Archive for the ‘Other jumbles’ Category

How to Upload or Add Text to WordPress and Nicely Format your Pages


WordPress is an easy system to use to create new webpages. It does not have to be used only as a blog and, according to which template you choose, can be made to look like regular webpages.

As an administrator (these instructions are for an installed version of WordPress on a server and not the free system found at you can go to Users > Add New to add the following types of users:


An administrator can change the theme or make sitewide changes, while different users have different rights, as explained here.

In short:

Summary of Roles

    • Super Admin – Someone with access to the blog network administration features controlling the entire network (See Create a Network).
    • Administrator – Somebody who has access to all the administration features
    • Editor – Somebody who can publish and manage posts and pages as well as manage other users’ posts, etc.
    • Author – Somebody who can publish and manage their own posts
    • Contributor – Somebody who can write and manage their posts but not publish them
    • Subscriber – Somebody who can only manage their profile

Adding Text

Probably the easiest way to create a post/page in WordPress is to first write it in Word, as its formatting copies well into WordPress, but other text editors can work fine as well and you will need to experiment with what works best for you.

Otherwise you can write, format and add pictures directly into WordPress using its toolbar:


You will see this after you select Posts > Add New.

The Upload/Insert on the top left is for adding images to your article, which will be explained in greater detail later.

You can hold the mouse still over the various icons to see what they do. In the top right you will notice the Show/Hide Kitchen Sink icon. Press that to expand the toolbar to the following:


You will now notice the Paste from Word button in the middle of the bottom/second row. This could help retain more of the formatting you prepare in Word, although still a lot of formatting does not copy, such as text colouring and indentations. You will need to experiment with what works and you can always select a block of text and format in WordPress (WP) once pasted in.

The advantage of working in a text editor like Word is you can write your articles offline, and it is generally a bit faster working offline than online.

Whether you have written your article online or copied in the text from a text editor, at any time you can press the HTML tab on the top right, to the right of the Visual tab (the default setting with the toolbars shown above). Pressing the HTML tab shows the following toolbar:


It will convert your text with pictures and formatting to html format. If you know how to program in this language you can fine tweak your page, which should over-ride the template’s default settings.

If you work online it is a good idea to occasionally press the Save Draft button in the Publish box:


There is nothing more annoying than to time-out on your page, or lose your internet connection, and lose half an hour or more of writing.

When copying from Word to WP (WordPress), sometimes line break (Shift+Enter) is better than Enter to start a new line (also the same if writing online directly in WordPress). A regular Enter could create a space to the next paragraph that you don’t want, while Shift+Enter will force there to be no space (like here:).
In Word you can replace all the Enter marks in a file (or of a section of text you select separately) by Searching and Replacing (Ctrl+h)


It looks like this in the Search and Replace window:


Usually on your toolbar there is an icon that looks like a backwards P, like at the end of this sentence in the picture below:


Pressing this icon shows all characters, such as spaces and tabs. When you press Shift+Enter instead of just Enter to start a new line, it is called a “line break” and the end of the line uses a different character, like shown in the picture below:


You can create a nicely formatted file in Word according to these formatting tips.

Checking progress

Now that you have added text, you might want to see how it will look online. In the Publish box mentioned above you can right mouse click on the Preview button and then choose Open Link in New Tab (could be worded differently in different browsers). This should open up what your page will look like online in a tab to the right. In Chrome you can press ctrl+pageup or ctrl+pagedown to quickly jump to a neighbouring tab (to the right or left). In other browsers it could be ctrl+tab or ctrl+shift+tab.

When you make some changes in your editing window, press Save Draft. Once the editing page starts to reload (which means that the changes are “alive” online), jump to your preview tab and press F5 (which refreshes/updates the window in most browsers).

Now you can jump back and forth quickly between the editing and preview tabs to see how your page will appear online, as you make changes.

Using Titles

To make it visually easier and more pleasant to read, it is a good idea to use headings.

If you press on the Paragraph button on your toolbar you get something like the following choice:

WordPress-Format-text-pages__017The administrator can set the default settings for these paragraph styles, but you might be able to override these if using the HTML tab toolbar.

People do not like to read long paragraphs and endless text, so using bullets and titles is a good way to break up your article into easily consumable blocks. Treat your reader like a customer, who may get impatient and go elsewhere if reading your article is not a pleasant and worthwhile enough experience. After all, if you’re going to spend the time to write an article, might as well spend some time to make sure more people will be likely to read it.

If writing in Word, in the menu use Tools > Customize > Keyboard button to get to this window:


If you press on Format in the Categories box and then ApplyHeading1, you can put the mouse cursor into the “Press new shortcut key” to choose one that you like. Or you can use the default keys in the Current Keys box. I like to use Alt+1, 2 and 3 for headings 1, 2 and 3. It is a quick and easy way to prepare your article, as the heading styles transfer to WP correctly when copying from Word.


An interesting, useful and informative article usually has weblinks within it. Google also likes this and well-targetted outbound links (not too many on the page) will help push up your page in the rankings to draw in more readers.

If writing online in WP, select the text you want to link out from. Once you have selected some text the Insert/Edit Link button in the middle of the first/top row of your toolbar becomes pressable, and the following window pops up once you press it:


If writing your article offline in Word (weblinks copy properly into WP), to add a link first select the text you want to outlink from and then press ctrl+k (or Insert > Hyperlink from the menu). On doing so the following window will appear:


You can copy the web address in the Address field at the bottom.

The Bookmark tab is for linking within the same page, but does not transfer when copied into WP. If you want to do that you will probably have to program it in the HTML tab of your article editing window.

Once you have copied in your web address you can press Target Frame and choose New Page. When a person clicks on such a link, it will open the page in a new tab. This way they are not taken away from your page and potentially not find their way back. They can study the material you suggested in a separate tab, and then come back to your tab and resume reading your article once done.

If you instead want the link to be to an email address, just press the Email Address button along the left (the default should be Existing File or Web Page as shown above) and punch in the email address you want to the letter to be sent to.

If you want to create a default email subject (to help inform the recipient that the email is in response to your article), you can press the HTML tab in the editing window, whereby the code is as follows:

 <a href=”mailto:[email protected]?subject=email enquiry concerning my special article”>write to me</a>

The “write to me” is the text of the link and you can use whatever wording you want.

Inserting Pictures

As you can see from this page you are reading, it is much nicer to provide explanatory or appealing pictures within the text of your article. For this simply press the Upload/Insert link above left of your toolbar, which will make the following window appear:


If you want to insert a picture from the web you can press the From URL tab above, or Media Library if the administrator has created a big library of pictures on the WP account for this purpose.

Otherwise, if uploading from your computer, the best is to press the Select Files button in the centre, which will bring you to the following window (once the picture has been completely uploaded:


Here is an explanation of each field you can fill in and why you might want to fill them:

Title – good for search engine optimization. Ideally you want it to match the title of your page (explained later under Search Engine Optimization Tips) but add a different number each time.

Alternate Text – this is the text that pops up if you hold your mouse over a picture (doesn’t work in all browsers). It should be the same as the Title above and very important for SEO (search engine optimization – how to get your pages to the top of google’s and other search engines’ search results – the higher the ranking, the more people will find and read your article).

Koh Phangan

Pictures of my travels (click on pic for more), with alignment to right of text.

Caption – this will appear below the picture on your page, as an explanation of it, and should be useful for the reader. You can leave it blank if you do not want a caption or description for the reader.

Description – not sure but you can keep the same as Caption, or just ignore.

Link URL – if you want the reader to be taken to another page when they click on your picture. This can be useful for promotional purposes, such as by linking to your photographer’s profile.

Alignment – where within your text you want to place your picture and how you want it to appear. First you need to place your mouse cursor in your text before starting this entire process. If you choose Center it will end in the middle of the page. If you choose Left or Right the text will wrap around it nicely, like some of the examples on this page. When you preview what your page will look like online it will help you decide where in the article you want to put your pictures and how they should appear. This is important, because the more visually pleasant your page is to read, the more likely people will read it, which will also push your page up in the search engine rankings, as explained below.

Size – and finally you can select the size. Ideally you should resize your pictures yourself and choose Full Size. This is because, if your picture is very big, it can slow down the page’s download time and again affect whether you readers will want to stay on the page and wait. For this it would be good to read the resize digital pictures page.

Once done, press Insert into Post, Save Draft, and check out how the Preview looks. You can edit all these things any time.

Choose a Category

Before publishing your page (you can also do this later if you forgot), choose an appropriate category, assuming the administrator created some. If the website is about fish, perhaps there is a recipe section, a ‘how to fish’ section, ‘how to prepare your fish’ section/category and so on. By placing your article in the right category, it will help readers to find your page if they will be browsing for articles by category.

Make your sell

At the end of your article it is a good idea to “make your sell”, if you have any. Perhaps you just want to write an article for the benefit of the community, with absolutely no benefit to yourself. But if you would like to profit from all your

Tuktuk in Koh Phangan, Thailand

Tuktuk in Koh Phangan, Thailand

hard work, at the end of the article is the best place to link to yourself. Sure, within your article you can link to some of your  pages, such as “To check out my awesome pictures of some of the large fish I have caught, go here.” Make your article more interesting by linking to useful pages, and why not give yourself a little sell? But you want to make your biggest pitch at the end of your article. Think of the reader. They just read your article, found it interesting, and now what? Do they go back to a previous page? This is the ideal time to lead them somewhere. Sure, your WordPress can have a plugin to automatically show Related Posts at the bottom of each article, but for a real sale it is better to write a targeted note at the bottom of the article. Such as: “Click the following link if you would like to check out more of my tips on fishing.” You can have a few such recommendations where you would like to guide the reader further. Obviously it should be related to the content of the article, and if you had already linked to your “sales” page from within the article, it doesn’t matter. The important point is to offer your reader at least one interesting option where they can continue reading, once they have finished reading your article. If the reader has read to the very end of your article it means they are interested and you have already established credibility in their eyes, so it is the perfect time to guide them elsewhere.

Search Engine Optimization

You may ask, why should this concern you? Well, the higher your article ranks in the search engines, the more people will end up reading it. There are a few simple steps you can follow to help support your articles in this way.

