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Inflatable electric car can drive off cliffs

first_imgIt’s hard to say what the most intriguing thing about XP Vehicles’ inflatable car is. Maybe it’s that the car can travel for up to 2,500 miles on a single electric charge (the distance across the US is roughly 3,000 miles). “Research shows that the metal in your car is the largest cause of death and injury,” the company explains on its Web site. “The shrapnel, body compression immobility, lung compression, dismemberment and other serious results of a crash are most often caused by the inflexibility of metal and the permanent deformation of the body of the metal car around or into your body. Hence the need for, and name of, the Jaws of Life.”For another thing, the car won´t “blow off the road,” due to a special ballast and aerodynamic design features which make the car very stable. An inflatable car might even provide additional safety measures in certain circumstances, such as if someone were to accidentally drive it off a cliff – although the company says that it´s not intended for this use.If you´re concerned that an inflatable car may be too tempting for a tire-slashing juvenile delinquent, XP Vehicles says that their car bodies are actually pretty difficult to pierce. The cars have multiple chambers, so a single slice wouldn´t pop it like a balloon – “somebody would really have to go at it” to cause major damage, the company says. And, in the case of vandalism, you can repair it yourself. Whether it´s legal to drive an inflatable car on the road will depend on local ordinances, which dealers or individual buyers will be responsible for knowing. But, as XP Vehicles estimates a $200 billion market for alternative energy vehicles, changes in regulations seem inevitable.XP Vehicles is not releasing specific vehicle data until an official launch, which will be announced after the company receives various safety certification papers.More information: http://www.xpcarteam.comvia: Gizmodo Or maybe it’s the fact that you buy the car online, it gets shipped to you in two cardboard boxes, and the estimated assembly time is less than two hours. Perhaps it’s that the car is made out of “airbags” – the same polymer materials used to cushion NASA’s rovers when they landed on Mars. Then again, it could be the company’s claim that you can drive the car off a cliff without serious injury, and that it will float in a flood or tsunami.Together, these features characterize the Whisper, XP Vehicles’ solution to the oil crisis. The company doesn’t expect the car to be in production until 2010 at the earliest, but when it is, it will hopefully be an extremely affordable $10,000 or less. XP Vehicles envisions four body styles, along with a special low-priced model for the Southeast Asian market.As the San Francisco-based start-up explains on its Web site, the miracle behind the 2,500-mile range is a “hot-swap XPack Multi-Core Battery/Fuel Cell power plant” invented by the founders of XP Vehicles. Or, without the hot-swap technology, the car can travel up to 300 miles on a single charge, thanks to its light weight. XP Vehicles hopes to have a prototype developed by the end of the year, and will begin working on built-to-order vehicles for its OEM partners only. Later, it plans to sell to dealers, who will assemble the vehicle before selling to consumers. In the future, individuals may also order online, pick out their desired features as if customizing a PC, and receive the car by a common carrier. Options will include iPod mounts, 20 colors, trim, decals, roof/no roof, car covers, solar mounts, stereos, integrated pumps, home connections, GPS, battery clubs, alarms, and more. Two adults with a high school education should be able to unpack and inflate the car in less than two hours, according to the company. And, if you don´t have enough room in the garage, some models even fold up after assembly for storage. Other models “can change bodies” (details on that are sparse).Different models of the car will be made of various polymers, carbon fiber, and/or other strong, ultra-light-weight materials – the same stuff that protected the Mars rovers´ sensitive electronics as they fell and bounced along the planet´s surface. XP Vehicles claims that the car will be one of the safest on the road for drivers, passengers, and pedestrians. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img Citation: Inflatable electric car can drive off cliffs (2008, June 4) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2008-06-inflatable-electric-car-cliffs.html Some of XP Vehicles´ designs in development. The company hopes to have a prototype of the inflatable electric car by the end of the year, with production in 2010 at the earliest. Inflatable decelerator will hitch a ride on the JPSS-2 satellitelast_img read more

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Two Retinal Imaging Display Devices at Prototype Stage

first_imgNEC’s Tele Scouter is not yet capable of translating well enough for business users or travelers, but a version is expected to be released in 2010. This device will be for factory workers and shop employees and will display of information such as operating instructions and diagrams. It may find future application in video games and car navigation systems. Brother also expects to release its device next year. More information: • NEC “Tele Scouter” page (in Japanese)• Brother’s press release and technical information© 2009 PhysOrg.com NEC’s prototype, the “Tele Scouter” consists of an eyeglass frame with a tiny projector and a microphone mounted on it. The microphone picks up the speech and transmits it to a small computer worn on the waist. The computer then converts the speech to text and translates it into the wearer’s own language. A retinal display on the frame then projects the text directly into the wearer’s peripheral vision. This allows the user to maintain eye contact with the other person even while reading the translation.NEC says the device can be used for many hours without causing eye strain because the wearer does not need to focus on the text. Brother’s gadget is so far unnamed and consists of an eyepiece and optical scanner, and a power box that includes a light source comprising blue, red and green laser diodes. The device produces an image at 800 x 600 resolution, which appears to the viewer as an object about 10 cm square and one meter away. Explore further How it works. (PhysOrg.com) — NEC and Brother are both developing wearable prototype devices that use Retinal Imaging Display (RID) technology to project images directly on the wearer’s retina. NEC’s gadget is designed to interpret foreign languages and project a translation onto the retina, making it possible to have a conversation without an interpreter. Brother’s device will project images of documents, allowing the wearer to read them in complete privacy. Brother’s retinal imaging display Conceptual image of the visual field seen through the RID. Citation: Two Retinal Imaging Display Devices at Prototype Stage (2009, October 30) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2009-10-retinal-imaging-devices-prototype-stage.html NEC Develops Speech-to-Speech Translation Software for Mobile Phones NEC’s “Tele Scouter” This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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Tesla coils take on Lady Gaga

