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Posts Tagged ‘planning’

Why $50,000 May Be the (New) Happiness Tipping Point

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on April 22, 2012


Illustration by Alexander Ho for TIME


A landmark 2010 Princeton University study showed that money really can buy happiness — up to a very specific point. The researchers (including Nobelist Daniel Kahneman) found that up to about $75,000, annual income closely correlates with emotional well-being. Beyond that threshold, however, more income doesn’t translate into more happiness. On average, an American earning $575,000 isn’t likely to be any happier than one making $75,000.

Well, forget $75,000. A new poll by the Marist Institute for Public Opinion suggests that as little as $50,000 brings genuine happiness. According to the survey, those below $50K weren’t as personally satisfied with their lives as those above that mark in areas such as one’s housing situation, personal relationships and overall direction in life.

(MORE: Is a Busy Retiree a Happy Retiree?) Read the rest of this entry »

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Another Green Shoot: Millionaire Households Rising

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on March 22, 2012

Millionaire households in the U.S. are rising again, largely because the mass affluent stayed the course with their stocks during the downturn and are reaping the benefits of the market’s recovery. But frugality also played a big role.
Getty Images


Plenty of questions linger about the economic recovery. But along with a mildly improving housing market and jobs picture, add this to the list of economic green shoots signaling better times: the U.S. is minting millionaires again.

The number of millionaire households rose for the third consecutive year in 2011, according to a report from Spectrem Group. The U.S. now has 8.6 million households with a net worth of at least $1 million above and beyond any equity in a primary residence. That’s up from 6.7 million in 2008 but still shy of the 9.2 million millionaire households in 2007.

(MORE: Buying is Now Cheaper Than Renting 98% of the Time)

The wealth of the affluent is coming back at every threshold. According to Spectrem: Read the rest of this entry »

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Building Planning | Earthquake Resistant Buildings

Posted by Ram Kumar Shrestha on September 20, 2011

The behavior of building during earthquakes depends critically on its overall shape, size and geometry. Hence, at planning stage itself, architects and structural engineers must work together to ensure that the unfavorable features are avoided and a good building configuration is chosen. If both shape and structural system work together to make the structure a marvel.

“If we have a poor configuration to start with, all the engineer can do is to provide a band-aid – improve a basically poor solution as best as he can. Conversely, if we start-off with a good configuration and reasonable framing system, even a poor engineer cannot harm its ultimate performance too much”.

Size of Buildings

Size of BuildingsSize of Buildings

In tall buildings with large weight-to-base size ratio the horizontal movement of the floors during ground shaking is large. In short but very long buildings, the damaging effects during earthquake shaking are many. And, in buildings with large plan area, the horizontal seismic forces can be excessive to be carried by columns and walls.

Horizontal Layout of Buildings

Horizontal Layout of Buildings
Buildings with simple geometry in plan perform well during strong earthquakes. Buildings with re-entrant corners, like U, V, H and + shaped in plan sustain significant damage. The bad effects of these interior corners in the plan of buildings are avoided by making the buildings in two parts by using a separation joint at the junction. Read the rest of this entry »

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