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Only 30% Indians say there is mask compliance, 56% say social distancing not followed: Survey

Only 30 per cent of Indians believe there is mask compliance in their city, district or area they live in while only 12 per cent say social distancing norms are followed, according to a recent survey. The findings of the Local Circles titled ‘India becoming complacent against COVID-19’, which was released Wednesday, were based on 8,321 responses across 238 districts in India. This comes as states like Maharashtra, Kerala, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Punjab have a spike in Covid-19 cases over the past week. A meeting was at the Prime Minister’s Office Tuesday to review the surge of infections and the detection of virus mutations in some states. Though India saw a in its coronavirus active case count Tuesday, more than 10,000 new infections were detected from across the country in the last 24 hours, with Maharashtra accounting for nearly half of the cases and stirring of a second lockdown.........Read more

A peek into Jharkhand's mica mines where child labour & illegal mining are no secret

For generations, families living in the Koderma and Giridih districts of Jharkhand have survived on the collection and trade of mica — a shimmery, translucent mineral used in cosmetics and automobiles. The mining of mica was once a legal, thriving business that made India the biggest exporter of the mineral. But concerns about mining causing environmental damage led to the passage of the Forest Conservation Act of 1980, which bars non-forest activities, such as mining, from taking place in forested areas without clearances from the central government. The mica mining industry is still operational — but it has taken a different shape. Corporations have been replaced by unlicensed middle men, and labourers scavenge for mica in large abandoned mines, or dig holes into the earth for scraps.........Read more

Earth's magnetic field broke down 42,000 years ago, triggering extinctions & climate crisis

Rings on ancient trees in New Zealand have revealed that the Earth’s magnetic field temporarily broke down 42,000 years ago, sparking major climactic shifts that led to global environmental change and mass extinctions. A new study by Australian researchers has revealed a dramatic turning point in Earth’s history, which was marked with electrical storms, widespread aurorae (natural electrical phenomenon characterised by the appearance of reddish or greenish light in the sky) and cosmic radiation. This period is being called the ‘Adams Transitional Geomagnetic Event’, or ‘Adams Event’, in a tribute to noted science fiction author Douglas Adams, who wrote The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy.  While scientists already knew the magnetic poles temporarily flipped around 41-42,000 years ago, they did not know exactly how it impacted life on Earth.........Read more

How to use design thinking to create a happier life for yourself

This post is part of TED’s “How to Be a Better Human” series, each of which contains a piece of helpful advice from people in the TED community; browse through  Design thinking is something that we’ve been working on at the Stanford Design School and in the School of Engineering for over 50 years. It’s an innovation methodology that works on services and products and experiences, such as designing a great-looking sports car or a laptop that contains its own built-in mouse. But I think the most interesting design problem is your life.........Read more

Your Credit Card Transactions May Have Been At Serious Risk Because Of A Man With An Android App

There are two ways in which you can make a Credit card or a debit card transaction at a physical store or shop. There is the contactless tap and pay method, which is now applicable for transactions up to Rs 5,000 in India. The second is that you punch in a PIN for your credit card on the payment terminal, to complete the transaction. Now, it turns out, all that hackers may need is an Android app that can plug into the card machine and give it the false indication that no PIN is required. The researchers at ETH Zurich, or Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule Zürich, have indicated that credit cards that are Mastercard or Maestro, can be prone to bypass methods. Earlier, this method also worked on Visa credit and debit cards.........Read more

There Is A Big Difference Between Health And Fitness, And The Apple Watch Defines It Seamlessly

Fitness wearables and smartwatches continue to be quite interesting for potential buyers, in terms of the health tracking and monitoring capabilities they continue to offer. It’s a pretty competitively fought space, but not many wearables do the tracking and guiding bit much better than the . If you’ve bought a new Apple Watch or are considering spending on one, you must know that there’s a lot to the Watch beyond what you may hear or read the most about. That is, there’s a whole range of fitness tracking capabilities that should help you keep track of how much you’re sweating, monitor your heart rate range during activity and even share workouts with friends. We do not yet have the Apple Fitness+ service in India just yet, but worry not, because the Apple Watch does a very good job of guiding you and being the bad cop when you slack off.........Read more

Best out of waste: Professor forms team, transforms metal scrap into pieces of art

In an attempt to encourage recycling of electronic and automobile waste, Prof Srinivas has been designing sculptures from scrap. An artist making a breathtaking sculpture from scrap in Tirupati. (Photo | Madhav K, EPS) Nothing in this world is useless. Believing in this concept, a professor has been turning scrap into pieces of art. Professor Srinivas Padakandla, HoD, Fine Arts in the University College of Architecture and Planning, Acharya Nagarjuna University, Guntur, has been transforming recycled automobile metal scrap into sculptures. In an attempt to encourage recycling of electronic and automobile waste, Prof Srinivas has been designing sculptures from scrap. His models were appreciated and installed in many cities. The professor has worked in Andhra Pradesh, Tamil Nadu and Odisha. Currently, Prof Srinivas is in Tirupati busy making breathtaking sculptures out of scrap.........Read more

Over 7,000 coronavirus mutations in India, many have serious risks: Scientist

There are more than 7,000 coronavirus mutations in India of which some could pose a serious risk, a senior scientist said on Monday. Rakesh Mishra, Director of the Council for Scientific and Industrial Research,Centre for Cellular and Molecular Biology, said among the variants, N440K is spreading a lot more in the southern states. The CCMB alone has done an exhaustive analysis of over 5,000 coronavirus variants in India and how they have evolved over the course of the pandemic. An Indian perspective on sequencing viral variants".........Read more

Netflix can now automatically download videos it thinks you’ll like

Human-centric AI news and analysis A new feature downloads recommended shows based on your tastes Netflix today unveiled a new way of binging on TV shows while you’re offline. The streaming giant has launched a new opt-in feature that automatically downloads new content the app infers you’ll like. “Downloads For You” uses data from your viewing history to find new shows and films that match your tastes. It then downloads the content to your mobile device when it’s connected to a Wi-Fi network. The feature is currently only available on Android, but Netflix will soon test it on iOS.........Read more

The Historical Importance of India's Cartography Reforms

The liberalization of the geospatial sector promises to transform this crucial technological cluster. Its importance is clearer if one appreciates the wider historical context. Last week, the government of India announced far reaching liberalization of the cartography and geospatial sector. This is a major step towards enhancing indigenous capacity in this crucial sector by allowing private sector greater space to innovate as well as opening it up, with some restrictions, to international players to invest onshore. For hundreds of years, cartography has been at the cutting edge of technological innovation, and its military, geostrategic and commercial importance cannot be emphasized enough. Therefore, in order to understand the significance of the new policy, it is important to know the history of cartography. The Age of European Rivalry........Read more

How rich is Saudi Arabia? Kingdom does the math in balance sheet overhaul

Saudi Arabia wants to demystify its finances. The kingdom is working on creating a consolidated balance sheet of its assets and liabilities which will include items currently kept off the oil-rich economy's books, including the investments and debts of its powerful sovereign wealth fund. \"The main purpose of this programme is to have a financial equivalent of an MRI of the government balance sheet,\" a Finance Ministry spokesman told Reuters, adding that it would include assets and liabilities that are currently \"off-balance sheet\". Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince and de facto ruler Mohammed bin Salman has put Public Investment Fund (PIF), Saudi Arabia's main sovereign wealth fund, at the centre of reforms aimed at diversifying the economy of the world's top oil exporter away from fossil fuel.........Read more

Meet Sikari Tisso, the man on a life-long mission to document the Karbi language

In the early 2000s, when he was about 40, an existential question plagued Sikari Tisso. “Who am I?” Tisso asked himself one day, on his way back home from work. A resident of Diphu, a picturesque hill town in Assam’s Karbi Anglong district, Tisso was well aware of his identity as a Karbi, one of the many tribes that make up the rich landscape of Assam. “Ok, so I am a Karbi,” he told himself, “But what makes me one?” “I have my language, my culture, my tradition, my rituals,” he remembered thinking. But then, soon enough, another more concerning question struck him. “Was is it enough to just ‘have’?”........Read more

IPhone Designs Apple Working On You Can't Even Imagine: What's In For iPhone 13 Series?

