Thursday, September 26, 2013

Who was Prophet Muhammad's Mother?

It has been widely reported in the media that the Al-Shabab terrorists that struck the Westgate Mall asked shoppers specific questions about Islam before deciding whether to mow them down. It is said that the questions were very specific and only a devout Muslim would have had the answers on their fingertips. One of the questions unfortunate shoppers were asked was the name of Prophet Muhammad's mother.

Prophet Muhammad's mother was Aminah bint Wahb. The entire family tree is as shown below.


Resources


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

How to Know if you have HIV

There are various early signs of HIV which can lead you to suspect that you are infected. These signs are medically referred to as Acute HIV Infection (Primary Infection) and will typically manifest 2 - 4 weeks after infection.The large majority of individuals will exhibit these symptoms but many people ignore them because the symptoms tend to be similar to a flu. 

Symptoms of Early HIV Infection

2-4 weeks after exposure to the HIV virus either through unprotected sex or other means, the large majority of individuals will come down with an illness that resembles a bad flu. Many people usually describe it as the  'worst cold you have ever had'. Typical (most common) symptoms include:

  • Fever
  • Lymphadenopathy (swollen/enlarged lymph nodes)
  • Pharyngitis (sore throat)
  • Rash
  • Myalgia (muscle pain)
  • Malaise (general weakness)
  • Mouth and esophageal (throat) sores
Less commonly, symptoms may also include:
  • Headache
  • Nausea and vomiting
  • Enlarged liver/spleen
  • Weight loss
  • Thrush (whitish patches in the mouth and throat caused by a fungus known as candida)
  • Neurological symptoms
According to the New England Journal of Medicine, these symptoms "may last from a few days to more than 10 weeks, but the duration is usually less than 14 days".

What to Do

If you have had unprotected sex or you have been exposed in some other way such as handling raw human blood or been pricked by an un-sterile hypodermic needle used on another person, you have good reason to suspect that you are HIV positive. You should immediately visit a medical facility and get tested. Tell the medical attendants about your likely exposure and the symptoms you are experiencing.

Benefits of Early HIV Detection

If you happen to be infected, there are benefits to early detection. A News report in the New Scientist Magazine on 20th March 2013 reported that Dr Asier Sáez-Cirión of the Pasteur Institute in Paris "analysed 70 people with HIV who had been treated with three antiretroviral drugs (ARVs) between 35 days and 10 weeks after infection. The analysis revealed that 14 patients – four women and 10 men – were able to stay off Anti Retrovirals without relapsing, after initially taking the drugs for about 3 years". 

Further,  according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, "early treatment of infected persons substantially reduces their risk of transmitting HIV to others".

Tips & Warnings

  • If you have had unprotected sex or been exposed in some way in the recent past, don't wait for symptoms to appear, go get tested.
  • Not everyone will experience the post exposure symptoms of early HIV infection. Some people may have all the symptoms, some may manifest only a few and others none at all. The best thing is to get tested if you have engaged in any risky behavior or have been exposed to the virus in any way.

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Wednesday, September 11, 2013

How to Pay Dstv Kenya Subscription Using Mpesa

In addition to several other payment options, it is possible to pay your DSTV Kenya subscription using Mpesa and Airtel Money.

Instructions

  1. To pay via Mpesa, go to your Mpesa menu and select ‘Pay Bill’ option. The Multichoice Kenya paybill number is 444900. Enter this number and in the screen that follows, enter your DSTV account number. Take note that your account number is not the same as your SmartCard number. Enter the payment amount, your PIN and submit. You should receive a confirmation text message. Multichoice Kenya updates Mpesa payments in their system every hour.
  2. To pay via Airtel Money, go to Zap menu and select ‘Money’ option. Select ‘Nick-name’ and type in ‘DStv’. Next, enter the payment amount, confirm the transaction and enter your Airtel Money password. Next, enter your DSTV account number in the ‘Reference Option’ field. Submit and wait for a confirmation text message. Multichoice Kenya updates Airtel Money payments in their system every hour.

Tips and Warnings

  • Be careful when typing in your account number. Confirm accuracy before submitting lest you make payment on someone else’s account.
  • You can also pay your DSTV Kenya subscription using Direct Debit from your bank account, credit/debit card, by cheque, via PostaPay or at the Customer Service Point at T-MALL Langata. You can also deposit the funds at any Equity Bank Branch or Standard Chartered bank ATM (if you are a StanChart customer)

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How to Get Cheap Samsung Phones (Galaxy S2, S3, Duos, Mini, Tab Etc) in Kenya

Given that Samsung is currently the world’s leading smartphone manufacturer with a reputation for designing highly creative and stylish phones that are quite pricey, getting cheap Samsung phones may sound like a mirage. However, with a bit of patience you can actually reduce the dent in your pocket and save yourself a few thousand bob when making a purchase.

