it’s Game Over, you could lose much more than just a quarter! Click Here for more History on 10 Essential Game Systems

From Boob Tube to YouTube
Those were the days… more than All In The Family’s theme song, that old cliche describes a distant, black & white time when the whole family settled around a tiny, flickering screen to watch bottle humor (Dean Martin) and canned laughter. Society changed and so did its tube-watching habits - as did those tiny TV screens… now we take them with us or paste them on our computer desktops. Click Here for more History of the TV from Boob Tube to YouTube

History of Stereos, Speakers and Home Audio
Home audio used to mean glowing vacuum tubes, gorgeous wood cabinetry and a stack of nickels on the tonearm to keep the needle firmly in the groove. Times have changed - those nickels aren’t worth as much! Most of us also don’t have needles, grooves, tonearms or tubes to kick around anymore… we use them to create Steampunk art. Click Here for more Stereo, Speaker and Home Audio History.

15 Cool Space Projects for Today and Tomorrow
Nothing says technology like space exploration, and these days everyone wants their piece of the pie in the sky. The sixties space race aside, exploring the high frontier is still pretty much in its infancy - though you may be surprised to learn just who’s looking up when it comes to looking ahead. Click Here for more Cool Space Projects for Today and Tomorrow.

Mouse Pad
from NYU Ed

Mouse Pad is a floor mat that functions as a computer mouse and allows the user to operate the device with their feet instead of their hands, thus easing the stress of carpal tunnel syndrome.

We spend much of our time in front a computer using only our hands to operate the mouse and keyboard that control the device. This places a lot of stress on our wrists which can lead to health problems such as carpal tunnel syndrome.

For this project in our Introduction to Physical Computing class, we sought to create an interface that would allow people to interact with their computers with their feet as well as their hands. Accordingly, we hacked an old PC mouse and transplanted its functions onto a footpad, which we playfully formed in the shape of a mouse head.

The mouse "face" was divided into four quadrants onto which we mapped four Force Sensing Resistors (FSRs) that controlled two DC motors connected to the encoder wheels of the mouse that determine the positions of the X- and Y-axes of the cursor on the screen. This allowed the user to move the cursor up or down, and left or right by pressing the correct place on the pad.

Two other FSRs were placed in the left and right "ears" of the mouse head to operate relays that signaled the hacked mouse to perform a left and right click when the corresponding ear was stepped on. Overall this project allows the user to easily navigate the computer with their feet, and engages them in a different and interesting way while relieving some of the stress on their hands and wrists while using the computer.

Open Text s Tom Jenkins delivers the keynote address at last night s Business Excellence Awards gala at the Arden Park Hotel.
SCOTT WISHART/The Beacon Herald.

Stratford at epicentre
Posted By LAURA CUDWORTH, Staff Reporter
The Stratford Beacon Herald

E-mail is on the verge of becoming passe. Wiki's, blogs, podcasts and Twitter are where the future is headed.

Soon your computer won't have a keyboard and video will replace type. Tom Jenkins of Open Text gave business leaders a glimpse into the future at the Business Excellence Awards last night.

The Stratford Institute will be on the cutting edge of all of it, he said.

"Stratford is going to deal with the issues of the next generation."

Software company Open Text is a billion-dollar company with 4,000 employees and is closely connected with the University of Waterloo and with the Stratford Institute.

The Internet is changing. Sites like YouTube and Facebook are where it's headed as three dimensional images take over from text-based search engines.

He told business leaders they will soon be under pressure to deal as businesses with social networking sites.

"You're going to be running your own YouTube in your business ... Stratford is going to help the world figure out how to do that," he said.

Though Shakespeare could never have fathomed the digital age, the Stratford Shakespeare Festival will also be an important partner. Experts in storytelling, light and sound among other creative pursuits will be a great commodity in a world of video rather than text, he noted.

In about six months, a no-click computer mouse will tell the computer to build information about your interests based on what you hover the mouse over on a web page.

"This is part of what Stratford gets to participate in. Anyone who creates content is going to be king in this brave new world," he said.

It's the beginning of the end of television as we know it. The BBC is now delivering information to young peoples' cell phones, he noted.

The Stratford Institute will focus on computer science, creativity and marketing.

"The kids who come out of it will rule the global market."

There will be 2,000 students and 200 faculty.

Graduates will have no difficulty finding jobs. There are 250 Open Text jobs in Waterloo alone waiting to be filled.

"There are employers all over the world dying to hire these students."

Mr. Jenkins noted there are 450 companies around Waterloo because of the university there but it took about 30 years to build that relationship. The Stratford Institute will also attract cutting edge companies but more quickly because the precedent has already been set, he suggested.


Now, a mouse for the phisically disabled
from Times of India

PUNE: Students of the D Y Patil Institute of Engineering and Technology (DYPIET) in Pimpri have developed an apparatus that enables a physically disabled person to operate a computer.

The equipment was developed under a project titled Development of realtime process control system using head-operated mouse for physically disabled persons'. The device enables a person with no hands to operate a computer mouse with the help of his tongue.

"The project bagged the first prize at the national-level working model contest IET-Karmaveer Expo-09' organised by the department of electrical engineering in association with IET (UK) on March 6 and 7. The prize consist of a trophy and Rs 50,000," said Arun Sonar, assistant professor, instrumentation department at the DYPIET.

"If a person loses their arms in a mishap, then this apparatus will enable them to operate the computer and help him earn a living," he added.

"We first tried to use tactile sensors to develop a system for the handicapped people, but this turned out to be too costly. If we had used speech recognition system then there could have been problems due to differences in accent and tone. So we decided to develop this system, which detects the movement of tongue to control the mouse. A person can also type using Microsoft Word as there is a software available for it," Sonar said.

Elaborating on the device, one of the team members Amey Dhavalikar said, there are two switches on both sides of the mouth to detect the movement of tongue and operate the mouse. "The cost of the device is Rs 500. We can attach this device to any computer that has Plug-n-Play facility," he explained.

Students have been working on the project for two years and received a grant of Rs 3 lakh from the University of Pune.

Sonar and his six-member student team comprising final year students Amey Dhavalikar, Sourav Ghube and Chaitanya Pandit and second year students Sujay Kadam, Pandurang Londhe and Chintan Joshi worked on the project.


How to Clean Your Computer Mouse
from Click For How To

It’s not about the mouse of Tom & Jerry, but the mouse you use while working in your computer. The first one need not be taken care of; rather we all want get rid off that mouse.

However, the computer mouse is a very necessary object. Jokes apart, the computer mouse should be cleaned at regular intervals for better usage.

If the mouse gets dirty from inside, it won’t work properly and will make your work delayed and disturbed. The process of cleaning your computer mouse is very easy and anybody can do this at home. Here are some basic tips on how to clean your computer mouse. Check out the guidelines and maintain your mouse properly so that it lasts longer.

1. If it is a ball mouse, the ball gets dirty very fast. You have to clean the ball inside the mouse at least once in a week. Fist you have to bring out the ball from the mouse by rotating the ball cap at the bottom of the mouse in a clockwise way.

