Tuesday, October 27, 2020

How to Study Faster

Are you in secondary school, college, doing a master's degree or simply studying for a course while working? Whatever the case may be, you can benefit from learning how to study faster. Thanks to technological advancements, there are now numerous applications to help you revise faster and cope with day-to-day tasks.

The following are five apps that will help you study faster.

iStudiez Pro

This application helps you create reminders and notifications for upcoming examinations while also improving your study methods. It is compatible with Mac, iPad, iPhone and iPod touch. With this app, you can create colorful schedules and visualize all the information you need to prioritize.

The pro version is available on iTunes for $2.99. You can use any Internet enabled Kenyan debit or credit card to buy it online. iStudiez Lite is free but places a limit on the number of classes you can manage. To use the app effectively, plug your class schedule into the application and follow the instructions to finalize setup.


Evernote is a versatile application that has a wide range of uses. One of these is study and exam preparation. It can make a student's life a lot easier by storing study notes, research and other material such as online resources in one place. Take notes with it while listening to a lecture and sync across all your devices so that you can study on the go.  The application is easy to setup and use. It is free on iOS and Android devices. The premium version costs only $5 monthly or $45 per year.

Dictionary.com Mobile

Every student knows the value of a dictionary to look-up terms and improve vocabulary. The dictionary.com mobile application puts 2 million definitions at your fingertips. It also comes with a huge database of synonyms and antonyms. If there is something you didn't understand from your last class session, just download this app from iTunes or the Google Play Store and install it your phone.

Exam Time

This application allows you to create mind maps, flash cards and quizzes online for free. With ExamTime.com, you can create, store and access your study content from one place. This brings organization and focus into your study method. The application is still in beta so many more improvements are expected in the future but so far it has proven to be a really useful app. Stay synced with your study groups, planner, calendar in addition to many other features.


Finally, any discussion about study apps would be incomplete without making mention of Blackboard. This is the most widely used app by universities around the world. It is recommended by many professors and schools. The only requirement for you to use this is that your teacher should also be using it. Some private universities in Kenya are using the app, just check with your institution and lecturer. It is compatible with Android, iOS and Blackberry. Blackboard allows you online access to all your coursework, grades and schedules posted by your instructor. Once you convince your school to start using it, all you need to do is head over to iTunes or Google Play and download it.

Study Drugs
If you suffer from conditions such as ADHD (Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder), long hours of study may be a problem for you. ADHD sufferers typically suffer attention problems which include daydreaming, difficulty focusing and being easily distracted. Hyperactivity is manifested through fidgeting or restlessness. If you suspect you have ADHD, you should consult a doctor and they can prescribe a drug known as Adderall which will help you focus better.


iStudiez Pro


Dictionary Mobile

Exam Time


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Why Study in Australia?

As a recent KCSE graduate, there are many universities and college options both locally and abroad. Kenyan students are increasingly looking to study in Australia and with good reasons.

Why Study in Australia?

There a number of reasons Kenyan students are choosing to study in Australia. These include:

  1. Despite having a population of only 23 million, it is the 3rd most popular destination for undergraduate students.
  2. There are over 22,000 courses available in over 1,100 institutions.
  3. 8 out of the top 100 universities globally are in Australia.
  4. 5 out of 30 of the best student cities are located in Australia.
  5. According to Universitas global ranking of higher education systems, Australia ranks 9th globally ahead of countries such as Germany, Netherlands, and Japan. Universitas is the leading global network of research-intensive universities.
  6. The Australian government invests $200 million in international scholarships annually.
  7. Australian universities feature in the top 50 ranked universities globally in the following areas of study; arts and humanities, clinical and pre-clinical health, engineering and technology, life sciences, physical sciences, and social sciences.
  8. Australian universities have produced 15 Nobel prize laureates.
  9. Over 1 billion people globally rely on Australian discoveries and innovations. These include; penicillin, in-vitro fertilization, ultrasound, wi-fi, bionic ear, cervical cancer vaccine, the aviation black box and many others.
Find out how much it costs to study in Australia.