  • Write for your readers. Make your article interesting and useful. The longer your readers stay on your page the more the search engines will see that it is interesting and push up your page in its rankings (yes, the search engines know how long readers spend on your pages). If the reader bookmarks, shares or “likes” your article, the search engines will also see this and push it up in its rankings. But don’t ramble. Be concise and captivating. People are busy these days and want the information they are seeking quickly, and delivered to them in an engaging way. You should also grab their attention in the first sentence, and then maintain their interest.
  • Once you have written an excellent article, think about your important keywords. If it is about fly fishing in shady, river areas, make sure you mention those important keywords a few times. But don’t overdo it, because the search engines don’t like “keyword stuffing” and penalize a page if it is over a certain percentage. Stuff gently, or just be aware of your keywords while writing your article and let them surface naturally.
  • Use your keywords in your title, and write your title to capture attention. Your title will appear in the search results, so the more captivating it is the more surfers will click on your link as opposed to the others. If your WP permalinks are set up properly, your title will also end up in the page’s url/address, such as “Tips to fly fishing in shady river areas” will become http://…/tips-to-fly-fishing-in-shady-river-areas/“.
  • A popular WP plugin is “All in One SEO Pack” and will appear as the picture below when in the article editing view.


Copy your title into the Title section here. The Description is what will appear under the title in the search results. Ideally you will include your important keywords here as well, but make a useful and not very long description (because there is only a certain amount of room on the search results page). Consider it as your hard sell to the surfer, to convince them to click on your link.

The keywords section should include all your important keywords, separated by a comma, but include important phrases as well, such as:

fly,fishing,fly fishing,river,shade,shady river

List your most important words first.

  • copy/write these keywords into your tags.
  • Try to break up your article into useful sections with headings (paragraph styles), and try to include your important keywords in these headings.
  • If inserting pictures make sure to use your keywords for the Alternate Text, as explained in the inserting pictures section above. Do not use exactly the same alternate text for each picture, as google could consider this spammy and penalize your page, so at least add a different number at the end.
  • Link out to useful pages from yours. Search engines don’t like dead end pages, but ones that flow elsewhere. If possible, try to link out from your important keywords, and link to pages which rank high in those keywords. It is a good idea to link to stable pages, such as wikipedia’s, as pages with dead links (if the pages you link to eventually cease to exist or change their address) are penalized somewhat by the search engines.

Formatting and Fonts of Paragraphs and Headings

If you are the administrator of your WP account you will want to select a style which is appropriate to the site’s topic. Assuming you have chosen a theme you are happy with (you can change themes, even after submitting many pages, as your posts will remain but only the presentation change) you can now tweak the theme to your flavour. Under the Appearance menu you may find Theme Options, if your theme supports that. Or you can try the Editor. But working with the online editor can be tediously slow, so if you have FTP access to your server you can download all the theme files, which are usually located in

<website>/wp-content/themes/<name of theme>/


Myra, Turkey, near where Santa Claus was born and died. More at

On your server you can zip the theme folder and download it to your computer. With Total Commander you run a search for text within multiple files. Many times the choice of default fonts and sizes for paragraphs is found in a file called style.css. Especially if your theme does not have an options page – make sure to check that first.

For choice of “web safe” fonts check here.

Do the same for headings 1, 2 and 3. Choose sizes and styles that will make reading pleasant. Make sure your font size is not too small and make everything pleasant for your readers. Run a search for “css paragraph styles” or “css font styles”, such as this page. You can indent the first line, adjust the space (margin) above and below your paragraphs and headings. Play around with this, as it will affect all your posts and pages.

Check out my web design services.

How to Acquire a Database or List of Email Addresses of Translators


If you are a new or expanding translation agency in need of acquiring more translators for your increasing workload, there are several options available to you. One is to post your projects on such portals as and For every translator who responds to your posts you can respond with an auto email in which you request that they fill in your translator application form if they are interested in receiving more translation work in the future. Keep doing this for every one of your projects and start engaging your new applicants.

There are also mailing lists where you can contact many translators directly, such as Radek Pletka’s Weekly Translation Jobs list, or Yahoo Groups such as tr_jobs or jobs-translators. In this way you can write an invitation to thousands of translators, one which will land directly in their email box, asking them to fill in your translator application form.

And lastly, you can freely signup to receive applications from translators directly through such services as the Translation Directory and our own. Or get serious and simply purchase a large translator database, complete with all their details, as many translators, especially the more busy and better quality ones, simply do not have the time or interest to fill in application forms anymore. Such databases can be imported directly into your own (although some modification may be required), giving you immediate access to the industry’s best.

You never know when you will land a major project and, if you are already bursting at the seems, better to prepare yourself ahead of time.

Why Acquire a Database or List of Email Addresses of Translators

To prepare oneself for potential expansion it is important in any industry to prepare oneself because the “opportunity cost” (the cost of lost earnings can be equated to present costs incurred) of future lost work can be much greater than the preparation costs. After 20 years of running a translation company I know that mega projects occasionally come around. To win a tender price and scheduled delivery time play major factors. To win the contract one has a temptation to overextend themselves in order to win the large, profitable contracts, and in the hustle to find the necessary resources quality can be compromised. If you do not achieve the goals you promised, not only may you lose a long term and valuable client, for good, but you scar your company’s name in their eyes and it is possible they will choose to dock you of the agreed sum paid or not even pay you at all. The translation business is a very competitive industry, as 85% of the world’s population speaks at least two languages, and many of these people would love to earn a living by these means because they can reap the benefits from such a profession: the convenience of working from the comfort of their home, not to mention the lucrative benefits. These days it is not a problem to create a website for one’s services, and at the time of writing this article a search for “translation” yielded towards a billion results (very high compared to many other searches). All these webpages, whether they were prepared by a large, established corporation or by a single freelancer, all represent competition. Sure, there are other ways to find customers than through the search engines, but competition is competition and if you want to stay ahead of that, it is better to be prepared.

Sign up free for applications from translators or purchase a database of email addresses of translators.

Approach more than 16,000 online translation companies.

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Team Building Games and Ideas


As part of my travels I once got involved in a help exchange project in a Malaysian rainforest, one of the last untouched few in South East Asia, to develop a team building program for local factory and other workers. The below notes are what I have compiled so far, as that project ended. They are a synopsis of many webpages, much of which I have saved in this team building folder for your perusal, which I have also saved as a compressed zip file (37MB) for your offline perusal. This all should give you many ideas for games and how to organize such a project yourself.

HelpX approach letter:

we operate a Rain Forest Island Resort which is 7 acres in size. Our island is in the middle of a 15000 hectors man made hydro electric dam in the state of Perak, our island is part of the 150 million years old rain forest of Malaysia.

we have chalets on our island and also has 3  houseboats parking close to our island, kayak, sailing boats ( catamaran ) and power speed boats are some of our recreational facilities.
Our business is running an eco lodge providing meals and outdoor adventures activities to our guest.
we are embarking in several conservation projects with the intention to enhance the eco system in and around our island.

Right now we are in need of people with teambuilding experience, as we would like to incorporate this service with the eco-tourism concept.
We are also seeking experienced nature guides who could help us set up such a program.

Additionally, we need volunteers with knowledge and experience in building fresh water marine reef around our island to create an environment for the native fish species to multiply. ( marine biologist ) is preferable.
we also need volunteers who is knowledgeable in organic agriculture, to carry out organic planting.
we need volunteers ( biologist )to assist in specific program like birds feeding, creating artificial nesting site for hornbill, improving our island land scape and expand our fleet of non motorise water sports like sailing and kayaking. training our foreign staff as nature guide.
The exact location of our island resort is Tasik Temengor Latitude 5,48109 Longitude 101,35849 on the google map.
The minimum duration for this volunteer programme is 2 months. please feel free to contact me if interested,

Thank you,
Steve Khong


5 Critical Issues


Social cohesiveness refers to the bonds of interpersonal attraction that link group members.

– developed with fun games

Task cohesiveness refers to the way in which skills and abilities of the group members mesh to allow optimal performance.

– To develop task cohesiveness, activities that allow the group members to assess one another’s talents, strengths and weaknesses are useful

(continue reading from “Roles and Norms” at _articles\fiveissues.pdf – below file references will always be preceded by ” c:\Users\goof\Documents\Downloads\erase\rainforest place in Malaysia\_TEAMBUILDING\”, whereby the contents of this folder have been uploaded to the above-mentioned team building folder.)


– explains rules of game well, but in a nurturing and not autocratic way. Important that everyone understands what’s at play and that it is all fun.

– ME: if get a group, try to get a report by its employer etc. to identify what weaknesses/problems it has (certain individuals or anything) in order to plan for a strategy and pick out appropriate games etc.

– for emotionally troubled or sensitive cases or bruised groups/relationships, teambuilding might be detrimental and cause people to bottle up and become defensive, cause teambuilding implies they have some problem. Better to help them or apply workshops or other means: If you focus on the problem it will become a battlefield. Instead focus on fun, new positive experiences and self-fulfilment. Encourage them to suggest their own fun things to do.

General Notes onTeamBuilding

– trail up to tower, they have five minutes to devise a strategy, then they are timed to see how long it takes until all of them are at the top of the tower. Make a spreadsheet for each team: how many people, average age, oldest person, time, number of guys&number of girls, special notes like if someone is in a wheelchair etc. Compare all this at the end against previous groups, print it out as part of package at end

– create groups of four for certain events. At the beginning ask everyone to answer the top four people they’d like to be in a group with, and the bottom four. Then shuffle it up appropriately. Tell them the story of when I was planting and got closer to people in smaller camps, and with people I wouldn’t normally hang out with. Learned to be less judgemental on first impression. Goal of weekend is for them to find some important things they didn’t know about members of this group and try to get to know them better. At end there can be a prize for the group that improved the most. Take picture of them as a group just as form them, and at the end, to show a comparison in the end video.

– team must decide on a name for themselves at some point

– think of conferences as well, since they have the projector upstairs. Perhaps can combine with my or another’s computer somehow. More pleasant environment for business people to generate creative thoughts, and can relax during the daytime with pleasant activities.

– throughout the weekend or whatever encourage people to offer their feedback to help me improve it. Bottom line is they should enjoy their time here while being challenged, develop and learn something valuable. Need to have a tightish schedule to pack in the weekend, but have enough R&R periods so people can do own shit and enjoy themselves.

