In many ways, the history of Iraq is the history of all humanity. The Iraq Museum’s huge collection tells the epic story of human civilization, from the earliest settlements to the rise and fall of vast empires. These artifacts, some of them more than 10,000 years old, show the development of everything from hunting and writing implements to mathematics, art, law, religion, and industry — and ultimately — humankind’s best and worst impulses. Learn more about the museum

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Top 5 Reasons for Using Field Management Software

Asset management is a challenge, one faced by almost every type of business in the world. As a matter of fact, asset management practices have everything to do with the earnings of utility enterprises. Since weak, disorganized, and inconsistent job lifecycles can slow down the progress of a company until it can no longer operate, entrepreneurs need to establish whether they’ve set up their businesses for success or failure. Besides improving the job lifecycle flow, properly implemented field scheduling applications can equip business management teams with the tools needed to ensure success. Here are five good reasons why businesses need to use field management software.

1. Customer data access

With access to the required information, service technicians can address a customer’s request more effectively. As such, ensuring this level of accessibility contributes towards effective preventative maintenance and workforce management. By providing customer contact information and histories, field management applications make it easier to complete the job, reducing the time required. The lesser the time needed to complete a request, the more your business and its customers stand to benefit. Additionally, field management solutions can provide access to specific details like equipment model numbers, meaning your service technicians will have everything they need to close tickets in a single visit.

2. Route planning

When it comes to remote workforce management, businesses usually rely on proper planning and coordination. With a field management solution, you can organize customer requests by location, reducing travel time, motor vehicle wear and tear, and fuel expenses. Besides creating time for more requests, a much tighter schedule gives you more time to focus on high-priority requests. In fact, GPS enabled applications can map out the most suitable route based on traffic and time-of-day.

3. Work order management

With a properly implemented field management application, you can create work orders internally and assign tasks to your field technicians remotely. The scheduling will be based on factors such as proximity, availability, urgency, and level of expertise. This enhanced functionality allows businesses to meet the needs of their clients with greater quality and speed. As such, both the company and the customer can end up saving a lot of time and money.

4. Recapture unapplied time

Field management software solutions can make the progress of all your work orders more visible. Technicians usually expect an 8-hour workday pay. But it’s not uncommon for some of them to pad their timesheets or perform non-billable tasks whenever an assignment is completed early. Field management applications can increase transparency and help reduce non-billable work, both of which can help improve productivity.

5. Identify trends

For field management solutions, reporting tools that can help you identify workflow patterns are a standard feature. Thanks to this functionality, productivity versus schedule saturation trends will become apparent, making it easy to weed out underperformers.


6 Benefits to Using Leak Detection on Your Products

Leak detection tests are an important part of food production. When you have equipment on premises, it allows you to conduct more tests to learn about how seals and packaging will hold up at different altitudes, and more. The benefits to using leak detection are numerous.

1. You Avoid Leaks

You don’t want to find out that your food leaked. Whether it’s during transit, at the store, or at a customer’s home, leaks are a bad thing. It could make it harder to establish trust in your product in the future, too.

A simple test can tell you everything you need to know about pressurization and the packaging itself.

2. You Avoid Spoilage

Even the smallest leak can cause the food to spoil before the expiration date. People buy from you expecting a good product. If there is a leak, even if you can’t see it, the food will go bad. Spoilage often results in product returns, which affects your bottom line.

It might also make it hard for people to return to your brand when they have experienced spoiled products from you in the past.

3. You Provide a Better Product

Your goal is to provide the best possible product. By spending an extra day or two in testing, you can give people a product that is well sealed. You know it won’t give off any emissions and that there is no leak.

The expiration date stamped on the product is also more likely to be valid. Otherwise, if it expires before the date you have identified, people will be disappointed.

4. You Learn More About Packaging

As you conduct tests on premises, you will learn a lot more about packaging. Some methods of packaging might work better than others. If you have failed vacuum-sealed tests in the past, you might want to look at another way to package a product.