first_img Citation: Tesla coils take on Lady Gaga (2011, May 27) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-05-tesla-lady-gaga.html An alternating current, or AC, generates each bolt of lightning. Given that it is an AC current, the bolt has a frequency that the operators can tune to represent different note on a keyboard. They designed a series of microchips and circuits that take a standard MIDI signal and convert it to a fiber optic signal that is sent to the Tesla coils. Another World Record in Magnet Development: 21.1 Tesla, Superconducting NMR Magnet for Chemical and Biomedical Research More information: www.opensparkproject.com/ This 40-minute version contains all the songs as played in the concert. The Open Spark Project put a call out to all musicians last month, inviting them to submit original songs that they could convert into their music light show. Because the Tesla coils are only capable of playing one note at a time, they asked the artists to create songs specifically designed for the coils. In their demonstration videos, where they take on the Lady Gaga hit “Poker Face”, they will take out and perform the melody part with the Tesla coils while playing a backing track to go along with it.On June 11, 2011, they will be performing a live show at the Masonic Auditorium in Cleveland and will be showcasing the original songs from the various artists. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.center_img Explore further (PhysOrg.com) — In an amazing display of lights and sounds, the Open Spark Project and the Tesla Orchestra, formed from researchers at Case Western Reserve University, have taken Tesla coils to a whole new level. Their new Tesla Orchestra uses Tesla coils to covert music into an amazing display of lightning and sound. Poker Face by Lady Gaga, played on one of Tesla Orchestra’s giant musical tesla coils. © 2010 PhysOrg.comlast_img read more

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Entanglement between macroscopic objects generated by dissipation

first_img More information: Hanna Krauter, et al. “Entanglement Generated by Dissipation and Steady State Entanglement of Two Macroscopic Objects.” Physical Review Letters 107, 080503 (2011) DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.107.080503 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Entanglement can help in classical communication Citation: Entanglement between macroscopic objects generated by dissipation (2011, August 25) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-08-entanglement-macroscopic-dissipation.html (PhysOrg.com) — When generating entanglement between two objects, physicists typically try to minimize the objects’ interactions with the environment, since this interaction causes decoherence. But contrary to this thinking, scientists in a new study have experimentally demonstrated that dissipation caused by interaction with the environment can continuously generate entanglement between two macroscopic objects (two ensembles of cesium atoms containing about 1 trillion atoms all together). By combining the dissipative mechanism with continuous measurements, the researchers could achieve steady state entanglement between the two atomic ensembles for up to an hour.center_img Copyright 2011 PhysOrg.com. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed in whole or part without the express written permission of PhysOrg.com. Explore further The scientists, Professor Eugene Polzik from the Niels Bohr Institute at Copenhagen University and his coauthors, have published their study on the new approach to generating entanglement in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters. As the scientists explain, it is the first demonstration of purely dissipative entanglement generation, and could have applications in quantum information processing and other areas.“We have generated entanglement which is ready-to-use at any unspecified instant in time,” Polzik told PhysOrg.com. “This should be a useful feature for applications where complex entangled networks are required. But perhaps even more important is that we have made the first step in showing how entanglement can be generated by dissipation. With this demonstration, other proposals which use dissipation for quantum computing and communication will hopefully attract the attention of experimentalists.”The study builds on previous research over the past few years that has predicted that dissipation that is common to two systems can drive the systems into an entangled state. The idea of using dissipation rather than coherence to generate entanglement represents a paradigm shift in the field, although demonstrating it has proven too difficult until now.To generate entanglement, the scientists placed the two cesium gas samples in 2.2-cm cubic containers in a magnetic field half a meter apart from each other. Through the combination of controlling the magnetic field and using a laser to perform optical pumping of the atoms, the scientists could engineer dissipation between the atomic ensembles and polarized vacuum modes of the electromagnetic field, which provide a common environment.“In the past, dissipation was always a process occurring independently in each of the atoms,” Polzik explained. “In our experiment the dissipation was engineered to be a collective process for both atomic ensembles.“A general feature which leads to generation of quantum superpositions and entanglement is indistinguishability of two or more paths towards the final state,” he said. “In other words, the absence of the so-called ‘which-way information.’ We engineered dissipation for the two atomic ensembles in such a way that it was impossible to tell whether photons which led to dissipation were emitted by the first or the second ensemble. The quantum interference of these two dissipation paths is the key reason for the generation of entanglement.”In the first series of experiments, the scientists generated entanglement in a quasisteady state that lasted for 0.015 seconds, which is several times longer than the best previous results for measurement-induced entanglement. The scientists also experimented with keeping the optical pumping field on throughout the entanglement generation period. Since this process is incoherent, the researchers were surprised to find that the pumping did not suppress entanglement, but rather increased the entanglement duration to 0.04 seconds. Finally, by using the results from continuous measurements on the system, and combining these results with dissipative processes, the researchers could generate steady state entanglement for up to an hour.By demonstrating that dissipation can be used to generate entanglement, the results of the study present a new entanglement method that could have several potential advantages compared with coherence-based methods. For instance, dissipation-generated entanglement can exist, in principle, for an arbitrarily long time and does not require the system to be prepared in a particular input state. These advantages make dissipative methods attractive for use in quantum information protocols by allowing for long-range, high-quality steady state entanglement.last_img read more

