My Thoughts on Technology and Jamaica: July 2017

Sunday, July 30, 2017

How Jamaica Producers plans to export Breadfruit Flour and Chips to US, Canada in August 2017

Banana shortage is apparently not a problem for JP (Jamaica Producers).

They've begun to lay plans to make products from local fruit for export, including Breadfruit as noted in “Breadfruit Snack Heading Overseas - JP Starts Shipping In August, Others Ramp Up Fruit Production”, published Sunday July 23, 2017 by Avia Collinder, The Jamaica Gleaner

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They’ve' developed a plan to quadruple the crops produced on their farms in Agualta Vale, St Mary from 210 hectares to 420 hectares by 2019. Managing Director of Jamaica Producers Group Jeffery Hall says JP would be exporting breadfruit chips by August 2017, as there is a global increase in demand for the fruit as pointed out in my blog article entitled “How RADA's National Fruit-Tree Crop Project benefits Breadfruit Farmers, Red Stripe and GOJ”. 

JP plans to use the USA as a test market, with the UK coming on stream next year to quote Jeffery Hall: "We are particularly pleased to report that we will begin exporting the product to the USA for the first time in August". Breadfruit is among several fruits and vegetables which will be used to make VA (Value Added Products) include:

1.      Bananas
2.      Cassava
3.      Potato varieties
4.      Breadfruit
5.      Pineapple

JP already makes and distributes several types of chips which are sold in local and foreign markets:

1.      Banana
2.      Cassava
3.      Plantain

Breadfruit as a snack option would not be new or even a surprise to many Jamaicans, as it tastes great when fried and goes well with anything else. But mass production might be a problem, as it takes three (3) years from planting to bear fruits unlike Banana chips which is made from excess banana as noted in my  blog article entitled “How Banana Shortage in Jamaica indicates Bananas extinct in Caribbean by 2020”.

Realizing this, JP has locked in contracts with farmers to supply the fruit, hinting at local price increases in the future as farmers may sell what they have to JP in preference to selling it in the market. But why breadfruit?

JP and Breadfruit – Breadfruit Chips popular but Flour the real money maker

Breadfruit, a cheaply grown Jamaican staple, has byproducts that are gluten-free. This means that the flour produced by Breadfruit may find favour with the health-conscious market in the United States and Canada

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But it may be the flour that carries the highest value, with an almost 500% value added boost once processes into a flour to quote Michael McLaughlin of the TFFF (Trees That Feed Foundation): “The wholesale price is only US$0.50 to US$0.80 per fruit weighing an average of four pounds. The local price for processed breadfruit is US$3-US$5 per pound. The math shows a value add of at least 500 per cent, which is more than enough to cover the costs of production and distribution”.

Currently the demand for flour made from breadfruit is around 300,000 tonnes per month. Good to note that JP has already been selling breadfruit chips solely to Jamaicans for the past six (6) years.

However, come August 2017, they'll be testing out the North American market, now more health conscious than before and looking for sugar free snack options as noted in my MICO Wars blog article entitled “How Gracekennedy Aloe Vera Sinkle Bibles American Health Drinks in 2016”.

 In 2016, JP made some US$12 billion in revenue; their food and drink operations contributed $8 billion with their snacks division contributing some 12% of total revenue. With some 93 million people consuming breadfruit, an a potential demand of 150 million in markets as-yet tapped by JP and other producers, the sky is the limit as to how much breadfruit as a snack and a healthy eating option can bring in for the company.

So says Managing Director of Jamaica Producers Group Jeffery Hall, quote: “The opportunities for breadfruit are meaningful. The demand exceeds supply. We hope to grow breadfruit exports to 10 per cent of the snack business by this time next year”. 

To this end JP is working with farmers to boost production, as they have everything set including new packaging come September 2017 to quote Mr Hall:  “JP is a leading producer of breadfruit chips. Our demand for this product is very strong and as such we are actively promoting cultivation of the crop and are working with farmers and engaging other interests, including Trees That Feed Foundation. In line with the significant growth potential for this product, we are launching a brand new package in September”.

Breadfruit may be the new Banana chips enjoyed by Americans and the Brits, if JP's plans succeed.