Boxes, bags, cans, and other packaging can be tested inside of leak detection equipment. If you have any kind of issue, you can go back to the drawing board until you find something you’re satisfied with.

5. You Reduce Waste

If you send out a case of a product that is leaking, it’s going to come back to you. This is an entire case of food that cannot be sold. It becomes waste that you have to deal with.

The more product you send out without testing, the more likely you are to encounter waste. By running a few tests, you can determine the better packaging to ensure that all food is properly packaged and can hold up against any shipping method that you use.

6. You Increase Profits

Profits will increase as you improve your packaging. This is because you are less likely to deal with waste and returns. You also provide a better product, which in turn ensures that customers are happy with what you have to offer.

Knowing about leak detection will provide your business with more information. You can create a better product and avoid problems throughout operations.


4 Reasons to Upgrade Your Leak Detection Equipment Today

The use of quality leak detection equipment in your facility is a necessity. After all, this equipment is responsible for ensuring that your product packaging is properly sealed before it ships out to the market for sale. However, many companies are currently using outdated equipment that performs rather poorly. Upgrading this equipment periodically is beneficial and even necessary at times. There are several great reasons why now may be the right time to invest in new leak detection equipment for your business.

1. Ensure the Quality of Your Products
The quality of your products is directly affected by the packaging that you use. This packaging may prevent breakage, spoiling, contamination and more. When such issues happen to your products while they are en route to the market or directly to customers, the image of your company and brand can be jeopardized. The last thing you want is to be known as a company that sells broken products or spoiled food. It can take many long years to reverse this type of public image, so it is best to avoid reaching that point altogether. Leak detection packaging can be used to confirm the integrity of the packaging before each shipment, and this can protect your brand image.

2. Take Advantage of New Innovations
You may already have related equipment in use in your facility, but it could be old and outdated. Older equipment may be more likely to fail, or it may be less effective overall at detecting leaks in your product packaging. New innovations in this type of equipment have dramatically improved the results for all types of businesses. The only way to take advantage of the many benefits associated with the new innovations in your business is to make an upgrade.

3. Reduce the Risk of a Liability Lawsuit
In some instances, the quality of your food or other products can be so poor that your company is exposed to a liability issue. For example, your company may unintentionally sell food that has become contaminated with bacteria, and your customers may fall ill after eating it. This could result in a liability lawsuit filed against your company to pay for your customers’ medical bills and other related expenses. Such expenses can be astronomical, and this can have a major impact on your business’s ability to operate successfully. When you use leak detection equipment to confirm the quality of the packaging that you are using, you are making a solid effort to reduce your exposure to liability issues.

4. Improve Your Bottom Line
Everything from returned products and negative reviews about your business online to liability issues and more can be the result of poor packaging. Packaging issues can have a direct effect on your bottom line, and this can erode away profits and prevent you from having funds required to grow over time. If you are focused on improving your bottom line, you cannot take chances by using low-quality or outdated leak detection equipment. Upgrading now will help you to bolster profitability in the months and years to come.

It may be easy to view this type of equipment as rather unimportant, but you can see that the quality of the leak detection equipment in use in your facility can play a very real role in the overall success of your business. You and your team work hard to create quality products, and you need to use the right equipment to ensure that your packaging will protect those products properly until they are ready to be consumed. Now is a great time to learn more about the different features available in modern equipment.


Looted Treasures Return to Iraq

Iraq announced the return of hundreds of antiquities that had ended up in the United States, although 632 pieces repatriated last year were now unaccounted for.


Iraq’s Ancient Past: Rediscovering Ur’s Royal Cemetery

PHILADELPHIA — A new, long-term exhibition, “Iraq’s Ancient Past: Rediscovering Ur’s Royal Cemetery,” opens Sunday, Oct. 25, at the University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology.