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Magnetic cow findings cause row among Google Earth researchers

first_img More information: Cool roofs really can be cool Citation: Magnetic cow findings cause row among Google Earth researchers (2011, November 15) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2011-11-magnetic-cow-row-google-earth.html (PhysOrg.com) — Sometimes, scientists hard at work in their field, come across findings that they cannot explain, and instead of simply writing a paper describing what they’ve seen, they instead choose to write a paper describing what they think their observations have shown. Case in point, back in 2008, a group of guys with Biology and wildlife backgrounds were apparently sitting around looking at pictures taken by Google Earth, when they noticed that there seemed to be a pattern in the way some cows in a pasture aligned themselves. After looking at more pictures, a larger pattern began to emerge. Oddly enough, the cows seemed to be aligning themselves with the Earth’s magnetic field lines. The group, led by Hynek Burda wrote up a paper describing what they’d found and had it published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences. Later, the team did additional research and found that no such kinds of lining up occurred around power lines which they thought might disrupt the cow’s ability to sense magnetic fields. via Nature Explore furthercenter_img Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences When the paper came out, it was followed by a bit of media noise, some of which poked a little bit of fun at the whole idea. Others responded that cows lining up is nothing new, they do it to get the best angle on the sun to help keep warm, or to avoid a cold wind. But to do it based on the Earth’s magnetic field, seemed, well, a little out there.Then, because the whole thing was technically based on science, another group decided this year to see if they could replicate what the first group had found. Unfortunately, this second group failed to find any real good examples to back up the claims made by the first, and said so in their paper published in the Journal of Comparative Physiology A.The first group, clearly annoyed at the findings of the second group, asked to have a look at what they had been looking at in basing their findings, and lo and behold, found, at least to their eyes, all manner of errors, not the least of which was that the second group seemed to be looking at hay bales, barns and other inanimate objects in addition to the cows that were supposed to be the focus of the research. They also found that the second group had apparently been looking at individual cows, rather than at herds overall. This led them to conclude that the work done by the second group was flawed and thus their findings were not valid.The second team then responded by stating rather emphatically that they had not studied inanimate objects but did suggest that the two teams may have been looking at different pictures, which might account for some discrepancies in findings. They also said they won’t be conducting any further research on the topic.Luckily, others have also had a look at the work that both teams did and have done some looking of their own, and most apparently, at least at this point, are siding with the first team, saying that there does indeed seem to be some evidence that shows that cows, for whatever reason, do indeed tend to align themselves with the Earth’s magnetic field lines. Which means, of course, we can all smile inwardly and get on with our day, safe in the knowledge that the world’s scientists are hard at work trying to solve the great mysteries of our time. © 2011 PhysOrg.com This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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Scientists create first 2D electride

first_img The researchers, led by Scott C. Warren, an assistant professor of applied physical sciences and chemistry at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, have published a paper on the demonstration of the 2D electride in a recent issue of the Journal of the American Chemical Society.”Layered electrides have very exciting electronic properties—for example, a conductivity much greater than that of graphene,” Warren told Phys.org. “In the crystal structure of a layered electride, a cloud of electrons is spread out into a flat two-angstrom-thick plane between slabs of atoms. The electrons can conduct through that flat cloud with few interactions with nearby atoms, allowing them to move very quickly.”In their study, the researchers showed that the defining features of electrides—in particular, the electron gas and its properties—are preserved when a layered electride called dicalcium nitride (Ca2N) is synthesized in two-dimensional, single-layer form. The work marks the first synthesis of a 2D electride. “We have isolated a few layers of the crystal, perhaps as thin as a nanometer to several nanometers,” Warren said. “Because of its thinness, this material is called a 2D material, like graphene. An electride as a 2D material had been predicted to be stable in vacuum and to retain its exciting electronic qualities by theoretical calculations, but the material is very reactive and it was an open question whether 2D Ca2N could be made in a lab setting. We showed that in the right chemical environment, the material is stable for long periods of time without compromising its exciting electronic properties.”As the researchers explained, separating the multilayered electride into its individual layers was challenging since electrides have strong electrostatic interactions that hold their layers together. Electrides also have a high chemical reactivity that further complicates matters, preventing the use of the “Scotch-tape method” for exfoliation since electrides decompose when coming into contact with certain adhesives.Instead, the researchers used liquid exfoliation, which uses chemical reactions to produce large numbers of nanosheets suspended in solution. After testing 30 solvents, the researchers found one solvent in which the Ca2N nanosheets remain in a stable suspension for at least a month. Tests showed that the 2D electride nanosheets have high electrical conductivity comparable to aluminum metal, high transparency (a 10-nm-thick film transmits 97% of light), and—due to the 2D form—the highest surface area for any electride reported to date. By combining the high surface area of 2D materials with the unusual electrical properties of electrides, the researchers expect that the 2D electride will lead to many more discoveries in the future. Potential applications include transparent conductors, battery electrodes, electron emitters, and catalysts for chemical synthesis.”The potential application that excites us the most is in advanced batteries, which is the focus of our current collaboration with the Honda Research Institute,” Warren said. “There are other exciting potential applications too, for example as transparent conductive films. From an academic perspective, this work opens up synthetic routes to study 2D electrides experimentally and to test potential applications that we haven’t even considered yet.”In the future, the researchers plan to further explore the potential applications of electrides and address the practical challenges in realizing them.”We have a lot to learn about electrides as 2D materials,” Warren said. “For example, how can we coat or functionalize the surface to make electrides stable in air?” (Phys.org)—Researchers have brought electrides into the nanoregime by synthesizing the first 2D electride material. Electrides are ionic compounds, which are made of negative and positive ions. But in electrides, the negative “ions” are simply electrons, with no nucleus. The electrons are very close to each other and very loosely bound, causing them to act as an electron gas. This electron gas gives electrides certain electrical properties, such as a high electrical mobility and rapid electrical transport, that are very attractive for electronics applications. © 2017 Phys.org Scientists have synthesized the first 2D electride, a material with an electron gas containing loosely bound electrons. Credit: Druffel et al. ©2016 American Chemical Society More information: Daniel Druffel et al. “Experimental Demonstration of an Electride as a 2D Material.” Journal of the American Chemical Society. DOI: 10.1021/jacs.6b10114 Explore furthercenter_img Journal information: Journal of the American Chemical Society Electron anions impart unconventional properties in a unique cement semiconductor Citation: Scientists create first 2-D electride (2017, January 11) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-01-scientists-d-electride.html This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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3D printing glass objects