2. Now you will clearly see the dusts over the ball’s skin. Take a piece of dry cotton cloth and rub the ball to clean it.

3. You also have to clean the place where the ball remains. After cleaning it, put the ball in the proper place and then put the ball cap turning it in anticlockwise way. The ball will be locked again.

4. If your mouse is an optical one, there would be no ball and your job will become much easier. You just have to turn around the mouse and use a cotton cloth to clean the dust from its bottom. If the bottom of the mouse gets catches dust on its skin, the mouse doesn’t move properly making you unable to work. So, whenever you see the mouse is moving slowly, you must clean it immediately.


Interesting Computer Facts
from Time Pass Guru

1. 80% of all pictures on the internet are of naked women

2. Another name for a Microsoft Windows tutorial is 'Crash Course'!

3. Bill Gates' house was designed using a Macintosh computer.

4. By the year 2012 there will be approximately 17 billion devices connected to the Internet.

5. Domain names are being registered at a rate of more than one million names every month.

6. E-mail has been around longer than the World Wide Web.

7. For every 'normal' webpage, there are five porn pages.

8. In the 1980s, an IBM computer wasn't considered 100 percent compatible unless it could run Microsoft Flight Simulator*.

9. MySpace reports over 110 million registered users. Were it a country, it would be the tenth largest, just behind Mexico.

10. One of every 8 married couples in the US last year met online.

11. The average 21 year old has spent 5,000 hours playing video games, has exchanged 250,000 e-mails, instant and text messages and has spent 10,000 hours on the mobile phone.

12. The average computer user blinks 7 times a minute, less than half the normal rate of 20.

13. The first banner advertising was used in 1994.

14. The first computer mouse was invented by Doug Engelbart in around 1964 and was made of wood.

15. The first domain name ever registered was Symbolics.com.

0 16. The world's first computer, called the Z1, was invented by Konrad Zuse in 1936. His next invention, the Z2 was finished in 1939 and was the first fully functioning electro-mechanical computer.

17. There are approximately 1,319,872,109 people on the Internet.

18. There are approximately 1.06 billion instant messaging accounts worldwide.

19. While it took the radio 38 years, and the television a short 13 years, it took the World Wide Web only 4 years to reach 50 million users.

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Wednesday, June 10, 2009

A Common Thread - USB Hand Warmers, Arthritis, Carpal Tunnel, Joint Pain, Farming, Computer Mouse & Warm Mouse

A Common Thread - USB Hand Warmers, Arthritis, Carpal Tunnel, Joint Pain, Farming, Computer Mouse & Warm Mouse

USB Hand Warmers are NOT just a winter toy! These items provide infrared heat therapy for aching over worked computer hands!

What do all these things have in common? USB Hand Warmers, Arthritis, Carpal Tunnel, Joint Pain, Farming & the Computer Mouse are all related to one another in some way or another. USB Hand Warmers, i.e., the Warm Computer Mouse and Heated Mouse Pad provide relief to people who suffer with hand injuries due to Arthritis, Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and Joint Pain. Some of the hand pain may be related to using a computer mouse that is not ergonomic in design or shape. Repetitive Strain Injury (RSI) is directly related to the constant mouse clicking and keyboard pounding in everyday computer tasks. And, it's our responsiblity to compute responsibly to help pervent the onset of Cumulative Trauma Disorders like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome and annoying joint pain.

Deep healing infrared heat helps relieve tension and stress to the mouse hand, wrists and fingers. USB Hand Warmers truly help relieve pain assoicated with using the computer mouse and computer keyboard. Studies show about 20 minutes of infrefrad heat therapy daily produces positive results, improves blood circulation to the affected areas, and increases the amount of time a person can spend using the computer.

Taking a proactive approach to computer use is wise these days due to all the computer-related hand injuries. Use ergonomics by selecting healthy computer peripherals and USB heated devices. Therapeutic infrared heat is not just a winter luxury. The value added to daily infrared heat therapy helps replieve stress. Infrared heat relaxes hand muscles and loosend tight joints.
If you are an avid computer user, infrared heated computer devices will help prevent hand pain. If you suffer with cold hands, arthritis hand pain, carpal tunnel syndrome or joint pain try using infrared heated computer accessories by ValueRays. The products are available online at select merchants. The ValueRays merchants are listed on the right sidebar of the blog. ValueRays USB Hand Warmers range in price from $19.95 to $29.95 with free shipping and no sales tax. Plus, use coupon code BIZCARD to receive an extra 5% Off!

Here's more information about USB Hand Warmers, Arthritis, Carpal Tunnel, Joint Pain & Computer Mouse, Warm Mouse..... And, catch the story about Virtual Farming.... it too uses a computer mouse!


by Emily Price
Those of you in cooler climates may get a kick out of these USB hand warming gloves. The gloves look like your typical gloves, but plug into your USB port to warm your hands in minutes. The gloves use the power from the USB on your computer to produce heat. When you want to use them you simply put them on your hands, plug them into your computer, and prepare to get warm.

When I first saw these I thought it was pretty neat invention. The USB port on your computer can more definitely be used as a power source, so a hand warmer is a pretty fantastic idea.

The more I think about it however, the more slightly peculiar it is. In what situation would it be so cold you would need a hand warmer, but you would also want to use your computer? My office gets pretty cold at times, but never so cold that I feel like a hand warming device would be necessary. Having a device that plugs only into your computers USB port also limits you to using it, only when you are using your computer.

A USB hand warmer lends itself to the invention of tons of other random USB powered devices. I actually think a USB powered fan would be a fabulous idea. I've gone outside on many a hot day with my laptop to do some writing, and would have loved the opportunity to cool off, a little bit at least, with a USB powered fan. I can picture myself on hot afternoons at the park!

What could be next? A USB powered food warmer? Cook your lunch with your laptop. How many of you would use USB powered hand warmers? Where would you use them/ What other USB powered devices can you think of?

Photo Courtesy of About.com
By Kathryn Merrow

Have you had pain on the outside (baby finger side or ulnar side) of your hand and wondered whether it was Carpal Tunnel Syndrome?

I was contacted by a massage therapist who was having pain on the ulnar side of her hand. She wondered whether it was Carpal Tunnel Syndrome. She contacted me because she was afraid her massage career was going to be over. She was very frustrated. She couldn't make her hand pain go away and stay away.

Here's a little background about your body:
Trigger points are areas in muscles (or other soft tissues) that trigger (cause or refer) pain or symptoms elsewhere. When trigger points are pressed into, the symptom or pain will appear where the area of complaint is. Trigger points cause symptoms. (But what causes trigger points? That's another article.)

A Syndrome, like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, is a collection of symptoms. Symptoms are pain, numbness, tingling, etc.

I wrote to the massage therapist and explained that pain in the ulnar area of the hand is caused by the following muscles: serratus posterior superior (in the upper back), latissimus dorsi (on the outer side of the upper back), pec major and pec minor (the pectorals are the chest muscles and attach to the upper arm).