The exhibit will bring details of the famous expedition conducted by Penn Museum and the British Museum to life through field notes, photographs and archival documents and more than 220 ancient artifacts unearthed at the excavation. “Iraq’s Ancient Past” looks to the present and future as well, exploring the ongoing story of scientific inquiry and discovery made possible by those excavations as well as the pressing issues around the preservation of Iraq’s cultural heritage today.

In 1922, the same year that Howard Carter made headlines with the discovery of Tutankhamen’s tomb in Egypt, Penn Museum and the British Museum embarked upon a joint expedition to the ancient site of Ur in southern Iraq. Led by British archaeologist Leonard Woolley, this expedition astonished the world by uncovering a 4,500-year-old royal cemetery with more than 2,000 burials that detailed a remarkable ancient Mesopotamian civilization at the height of its glory.

Centerpiece of the exhibition is the collection of famous ancient artifacts uncovered and, in some cases, painstakingly conserved, including five objects that art critic and former Metropolitan Museum of Art Director Thomas Hoving called, “the finest, most resplendent and magical works of art in all of America”: the Ram-Caught-in-the-Thicket, the Great Lyre with a gold and lapis lazuli bull’s head, Queen Puabi’s jewelry, an electrum drinking tumbler and a gold ostrich egg as well as the queen’s headdress and other treasures large and small.

“Iraq’s Ancient Past” recounts the formation of the joint expedition to Ur, the setting up the “expedition house” for the excavation team and the many excavation challenges that Woolley’s team faced.

Known today as “Tell al Muquayyar,” or “mound of pitch (tar),” the site of Ur, near present-day Nasiriyah, was thought to be “Ur of the Chaldees,” the birthplace of the biblical patriarch Abraham. During his excavations, Woolley hoped to uncover Abraham’s home and other biblical evidence. In 1929, he interpreted a deep layer of river clay he uncovered to be the remains of a “great flood” from the biblical story of Noah. Like so much discovered at Ur, his sensational story made international headlines.

His major discovery, however, was the site of Ur’s royal cemetery. With a crew of hundreds, he began this massive excavation in 1926, eventually uncovering nearly 2,000 burials. Sixteen of these he named “royal tombs” based on their style of construction, evidence of royal attendants who were interred at the same time and the sheer wealth of the graves’ contents. The three most celebrated tombs were the looted tomb of a king, the remarkably preserved tomb of Queen Puabi and what he dubbed “the Great Death Pit” since it contained 74 carefully laid out and richly adorned bodies, all but six female.

The famous excavations attracted the attention and involvement of a number of personalities whom the exhibition also highlights. For example, T.E. Lawrence (Lawrence of Arabia) was instrumental in securing the excavation and Woolley’s participation, while Agatha Christie, who eventually married Woolley’s assistant Max Mallowan, wrote “Murder in Mesopotamia” to mark her experience on site.

Since the excavations came to a close in 1934, scholars have continued to study Penn Museum’s Ur collection, incorporating new evidence from other ancient sites and using improved conservation practices and new scientific techniques to further investigate the material. For example, because almost nothing excavated from the royal tombs could have been created from locally available materials, the exhibition details how scholars are rebuilding the story of 4,500-year-old trade networks across the Near and Middle East.

The exhibition concludes with a look at the situation in Iraq today, where looting in the Iraq National Museum and at archaeological sites throughout the country has destroyed much evidence about the past. To date, the Ur excavation site has been largely preserved, having been contained within the boundaries of Tallil Air Base and under the control of allied forces until May 2009 when the site was officially returned to Iraq’s State Board of Antiquities.

“Iraq’s Ancient Past” is co-curated by Penn Museum’s Richard L. Zettler, associate curator-in-charge of the Near East Section, and Holly Pittman, curator in the Near East Section. They are contributors to “Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur” (Penn Museum, 1998), a catalogue from an earlier exhibition that featured material from this site.

Additional information is available at www.penn.museum or by calling 215-898-4000.