Apple is working on a few designs one can’t even imagine. USPTO has published 77 patent filings which were granted to Apple this week, and it leaked out what the Cupertino based tech giant plans to do in the coming few years including a new MacBook, different displays for iPhone and some iPad designs. PatentlyApple reported that the USPTO (US Patent and Trademark Office) published 77 patent filings granted to Apple this week. The interesting patents included an iPad or iPhone with a second display on the back, something we could never imagine Apple doing.  For Mac, the company may abandon the Touch Bar entirely later this year or a new Touch Bar (as seen in one of the patents) with a curved display. For 2021, Apple has a lot already planned for iPhone 13 series. The upcoming iPhones might get the much-awaited upgrades finally this year as an always-On Display, no notch, wide angle sensors on all the models, quad camera system and upto 1TB of onboard storage.........Read more

Transfer WhatsApp Chats To Signal With A Trick: WhatsApp Chats On Signal How?

WhatsApp to Signal app, but how to transfer chats? Here’s how. The hype around Signal continues to grow as WhatsApp is yet to change the privacy policies. Signal is currently the top free app on both Play Store and App Store in India. As WhatsApp henceforth has chosen to share critical user data with other companies of Facebook, the social messaging app has faced massive backlash from users. While people are searching for the best WhatsApp alternatives available, Signal has turned out to be the top contender. So, how to start with Signal? Can you move your ? Yes you can. You can easily transfer the WhatsApp group chats to your Signal app, but sadly not the individual conversations (for now). Many users have already started to use alternative WhatsApp apps as Telegram and Signal, several are yet in the shifting process. The recent boom in popularity have made Signal the top free app on App Store and Play Store in India, surpassing the top social messaging platform in the world, WhatsApp.........Read more

What does Mars sound like? NASA's Perseverance rover sends first audio clip from red planet, shares footage of landing

Last week, NASA's Perseverance rover had made a successful landing on Mars, settling into a deep crater called Jezero and undertaking preparations to begin it's investigation. The robotic geologist and astrobiologist will now investigate the rock and sediment of Jezero’s ancient lakebed and river delta and to look for any signs of ancient microbial life. Since Friday, the rover has given people several glimpses of its surroundings and the Martian crater. Now, videos taken by Perseverance during the the final minutes of its entry, descent, and landing have been released. From the moment of parachute inflation, the camera system covers the entirety of the descent process and footage of the rover's descent ends with its touchdown. ........Read more

Nature sanitizes 41.7 mn ton of human waste every year: Study

Nature sanitizes about 41.7 million ton of human waste per year before the liquid enters the groundwater -- a service worth about $4.4 billion per year, according to a new study. The study, published in the journal One Earth, estimates that more than 2 million cubic meters of the cities' human waste are processed each year without engineered infrastructure. This includes pit latrine waste that gradually filters through the soil -- a natural process that cleans it before it reaches groundwater. "Nature can, and does, take the role of sanitation infrastructure," said researcher Alison Parker from the Cranfield University in the UK. "While we are not marginalizing the vital role of engineered infrastructure, we believe a better understanding of how engineered and natural infrastructure interact may allow adaptive design and management, reducing costs, and improving effectiveness and sustainability, and safeguard the continued existence of these areas of land," Parker added.........Read more

The Connection Between Your Android Phone, Qualcomm Snapdragon Chips And Mars

If you thought your new Android smartphone isn’t already cutting edge, you’d be very wrong. In fact, chances are, your new Android phone, particularly if you’ve splurged on a flagship phone, is more powerful than some of the tech that has landed on Mars recently. The Mars 2020 Perseverance rover which landed on the red planet earlier this month carries with it the Ingenuity Mars Helicopter, an autonomous drone. This drone is powered by the Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 processor, essentially the Qualcomm Snapdragon Flight iteration that drives the Qualcomm Robotics Flight 801 platform. It has its own little important mission on the planet.........Read more

Which Covid-19 vaccine is safe for you? Here’s what experts have to say

How do we know the COVID-19 vaccines are safe? Scientists look for safety issues during the testing phase and continue their monitoring as shots roll out around the world. So far, the only serious warning to emerge is a rare risk of severe allergic reactions.........Read more

The Big Fat Malabar Muslim wedding is all about food and how

Several quaint traditions revolving around the newlyweds and food make up the wedding. When in Malabar, celebrate food —goes the old saying. The northern region of Kerala comprising Kozhikode, Kannur, Kasaragod and other districts is the birthplace of several legendary meat dishes and tea time snacks. However, the Malabar culinary game is at its finest when there is love — and the union of love i.e., a wedding. In many ways, a traditional Malabar Muslim wedding is the safekeeper of ancient recipes and age old food traditions. “These weddings are a repository of old customs. They keep several forgotten food traditions from perishing. There are certain snacks such as the Paneeneer Petti (Rose box) and the Panjara Patta (Rice and sugar pancakes) which are very difficult to make and are sometimes made just for the groom,” says Aysha Markerouse, a Moplah cuisine consultant who has worked with prominent restaurants in Kozhikode.........Read more

How to stop Facebook from collecting your personal data | BGR India

Here we will be detailing how you can stop Facebook from tracking your online activity. Facebook has been under the scanner for how it handles the private data of its users since its cambridge scandal. The company is also facing heat for  ‘s privacy policy that states that user data will be shared across all of its apps. Another Facebook feature that raises privacy concerns is its ‘off-Facebook activity-tracking feature’, which tracks users app and website usage on their devices. If you are among those wanting to keep your life private from the social media giant, there are a few Facebook settings that you need to change to stop it from tracking your activity. We take a look in detail how you can stop Facebook from tracking your online activity. Before we start detailing how to stop Facebook from tracking your online activity, let’s take a look at what all data does the social media giant actually collects from you. ........Read more

Explained: How India is building its own Footwear Sizing System

By next year, India could have its own ‘Footwear Sizing System’, which will hopefully remove some of the confusion involved in buying shoes of ‘EU’, ‘UK’ or ‘US’ sizes, especially online. CSIR-Central Leather Research Institute (CLRI) will lead a pan India feet scanning survey, data from which will be used to define Indian footwear size standards – and which will be included by shoe manufacturers in their size charts. India has never had its own footwear sizing system. The British introduced English sizes before Independence, which are followed still. Manufacturers size footwear according to the English system, with charts mentioning the equivalent European and American sizes. According to this UK system, the average Indian woman wears footwear sizes between 4 and 6, and the average man between 5 to 11.........Read more

Historic! NASA Mars Rover Perseverance Successfully Lands on The Red Planet, Sends First Image

In a historic Mars landing, The American space agency, National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), has successfully landed its Perseverance rover in a deep crater near the planet Mars’ equator called Jezero. The rover touched down at around 3:55 p.m. ET, ( around 2:30 am on Friday in India) after executing a daring and dramatic landing that had been nicknamed the “seven minutes of terror.” “Touchdown confirmed,” Swati Mohan, the lead guidance and operations specialist announced from the control room. The robotic vehicle sailed through space for nearly seven months, covering 293 million miles (472 million km) before piercing the Martian atmosphere at 12,000 miles per hour (19,000 km per hour) to begin its approach to touchdown on the planet’s surface.........Read more

Android 12 First Developer Preview Released by Google: Compatible Devices, Features & More

Google has released the first developer preview of its next Android version . Android 12 is expected start rolling out to the masses later this year. release come soon after several reports leaked few features of Android 12, including things like redesigned widgets, an in-depth theming system, and the speculated dessert name. The first developer preview of Android 12 is aimed at developers for getting their apps ready for the next Android version. The Android 12 Developer preview is available to download on smartphones and developers can also look at the new features and changes by using the Android Emulator.........Read more

The Magnificent Motera - The Largest Cricket Stadium in the World

In October 2015, Gujarat Cricket Association under the visionary leadership of the then GCA President and current Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi decided to reconstruct the stadium and make it the largest Cricket Stadium in the world. In February 2020, the redevelopment task was completed and it is now capable of accommodating more than 1.1 lakh cricket fans.........Read more

Keep or Sell: What should cryptocurrency investors do amid uncertainty?

