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Electronics Recycling – What You Should Know

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Electronics are hazardous wastes, but it hard to picture that when you buy a new television, computer, or any form of electronics. These electronics become hazardous waste when they have reached the end of their useful life. This is why it is so important that electronics recycling be done. In most cities, there are recycling centers that are set up specifically to deal with these end of life electronics. They know what needs to be done when they are recycled and will dispose of them in the safest manner possible.

When an electronic product needs to be replaced, this is when electronics recycling starts. Many feel that it is okay to throw the electronics into the trash but what they do not think about is that there could harmful material in the machines, like mercury, that is not good for the environment. You should make sure that you find a proper means to dispose of your electronics. Electronics recycling, in some jurisdictions, law may mandate it.

If you have upgraded your computer system and the old system or part of it is still functioning consider donating it an organization that accepts these electronics. These organizations can include churches that help people with a low income, thrift stores, and more. You can also sell them online. The highest and most efficient way to do electronics recycling is to reuse them. If the items cannot be reused, there are other options to get rid of them.

In some countries and the United States, the community may offer electronics recycling as part of their waste disposal service. You can check with your local recycling center to find out what is offered. If they do not offer a pickup service, they may have a location where you can take electronics to be recycled. In some cities, they may have a set day that they collect electronics for recycling.

You can also use a private company for electronics recycling. Depending on the electronics value to the company, they may charge for certain component. Make sure that if you choose a private company that they will dispose of any hazardous materials in the ways that are mandated by the Environmental Protection Agency. There are some companies that may “claim” to do electronics recycling but all they do is strip down the parts that are useful and have a market value and then they will dispose of the rest of the electronic improperly. By doing this it can put harmful materials into the environment. This would be the same as someone just throwing out their electronics in the trash. All electronic recycling companies will strip out the useful parts but the legal ones will dispose of the rest correctly.

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OK, I’m not Chinese, I don’t live in China (although it’s our country’s neighbor and there’s a big Chinese community here) and I don’t speak Chinese

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OK, I’m not Chinese, I don’t live in China (although it’s our country’s neighbor and there’s a big Chinese community here) and I don’t speak Chinese. So why am I so passionate about importing wholesale electronics from China?

It’s amazing how China has its doors now opened to international enterprises and how it has now sought to expand its businesses outside. One of its companies even took over a western giant a while back. China used to be a closed off nation and a “sleeping giant” but is now wide awake and ready to take on the international business center stage to do a Beyonce Knowles number. Here are a few reasons why it’s difficult to ignore China these days:

Newspapers started carrying dedicated sections for China business because the business world is buzzing loudly about China.

Bureaucratic red tape is becoming less and less restrictive to traders, which means more freedom, more than ever, between Chinese and foreign traders

Even eBay is partnering with a Chinese company to gain more influence and connection in the Chinese market

Almost everything has some parts or is entirely “made in China” and Jacky Chan goes Hollywood!
“But I don’t speak Chinese”, you say. Well, don’t you think Chinese wholesale suppliers didn’t have that language barrier predicament in mind? Of course they did! That is why they have English speaking staff and they themselves are already able to speak the international language, which is, well – English! The problem these days, as is the case everywhere else, is not what language to use when doing business with your suppliers; it’s how you communicate with them. 

So why import from China? How do I communicate with Chinese suppliers?

China could be the next Japan. After the Second World War, Japan imitated western electronic products like televisions, portable radios, cars, etc. They were perceived as cheap until the Japanese innovated these lines of products, started giving them brand names and bested the rest of the western first world in inventing things. We now forever admire Japanese brands like Sony, Honda, Toyota, and Nintendo to name a few. And whose jaw wouldn’t drop on the smart android ASIMO? China is following the same pattern of imitating, innovating and inventing electronic products that, who knows, might become the next big household name.

China has now been tagged as the world’s factory as they manufacture almost all types of products at incredibly lower cost than anywhere else in the world. That’s because everything in China is low cost; low human resources cost, low cost of living, low cost of energy and a lower corporate tax burden. Every production outfit can employ cheap labor, but still produce superb quality products.

Importing consumer electronics from China is the way to go! Of course you can look elsewhere, but the point that I would like you to take away from here is that Chinese electronic products are manufactured and exported cheap without compromising quality.

Now, when contacting suppliers from China – go directly to suppliers, better yet, to the manufacturers and avoid middlemen as much as possible as the low production cost leaves a lot of room for them to jack the prices up. Remember, your goal in buying from China is to “buy low and sell high”. Where do you find these suppliers and manufacturers? Thanks to the Internet, the problem of locating reliable suppliers from China is now passed on to, uhm, your fingertips. Doing business can’t get any easier than doing it online. Search them out, contact them through email and I strongly suggest you phone them to “feel” the signs that you’re about to do business with the right people. I can’t emphasize more the importance of really building good relationship with these suppliers. These wholesalers are not picky as long as you build nice rapport with them and they are really into exporting their goods to western markets. I can attest to the excellent customer support that my favorite supplier provides. They are prompt, polite and very accommodating.

Take advantage of importing consumer electronic products from China now. Who knows? Your competition might already be capitalizing on it.

Visit website Wholesale Electronics – Why Chinese?