Since she uses her arms and hands extensively as a massage therapist, I know that her chest and arm muscles are probably "tight" and need to be released, or relaxed. The muscles in her chest and the front of her arms also need to be stretched in the opposite direction of their usual movement. Another area that often gets tight when doing massage are the "lats"--the latissimus dorsi--below the armpit.

Here is what the massage therapist wrote back to me:
"Wow, thanks a lot. I have tried to find a few spots on myself under the armpit and the pain shot to my scapula, deltoids, pecs, biceps, triceps and wrist. It's really amazing! So, if you were me would you just make sure to get worked on weekly? Thanks so much. You really do know a lot! You're a big help. I will tell all of my massage friends about you!"

When I wrote back, I reminded her that prevention is very important, too, so she can continue to do the work she loves. It's important that she develop a strong back as well as stretch the muscles which get tight while working. Stretching between every client will be a big help. So will figuring out which moves she makes cause her muscles to get tight so she can avoid those moves.
Everything happens for a reason, and when you understand the reason(s) for the pain or other symptoms in your hand, wrist and arm, you can get rid of your carpal tunnel syndrome.

And now, I'd like to invite you to discover natural ways to heal your carpal tunnel pain. Join me, Kathryn Merrow, The Pain Relief Coach, at http://www.carpaltunnelpainrelief.com/
While you're there, you can instantly download your copy of my special report, "What 9 Out Of 10 Doctors Won't Tell You About Carpal Tunnel Syndrome."

Photo Courtesy of Grea

Photo Courtesy of HoosieRagToday
Virtual Farming, A New Tool To Teach Consumers
By Gary Truitt

Imagine planting and harvesting your crops with the click of a computer mouse. Imagine talking with your neighbors instantly on-line. Imagine a marketplace that always buys your crops for more than it cost to produce them. No, it is not a dream or some future utopia; it is the world of virtual farming, one of the newest applications in the world of social media. If you are not involved with Facebook, then you have no idea what I am talking about and will be completely lost for the rest of this column. Your time would be better spent on the news page of thtis web site or looking through the classifieds that deal with the real world of agricultural production. If, on the other hand, you have been sucked into the new world of social media, then you are part of a phenomenon that can help teach consumers about farming in a whole new way.

Facebook, like most things connected to the internet, started out as a simple way to network with friends. Now there are all kinds of applications that range from the silly to the sublime. There are fan pages, quizzes, and a bewildering number of games. One of these games, which is quickly becoming very popular, is Farm Town. As the name implies this is a farming game that also incorporates the community aspects of a rural community.

With this game, you can plant a field, harvest that crop, sell or store that crop, buy animals, and purchase fences, buildings and trees. You can earn money by working on other people’s farms, communicate with your neighbors, and more. It is all very simple and all very safe. There are no diseases, no deaths, no market crashes, no hail storms or droughts, and no bank foreclosures. Yet the game is engaging and, if you are not careful, rather addictive. Like farming, it can get into your blood.

As research for this column I asked members of my family to start playing the game. This has led to some very strange changes at our house. Dinner table conversations gravitate to who is planting what and when certain crops will be ready for harvest. I have heard phrases like “I will get to my homework in a minute after I plant my corn,” or “Dinner will be ready after I harvest my strawberries.” This game has sound effects, so the house is filled with the sound of clucking chickens and grunting pigs, a fact that is causing our dogs no end of confusion.

In addition to farming, the game incorporates the social aspect of a rural community. You have to choose people to be your neighbors. These are people with whom you communicate, to whom you give gifts, and on whose farms you can work. While visiting the marketplace, you can meet and talk with people from all over the world who are also playing this game. To my surprise, a number of noted agricultural leaders are playing this game and are part of the social network of Farm Town.

Besides being a fun game that will build web traffic for its creators, Farm Town has the ability to introduce people to some basic agricultural concepts in a fun and engaging way. Playing the game, you learn that crop production has seasons and cycles. You learn that someone has to plant and harvest the crop. You see how selling the crop generates revenue, and that planting the next crop requires the purchasing of seed. You learn that if you don’t fence your livestock they wander all over and sometimes get lost.

These are concepts that, if they are grasped by consumers, will begin to give them an understanding and appreciation of modern agriculture. More importantly, it does this in a way that is not threatening, preachy, or argumentative. It is fun, and works for adults and young people. The program has some faults including that is it is not very realistic, not scientific, and that the animals are far too cute and stereotypical. You can also not plant soybeans. I think this is a major oversight and needs to be corrected immediately.

There are different levels of the game that you progress through as you gain more experience. With each new level, you can plant new crops and purchase new kinds of livestock. I would like to see the game developers add some new features to the higher levels. Things like confined animal feeding, biotechnology, and conservation tillage. These are simple concepts that could be easily added to the game and would enhance the players’ understanding of agricultural issues that are very much in the news today.

These applications as part of the social media represent a new and very effective way of impacting consumers. Agriculture needs to embrace this concept and foster development of more of these kinds of things to reach and influence people and raise the general awareness of agriculture.
from Severe Musle Joint Pain Relief
Joint pain cannot be pinned on only one or two premises since medical discussions on the subject matter presented quite a long list of causes. Hence, a reader will come to realize that joint pain is really unavoidable.

Too much body weight for one is a common cause why some individuals suffer joint pain. Skeletal muscles and joints located around the hip, thigh, knees, legs, ankles and feet area bear the body weight. As a result, the heavier the physique the more battered they become. Nonetheless, individuals who do not exceed the weight limit but who are constantly on their feet also experience joint pain. Muscles, tendons, nerves and joints are often pressed down beyond the normal frequency or burdened by way past the normal weight. The cartilage which provides a protective pad between the ball and socket joints was designed to provide ample protection for non-abusive use. Thus excess weight and over exertion reduce these tendons to mere fibers causing joint friction. The unpadded rubbing of ball and socket joints against each other becomes the joint pain that we feel.

Arthritis in its diverse forms is often branded as the root cause of joint disorders. Rheumatoid, juvenile rheumatoid, osteo, Reiter's syndrome and psoriatic arthritis are only a few of the arthritic disorders leading to harsh joint pains. Based on these premises, it was ascertained that joint pain is not limited to elderly individuals but may also affect children as young as three years old. Although aches on joints around the wrists, knees, elbows, fingers, toes, ankle and neck are described as excruciating, they can be relieved by simple medications such as aspirin, ibuprofen, naproxen and saliscylate. Quite interestingly though the arthritic disorders by itself has no known cure yet.

Other causes of joint pain can also be attributed to different bodily injuries or physical make-up. Individuals who usually engage in various forms of sports activities may find themselves injured, strained or sprained. Even previous injuries may result to recurring joint pains. Lifestyles involving the use of ill-fitting or high-heeled shoes also induce swelling in muscles and tendons that causes aching joints. Improper posture and unnatural gaits among bow-legged individuals are sometimes diagnosed by physicians as the culprit in joint throbbing.