– consider reading up more on the psychological aspect of all this <Jung’s Man and His Symbols>, and perhaps offer some brief seminar at the beginning so that everyone knows what is at play and the overall purpose of the exercise (to increase productivity at work and personal work enjoyment of every member of the team).

– for each group, add to Excel file their names, age, their company, and the games applied to them, if they ever decide to come back. Perhaps some brief psychological profile of each person. Mention this in the sales website as part of promotion, and to convince the employer to send them back, so that can “continue with their development”.

– will obviously need to bring with me a notepad and pen etc. to make notes for further development of each person and other ideas (also for future teams). Consider getting a nametag for each person??

To do:

– clear an area at the top of the island by the water? Need room for a lot of this stuff.

– work on making a trail etc. on another island etc.

– put a lot of this stuff on the web later, to show what we offer???

– check out games and stuff at




– think of one with roles, props and a task. People must vote to decide who takes which role/function, and then work together to accomplish the task. Think about looking up some murder mystery games for that purpose? Voting forces groups to agree on some consensus – need to come to some agreement and learn how to work together etc.

– can expand into some sort of a play, people choosing roles that help them develop their weakness, dress up for, create their own script? Or supply them with some script ideas to help save time (give them time limit to prepare..).

– look up “survival games”. Learn how to think together to decide. Some examples here: c:\Users\goof\Documents\Downloads\erase\rainforest place in Malaysia\_TEAMBUILDING\\01_activities and exercises\_Survival Scenario Exercise\

– group decision exercise where each member first decides on their own and then group comes to a consensus and then can compare the two to show everyone the power of group decisions to the extent of each person has some knowledge, so combined is stronger. Illustrate this advantage to teach them to value the group more.

Possible Debrief Questions

  • How were decisions made?
  • Who influenced the decisions and how?
  • How could better decisions have been made?
  • Did people listen to each other? if not why not?
  • What roles did group members adopt?
  • How was conflict managed?
  • What kinds of behavior helped or hindered the group?
  • How did people feel about the decisions?
  • How satisfied was each person with the decision (ask each participant to rate his / her satisfaction out of 10, then obtain a group average and compare / discuss with other groups’ satisfaction levels)
  • What have you learnt about the functioning of this group?
  • How would you do the activity differently if you were asked to do it again?
  • What situations at work/home/school do you think are like this exercise?

– look up “problem solving puzzles” for groups, where they are provided with certain props and a problem to solve. Learn to brainstorm and work together. If fail or whatever open up discussion later to analyse it all and learn from it.

– possibly a good idea to always sit down after every game and discuss how it went and brainstorm about what happened and how it could have been improved; everyone’s natural role and so on; weaknesses/strengths

– in certain games can try to set it up like a tender, meaning that the group has to guess how long it will take them (possibly other factors) and try to accomplish their estimate (to imitate bidding on a project). Can even try to think up scenarios where the different groups bid and compete against one another for a project. Afterwards discuss everything and compare bids. Perhaps think about preparing a presentation and give that in front of the other groups. Presenters can be voted in by each group. Don’t mention “price”. Group discussion later analyzing each presentation and offer. Get higher marks if their tender price is higher but presentation and arguments made are good enough to win. Groups must submit all their points in writing first and their presentation stick to that, so that other groups cannot steal their ideas.

– have one game which develops presentation skills. Perhaps like Sonya’s debating class thing. They choose their own topic and have to sell the group on it.

– see if can develop own “Zoom” game, where you hand certain pictures to people, each member (or small subgroup) holding the picture must conceal it, and then the rest have a discussion about what they saw to eventually decide what order the pictures should be in to complete the story. Try to make own and more interesting version of this and build on this concept.

– to get ideas, can ask groups to come up with their own team-building exercises. Explain that the purpose is to work on their weaknesses, develop certain skills, and build the team as a whole. Can use previous ideas they have heard of or took part in, but should try to develop it further. Will first want to discuss their weaknesses, and what they like etc. So can tailor-design the games/exercises for their group only. Afterwards present it before all the other groups and then open to discussion: criticism/suggestions etc., and if any group wants to try it. If like it make notes yourself for future teams. Can call it “milking your brain”, for fun. Groups get evaluated on: how well they identify their weaknesses; creativity in coming up with a solution; presentation of their concept. Perhaps ask them to present their concept in written form as well (so I can steal it for future teams, heh heh).

– (sub)groups should get assessed for each activity and then the relative total scores compared at the very end. At this point can open up discussion of why they won, what everyone learned, ideas for improvement etc. When forming groups should match up people to address their weaknesses, such as person A doesn’t get along with person B etc., so will need a period of research beforehand. Get input from the employer, than combine with some personality tests etc. Issue prizes at the end based on landmark accomplishments, as already mentioned somewhere on this page (most personal development; most advances in overcome relationship obstacles with certain people etc.)

– in addition to some game where each person identifies their weaknesses (could be good at the beginning for me to get an idea what I should focus on, but to introduce those weaknesses to others – help in group bonding) with suggestions how to deal with it (always get them to write up a report so that I can analyse and use it later, but also about weaknesses concerning others and how they might solve this (perhaps allow this second part to be submitted anonymously – or people can check a box if they would be happy to mention it themselves, or me). For the report about themselves, the written one can be deeper and more extensive than what they present later…

Strings, washer, ball, cup

– good game but needs space – best if groups can compete against one another at the same time

1. Form the participants into teams of 5 –7 each.
2. Give a washer with strings to a team and instruct each team member to hang onto a string.
3. Place a ball on the washer. If the ball falls off the washer they must start again.
4. The team must work together to place the ball in the cup, can, etc. on the other side of the room.
5. One or more teams can do this at the same time as a timed event or one team at a time with observers. Teams can try again if they want.
6. Observers should watch for communication, leadership, and team work skills.

Grapefruit Neck Race

Good acquaintance game where you have groups in a row who pass grapefruits down the row, racing to see which group gets it to the other end first. Needs to be equal boys/girls.

Asshole – the card game – call President and Coffee Boy

– puts different people in different roles/hierarchies of the company to get a feeling what its like. Download < instructions. The president can tell the bottom dude to bring coffee etc?

– think about having different chairs with different roles/hierarchies and play around with a bit

– for example, one role in the company might be the psychologist or something who has to reveal something embarrassing about themselves at the beginning of each hand

The Tallest Tower

standing tower they can with the supplies given.

The Tallest Tower helps illustrate the importance of collaboration and communication and often ends with an aha! moment when teams realize they are not collaborating as well as they could be.

You will need some low-cost building supplies such as: paper cups, plates, popsicle sticks or coffee stirrers, and tape, and there is some setup required before you begin.

For details on how to lead this activity with your team, see the full instructions at: The Tallest Tower Team Building Activity

Lowering the helium stick :

a group is required to use they’re index fingers to lower the stick to the ground. It is a rather tricky as the stick tends to rise rather than go down. It requires team work and strategic planning in order to achieve the goal.

I guess try to get the stick to touch the ground, along its entire length, at the same time.

Under attack by aborigines

ME: take them on a nature walk to neighbouring island. Make some sort of scenario with actors and story, and after horrifying ordeal and back at comfortable, safe surroundings, have a discussion: who instinctively acted as leader; discuss strengths and weaknesses of each person. Give them some sort of task to resolve on the adventure island. Make it fantasy and get them to live it. Perhaps dress them up in certain ways. “Warn” them about potentially scary animals on the island etc (also seriously).


Split into teams etc.

Blindfold hunt :

This can be executed as an indoor or outdoor activity. In this various object are scattered around and one participant is blindfolded and his/her partner is guide him/her to the objects, verbally.


Short, fun, physically engaging energizer and laughter-generating activity
Pick your time, place and group.  e.g., works well half-way through a backpacking trip with female adolescents
Everyone lays down so that their head rests on another person’s tummy; the group should all be interconnected by heads and tummies.
Set a mock “serious” tone
Optional: Eyes closed
The challenge is NOT to laugh
The other part of the challenge is for the first person to say out loud “Ha!”  The second person says “Ha-ha”, and so on
The groups tries to see how far the “Ha” gets along the line before someone laughs
After a few attempts, this generally descends into a crescendous wave of uncontrollable laughter

Multi-Way Tug-of-War

Refer to

– important that teams can cooperate to gang up against other teams etc. Change tact at any time. Tell them they can have secret codes for themselves and plan in advance. Best of three or whatever, and let them rest and strategise in between.

Chair Game

Active, physical engaging variation on “musical chairs”; can entertain a group for hours
Place chairs in a tight circle, with the chairs touching  each other.
Have 1 person stand in the middle – there is now a vacant chair
The person in the middle tries to sit in an empty seat
The group prevents the person by someone moving seat, creating a new vacant seat
The game moves fast — due to the strategic “bum-shuffling” by the group, the place of the empty seat is in constant movement, like a Mexican wave, changing directions, tempting, then moving fast – or instantly appearing on the other side if a bold cross is made by someone
Eventually the person in the middle makes a successful lunge for a seat (it can get very dramatic), the group member who was aiming for the seat (group consensus) now goes in the middle
And so on….

Wobbly Broomstick

Dizzy shit dude! file:///C:/Users/goof/Documents/Downloads/erase/rainforest%20place%20in%20Malaysia/_TEAMBUILDING/

Giants, Wizards & Elves



– can think up some games where people are put in teams of two, one is blindfolded and they try to achieve some tasks. Perhaps several such teams compete at once, all going in one direction to get a certain object for their team, crossing the paths of the others, and get back to their partner (or other destination) as a finish line. Give everyone a certain amount of time to work out commands. When you say “go” perhaps each seeing person can turn over a card so they know what object their team needs to get. Perhaps the card will also state the end destination, different for each team (the distance traversed should be the same for each), always trying to cross the paths of others. An alternative is to do it in a circle, crossing from one end to another. Can put objects in the way, possibly make the minefield like a penalty (glass bottle that when knocked over must be put back up and person must hop on one leg and count to something etc. Less if just touch it?).

