How to chose a new TV?

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Choosing a new TV seems like a no-brainer. You take a) the one with the largest diagonal and b) within the available budget. But… There are also some other criteria that you should consider.

When you add criteria like that, buying a new TV can be overwhelming, especially since there are hundreds of models and a multitude of features available. Here are some tips to help you choose the right TV for your needs.

Energy efficiency: How to choose a cheap, long-term (and environmentally friendly) TV

When choosing a new TV, it’s important to consider its energy efficiency. Not only can an energy-efficient TV save you money on your electricity bill, it can also help reduce your carbon footprint and contribute to a healthier environment. You may not find the second part relevant, but the question is, do you like pollution, extreme heat, drought? Whatever the answer, keep in mind that energy pollution works over decades. The environmental problems of today are due to the pollution of a decade or more ago. If you want to prevent environmental problems from getting worse, maybe even better, you might want to consider the energy efficiency of the electronics you use.

And furthermore, energy will become more and more expensive in the coming years, no matter what we do. If you choose energy-inefficient equipment, the price of using it will be higher in the years to come.

EU Energy Label (illustrated for fridges, but valid for all electronics and appliances)

North American Energy Label

To determine the energy efficiency of a TV, look for the ENERG label for products in the European Union or the ENERGY STAR for those in the US and Canada. Similar classifications exist in most countries of the world. This label indicates that the TV complies with the strict energy efficiency rules established worldwide. TVs with this label use less energy than standard models without sacrificing performance or features. (See the description of energy certificate systems on the European Union website ).

Another factor to consider is the size of the TV. In general, larger TVs use more energy than smaller TVs. So, if you want to minimize energy consumption, you can consider buying a TV with a smaller diagonal.

Additional features for energy efficiency

Additionally, some TVs come with built-in power-saving features that can help reduce power consumption. Look for features like automatic brightness adjustment and sleep modes to help save energy when you’re not actively using the TV. It should be noted that the efficiency labels describe the actual consumption during operation. But electronics consume up to 80% when they are not working but plugged in. Efficient functions allow you to save when you are not using the equipment. Or, alternatively, you can choose smart sockets or extension cords, which you turn off (or switch off) when you’re not using the TV.

By choosing an energy-efficient TV, you can enjoy all your favorite shows and movies while minimizing your impact on the environment and saving money in the process.

Determine your available budget

Once you’ve determined how much you want it to cost you over the life of it, set a clear budget for the purchase. Before you start shopping, it’s important to determine how much you want to spend. Televisions can range from a few hundred dollars to several thousand dollars. Consider how much you’re willing to spend and stick to your budget. Otherwise, you’ll be tempted by another model over and over again, and shopping will become a pain.

Check out discounts and shopping facilities

Promotional campaigns and price reductions can help you to buy a device with clearly superior features within the established budget. Check the discounts available on this site, where we try to centralize as many of the special offers of the big online and offline stores as possible. Big Discounts page (EU : Romania). See also: Comerciant : The on-line shop directory.

Determine the diagonal you need

The size of your TV should depend on the size of your room and how far you will be sitting from the screen. As a general rule, the TV should have a diagonal of one third of the distance from the viewing position to the screen. For example, if you will be sitting 2 meters away, a 66 cm TV would be suitable. At 1.5 meters, the optimal diagonal is 50 cm.

Choose the display type

There are three main types of displays: LED, OLED and QLED. LED TVs are the most common and affordable, while OLED and QLED TVs offer better picture quality but are more expensive. OLED TVs are known for deep blacks and vibrant colors, while QLED TVs offer brighter colors and better contrast.

The technology of the moment is OLED, which replaces the plasma models that were popular a few years ago. Even though some plasma TVs are still available in the market, keep in mind that they have major drawbacks. First, it consumes a lot of energy. Second, they produce a lot of heat, which can be unpleasant. Third, their components are difficult to recycle and produce long-term disadvantages. The new OLED technology uses organic LEDs and offers great energy savings. Also, the colors are more natural and vibrant, and the resolution better.

HDR: What is it and how does it affect your viewing experience?

HDR, or High Dynamic Range, is a technology that allows for a wider range of colors and brightness levels on your TV. This technology increases the contrast between light and dark areas of an image, creating a more vivid and realistic image.

