China History India Life Social

Fifty Years in Tibet

A half-century after the Lhasa uprising, it’s time for China to learn from its past mistakes. China has little to lose and much to gain from engaging in serious talks. The Dalai Lama alone is capable of uniting Tibetans behind an agreement with the Chinese government, and at 73, may not be around much longer to seal a deal. China may think that it can hold on until he passes. But the Dalai Lama is the voice of moderation, while the younger generation is pushing for independence and a more radical approach.

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China History India Life Social

Could China and India go to war over Tibet?

Contrary to Chinese propaganda, Tibet was not traditionally a part of China. Over the centuries, relations between China and Tibet were characterized by varying degrees of association spanning the spectrum from sovereignty to suzerainty to independence. The People’s Liberation Army invaded Tibet in the middle of the last century precisely because Tibetans did not consent to Beijing’s rule.

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Education Health Life Science Social

Older fathers link to child brain

The age at which men and women are having children is increasing in the developed world. But while the effect of increasing maternal age on reduced fertility is widely known, the impact of increased paternal age is not as well established. However, older fathers have been linked to a range of health problems, including an increased risk of birth deformities and neuropsychiatric conditions, such as schizophrenia, autism and bipolar disorder.

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Business Education Finance Innovation Life Productivity Science Technology

Introducing Wolfram Alpha…

Stephen Wolfram is building something new — and it is really impressive and significant. In fact it may be as important for the Web (and the world) as Google, but for a different purpose. In a nutshell, Wolfram and his team have built what he calls a “computational knowledge engine” for the Web. OK, so what does that really mean? Basically it means that you can ask it factual questions and it computes answers for you.

Where Google is a system for FINDING things that we as a civilization collectively publish, Wolfram Alpha is for ANSWERING questions about what we as a civilization collectively know. It’s the next step in the distribution of knowledge and intelligence around the world — a new leap in the intelligence of our collective “Global Brain.” And like any big next-step, Wolfram Alpha works in a new way — it computes answers instead of just looking them up.

Read the article: Wolfram Alpha Computes Answers To Factual Questions. This Is Going To Be Big.

Business Education Health Innovation Life Science Technology

Bionic eye gives blind man sight

The Bionic eye uses a camera and video processor mounted on sunglasses to send captured images wirelessly to a tiny receiver on the outside of the eye. In turn, the receiver passes on the data via a tiny cable to an array of electrodes which sit on the retina – the layer of specialised cells that normally respond to light found at the back of the eye. When these electrodes are stimulated they send messages along the optic nerve to the brain, which is able to perceive patterns of light and dark spots corresponding to which electrodes have been stimulated.

The hope is that patients will learn to interpret the visual patterns produced into meaningful images.

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Business Education Finance Life Science Social

Scalable vs. Non-Scalable Careers

Professions where you are paid by the hour are not scalable. A prostitute who charges $100 an hour only has 24 hours in a day. At some point, she will hit a ceiling on her earnings. Similarly, dentists, lawyers, contractors, bakers, and consultants can see only so many clients at a time.

By contrast, scalable professions allow you to make more money without an equivalent increase in labor / time. An author writes a book one time and his effort is the (basically) the same whether he sells 500 or 500,000 copies. A Hollywood actress need not show up at every screening of her movie to make money off it.

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Business Education Finance Innovation Life Productivity Science Technology

Simulating crowd behaviour

The simulation of the behaviour of crowds of people and swarms of animals (not just mythological ones) is also being applied to many other unusual situations, from designing better closed-circuit television (CCTV) security systems to managing the traffic of ships in harbours. The same technology has also been used to improve the understanding of archaeological ruins and to model entire ecosystems in order to design wildlife-management strategies.

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Education Health Life Nature Science Social

Are bad sleeping habits driving us mad?

Take anyone with a psychiatric disorder and the chances are they don’t sleep well. The result of their illness, you might think. Now this long-standing assumption is being turned on its head, with the radical suggestion that poor sleep might actually cause some psychiatric illnesses or lead people to behave in ways that doctors mistake for mental problems. The good news is that sleep treatments could help or even cure some of these patients.

Read the article: Are bad sleeping habits driving us mad?