first_img Journal information: Nature Citation: 3-D printing glass objects (2017, April 20) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2017-04-d-glass.html Over the past several years 3-D printing has taken off as printers have improved and prices have fallen. Objects made by such printers have become common across the globe, from research institutes to hobbyist’s garages. But despite its popularity, such printers have had one glaring weakness—an inability to print glass objects—3-D printers of today print objects made of plastics, ceramics and even metal, but not glass, which is a shame, the researchers note, because materials made of them offer many advantages such as resistance to thermal and chemical damage. And of course, they are transparent. But now, it appears that has changed, as the team in Germany has found a way to print glass objects using ordinary 3-D printers.The new technique allows for 3-D printing glass objects based on the creation of a “liquid glass” the team developed—a glass nanocomposite with glass nanoparticles suspended in a photocurable prepolymer. In practice, the sandy glass nanoparticles are mixed into a liquid solution and the results are then used as the “ink” for the printer. Once printed in the traditional way, the glass object is transferred to an oven that cures the glass and burns off other extraneous materials. The result is an object made of pure, clear glass. © 2017 Phys.org A microfluidic Tesla mixer cascade chip generated by three-dimensional printing in fused silica glass. Credit: NeptunLab/KIT Explore further A three-dimensional pretzel generated by three-dimensional printing in fused silica glass. Credit: NeptunLab/KIT More information: Frederik Kotz et al. Three-dimensional printing of transparent fused silica glass, Nature (2017). DOI: 10.1038/nature22061AbstractGlass is one of the most important high-performance materials used for scientific research, in industry and in society, mainly owing to its unmatched optical transparency, outstanding mechanical, chemical and thermal resistance as well as its thermal and electrical insulating properties. However, glasses and especially high-purity glasses such as fused silica glass are notoriously difficult to shape, requiring high-temperature melting and casting processes for macroscopic objects or hazardous chemicals for microscopic features. These drawbacks have made glasses inaccessible to modern manufacturing technologies such as three-dimensional printing (3D printing). Using a casting nanocomposite5, here we create transparent fused silica glass components using stereolithography 3D printers at resolutions of a few tens of micrometres. The process uses a photocurable silica nanocomposite that is 3D printed and converted to high-quality fused silica glass via heat treatment. The printed fused silica glass is non-porous, with the optical transparency of commercial fused silica glass, and has a smooth surface with a roughness of a few nanometres. By doping with metal salts, coloured glasses can be created. This work widens the choice of materials for 3D printing, enabling the creation of arbitrary macro- and microstructures in fused silica glass for many applications in both industry and academia. This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Molten glass 3-D printer produces optically transparent glass A three-dimensional structure of a castle gate printed in fused silica glass. Credit: NeptunLab/KIT The researchers note that the size and precision of the objects printed are limited only by the precision of the printer used, just as with other 3-D printed objects. To demonstrate their new technique, the researchers printed tiny pretzels and an equally tiny castle and a honeycomb. They suggest the new technique could be used to produce both very large and very small glass objects, from skyscraper facades to tiny camera lenses. They note also that they believe that one day, most people will own a 3-D printer, and because of that, may choose to fashion their own glass objects, such as fine glassware or ornate windows. Credit: Kotz et al. Honeycomb structure printed in fused silica glass exposed to a flame of 800 °C showing the high thermal shock resistance of the printed glass part. Credit: NeptunLab/KIT (Phys.org)—A team of researchers at Karlsruhe Institute of Technology in Germany has developed a way to 3-D print objects made of pure glass. In their paper published in the journal Nature, the group describes their technique and the ways they believe their new approach could be used. Karl Ziemelis, Physical, Chemical and Earth Sciences editor for Nature offers a News & Views piece on the work done by the team in the same edition. A three-dimensional pretzel generated by three-dimensional printing in fused silica glass. Credit: NeptunLab/KIT Honeycomb structure printed in fused silica glass exposed to a flame of 800 °C showing the high thermal shock resistance of the printed glass part. Credit: NeptunLab/KITlast_img read more