When shopping for a new TV, you may come across different types of HDR, including HDR10, Dolby Vision and HLG. Each type has its own unique specifications and capabilities.

HDR10 is the most widely used type of HDR and can be found on most mid-range to high-end TVs. Dolby Vision is another popular standard that offers even more dynamic range than HDR10. HLG, or Hybrid Log Gamma, is a newer standard, also in the HDR range, that is designed specifically for live TV broadcasts.

If you want to get the most out of your viewing experience, consider choosing a TV with HDR technology. With its ability to produce brighter whites and deeper blacks, as well as more vibrant colors, HDR can make everything from movies to video games look more immersive and realistic.

Understanding resolution: What is 4K and why does it matter?

When shopping for a new TV, you’ll often see terms like “HD” and “4K.” But what exactly do these terms mean and how do they impact the viewing experience?

Resolution refers to the number of pixels on the screen, with more pixels resulting in a sharper and more detailed image. HD, or high definition, usually refers to a resolution of 1920 x 1080 pixels. However, in recent years, 4K has become the standard for high-end TVs (the highest-priced and best-quality class of the marketed product spectrum).

4K resolution, also known as ultra-high-definition (UHD), offers four times more pixels than HD. This means images are sharper and more detailed, with smoother textures and more realistic colours.

Why does resolution matter? Simply put, the higher resolution allows you to see more detail in the image. Whether you’re watching a movie or playing a video game, a higher resolution can make everything look sharper and more immersive.
It’s important to note that not all content is available in 4K yet. However, many streaming services like Netflix and Amazon Prime Video offer 4K content for certain movies and TV shows. Additionally, some newer video game consoles, such as the PlayStation 5 and Xbox Series X, support 4K gaming. If you are looking for the best possible viewing experience, uni TV with 4K resolution will be the best solution. With its incredibly detailed visuals and vibrant colors, it’s sure to take your entertainment to the next level.

Consider the refresh rate

The refresh rate describes how many times per second the TV is activating the pixels on the screen. A higher refresh rate can reduce motion blur and make fast-paced action scenes look smoother. Look for a TV with a refresh rate of at least 120 Hz.

Smart functions (Smart TV)

Many TVs now come with smart features such as built-in streaming apps or voice control. Consider whether you want these features and how important they are to you. Smart TVs have become increasingly popular in recent years, offering a range of features designed to enhance your viewing experience. Below are some of the most common smart TV features and how they can benefit you.

Streaming apps

Among the biggest advantages of a smart TV is its ability to access the Internet and play programs that are not offered by cable TV. Thus, a smart TV can stream content from popular applications such as Netflix, Hulu and Amazon Prime Video. With a built-in Wi-Fi connection, you can easily access your favorite shows and movies without the need for an external streaming device.

Voice control

Many smart TVs now come with voice control capabilities, allowing you to use simple voice commands to navigate menus, search for content and adjust settings. This feature is especially useful if you have difficulty using the remote or prefer to control programs hands-free.

Screen mirroring

Screen mirroring functions allow you to display content from your smartphone or tablet directly on the TV screen. This feature is great for sharing photos or videos with friends and family or playing mobile games on a bigger screen.

Browsing the Internet

Some smart TVs also offer web browsing capabilities, allowing you to browse the internet directly on the TV screen. This feature can be useful for searching for information while watching a show or movie, or for browsing social media during commercial breaks.

With these features and more, smart TVs offer a number of benefits. They can improve your viewing experience and make it easier for you to access your favorite content. When buying a new TV, consider which smart features are most important to you and choose a model that suits your needs.

Essential: Read reviews

You can’t try every TV on the market. Especially when you buy online, you can’t try any. But for all of them there are many reviews published by other users. Many of them are on Youtube, in video format, and this will allow you to see how they work. Sure, you won’t be able to see the actual resolution or colors, but you’ll find a lot of useful information. Before making a final decision, read reviews from other consumers and experts. This can give you a better idea of ​​the TV’s performance and any potential problems.

By following these tips, you can choose a TV that suits your needs and fits your budget.