By and large, although causes of joint pain may abound its relief and treatment are generally attainable. Proper care, good nutrition, exercise, weight-regulation, good posture, fitting equipments, rest, lessened exertion and if necessary avoiding injury causing activities are among the corrective steps prescribed by the doctor. Even though some forms of joint pain cannot be treated entirely, there are still several different types of medication and treatment available that can work to lessen the pain.
What Causes Arthritis? Is It a Disease or Disorder? And, Natural Remedies to Help Arthritis Pain
from Antioxidant-Scleroderma Blog

Many of us are affected by arthritis, or know someone who is. Arthritis is a condition of moderate to severe pain that affects the joints, but what exactly is it that causes some people to get arthritis while others don’t?

The quick and easy answer as to what causes arthritis is that we really don’t know yet. There’s no one answer that explains every case. There’s no “arthritis disease” that you catch like a cold that causes you to develop symptoms. Arthritis is simply a joint disorder that develops with time. In fact, there are over a hundred types of arthritis and many of them are probably caused by different factors.

What we do know is that there are some risk factors that increase your chances or having a problem. While they may not be the root cause of your arthritis, they could definitely be helping to further the problem along.

One of the biggest risk factors associated with arthritis is age. You know that as you get older, there’s more wear and tear on your body. Arthritis may not be caused specifically by wear and tear on the joints, but it will definitely speed up the process or increase symptoms. That is why a large number of people over 65 have arthritis, regardless of the other factors.

Another factor that can increase your chances of developing arthritis is weight. If you are overweight, you’re going to increase the stress on your joints and will likely have more problems with arthritis. Starting a diet and exercise plan now may reduce symptoms or slow the progress of the disease.

Joint injury is often a factor in developing arthritis. Just like all the other factors, it’s not a root cause; however, you’re more likely to develop arthritis in a joint that has had a previous injury. If you do injure yourself, be sure to care for it properly so it heals quickly and doesn’t get damaged again.

Doctors aren’t really sure how big a part genetics plays into the development of arthritis, but they do know it’s related. If your parents have arthritis, it’s more likely that you will as well. Although this doesn’t mean that just because your parents had it, you will too. By reducing the likeliness from other causes, you can reduce your risk.

Many people associate arthritis with athletes and other physically active people. While it would make sense that physical work would put more stress on joints and increase the likelihood of arthritis, studies really haven’t shown this to be true. While the risk of athletes developing arthritis is higher, this is associated with their increased chance of joint injury. This means you can continue your daily exercise routine (it will probably even help), but always take precautions to avoid injury.

When most people think of arthritis, they’re often thinking of osteoarthritis. However, rheumatoid arthritis is a less common but very serious illness. While symptoms can be similar the causes are not. Rheumatoid arthritis is an autoimmune disease, which means the body is actually attacking itself and causing damage to its own joints.

While you can’t prevent arthritis or control all these factors, you can take steps to reduce them, keeping yourself pain free for longer. Here are some natural remedies to help control your arthritis pain.

Arthritis Hand Relief Bath
* 2 drops Rosemary* 2 drops Chamomile in Jojoba* 2 drops Juniper* 1ml Evening Primrose Oil
Add 4-6 drops of mixture to warm water and soak for 15 minutes.

If skin needs nourishment, mix the essential oils in 5ml Sweet Almond Oil before adding to water.

Follow the hand bath with a soothing hand massage, to nourish and protect the skin.
Circulation and Painful Joints Bath
* 2 tbsp Almond oil* 2 drops each of Lemon grass oil, Coriander oil, and Clove oil
Measure Almond oil into a small bowl, Slowly add all the oils. Mix ingredients and pour into running water.

This bath helps stimulate the Circulation and relive suffering joints and muscles

Gentle Arthritis Bath
* 15 drops Lavender* 5 drops Clary Sage* 10 drops Geranium* 3 drops Ylang Ylang.
Place oils in bath under running water.Warm is sometimes better than hot.... Rinse thoroughly when finished.

Dee Braun, a single mom of 6, is a Certified Aromatherapist and natural health practitioner. Click now to visit Health or High Water at http://www.healthorhighwater.com/ where you'll find info on ways to improve your health using nutritional supplements to help battle the ravages of time, poor nutrition, toxins & stress as well as address many common health conditions.

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Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Warm Advice for Computer Mouse & Keyboard Users! Don't Allow Your Computer to Harm You!

There's no better time than the present to take a proactive approach to using the computer in a healthy manner! Hand therapists world wide report the increase in computer related hand injuries due to mouse clicking and keyboard key pounding. It's time to take a healthy approach to the way we use the computer. Make your computer work for you, not harm you. There are USB infrared heated computer peripherals available to provide deep healing therapeutic heat to computer users while they are using the computer. It's not just for a person with cold hands anymore, the infrared heat therapy helps soothe aching muscles and relieve stress and strains. ValueRays products deliver a continuous flow of infrared heat for the mouse hand and keyboard hands. Read more about each product at these links:

Hopefully, you're not one of the statistics mentioned in the Yahoo! News article below. If so, we empathize. If not, take notice. There are more computer-related home injuries reported annually than imagined. We use the computer for just about everything these days. Watch out for falling laptops and don't trip on loose or hanging cords!

Read what Yahoo! News' Jennifer Thomas has to say about the computer injuries reported for home computer users. The statistics are enlightening!

Computers Causing Injuries in the Home
By Jennifer Thomas
HealthDay Reporter

TUESDAY, June 9 (HealthDay News) -- Computers are everywhere in the home these days -- the office, the kid's room, maybe even on the kitchen table.

And that, according to new research, has led to more people showing up in emergency rooms with computer-related injuries.

That increase has not been slight: From 1994 to 2006, injuries caused by people tripping over computer wires or getting hit by falling equipment rose from about 1,300 a year to 9,300 a year, an increase of 732 percent nationwide.

Children under the age of 5 had the highest injury rate. The leading cause of injury for small children, and for adults over 60, was tripping or falling over computer equipment.

But while most injuries were to the extremities such as the arms or legs, young children were five times more likely than other age groups to sustain a head injury.

"It's a pretty significant problem, given that computers are in most homes these days and many homes have more than one," said study author Lara McKenzie, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Nationwide Children's Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.

The study will be published in the June 9 online issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

From 1989 to 2003, the number of U.S. households with a computer increased from 15 percent to 62 percent, according to the most recent statistics available from the U.S. Census Bureau. Nearly one-third of those had at least two computers.

"There are a lot of safety recommendations for all areas of the home -- the bathroom, kitchen, bedrooms, but computers are not mentioned in the literature of the safety world," McKenzie said. "Yet kids are spending a lot of time on computers, and people are spending a lot of time on their computers or in their home offices."

McKenzie and her colleagues looked at injury data collected by the U.S. Consumer Product Safety Commission's National Electronic Injury Surveillance System. Over a 13-year period, about 78,000 people sustained computer-related injuries.

The annual rate peaked in about 2003, when about 10,000 were injured by computers. The number has since dropped off, possibly because lighter, LCD screens have become more prevalent.