Bitcoin – the oldest cryptocurrency that was launched in 2009 – had touched the level of $1 in 2011, and after 10 years in 2021, it has touched the $50,000 level, giving a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of over 195 per cent for investors over the last 10 years. However, with the Cryptocurrency and Regulation of Official Digital Currency Bill, 2021 scheduled to be presented in Parliament in the current Budget session, the cryptocurrency investors in India are in a dilemma whether they should continue to hold their cryptocurrency assets or liquidate their holdings.........Read more

Here's What Dieting Actually Does to Your Metabolism, According to Scientists

When it comes to dieting, research shows the majority of people will regain some – if not most – of the . While there are many reasons why this weight regain may happen, some popular claims online are that it's because dieting permanently wrecks your metabolism. But while it's true that dieting slows your metabolism, it also improves your metabolism in many positive ways. When we talk about metabolism, we're typically referring to your . This is the number of calories your body burns at rest. Of course, the more activity we do, the more calories we burn. In order to lose weight through dieting, you need to consume fewer calories than you're using. This forces the body to use its energy stores – like fat – to meet the shortfall. Your metabolic rate will also change as a result.........Read more

World’s fastest computer gives birth to tsunami-predicting AI

Human-centric AI news and analysis The model can run on a regular PC Scientists have used the   to develop an AI tool that predicts tsunami flooding in almost real-time. The system was created by researchers in Japan, one of the most seismically active areas in the world. “tsu” meaning harbour, and “nami” meaning wave. In 2011, the country was hit by a devastating earthquake and tsunami that caused The tragic event exposed many shortcomings in Japan’s tsunami prediction method. The new AI model was designed to provide a more effective approach.........Read more

Apple Co-Founder Steve Jobs’ Job Application Which He Wrote In 1973 Goes Up For Auction

An Internet entrepreneur from England was the winning bidder, three years ago, but the buyer had wished to remain anonymous.   He goes on to note “Computer” and “Calculator” as skills, along with “Design” and “Tech,” and says that he has special abilities that include “Electronics” and digital “Tech or Design Engineer.”   A single page signed job application from 1973 is being offered for sale by auction.In the questionnaire Steve Jobs highlights his experience with “computers and calculators” and special abilities in “electronic tech or design engineer digital”.The questionnaire is believed to have been completed around the time he dropped out of Reed College in Portland, Oregon.A year later he joined Atari as a technician where he worked with Steve Wozniak before they founded Apple in 1976.........Read more

India Govt Builds WhatsApp Alternative Called Sandes: How To Download And Use

Last month, we saw whatsapp privacy policy causing a mass exodus from the Facebook-acquired messaging app where people shifted to other, more secure alternatives like Signal, Telegram and others.  The need for this came after the .  There were even instances of data of government officials being compromised due to using WhatsApp and other third-party apps which forced the government to make an app for communications between government officials and it was named GIMS or Government Instant Messaging Service. The service was launched sometime in August 2020 and now this GIMS itself has been named Sandes.  . Once here, you need to select the platform of your choice. ........Read more

What will become of India’s booming ed-tech startups once schools reopen?

The Covid-19 pandemic has set off a golden era for India’s ed-tech startups. But if current trends are anything go by, this party won’t last forever. In March 2020, when the Covid-19 outbreak started in India, the country’s largest ed-tech platform Byju’s saw join its courses. The following month, another 7.5 million came on board. Byju’s rival Vedantu, which hosts live online classes for school kids, clocked 75 million hours of content consumption in 2020 with 6.3 million students across the K-12 category and competitive exams prep accessing its material.........Read more

Nature Makes Wood. Could a Lab Make It Better?

A group of MIT researchers hopes to drastically trim these inefficiencies. The researchers grew wood-like plant tissue in the lab, which, if scaled up, could perhaps one day lead to the development of lab-grown wood, fiber, and other biomaterials aimed at reducing the environmental footprint of forestry and agriculture. Their work is described in a recent Journal of Cleaner Production paper.........Read more

How the coronavirus mutates and what this means for the future of COVID-19

The recent appearance of new variants of SARS-CoV-2 (the coronavirus causing COVID-19 infections), that may be associated with increased transmission of the virus and disease severity, has raised questions about the nature and rates of mutations in viruses. The answers to these questions will potentially guide public health decisions. However, it is also important for individuals to understand them so as to prevent potential panic. Here are some of the basics. these are their genetic inheritance. All cells have genomes made of strands of deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA). Viruses, on the other hand, may have genomes made of strings of DNA or ribonucleic acid (RNA) nucleotides. ........Read more

One of the World's Most Prolific Cybercriminals Has Retired - And May Well Be a Bitcoin Billionaire

Hundreds of millions of cards have been stolen from online retailers, banks and payments companies before being sold for cryptocurrency on dozens of online marketplaces. According to Elliptic’s analysis, the founder of one of the most popular carding marketplaces, Joker’s Stash, has retired having amassed a fortune of over $1 billion. Every time you make a purchase with a credit or debit card, your card details are transmitted and stored in computer systems. Many of the major hacks of retailers and other companies are motivated by getting hold of these card credentials. Stolen cards have value because they can be used to purchase high-value items or gift cards, which can then be resold for cash. This process is known as “carding”, and has become a key part of the cybercriminal’s playbook. Carding is very profitable in its own right, but it is also used to help launder and cash-out cryptocurrency obtained through other types of cybercrime. Joker’s Stash - the King of Carding........Read more

Highest-Resolution Images of DNA Reveal It's Surprisingly Jiggly

Scientists have captured the highest-resolution images ever taken of DNA, revealing previously unseen twisting and squirming behaviors. Deoxyribonucleic acid, otherwise known as DNA, can be surprisingly active when crammed and contorted inside a cell, according to new published in Nature Communications. These hidden movements were revealed by computer simulations fed with the highest-resolution images ever taken of a single molecule of DNA. The new study is exposing previously unseen behaviors in the self-replicating molecule, and this research could eventually lead to the development of powerful new genetic therapies. ........Read more

The Anticipated Future of the Moon

When the Earth was young, shortly after the moon formed, our planet was spinning so fast that a day was approximately five hours long. During the intervening billions of years, the dragging effect of the moon’s gravity slowed the Earth’s spin to the 24-hour day we now observe. Approximately 50,000 years in the future, this continuing effect will slow the Earth sufficiently that a leap second will need to be added to the clock every day if we wish to maintain our current calendar.........Read more