AI vs AI

a woman looking afar

For those who fear the creations of ChatGPT bots, there are solutions to automatically identify texts or images produced by artificial intelligence. There are dozens of such solutions. One of the best performing platforms is Winston AI, which also works as an anti-plagiarism software. 

Obviously, nothing is new under the sun. Winston AI has its own chat where you can discuss how bad the other AI solutions are.

Why people does not read literature anymore?

woman wearing brown shirt carrying black leather bag on front of library books

In recent years, it has become increasingly apparent that fewer and fewer people are taking the time to read literature. While there are many potential reasons for this trend, some of the most commonly cited include the rise of digital media, the decline of traditional reading culture, and changes in the way that people spend their free time.

One of the biggest factors contributing to the decline of literature reading is the rise of digital media. In today’s world, people are constantly bombarded with a plethora of information from various sources such as social media, video games, and streaming services. This constant stream of stimulation can make it difficult for people to focus on reading a book, especially when it requires a significant amount of time and attention. Additionally, many people simply find digital media to be more engaging and entertaining than traditional books, which can also discourage them from reading literature.

Another reason why people may not be reading literature as much as they used to is that traditional reading culture is in decline. In the past, reading was seen as a leisure activity that was valued and respected. However, in today’s fast-paced world, reading is often seen as a chore or a burden, and people are more likely to prioritize other activities such as working, exercising, or socializing. This shift in cultural attitudes can make it difficult for people to find the time or motivation to engage with literature.

Finally, changes in the way that people spend their free time can also contribute to the decline of literature reading. In the past, people had more free time to devote to leisure activities such as reading, but today, people are more likely to be working longer hours, commuting, or taking care of family responsibilities. This leaves them with less time and energy for reading, which can lead to a decline in their interest and engagement with literature.

In conclusion, the decline of literature reading can be attributed to a variety of factors, including the rise of digital media, the decline of traditional reading culture, and changes in the way that people spend their free time. While there is no easy solution to this problem, it is important for society to recognize the importance of literature and to work to promote reading and engage people with great works of literature.

Photo: Pexels

Romania in/out: Migration – an economic problem or a cultural one?

At a first level of understanding, the problem of migration could be seen as one of big numbers and international rankings: in Europe, Russia is in first place, with 146 million inhabitants, Germany second, Turkey third; Romania is in 10th place, even after recent demographic declines. In the European Union, it is in 7th place, between Poland and the Netherlands. In the world, it is in 59th place, between Sri Lanka and Burkina Fasso. They are simple rankings, good at most for establishing the number of MEPs that Romania sends to Brussels.

But as solid as they may seem, the numbers reflect reality only to a certain extent. International migration is a complex phenomenon, not always legal, and the figures are based on estimates and reports (with political stakes) of some state and international bodies.

Double scale of statistics
In the whole complex of international migration, the countries of Eastern Europe really represent a special case. Since intra-community migration is no longer regulated, and the European Union lacks a minimum of centralization, the dynamics of the phenomenon are rather less transparent. Thus, in Romania, the official figures describing the phenomenon are stuck at a few hundred thousand. This is a hyperconservative interpretation, which only takes into account the population that processed the entire administrative process of changing residence and notified the Romanian authorities about it. 

Sources that take into account actual migration, beyond the formalization of relations with the administration, push the figure to several million. Traditionally, based on remittances (money sent to the country by emigrants), the total estimated by the World Bank and the National Bank of Romania is 3.5 million Romanians settled (semi)permanently abroad. It should be noted that only remittances made through financial bodies are monitored, not those directly or through the intermediation of non-banking mechanisms. 