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The Mass and Charge Differences of Protons Vs Electrons

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It has been understood for a long time that an electron, in terms of mass, is about 1/1,800 that of a proton. In addition to this, it is also well understood that both the proton and the electron each have absolute, but opposite, charge values of 1. The proton having a charge value of %2B1 and the electron having a charge value of -1. What has not been understood is why is it that both objects can have precisely equal charge values yet have such a large difference in mass? It is highly unlikely that the design of the universe just so happens to have it so that this is just a nice coincidence. This can only lead me to the conclusion that there must be a mechanical explanation for this occurrence. Let us start out by defining how the inner workings of protons and electrons are designed and how they function.

Let us imagine a collection of smaller particles that are joined together in such a way so that a fixed number of them comprise a single electron. I will call these particles “Om Particles” named after the word “Om” in Hindu meaning the elementary vibration of all existence. These Om particles are connected together and arranged much like a set of baby’s plastic linking beads that can be snapped together end to end. Taking this a step further, let us take enough of these particles and put them together in a string so that they can be curved around to form a closed loop. It is this loop formation of Om particles that creates our electron. I cannot be certain exactly how many Om particles it takes to form a single electron but I will surmise that careful studies of the relative fractional values of the masses of known sub-atomic particles when compared to the mass of a single electron will lead a common denominator which should tell us the value of the mass of a single Om particle and, as a result, yield the number required to form a single electron. The reason for this is that I believe that every particle in the universe is made up of these Om particles and therefore should have masses that are some multiple of the Om particle’s mass.

One other piece of the puzzle that needs explanation here is why the electron has any charge at all. Well, the answer to this is simple and that it is a very tiny electrical generator. What is happening within this arrangement of Om particles is that they are moving very rapidly round and round, chasing one another’s tails, so to speak. It is this rotation of Om particles that causes a surrounding field of negative charge. Please note that in a later writing I will explain why it is that these Om particles are moving in this fashion but to keep the story simple here, just accept that they do and let us get on with the rest of my explanation here and discuss the mechanics of a proton.

Everyone is familiar with the common toy called a “Slinky”. Looking at the shape of a slinky, imagine taking one end of it and pulling it around so that it comes to join the other end. We now have an object that resembles what is usually referred to as a taurus. If we look closely to this taurus shaped object, and making the assumption that our slinky is a very special “super slinky” that has approximately 1,800 windings in it, we will now have a fair representation of a proton. Each winding inside a proton is actually a single electron but instead of sitting side by side, the electrons are connected in such a way that they create a spiral formation, one after another, until you have 1,800 of them just as our super slinky does in the above example.

Just like the electron, these windings are made up of Om particles that are flowing rapidly through this formation, going round and round. Eventually, after doing some 1,800 loops they return to their starting position, much like a stunt pilot who gets a bit carried away doing consecutive loop the loops in the sky to impress his audience.

If one were to examine the electrical field that is being generated by this formation, one would see that at relatively close distance, there is a charge of negative value. But, as one moves away, the charge value flip flops and becomes positive. The reason for this is that each of the individual loops within the proton are the same as an electron and are generating a negative charge field within their close proximity. This field is being generated along the axis that the individual Om particles are revolving around. The bulk of this field is contained within the body of the taurus shape itself. Stepping back it can be seen that there is a larger flow and a secondary axis of movement to consider.

This is the path takes us around and through the central mass of the taurus shape itself. This flow is revolving about the axis that the secondary charge is being generated and is the opposite in value to the charge generated by the individual windings. This axis passes through the central hole of the taurus and is of positive charge. It is the net effect of this charge living in the outer regions surrounding the proton that gives the observed positive charge that we detect when observing the proton interacting with its environment..

Now that I have defined that the proton is simply an arrangement of electrons connected together, I will explain how it is this construction that leads to opposite but equal values of charge for the proton vs. the electron. Looking at a single electron, let us say that the Om particles are moving within it at a specific steady velocity. The distance traveled by an Om particle for it to complete one lap around the electron I will call distance “x”. Now, assuming that the Om particles within the proton are moving in the same manner as those within the electron, the distance they will have to travel before they return to their starting position will be about 1,800 times “x”. Taking this a step further, if a single rotation of Om particles within an electron yields a charge of -1, we can now safely come to the conclusion that the body of Om particles within the proton, moving at a net rotational velocity 1/1,800 that of an electron but, there being 1,800 times as many of them doing so, results in a net charge of +1. Hence, our measured charges are opposite but equal in value. The other way to look at it is that the body of Om particles completes a single rotation about its axis 1,800 times faster than those within a proton. Again the same result, opposite but equal charge values.

Once that this is understood, we can move on to the next issue and that is why an electron within an atom maintains a certain distance from the proton and doesn’t collapse into it. One would logically conclude that since the proton is of positive charge and the electron is of a negative charge that the two should fall into one another in very short order. I am aware that quantum mechanics tries to explain this using what is called the uncertainty principal and that it is just a matter of probability that assigns the location of the electron around the nucleus of the atom, but I have a big problem with this. This “explanation” is no explanation at all. You might as well say that the electron is held out away from the proton by magical fairy dust as by probability. I do have to agree with Einstein fully on this one. God does not play dice with physics.

Looking at the above model of how the electron and proton are formed, another much more logical and mechanically reliable explanation surfaces. That is, since the charge close in to the proton is actually negative, the electron is kept at bay by this repulsive force. When you look at the charge fields surrounding the proton, the negative charge gradually gets weaker the further away from the surface you get and becomes replaced by a positive charge at a certain outlying distance. As one moves away even further, this outlying charge actually increases in strength until there is a maximal point where the charge is at its greatest and then will begin to wane if one moves away yet even further. It is at this point in the space around the proton that the electron is most tightly bound to. Sort of a “grange point” for the electron, if you will.