Further Reading
Australian Government Site

3 Must Read Books by Kenyan Authors

Though we constantly vilify ourselves for being a nation that reads until university and then after that, read if and only when the situation demands, Kenya has a rich oral and literary history.
Here’s a look at three Kenyan literary master classes, you shouldn’t go another day without reading:

The Wizard of the Crow by Ngugi Wa Thiongo

A book that seems particularly apt given Kenya’s present struggles with grand corruption. Cutting, and full of farcical mockery of the leaders of a fictional African State, Aburiria. It’s also laugh-out-loud funny.

One Day I Will Write About This Place by Binyavanga Wainaina

Being on Oprah’s bookshelf alone should get your fingers twitching to get hold of this book. A broad, ambitious project straddling the writer’s youthful years across Kenya, Uganda, and South Africa. A Kenyan contemporary classic.

Coming to Birth by Marjorie Oludhe Macgoye

Macgoye, who came to Kenya from England in 1954 passed away last year. But she left us with perhaps her greatest literally work in, Coming to Birth - published in 1986. A unique, heartfelt story that interweaves a young girl’s attempts at finding her way in a country that is itself just in its infancy.

Thursday, September 24, 2020

List of Prefabricated Housing Manufacturers

Prefabricated construction is the surest way to cut down on construction costs significantly. The following is a list of prefabricated housing companies in Kenya.

Name Contact Details
Hong Kong Building Centre (HKBC)

Mombasa Rd Opposite Sameer Business Park, Between Lab & Allied and Plaza 2000 Nairobi, Kenya. Tel: 020-2617700 Mobile: 0722-837999, 0787-888444, 0787-888555 Website: www.hkbckenya.com E-mail: info@hkbckenya.com

Eco Homes Ltd

"Muthaiga North Parkside Estate House no 68. Parkside estate is along Coffee Garden Drive (Rock City Stage), off Kiambu road, after CID headquarters and sharks palace. Tel 020 359 1988 / 020 353 5709

Koto Housing Kenya

Koto House (Formerly the People Printing House), Mombasa Road (Mlolongo, Machakos County), Kenya. +254 789 80 89 91 +254 772 12 44 08. info@kotohousingkenya.co.ke  

Economic Housing Group Ltd

Before Ngong Racecourse Along Ngong Road Nairobi, Kenya Tel; +254722525097 254733213103 Email: sales@ehgkenya.com

Zenithsteel Ltd

P.O. Box 18314- 00500 Nairobi, Kenya Enterprise Road, Industrial Area, P: +254-20-555281, 551874/5

National Housing Corporation Kenya

NHC House, Aga Khan Walk P.O Box 30257-00100 Nairobi - Kenya Email: info@nhckenya.co.ke     Tel: +254 (020) 3312 149


DMS Africa Ltd.  P.O Box 10625-00100 GPO  PEARL VILLAS  Musa Gitau Road, off Waiyaki Way,(behind Deloitte) Lavington Estate Nairobi-Kenya sales@dms-africa.com Mobile +254 (0) 718 174 154

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List of Public Libraries

Public libraries in Kenya are operated by the Kenya National Library Service (KNLS), a state corporation established via an act of parliament in 1965. The library is currently operating 60 branches spread out across Kenya.

The following is the list of public libraries operating in each of the 47 counties of Kenya.