Explained: The real impact of Facebook switching off news in Australia

Calling it their “last choice”, Facebook said it will “stop allowing publishers and people in Australia from sharing local and international news on Facebook and Instagram”. What does this mean for users and publishers? Across the world, publishers have used Facebook as a means to reach out to audiences who use it as a content consumption platform, thus increasing their reach and revenues. Users too re-share a lot of news content, adding to their virality. All this results in millions of visits for news sites referred from Facebook’s timeline. Publishers also have commercial agreements in place with Facebook to allow the social network to host their content in the form of Instant Articles that open faster than publisher pages.........Read more

Indian gaming industry sees uptick in hiring: Report

The Indian gaming industry is witnessing a spike in hiring activity, both searches and postings were up by 13 and 15 per cent respectively in January as against last year. As per job search website Indeed, the number of job postings in January were twice the number of searches, in July last year it was triple. A recent report also pegged that gaming industry will be at $2.8 billion by 2022. Sashi Kumar, Managing Director, Indeed.com said, “Our data forecasts the growth of India’s gaming industry which will have a substantial impact on the jobs of tomorrow. With a ripple effect across sectors such as technology, telecommunications, marketing or events, the gaming industry has the potential to generate massive employment in India.”........Read more

Man on hospital bed turns out to be cake, images spook netizens

Not too long ago, a trend of realistic cakes had taken over social media with pastry chefs sharing pictures of life-like cakes made by them. A Twitter user seems to have brought back the trend and this time it has left netizens spooked. Several pictures of a man lying on a hospital bed were shared by Twitter handle @horror4kids. However, the devil, as they say, was in the detail as the caption to the post read, “This is a cake”. However, the images had their desired impact as netizens were in shock. At first glance, it is hard to believe that the person in the picture is a cake, but on taking a closer look it becomes clear that it indeed is a hyper-realistic cake. — Horror4Kids (@horror4kids) Once shared online, it did not take long for netizens to react to the bizarre cake design. While some found the concept ‘disturbing’, others wrote that the cake would give them ‘nightmares’. — dojamibu (@JamesM_TGM) I’m gonna have nightmares!!!........Read more

'Biggest Blunder in Banking History': Citibank Wired $900 Million to Lenders by Mistake. What Lies Ahead

Citibank acting as a loan agent to cosmetic company Revlon, accidentally transferred USD 900 million (about Rs 6,554 crore) to the company’s lenders. Citi was serving as the so-called administrative agent between Revlon, the embattled cosmetics company, and its creditors. It mistakenly paid those lenders much more — USD 8 million was the correct amount— than it intended to. A worried Citibank then moved the court demanding a full refund but it still has not received $USD 00 million from the accidental transfer. A US District Court judge ruled that Citi can’t recover that amount. It said, "it is one of the biggest blunders in banking history." This is a unique case involving a corporate client. Here's an estimation on what lies ahead. Can such a huge amount of money reach the wrong beneficiary? It shouldn’t happen in a normal scenario. Banks have stringent procedures to make sure that a fund transfer is approved by the sender and the recipient details are submitted promptly.........Read more

With ISRO partnership and new rules, MapmyIndia hopes to take on Google Maps’ monopoly with an Indian alternative

With the government finally deregulating the use of geospatial data, Indians can look at local maps that are much more detailed with realtime updates on what’s happening on the ground. Among the biggest beneficiaries of the move will be MapmyIndia, one of India’s oldest players in the cartography space, which has already announced a tie-up with ISRO to create new mapping products. “ISRO’s imagery gives a bird’s-eye-view of how India looks from above. But it also has a huge set of imagery like weather data and landslide information. When all of this gets combined, it is a more powerful and indigenous alternative to Maps,” MapmyIndia CEO Rohan Verma tells over a call.........Read more

Young doctors on what’s keeping them hooked to Ayurveda

The call for a more balanced and healthy living is being answered in the with the re-emergence of traditional practices for the body, mind, and soul. One such age-old practice gaining popularity is — indicative of ancient wisdom and knowledge that practitioners have amassed over years. One look at social media, however, will tell you that many of today’s Ayurvedic practitioners are young and well-connected with several hundreds of people through their channels. They also have an advanced educational degree in the practice and allied fields to further their case. So, what is driving this change? reached out to some practitioners to understand more about their tryst with this form of medicine, catering to an audience spread across the globe, and why retains an edge for them.........Read more

What is Synthetic Meat That Bill Gates Wants You to Eat to Fight Climate Change?

The billionaire American business magnate, software developer, and philanthropist has a new book out, called “How to Avoid a Climate Disaster.” One of his top solutions involved synthetic meat. “I do think all rich countries should move to 100% synthetic beef,” with MIT Technology Review, on how to cut back on methane emissions. “You can get used to the taste difference, and the claim is they’re going to make it taste even better over time. Eventually, that green premium is modest enough that you can sort of change the people or use regulation to totally shift the demand.”........Read more

A Submarine That Never Runs Out of Power is America's Latest Stealth Ammo

United States' Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency (DARPA) is building a submarine that will never run out of power. According to a recent report in Forbes, the defence agency has given contracts to a company named Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation and Martin Defense Group to build a demonstration version of the new unmanned underwater vehicle, named Manta Ray. In order to achieve the indefinite power supply, DARPA has awarded a contract to Metron for the submarine's energy-harvesting system to power it indefinitely, allowing it to carry out missions lasting months or years without having to return to base or refuel.........Read more

Harmless Gut Bacteria E. Coli Can Evolve into a Life-Threatening Infection, States Study

Researchers have determined how harmless E.coli gut bacteria in chickens can easily pick up the genes required to evolve to cause a life-threatening infection. The study, published in the journal Nature Communications, warns that such infections not only affect the poultry industry but could also potentially cross over to infect humans. "Previously we thought that E. coli became pathogenic by acquiring specific genes from other bugs, often packaged in mobile elements called plasmids. But our study compared the genomes of disease-causing and harmless E. coli in chickens and found that they can 'turn bad' simply by picking up genes from their environment," said Sam Sheppard from the University of Bath in the UK.........Read more

NASA is Offering 500,000 Dollars if You Figure Out How to Keep Astronauts Fed on Journey to Mars

Fancy cooking up some tasty treats for astronauts on interstellar missions? Great, but remember, their food must be able to be cooked and eaten in space, feeding these far-flung travelers as they head to Mars. US$500,000 is up for grabs for the winners of this Deep Space Food Challenge. Have you got what it takes to be a space chef? Then this is the challenge for you. But Michelin-starred gastronomes can step aside, because the Deep Space Food Challenge from NASA, in collaboration with the Canadian Space Agency, is calling for participants to invent new systems and technologies to feed astronauts on their space missions. And that's no mean feat. Space food research has already developed special ultra-high-calorie chocolate bars to provide astronauts with energy but keep food weights on board low. And for years, NASA has been studying the potential to grow fresh fruit and vegetables in space to offer healthier options to humans on missions.........Read more

Epic’s new MetaHuman tool lets you craft realistic faces inside a browser

The new software tool is powered by Epic’s Unreal Engine Epic Games has announced a new, browser-based software tool powered by its Unreal Engine called the that can craft highly realistic human faces and help power more realistic body movements and facial animations. Epic provided a sneak peek at the platform today in a pair of YouTube videos showing off examples of creations built using the MetaHuman Creator, and “metahuman” appears to be the term the company is using to describe this brand of virtual, non-real individual. ........Read more

How and When Did Valentine's Day Start?

