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Archive for the ‘India’ Category

the princie diamond

 

A 300 yeard old pink diamond has been sold for $39 million this week at Christie’s in New York.

The precious stone is from southern India and at one point belonged to one of the rulers of southern India, the Nizam of Hyderabad who in the 1930s was the richest man on earth.

nizam

 

The Nizam of Hyderabad in the 1930s who was at that time the richest man on earth.

Image source.

 

The diamond is 34.65 carats and originates from the Golconda mines in southern India from where many other spectacular diamonds have been found including the Koh i Noor and the Regent diamond.

koh-i-noor

 

The Koh i Noor is the diamon stone at the centre of the British crown.

Image source.

 

The diamond is called the “Princie Diamond” and is said to be the third biggest pink diamond in existence.

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In a previous article (click here to read) I gave a brief overview of the history of gold. In this article I will continue by talking about the other uses of gold in addition to it being used for personal adornment and beautification.

Gold for medicine

Believe it or not gold is used for medical purposes. It is claimed that it was used by the ancient Chinese as far back as 2,500 B.C. for a number of different illnesses such as smallpox,skin ulcers and measles. Further south in another part of Asia, the ancient Indians also used gold in their Ayurvedic treatments.

gold-facial

Gold used in a facial something which is practised in Ayurvedic medicine. In India even today facial kits made of gold are sold.

Image source.

It is also used to treat arthritis. It is often done by way of injections which can take quite a few months, but there are even creams.

arthritis_header

Image source.

It can also be used to treat types of cancer including prostrate cancer, and in the past few days two companies, Cytlmmune and AstraZeneca announced that they would work together to collaborate on developing nanoparticles to treat cancer. Radioactive gold particles are also used in some green teas to help treat cancer.

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Radioactive gold particles are used in some green teas to help treat cancer.

Image source.

Gold is used in artificial implants as it reduces the chances of being infected with bacteria. Many other implants cannot be used by some people because the material which they are produced from is more susceptible to being affected by bacteria, whereas that is not the case with gold which is far more bacteria resistant.

Gold is used for pregnancy testing including kits which can be bought in shops.

So from some of the examples above we can see that gold in addition to merely having pleasing aesthetic qualities and used by people to beautify either themselves or their possessions has very practical applications even in the field of human health. It has been used since very ancient times by civilizations such as the ancient Chinese and also the Indians and its medical usage is expanding with more research and technology being carried out to treat other medial problems and illnesses. So health-wise it has been used in the past and will be used in the future.

In my next article I will continue to talk about other uses of gold.

– Jahan Choudhry

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“Money, money, money…in a rich man’s world.”

So goes the famous Abba song.

Image source: Billboard.com

This was, or should I say still is, one of their most famous songs. Though the pop group sang about money, now something very historical is being debated in the band’s homeland of Sweden. Earlier this year there was discussion in the media about Sweden possibly being the first country on earth to abolish not “money” but money in the form of cash.

Image source: bbc.co.uk

Let me quote from a CBS article from around 5 months ago on this subject.

“Sweden was the first European country to introduce bank notes in 1661. Now it’s come farther than most on the path toward getting rid of them.

 

“I can’t see why we should be printing bank notes at all anymore,” says Bjoern Ulvaeus, former member of 1970’s pop group ABBA, and a vocal proponent for a world without cash.

 

The contours of such a society are starting to take shape in this high-tech nation, frustrating those who prefer coins and bills over digital money.

 

In most Swedish cities, public buses don’t accept cash; tickets are prepaid or purchased with a cell phone text message. A small but growing number of businesses only take cards, and some bank offices — which make money on electronic transactions — have stopped handling cash altogether.

 “There are towns where it isn’t at all possible anymore to enter a bank and use cash,” complains Curt Persson, chairman of Sweden’s National Pensioners’ Organization.”

http://www.cbsnews.com/8301-202_162-57399610/sweden-moving-towards-cashless-economy/

The article then continues and mentions that for example the ABBA singer, Bjoern Ulvaeus is campaigning for a cash-free Sweden and one thing which has led him to thinking that this is the best thing for the country is that his own son has been burgled three times. One of the arguments in fact for abolishing cash, is that it decreases crime.

 

Bjoern Ulvaeus, the former ABBA singer and now advocate of a cash-free Sweden.

Image source: Blick.ch

There are other arguments including the claim that it will also make corruption more difficult as all financial transactions will be traceable. Corruption with the syphoning of money and other things has led to severe European economic problems with countries like Greece having their economy in tatters. In fact Sweden only has 3% of its financial transactions in the form of cash. I do not expect that percentage to increase, rather decrease especially in the Iphone, digital phone age.

Is it a good idea?

Once Sweden does it, then perhaps other countries will be tempted to follow suit. At the very least it is not something that can be dismissed as the delusional rantings of internet posters or others but something which is practised in the country that gave us SAAB, Volvo, Ikea and other giant companies famous across the world.

A modern SAAB car.

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Another car giant, Volvo.

Image source.

I am completely against it. Though it can make life far easier and more convenient and can decrease burglary which can be a very horrifying and traumatic experience for those who undergo it, I feel that it comes at a far greater risk or loss and that is of our personal liberty.