More complicated atomic structures that involve many protons, and neutrons, and electrons now become more readily understandable in how they behave. The electrons are all whirling about, avoiding one another because they have a like charge, yet are trapped within this certain area of space by the outerlying positive created by the protons packed together in the nucleus. This next begs the question as to why the nucleus is tightly bound together and not blown apart by the like charges that each of the protons posses. I will leave that to another writing, but rest assured that if you are able to accept what I have written so far, I do have a very nice and tidy explanation for this phenomenon as well as many others that seem to defy logic. That is until you look at them in a different light and are willing to throw away your fairy dust.

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Electronics and Standards

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Every few months, a new “gotta-have-it” product is released. Whether it be a phone, MP3 player, or computer, new ones are always being made. The more high-quality ones constantly bring something new to the table. A new feature, new design, or easier accessibility. The next company that does that is not “copying” off the original. Rather, they are meeting up to customer standards.

People on the Internet are always complaining about how one company “copied” off of another or how one brand “stole an idea”. The fact is, the companies HAVE to do this to keep up with consumer demand. For example, Guitar Hero was originally a game franchise that allowed players to mimic playing a guitar, just a guitar. Then Rock Band came out and introduced the drum and vocals. Guitar Hero quickly implemented these features into their newest game, Guitar Hero: World Tour. Rock Band fans weren’t all too happy that Guitar Hero “copied” the full band idea into their own game. To all the Rock Band fans agreeing with me right now, just listen to me for a second. If Guitar Hero DIDN’T add the drums and mic into their game, sales would definitely drop over time! Gamers would flock towards the game with “more features”, which would destroy any competition that Guitar Hero had before.

Another example would be the recently revealed Zune HD. The next Microsoft MP3 in line, the Zune HD boasts a host of new features. New features include 16.9 aspect ratio for widescreen video viewing, a web browser, NVIDIA Tegra chip, HD radio, and HDMI to an HDTV. It’s prime competitor, the iPod Touch, brought the Internet to MP3 players with the Safari app. So, essentially, the Zune HD copied off of the iPod Touch. No, it didn’t. The iPod Touch set a standard for MP3 players and the Zune HD followed that standard. Soon after news of the Zune HD surfaced, Apple released information about their OWN iPod Touch HD. The Zune HD fans didn’t like that too much. “Those Apple copycats!” they said to themselves. But, in their news about the Zune HD, Microsoft set their OWN standard: high-powered mobile devices. Apple’s own device can’t play high definition movies, NOR does it have a powerful computing chip like the NVIDIA Tegra chip (It is unknown at this point if the iPod Touch HD will include the Tegra chip or something similar to it; the Touch HD is also a tablet instead of a portable music player).

Still, even with people’s developing interests, there are still some things that companies will not accept as standards, or “copy”. Still on the Microsoft vs. Apple debate, Microsoft’s Zunes come with a built-in radio receiver, which Apple’s iPods do not have. The closest you can get to radio is internet radio, available through the App Store on the iPhone and iPod Touch only. On top of that, if you are using an iPod Touch, you can only access radio in areas with Wi-Fi. Microsoft’s Zune Marketplace, their answer to iTunes, also trumps Apply with their music subscription service, the Zune Pass (download as many songs as you want for $15 and choose 10 songs every month to keep forever). People have been asking Apple for a subscription for a while now, but Apple never provided.

The bottom line is the people who think of the ideas, profit off the ideas. Just think about it. Something that YOU made up isn’t copying off of anybody, and people will trust YOUR idea as the true original source. The point is, make standards more than you follow them.

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Discount Client Electronics

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Client Electronics became a huge half of our lives, regardless of what we have a tendency to might prefer to think. You don’t have to be a “boys toys” afficionado to possess the majority of your life affected in some means by the buyer electronic phenomenon. This dependency seems to increase in its intensity with each new generation due in no little part to the rapid increase in technological advances All you have to try and do is run through your normal day to work out the impact that shopper electronics has on your life. With each new advance a lot of of your day is impacted in some approach by electronics. As a result of of this the discount client electronics store whether on-line or around the corner has become invaluable.

Whats the primary thing the majority folks experience 1st once we rouse? Your electronic timer!. Then before we even get out the door theres the electrical shaver, toaster, microwave, iron coffee maker, need I’m going on? So you’ve hardly started your day and consumer electronics are already ruling it! Client electronics historically have 2 main functions. They either offer a useful function or they entertain us or each! The bulk of the electronics that give a useful operate in lifestyle are kind of like the merchandise already mentioned that you may use within the morning. Many others embody things like refrigerators, cookers and laundry machines. These appliances speed the everyday mundane chores we expertise in life.

Our discount consumer electronics additionally build life additional comfortable acquainted with climate control or air conditioning, heaters for making our baths and showers water heat or hot. You are doing not would like to possess all the most recent gizmos to be hooked in to the everyday consumer electronics.

Now for the fun part the patron electronics that entertain us! Where to start? Ipods, transportable games consoles, Xbox, Plasma TV, Satellite TV, Surround Sound, Camcorders……. the list is endless of client electronics that provide entertainment everyday. There are items like computers and cell phones that give entertainment and are useful.