St Valentine's Day has roots in several different legends that have found their way to us through the ages. One of the earliest popular symbols of Valentine's day is Cupid, the Roman god of love, who is represented by the image of a young boy with bow and arrow. Several theories surround the history of Valentine's Day.........Read more

Watch a Billion Years of Shifting Tectonic Plates in 40 Mesmerising Seconds

The tectonic plates that cover Earth like a jigsaw puzzle move about as fast as our fingernails grow, but over the course of a billion years that's enough to travel across the entire planet – as a fascinating new video shows. In one of the most complete models of tectonic plate movements ever put together, scientists have condensed a billion years of movement into a 40-second video clip, so we can see how these giant slabs of rock have interacted over time. they're more than just a covering for the planet, they're a life support system that affects everything that lives on the surface. "For the first time a complete model of tectonics has been built, including all the boundaries," geoscientist Michael Tetley, who completed his PhD at the University of Sydney, told .........Read more

Could Dragons Really Fly and Breath Fire? Here's the Science

You've probably been told dragons are mythical beasts. After all, a flying, fire-breathing reptile could never exist in real life, right? It's true no fire-breathing dragons have ever been discovered, yet flying lizard-like creatures exist in the fossil record. Some may be found in the wild today. Take a look at the science of winged flight and possible mechanisms by which a dragon might even breathe fire.........Read more

Darwin's theory of evolution got us thinking about our understanding of God, says Bharat Jhunjhunwala

The English naturalist Charles Darwin was born on this day in 1809. He studied the evolution of turtles in the Galapagos Islands of South America. He came up with the theory that the present man had evolved from apes. At that time, the western world believed that god had made man in his likeness, just as a sculptor sculpts a statue with hammer and chisel. Thus, the Bible says, ‘God created humankind in his own image… male and female he created them’ (Genesis 1:27). ........Read more

Why your brain loves it when you exercise, plus 3 easy ways to work out at home

Motivation is not in high supply these days — but ensuring that we move a little bit every day is more important for us than ever, according to , a neuroscientist at New York University. Dr. Suzuki studies the neurological impacts of exercise, and she says that just a walk around the block or a 10-minute online workout will not only improve your day but also benefit your brain in a lasting way. “Exercising to increase your fitness literally builds brand new brain cells. It changes your brain’s anatomy, physiology and function,” she explains. “Every time you work out, you are giving your brain a neurochemical bubble bath, and these regular bubble baths can also help protect your brain in the long term from conditions like Alzheimer’s and dementia.”........Read more

Captain Pumpkin And His Papayas | Outlook India Magazine

Many give in to the good life; many head to the academy, giving neophytes the benefit of their experience as international cri­­cketers; some aim for high office in cricket’s labyrinthine bureaucracy; others head straight to a lucrative media career. Mahendra Singh Dhoni, mav­­erick and ‘captain cool’, chose the least trodden path—he’s a farmer now. After hanging his well-scuffed boots on August 15 last year, MSD has taken to organic farming on his spra­­wling farm near his hometown, Ranchi. From growing seasonal vegetables and fruits to poultry and dairy, 39-year-old Mahi has been keeping busy in integrated farming, far from the hurly-burly of international cricket, where the fortunes of his beloved team fall and rise with every passing game. Already, there is a huge demand for fresh vegetables and dairy products from his farm in the local market, and he has plans to export them to the UAE. ........Read more

How the Sangh is collecting funds for Ayodhya Ram temple

What’s underway across the country now is the task of collecting funds for this temple. RJTKN is being aided by organisations under the Sangh Parivar — mainly the Vishva Hindu Parishad (VHP), the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). A massive donation drive was started on January 14, 2021, and the 42-day drive is set to conclude on February 27. According to Dr Anil Kumar Mishra, a member of the trust, the target is to reach each household across 11 crore families and 55 crore people. Just 15 days into the drive, Govind Dev announced on January 29, 2021 that Rs 230 crore had already been collected. The drive is called the Shri Ram Janmabhoomi Nidhi Samarpan Abhiyan........Read more

Education Loans: How To Choose From Banks, NBFCs And Fintechs

The rising cost of education means that funding requirements have increased. According to data from GrayQuest, an education fintech company, the average Indian household spends 13 percent of its annual income on higher education fees per child. So, if you have two children, 26 percent of the annual income goes towards financing the education. ........Read more

Explained: Why Are Top Business Leaders Betting Big On Education Institutes?

What is common between Anand Mahindra, Kumar Mangalam Birla, and Shiv Nadar? They are all business leaders. Well, the answer is only partially right. There is something bigger at stake. These business leaders have a shared common vision: education. Nadar, Birla and Mahindra are three top corporate leaders who have announced expansion of their education interests in the form of new universities and business institutes.........Read more

Gearhead 101: Understanding How Your Car's Engine Works

I’ve never been a car guy. I just didn’t have any interest in tooling around under the hood to figure out how my car works. Except for or every now and then, if I ever had a problem with my car, I’d just take it into the mechanic and when he came out to explain what was wrong, I nodded politely and pretended like I knew what he was talking about. But lately I’ve had the itch to actually learn the basics of how cars work. I don’t plan on becoming a full on grease monkey, but I want to have a basic understanding of how everything in my car actually makes it go. At a minimum, this knowledge will allow me to have a clue about what the mechanic is talking about the next time I take my car in. Plus it seems to me that a man ought to be able to grasp the fundamentals of the technology he uses every day. When it comes to this website, I know about how coding and SEO works; it’s time for me to examine the more concrete things in my world, like what’s under the hood of my car.........Read more

No Hugs or Handshakes But 150,000 Condoms Will be Given Out: Organizers Issue Guidelines to Athletes For Tokyo Games

The athletes set to compete in the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games – which got postponed by one year because of the COVID-19 pandemic have to carefully read the 33-page rulebook released by organisers ahead of the quadrennial event. The competing athletes could be kicked out of their respective events if they break strict anti-virus rules. No socialising, no handshakes and no hugs – that’s what athletes at the coronavirus-postponed Tokyo Olympics can expect this summer. The 33-page document — the last in a series of ‘playbooks’ drawn up in a bid to ensure the Games can go ahead safely. As per the guidelines, athletes will be tested for the virus at least once every four days. They will be barred from competing if they return a confirmed positive test. Their time in Japan will be ‘minimized to reduce the risk of infection,’ and those staying at the Olympic Village will be expected to “avoid unnecessary forms of physical contact.” ........Read more

Like Women, Men Hit Menopause Too - All You Need to Know

Mood swings, irritability, and lack of energy are not just the signs of menopause in females but males too. Yes, they go through this phase too. Male menopause is commonly known as andropause. It occurs due to changes in the level of the male hormone called testosterone. Its level drops with age. Testosterone is produced in a man’s testes and does more than just fueling his sexual drive. This hormone keeps men mentally and physically energetic. It also maintains their muscle mass and helps during a fight-or-flight situation. ........Read more

UK COVID Variant Will Sweep The World, Battle Against Virus to Go On For a Decade, Warns Top Scientist

The coronavirus variant, first found in the British region of Kent, is likely to sweep around the world and the battle with the virus is going to go on for at least a decade, reported international news agency Reuters, quoting the head of the UK’s genetic surveillance programme. The Kent variant has “swept the country” and “it’s going to sweep the world, in all probability,” Sharon Peacock, director of the COVID-19 Genomics UK consortium, reportedly told the BBC. “Once we get on top of [the virus] or it mutates itself out of being virulent – causing disease – then we can stop worrying about it. But I think, looking in the future, we’re going to be doing this for years. We’re still going to be doing this 10 years down the line, in my view,” Peacock said. ........Read more

Centre, Twitter India Get Supreme Court's Notice Over Screening of 'Anti-India, Seditious' Tweets

