14 02 19

The traditional acoustic violin stretches four strings from tuning pegs to a tailpiece, over a bridge made of maple that transfers sound vibrations to the soundboard.

While there are electric pickups that can be fitted to an acoustic violin, a true electric violin has built-in pickups to amplify its sound. To avoid feedback caused by resonance in the violin’s hollow body, electric violins usually have solid bodies, and often have minimalistic designs to reduce weight.

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19 01 19

PMMA lenses are made from a transparent rigid plastic material called polymethyl methacrylate (PMMA), which also is used as a substitute for glass in shatterproof windows and is sold under the trademarks Lucite, Perspex and Plexiglas. PMMA lenses have excellent optics, but they do not transmit oxygen to the eye and can be difficult to adapt to. These (now old-fashioned) “hard contacts” have virtually been replaced by GP lenses and are rarely prescribed today.

Contact lenses and their concept have been around for much longer than most people believe.

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17 01 19

The Eternal Question: Should you buy a backpack or suitcase?

I have a confession: I hate suitcases for long trips. If you’re traveling around the world, your luggage is going to get thrown about and piled high on buses in random countries. It will get used and abused and it’s simply hard to walk up hills and stairs with your suitcase bumping everywhere. Try carrying a suitcase up five flights of stairs in a tiny place in Italy! It’s a pain! Suitcases are great for weekends away or if you’ll be staying in one place for a long time. I always use a carry on suitcase on my short trips. But, if you are moving around a lot and backpacking around the world, it is far better to have a proper backpack. They are simply more versatile, easier to carry up flights of stairs, pack into tight places, and overall, they just make life simpler. I don’t need to pick them up when getting on the escalator. Or drag them up a flight of stairs or across cobblestone streets.

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13 01 19

Setting diamonds separately between vertical bars of metal is another way to set precious stones.

Bar settings are similar to channel settings, but the difference is that channel settings enclose the diamond on all sides whereas the bar setting leaves the diamond exposed on two sides, held in place by the metal bars that secure the stones on the other two sides.

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