The state is becoming increasingly more and more powerful and more and more we are losing our ability to be private individuals with the increase of modern technology, for instance the mobile phones that we use can easily trace as to whichever part of the world that we are in. For the state to have the power to find and monitor every single financial transaction that we carry out is very worrying, especially if the state is an undemocratic and illiberal one. Even in democracies themselves, many complain that the elected politicians are nothing but liars or even in some cases corrupt thieves coming in to power to enrich themselves and their friends.

Money to an extent defines us, and if not us, our current situation. By defining I do not mean that it is a valid measurement of your worth as a person or you morally, but it defines what you can and cannot do, or what you can do in your current circumstances. For the state to know how much money you have and everything you do with it they know far something far more important and fundamental than what food you eat, or what socks you wear every day which we would generally consider to be an invasion of privacy.

There is also the question of what happens if an electronic virus wipes damages our IT system, when people can hack in to NASA or the US defence department’s systems they can also damage other things. Making the world more and more IT-dependent is risky because as they say “do not put all your eggs in to one basket” and if we are reliant on IT alone then we suffer devastation if IT-based systems are damaged or destroyed. The recent blackout of 0.6 billion people in India (less than 10% of the world’s population) shows the damage that can be done in the modern electronic and technological age that we live in.

0.6 billion Indians without power in July 2012.

 Image source. 

 

Image source.

For me the abolition of cash is something reminiscent of George Orwell’s classic work, 1984 which depicted the horrifying scenario of an all-powerful state.

George Orwell’s famous masterpiece, “1984” which has had a huge cultural influence on modern society, with terms such as “Big brother” coming in to our every day lexicon.

Image source.

However this is a huge topic and much more can be written.

Thank you for reading.

– Jahan

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I have achieved a landmark.

I have reached over 50,000 views on my blog.

I have had visitors from from approxiately 179 countries (if I counted correctly) which you can see if you click on the world map on the top right hand of the blog or just click on this link: http://www2.clustrmaps.com/counter/maps.php?url=https://jahanc.wordpress.com

The top 9 countries are: The USA, the UK, India, Canada, Australia, The Netherlands, Germany, Italy, Germany and Brazil.

Below is a breakdown of these 9 top countries.

1. The USA

At the time of writing, 11,447 views with the top area being none other than the golden state, California with 1,865 views.

San Diego, California, the “Golden State”, which has the highest number of visitors to my site from the USA.

 Image source.

 2. The United Kingdom

 

 The United Kingdom is at no.2 behind the USA at 6,079 views. My clustrmap shows “Southwark” (perhaps the location of the internet service provider rather than the location of actual readers) as the top area for views to my site in the UK. 

 3. India

 

 3rd is the second largest country in the world and possibly the country with more English-speakers than any other, India, with 1,901 views. Out of those my map shows that Maharashtra leads the way with 404 views. Maharashatra is the state which is home to India’s commcercial centre, Mumbai.

 

 4. Canada

 

 No 4 is Canada, with 1,717 views and the state of Ontario leading the way with 854 views. 

5. Australia

 

 Australia is at no.5 with 1,261 views and Victoria ranks first with 441 views. 

 6. The Netherlands

The Netherlands has 956 views with 214 views from Noord Holland in first place. After the first five states, the US, UK, India, Canada and Australia, the Netherlands is the first country which does not have English as an official language as India has English as an official language and probably more people can speak English (to varying degrees) in India than even the US.

Amsterdam in Noord Holland, in the Netherlands.

 Image source, photograph by Hossein Mahboubi. 

 7. Italy

 

 No. 7 and the first major country where English is not spoken widely is Italy, as even the Netherlands (Holland) has English spoken widely through out the country and the Dutch are historically, racially and lingusistically related to the English. The English made a Dutchman, William of Orange, their King a few centuries ago and Dutch is the closest major language to English . The Italian province of Lombardy is in first place in terms of Italian visitors with 167 views out of 747 Italian views. 

 8. Germany

 

 Germany has 734 views and the area with my most German visitors is the “Lander” (state) of North-Rhine Westphalia the largest state in Germany in terms of population.

 

Image source. 

 9. Brazil

 

After Italy, Brazil is the second country in my top ten where English is not widely spoken (English is spoken very well by nearly every educated German) and has 680 views with 242 of them from Sao Paulo.

Sao Paulo at dusk.

 Image source. Now I have gained over 50,000 views which may seem impressive to some but when you consider that for example other websites for instance get 3,000 views a day it would only take them 17 days to get what I have achieved in around 2 years. However, nevertheless, it is still an achievement. If I have done it once, I can do it again and I intend to repeat it. However I don’t plan to repeat it once but twenty times so that I will get a million views to my blog (presently on this url ultimately to be transferred to http://jewelleryica.com). Target; 1 million views. Can I do it? Yes, I can. I have the capability and it is impossible providing I work hard and blog consistently and produce quality. 50,000 views is 20 times of 2,500 views and I reached 2,500 views 7 months after I first started blogging. Since that time I have duplicated this 2,500 views 2o times over and I can repeat the same process with my new amount of 50,000 views. By the way here is my proof that I have indeed achieved over 50,000 views on my blog:

 

 Thank you for reading and have a great day. – Jahan Choudhry

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