For all ages, the most common acute computer-related injuries were lacerations (39 percent) and contusions and abrasions (23 percent).

Computers aren't the only dangerous items in the home. A recent study also by Nationwide Children's Hospital found about 15,000 children a year are treated in hospital emergency departments for injuries caused by furniture tipping.

And since the early 1990s, the number of children injured by falling TVs, shelves and dressers has risen 41 percent.

Recently, former heavyweight boxing champion Mike Tyson's 4-year-old daughter was accidentally strangled by a treadmill cord.

As much as possible, parents need to supervise their children, said Chrissy Cianflone, director of program operations for Safe Kids USA. Make rooms such as home offices and home gyms off limits.

"We know you can't watch your child 24 hours a day, seven days a week," Cianflone said. "But don't have them playing in the home office or the exercise equipment. Have them playing in a safe room that is baby-proofed."

Of the kids injured by computer equipment, 53 percent of those under age 5 and 41 percent of those aged 5 to 9 were hurt while playing near or climbing on computer equipment, the study showed.

To specifically minimize risk with computers, the machines should be kept on a wide, sturdy work surface that is away from walk areas, according to background information on the study. Organize and secure cords, keep the work space tidy and install safety covers on unused electrical outlets. And anchor heavy furniture or computer components to the wall.

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Monday, June 8, 2009

Warm Hued Mouser Mouse, Computer Ergonomics, Hand Injury, Carpal Tunnel, Arthritis

from Warm Mouse

We are all concerned these days about the amount of time we spend on the computer clicking the mouse and pounding the keyboard. Ergonomics are important, and the key to reducing the onset of computer related hand injuries like Carpal Tunnel Syndrome, Repetitive Strain Injury and Cumulative Trauma Disorder.

So, why all the fuss about designer mice? The computer mouse has been the focus for designers for many years. It's the one computer peripheral available for design modification. There's a mouse shaped like just about any object imaginable, plus there's a variety of multi-funtional mice - the fan mouse generates cool air, the warm mouse generates infrared heat, the message mouse generates a digital message.

The Mouser Mouse appears to be designed of wood and etched stainless steel. It has a classy looking pattern and skeletal design construction. It appears to look easy to hold with clicks made to the two etched components. Would it be comfortable? Not sure. For those who spend endless hours using the computer mouse everyday, it's questionable as to the amount of cumulative trauma our hands receive. To take a proactive approach to redcuing the onset of hand injury we can't stress enough the use of infrared heated computer products. The deep healing effect of infrared heat soothes aching muscles and relieves stress. One of the major benefits of healing infrared heat is living the day without stress and feeling relaxed. Stress and tension caused by hand pain prevents us from completing computer related tasks. Using USB heated hand warmers: warm mouse, warm mouse pad, warm keyboard pad and mouse hand warmer help create comfortable time using the computer.


Here's what others say about the Warm Hued Mouser Mouse:

Ergonomic computer mouse versus stylish mouse
from Tech Pin

It’s your choice, after all, but, as you know very well by now, ergonomics doesn’t get along very well with style. Usually, people have to satisfy themselves with only one of the aspects they are looking for. Especially because, if you think about it, a mouse is a mouse, and there’s nothing to do about making it look more artistic.

However, you probably seen already those shiny devices adorned with tons of LED lights or Swarovski crystals, that some of the customers are crazy about. They are said to be artistic, but allow me to express my contrary opinion.

Now, here we have another example of an artistic mouse, created by designer Andrey Chirkov, which has a modern touch, looking as minimalistic as possible. The Mouser, ‘cause this is how it’s called, is made from two materials, which are different as far as the qualities and the texture are concerned. There’s the warm pliable wood, on one hand, which is like a eulogium to the retro style, and there’s the cold hard metal, on the other hand, like a recognition of the modern times.

“This symbiosis of two substances – technical and biological, demonstrates the harmonic combination of precise working mechanism and natural ‘live’ coat. Exterior of the mouse corresponds to the qualities of the materials: based on hard metallic frame, a kind of skeleton, which houses electronic plate, buttons and drive of the rolling wheel. The mechanism is hidden behind the wooden details of flowing form. Visually buttons are picked out of the whole volume, seems that they are hanging in the air.”

For the moment, we’re talking about a concept, so the details about the price and availability are not known. However, it might give you a helping hand when trying to decide between an ergonomic computer mouse and a stylish one.


Mouser mouse screams geek desire in style
from GizmoWatch

A unification of constructive technology and valuable construction, this computer mouse attracts the geek considering the multifaceted, comfortable and pleasant build we have in offer in this near original instrument. Designed by Andrey Chirkov, the mouser (that how the mouse is called I suppose) is made in two materials with different qualities and texture. The pliable wood gives the mouse an artist retro look while the hard metallic frame used for the buttons gets it back to the modern manifestation. The buttons seems to be hanging in mid air, as the flowing form of the wood only helps the metal finish rest on the skillful body, while the original construction of the rolling wheel adds to the finishing details of the splendor. Not made for serial production initially, therefore we have no details on the price of the mouse.


The Mouser is sure to turn heads
from Coolest Gadgets

As common as a computer mouse is, there are few that could ever be considered artistic. Some are shiny with LED lights or small crystals, yet they have a certain mass produced look to them. This mouse designed by Andrey Chirkov is one of the few I would call artistic. Surprisingly it’s not steampunk either, that usually is the only way gadgets get a little bit of a creative twist to them. Instead this has a minimalist modern look, while still being pretty.

The down side of such a mouse is that I’d be petrified I would break it, since it does have a flimsy look. You’d almost rather put it on display than mess it up by using it on a daily basis. As of now it’s still a design though, so you won’t be able to purchase it. However, with a look like this I’m sure those with plenty of money to burn will be dying to get their hands on it. Wealthy investors means that this might actually be created for purchase. Even if that does happen though, the general public won’t likely ever see anything like this at their local store.


Here's some information about computer-related hand injury:

Carpal Tunnel Syndrome - An Overview Of The Causes And Symptoms
by Brooke Hayles

Carpal tunnel syndrome is a highly painful condition which is caused as a result of the inflexibility of a particular chief nerve in the wrist. This condition occurs when the central nerve, which extends from the forearm to the hand, is highly stressed or compressed at the wrist.


Carpal tunnel syndrome can happen during daily activities because of the excessive pressure applied on the wrist nerves while performing lifting or similar types of stress activities. This results in pain, numbness, stiffness or itching in various parts of the hand.

This syndrome is usually associated with hard physical stress and is considered a work-related hazard. The best way to avoid this problem is to reduce or avoid the activities that would put excessive pressure on the hand and fingers.


Symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome are gradual and would start with soreness, stiffness or deadness in the wrist and other parts of hand. There can be severe pain right from shoulder to finger tip.

Later when the problem is at a severe stage, one may feel itching in the hand, pain and reduced gripping capability. The person may even find it hard to shape the fist, grab or carry light objects, and may find difficulty in carrying out physical tasks involving hand operations. Unfortunately, no one is sure why this problem occurs. It is found in certain people because of an innate predilection – that is when the carpal tunnel in the body is not normal and is comparatively smaller or weak. However, the threat of carpal tunnel syndrome is very common in people who perform assemblage line jobs that involve heavy hand movement.