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Study shows babies expect fairness in resource sharing

first_img Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences Explore further Most people have some feelings of fairness, both for themselves and others. If a group is presented with a resource, most expect it to be shared equally. Dividing a pie, for example, into small enough slices so that everyone gets a piece, is standard behavior. But is the feeling of fairness in our genes or is it something we learn? To learn more, the researchers enlisted the assistance of 120 babies (and parents) between the ages of 18 to 30 months—each was positioned to watch a very short puppet show.The puppet shows all started off with two puppets; one a giraffe, the other a monkey. Then, another monkey puppet entered the scene bearing a tray which held cookies. In some scenarios, there were two cookies on the tray and in others there were three. The monkey with the tray doled out the cookies as he saw fit. As the cookies were doled out, the researchers watched the faces of the baby volunteers—prior research has shown that they tend to stare longer when watching something that doesn’t correspond with how they feel something should be.In studying their data, the researchers found that when there were three cookies, the babies stared longer if the monkey doled the cookies out unfairly, such as eating all the cookies himself or if he only shared with one of the puppets. But, things changed when the monkey only brought two cookies. This time, the babies stared longer if one of the cookies was given to the giraffe, instead of the other monkey, suggesting that fairness in this case meant sharing only with those that are like you when resources are scarce.The researchers report that their results were not a surprise to them—prior research has hinted at changes in behavior in babies when unequal resources are at stake. © 2018 Phys.org A team of researchers with Stanford University and the University of Illinois has conducted a study based on testing fairness in babies and has found that they expect fairness in resource sharing, except when resources are scarce. In their paper published Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the group outlines their experiments and describe their results. Credit: CC0 Public Domaincenter_img More information: Lin Bian et al. Infants expect ingroup support to override fairness when resources are limited, Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences (2018). DOI: 10.1073/pnas.1719445115 This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Babies know what’s fair Citation: Study shows babies expect fairness in resource sharing (2018, February 27) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-02-babies-fairness-resource.htmllast_img read more

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Turning poetry to stone

first_imgEternal things are neither conventional nor unconventional. They are always fresh and new as truth is always fresh and relevant, believes artiste Girjesh  Singh. Singh will be displaying his work in the Capital.Singh is not concerned with temporary social causes but he looks into the internal spaces.  He lives and travels in his thoughts.  Life’s internal aspects appeal to him and its undying spirit keeps him going.  He is looking for what finally matters – a manifestation of reality, and that is why it is so individualistic.  Whenever he senses a bit of that reality, however brief, he tries to express it through his work. The brief nature of that contact is expressed in the title of his show, Often I Miss You. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Singh’s works represent his thoughts, often inspired by the great Indian mystic, Kabir. Taking inspiration from Kabir, the artiste displays his thoughts through his own, unique language.  He believes in keeping his own identity and experiencing Kabir’s philosophy through one’s own person.The medium of work inspires him first. He has chosen stone and brick – conventional and unconventional mediums for sculpture.  They are close to his heart as he grew up with these materials. Singh believes that conventionally an idea needs to be expressed in a material but unconventionally a material provides its own idea or story. Stone is a traditional medium and brick comes up as the unconventional one. He says, ‘A lot has been done in stone and it’s a challenge, but there is still some story.  When I see brick with cement I feel the brick carries its identity even when taken out of its structure’. Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with NetflixHis center piece, Jhini re bini which is inspired by Kabir’s poem, where he compares life to a sheet or a covering, which is soaked in the identity of God. His work also focuses on the five elements: earth, water, air, fire and space.  The pillars have an expression of an element on the outside and on the inside, have a script with alphabets and symbols that have been inspired by various civilizations from all over the world.  At the seat of each pillar sits a lotus that shows how nature has bestowed all four elements in this one magnificent flower. He believes that the fifth element (ether, akasa or divinity as one may interpret it) cannot be understood in mere human terms; it represents, ‘The All’.Singh’s work process is way lot more than just hammers and chisels. The creative process starts with his developing his style for carving. He wanted to make a work of epic proportions on the elements which effectively showcased his philosophy. We say, don’t miss this one.WHEN: 28 January to 2 FebruaryWHERE: Visual Arts Gallery, India Habitat Centrelast_img read more