– could combine with obstacle course type thing where have to crawl under/over horizontal ropes and other stuff.
– hanging ropes or things can also serve as mine (don’t touch) etc.
– will obviously want to switch roles between walker and controller at some point.
– when teams are preparing, tell them they need special signals and to recognize each others voices, assuming will have everyone jumbling at once, heh heh.
– perhaps could combine it in some way with strings on the ground and obstacle course. If someone is so fast that they catch up and touch the person ahead of them, they have to switch place with a certain gap (so that the person behind has to work a bit to catch up).
– when blindfolding, might want to wear shades or something to protect eyes from poking sticks etc.

Bamboo Ball Obstacle Course

– cut a bamboo lengthwise in half and then into smaller segments. Give each smaller segments to each member. Then there is a small ball which rolls down this half pipe and the members must roll the ball along an obstacle course. Each person must plant their feet firmly and not move them while they are in control of the ball. The members must take turns in succession, so a line is formed and they go to the other end of the line as soon as they’re done with their turn. Maybe make a big circle obstacle course so that each team starts somewhere else and all teams must complete the circle, making it fair. Or one team does it and the others watch, to make it more fun. Perhaps do it to follow some string in the forest, over various stuff. If the ball falls the person how made it fall must walk five feet lengths backwards along the path and continue from there. Another person of their team (the previous person in succession) must always drop the ball into the bamboo gutter pipe.

– for added fun, perhaps the other teams could try to distract them and stuff.

String Spokes

– say the strings cannot touch the ground, to prevent the less competent from not taking part and letting the more competent to steer everything.

– make up some task that have to pick up something and move it somewhere else. Maybe a separate string closes something in order to pick up an object, and then release it elsewhere.

Group Mandala

– a psychological exercise in placing personal objects and moving them around and discussing how each person feels about the position of their object within the group (of objects). More at file:///C:/Users/goof/Documents/Downloads/erase/rainforest%20place%20in%20Malaysia/_TEAMBUILDING/, where should download< the links from within for further reading.

– interesting psychological study of dynamics of people within a group environment and should be studied further.

Balloon Frantic

Two to three inflated balloons per person are needed and a stopwatch.  Each person has a balloon, with the rest in a nearby pile.  Everyone begins bouncing their balloons in the air.  Every five seconds, another balloon is added.  See how long the group can keep the balloons bouncing before receiving six penalties.  A penalty is announced loudly (to create stress!) by the leader when a balloon hits the floor, or once on the floor, if is not got back into play within five seconds.  The leader keeps a cumulative score by shouting out “one”, “two”, etc.  When the leader gets to “six”, time is stopped.  After some discussion, the group tries to better its record with another attempt.

– can also have fun when blowing them up. More ideas at file:///C:/Users/goof/Documents/Downloads/erase/rainforest%20place%20in%20Malaysia/_TEAMBUILDING/


Survival Games

– The purpose of this is to show people that there is greater strength in a group working by consensus than as individuals choosing their own way. We all have some knowledge and if we pool that all together, we stand a better chance of survival in tough conditions.

– As you might imagine, decision by consensus is usually difficult to attain and will consume more time than other methods of deciding an issue. (As a group, try to make each ranking one with which all group members can at least partially agree. Learning to ‘give and take’ about the decision is also an important outcome.) As the energies of the subgroup become focused on the problem at hand (rather than on defending individual points of view), the quality of the decision tends to be enhanced. Research indicates, in fact, that this approach to problem solving and decision making results in a significantly higher-quality decision than by implementing other methods such as the use of majority power (voting), minority power (persuasion), and compromise.

– give 10 minutes for each individual to decide what order, 20 minutes for each group to discuss and choose the best option. Then use a point system to see how far they deviated from the US Coast Guard’s recommendation (one point for each that is away from their choice – so the lower the score the better). Show all and compare the individual scores against the group scores (assume group scored better) and have open discussion on the benefits of group discussions/consensus.

In the decision-by-consensus process, each subgroup member is asked to:
1. Prepare his or her own position as well as possible prior to meeting with
the subgroup (but to realize that the task is incomplete and that the missing
pieces are to be supplied by the other members of the subgroup).
2. Recognize an obligation to express his or her own opinion and explain
it fully, so that the rest of the subgroup has the benefit of all members’
3. Recognize an obligation to listen to the opinions and feelings of all other
subgroup members and to be ready to modify one’s own position on the
basis of logic and understanding.
4. Avoid conflict-reducing techniques such as voting, compromising, or giving
in to keep the peace and to realize that differences of opinion are helpful;
in exploring differences, the best course of action will make itself apparent.

– c:\Users\goof\Documents\Downloads\erase\rainforest place in Malaysia\_TEAMBUILDING\\01_activities and exercises\_Survival Scenario Exercise\ – Prisoner’s Dilemna – interesting case where two groups are separated and must decide if they will tell the truth or not, after they are told that their accomplice fully testified and that both will be let off easier if tell the truth. Pg. 10 – interesting case of order of importance of survival gadgets. The next case is also interesting but not so much. Two good survival tests.

– for the first survival test, after the group chooses the order of importance, if it is far from what order the US Merchant Marine chose, tell them how far off they were and then to do it again, but this time to analyse each item and think of what it could be used for, besides the obvious or what they are used to using it as in civilization; after discussing about that then think of what is the most important survival factors and consider which item would best serve those goals. Think out of the box… Prepare a speech before starting that some people are natural leaders, with confidence and it is easier for them to assert their assert their will; while others may be shy and rather step aside and let others make the decision, and not make waves. But “might does not make right” and it is better to pool ideas. Every idea and perspective counts to increase the chances of a group’s survival. Just because someone is confident does not mean they are right. In fact, their confidence can be a cause of their blindness, and asserting their opinion means they are serving their own pride than the interests of the group. So explain to them that it is in the interests of theirs and the group’s survival for such natural leaders to encourage the more shy to speak their minds (which applies in the work environment as well), while it is better for the shy people to try and assert their opinions more, because the increased chance of the group’s survival inevitably means the increased chance of their own survival (and asserting their opinions more at work will improve their chance of career advancement, as well as help the company be more competitive – ingenuity of thinking, more productive group work). Explain how it is not about competing against one another, or simply voting or stepping aside not to make waves, but about everyone working together as a team, encouraging one another, so that all ideas are put on the table to help the best decision to be made. Maybe take them out in the jungle somewhere to provide a setting to create an environment of survival and help them get into the right frame of mind. {This can also be mentioned for promotion – the fact that we have such environment at our disposal.}

– A function structure chart might be a “middle-of-theroad” approach to function analysis for many people. It is a good motivator because it directly demonstrates the usefulness of function analysis for completely understanding and solving a problem systematically, front to back, back to front, top-down and bottom-up. Talked about more in …

– c:\Users\goof\Documents\Downloads\erase\rainforest place in Malaysia\_TEAMBUILDING\\01_activities and exercises\_Survival Scenario Exercise\MoonExercise.pdf – another survival test, ranking 15 objects of what need most and decided by NASA

Back to the Travel Goof.

How to Lose Weight


After watching the documentary Hungry for Change it inspired me to finally write this page.

I have been slim most of my life, naturally athletic, although I ate like a horse and people around me were astounded where all that food could have gone. But at a certain point I started to gain weight, until one day I could not see my penis when I stood straight in the shower. This for me was the last straw and I decided to do something about it.

Now you may say that is a relatively minor case of obesity, but the point is that the same principles apply no matter how overweight you are. I got to a point where my pride stepped in, I decided to do something about it, researched it and found ways how to achieve my goals. And it does not have to be painful at all.

The underlying principles are:

– what you eat
– how much you eat
– exercise
– attitude

What You Eat


Pictures of my travels.

Another documentary, Super Size Me, is about a perfectly healthy person who agreed to be filmed in an experiment to see what would happen to him if he ate only at McDonald’s. By the time the 30 days were nearing its end he had gained a great amount of weight and his doctor told him he should stop the program because it was causing serious and life-threatening damage to some of his critical organs.

The food industry, like any other, is geared towards profit. They hire smart scientists to play with chemical formulas and ingredients to addict the consumer to their product, and use marketing to convince you it is good for you. McD’s might say “our hamburger contains pure beef”, like a tobacco company might say their cigarette “contains pureVirginiatobacco”. If both contain 0.01% of each substance then their statement would be true, but what else does it contain?

Anyway, to make a long story short, simply try to stay away from any chemicals or processed/junk food and eat healthy, preferably as much green vegetables as possible. As Hungry for Change explains, most people who go on the standard diet by consuming such gimmicks as diet coke actually gain weight. The package may say “fat free”, but the concoction of chemicals and other substances in it actually cause a lot of damage. Our bodies are natural, so why feed it with chemicals? You can spend some time researching the damaging effects of aspartame, but your best option is simply to start eating healthy and natural foods and to stay away from anything processed. Processed flour, which is found in almost everything, is also not good. If you are not getting enough vitamins in your food, your body will crave for more of it and you will be programmed to eat more, but if you keep eating foods which do not provide vitamins this craving will not be satisfied and you will end up eating more of the same, which will only contribute to your weight.


Pictures of my travels.

Instead, you can stuff yourself with vegetables, your body will be fully satisfied, your skin will clear, you will shine and radiate, feel good about yourself, and save on medical costs because your body has returned to a balanced, healthy state so that it is better able to fight diseases.

In university my diet was steak and rice every day, chicken on Sundays and a salad dinner every second Sunday. So when I decided I wanted to become a vegetarian you can imagine my taste buds were not the most pleased. But after about six months I realized that my taste buds had in fact changed: I began to look forward to my next salad meal and even looked with some distaste at meat. Beef and particularly pork are not good for your intestines. They line the intestinal walls, making it more difficult for nutrients to pass through them into your blood stream. There are many reasons to avoid these two, such as the hormones pumped into them for profit and other toxins, not to mention that your body has to work harder to break meat down into glucose – its fuel.

Here is my favourite salad recipe.

Get an empty pickle jar and use it for mixing your salad dressing, into which I like to put pesto, blue cheese, Dijonmustard, black ground pepper, sea salt, cumin/caraway seeds, olive oil and filled almost to the top with diced garlic. You can keep this for a long time in your fridge, so make a big batch and let it brew away.
Once you’re done that, make your colourful fresh salad, add more cumin, pepper and sea salt (much healthier than regular table/iodized salt), mix in sesame seeds and whey powder (for protein and nice sweet taste), then add two table spoons of your evil brew and top that up with olive oil and some nice vinegar, like jasmine rice. Perhaps a squeeze or two of lime/lemon, which help cleanse your body. Mix in the juices for a few minutes and then keep mixing through while eating. You can mix in other nuts and play around with it.