The Supreme Court on Friday issued a notice to the Centre and Twitter seeking a mechanism “to check content and advertisements spreading hatred through fake news and instigative messages through bogus accounts”, especially the micro-blogging website. The Court was hearing a plea filed by BJP leader Vinit Goenka which said there are hundreds of fake Twitter handles and bogus Facebook accounts in the name of eminent people and high dignitaries. Issuing notices to the Centre & Twitter, a bench led by the Chief Justice of India SA Bobde said that the matter must be tagged with similar pending petitions seeking social media regulation. Advocate Ashwini Dubey, appearing for Goenka, said directions are needed for establishing a mechanism to regulate hateful content on the social networking site. ........Read more

When must a person undergo knee-replacement surgery? A doctor answers

When it comes to the body, most people take it for granted and deliberately push their doctor appointments, while knowing fully well they need the check-up. When this happens, an already-existing health issue may aggravate, causing them more inconvenience. Among other things, bone health becomes extremely vital after a certain age, and doctors advise their patients to get themselves checked. According to a study published in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, a vast majority of patients — who would benefit from knee replacement — are taking too long to have a surgery, to the detriment of their mobility and overall health, points out Dr Kaushal Malhan, director orthopedic surgery, Fortis Hospital, Mulund. “The study also showed delayed knee surgery has negative effects on post-operative recovery. During the , many patients delayed addressing their joint and bone problems; this proved to be even more detrimental,” he tells .........Read more

Yoga for kids: How to improve their physical and mental well-being

Our children live in a very fast world of busy parents, school pressures, incessant lessons, video games, malls, and competitive sports. We usually don’t think of these influences as stressful for our kids, but often they are. This bustling pace of our child’s life can have a profound impact on their inner peace and joy. Yoga can help counter these pressures. Yoga at an early age encourages self-esteem and body awareness with physical activity and teaches techniques for relaxation which can help them navigate life’s challenges with more ease. ........Read more

Dr Gagandeep Kang on the mystery of India’s declining COVID numbers

What makes people tick? What are the stories they carry with them? In a world of shouting heads, veteran journalist, radio commentator and novelist Sandip Roy sits down to have real conversations about the fascinating world around us and the people who shape it. Catch these engaging interviews every other Sunday While the SARS- COV 2 virus surges around the world and mutates, India’s number of deaths went below 100 for the first time since May. So, what’s with the COVID-19 mystery in India? Are we heading towards herd immunity? In this episode, Microbiologist Dr Gagandeep Kang and Sandip Roy discuss why South Asian and Sub-Saharan countries have shown higher seropositivity than the West, why vaccinations are necessary but not enough and the pressing need for more clinical research.........Read more

Avoid Charging Overnight: 4 Handy Tips to Increase Lifespan of Your Smartphone Battery

While it's important to use your smartphone battery wisely to help boost its lifespan, it's also worth thinking about how you recharge it, to help prevent damage. Current Lithium-ion batteries theoretically support an average 500 to 1,000 charge cycles before giving up the ghost for good. Here are four charging tips to help keep your battery alive for as long as possible. Avoid charging the battery fully In general, there's absolutely no need to charge your smartphone battery to 100% each time you recharge. Instead, you should ideally charge it to 80%, then stop. Similarly, it's better to avoid waiting until battery life gets too low before plugging in. As soon as battery level drops under 30%, it's advisable to recharge. Avoid full charging cycles as much as possible........Read more

Which Came First? iOS or Android

Currently, when someone’s in the market to buy a smartphone they either look for an iPhone or an Android phone. That’s what it has come down to, an epic battle that will probably never end. The guys at Apple Gazette took out some time from their not so busy schedule and constructed this infographic, which shows that the situation is not how it looks. Apparently, Android OS did come before iOS or iPhone, but it wasn’t called that and was in its rudimentary form. Furthermore the first true Android device, the HTC Dream (G1), came almost one year after the release of the iPhone.........Read more

Apple’s decision to stop iPhone 12 Mini production will have an impact on Android smartphones too 

Is this even a smartphone anymore? It looks like a mini-TVhahaha...who needs that big a screen? We should rather make calls using a tablet! These were some of the commonly cracked jokes or asked questions, only few years ago, when the smartphone makers were increasing the display sizes. It was a rather new concept and users were still adjusting to it. Massive displays led to bigger smartphone sizes and rightly so. Smartphones were being used to read text, watch videos and interact with other users. Not everyone though was satisfied. They never are. That’s why there were continuous calls to bring back compact form factors. Result? Some responded. Apple and Google both tried to re-introduce compact smartphones while others too dropped their ‘affordable’ smaller-sized device last year. Seems like the idea has failed miserably.........Read more

Decoding India-China disengagement plan in eastern Ladakh

After 10-month-long military hostilities between India and China, there are signs of tensions being eased in eastern Ladakh as both sides have agreed on a mutual disengagement plan, starting the north bank of Pangong Tso where a prolonged eyeball to eyeball situation continued. Defence Minister Rajnath Singh made the big announcement of the mutual disengagement decided between Indian and Chinese troops in Pangong lake in Rajya Sabha on Thursday. As reported by India Today TV first that the Finger area of the lake would be a no patrol zone, the defence minister gave out details of the pullback planned from the contentious Finger 4 area. Earlier, China insisted that it has patrolling rights till Finger 4 while Indian troops remained at their post. This was not acceptable to India. In the last Corps Commander meet, a consensus was reached to have a moratorium on Finger 4, making it a no patrol zone.........Read more

Delhi: Capital of British India

The foundation of Delhi was laid at the by King George V as the Capital of British India. Prior to this Calcutta served as the capital. Shifting of the Capital from Calcutta to Delhi was led by The British wanted a place where the Government could spend all the seasons of the year. After examining various sites, Delhi was finalised as it was easily accessible and Simla. The association of Delhi with the Mahabharata and the Mughal Empire symbolized both Therefore, on these geographical, political and historical grounds, Delhi was chosen as the new Imperial city. was set up in 1912 to plan, develop and design the major buildings like the Viceroy’s House, the Secretariat buildings and for other structural work connected with the aesthetics of the new city. Edwin Lutyens became a member of this committee in March 1912.........Read more

Famous works of art from 30 countries around the world

Unlike nations, art knows no boundaries. It can be forged in a vacuum, inspired solely by a burning, inner conflict, or created by wistful expatriates wishing to bridge a long-lost past with an uncertain future. It can emerge organically, in harmony with the natural landscape, or as a carefully crafted response to cultural or political touchstones. Museums and private collections heave with such works, yet only a select few demonstrate a rare confluence of intent, emotion, and artistic genius. These masterpieces are seared into the collective consciousness, reproduced in varying sizes and shapes on walls, stationary, and coffee mugs the world over. Traditionally, art history has sought to neatly categorize a multitude of overlapping movements and styles, geography and epochs–Impressionism, Antiquity, Romanticism, Realism, and the Middle Ages, to name just a few. Borders, however, are frequently fluid, artists often itinerant and occasionally anonymous.........Read more

Scientists unravel what makes some people Covid-19 super-spreaders

Obesity, age, and the state of COVID-19 infection influence the number of virus particles an infected person breathes out, according to a new study which says these factors determine if a person becomes a super-spreader of the virus. The observational study, published in the journal PNAS, assessed 194 healthy people and also examined the findings of an experimental study of nonhuman primates with COVID-19. According to the researchers, including those from Harvard University in the US, exhaled aerosol particles vary greatly between subjects, depending on their age, state of viral infection, and body mass index (BMI). Body mass index is the ratio of a person''s weight to the square of their height in metres, and the scientists said older people with a higher BMI and an increasing degree of COVID-19 infection had three times the number of exhaled respiratory droplets as others in the study groups.........Read more