One amongst the foremost in style things found at a reduction shopper electronics store these days is the LCD television. With the increasing popularity of the web, the traditional television is slowly being phased out and the new LCD televisions are hip nowadays. Since the LCD tv can be used as a pc monitor still, integration of the two technologies could be a possibility. The benefits that an LCD tv had over the older cathode ray tube (CRT for brief) primarily based projection televisions are many. The primary of those is the very fact that the electron ray that’s pumped by the CRT creates a magnetic and static electric field around the television apart from emitting rays that have been known to be tiring to the eyes.

The benefit of mounting an LCD tv and its compact build as compared to the rather bulky CRT televisions may be a huge advantage particularly where there are area constraints.

The greatest advantage however is that the reduced quantity of distortion and enhanced clarity that improved picture quality that LCD televisions bring together with them. Realize the best LCD televisions at the cheapest rates at a discount client electronics store now.

Our consumer electronics improve a lot of every year to produce functionality and client satisfaction. Additional and more every year these merchandise conjointly fuse the gap between entertainment and functionality which guarantees them a place in our shopping carts.

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The Uses of Electronics Recycling

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In this article we will try to understand the fundamentals behind electronics recycling. People like to buy different types of electronic gadgets as their source of entertainment. The rising demand of these gadgets has increased the market of electronics as well as the number of appliances rapidly.

It has also got a great environmental impact. So, in order to save the environment, the process of recycling is carried out. When the people want to discard their old equipments in order to buy new appliances, then electronics recycling comes into the picture.

Where Did It All Start?

In the past, no one had any idea of electronics recycling. So, they hardly got rid of their old electronic products. Later on it was noticed by engineers that electronic products have a range of expensive elements. Thus the idea of recycling originated in its modern form. With re-use these objects save the earth from global warming. When the product’s life cycle comes to an end, it is discarded as electronic waste which is also called e-waste. A million tons of e-waste is discarded worldwide every year.

Electronic items are usually made with elements such as lead, cadmium, brominates, fire retardants and plastics. So, the people are encouraged through different modes to recycle their electronic waste. Electronics recycling is an environmentally friendly program because the re-use of materials helps curb the pollution and lessens the need to excavation for the metals used in electronics.

What All Is Recycled?

A variety of electronic materials are recycled like televisions, cell phones, audio and video players and computer equipments such as monitor, printers, scanners, keyboards and mice. Additionally, telephones, fax machines, microwaves, small kitchen appliances, vacuums, hair styling appliances, exercise equipments, fans, electronic toys, digital cameras etc. can also be recycled. But the certain electronic devices such as televisions, computers and other large appliances will be banned soon from recycling because they contain harmful materials which can cause damage to the environment. There are several alternatives to give items for electronics recycling such as repair shops, electronics producers, local drop-off centers and retailers.

In the recycling process, the device is separated manually or mechanically into individual components and some pieces are saved which can be re-used. The rest of the components are broken down. Electronics recycling is a very complicated process as devices are made of many different materials. This process is sometimes dangerous because some devices often contain unsafe material such as mercury which needs to be handled with care.

One important point to note regarding electronics recycling is that not all of the material gets recycled. Say even if 80 percent of the material is recycled and re-used, then rest of the unusable material ends up in a landfill. This is certainly an environmental hazard but still it is better than not recycling at all.

To conclude it can be said that electronics recycling is certainly an important method to save the environment and goes a long way to ensure that our future generations are safe.

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World of Electronics

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If we go for a proper definition then ‘Electronics’ can be defined as the part of science and technology that makes utilization of the movement of electrons. Such movements are controlled through the various vacuum and media. The capability of controlling the flow of electrons is usually applied to the control of devices and handling of different information.

From the electrical science and technology Electronics show its various differences that deal with distribution, control, application and generation of the electrical power. In contrast with the electrical power, electronics started to show its distinction in the year 1906 when Lee De Forest made his invention of the triode. Using this triode one can easily make the amplification possible with a device that is absolutely non-mechanical. This field was known by the name ‘radio technology’ until the year 1950 as because the prime function was related to the theory and design of vacuum tubes, receivers and transmitters.

Most of the electronic devices that are used today utilize semiconductor components. Such utilization is meant to control the shifting of the electrons.

A Study on Electronic Devices and Components:

A component that is considered as Electronic is defined as a physical entity which is used for the purpose of affecting the electrons or its associated fields. The components are generally used with the intention of connecting it usually by soldering to a PCB. The PCB is the acronym of Printed Circuit Board and is used for carving an electronic circuit. Each circuit is constructed to carry out various functions, for example radio, oscillator, amplifier etc. Some of the most commonly used electronics components are capacitors, resistors, transistors, diodes etc.

A component can be categorized to two types. These are:

1.  Active Components
2.  Passive Components

Types of Circuits:

A circuit can be classified into two types. Such are:

•  Analog Circuit
•  Digital Circuit

Analog Circuits: The circuits or appliances that are composed of combinations of a few types of basic circuits are termed as an analog circuit. In comparison to a digital circuit these circuits use a constant range of voltage. Considering the various non-linear effects within an analog circuit such as the modulator, mixer etc. sometimes the analog circuits are also called a linear circuit. Some of the best examples of an analog circuit include a transistor amplifier, a vacuum tube, an oscillator and an operational amplifier.