 Truly delicious, made even more delicious once you are aware what juicy and healthy nutrients you are adding to your system. No need to buy some brand dressing with chemicals and fat in it but use good old olive oil, which helps reduce cholesterol, is an antioxidant to help you age slower, and has many other positive qualities. The documentary suggested that the best approach was to juice your veggies. You can spice it to improve flavour, otherwise just invent your own concoction which can taste delicious without any spices.


Pictures of my travels

Or if I cook a veggie meal or soup I like to add lots of garlic, tumeric and ginger, which have amazing healing powers, will naturally strengthen your immune system, and keep you from getting sick. I almost never get sick, but if I do manage to catch a cold, I can usually kill it in about half a day.

Also, there are certain veggies which actually make you feel full while helping you to lose weight, such as: apples, broccoli, almonds and surprisingly the potato (roughly in this order of effectiveness). For salads cucumbers can be quite filling but give you mostly water and some nutrients. Keep in mind that most of the nutrients in vegetables like potatoes, carrots and cucumbers are in the peel, so either scrub well or buy directly from a farmer.

The fat of mackerel is also healthy for you and in fact breaks down your fat and helps you lose weight. Eskimos traditionally eat a lot of fat from the ocean, to help keep their bodies warm during the cold winters, yet they can maintain slim bodies.

Humans have survived for hundred of thousands of years on nuts and fruits, with the occasional meat. Return back to that and your body will function as it should. Do not believe the captains of industry, who will employ all means to convince you this or that chemical is good for you. Your body is a natural being, the bible says it is God’s temple – treat it that way and you will be much healthier and happier. Here is an interesting read on how Jesus instructed the Essenes what they should eat.

How Much You Eat

But even with a salad diet I found I couldn’t take off that last layer around and in my belly. I was determined to return my shape to the beautiful gymnastics years in university. As I aged I noticed my metabolism had been declining. When I used to eat two large plates for breakfast, a bag and a half for lunch and at least two large plates for dinner (you expend a lot of energy when tree planting),


Pictures of my travels – London

I now eat a big bowl of salad per day, three beers and I’m done. I’ve even started experimenting with eating every second day. Like one person I met explained, if he sees that his belly is protruding ever so slightly, he will simply not eat until it is burned off. Our bodies are actually capable of photosynthesis and converting the nitrogen, carbon and hydrogen in the air into proteins, just as plants do. A surprisingly high amount of our food intake can come from this source, whether we eat or not. But I’m probably an extreme example since I fast four times a year and have found that my body’s metabolism has really slowed down as a result. But this too can be good, as the only scientifically proven way they have extended a rat’s life is by denying it of food. When I fast I actually have more energy (mind energy, for thinking, although less energy for intense physical movements). 60% of our body’s energy can be used to convert food into glucose fuel, especially if eating meat. Animals instinctively fast whenever they are injured, because it frees up a lot of the body’s energy to focus on healing itself rather than breaking down food. If you feel pain when fasting it is because toxins are being released into your stomach, but once you cleanse your body of this you will feel absolutely no pain from a lack of food. There are many ways you can detox your body and this is important to keep it healthy and operating properly. Fasting is one, or there are certain diets. My fasting and connected pages explain a lot about this.


Pictures of my travels – Turkey.

Now all this may sound rather horrific to someone who is used to gorging themselves on food, but this does not have to be painful at all. Take your time. By switching to good foods and staying away from processed ones and chemicals you will have accomplished a lot. Over time you will see a change for the better, feel better about yourself and get more motivated to take further measures.

I believe that eating a lot of food is psychological and I myself would like to eat much more, simply for the pleasure. So stuff yourself with salad and all the good stuff, indulge yourself with the occasional naughtiness, and be conscious every time you eat. Eat slowly, as it takes about 20 minutes before your stomach even registers the food and you start to feel full or satisfied. You can sit at your desk and nibble away at almonds and veggie snacks all day long, with perhaps a bowl of soup for lunch. This is a healthier way to eat. You should also eat most of your food earlier in the day, for a full stomach before sleep will be converted to fat.

Food is also used as a compensation for depression. You might have a low self-esteem and find satisfaction in stuffing your face with sweets, grow in size, get an even lower self-esteem and then stuff yourself more to compensate. You need to address the root of your problem if this is the case. Make a shift in your life to preoccupy yourself with activities in nature and other positive energy inducing environments and surroundings. Learn about the powers of positive thinking and how to take control of your life for the better. There is no need to get stuck in a self-perpetuating rut, getting down on yourself and only dig yourself in deeper.


I’m sure this will be a dreaded word for many, but it really does not need to be painful. I remember when I was young I once caught my mom doing situps on the floor while wearing a plastic outfit designed to make her sweat more and lose weight faster. That must have been horribly uncomfortable. Like the shift in diet above, exercising does not need to be painful but can be a pleasure.


Pictures of my travels – Myra Turkey.

First of all, one important trick is not to overdo it, otherwise you risk creating a mental block and giving up outright. It should be a pleasurable experience every time.

The thigh muscles are the largest in the body, and therefore the best for burning off calories. Work in an office building? Why not get to work a few minutes early and walk up a few flights before jumping in the elevator. Not enough to make you sweat but just a little blast. Over time you will see that you can climb more flights before you start perspiring.

Walk as much as possible. Personally I get frustratingly bored standing at a bus stop and prefer to walk to the next one if I feel I have the time. If there is a park on the way to work you can get off the bus a bit earlier and walk the remainder. Look at a map and think of ways to sprinkle your day with such lovely little walks. Little blasts of nature will always make you happier.

You can join a dance club. Be creative and find things you enjoy. Every bit of movement is good and necessary for a healthy body. When you move your heart pumps faster to bring more oxygen into the blood stream, and a faster circulating blood stream generally works faster at cleaning and maintaining it. Cycle with a friend through the country, or just look for interesting ways and excuses to get some movement into your day. I work at home and one trick I do is I try to do a few pushups or other exercises whenever I have to get up from my seat. Over the day that can add up to less than half an hour, not much of an investment, but it definitely keeps my body in good shape.


This gets back to why you may be obese in the first place. Sure, the types of foods you were previously eating played a large role, but many times people eat a lot to compensate for depression or low self-esteem. I once translated a book on the power of positive thinking, and have learned much about it. There is also an interesting documentary called Water. It may seem hard to believe but there are many amazing qualities about water, one of which is its ability to store positive energy. The bible says we should always give thanks and bless our food before we eat it. This is because food, like our bodies, is made up of a large amount of water (our bodies 85%). Not only that but your unconscious mind can be reprogrammed. Our waking, conscious mind uses less than 10% of our brain, so who knows all what goes on in the unconscious 90%. But you can reprogram yourself.


Pictures of my travels – Myra Turkey.

Even if you have to lie. First, imagine what you want to look like. Every time thoughts surface where you start to cut yourself down, stop and replace those thoughts with beautiful ones, of how you want to look. Keep focusing on that, crowding out the negative thoughts, and you will find that, in time, it actually works. The author who wrote about the positive thinking approach explained that he was extremely obese but that, after imagining for an extended period how he wanted to look, he simply lost an appetite for bread, naturally changed his diet and eventually lost all of his excess. Like the Hungry for Change explains, look at yourself in the mirror, stare right into your eyes and tell yourself you are a good person. If you keep repeating it it eventually registers in your conscious mind and begins to have an effect. Otherwise, if you continue to cut yourself down, you will lose all faith and hope in a solution, and probably just give up and gorge out on the worst foods. If you cut yourself down you will feel you deserve it and you will abandon all hope.

In short, none of these steps have to be painful. Start reprogramming yourself, make a simple and healthy shift in your diet, get out into nature when you can, make a careful note every time you put something in your mouth and be conscious about it, and you will definitely see an improvement. Once you do that will only motivate you further, and your change for the better will accelerate. You will feel better about yourself, your confidence will improve, your skin will be rosy and radiate, people will compliment you, you will be sick much less often and you will be a much happier person. Just take the first step, no matter how small, and keep focusing. If it takes years it does not matter. The journey there will be rewarding as you watch the improvements in yourself. A win, win, win scenario, so go, go, go!

Go to my General Health pages for tips on other ways to stay healthy.

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Beercicle Machine – The perfect way to serve bottled beer.


Even better than draught beer on tap, although a glass inside an ice sleeve would serve draught beer nicely. I got the idea when I was in a café in hot and muggyThailand. I helped myself to bottled beer from their ice-cold fridge and ripped off an icicle from the fridge wall in the process, the icicle stuck to the side of my bottle.

frozen ice cold beer from beercicle machine

frozen ice cold beer from beercicle machine

The beer chilled my teeth coming out and tasted deliciously cold. I imagined the big icicle would keep my beer nicely chilled for a while, when it occurred to me a fridge could be designed to create these popsicle sleeves which could have an insulating layer on the outside (perhaps foam) and shaped inside to snuggly fit a beer bottle (or glass for draught beer). I imagine it would not be a very complicated process, where the fridge could be fine tuned to be close to freezing, and perhaps some experimented and measured time how long the bottle must stay outside, to warm up slightly before opening. The trick is to open it at just above zero, when the beer itself will not turn to ice but the bottle/glass and surrounding ice is at zero. It will keep the beer to near zero without freezing it. It has to get significantly cold for the beer to freeze while the bottle is still closed. So just avoid that and all should be okay. If you open the beer too soon the release of pressure will allow ice to form, destroying the beer that gets frozen.

Some of my other ideas and inventions.
Traveling around the world while working.

Global Warming Website


Working with a friend on his global warming website, which offers various solutions how to deal with the problem.

I spent a year helping a friend with some of his reconstruction projects throughout Europe(I also helped look for construction chicks to help us). He’d find some property in the mountains ofBulgaria or other place throughoutEurope, buy it from the owners as it was rather deserted, but because he is a structural engineer he can tell if the old, stone house has good structural integrity on which to build.

He sold his business to invest in this instead, but since he previously helped governments organize their mega projects, he worked to help the world global warming problem on the side as a pet project. I helped him with that as well and below is some correspondence concerning it.


cau dude,

in Letna beergarden working on your stuff and its nice out here.