The bones in the human wrist are typically arranged in an uneven manner, in the form of a semi-circle. A tough ligament, known as the carpal ligament, builds a kind of roof above these bones. This forms a passage called the carpal tunnel. The median nerve, as well as the tendons that help the bending of the fingers and wrist, passes along this tunnel. The median nerve is one of two nerves that gives the hand the feeling ability. This nerve also controls some of the thumb muscles.

The carpal tunnel is perfectly and firmly positioned. If any swelling occurs inside or in nearby areas, the tunnel crushes on the medium nerve and generates the symptoms of carpal tunnel syndrome.

Tasks like typing, knitting, playing musical instruments like the piano or violin, or the continuous usage of vibrating tools involve constant wrist moments and may result in carpal tunnel syndrome.

Injured or damaged wrists are also vulnerable to develop this condition easily. Rheumatoid arthritis is yet another factor that would aggravate the problem. The disease Acromegaly is another sitaution where growth hormones are formed excessively. Under-active thyroid gland, fluid retention which is caused by kidney failure and even pregnancy can make pressure inside the carpal tunnel, causing the median nerve to be affected.

It has been found that overweight people, pregnant women, women who use contraceptive pills and those experiencing menopause are prone to carpal tunnel syndrome, even though it seems to come without any apparent reason.

Symptoms of the disease also involve aching, tingling, burning, deadness, or pain in the hand and wrist and also in those areas that are linked to the median nerve (index, thumb, middle finger, part of the ring finger). There are also chances that the pain could spread to the arm as well as the shoulder.

These symptoms of pain would normally be higher at night times and in the early morning. Also after heavy labor or work that involve strenuous wrist movements.

Carpal tunnel syndrome can affect either or both hands with varying severity. In the beginning stage, the symptoms will come and go, but ignoring them would result in chronic pain and would be more difficult to cure. If not treated early, the hand muscles will gradually become feeble and may even result in permanent loss of feeling. Simple tasks like writing would become difficult or even impossible.


Carpal tunnel syndrome has become a common problem that happens because of the acute pressure on the wrist nerves that results in aching, deadness, or tingling in various parts of the hand. This can also be a work-related hazard. These types of problems can be avoided by stopping or reducing the activity that exerts pressure on the hands, fingers, and wrist.


Throbbing Hand Pain: Can it be Caused By The Neck?
by admin in Neck pain
from Neck Pain Blog

San Francisco Chiropractor Comments:

I have been helping patients with neck, arm, and hand pain in downtown San Francisco for many years now. I can tell you this…sometimes hand pain is not what it seems. What I mean by that is…we are conditioned to think the cause ofpain (when we feel it) is at the site of the pain…and it usually is…but not necessarily when it comes to the spine.

Here's the deal…the nerves that exit from the spine control all the body parts. The nerves that exit from in-between the bones in the neck travel down the arm and into the hand. The nerves that exit fromthe low back travel down the leg. If one of these nerve roots has any pressure on it from a boneout of place (subluxation), which is very common…it can cause pain to be perceived at the target cells…the hands or the feet.

Now if you work on the computer a lotusing your hands…and all of the sudden your handsstart to throb with pain…the first thing you are going to thinkis do I have carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS) or a problem in my hand, and you might. But chances are…you are not going to think, Gee…I wonder if I have Cervical Radiculopathy(radiatingpain from nerve root compression) from the neck?…especially if there isno neck pain…and there doesn't need to be.

Seems strange…but it'strue. In fact…my 17 years treating back, neck, and wrist pain has taught me that…more often than not…hand pain is from the neck…especially with officeworkers…and they make upthe majority of our patient base in the SF FinancialDistrict.

So the moral of the story is this…If you have hand pain, and you spend a lot of time on the computer…don't just assume the problem is in the hand…becauseit might be in the neck. Find yourself agood chiropractor and get checked out.

To find out if you are a candidate for care at Executive Express Chiropractic at the SF Embarcadero Center…call 415-392-2225 or request an appointment online.



Thumb and wrist pain: The case of Ruby Q.
by Christina Abbott

Ruby Q. was a regular Neuromuscular Therapy patient in my metro-west Boston clinic for stress-related muscle pain in her neck and shoulders. Upper body tension is often the cause of pain in the forearm and hand when there is repetitive stress. (E.Pascarelli, MD) The connection between upper body tension and hand and arm pain is that when circulation is reduced by tight muscles, the arms become starved and polluted.When there is repetitive use, the working muscles don’t have the nutrients and oxygen they need to be healthy. Pain and injury result.

Ruby was extremely conscientious, spending long hours in her office and getting minimal sleep from thinking about work all the time. She was on the computer all day in a very stressful and responsible job and held a lot of that tension in her arms and hands. She had a previous injury falling onto her hand, but the pain in her wrist and thumb seemed to have come out of nowhere. At first pain would come and go, and when it occurred it was during movement. Local thumb pain was strong with shooting pains into her forearm. Her wrist became involved and was at times swollen and excruciatingly painful.

As a Neuromuscular Therapist how do I think about these injuries and how do I treat them? The posts that follow are about causes and symptoms of thumb and wrist pain, about Ruby’s treatment, and about things you can do yourself to relieve thumb and wrist pain.

Tagged as: Acute pain, Arm pain, Carpal tunnel syndrome (CTS), Hand pain, Joint pain, Neuromuscular therapy, Repetitive stress


Arthritis may be exacerbated by computer use
from Medical Condition News

According to researchers in the United States using a computer can have an impact on those suffering from arthritis. Even though computers have become increasingly common in daily life, little is known about how their use on a daily basis might affect those with arthritis; it is estimated that as many as 56% percent of the workforce use computers at work and 62% of households own one.

Arthritis is a leading cause of work disability, and those with the disease may have difficulty performing physically demanding jobs, and may opt for jobs that appear less strenuous but require intensive computer use.

Computer use is a known risk factor for pain and musculoskeletal disorders and arthritis sufferers are more at risk because of difficulties performing tasks due to pain, restricted movement, muscle weakness, or fatigue.

A new study by researchers at the University of Pittsburgh has examined this topic in people with rheumatoid arthritis (RA), osteoarthritis (OA) and fibromyalgia (FM).

The study involved 315 arthritis patients who completed a specially-designed survey that contained questions on computer use, discomfort experienced while using a chair, desk, keyboard, mouse and monitor, and problems associated with each piece of equipment.

The results showed that many people with arthritis experience both discomfort and problems that could lead to work limitations: 84% of respondents reported a problem with computer use attributed to their underlying disorder and 77% reported some discomfort related to computer use.

Of the three categories of disease, significantly more respondents with FM reported severe discomfort, more problems and greater limitations related to computer use than those with RA or OA.