Cheap Samsung Phones Dealers

  1. The only way to get a cheap Samsung phone is to avoid purchasing the same from a Kenyan dealer. This can be achieved by making an online purchase. Most Kenyan dealers purchase phones abroad, specifically Dubai and China. You can purchase your phone directly from a trader or manufacturer abroad.
  2. Visit any of the numerous online ecommerce websites such as Amazon.com or Newegg.com. You will need credit card or debit card to make online payments or a PayPal account. Find out how to get one in Kenya by reading our article on Paypal debit cards
  3. Browse the phone categories and make your selection. Perform a price comparison by checking the local websites of Kenyan phone dealers or browse olx.co.ke. Many of these international ecommerce sites also have excellent deals on used phones.
  4. Confirm that your selected product can be shipped to Kenya as not all items are shipped internationally.
  5. Check out, make payment and wait for your package to arrive via Posta or courier depending on your shipping choice upon checkout.
  6. In most cases, you should be able to track your package online. Once you confirm its arrival, visit Posta at Haile Selassie or the courier company (DHL, FedEx etc.) and collect your package.
  7. Expect to pay VAT tax of 16% upon collection since mobile phones are no longer zero-rated.

Tips & Warnings

  • Make sure the phone is an International version and unlocked otherwise it may not work in Kenya i.e. it will accept a sim card from any mobile carrier.
  • Opting for courier delivery is safer but it will also cost you much more. Amazon charges $39 for courier delivery and $6.99 for normal delivery via Posta.
Suggested Reading

PayPal to Mpesa

Resources


Newegg.com


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Tuesday, September 10, 2013

How to Buy Online at Amazon.com

Amazon.com is the world’s largest online marketplace where you can purchase a wide range of
products at prices much lower than you may find in the local Kenyan stores. A case in point is books, mobile phones, tablet computers, Amazon kindles and much more. For example, a book or textbook on Amazon would cost much less as compared to buying it in a Nairobi bookshop which has to adjust their prices to reflect running costs and markup. Unfortunately, many Kenyans do not take advantage of this fact mainly because they do not know how to make online purchases and have goods shipped to them in Kenya. Buying online on amazon.com, ebay.com or any other online marketplace is actually quite easy.

Instructions

  1. Visit Amazon style= and browse the category listing for the items you are looking to purchase. For example, if you are looking for a book, browse the ‘Books’ category or ‘computers’ if looking for a Tablet computer.
  2. Once you find the item you want, register an account and log in.
  3. Select the item you want to purchase and check out. You will need a credit/debit card to make payment. This is the point that most ordinary Kenyans find difficult. To find out how to get a credit/debit card to make online payments or to use your existing credit/debit card, read this article.
  4. Enter your shipping address. This can be your PO Box address. The items are delivered to Posta by USPS (United States Postal Service) and you can pick them up at the Haile Selassie Post Office (near the railway station). If you want faster and more secure delivery, you can opt for courier delivery. This will, however, cost you more. At the time of writing this article, the standard Amazon shipping rate to Kenya was $6.99 per shipment and $39.99 for Priority Courier Shipping.  
  5. Important update: Amazon.com is no longer ships the majority of items to Kenya due to warranty issues and manufacturer restrictions. If an item you want can't ship to Kenya, you will need a US Shipping address. There are a number of companies in the US that can provide you with a US Shipping address for a small fee.  You will add this as a Shipping address in your Amazon account. Amazon will then send the item to that address and the item will be couriered to you in Kenya. To get a US billing address, try MyUS or Shipito. They both offer US shipping addresses at very fair terms. 

Tips and Warnings


Take note that unless the item you are importing is zero-rated, you will be required to pay tax upon collection. Find out your tax liability by visiting the KRA website

Resources
Amazon.com Global Export Countries

Suggested Reading
How to buy on Ebay in Kenya

How to Prepare for a Job Interview


Have you been invited for and need to prepare for a job interview? Nothing strikes fear into the hearts of ordinary job seekers as the prospect of having to submit to a panel of people who will ask tough questions regarding your suitability to work for the organization. This fear is understandable, as humans we are not naturally wired for scrutiny; the average human being will avoid the spotlight unless absolutely necessary. However, the fact of the matter is that a job interview need not vex you if you stick to a few simple rules.  

Instructions to Prepare for a job interview


  1. The first rule about preparing for an interview is to PREPARE. You can never be too prepared for an interview. Anticipate the questions you will be asked and look for someone to help you role play – a mock interview to ensure you have all the answers at your fingertips. Research widely on the company and industry – make sure your industry and technical knowledge is up to date. If you need to refresh your technical knowledge, read as much as possible prior to the interview.
  2. All of us have that one dreaded question that we hope and pray the panel will not ask. ‘Talk to yourself’ ...honestly... and find out what your dreaded question is; write it down and think of a good answer for it. Do not go into an interview with your fingers crossed hoping that the panel will not venture into this territory. You should also write down a list of your strengths and weaknesses. Be clear on how you will articulate each.
  3. In the days leading up to the interview, use NLP (Neuro Linguistic Programming) techniques to get yourself into the right mood. Visualize yourself as calm, poised and confident. Practice deep breathing on a regular basis and repeat soothing words like ‘I am relaxed’ to prepare yourself mentally. 
  4. Set your alarm to wake you several hours before the scheduled interview time. Dress impeccably (industry standards) and make sure you smell nice. A simple dash of cologne, perfume for ladies or an underarm deodorant will be good enough. Do not overdo it. Get to the interview location at least 30 minutes before your scheduled time. This creates a good impression. 

Tips & Warnings


  • Psychologists and career experts agree that it is always best to focus on the positive. Do not think of negative outcomes.


Suggested Reading
How to Interview a prospective employee