Five things to keep in mind about Covid-19 vaccine side-effects

Often people develop fever, headaches or pain at the site of injection a few hours or maybe a day after being vaccinated. For mild fever, paracetamol can be taken. If your fever is above 102 degrees Fahrenheit, then it is important to report it to the relevant authority and visit a doctor.........Read more

Tsunami Confirmed: Australia, New Zealand on High Alert After Earthquake of Magnitude 7.7 Jolts Southeast of Loyalty Islands

A powerful undersea earthquake of 7.7 magnitude has struck north of New Zealand, on Wednesday, prompting a tsunami alert in the region. As per updates from the US Geological Agency, the magnitude 7.7 quake was centred at a depth of 10 kilometers (six miles) southeast of the Loyalty Islands. The US Tsunami Warning Centre issued tsunami watches for New Zealand, Fiji, Vanuatu and other Pacific islands. The agency later confirmed that a tsunami is likely to strike the coastal areas of New Zealand and Australia. The development comes as the region is prone to earthquakes because it sits along the Pacific “Ring of Fire,” a horseshoe-shaped series of seismic fault lines around the ocean. In the wake of the earthquake, New Zealand authorities urged residents along its northern coast to avoid beaches and shore areas. ........Read more

Alternative Fuels Data Center: How Do All-Electric Cars Work?

All-electric vehicles (EVs), also referred to as battery electric vehicles, have an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine. The vehicle uses a large traction battery pack to power the electric motor and must be plugged in to a wall outlet or , also called electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE). Because it runs on electricity, the vehicle emits no exhaust from a tailpipe and does not contain the typical liquid fuel components, such as a fuel pump, fuel line, or fuel tank. .........Read more

Top 10 Countries Selling Most Electric Cars: Norway's Highest Density to China's Top Production

The Electric Vehicle Outlook 2020 reports that 58% of all passenger vehicles sold will be electric by 2040, compared to just 2.7% today, suggesting a rapid increase in the next two decades. While the numbers may seem a bit over screeched, given the targets various countries are putting to roll out EVs makes one feel optimistic on the report. Also, with financial incentives available for low- or zero-emission vehicles, plus the advantage of getting the latest technology, more drivers are set to make the switch to electric cars. But which manufacturer is ready to meet the electric demand? Without any doubt, Tesla takes the prize for selling the most EVs at 370,000 a year, or 42 per hour. The majority of the sales were from the game-changing, affordable Model 3. We already know that Tesla is leading the EV market, but what the various countries. Have you ever given a thought which countries are leading the EV revolution?........Read more

AstraZeneca Covid Vaccine Can Be Used For Over-65s And To Cure Variants, Recommends WHO

WHO vaccine experts said on Wednesday the AstraZeneca-Oxford Covid-19 vaccine could be used for people over the age of 65, and also in settings where variants of the virus are circulating. "Taking the totality of available evidence into account, WHO recommends the vaccine for use in persons aged 65 years and older," The 15-member Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) said in fresh recommendations. It said the vaccine could also be used in places where "variants are present," despite a recent study suggesting it was far less effective against a strain of the virus first detected in South Africa.........Read more

LED vs. LCD TVs Explained | What's the Difference? | Digital Trends

What kind of TV should you get? Current top-of-the-line TV technology like or might get a lot of attention, but they can still cost a pretty penny. Until overall OLED and QLED panels become more affordable, LED and LCD televisions still offer up a viable, quality option for the more budget-conscious. An LED TV is an LCD TV, but how the definition of each term became so muddled might come as a surprise.........Read more

Windows 10 vs. MacOS vs. Chrome OS | Digital Trends

Microsoft’s Windows holds around 77% of the global desktop market share, with just shy of two-thirds of that being made up by Windows 10. If you throw in laptops, Windows 10 controls a full 40% of the entire global market, making it by far the most popular OS in the world for those sorts of devices. There are a number of reasons why that is, but the most important is the depth and breadth of its supporting hardware and software. Because Microsoft sells Windows licenses to more or less any PC manufacturer to load on , tablets, your , and everything in between, you can get a Windows machine at almost any size, shape, or price. Microsoft even sells Windows on its own, so consumers and businesses can manually load it onto their PC. That wide-open approach has let it conquer all competitors over the last few decades.........Read more

Satellite images show hydropower plant destroyed by flash floods in Uttarakhand

Two days have passed since flash floods hit parts of Uttarakhand's Chamoli district damaging among other structures an NTPC Hydro Power Project on the river Dhauli Ganga. Satellite images now reveal the extent of the damage caused to the 480 MW Tapovan-Vishnugad hydropower plant and the 13.2 MW under-construction Rishiganga Hydel Project. According to the latest inputs, workers have been reported missing from the Tapovan-Vishnugad hydropower plant site since February 7. The first set of high-resolution satellite images of the National Thermal Power Corporation's (NTPC) under-construction Tapovan-Vishnugad Hydropower project captured on Tuesday showed the extent of damage caused by the flash floods during the avalanche in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district. The satellite images suggest that the majority of the hydropower project has been clogged by the extensive silt caused by the powerful downstream landslide.........Read more

Jallikattu fails to make it to shortlist for Oscars’ best international film

Filmmaker Lijo Jose Pellissery’s Jallikattu, India’s official entry in the Best International Feature category at the 93rd Academy Awards, is out of the Oscars race. The Malayalam-language movie is not part of the shortlist of 15 features that will be vying for a spot in the final five, the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences (AMPAS) announced on Wednesday. Thomas Vinterberg’s Another Round, starring Mads Mikkelson, has made it to shortlist that also includes Andrei Konchalovsky’s Dear Comrades! (Russia), Agnieszka Holland’s Charlatan (Czech Republic) and two documentaries — The Mole Agent from Chile and Collective from Romania. The other contenders are Quo Vadis, Aida? (Bosnia and Herzegovina), Two of Us (France), La Llorona (Guatemala), Better Days (Hong Kong), Sun Children (Iran), Night of the Kings (Ivory Coast), I’m No Longer Here (Mexico), Hope (Norway), A Sun (Taiwan) and The Man Who Sold His Skin (Tunisia). Films from 93 countries were eligible in the category.........Read more

Uttarakhand flash flood: Raini counts its dead, no road link for 13 villages to China border

AS DEBRIS and slush were cleared from the Rishi Ganga power plant site near Raini village, which bore the brunt of the flash flood in Uttarakhand’s Chamoli district, four bodies and the remains of a fifth were recovered Tuesday. It was a grim reminder of the deluge that destroyed the plant two days ago. The area where a water tank and a residential block stood was completely flattened, and a suspension bridge washed away, leaving 13 villages till the China border inaccessible by road. And, fears that another flash flood could hit the area continued to keep residents on tenterhooks. Through Monday night, national and state disaster relief forces and Border Road Organisation (BRO) personnel worked to clear a 100-metre path from the gate of Raini, the home of the Chipko movement in the 1970s, to where the plant was located.........Read more

Koo App: What Is It & How To Download the Made-in-India Twitter Alternative

WHAT IS KOO APP? Koo is micro-blogging platform which was launched 10 months ago but is now being seen an Indian alternative to Twitter after several politicians and celebs joined it. Like Twitter, Koo is used to express views and opinions on various topics. Users can follow each other, conduct polls and share photos, audio, video on Koo, much like Twitter. The Koo app also has DMs like Twitter so users can chat with each other. The Koo app won the Aatmanirbhar App Challenge organised by the Indian government in August 2020. The social media platform was developed by Aprameya Radhakrishna and Mayank Bidawatka in March 2020. The Koo app supports multiple Indian regional languages. At the time of writing this, Koo supports Hindi, Telugu, Kannada, Bengali, Tamil, Malayalam, Gujarati, Marathi, Punjabi, Oriya and Assamese. Koo is available for download on the Google Play Store and Apple App Store. Users can download the Koo app on their iPhone and Android devices.........Read more