Saturday, July 29, 2017

How to refill Canon Pixma MG2522 Printer Black and Colour Cartridges

So you have a Canon Pixma MG2522 Printer and the ink has run out. Before you run out and buy some ink, why not refill it yourself and save JA$4000?

First, purchase the ink replacement kit on Amazon such as the InkPro Premium Combo Ink Refill Kit for Canon PG-240/CL-241, PG-240XL/CL-241XL by Hyrax Trading Co

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The kit will come with four sets of inks:

1.      Black
2.      Cyan (Blue)
3.      Magenta (Red)
4.      Yellow

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It will also be packing some syringes. Careful not to get them mixed up or you'll have to really buy a new ink cartridge!!

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The rest is self-explanatory as can be seen in these videos. First the Refill procedure for the Canon Pixma MG2522 Black Ink

Please note that you only need 5ml of Black ink to refill this cartridge.

Also, you can actually drill a hole on the underside of the Black ink Cartridge; just make sure to seal it with cellophane tape and leave it upside down for about an hour.

Then the Refill procedure for the Canon Pixma MG2522 Colour Ink

Note that the order of the inkwell holes from left to right is Cyan, Magenta then Yellow. Also, you only need about 2ml on the syringe per refill. Also the alcohol inkpads are not sufficient enough; you'll need some acetone and some newspaper to avoid making a mess.

Sharing is caring so share these helpful videos with your friends!!!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

How Jamaicans can Network Unlock the Apple iPhone 7 Plus and older versions

The Apple iPhone 7 and 7 plus are the latest iteration of Apple' successful smartphone brand.

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Alas, they are expensive smartphone, often being locked to a specific Network, a troubling problem as you might want to use it on another network.

Relatives importing them may notice that they have to get them Network unlocked for as high as $12,500 or use an RSIM, a SIM replacement over their originals sim costing $6500.

So is there a way to unlock the Apple iPhone 7 Plus and older versions for free using software?
Fortunately there is….and all it requires is patience.

How to unlock the Apple iPhone – Patience truly is a virtue

There are 2 procedures that I've successfully tested:

1.      # Key method
2.      1 Key method
3.      Apple Server Method

Before you begin make sure you have a VPN Set up so that it makes you appear as if you are in the United Kingdom as noted in my MICO Wars Blog article entitled “How Jamaicans can find reliable free VPN to work anonymously online”.

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First is the # Key method, which simply requires that you continuously press the # for 30 minutes. This method works on all smartphones include the Apple iPhone 7 Plus. I've tested it myself and it does indeed work.

The next method is aptly called the 1 Key method and work best for an out-of-the-box iPhone. At the very beginning where you choose languages, you double press the Home key until you get Emergency Call.

Then you select start again and press the Home key once. Then select the Emergency call and continuously press the 1 key for 15 minutes.

This method works exclusively on the Apple iPhone 6s and 6S Plus and older...not so sure about the Apple iPhone 7 Plus.....but you can always try and tell me how that goes.

Finally there is the Apple Server Method.

That's it! Sharing is caring so share this with all of your friends!

Thursday, July 13, 2017

How Pittsburgh and Temple University used CRISPR-Cas9 to eliminate HIV-1 in Mice

“The next stage would be to repeat the study in primates, a more suitable animal model where HIV infection induces disease, in order to further demonstrate elimination of HIV-1 DNA in latently infected T cells and other sanctuary sites for HIV-1, including brain cells. Our eventual goal is a clinical trial in human patients.”

Comment by co-author of the study Dr. Khalili on using CRISPR-Cas9 to stop HIV from replicating

Infections from the HIV (human immunodeficiency virus) may soon be a thing of the past.

This as scientists from University of Pittsburgh and Temple University's Lewis Katz School of Medicine have developed a technique to remove the virus that casues AIDS (acquired immune deficiency syndrome) using CRISPR-Cas9 as declared in the article “Scientists can eliminate HIV infection in mice using CRISPR”, published May 03, 2017 by Marcia Galluci, Mashable.