Digital Circuit: One of the most physical representations of Boolean algebra, the digital circuits are the electric circuits that are based on the level of the total number of voltage. Most of these circuits use two voltage levels such as:

1.  Low (0)
2.  High (1)

Although theoretically the ‘low’ means ‘0’ but practically it keeps near the value ‘0’. In the same way high does not remains at ‘1’ when used practically.

Some of the good examples of a digital circuit include:

•  Electronics Clocks
•  Programmable Logic Controllers
•  Computers

Thus it can be concluded that if you have the most basic components of electronics like resistor, capacitor, diode, and chips then even you can be an inventor of something that could be really exceptional.

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LG Cell Phones

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LG Electronics is comprised of four main business companies such as Cellular Communications, Digital Appliance, Digital Display, and Digital Media.

LG cellular phones are opening up a more exciting and enjoyable world, a globe that begins with the “dream-come-true” technologies of LG Electronics. LG Electronics’ Cellular Communications Company pursues digital convergence and ubiquitous connectivity, offering future core digital technologies on wired and wireless handsets including LG cellular phones.

The Mobile Communications Company is supplying world-class CDMA, GSM and 3G LG cell phones to approximately 70 countries worldwide, such as the U.S., and numerous European, Asian, and Central and South American nations. This division has enabled LG cellular phones to become the leader in the worldwide CDMA mobile phone marketplace, and has allowed LG cellular phones to garner attention being a dark horse in the 3G marketplace. With Cellular Communication Company’s cutting-edge technologies, outstanding product leadership, solid partnerships with major worldwide operators, and aggressive brand marketing, LG cell phone brand is rapidly becoming a worldwide leader.

In this era of digital convergence where various digital devices such as game machines, digital cameras, MP3 players, TVs, PDAs, and GPS navigators are being combined, the Cellular Communication Company is endeavoring to bring this innovative world of cellular networks to buyers through a plethora of LG cell phones. LG Electronics was the world’s very first organization to unveil a CDMA platform-based digital LG cell phone. This digital CDMA LG cell phone handset shifted from analogue phone to futuristic multimedia handset, enabling data transmission. LG Electronics is now striving to lead the global cellular service industry with improvement of cutting-edge, trendsetting LG cell phone handsets.

Accurate assessments regarding the future potential of 3G mobile services prompted early investment and development of 3G mobile phones. Consequently, LG Electronics was well positioned to supply a large quantity of WCDMA (Wideband Code Division Multiple Access) LG cell phone handsets to European 3G mobile operators. LG Electronics was also selected as the supplier of 3G mobile handsets for Cingular, the largest cellular operator in the U.S. Consequently, LG Electronics has solidified a position as the third strongest player available in the market, and has laid the groundwork for entering the two largest 3G handset markets, Europe and North America.

The company’s success is driven by a seemingly never-ending lineup of cutting-edge wireless devices, including the signature dual internal/external LCD clamshell-style LG cellular phones. These deliver features that buyers clamor for, such as external organic electro-luminescent displays (OEL), embedded cameras, a whole plethora of included and downloadable ringers, plus an easy-to-navigate icon-driven menu system. Additional growth and awareness of LG cell phones has been achieved through the introduction of carrier and retailer assistance programs that make sure strong sell-through of its items in regional markets.

One of the goals of LGE is to further establish its position being a North American manufacturer with high value-added CDMA wireless LG cellular phones, while offering customer-driven integrated solutions for cellular communications. The organization aims in achieving this via a broader offering of cutting-edge LG cellular phones that combine mobile phone functionality with smart device capabilities.

Newest from the LG regime

LG Electronics and Cingular Wireless launched two new LG cell phone handsets, the C2000 low cost clamshell camera phone and the lightweight, excellent value C1500 clamshell phone. Both of these new GSM LG cell phones come with more information on robust cellular handset capabilities and support Cingular’s newest and greatest multimedia providers, such as Instant Messaging and Music Tones offering a complete cellular experience.

These LG cell phone handsets incorporate the latest advances in design and technologies from LG and provide robust and feature-rich LG cell phones across a spectrum of price points, so buyers usually have a option when they select an LG cellular phone.

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Electronic Signatures-Esign Origins, Understanding Laws, and the Affects

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On June 30, 2000 President Clinton signed the “Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act” (ESIGN) using his electronic signature ID, and thereby established the validity of electronic signatures for interstate and international commerce.

In the fours year prior to this Act’s passage a dozen states had passed similar laws and guidance for state specific business purposes, and in the five years since the Act’s passing every other state has passed similar laws and legislation. What does it all mean, and in the end how can it benefit businesses, individuals and the nation or world as a whole?

The best way to answer a question like this is to take a look at the origins of the law, and understand the reasoning behind its passage and the passage of the state specific laws.

The Birth of the Electronic Signature – Faxing

In the 1980’s companies and even some progressive individuals began using fax machines for high priority or time sensitive delivery of paper based documents. Today, the fax machine is a staple of the business world. Most people do not even consider the original hurdles this new medium created, nor do they consider its impact on the speed of communication and the advantages of its use. However in its infancy many of the same issues surrounding electronic communications and electronic signatures had to be resolved when utilizing the facsimile.