No. County No. of Public Libraries Location
1 Baringo 2 Kabarnet, Meisori
2 Bomet 1 Silibwet
3 Bungoma 1 Kimilili
4 Busia None
5 Elgeyo/Marakwet 1 Lagam
6 Embu 1 Embu
7 Garissa 3 Garissa, Mbalambala, Masalani
8 Homa Bay None -
9 Isiolo 1 Isiolo
10 Kajiado None -
11 Kakamega 2 Kakamega, Lusumu
12 Kericho 1 Kericho
13 Kiambu 1 Thika
14 Kilifi 3 Kilifi, Dzitsoni, Malindi
15 Kirinyaga None -
16 Kisii 1 Kisii
17 Kisumu 2 Kisumu, Koru (Dr. Robert Ouko Memorial Library)
18 Kitui 1 Mwingi
19 Kwale 1 Kwale (Ukunda)
20 Laikipia 2 Nanyuki, Rumuruti
21 Lamu None -
22 Machakos None -
23 Makueni 3 Mutyambua, Kinyambu, Kithasyu
24 Mandera 1 Mandera
25 Marsabit 1 Moyale
26 Meru 3 Meru, Mikumbune, Timau
27 Migori 1 Awendo
28 Mombasa 1 Mombasa
29 Murang'a 2 Murang'a, Kangema
30 Nairobi 3 Nairobi Area, Buruburu, Kibera
31 Nakuru 3 Nakuru, Naivasha, Gilgil
32 Nandi 1 Kapsabet
33 Narok 2 Narok, Lelechonik
34 Nyamira None
35 Nyandarua 1 Ol Kalou
36 Nyeri 4 Nyeri, Munyu, Chinga, Karatina
37 Samburu None -
38 Siaya 3 Nyilima, Rambula, Ukwala
39 Taita Taveta 2 Wundanyi, Werugha (Mary Patch Turnbull Memorial Library)
40 Tana River None
41 Tharaka Nithi None -
42 Trans Nzoia None -
43 Turkana None
44 Uasin Gishu 1 Eldoret
45 Vihiga None -
46 Wajir 5 Wajir, Griftu, Habasweni, Tarbaj, Bute
47 West Pokot None -

Kenya National Library Services

Monday, September 21, 2020

How to Buy Treasury Bonds via Mpesa #MAkiba

The Kenyan Government recently launched a mobile-based treasury bonds auction platform dubbed M-Akiba. Through M-Akiba, you can now invest in the Kenyan Government Infrastructure bond where the government is looking to raise Kes 5 Billion and other subsequent treasury bonds for as little as Kes 3,000. This is a big departure from the traditional system that has locked out many people who could afford the high minimum investment amounts required.

Investing in treasury bonds offers greater returns compared to savings accounts such as M-Shwari and fixed deposit accounts. Investors will be paid interest twice a year. According to The Treasury, at a 10 per cent M-Akiba Interest rate, an investment of Kes 10,000 is set to give investors a return of Kes 500 every six months or 1,000 annually. At the end of the bond's three year maturity period, investors will get their original investment back.

The current bond is an infrastructure bond hence, interest payments to investors are tax-free.

When the bond matures, the principal amount you invested and the interest earned will be paid to you via Mpesa or Airtel Money.

How to Use M-Akiba

  • Dial *889# from a Safaricom or Airtel line. These are the only two mobile operators participating at the moment. 
  • Follow the prompts. 

Tips & Warnings

  • Registration, trading, and settlement will be done through your mobile phone. There will be no physical documentation for CDS accounts. 
  • If you miss out on the bond in the primary issue you the option of buying it in the secondary market at the Nairobi Stock Exchange. But, market forces will determine the purchase of the bond in the secondary market.

Suggested Reading

How to open a CDS account


The National Treasury

You Won't Believe How this Empire Star Looks now #ThisBody

Gabourey Sidibe is best known for playing “Precious” in the hit series "Empire". She has been known for being a large woman and once told Oprah that her first diet started when she was six-years-old.
One thing about Gabby, is that she isn't ashamed of her body.

Recently, she embarked on a weight loss that has seen her shed several pounds. The changes are most noticeable on her face which looks considerably thinner. Below are some photos she posted on Instagram.

She also recently posed in a sheer shirt and sexy bra for Lane Bryant’s latest fashion campaign, #ThisBody campaign.

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How to Make Chicken Feed

Chicken feed has become very expensive and the only way to make a decent return from rearing chicken for meat or eggs is to make to your own chicken feed. In fact, many Kenyan animal feeds manufacturers make sub-standard feeds so from whatever angle you look at it, you are better making your own chicken feed.

The Nation Newspaper recently ran an interesting piece that explained how a farmer could go about making their own chicken feed. If you missed it, here is an extract of the salient points below.

By Nation Seeds of Gold

To formulate feeds, farmers have to use the Pearson Square method. In this method, the digestible crude protein (DCP) is the basic nutritional requirement for any feed preparation for all animals and birds.

Now, assuming that a farmer wants to make feed for their chicken using this method, they have to know the crude protein content of each of the ingredients they want to use to make their feed.