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First published in the journal Molecular Therapy under the title In Vivo Excision of HIV-1 Provirus by saCas9 and Multiplex Single-Guide RNAs in Animal Models, the team demonstrated that they were able to completely remove all traces of the HIV virus within mouse organs and tissue.
But stopping a virus in its track is a huge breakthrough and opens up the possibility of using CRISPR-Cas9 against every disease known to man.

University of Pittsburgh and Temple University and CRISPR-Cas9 -  Stopping HIV-1 from reproducing

CRISPR-Cas9 (Clustered regularly interspaced short palindromic repeats) has already being used by researchers to do some remarkable things.

It already had shown great potential in eliminating Congenital disease in humans as noted in my blog article entitled “Netherland's Plan to create Artificial Wombs, improve invitro-fertilization and eradicate Genetic Diseases”.  

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Currently suffers from the symptoms of HIV have to take toxic concoction of antiretroviral medications to suppress the virus from replicating. The researcher, however, demonstrated that it was possible to use CRISPR-Cas9 to remove the HIV-1 DNA from the genetic code from infected cells, effectively stopping the virus from replicating.

What the team did was genetically inactivated HIV-1 in the mice, by stopping RNA, the genetic messenger that relaying the toxic information, from expressing its viral genes by 60% to 95%.

So how did they do it?

CRISPR-Cas9 used to stop HIV - First Mice next humans

The scientists used their CRISPR-Cas9 tool in three (3) scientific models

They used it on genetically modified "transgenic" mice in which they introduced inactivated the HIV-1 virus by reducing the RNA expression of viral genes. This means the RNA in the HIV-1 virus could not reproduce as it couldn't relay its viral code

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The other two (2) models were mice that had been engrafted with human immune cells, including T cells, making them the closest thing to a human model possible. Finally a third batch of mice were infected with a latent HIV-1 that would have minimal effect on the mice, with the virus lying dormant in their cells.

Using CRISPR/Cas9, researchers were able to block replication of the virus. They demonstrated that they could potentially prevent systemic infection, affairs in the medical field. they also successfully removed viral fragments of the infected human cells embedded in mouse tissues and organs.

Human trial may take years, especially as  HIV-1 virus can hide in the the Immune system and the brain as pointed out by Dr. Khalili, quote: "a more suitable animal model where HIV infection induces disease, in order to further demonstrate elimination of HIV-1 DNA in latently infected T cells and other sanctuary sites for HIV-1, including brain cells. Our eventual goal is a clinical trial in human patients.”

Human trials might take years to conduct, with primate being the first human-like test subjects. if they are successful, we may not need a cure for HIV; we may make ourselves immune by disable the HIV-1 virus from being able to replicate in the first place.

Wednesday, July 5, 2017

Drone Adventures Ltd to sell DJI Drones in Jamaica

Drone Adventures Ltd is pleased to announce their new showroom in Montego Bay is open.

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) also referred to as ‘Drones’ is the latest technology that brings enormous benefits to Jamaicans as well as private/corporate enterprises and government entities.
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Located on the ‘Hip-Strip’ in Montego Bay at 31 Gloucester Avenue, also known as Bottom Rd, Drone Adventures will is open 7 days a week from 10:00 AM to 7:00 PM Monday through Saturday and Sunday Noon until 5:00 PM. Clients may also schedule an appointment for before or after hours.

Drones combine the pleasure and enjoyment of model aviation with aerial photography for the individual as well as performing multiple roles for the private sector including surveying, crop management & spraying, security to just name a few.

Drone Adventures - Selling, Renting, Repairing and Training UAV Pilots

Drone Adventures will not only be selling drones they will also provide flight training, service & repairs, rentals and contract services within many sectors.

“We have aerial drones for the entry level consumer as well as professional aerial platforms used by film makers and movie studios,” says Communication Manager, Reta Johnson. “Our industrial drones are geared towards agriculture, farming, fishing, construction, security and national defense.”

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“All of our prosumer and commercial/professional drones come with 1 hour Free Training to insure the owner has an understanding of the JCAA regulations, flight safety and technology.
Our staff has more than 55 years’ experience in model aviation, including fixed wing, helicopter and drones,” Johnson states, “our training is geared to the first-time owner/pilot as well as the more experienced model aviator.”