When the first contract was signed and faxed it created the basis for the discussion of electronic signature validity. After all it was the first time someone could sign something, place it in a machine, send it from one phone line to another and deliver a digitally reproduced signature. The path this signature took was not controllable or traceable, and in most cases it traversed miles of wire before reaching its destination, so how could it be considered a valid signature? The intentions of the signature were clear to everyone, but businesses wanted to know they could count on the validity of the signature, and if no one actually witnessed the action of one individual or of a corporation how could a business put any faith in it? This of course caused quite a stir and in rapid fashion the courts ruled this signature carried the same validity as if the parties were standing in the room together. With this, the fax became standard operating procedure world-wide.

The courts found validity in this method of signature capturing and businesses also felt secure in this method. Quite a leap of faith considering the complications caused by fax machines early on. Many people didn’t realize that the original fax paper’s ink would vanish after a period of time and you had to make another copy of the fax using a copier if you wanted to store it permanently. Also many times the quality of the image was poor or barely legible, but businesses understood the intention and would consider it signed even if there was only a partially legible signature. So in essence you had a copy of a copy of a digital image, and even with so many loopholes for alteration and criminal malfeasance the fax still worked and business flourished.

The business logic behind this thinking was easily justifiable. Before the fax machine, the contract could have been signed verbally between the sales person and the client, and then somewhere down the road a paper copy would have been signed and mailed. Many sales before the fax machine were consummated with a simple “OK let’s do it” comment over the phone. This drive to get business and make the wheels turn demonstrates the most vital point in an electronic communications based world, or for that matter in a digital world with no physical or direct contact, is most businesses can operate on trust. They provide a service to a customer and the customer trusts they will provide that service in a satisfactory manner, while the service provider trusts that the customer will pay for services rendered.

Trust is not a new thing in business; it was often indicated by a hand-shake or “You have a deal”, and that was all you needed to get a deal done. Has that changed today? I believe the answer is no, but what about the courts, and their opinion on the validity of the electronic signature? After all the courts’ goal is not just to keep the wheels turning and generate revenue, so why did they trust this type of signature and what was the legal question this signature answered? This line of thinking brings us back to Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act or as it is more commonly known, the (“ESIGN”) Act.

Electronic Signatures, the Courts and the Government

The Government Paperwork Elimination Act (“GPEA”), Uniform Electronic Transactions Act (“UETA”), Electronic Code of Federal Regulations (“e-CFR”), as well as the Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (“ESIGN”) are all attempts by Congress, federal departments and the states to define the liability and validity of an electronic signature, and help the courts answer the questions about enforceability. These efforts all center around three primary concepts authentication, integrity and non-repudiation.


Authentication is the reasonable basis on which to believe that the entity electronically signing the file is who they say they are. This can be accomplished in many ways. In the traditional world it might be done by checking a driver’s license or other form of identification, but in the electronic world this is not always an option, so other methods must be used.

The most common and popular way of accomplishing this identity check is to use an e-mail based identifier. This is a process most people have experienced at some point while using the Internet. If you signup for a web based service you generally need to create a user name and password. When you create this account many systems will send a verification e-mail to the e-mail address you entered for your record, thus proving that you own this e-mail address. You then copy and paste this verification information into the confirmation system provided by the web site and you become a verified member. That process and most processes that use your e-mail address are known as e-mail based ID systems.

Another way to verify an identity is to use a known third party validation mechanism. In other words, use something that presumably has already verified the entity in question. There are several common methods for achieving this type of authentication. You may have experienced it with a web site requiring you enter in your home zip code, an account number or in some cases a credit card number. Many web sites will have you enter your credit card information into a form, allowing them to cross reference the information you provide them with a credit card merchant. Presumably if you told the credit card company the truth about you, then it will match with the information you provided the website.

The methods available and in use for identifying and authenticating individuals are countless, and presumably the higher the value of the transaction the more authentication methods should be implemented.


Integrity simply means providing a reasonable belief that any file electronically signed on a system cannot and has not been tampered with by anyone or anything. The concept is easy to understand and the requirement for it is certainly justified. When you are dealing with paper it is easy to give everyone a copy, and any discrepancies are easily found, but with electronic records it can be difficult to manually or even visually tell if the file has been altered. To demonstrate integrity electronic signature capture services generally use an encryption algorithm to lock a file once it has been signed. Even better services will continually validate a file all the way through the signature process and then create a final version once all signatures are finalized. Most technology used today for identification purposes can be more accurate than human DNA.


Think back to the Fax machine illustration. Someone can always say, “That is not my signature” and claim that the signature was forged. After all, someone could have placed an image of a signature on to a document, and faxed it back to you. The point is, under most circumstances you can never be 100% certain the person you are doing business with is who they say they are. Even in-person transactions can be at risk. Identity theft is the fastest-growing crime and criminals are not just buying and signing things online, they are going into banks, opening credit cards and walking into retail establishments. So what can be done to help protect businesses against fraud and abuse if they use electronic signatures?

Just as a notary verifies the intent of the signatory, electronic signatures can use verification methods to insure the signatory understood the purpose and the intent of the signature process. However, the road to a successful electronic signature implementation lies in the careful understanding that the electronic signature super highway has a minimum of three lanes. Each of the signatories has a lane of relationship “traffic” between them and the electronic signature service provider. The lane dedicated to the relationship between the sender and the recipient is just as relevant and important. It is this relationship that will help to legally define the intent of the signatories in various legal matters. Therefore, combining good business practices with a solid electronic signature capturing service will make non-repudiation less of an issue.