Nancy A. Baker who led the study says because those with arthritis may experience pain and discomfort even under ideal circumstances, it is not surprising that the prevalence of respondents reporting discomfort with computer use is considerably higher than the general population of computer users.

The problems experienced included finding a comfortable position while using the computer and in manipulating the keyboard and mouse.

The researchers say it was expected that those with RA and OA would have more problems manipulating the keyboard and mouse than those with FM because of their restricted movements but in this study those with FM reported more problems.

The researchers suggest this may be due to a number of reasons - people with FM may have increased clumsiness due to abnormalities in sensory processing or fatigue, they have diffuse rather than localized pain that may affect manipulation, or because those with movement limitations, such as RA and OA, have found it easier to adapt their environment than those with unpredictable diffuse pain, such as FM.

The researchers say in recent years, numerous products have been designed to reduce discomfort and problems during computer use, such as adjustable chairs and monitors and adapted keyboards and mice, and providing people with arthritis with appropriate strategies and equipment to prevent computer problems, may significantly reduce work limitations and prevent those with arthritis from discontinuing computer use.

They also suggest that computer use in the home appears to have a greater potential to place people at risk for upper extremity musculoskeletal disorders, since most people do not set up their home computer environment to reduce risk factors - those with arthritis should therefore have both their work and home computer set-ups evaluated to ensure that problems are minimized.

The team point out that as the ability to use a computer is one method of preventing work limitations and eventual disability, as well as a vital tool for both work and home activities, health professionals must work with people with arthritis to identify problems experienced during computer use and implement computer workstation modifications to ensure safe, effective, and comfortable use of all computer equipment.

The study was published in the May issue of Arthritis Care & Research and was funded by the Western Pennsylvania Chapter of the Arthritis Foundation.

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Saturday, June 6, 2009

ValueRays® Warm Mouse: Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard - Father's Day Giveaway!

ValueRays® Warm Mouse: Warm Mouse, Heated Keyboard - Father's Day Giveaway!

You know when you are on the computer too much when you get carpal tunnel in your hands! That's exactly what I have...Guess I have been blogging too much, eh?Anyway, I love finding products that will help me when I type, help ease the pain if just a little, the worst for me is winter time, just an ongoing ache. Warm Mouse Heated Keyboard has the problem solved for many of us who suffer from various things. Heated Mouse Warm Keyboard would love to offer one Barefoot Mommies reader a chance to win this awesome heated mouse!

The ValueRays® Warm Mouse is an USB heated computer mouse to solve the cold mouse hand problem. The ValueRays® Warm Mouse is made using a carbon fiber to generate a continuous flow of deep healing infrared heat to the computer user’s mouse hand.

The USB heated mouse technology helps soothe aching parts of the mouse hand - joints and muscles by delivering infrared heat deep through the skin’s layers into the muscle tissue. Hand therapists report an increase in computer-related hand injuries, and these conditions are not going to fade or go away anytime soon. Taking a proactive approach and creating a healthy computer work area is important.

A deep heating infrared heated mouse helps relieve the stress and tension brought on by conditions like arthritis, Raynaud’s, diabetes, tendonitis, carpal tunnel syndrome, Buerger’s disease and many more conditions affecting blood circulation to the extremities.

If you or someone you know has cold hands when using the computer, a ValueRays® Warm Mouse is a perfect gift idea.

Contest Ends June 21, 2009

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Friday, June 5, 2009

ValueRays® Warm Mouse Pad Giveaway

The ValueRays Warm Mouse Pad is a USB Heated Computer Mouse Pad delivering infrared heat to the mouse pad surface. The surface of the heated mouse pad is a warm temperature. It's not hot and is completely safe for you, your computer and your mouse. A standard mouse pad's surface is cold and creates an uncomfortable resting area for your wrists and hands. It's constructed with a carbon heating element to create infrared heat. Infrared heat is a deep penetrating heat and is a source of healing warmth. Sore, stiff and painful joints and muscles respond positively to the use of infrared heat therapy. Infrared heat helps improve blood circulation and can help in reducing the onset of computer-related hand injuries like carpal tunnel syndrome. Continue Reading & Enter the Giveway.......

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Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Heated Computer Mouse Solves Poor Circulation Problems

This is what a computer mouse hand looks like when it's cold! The warm colors indicate heat and blood flow. The blue colors and black indicate a lack of blood flow or constricted blood vessels. Use a warm mouse and this won't happen to your mouse hand. The heated mouse is available online for under $25 shipped!

A hand with cold fingers in a thermal image. Cold fingers are a result of poor blood circulation. If you or someone you know suffers with cold hands and cold fingers when using the computer, use infrared heated computer devices. They are available through two websites: IGMproducts.com and Warm-Mouse-Heated-Keyboard.com. Prices start at under $20.

The amazing thing is this person has no clue he's an angel!

The Western Merchandiser Ad running June, July, August 2009.

The best wholesale prices for ValueRays® infrared heated computer peripherals. Quantities available for small to large businesses. Shop anytime day or night online for wholesale purchases. Great gift items for any venue. The product line includes the popular Warm Mouse, Warm Mouse Pad, Warm Keyboard Pad and Mouse Hand Warmer blanket pouch.

If you know someone who has cold hands from a medical condition, working in an air-conditioned office or from working long hours using the computer, tell them about the heated computer mouse by ValueRays®. The heated mouse is ergonomic and has an on/off button. The heated mouse pad and heated keyboard pad also provide a healing infrared heat.

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In our house, nobody knows they're dogs! It's like two children who eat treats all day and sleep! It's definitely a dog's life!

Can't pass up a post when it highlights an unique computer mouse. There certainly are an abundance of them lately. The computer mouse has evolved into a work of art. I don't think this one will find a home on many desks! I think a Monarch Moth would be much more appealing! I will stick with my Warm Computer Mouse!

Tarantula and Scorpion Computer Mouse

By Jai

The premise of a geek horror movie could be using the computer and while handling the mouse, you just realize that the mouse has mutated into a strange and vicious creature, like the black widow spider. However, such a movie may not be in the picture for sometime and though there is no such thing as geek horror movie genre, there seems to be this weird Animalia Mouse being sold by Thanko! of Japan.

The company has unveiled these weird and eerie mice that have a dead scorpion or a tarantula inside the see-through gadget. The ones that have a specific phobia for these animals certainly would not want to be touching these mice or using them on the desktop! The mice come with eye catchy red and blue lights and the real but dead tarantulas and scorpions inside.

If this is not your cup of tea, I would suggest questioning your sanity and wonder if you suffer from a psychological condition called Arachnophobia, or fear of arachnids such as scorpions and tarantulas. In fact, the psychologist may use these mice as a therapeutic device in order to induce systematic desensitization in the arachnophobic patient.

If you are sane enough, you need no psychotherapy and just have to spend $17 on one of these cool mice to scare the sh*t out of your colleagues. If you were looking for other macabre mice, try the bizarre Stone Mouse and also the wicked Bone Mouse Mod.

by Peggy Rowland

too far away?
It should be easy to reach. If not, you could experience shoulder or wrist discomfort from reaching often.