The estimates made by the OECD, the United Nations, Eurostat or the databases dedicated to migration and demography offer figures quite different from each other, outlining the idea of ​​limited transparency. Indeed, there are actually abandoned localities and communes in Romania, and the effect of effective transparency would be the abolition of a large number of UATs (territorial administrative units) that have become unsustainable or completely depopulated. Also, if we were to operate with the real figures, the impact would be felt at the higher administrative levels, changing the vectors of public policies and the political balances in the local administration; on the other hand, requiring the necessary recalibration of the attention and interest given to Romanian citizens abroad – from the right to vote (currently calibrated for a few hundred thousand people, not for a few million, as the real migration represents) to consular assistance, supporting diaspora organizations and associativity, supporting transnational economic and cultural actions at acceptable levels. This is all the more so since, in addition to remittances (worth several million dollars a year, with a peak of almost 10 million in 2008), many of those who left pay some categories of taxes in Romania,

Operating with unrealistic statistical data, collected rigidly and out of time with the dynamics of social phenomena, is characteristic not only for international migration, but also for internal migration. Thus, many small towns and small administrative units in the countryside have, in their records, larger population than the real one, while large cities such as Bucharest, Cluj-Napoca, Iași, etc. have a larger effective population than the nominal one. Recently, the ex-mayor of Bucharest, Gabriela Firea, estimated the real population of the city to be at least 4 million, double the official figures.

The economic impact, the social substrate

Based on the data provided by Eurostat, with 3.6 million Romanians residing in other European Union states, Romania ranks first in the EU, followed by Poland, with 1.5 million emigrants, Italy, with 1.3 million, and Portugal, with 0.9 million. Not only the countries with the least performing economies are sources of this intra-community mobility, but also Great Britain, Germany, France or Spain, which occupy the next places in the ranking of mobility, each with over half a million emigrants. Thus, after the initial patterns, in which migration meant the transition from areas of low economic productivity to areas of high productivity, a gradual transition is made to the diversification of patterns, to the pursuit of opportunities specific to each area, tending towards balancing development and economic homogeneity at the level of the Eurozone. As far as Romania is concerned, the repeated postponement of the convergence and adoption calendar of the European currency will delay economic homogenization and the diversification of demographic flows.

Even under the conditions in which Romania is not a Schengen member and has not adopted the Euro currency, the characteristics of migration have changed significantly in the last 20 years. Prior to integration into the European Union, migration had a very high degree of vulnerability: cases of human trafficking, exploitation of women, exploitation of adults or forced labor were very numerous, placing Romania among the countries with the highest risk, along with the former Yugoslavia , Uruguay, Tanzania and Georgia. 

Free access to the labor market in some European countries, after 2007, reduced the vulnerability of migrants and cross-border crime related to them. However, the phenomena did not disappear entirely, according to the CDTC, which monitors global human trafficking.

In general, international migration data and studies based on them are motivated by economic and humanitarian needs. Acting in sometimes divergent directions, these monitoring vectors, as a rule, overshadow the other perspectives on this issue – the sociocultural ones in the first place, respectively those related to identity and those related to multiculturalism. / Text and image: Nicu Ilie

See the full article in Cultura magazine. Translated with the accord of the author. Rights reserved. Copyright:

The European Union – Member States, enlargement, contributors and beneficiaries

EU27. Blue: Member states. Yellow: Candidates. Light yellow: Potential candidates. Orange: Ex-member.

The Treaties of Rome and Lisbon led to the increase of the political component, in addition to the economic one. Through these, the EU promotes democratic values, civil rights and social modernization. Many other changes to increase the political component are in various stages of debate. Under discussion are measures that would lead to a consolidation of foreign, military, cultural policy, the rule of law – areas in which there are still many inconsistencies. However, because major decisions are taken by consensus, such measures are difficult to take, and the EU remains predominantly an economic union.

The European Union also includes numerous non-European territories, at various stages of integration. The extraterritorial departments of France, Portugal, Spain, the Netherlands, Denmark expand the real map of the European Union on a global scale. If a some of them wish to retain broad forms of autonomy, some have decided to fully integrate into the European space and the EU. East Africa.

European micro-states (Vatican, San Marino, Monaco, Andorra and Lichtenstein) are not part of the EU, but have various agreements with it. The smallest member state of the Union is Malta.

The withdrawal of Great Britain from the EU, at the beginning of 2020, affected the Union’s ability to consolidate the political vector. Also, the succession of crises after 2009 – the financial crisis, the Covid crisis, the invasion of Ukraine by the Russian Federation – affected the possibility of the enlargement of the European Union. During this period, only one member was admitted, Croatia in 2013. Nine other countries are on the waiting list. Turkey started negotiations as early as 2005, Albania in 2020, Ukraine and the Republic of Moldova in 2022. Negotiations are also underway with other states from the former Yugoslavia, all of them – including Serbia – being interested in access to the European Union. Also, in the Caucasian area, Georgia has started accession negotiations.