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Every story has to be retold

first_imgHow did you start writing? Did you always want to write?It was the passion to be a story teller that pushed me into writing. I have always believed that words make the best impact in a person’s life, I felt its one of the most simplest way to contribute to the society. Also being an entrepreneur induces a spirit to pursue dreams.   How did the idea of the book come to you?Actually, the story began while trying to fit mythology into the head of a current gen kid. While narrating a dramatic tale, I began to think for making it as a script / screen play. Eventually felt the book will give me more flexibility to write my views. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’ How and why did you pick Ramayana?The story is not the Ramayana, it uses the epic to convey a lateral plot that is hidden from the common eye. How much truth or fiction is there in the legend of the crystal and the connection to the epic? Crystals are no strangers to humans, especially in India. Our deities to the British invaders, have fought for them. India was a very rich country, it had several treasures. Be it the syamantaka gem or the kohinoor, our flirtation with the gems and crystals is as old as the nation itself. Some of these treasures have been looted or stolen, the epic goes behind a few of those which rightfully belong to the nation. What the crystal is, would be an ‘aha’ moment over the trilogy. In the end, it will all be connected.  Also Read – Leslie doing new comedy special with Netflix How does the story pan out after the first book? Does is stray from the original epic or does it remain faithful?The story begins deviating from the second half of Book I. And as it reaches book III, it shows something what we have not thought about. The goal is to have the reader wonder, question and think if they have been led to systematically believe something far. That is the impact I hope to present. Have you taken liberties in character formations? If so why…and how do you think your readers will react to it (or how have the reacted to it already)?  Yes, each character seen from the protagonist view makes a big difference in their treatment. As this is a lateral story, it falls into the larger trilogy. So far the reviews have welcomed the changes to the fable. Why do you think the legend of Ram and Lakshman needed to be retold/recreated?It’s not just the story of Ram & Lakshman, I believe every story has to be retold. That’s the way stories evolve. Currently much of the younger gen reads western fantasy, it’s the duty of Indian writers to get them back to the Indian fold. Many stories of the west adapt Indian myth concepts and deploy them successfully into riveting tales. Our tales have inspired many and have such profound meaning that it is the nation’s duty to reinstate it to the glorious past. If our stories need to survive the western onslaught, and have an audience in this nation they must evolve from slow moving static chariots and lengthy dialogues to a fast paced futuristic action. Indian mythology, is so beautiful and intense that it’s easy to add science into it. I believe these epics must be seen with a view to the future than to making them more historic past. Futuristic imagination must be kindled using stories helping younger gen kids innovate and place India on top of the world, yet again! What inspired you?My daughter has quite inspired me a lot, other than that, mostly its Indian culture, history and beauty that inspires me. What projects are you planning next?I am working on a historical thriller with a message based on the Mahmud of Ghazni’s invasion.last_img read more

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That Jazzy mood

first_imgKeeping up with the spirit of music, International Jazz Day was marked with great live jazz performances that enthralled their audience and created a perfect night full of musical revelry at Ccoktail and Dreams Speakeasy on 30 April.The evening marked the performances of Syncopation, Drift the Trio and Taka Trio. Syncopation, the Contemporary Jazz and Funk band has been playing since 2007. They play an eclectic mix of Modern Jazz blended with elements of funk, swing and bebop. The music is centred on soulful melodies with modern funky grooves leading into frenzied improvisations. Their repertoire consists of original music which projects the band’s attitude and approach to Jazz as the evolving art form it is. Their performances have been described as being soulful, energetic and inspired by the moment. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’Drift is a contemporary jazz guitar trio from Delhi. The band has performed both, as a trio as well as a part of larger setups featuring vocalists, saxophonists and other instrumentalists from around the world. Led by drummer Reuben Narain, the band’s music is an eclectic mix of modern music styles like Funk, RnB, Fusion etc. with the compositional vision and improvisational styles of jazz greats like John Coltrane, Chick Corea, Thelonious Monk and Pat Metheny.Takatrio is an instrumental jazz trio that was started by Takar Nabam. All the three members connects them all is their taste for instrumental jazz and other styles of improvised music. The trio plays a mix of traditional jazz and some Latin jazz in a more modern context.last_img read more

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HIL Dhoni buys Ranchi franchise

first_imgAfter motorsports and football, Indian cricket team captain Mahendra Singh Dhoni has now lent his support to Indian hockey by becoming the owner of the Ranchi franchise of the Hockey India League (HIL). Dhoni bought the team along with Sahara India Pariwar, who already is the owner of the Uttar Pradesh Wizards side in the HIL. The new Ranchi franchise will be known as ‘Ranchi Rays’ from third edition of HHIL to be held in January-February next year. Dhoni, a proud son of the city, himself was present on the occasion and unveiled the team logo and jersey at a posh city hotel here. The previous Ranchi franchise known as Ranchi Rhinos, who were the inaugural champions of HHIL, was scrapped following a distrust between previous owners Patel-PS Group and Uniexcel Group and league organisers Hockey India (HI).last_img read more

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China ups market access for foreign banks

first_imgChina has eased the rules which will provide market access for foreign banks, in a move to further open up the domestic banking sector. The Chinese Cabinet published the amended rules on Saturday, which will no longer require a specific amount of operating funds to be transferred from the parent foreign bank to its newly established Chinese branch.Previously, a foreign bank would have to unconditionally allocate at least 100 million yuan ($16.4 million) or the same value in other freely-convertible currencies. The requirement has had a restrictive impact on capital replenishing at foreign banks’ China branches.Meanwhile, direct capital injection from parent firms to their branches too would be treated as FDI, which often involved a complicated approval process from multiple government agencies, state-run Xinhua news agency reported.last_img read more