How Electronic Signatures Can Help You

In order to fully understand how electronic signatures can help you and your business we need to take a look at why we want to use them in the first place. Electronic signatures offer a wide variety of benefits to everyone involved in a transaction. They reduce costs associated with signing files by cutting overhead. Electronic signatures allow us to cut hard costs like paper, ink, printer wear, staples, pens, shipping and handling, but they also allow us to cut soft costs like storage, copying, filing, retrieval, auditing and tracking. Overall electronic signatures can save hundreds of dollars on a single contract for small contracts and thousands or tens of thousands for large contracts.

Let’s demonstrate how the savings can be realized. A business sends out 100 proposals per year that are approximately 150 pages long. It is primarily black and white ink. The client prints the 150 page proposal on regular stock paper 1 and binds it 2. The proposal is then placed in an overnight delivery envelope and shipped next day air, with a return envelope provided, which is also next day air 3. Once the client receives the proposal, reads it and signs their acceptance, the proposal is then shipped back to the business 4 in the provided overnight envelope. Once the proposal arrives at the business, the sales team and managers need to be notified, so they can engage the client. The proposal then needs to be filed and stored in a safe place. The person working at receiving desk will make three copies of the proposal 5, and distribute them to the required personnel, and subsequently file the original proposal in a filing cabinet 6. So what are the costs?

Total Cost of Using Paper = ($112.50) x (100) = $11,250

(1) 150 + Ink + Paper + Wear and Tear on printer = $3.

(2) Binding = $1.50

(3) Outbound Overnight Shipping = $20

(4) Inbound Overnight Shipping = $20

(5) 3 x 150 + Ink + Paper + Wear and Tear on printer = $9

(6) 150 Pages Storage Using Government Estimate = $19

Labor @ 2 Hours for Total Process = $40

2 Days Opportunity Time for Best Delivery Option = $Unknown

Total Cost of a Paperless Transaction = ($10) x (100) = $1,000

Labor @ 15 Minutes for Total Process = $5

Sending File Electronically = $5

Delivery Is Immediate = No Lost Opportunity Costs


Total Savings Using Electronic Signature Service vs. Paper = $10,250 Per Year

Having a technology available to your business that will reduce overhead on a single expense by 90% is attractive for any business, especially one that will benefit other areas as well.

Give Electronic Signatures a Chance to Save Your Business Money

Businesses today should look at the logistic benefits of electronic signature technology and contemplate how they might benefit their organization. If you have a fax machine then you should certainly have an electronic signature service as well. Electronic signature services provide unparalleled speed to users. They are faster and more versatile than fax machines, less expensive than overnight shipping options and the soft and hard cost savings are extraordinary. Electronic signature services can be used on any file type, including audio, video, photos, and all text documents. Electronic signatures are also easy to store, track and audit.

In the end electronic signatures will not change your life, but they may change how you operate your business day-to-day. Just like the fax machine did, it will make you more efficient and help you get the job done faster, and that may just be the difference that separates you from the competition.

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What’s In The Future For Electronics Recycling?

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Electronics recycling in the U.S. is growing as the industry consolidates and matures. The future of electronics recycling – at least in the U.S., and perhaps globally – will be driven by electronics technology, precious metals, and industry structure, in particular. Although there are other things that can influence the industry – such as consumer electronics collections, legislation and regulations and export issues – I believe that these 3 factors will have a more profound impact on the future of electronics recycling.

The most recent data on the industry – from a survey conducted by the International Data Corporation (IDC) and sponsored by the Institute of Scrap Recycling Industries (ISRI) – found that the industry (in 2010) handled approximately 3.5 million tons of electronics with revenues of $5 billion and directly employed 30,000 people – and that it has been growing at about 20% annually for the past decade. But will this growth continue?

Electronics Technology
Personal computer equipment has dominated volumes handled by the electronics recycling industry. The IDC study reported that over 60% by weight of industry input volumes was “computer equipment” (including PCs and monitors). But recent reports by IDC and Gartner show that shipments of desktop and laptop computers have declined by more than 10% and that the shipments of smartphones and tablets now each exceed that of PCs. About 1 billion smart phones will be shipped in 2013 – and for the first time exceed the volumes of conventional cell phones. And shipments of ultra-light laptops and laptop-tablet hybrids are increasing rapidly. So, we are entering the “Post-PC Era”.

In addition, CRT TVs and monitors have been a significant portion of the input volumes (by weight) in the recycling stream – up to 75% of the “consumer electronics” stream. And the demise of the CRT means that fewer CRT TVs and monitors will be entering the recycling stream – replaced by smaller/lighter flat screens.

So, what do these technology trends mean to the electronics recycling industry? Do these advances in technology, which lead to size reduction, result in a “smaller materials footprint” and less total volume (by weight)? Since mobile devices (e.g., smart phones, tablets) already represent larger volumes than PCs – and probably turn over faster – they will probably dominate the future volumes entering the recycling stream. And they are not only much smaller, but typically cost less than PCs. And, traditional laptops are being replaced by ultra-books as well as tablets – which means that the laptop equivalent is a lot smaller and weighs less.

So, even with continually increasing quantities of electronics, the weight volume entering the recycling stream may begin decreasing. Typical desktop computer processors weigh 15-20 lbs. Traditional laptop computers weigh 5-7 lbs. But the new “ultra-books” weigh 3-4 lbs. So, if “computers” (including monitors) have comprised about 60% of the total industry input volume by weight and TVs have comprised a large portion of the volume of “consumer electronics” (about 15% of the industry input volume) – then up to 75% of the input volume may be subject to the weight reduction of new technologies – perhaps as much as a 50% reduction. And, similar technology change and size reduction is occurring in other markets – e.g., telecommunications, industrial, medical, etc.