All 27 member states send representatives with full rights to the European Parliament, their number being in relation to the population of each member state. They also appoint representatives to the European Commission and other European institutions. As for the union budget, all states contribute to it and have access to funding programs. But 10 of the states pay more than they receive (net contributor), and 17 receive funding above the value of their own contribution (net beneficiary). The first category includes Germany (with a gap of 21.4 billion euros), France (10.9 billion), the Netherlands (4.1 billion), Sweden (2.5 billion), Denmark (1.5 billion). In the second category, net beneficiary, the biggest differences between the contribution and the amounts received are in Poland (12.9 billion), Greece (4.7 billion), Hungary (4, 3 billion), Romania (4.2 billion) and Spain (3.5 billion). The figures reflect the 2022 budget year.

EU27. Yellow: Net contributors. Blue: Net beneficiaries.

read more on Cultura magazine

Short survey of Czech literature

Czech literature has a rich and diverse history, with many great writers and literary movements. From the early Gothic period to the present day, Czech literature has been shaped by its unique cultural and political context. Here are 12 great writers and literary currents that have contributed to the development of Czech literature:

  1. Karel Čapek – Čapek was a prolific writer of novels, plays, and essays. He is best known for his science fiction works, such as “R.U.R.” and “The War with the Newts,” which explore the dangers of technology and the potential for human progress.
  2. Franz Kafka – Although Kafka was born in Prague, he wrote in German and is considered a German-language writer. Nevertheless, his works have had a significant impact on Czech literature. His novels and short stories, such as “The Metamorphosis” and “The Trial,” explore themes of alienation, bureaucracy, and existentialism.
  3. Jaroslav Hašek – Hašek was a satirist and humorist who is best known for his novel “The Good Soldier Švejk.” The novel follows the adventures of a bumbling soldier in World War I and is a classic of Czech literature.
  4. Bohumil Hrabal – Hrabal was a postmodernist writer who is known for his experimental style and use of stream-of-consciousness narration. His novels, such as “I Served the King of England” and “Too Loud a Solitude,” explore themes of memory, identity, and the human condition.
  5. Milan Kundera – Kundera is a contemporary writer who is known for his philosophical novels, such as “The Unbearable Lightness of Being” and “Immortality.” His works explore the nature of existence, love, and the human experience.
  6. Jan Neruda – Neruda was a poet and journalist who is best known for his collection of short stories, “Tales of the Little Quarter.” The stories capture the spirit of life in Prague’s historic district and are a classic of Czech literature.
  7. Jiří Orten – Orten was a poet who died tragically at the age of 22 during World War II. His poetry, such as “Elegy for a Youth,” is characterized by its lyricism and sensitivity.
  8. Vítězslav Nezval – Nezval was a surrealist poet and playwright who is known for his experimental style and use of language. His works, such as “Valerie and Her Week of Wonders,” explore themes of dreams, the unconscious, and the irrational.
  9. Ivan Klíma – Klíma is a contemporary writer who is known for his novels, such as “Love and Garbage” and “Judge on Trial.” His works explore themes of totalitarianism, censorship, and the human condition.
  10. Josef Škvorecký – Škvorecký was a writer and publisher who is known for his novels, such as “The Cowards” and “The Engineer of Human Souls.” His works explore themes of exile, identity, and the power of literature.
  11. Ludvík Vaculík – Vaculík was a writer and dissident who is known for his essay “Two Thousand Words for a Manifesto.” The essay, which was published in 1968, criticized the Communist regime and called for political reform.
  12. Czech Surrealism – Czech Surrealism was a literary movement that emerged in the 1930s and was characterized by its use of irrational and dreamlike imagery. The movement was led by poets such as Vítězslav Nezval and Karel Teige and had a significant impact on Czech literature.

These are just a few of the many great writers and literary currents that have contributed to the rich and diverse history of Czech literature. Whether you’re interested in science fiction, satire, or poetry, there is something for everyone in the world of Czech literature.

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