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WBSU bags place in list of best public varsities in Bengal

first_imgKolkata: For the first time in its 10 year history, West Bengal State University at Barasat has made it to the comprehensive list of the best public varsities in Bengal. The rating by Careers360, which happens to be the country’s largest higher education and career counselling portal, is widely popular among students and helps them to decide which institutions should be targeted for degree program admissions in the state.WBSU, with an overall score of 148.26, has bagged the AAA (Above Average) rating and is one of the newest varsities in the country to have figured in the list. “We are excited and encouraged as this rating has put us in public domain and has showed that WBSU has the potential to excel in academics,” said Basab Chaudhuri, vice-chancellor of WBSU. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsInterestingly, WBSU’s rating is only next to the 62-year-old North Bengal University, which has an overall score of 148.65. Presidency University, with an overall score of 158.08, is only a few steps ahead of WBSU. It may be mentioned that the ranking/rating of Careers360 is based on factors like quality of students, research output, industry interface, referenced publications and academic productivity. The information provided by the portal is based on in-depth research and backed by authenticated data. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedWBSU, since its inception in 2008, had been embroiled in administrative red-tapism and had its first convocation only in 2017. The inordinate delay in the publication of results was one of the major problems in the varsity. After Chaudhuri took over as V-C in September 2015, he streamlined the examination process and results were published without delay. Questions were also raised over the efficiency of the previous vice-chancellor Jyoti Prakash Basu, which had led to his removal in 2015.WBSU presently has as many as 46 colleges in North 24-Parganas affiliated to it. There are as many as 30 departments in the varsity and all traditional subjects taught in Calcutta University are taught in WBSU as well. There are as many as 1.5 lakh students pursuing various courses in the university.last_img read more

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Now click photos inside Victoria Gallery

first_imgKolkata: To facilitate those who visit Victoria Memorial Hall, the authorities have broken the century old tradition and allowed them to take photographs inside the gallery. The Victoria Memorial was constructed between 1906 and 1921. Since the very beginning photography inside the gallery was prohibited.Jayanta Sengupta, Curator and Secretary Victoria Memorial said from May 15 visitors have been allowed to take photos inside the gallery. However, they are not allowed to use flash and tripod. Using flash light might affect the photographs many of which are more than a century old. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsThe visitors are taking photographs on their cell phones and uploading them on social media channels. This will increase the footfall of one of the finest architectures in India. Many people who have not visited Kolkata but have heard about Victoria Memorial can now see the photographs of the gallery. Hundreds and thousands of students of History from all over the globe visit the place. The new system was introduced from May 15 and in the past 10 days, despite high temperature, the footfall is impressive and most of the visitors in the gallery took photos. To ensure smooth visit of the people, the authorities have introduced online booking and two ticket ATMs have been installed. Particularly in winters, when there is heavy rush of domestic and foreign tourists, the visitors no longer have to wait for hours to buy tickets.last_img read more

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Assocham for implementation of model guidelines on direct selling by states

first_imgKolkata: Leading industry body Assocham has appealed to the government to advise all states for speedy implementation of Model Direct Selling Guidelines issued by the consumer affairs ministry in September 2016. Assocham’s direct tax force on direct selling had written to the consumer affairs minister Ram Vilas Paswan stating that after 18 months of issuance of these guidelines, the industry has not seen much progress in their implementation. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flights Some of the states such as Sikkim, Telengana, Chhattisgarh and Andhra Pradesh have implemented the guidelines while most of the states are yet to adopt them, Assocham said in a statement. The guidelines would recognise the sector and remove the misconception about the industry as a pyramid and money circulation schemes. According to The Indian Direct Selling Association (IDSA), the number of direct sellers has witnessed a considerable increase to 5.1 million in 2016-17 from four million in 2015-16. Vijay Saldana, chairman of the Task Force on Direct Selling, said, “If the Government ensures speedy implementation of the guidelines, it will result in creating over 10 million entrepreneurs by 2020.”last_img read more

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Hawkers in city to be surveyed before grant of licences

first_imgKolkata: Officials from Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC), Kolkata Police and representatives from the Hawker Sangram Committee will jointly conduct a survey of hawkers in the city. The decision was taken at the meeting of the Town Vending Committee at KMC headquarters on Friday.The committee has been formed by the state government to have a survey of hawkers in the city and issue licences to them, according to the West Bengal Urban Street Vendors (Protection of Livelihood and Regulation of Street Vending) Rules, 2018. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life”The joint committee will soon start the survey and accordingly, we will come up with the hawker policy,” said Member, Mayor-in- Council (Parking) Debasish Kumar, who chaired the meeting. It may be mentioned that hawkers are banned from doing business on roads and are required to leave two-thirds of every pavement they occupy, to let pedestrians walk comfortably. Kolkata Police had already done a survey of the hawkers. However, the Hawker Sangram Committee had raised objections over the exercise and demanded their inclusion while conducting the survey. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed”We expressed our inhibitions over the single party survey as we feel that there may be deprivation of a section of hawkers,” said Saktiman Ghosh, president of the Hawker Sangram Committee. The job of the Town Vending Committee will be to draw up a list of vending and no-vending zones. A no-vending zone would typically include a bus stop, a small pavement and a narrow street or lane. “Road width, traffic flow and pedestrian movement in a particular area will be taken into consideration during the survey. It will take around five months to complete the process,” Ghosh said.last_img read more