Was thinking that it would be a good idea if you could provide me with a resume and info about your previous consulting company, so that it could give some credibility to the ideas you wanna sell, and a little blurb explaining that the ideas once sold can be provided with detailed plans etc. I could whip up a webpage(s) based on the text you send me. I think it would help sell it, otherwise it sorta just looks like a website talking about how things should be or something.

I’d also like to make some changes to the navigation structure. For example, I’d like to add some text “Read a story about this project in realisation!”

Some eye catcher and marketing stuff to convince the people to read further. Now the “Vision forPolynesia” etc. doesn’t really sound enticing or give a hint what’s behind the click. I think my sister could put some good input regarding this once I make some of my own changes. So basically asking if you’re okay with that, or if you have some other wording you would suggest etc. poop

Carbon offsets  – where the money goes

Emissions since 1750 comprise of just over half a trillion tonnes of carbon (you can keep track of the number, and the countdown to the release of the trillionth tonne, on the website).

This is estimated to have caused just under 1C (1.8F) of global warming (other things affect global temperature as well but, as it happens, their effects more-or-less cancel out over this period).

So if we release another 500 billion tonnes, we commit the Earth to a most likely warming of about 2C, which is widely regarded as the threshold for dangerous climate change, and a rubicon that governments of G8 countries and other major economies pledged this year not to cross.

If these trends continue, which is a relatively conservative “business-as-usual” scenario, we will release the trillionth tonne sometime in the 2040s – a date that is steadily advancing, as the underlying trend is for faster growth in recent years.

If governments are seriously committed to limiting global warming to less than 2C above pre-industrial temperatures, then must preserve the “trillionth tonne”, not just until 2020 or 2050, but until the whole issue of climate change is ancient history.

Questioning the carbon credit scheme:
Questioning Al Gore and global warming caused by humans:, and

check out:
My Climate

Global Warming – lot of interesting comments at bottom which call it a hoax (little correlation between global warming and CO2 emmissions)


hey dude, an idea popped in my head and thought I’d mention it. Hope it will not anger you.

In your Word letter to everyone you mentioned that no one was interested in helping you with your global warming idea, so you dropped it for the time being. I’d like to point out that I spent a lot of time making your website more seo friendly and studying the ebay idea, and didn’t charge you anything for any of that. I also sent you many emails with proposals etc. but I can’t remember you responding to any of them.

I also remember how you once reduced my labour wages retroactively but said you will continue to pay me the same rate for computer related stuff, even though I wasn’t doing that work for you.

Anyway, after these thoughts rummaging through my head, it occurred to me that perhaps you would like me to continue. If you do, I would propose continuing with the same agreement whereby a percentage would be used to pay back my debt to you, and the rest would be chump survival change for work which I could do in my spare time. Overall, work is picking up for me and I’m managing well enough, and slowly paying back my even greater debts now, but I could always find the time to squeeze in a little work for you. But, after carefully studying the ebay concept and reading other people’s experiences, I became rather convinced that this wasn’t the correct approach. But I could try whatever approach you would like to shoot for. In any case, kind of doubt that there will be funding in the world for such grandiose ideas. I see another bubble in the making and my conspiracy birdies tell me a second, even larger and more catastrophic crisis is in the making. Nevertheless, I can tweak your pages and help generate more traffic for them, or look into what is necessary to get funding from Richard Brandson, or whatever. Just to mention, recently I bought a book how to generate traffic to a website and picked up a lot of tricks, which I will slowly apply to my own pages. It’s rather labour intensive but effective. Anyway, just a suggestion. adio

More stories from the Travel Goof.

Prague Business Services


Need to do some business in Prague and looking for some contacts? I’m an entrepreneur who lived in Prague for 15 years and know a lot of people and places where to place free advertisements, and perhaps I could help you. Please contact me if there is anything you would like to accomplish in the Czech Republic. I own a translation agency and have thousands of Czech translators in my database. You can also read my reflections of the Czech Republic for my insight into the character of the people. My favourite way of finding customers for my various business ventures is through search engine optimization, so the following text will be just an endless ramble serving the purpose of getting this page near the top of google in appropriate keywords. Endless rambling, although it could still be interesting and insightful reading, from the perspective of someone who has lived in the Czech Republic during its transition from its suppression under a centrally controlled communist regime to western style capitalism. Please feel free to contact me with any request you might have concerning the Czech Republic, because I enjoy dabbling in any business venture. Or perhaps I could just help you out.


I actually like venture capitalism. It is interesting to operate a Prague or Czech Republic business, or any business for that matter, because it is a creative way to earn a living. Through such venture capitalism and Prague or Czech Republic business dealings, not only does it give me an opportunity to meet Czech business contacts, but I can often learn something new. That, after all, does make life more interesting than just going to some job in a business, being told what to do, and doing the same job from one day to the next. Getting involved in a Prague based business service or as many Czech businesses as possible, or in any other country for that matter, is also a way one can secure their own survival. With the world financial crisis and occasional economic downturns, I prefer to spread my survival net on a broader basis than simply to depend on a single employer, who can make me redundant one day and force me to scramble for work.

When I first moved to Prague and the Czech Republic, one of my first venture business concepts was import and export. I was seeking products to import to or export from the Czech Republic. It gave me the opportunity to meet many business people and contacts, travel around the country, and learn many things. Every country offers certain skills, has certain resources, supports many kinds of businesses, and through free and fair trade we can all benefit. On the other hand, too much trade and import and export, not only with the Czech Republic, can be a bad thing because it just ends up burning more fuel and harming our increasingly fragile environment. For this purpose, I would suggest an international tax per kilometer on all import and export goods and which would go towards protecting nature. However, many import and export business services can be provided through the internet, which would not have any negative consequences on the environment. Another positive effect of import and export services, or any cross border business transaction, not only those with the Czech Republic, is that it gives the opportunity to spread wealth around the world. But such foreign business transactions and trade should be fair, if you take into consideration how native people around the planet were exploited of their natural resources to generate profits for the greedy venture capitalists who have little qualms about their unethical business practices. There are too many of us on this planet and things have gotten to the point, not only in the Czech Republic, where we should work towards an equitable world order serving justice and fair treatment for all. A world body should be set up to manage trade and cross border business dealings, not only concerning import and export services with the Czech Republic, but all countries, to ensure that weak countries and poor people around the world are not exploited. If a region of the world is economically depressed, the local inhabitants will naturally have lower wages, which should attract business investments. This can be a good thing, but not when such business investments take advantage of the desperate nature of the locals. Some sort of international rules should apply across all borders, not only concerning business transactions and import export services with the Czech Republic. It is good that the lower wages in some regions of the world attract business capital, because this can create translation and other jobs or work, whereby those employed locals will spend their money and spread the wealth locally. But it is important that the people are treated fairly and have similar minimum standards of decency as we enjoyed in the rich west. The Czech Republic was economically poor after the fall of Communism. Between the world wars the Czech Republic was the sixth most industrial country in the world. The Czech people can be hard working, creative and industrious, but the cold war and Russia’s fears of the west led it to take control of Eastern European countries following the end of the Second World War. The Russians wanted to create a buffer zone against the west, which had attackedRussia throughout history. Because the communist system is centrally managed and bureaucratic, it is not as efficient as a capitalist system, where people are free to experiment with different business concepts and work for themselves. Countries, like the Czech Republic, which were enslaved under this bureaucratic, centrally controlled system, were repressed and could not develop as quickly as business services operating in the west. After the fall of communism, investment capital flooded into the Czech Republic, import and export services boomed, and the Czech Republic climbed out of the repressive regime to slowly catch up to the west. This is a natural process if we allow for free and fair trade through fair import and export services, and fair investments. If wages are lower in a certain country, the goods and services such people produce are less expensive, and become attractive to people from richer countries. They buy these goods and services through import and export, employing these people, and in this way wealth is distributed around the planet. But the Czech Republic has the advantage that it is nestled neatly into the heart of Europe, right next to Germany,Austria, and many countries of the rich west. It follows that the Czech Republic, of all the post communist and repressed countries, would climb out of its poverty faster than other countries, such as the Ukraine. Tourism also plays a large role in helping theCzechRepublic catch up to the west. Prague is a beautiful city, and when tourists come to visit, they are just spending their money, whereby tourism is a great form of business in general. Import and export services can be good to help poor countries catch up to the rich west, but import and export implies that something needs to be exported. Usually poor and undeveloped countries can export little more than their raw resources. It takes time to build up an industry. Which is why tourism, not only to the Czech Republic, is a great business because locals are just receiving money for practically nothing. The tourists have to stay in hotels, eat in restaurants, visit sites, pay for transportation, and then they leave. Most of this expended money is then distributed locally. The hotel needs to hire local staff, the restaurant buys local food. So countries which are not like the Czech Republic and geographically located so close to the rich west will find it takes longer to catch up to the rich west. Especially if they are locked in a war with their neighbours. This is one of the greatest reasons whyAfrica is suffering so much. The Czech Republic fell far behind the west because it was forced to operate under a repressive regime which did not allow its people freedom to experiment with venture capitalism and various import export ideas. Tourism was repressed as well. But the Czechs are peaceful people. This fact, together with the country’s close proximity to the rich countries of Europe and the industrious nature of the Czech people made it inevitable that the country would climb quickly in its wealth towards catching up with the west. This same principle applied to Poland, Hungary, Slovakia, Croatia, Slovenia, and the three Baltic states of Lithuania, Estonia and Latvia. All these countries have benefited from foreign investments, venture capitalism, increased business services and import and export services. Poland, Hungary and Slovakia even formed a trading block with the Czech Republic to support a good business environment. All these countries enjoyed peace and benefited from their close proximity to the rich countries of western Europe. Romania and Bulgaria are now coming into the loop and beginning to catch up as well. But countries which are locked in war end up spending precious financial resources towards destruction rather than investing it into needed infrastructure and creating a healthy environment for businesses to operate in.