Drone Adventures and DJI - Partnership to promote Quality UAV's in Jamaica

 “DJI is the recognized world leader in drone technology and we are Jamaica’s authorized dealer for DJI products as well as several other manufacturers,” Johnson continues. “We have also partnered with the leading consumer warranty provider in the United States to offer Extended
Warranties and Service on drone purchases. This provides the owner with piece of mind in the event of a crash, malfunfunction or unforeseen accident with no questions asked. Best of all it will be repaired or replaced here without it being sent back to the manufacture or somewhere off the island.”

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Drone Adventures will also be offering 3D Printer technology. A process used to create a three-dimensional object in which layers of material are formed under computer control to create an object.

“We’ll soon be adding the latest in new drone technology as well, with Unmanned Underwater Vehicles or UUVs. This exciting new drone is capable of going to depths of up to 100 meters while taking photographs and video 4K video quality.” Johnson adds.

Tuesday, July 4, 2017

Drone Adventures in Jamaica lets you Escape the Ordinary

“You go on vacation and you’ve done the zip-lining, rafting, waterfalls, shopping, etc. so what’s new and exciting?  It’s time to Escape the Ordinary!”

Communication Director, Veronica Allen, commenting on Drone Adventures Ltd

Drone Adventures Ltd is preparing to launch the first ever drone vacation experience with their concept of “Escape the Ordinary”.

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Up until now drone enthusiasts and pilots have been confined to their local surroundings for flying and photo and video opportunities.  If going on vacation generally, the drone stays at home because the owner/pilot is unfamiliar with regulations and policies in the various countries as well as appropriate places to fly.

Drone Adventures is the solution for the vacationing drone enthusiast and those wanting to learn to fly as noted by Communication Director, Veronica Allen: “We offer a one day experience or up to 5 days of flying, learning and adventure. Our one day experience is geared to those on vacation or visiting and intrigued by drone flying.  It starts with a training session and ends with flying at one of our majestic drone parks.”

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The one day “Escape” Excursion is only $89 US and includes classroom, drone rental and transportation per attendee.  In addition; the attendee has no financial responsibility if the drone should crash or worse yet, decide to take its own vacation and fly-away.

Other packages offered are:

§  The 3 day Silver experiences
§  The 5 Day Platinum experience

Each package includes all transportation, classroom, day & night flying as well as a beachfront BBQ and Reggae music on the last night.  Each day has a flying outing at one of our select Drone Parks with breathtaking views accompanied by a non-flying “fun” activity. There’s options to rent a drone if you didn’t bring one, for hotel at discounted rates as well as non-drone related experiences for the spouse/partner who has no interest in drones/flying.

So who exactly is Drone Adventures Ltd and what do they do?

Drone Adventures Ltd - Escape the Ordinary

Drone Adventures Ltd is located on Bottom Rd between the Altamont West Hotel and The Event Place as pointed out by Veronica Allen, quote: “Headquartered in Montego Bay which well respected tourism rating company, Trip Advisor has ranked Jamaica as the number one Caribbean tourist destination in 2016 does have some of the world’s best scenery for photographers and videographers”.

Their hours are as follows:

§  Monday - Saturday 10am to 7pm
§  Sunday 12 - 5pm

They specialize in everything UAV related including:

§  Sales
§  Service
§  Repair
§  Parts
§  Rentals
§  Tours

They are the first and only Authorized DJI dealer and offer a free 90 day LayAway and are working on a payment plan for financing. In Jamaica, Drone Adventures Ltd have the following established divisions:

§  Retail/consumer division
§  Agricultural division
§  Government division
§  Private sector division
§  Film division

Their CEO, Shaun, founding member of the International Radio Control Helicopter Association (IRCHA) and its 2nd president, has more than 55 years of model aviation experience flying fixed-wing, rotary-wing and multi-rotor (drones).

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Truly, their staff is experience enough to bring the excitement of flying drones to Jamaica, as Veronica Allen points out: “Our staff has more than 50 years’ experience in model aviation, including fixed wing, helicopter and drones,” Allen states, “our program insures that everyone has an exciting experience and they get to keep all the photos and video they capture.”

When planning your next vacation, Escape the Ordinary and check out Drone Adventures. 

For additional information visit
Tel: 876-452-0834