According to the CDC:
Placing the mouse, trackball, or other input device too far away, too low, or too much on one side can cause shoulder, wrist, elbow, and forearm discomfort. Placing the input device directly in your immediate reach zone offers natural comfort and maximum hand-to-eye coordination. The CDC also offers other Computer Workstation Ergonomics advice, such as making sure your work surface has a matte finish to minimize glare or reflections.

It’s far too easy to get into bad habits while seated at the computer, and a review of ergonomic tips during computer use could help you realize if you need to make adjustments to spare yourself some pain or headaches.
Is Your Computer Killing You Softly?
from All Business

Being an entrepreneur means working, if not quite 24/7, darn close most days. I spend a good part of my day (and night) on my computers, writing, researching, reading, and Tweeting. As a result, I have occasional wrist pain and an almost constant neck ache.

Brian Bentow, founder and owner of Computer Athlete Media, based in Newport Beach, Calif., and author of The Computer Athlete's Handbook: Your Guide to a Healthier, Happier Techy Lifestyle says that I -- along with millions of other Americans -- am suffering needlessly. Bentow preaches his mission "to help people live happier and healthier techy lifestyles" via his Web site Computer Athlete Central. Intrigued by his message, I contacted Bentow to talk to him about how we can all feel better and be more productive.

Rieva Lesonsky: As technology advances and gets more portable, we entrepreneurs tend to rely on it more and more. We're using computers for many more hours. How big a problem is this?

Brian Bentow: The problem -- that people are suffering from cumulative trauma disorders, serious health issues, and other side effects from their techy lifestyles -- is enormous and pervasive. According to the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA), 60 percent of people who use a computer for work experience some physical discomfort. This problem also destroys lives and careers, decreases productivity, increases workers compensation costs, and is going to get worse unless we take steps to prevent it.

Lesonsky: Any estimate on the dollar amount of health injuries directly related to computer usage?

Bentow: OSHA reports that the direct costs of repetitive strain injuries (RSI) in the U.S. are between $15 and $20 billion annually.

Lesonsky: What does it cost companies in lost productivity?

Bentow: Any way you look at it, the cost is significant to enormous. An unhappy employee who is in pain is less likely to work hard for your company. In the worst case, you can lose any one of your top employees due to a computer-related injury, on a temporary or permanent basis. It can literally push a company from viability over the edge to a black hole.

Lesonsky: What are most common computer-related injuries? How do most people get hurt?

Bentow: The most common computer-related injuries are carpal tunnel, tenosynovitis (trigger finger), wrist pain, tennis elbow, thoracic outlet syndrome (TOS), and computer back. People get these injuries by slouching, overusing their hands and fingers, stress, and by not keeping their body in neutral positions while using the computer.

Lesonsky: Brian, you say “put your body in a neutral position." Can you explain what this means?

Bentow: In general, the neutral position for a joint is the most natural position for that joint. It also requires the least amount of effort and is typically the midpoint in the range of that joint. For your wrists the neutral position is straight, in line, and roughly parallel to the floor. For your elbows and knees, it is at a 90-degree angle. When all your individual body parts (head, shoulders, knees, hands, wrists, forearms, back, hips, etc.) are in a neutral position, then you have reached the goal of having your body in a neutral position.

Lesonsky: Let's talk about a "cure." What can we do to alleviate these injuries?

Bentow: An ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. In more extreme cases, there could be permanent nerve damage. Treatment depends on the type and severity of your injury. [This can range from] rest, physical therapy, massage, and time to medical intervention.

It is much simpler and less expensive to avoid and prevent injury than it is to treat it once you, or one of your employees, are injured. One of my favorite tips is to use your larger appendages to do more of the work. For example, use a foot pedal to push "Shift" and "Control" with your feet [rather than on the keyboard] which increases blood flow and offloads some work [from your hands] to your legs. You can also push "Shift" and "Control" with your middle and index fingers instead of using your pinky. Also, make sure you buy the right equipment and learn to use it properly.

Lesonsky: What can I do to help my employees in their workspace or cubicles?

Bentow: There is a lot you can do to help your employees compute in comfort. For example, you can provide adjustable height desks, monitor stands, adjustable keyboard trays, adjustable split keyboards, and a vertical computer mouse. All of this can be done on a reasonable budget. You can also provide ergonomic training seminars, ergonomist evaluations, and software to monitor how users spend their time on their computers.

Lesonsky: Chairs are so crucial to ergonomic comfort. What do you recommend?

Bentow: You need a comfortable chair with lumbar support that you can sit in for 5+ hours at a time. Also, because armrests tend to create more problems than they solve -- they can get in the way of keeping your elbows at a neutral 90 degree angle and often support bad habits like using your mouse and keyboard on a surface that is too high -- buy a chair that allows you to remove them. I use a Raynor Executive Leather Chair with lumbar support with no armrests.

Lesonsky: What about laptops? They seem to inevitably cause pain. What's the best way to use a laptop?

Bentow: The healthiest way to use a laptop is in combination with an external mouse and keyboard so that you can keep your shoulders, wrists, arms, elbows, and neck at neutral positions while you work. The most common way to do this is to attach an adjustable keyboard and mouse tray to your desk. Then you can place your laptop on a stand or simply a stack of books to get it to the right height for your neck.

If you are on a tight budget or [traveling], put your laptop on a stack of books, place your keyboard on your lap and your mouse on top of a stack of books on a chair next to you so that it is at the right height. When I travel for business, I bring my external vertical mouse and split Kinesis Freestyle keyboard, which easily fit in my carry-on luggage.

Lesonsky: Lots of products claim they're ergonomic. How do you know they really are and it's not just marketing hype?

Bentow: For keyboards make sure they allow you to keep your wrists, elbows, and shoulders in neutral positions. [You'll want one] with low key pressure and a smooth keystroke. Adjustable split keyboards like the Kinesis Freestyle or the Goldtouch Go! help keep your body in a neutral position.

Check the specs to compare the key pressure of different keyboards. Finally, try different keyboards [to determine] whether they have a smooth stroke. Look for a mouse that fits in your hand and hopefully doesn't require you to twist your arm.

Lesonsky: What bad habits should we stop practicing?

One of the worst things to do is take anti-inflammatories or pain medication when you're in pain from using the computer. Taking medication may let you work past your normal pain threshold but that can lead to serious injury or even permanent nerve damage.

Other common bad habits to avoid: slouching, excessive switching between applications, twisting your wrists in order to press two keys at the same time like Shift A, sitting on your leg, and lying in bed with your laptop.

Lesonsky: What must we do to stay healthier and more productive?

Bentow: Let's face it -- our lives are incredibly stressful. We have monetary concerns, deadlines, relationship problems, nonstop news, and are constantly bombarded with an almost infinite amount of information. It is not uncommon for our brains to get overstimulated and our bodies to atrophy, so we must learn to eat healthfully, stay hydrated, and manage our stress.
Continue learning about how to create a healthy computer work area. If you or someone you know spends long hours using the computer, you may want to share this link with them.

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