But proximity also plays a role. The Ukraine, not as geographically well placed as theCzechRepublic, is in a bit of a vacuum. It’s main trading partner used to beRussia, but once the communist regime collapsed, Russia had enough problems of its own during its transition to capitalism, in which case trade and export and import with the Ukraine collapsed and the country had to scramble for new business dealings with the west. The Czech Republic already had traditional business ties with Germany and other western countries, so its transition to venture capitalism was hardly as painful. I have faith thatRussiawill catch up to the Czech Republic and other wealthy countries, but it will take time. Another advantage of the Czech Republic is that it has a good social system. The transition to venture business capitalism and entrepreneurial services was hardly as brutal and painful as it was inRussia. The communists at the top – for they certainly remained in power (they just changed faces and appearance) – were not so concerned about the plight of their poor folks but mostly in embracing capitalism as quickly as possible so that they could catch up to the west. It was becoming apparent that communism and such bureaucratic, central and inefficient planning was failing against the west. The strategy of the communists was to expend as much of their resources on military might. They were not interested in supporting business, free enterprise, and imports and exports. Furthermore, they had to spend much of their economic resources repressing such countries as the Czech Republic in order to maintain their buffer zone against the west. But the principle of free market and business is that the ability to make profits creates incentive and rewards ingenuity. A centrally planned and repressive regime can never be as productive. In the west, as is now becoming apparent in the Czech Republic, 60% of government tax revenues comes from small and medium sized businesses. Small and medium sized businesses are the staple of success of capitalism. This is because it engages people on every level, if they so choose. People are free to experiment with business ideas, and successful ideas are rewarded with profits. The communists eventually realized they could not maintain the inefficient status quo and keep repressing countries like the Czech Republicforever, so they began to plan a transition towards capitalism. And those who would plan for such a transition would obviously be in a good position to prepare for it. The Communist in power, who had been repressing their own people and those of the Czech Republic, had access to financial resources and were embedded in the bureaucratic loop, so it is understandable that they would be the first to benefit from a transition to capitalism and business services. The poor at the bottom would have to wait decades to benefit from Reagan’s famous trickle down theory, when the filthy rich Russians could throw their money around and spread the wealth slowly to the rest of the population. Czechs care for their people and, while adopting new business services, opening the floodgates of foreign investments and working towards increasing trade and import and export services, they were careful to keep a cap on rents. In Moscow, which has become the most expensive city in the world, old grandmothers were simply thrown out of their apartment windows by mobsters and thugs who wanted to capitalize on extremely high rents. The Czechs, on the other hand, made it difficult for rents to increase too fast. The rent controls required that the tenants remain living in the flat, otherwise there was incentive to move out and rent the flats at a much higher rate to foreigners. This was often done illegally, but those profits should technically go to the owners of that Czech accommodation. Because the transition to a capitalistic and business environment was more careful and controlled than inRussia, Czech grandmas were fortunately spared the fate of being thrown out of their windows.

In any case, Prague was an interesting place to live in during this transition. I came to the Czech Republic shortly after “the fall of the wall”. Everything looked grey and bleak. People looked at me with a sparkle in their eyes as if I was a gallant saviour with money oozing out of my pockets and willing to help them out of their poverty. Or if I was not willing, they were certainly willing to swindle me out of my money in any creative way they could find. The Czechs felt robbed because of the repression they had to suffer under the Russians, and felt fully justified in swindling anything out of me, since I was so blessed to have grown up in the west. Where businesses and import and export services were free to operate, and where capital investments would be channeled in the efficient way that a free market economy can nurture. I couldn’t even buy bread in the Czech Republic without the cashier raising the price somewhat. But changes towards the better were inevitable, and it was interesting living through the transformation that the Czech Republic underwent and to witness the process in person. Or to be active in my own business dealings and take a crack at import and export services myself. The Czech Republic has gone a long way towards catching up to the west. Many large car manufacturers have invested heavily into the local industry and set up their own manufacturing bases there, which has inevitably supported many spin off industries. I am glad that the Czech Republic has been successful in adopting business services, but with development also comes stagnation. The transition to venture capitalism is complete, imports and exports are flowing, and business services are successful, but the transition and the old days of the “wild east”, as they used to say, are over, and it was time for me to move on to more interesting pastures. I’ve always wanted to travel, and one of the greater reasons I moved to the Czech Republicwas because of its central location in Europe so that I could travel around Europe. Unfortunately, my business kept me pinned to my desk, but since my business is primarily internet based, I devised a system whereby I could take my work with me, and now I can travel freely around the world at will. I would love to help develop businesses and support import and export trade in other poor countries of the world, and I am active on many levels – this makes life interesting for me. But I wrote this page because, through my translation service, I occasionally get approached about setting up business operations in the Czech Republic. Therefore I wrote this page with a focus on the Czech Republic and to help attract business partners who are interested in importing from or exporting goods to the Czech Republic. Hope you found my endless ramblings moderately interesting, and hope you have a nice day!

Czech to English Online Translations Translator
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Power from Zeppelins and Solar for Laptops


A Few Electrical Oriented Inventions I Toyed With

don’t have much faith anything will come out of these ideas, but in the least some interesting discussions, hopefully.

Back to my electrical storm harnessing, they’re now coming out with ways to charge cell phones etc. wirelessly, so if that’s possible, I assume it would be possible to throw up into the atmosphere a bunch of zepellins. I imagine that there would be fewer at the top, they would be layered, with more at the bottom, so that the electricity would be distributed into smaller and smaller currents. Like little lightnings which would get smaller and smaller as they get down to the ground. On the ground there would be a whole bunch of lightning rods on the highest office buildings, so that the voltage and current would be the smallest at that level. As the positive charge would build up in the clouds, perhaps the highest zepellings could get super negatively charged or something and somehow attract the lightnings or draw the positive energy in as frequent and small lightnings as possible. Suck off the positive charge as it develops, and funnel it down to the ground in pyramid fashion, so that it becomes the smallest and most consistent stream of energy on the lowest level. Then it could be distributed into the network and possibly other cities as a means of overfill etc. I guess one of the largest problems is what to do with the excess and the requirment to have sufficient breakers at every possible junction. Guess the battery technology isn’t developed enough yet, but I assume at some point this will be possible. It only makes sense. harnessing the positive energy buildup in the atmosphere somehow.

On another note, after chuckling while watching some guy try to parallel park, not a big money idea, but maybe at least a funny stoner idea, but I assume there is a certain class of people out there who would be willing to spend one or two thousand bucks to help them parallel park. Morons with a lot of money and who just don’t have spacial understanding. I’m told that women generally don’t have the spacial knack like guys do. Anyway, my vision is some remote control device. They are given simple instructions to park parallel and next to some vehicle, perhaps two feet away from it or something. then they get out of their vehicle and press Park. The computer kicks in and knows what to do. If they did not park correctly next to the vehicle, there is a Stop button and some adjust buttons. For example, they could press the + sign twice, meaning a two step adjustment in the “right” direction or something. Then the computer would kick in, drive forward a correct distance, and then backup with the correct adjustment. I’m sure this could be figured out. With the person outside, they can see how close they can keep driving without banging into the next vehicle, making the parallel parking so much faster. There would obviously be a Speed Up and Slow Down button on the remote, and they could always stop it to get back in and finish it, or just use the remote, perhaps with a little thumb wheel or something, after which they press the Lock button, the car beeps, and they walk along their busy way looking reaaaal cool. The bistanders will of course want one too so that they can show off.


Hey, wanted to run an idea across you which I had recently. I like to call it my one laptop per village idea. I know about this “one laptop per child” project, but I think mine might be more practical. As you might know I’ve been living in a truck the last two years, basically surviving on the sun, and with my two solar panels and one battery my laptop can last until the morning. During the day if its sunny or even bright enough I can charge all my mobiles and plug in tons of stuff at the same time, but once the sun goes down there’s enough juice to keep the laptop going till the morning. So my idea was to try to deliver one package to each village. Probably a used laptop would be sufficient and people around the world could donate that. The thing I heard bad about the one laptop per child idea is that it doesn’t even run Windows, so it just turns out to be a big calculator or something and not useful for real work. I also survive through the internet, so the idea would be to help these villages hook up to the net and give them a means to feed themselves. Worst case scenario they could drive somewhere with a memory stick and blast off the work through an internet café, until the government gets around to setting up wifi for them. Heard there are several projects going in the world to get cheap wireless going in Africa, so hopefully in time. In the meantime, I myself find myself doing the usb stick transfer thing, which works, since most of my actual work is offline. Worst case scenario they could use it to learn English or programming or whatever. I could figure out some useful configuration and just copy that to every donated/purchased computer, so they would have a ready made package. It could be running 24 hours a day and the kids could share it to learn, adults to work whatever, and once they actually get some work through it, they could focus on that and eventually buy a second computer etc. And more solar panels, if they don’t have electricity, and eventually put the entire village to work, and the next village etc.

Another thing is I use LED lights for my truck and they practically consume no energy. So probably you could light an entire village while also keeping the laptop going. One LED light is enough to read by and heard that a lot of kids found studying difficult because they didn’t have enough to read. The battery runs on 12V and each LED takes about 1.5 volts. Anyway, I’m sure you could have at least 20 to 30 bulbs going at a time with negligible strain to the system. You think such an idea could work? I could put together a website to attract investors, but I never did anything like this before. Any pointers?

My other ideas and inventions
Running a diesel engine on French Fry Fuel (cooking oil)

Converting Diesel Engine to Run on French Fry Fuel (used cooking oil)


I wanted to convert my 3.5 ton Mercedes beaut into a French Fry Fuel guzzling monster, so I could just tank up at restaurants and save on costs as I traveled cheaply around Europe in my Caravan, but after much research decided against it cause I was told that the impurities and gunk in the used vegetable post-cooking oil will halve the life of my engine. The engine was awesome and could apparently last up to 2.5 million km, but I felt bad halving all that to save myself some coin and wanted to give greater respect to this long love of mine. Hope she will reach her 2.5 while parked in the Bulgarian mountains waiting for a buyer, while I tour around Asia on a motorbike with sidecarcaravan continuing another chapter in my goofy life traveling.  Below is some correspondence and contacts I compiled while I was researching this. Many people do this and there are many companies providing manufactured components (it requires a second fuel tank. The regular tank starts on diesel, energy heats up second tank of used cooking oil, that heats up enough to raise its viscosity (fluidity, runningness) to spark the fuel (diesels don’t have spark plugs and work on pressure alone). It is a thriving industry. Diesel engines started on peanuts and eventually moved to petrol. Going back to nature is good. Enjoy the read and I hope you find something useful!


