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A Brief History of the ATM

The ATM, or Automated Teller Machine, is a common sight today, but that has not always been the case. ATMs are used to allow consumers to withdraw money from their bank accounts, check their balances, and perform some other actions. Some ATMs allow customers of the specific bank that maintains the machine to deposit cash. Some ATMs allow people to top up their mobile phones using their debit cards.

There are now more than 3.5 million ATMs installed worldwide. The very first ATM was installed in Japan in 1966. It was a ‘Computer Loan Machine’ which gave people cash on a three month loan, with an interest rate of 5% per annum. The first idea for an ATM that was documented was one that was patented by Adrian Ashfield, based on an idea for a card based machine that relied on a card and a unique number from the user to prove their identity. The first true cash machine, of the kind that we know of as an ATM today, was the Barclay Bank Cash Machine that was installed in a branch in North London, England in 1967. From there, use spread rapidly. Bank of Scotland started using the machines in 1968, which should come as no surprise because they have links to Barclays. In 1969, the first ATM appeared in Australia, but it was a primitive device – it would dispense $25 at a time, and users would have to wait for their card to be returned to them in the post.

Today, ATMs are far more flexible. For example, the Royal Bank of Scotland now has machines that will allow users to withdraw up to £100 at a time by entering a code that they can request using their smartphone.

Today, most ATMs are free to use, but there are still some that are used as a revenue-generation option, and that charge a fee for cash withdrawals. These are usually seen in pubs and concert venues, where patrons are likely to need cash but be unwilling to leave. There are ATMs at gas stations, and on cruise ships, too, and these often offer multiple language options because they are going to be used by people who are traveling. Many have Braille on the keypads and to help users find side buttons. They are usually built-in to walls to prevent theft or damage of the machine itself, and recessed to stop passers by from watching users entering their PINs.

Which Is The Most Cost Effective Between Glasses, Contact Lenses, and LASIK Surgery?

Although all human senses play important roles in helping us lead productive, independent and fulfilling lives, the sense of sight is arguably the most important of all the senses that we have. There seemingly is no replacement for the ability to perceive our environment and make sense of it. With this in mind, it is easy to understand why there are myriads of people who throng opticians’ offices for eyesight corrective treatments.

Additionally, due to the demands for corrective treatment, several corrective treatment options have been developed. The most popular treatment options include the use of corrective glasses, the use of contact lenses, and the undergoing the LASIK procedure (learn more about lasik surgery).

Of interest to many people seeking corrective eyesight procedures, is cost effectiveness of the three options in the long run. Herein we try to answer this critical question and give you an idea of which option will save your hard-earned money.

Treatment Costs – The most expensive treatment option is the LASIK option. On average, it can cost about $2,100 for a single eye. On the other hand, the cost of eyesight corrective glasses and lenses prescription is tremendously lower, since one is only paying the consulting fee.

Long-Term Costs – In the long run, the most cost effective eyesight corrective is the LASIK procedure. With a single installation for the procedure, one does not need to undergo the procedure again. However, with lenses, they can add up to more than $14,000 in your lifetime (depending on the age you start using the lenses). As for the glasses, the cost of periodic optician visitations makes the use of glasses quite expensive in the long run.

The Cost and Risk Involved – Although, there are inherent risks involved in choosing any of the eyesight corrective solutions. However, some are riskier than others are. In this regard, you should note that the use of lenses bears a tremendous risk due to exposure to scratching and scarring, infections from bacteria and fungus, and blood vessel invasion. On the other hand, when LASIK is performed in the right manner (by qualified and experienced practitioners), there is a reduced risk of these complications. Finally, the uses of glasses are involved with the lowest risk of complications. Therefore, it is considered the safest eyesight corrective procedures with the least cost emanating from complications.

In conclusion, the LASIK procedure is the most cost effective eyesight corrective solution.

Different Types Of Roofing Materials For Your Home or Business

Property owners and buyers today have a wider selection of roofing materials to choose from. From plastic options including plastic polymer roofs to, traditional wood shingles and shakes; finding the perfect fit as per your preferences has never been easier.

Read on below to find out more about the different roofing materials available today.

Metal Roofing

Among the most popular roofing materials, these roofs are made of different alloys and metals including zinc, copper, aluminum and steel. Their durability usually varies with the specific material used, as well as the finishing. Metal roofs are fastened to the roof frame using visible or hidden fasteners to make for the desired appearance. Metal roofs usually absorb less heat as compared to asphalt, and have great wind and fire resistance properties. Their price varies from affordable to expensive depending on the material used.

Asphalt Shingles Roof

Ranked among the inexpensive roofing materials, asphalt shingles are made using fiberglass or organic paper mat combined with asphalt, with a mineral granule finish. Since asphalt shingles are made using petroleum based products, they cannot be recycled and mostly end up in landfills, after their useful life is over. It is also worth mentioning that asphalt shingle roofing is susceptible to algae especially in humid climates. However, buyers can opt for algae resistant shingles.

Concrete Tile Roof

This roofing material is rated among the most durable options available owing to the solid construction. Concrete tiles are made by mixing clay and Portland cement; this makes for a heavy roof, which requires appropriate support from the underlying structure. Concrete tiles for roofing can be made to like other roofing materials with a surface finish. The desired color can also run throughout the tile if necessary. This roofing material has a moderate cost.

Clay Tile Roof

Classified among the more expensive roofing materials in the market, clay tiles are highly durable, but require a strong supporting structure owning to their substantial weight. Clay tiles are made from natural clay fired in a kiln. Their appearance can be the traditional Italian or Spanish style, or tailored to resemble other roofing materials including wood shingles.

Plastic Polymer Roof

This is a moderately priced roofing material made from a high quality plastic polymer. It can be designed to have a wood shakes or slate appearance. Some of the many benefits associated with this roofing material include its highly durable and low maintenance nature. Furthermore, the plastic polymer can be made from recycled materials, and can be recycled after decommissioning.


Rated as one of the most expensive roofing materials, slate roofs require specialized labor to install. Obtained from natural slate rock, the material is highly durable, depending on where the rock is mined from. Slate roofs are known to be highly durable. It is worth mentioning that these roofs require a strong underlying structure owning to their substantial weight.

Wood Shakes And Shingles

Wood shakes and shingles are made of thick shakes or sawn shingles obtained from rot resistant woods including redwoods and cedar. They tend to have a short lifespan and require replacement sooner than other options mentioned above.

Ref. Click here for more information or to find roof repair contractors in your area.