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Healthy tea gourmet jams Gifts to give with wedding invites

first_imgDitch the typical sweet boxes which are heavy and unhealthy and replace them with healthy varieties of tea, gourmet jams or gold plated idols of gods alongwith your wedding invites, experts suggest.Here are few ideas that are worth your attention:Cookies are the most comforting companions in both good and bad times. There cannot be a better treat to send out with your wedding invites. Chocolate, peanut butter, caramel, pecan to brownie, there are many variants you can take your pick from. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfGift your guests artisanal variety of chocolates which are also known as craft chocolates. These are prepared with the finest ingredients, sourced and handpicked from various parts of the country. These chocolates are available in many trendy flavours and festive packaging that is sure to leave your guests wanting for more.With the people becoming conscious about their health, gift your special guests some tea varieties. Select 4-5 varieties of teas to gift alongwith with the invitation cards. There are packages as per their preference and the size of the invite card. You can opt for the mint matcha tea, cinnamon matcha tea, turmeric tea, rose delight, Assam masala, mumbai cutting and also some lavender tea. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveCleopatra inspired ornate gold photo frame gives a touch of personalisation as people can actually put the pictures of bride and groom or a personal message from the bride and groom in the frame. It adds sentimental value and can be used as a lamp later.If you are feeling a bit more extravagant, 24 carat gold plated god figures on marble dust are the best. This is something people will never pass on and keep it at the most beautiful place at home and it will create recall value.Flavoured gourmet jams are range of premium jams available in unique flavour combinations like banana, whiskey, orange, mango, jalepeno and all handmade in small batches, from scratch, using all-natural ingredients and no preservatives or additives. Let no adulterated preserve taint your beautiful day.last_img read more

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Homegrown Indian literature has come into its own

first_imgBestselling author Chetan Bhagat, who has had his fair share of criticism by readers and writers of literary novels, says that there is a lot of “elitism” in Indian literary circles. He asserted that “there are no benchmarks in India” and that he doesn’t have to prove his credentials to anybody. “When I began writing, the entire (publishing) industry was focussed on literary kind of books, books that are seen by literature experts as having a certain elitist language. Those were the kinds of books being published, and were being written to win awards like the Booker Prize. I think homegrown Indian literature has now come into its own as there are ample of books by Indian writers,” Bhagat said. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf”There is a lot of elitism in India. The elites like to look down upon the mere locals, it’s like a colonial kind of hangover that is particularly there in literature. So when it comes to books, the ‘Khan Market books’ are all good and everything else is trash. While they are great, I am not saying they are not, but if I am aspiring to be a pan-India writer, then I must make sure that a reader in Guwahati also understands and relates to my work. They are looking for stories and content that they can relate to,” he elaborated. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveBhagat said he attempts to connect with all readers by including little nuggets of contemporary day-to-day life in his stories. “For example: Today whole lot of things happen on Instagram and Whatsapp. My new book has a lot of that, this wasn’t there in my previous books. Even in ‘Revolution 2020’, the characters were still using Google chat but the world has moved on and that is what I try to do in my books; write what the readers can relate to,” he quipped. But his fallout with New Delhi based Rupa publications, which had published all his books so far, sent signals that ‘Three Mistakes of My Life’ writer’s readership was on a decline. Bhagat refuted the charge saying that he has had “an expansion in readership”. “It has increased the distribution in tier two and tier three towns. There were times when my readers used to write to me that they would go to the railway station to buy my books,” the 44-year-old said. “There are no bookstores that sell novels and general reading books in smaller towns and so I think the e-commerce websites has been the game changer. Having said this, the expansion of online stores has also led to the closing down of many physical bookstores and with the growing spread of internet, people are more and more drawn towards video content than actually reading. Still I am confident that there is ample space for reading. You can have lifts and escalators but there will be always be stairs.” “If a certain elite section looks down upon my books, it speaks for their own insecurity. People who really have credibility, even if they are elite, like my books. Amitabh Ghosh, Shashi Tharoor and even late Leila Seth praised my books. I write in a simple way, I add humour, I write about relationships that are similar to what people are having today and I introduce some national issues in it,” he added. “I don’t have to prove my credentials. There was a time when people would always remind me what trolls were telling about me. It used to bother me but I am over it now. If somebody has done well, and has been consistent, then you cannot dismiss that by insulting him. You can’t take away my achievement,” he asserted.last_img read more

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Delhi Tourism hosts threeday winter carnival in the Capital

first_imgDelhi Tourism adds to the Christmas cheer with Winter Carnival at Dilli Haat Janakpuri, Dilli Haat Pitampura and Garden of Five Senses from December 23-25. Christmas themed ambience, shopping street and special performances are organised as a part of the event, at the three venues, offering a unique Delhi winter experience. Keeping in mind that winters are best to head out with family and friends, exploring the city, Delhi Tourism is offering an experience of the Christmas festivities as one indulges in variety of authentic and mouth watering food at the three venues.Dilli Haat Pitampura will offer unique handicrafts stalls for Christmas gifting along with various other items. On the other hand, Dilli Haat Janakpuri will host Christmas Carols and other cultural performances in the evening. Some special performances are being organised at Garden of Five Senses with artists like Kamal Gill and Maninder Mahi performing on December 25 from 3 pm to 6 pm.last_img read more

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