I own a 1988 3.5 ton Mercedez 709D diesel truck and I’d like to convert it to WVO (so it runs on French fry fuel – FFF as I like to call it). I live in it and travel around the world ( At around the end of May I plan to arrive and stay in Bulgaria for a few months, and was wondering if it would be possible to send all the necessary hardware there, how much would everything cost, and if you think some Bulgarian car repair shop would be capable of performing the conversion.

Above approach letter to the following:
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
– doesn’t seem totally related
[email protected]
[email protected], [email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected], [email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]


I own a 1988 3.5 ton Mercedez 709D diesel truck (VIN: WDB66906210804372) and I’d like to convert it to WVO (so it runs on French fry fuel – FFF as I like to call it). I reconstructed the interior as a caravan so that I can travel in it around the world ( One WVO specialist stated that the engine of this vehicle is not suitable for such a conversion. Can you confirm whether this is correct?

More people (asking about possible harm to engine):

[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]
[email protected]

Mostly Czechs, so sorry the response is Czech below, but very beautiful. The guy is a bicycle rider and said my lifestyle “dycha pohoda” (breathes relax).

key words in subject: konvertovani diesel motor na prirodni olej

Dobry den,

vlastnim 1988 3.5 ton Mercedez 709D diesel nakladak (VIN: WDB66906210804372), registrovany v cechach a chtel bych zkonvertovat motor aby bezelo na kuchynsky olej. Je to mozny? Prej je to mozny s diesel motory ale jeden expert mi rikal ze ne s timhle motorem. Cestuju po svete a chtel bych byt hodnejsi na prirodu.


dekuji za odpoved. Precet jsem to a vsiml jsem slovo “vznetove motory”. Teprve se jenom ucim ale zda se mi ze “znetovy” je “combustion” nebo “ignition” engine, co znamena ze ma “spark”, jako normalny benzinovy motor. Ja jsem myslel ze mam normalny stary diesel motor co nefunguje na princip “spark” (blesk, jiskra – ze je to normalni diesel co pracuje na princip komprese besk jiskra).

Tu technologie o co mluvim neni primichat rostlinny olej, jako nejaky 10%, ale normalne 100% odpadni kuchynsky olej co normalne restaurace vyhodej. Tu technologie ohreje ten olej aby zvysylo viskozity aby komprese normalne funguvalo. Puvodni diesel motor bylo vymysleno aby normalne fungoval na orech olej, a prej vsechny diesel motory fungujou na podobny princip. Staci aby ten olej byl predem dostatecne ohraty. Vyzaduje to dve nadrze: zacit s normalni diesel a prejit na kuchynsky (neni to “biodiesel” co se kupuje) az se ten dalsi nadrz dostatecne ohreje. Je to pomerne jedoduchy technologie, co prej dobre funguje na stary dieselovy motory. Doufam ze se rozumime. Tady je jeden webovy stranky s kym teprve diskutuju: Stale to vice lidi delaji. Jedna nemecka firma je: Zajima mi: je moje motor normalne diesel co nefunguje bez jiskra? Nechapu proc bych to nemohl takhle predelavat.


A diesel engine is a “compression-ignition engine” v. a petrol engine,  which is a “spark-ignition engine.” Any diesel engine can be converted  – how complex and expensive the conversion is does depend on the  engine in question, and some of the new engines are more expensive to  convert, but none are impossible. I’ll let Ed explain why there are some in the industry who are anti- biofuels.

sorry I meant “combustion” and not “compression”. My truck takes regular diesel fuel, and is 1988, so an older one. One of the conversion companies suggested a newer model – a Mercedes Sprinter as opposed to the Mercedes Vario that I have.

I can understand why some in the industry would be against this in general.

Here is an excerpt from the pdf file Mercedes sent me (translated from Czech):

“biofuel… converted to corresponding mixture of methylester oily acids (FAME)… Chemically unchanged vegetable oils (such as rape seed oil, sunflower..) must NOT be used in Mercedez Benz combustion engines. The use of chemically unchanged vegetable oil can in a short time damage such an engine, for the following main reasons: formation of carbon on the spray nozzles; in the piston ring grooves; in the oil channels and so on – due because of high viscosity; high boiling point (incomplete preparation of mixture); partial decomposition of carbon (during overheating).

Anyway, I’m skeptical, but also want to be careful and don’t want to damage the engine. I’ll do some more research, but if there’s any chance, I definitely want to move forward with this.

Ed doesn’t seem to be responding to my emails.


some of the conversion companies (after studying my model with vin number) and the manufacturer itself (Mercedes) are saying that I have a “combustion” diesel engine which is not suitable for vegetable oil and have listed some reasons (which I can forward to you if you like). My diesel engine is 1988, so an older model. Perhaps they are thinking about SVO and not WVO? I wouldn’t want to damage the engine. What is your take on this? I’d really like to convert, but I now live in my truck and definitely wouldn’t want to damage the engine.


I have a VIN number for the Mercedes engine, based on which the manufacturer and several conversion companies said that this engine was not suitable for such a conversion. I can send you the VIN number if you like.

The conversion companies which said the engine was not suitable for conversion, mostly after getting the VIN number from me (some just based on the data I originally submitted at the bottom of this email), are the following:

– – I believe a German based company, same as Mercedes


Will be glad to compensate you for your time and efforts.

I am not sure that I am familiar with the particular engine in your truck. Do you have a shop manual for it? Do you know what model engine it is? I don’t know of any manufacturer that will advise their diesel engines be run on SVO or WVO except for the new stationary engines by MAN and CAT.  Which conversion companies suggested that it should not be converted?

I do not supply conversion parts.

some conversion companies and the manufacturer (Mercedes) itself say that I have a “combustion” engine (although it takes regular diesel) and say that my model should not use vegetable oil (perhaps they were thinking SVO and not WVO). Others are saying it is definitely possible. I can send you some money by PayPal for your consultation but I definitely want to convert to WVO, while I definitely do not want to damage my engine. Any help or suggestions would be appreciated.


Hi I have been traveling and was at a meeting and presenting a submission yesterday for government for a feed-in tariff program for renewable energy. Ignore the stuff about not using vegoil in your Mercedes, they are sending you the party line and it does NOT apply to a two-tank heated approach which is what we do and we do it to AVOID the issues mentioned. Your engine is in fact much MORE suitable than a newer common rail, like a Sprinter has and you will not have any problems.

Hi Edward,

that is what I thought. I any case I will research some more, because it is my house and without it, well, I’m poopoo, so must be careful. Definitely look forward to materialising this. If possible please answer some of the other questions I sent you before. Have the cash in bank and would like to have all the parts inBulgariaaround the beginning of June.


thank you for the inquiry and your interest in ATG products. Meanwhile there are over 8.000 vehicles/motors worldwide equipped with our veg oil systems. Please find attached our current price list for ATG Vegetable Oil Kits. If you like to order we’ll send you a proforma invoice with shipment costs in advance. The sipping costs are depending on the size of the fuel tank. For a Mercedes 709D we recommend the kit P121012 + EK1210 fuel pump (not on price list, costs 68 EURO) + tank up to your choice. If you have any further questions please do not hesitate to contact us.

Hi Franz,

sounds good. Perhaps I could get a custom-made or used tank inBulgaria. Will research further. In the meantime, some conversion companies, including Mercedes itself, are saying that my engine is not suitable for such a conversion. Please tell me your opinion concerning this. I live in the truck and it would be catastrophic for me if something happened to the engine. I spent three years converting the truck into a caravan, and I run my business through an internet connection while I live in it.


You will want to purchase a manual for your engine/truck no matter what. Having one is usually a very good idea when long distance travelling and can easily save the cost of the manual with one use. If you plan to install your own conversion it is mandatory. They are often available on CD which is best for our purposes. If you cannot find a manual for your engine/truck I would not advise converting it.

all the companies offering conversion kits say it will come with instructions and a manual etc., but I will probably find it worthwhile to get more information etc. What do you suggest? I’d also like to research if it is possible with my truck. Perhaps some Mercedes forums or something. Know of anything you could suggest?


Hi Franz,

I think your offer is the best and I will go with yours, but I need some time to save up the money. In the meantime, one issue occurred to me: I gather the heater runs on 12V? My truck runs on 24V, but I have a separate 12V solar system for my mobile office etc. Also I think the truck’s alternator is rather week (it may even be kaput at the moment). I was thinking that perhaps I could buy a better alternator, and then a 24 to 12V converter and figure out some combined system to heat up the grease. If I use solar and heat it up before I start the truck, I gather I can use the grease right away and not start with diesel?

Thank you, and looking forward to eventually realising this conversion.


oh yah, and I wanted to ask you if you know anything about WVO or SVO, where WVO (what I’m interested in) is converting my old diesel truck so that it runs on used cooking oil. There’s a second tank which heats up to the proper viscosity, and you only switch to/from the diesel tank when starting or stopping.

Want to research it more but many seemingly smarter about cars dudes I’ve mentioned this to said I will trash and get about half out of my engine if I go this route. The engine has already gone 600k and sounds fantastic. Wouldn’t wanna hurt my truck’s heart. k


Haven’t done any bio-diesel research at all, since none of our cars are diesel. I have seen it a couple times, one thing is that goop gets everywhere – imagine heating up a bucket of grease in your trunk and the assorted slops, drips, leaks and such. I had a tour guide with that set up stop by to get a boat so I checked it out but it was messy as hell, all over his stuff. Maybe he was a slob, but there was a lot of hoses and you have to pour the stuff in each time and anyway…he liked it but now idea if it was WVO or SVO.

Yah, I think SVO is when you make your own biodiesel, which can be sloppy and time consuming. WVO is when you have a second tank which heats up the used stuff to the proper viscosity. Perhaps there is some filtration required but not sure. A fascinating subject and will have to research it thoroughly once I have the cash to convert (about 1500 Euro). Cheaper in NA though I think (found a good company if you need). later

Electrical Hookup in Caravan – DIY
Internet Connection While Traveling
Witchburning in the Czech Republic – with Led Zepelin’s “Stairway to Heaven” at half speed – scary shit!
Wherever I lay my hat, or park my truck, I shall KEEP TRAVELING