However, the inherent value of these devices may be higher than PCs and CRTs (for resale as well as scrap – per unit weight). So, industry weight volumes may decrease, but revenues could continue to increase (with resale, materials recovery value and services). And, since mobile devices are expected to turn over more rapidly than PCs (which have typically turned over in 3-5 years), these changes in the electronics recycling stream may happen within 5 years or less.

Another factor for the industry to consider, as recently reported by E-Scrap News – “The overall portability trend in computing devices, including traditional form-factors, is characterized by integrated batteries, components and non-repairable parts. With repair and refurbishment increasingly difficult for these types of devices, e-scrap processors will face significant challenges in determining the best way to manage these devices responsibly, as they gradually compose an increasing share of the end-of-life management stream.” So, does that mean that the resale potential for these smaller devices may be less?

The electronics recycling industry has traditionally focused on PCs and consumer electronics, but what about infrastructure equipment? – such as servers/data centers/cloud computing, telecom systems, cable network systems, satellite/navigation systems, defense/military systems. These sectors generally use larger, higher value equipment and have significant (and growing?) volumes. They are not generally visible or thought of when considering the electronics recycling industry, but may be an increasingly important and larger share of the volumes that it handles. And some, if not much, of this infrastructure is due to change in technology – which will result in a large volume turnover of equipment. GreenBiz.com reports that “… as the industry overhauls and replaces… servers, storage and networking gear to accommodate massive consolidation and virtualization projects and prepare for the age of cloud computing… the build-out of cloud computing, the inventory of physical IT assets will shift from the consumer to the data center… While the number of consumer devices is increasing, they are also getting smaller in size. Meanwhile, data centers are being upgraded and expanded, potentially creating a large amount of future e-waste.”

But, outside the U.S. – and in developing countries in particular – the input volume weight to the electronics recycling stream will increase significantly – as the usage of electronic devices spreads to a broader market and an infrastructure for recycling is developed. In addition, developing countries will continue to be attractive markets for the resale of used electronics.

Precious Metals
In the IDC study, over 75% by weight of industry output volumes was found to be “commodity grade scrap”. And more than half of that was “metals”. Precious metals represent a small portion of the volume – the average concentration of precious metals in electronics scrap is measured in grams per ton. But their recovery value is a significant portion of the total value of commodity grade scrap from electronics.

Precious metals prices have increased significantly in recent years. The market prices for gold, silver, palladium and platinum have each more than doubled over the past five years. However, gold and silver have historically been very volatile since their prices are driven primarily by investors. Their prices seem to have peaked – and are now significantly below their high points last year. Whereas, platinum and palladium prices have traditionally been driven by demand (e.g., manufacturing – like electronics and automotive applications) and generally more stable.

Telecommunications equipment and cell phones generally have the highest precious metals content – up to 10 times the average of scrap electronics based on per unit weight. As technology advances, the precious metals content of electronics equipment generally decreases – due to cost reduction learning. However, the smaller, newer devices (e.g., smart phones, tablets) have higher precious metals content per unit weight than conventional electronics equipment – such as PCs. So, if the weight volume of electronics equipment handled by the electronics industry decreases, and the market prices for precious metals decreases – or at least does not increase – will the recovery value of precious metals from electronics scrap decrease? Probably the recovery value of precious metals from electronics scrap per unit weight will increase since more electronics products are getting smaller/lighter, but have a higher concentration of precious metals (e.g., cell phones) than traditional e-scrap in total. So, this aspect of the industry may actually become more cost efficient. But the total industry revenue from commodity scrap – and especially precious metals – may not continue to increase.

Industry Structure
The electronics recycling industry in the U.S. can be thought of as comprising 4 tiers of companies. From the very largest – that process well in excess of 20 up to more than 200 million lbs. per year – to medium, small and the very smallest companies – that process less than 1 million lbs. per year. The top 2 tiers (which represent about 35% of the companies) process approximately 75% of the industry volume. The number of companies in “Tier 1” has already decreased due to consolidation – and continued industry consolidation will probably drive it more towards the familiar 80/20 model. Although there are over 1000 companies operating in the electronics recycling industry in the U.S., I estimate that the “Top 50” companies process almost half of the total industry volume.

What will happen to the smaller companies? The mid-size companies will either merge, acquire, get acquired or partner to compete with the larger companies. The small and smallest companies will either find a niche or disappear. So, the total number of companies in the electronics recycling industry will probably decrease. And more of the volumes will be handled by the largest companies. As with any maturing industry, the most cost efficient and profitable companies will survive and grow.

What are the implications of these trends?
o The total weight of input volumes will probably not continue to grow (as it has at 20% annually) – and may actually decrease in the U.S.
o The electronics recycling industry will continue to consolidate – and the largest companies will handle most of the industry volumes.
o The inherent value for resale and materials recovery will probably increase per unit volume.
o Reuse and services may become a more significant part of the total industry revenue than recycling and materials recovery.

In an environment of consolidation and potentially decreasing volumes, developing additional capacity or starting a new facility for electronics recycling in the U.S. could be very risky. Acquiring the most cost efficient existing capacity available would be more prudent.

All rights reserved © 2013 John Powers

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