The following are the DCP values for each of the common ingredients used in feed making:

  • Whole maize — 8.23%
  • Soya — 45%
  • Fishmeal (omena) — 55%
  • Maize bran — 7%
  • Sunflower — 35%

Each category of chicken has its nutritional requirement. For example, if we want to make feed for layers, the feed should have at least 18 percent crude protein.

If one was to formulate feed for layers, then they would have to calculate the percentage of DCP in each of the ingredients they want to use to ensure that the total crude protein content is at least 18 percent.

Therefore, to make a 70kg bag of feed for layers, a farmer would require the following ingredients:

  • 34kg of whole maize
  • 12kg of soya
  • 8kg of omena (fishmeal)
  • 10kg of maize bran
  • 6kg of lime (as a calcium source)

To find out if all the above ingredients meet this standard of 18% crude protein, a farmer can do a simple calculation as follows:

  • Whole maize — 34kg x 8.23 ÷100 = 2.80 %
  • Soya — 12kg x 45kg ÷ 100 = 5.40 %
  • Omena — 8 kg x 55kg ÷ 100 = 4.40 %
  • Lime — 6 kg x 0 kg ÷ 100 = 0.00%
  • Total % of crude protein = 13.30%

To get the total crude protein percentage of all these ingredients in a 70kg bag of feed, the farmer should take this crude protein content of the combined ingredients, divide by 70kg and multiply by 100, thus — 13.30 ÷70 ×100 = 19%; this shows that the crude protein content of the above feed formulation is 19%, which is quite adequate for layers.

To ensure the chicken to get all they need in terms of nutrients such as vitamins, minerals and amino acids, you need these additives in their standard quantities.

In order to make it even simpler for farmers who would wish to make their own feeds, below are feed formulations for each category of chickens and stage of growth already worked out such that all the farmer needs is to buy the ingredients and mix them:

How to Make a 70 kg Bag of Layers Chick Mash (1-4 weeks)

Growing chicks require feed with Digestible Crude Protein (DCP) of between 18 to 20 percent. The following formulation can be used to make a 70kg bag of layers chick mash:


  • 31.5kg of whole maize
  • 9.1kg of wheat bran
  • 7.0kg of wheat pollard
  • 16.8 kg of sunflower (or 16.8 kg of linseed)
  • 1.5kg of fishmeal
  • 1.75kg of lime
  • 30g of salt
  • 20g of premix Amino acids
  • 70g of tryptophan
  • 3.0g of lysine
  • 10g of methionine
  • 70 g of Threonine
  • 50g of enzymes
  • 60g of coccidiostat
  • 50g of toxin binder
  • Making a 70 kg bag of growers mash (4 to 8 weeks)

Growers (pullets or young layers) should be provided with feed having a protein content of between 16 and 18 percent. Such feed makes the young layers to grow fast in preparation for egg laying:

  • 10kg of whole maize
  • 17kg of maize germ
  • 13kg of wheat pollard
  • 10kg of wheat bran
  • 6kg of cotton seed cake
  • 5kg of sunflower cake
  • 3.4kg of soya meal
  • 2.07kg of lime
  • 700g of bone meal
  • 3kg of fishmeal

  • 14g of salt
  • 1g of coccidiostat
  • 18g of Pre-mix
  • 1g of zinc bacitracitrach
  • 7g of mycotoxin binder

How to Make a 70 kg Bag of Layers’ Mash (18 weeks and above)


  • 34kg of whole maize
  • 12kg of Soya
  • 8kg of fishmeal
  • 10kg of maize bran, rice germ or wheat bran
  • 6kg of lime
  • Amino acids
  • 175g premix
  • 70g lysine
  • 35g methionine
  • 70kg Threonine
  • 35g tryptophan
  • 50g toxin binder
Layer feed should contain a Digestible Crude Protein (DCP) content of between 16-18 per cent.

The feed should contain calcium (lime) for the formation of eggshells (laying hens that do not get enough calcium will use the calcium stored in their own born tissue to produce eggshells).

Layer feed should be introduced at 18 weeks.

How to Make a 70 kg Bag of Broiler Feed

Broilers have different feed requirements in terms of energy, proteins and minerals during different stages of their growth. It is important that farmers adapt feed rations to these requirements for maximum production.

Young broilers have a high protein requirement for the development of muscles, feathers, etc. As the broilers grow, their energy requirements for the deposit of fat increase and their protein requirements decrease.

They therefore require high protein content in their starter rations than in the grower and finisher rations.

Broilers should have feed that has between 22 -24 percent DCP. The following guidelines can help the farmer to make the right feed at each stage of growth:

Broiler Starter Feed (1-4 weeks)

  • 40kg of whole maize
  • 12kg of fishmeal (or omena)
  • 14kg of soya bean meal
  • 4kg of lime
  • 70g of premix
  • Amino acids
  • 35g of lysine
  • 35g of Threonine

Preparing Broiler Finisher feed (70kg)

  • 10kg of whole maize
  • 16.7kg of maize germ
  • 13.3kg of wheat pollard
  • 10 kg wheat bran
  • 6 kg of cotton seed cake
  • 4.7kg of sunflower cake
  • 3kg of fishmeal 2kg of lime
  • 3.4kg of soya meal
  • 40g of bone meal
  • 10g of grower PMX
  • 5g of salt
  • 5g of coccidiostat
  • 5g of Zincbacitrach
NOTE: For farmers who have more than 500 chickens, it is advisable to make 1 ton of feed at once (There are 14 bags of feed in one ton).

Therefore, to make 1 tonne of feed, all a farmer needs is to multiply each of the ingredients by 14. Ensure that all the feed you make will last for one month and not longer — this ensures the feed remains fresh and safe for chickens. Any feed that lasts more than one month may deteriorate in quality and can affect your chickens.

Daily Feed Requirements for each Growth Stage

Farmers should maintain the right feed quantities for chicken at each stage of growth as shown below:

— An egg-laying chicken requires 130-140g of feed per day.

— A chick requires a minimum 60g per day. If they finish their daily rations, give them fruit and vegetable cuttings to ensure they feed continuously.

— Young chickens (or pullets) which are about to start laying eggs should be fed 60g for 2 and ½ months and then put on layer diet (140g per day). Supplement the feed with vegetables, edible plant leaves and fruit peelings in addition to their feed rations.

— Broiler chicks require 67g per day. Broiler finishers require 67g of feed per day to the day of slaughter.

— Chickens are very sensitive to aflatoxins- never use rotten maize (maozo) while making feeds.

Where to buy ingredients

Farmers who need raw materials for feed making including feed additives (pre-mixes and amino acids) can order them from agro-veterinary shops nearest to them.

There are also companies doing calibration services for farmers who wish to make feeds in large scale farming enterprises and even for any farmer who requires these services.

How to Receive Mpesa Payments on a Website

M-pesa is now used by millions of people in Kenya. If you run a website or e-commerce store, it makes sense to integrate M-pesa payments on your website. There are several ways to achieve and this article examines two of the most popular methods currently available.

Method 1 - Apply for a Lipa Na Mpesa Till Number

This is the easiest way to request receive M-pesa payments on a website. It doesn't require any technical know-how. All you need to do is apply for an M-pesa Till Number from a Safaricom Dealer near you and then publish the Till Number on your website. When online buyers are "checking out" they complete an online form and then make payment. You then crosscheck the mobile number and M-pesa name, with the name and number they use to register on your website to verify the purchase.

The only drawback with this method is that it isn't automated. If you are selling digital goods, this is a cumbersome process that can actually damage your brand.

Method 2 - Use an M-pesa Payment Gateway

Depending on the Content Management System you use on your website, a payment gateway can be very easy or quite difficult to set up. There are several straightforward payment gateway plugins that run on WordPress. This method is, therefore, strictly for WordPress websites.

The suitability of the plugin will depend on the WordPress theme you are running. You may need to undertake some trial and error before you settle on an appropriate plugin for your WordPress Setup. Check out the pages below for more information.

Tips & Warnings
There are other more technical methods to get it done but unless you are a techie, we recommend these two methods. If they don't work for you, hire an expert to set up M-pesa payments on your website.

Infographic: Ten Equations that Changed the World