Military Coup in Myanmar: After Facebook, Country Blocks Access to Twitter, Instagram

Myanmar, in the wake of ongoing military coup, has blocked access to micro-blogging platform Twitter and photo-sharing app Instagram on Saturday, just two days after the country directed state-owned telecom companies to take a similar action against social media giant Facebook. A statement issued by Telenor, one of the four operators in Myanmar, said all mobile operators, international gateways and internet service providers in the country received a directive from Myanmar’s Ministry of Transport and Communications to suspend social media platforms Twitter and Instagram until further notice, reports Xinhua news agency. The Ministry’s directive asked the operators to temporarily suspend the access of Twitter and Instagram under Section 77 of the country’s Telecommunications Law, mentioning that the move has been made in the name of public interest and stability. The restriction of access to Facebook was imposed on Thursday till Sunday.........Read more

How Much Dark Chocolate is Healthy to Eat Every Day?

To all the chocolate lovers out there - you don’t really need an excuse to eat it every day, right? Having a bar stashed somewhere in the kitchen is good enough for a reason. Happiness and chocolate have been closely associated as a “love food” since the Mesoamerican civilizations. Chocolate was considered a luxury commodity in those early times. If you have been trying to validate your sweet habit then you should know there is an alternative out there that can positively affect your health. Enter dark chocolate. High in cocoa percentage, dark chocolate is a beneficial part of your daily diet, heart and overall health. Yes, you can now feel good about your dark chocolate obsession. But, the better question is what is the limit before overindulgence countervails the positive effects. What is the daily recommended amount of dark chocolate?........Read more

Australian Bushfire Photo Shot from a Drone Wins Wildlife Photography Award

Instagram Robert Irwin, son of famous wildlife Australian zookeeper and wildlife expert Steve Irwin, has made his family proud after earning the first prize in the Wildlife Photographer of the Year People's Choice Award contest. The son of the conservationist clicked the picture of the devastating Australian Bushfire and was nominated for the same last year. Titled Bushfire, the image is a drone capture that shows a line of fire burning in between the bushes, dividing it into two parts. Robert clicked this image near the Steve Irwin Wildlife Reserve in Cape York, Queensland. Back in October 2020, Robert requested netizens to vote for his click to help him won the Wildlife Photographer of the Year award.........Read more

Burning of Fossil Fuels Causes Over 30% Deaths in India, Max Reported from UP, Bihar: Harvard Study

Over 30 per cent of yearly deaths in India can be attributed to air pollution from fossil fuels, a study by Harvard University revealed. The research was conducted in collaboration with the University of Birmingham, the University of Leicester, and University College London. And was published on Tuesday in the journal Environmental Research. It found that the highest rates of deaths from fossil fuels like coal and diesel to be in China and India. The report stated that within India, Uttar Pradesh recorded the highest number of deaths due to air pollution from fossil fuels. Data revealed that over 4.7 lakh deaths per year in Uttar Pradesh were due to pollution. Meanwhile, in Bihar over 2.8 lakh deaths were attributed to air pollution from fossil fuels.........Read more

Mutant UK Covid-19 Strain May Force Serum Institute to Tweak Vaccine Composition

Serum Institute of India may have to make adjustments in the composition of the vaccine developed by the University of Oxford and British pharma major AstraZeneca after the World Health Organization’s (WHO) Strategic Advisory Group of Experts on Immunization (SAGE) expressed concerns over the effectiveness of the vaccine against the South African mutant coronavirus strain. According to a report by Mint, on Monday and Tuesday, SAGE reviewed the evidence on the vaccine’s effectiveness on new SARS CoV-2 variants, before making significant recommendations.........Read more

After Centre's Warning, Twitter Begins Blocking Accounts with 'Khalistani' Links But Adds 'Free Speech' Rider

Under pressure over 'farmer genocide' remarks made by alleged Khalistani supporters on micro-blogging site, Twitter has finally started blocking accounts flagged by the Centre for "carrying inflammatory and divisive comments". A Times of India report quoted top sources as saying that Twitter has assured the government that it is looking into its concerns, and taking stock of the content on the handles mentioned in the notice sent by the IT Ministry under Section 69A of the IT Act. The sources were further quoted as saying that of the 257 handles that had originally tweeted with the 'farmer genocide' hashtag, 126 have been deactivated. Just a few days ago, Twitter had blocked them, before activating them almost immediately citing "free speech" and because it found the content "newsworthy". It has now blocked many of them again.........Read more

Getting into protest sites now tough as nails

Monday morning saw an overnight addition to Delhi’s border with Haryana at Tikri as more than 2,000 iron nails were embedded in rows across the breadth of Rohtak Road on the Delhi side of the border, positioned to puncture the tyres of vehicles coming in from the Haryana side. Since the beginning of the farmers’ agitation at Tikri, protesters have been on the Haryana side of the border, separated from Delhi by several layers of metal barricades. Since the violent events of January 26 and its tense aftermath, however, the Delhi side of the border has become increasingly fortified. As of Monday, there were several layers of security — two heavy layers of metal barricading; a layer of large stone boulders; followed by the layer of nails, and a layer of concrete barricades. A few metres ahead of that was another layer of stone boulders, followed by yet another layer of concrete barricades after a few metres.........Read more

Some of The Coolest, Most Futuristic Gadgets That Have Been Showcased in 2021 Yet, In Pictures

Since Xiaomi launched this futuristic charging solution, let us take a look at some of the most futuristic gadgets that have been introduced recently. Given that the Consumer Electronics Show (CES) 2021 has just wrapped up, we have a lot of cool gadgets that do seem like something straight out of the future. ........Read more

PUBG Mobile Replacement or Not, FAU-G Always Had Too Steep a Hill to Climb

Hot on the heels of the central government of India banning ubiquitously popular mobile game PUBG Mobile, Indian game development studio nCore partnered with Bollywood actor Akshay Kumar to announce a . Right then itself, even as the development house continued to ride on a wave of nationalist sentiment fueled by India's border conflicts with neighbouring nation China, the banned PUBG Mobile still continued to gain more headlines and hype around a potential reversal of the ban, than FAU-G jumping in and stealing PUBG Mobile's headlines. It perhaps should have been read as clear signs right then, that the hill that nCore's FAU-G had to climb to endear itself to gamers was always going to be measured against the mountain that was PUBG Mobile, and that is a recipe for a hill too steep to climb. Understanding the Goliath........Read more

Myanmar’s Aung San Suu Kyi Detained as Military Stages Coup, Declares One-Year State of Emergency

Myanmar's military has detained the country's de facto leader Aung San Suu Kyi and the country's president in an apparent coup, a spokesman for her ruling party said Monday, declaring a one-year state of emergency. The dramatic escalation came after weeks of rising tensions between the military, which ruled the country for nearly five decades, and the civilian government over allegations of fraud in November's elections. The military last week refused to rule out seizing power to settle its claims of irregularities in the polls, which Suu Kyi's National League for Democracy (NLD) party won easily. Myo Nyunt, the spokesman for the NLD, said Suu Kyi, along with President Win Myint, had been "detained" in the capital Naypyidaw. "We heard they were taken by the military," he told AFP, adding that he was extremely worried about the pair.........Read more

Hyderabad's city lights killing astronomy, enthusiasts, scientists complain

The past few weeks saw various rare astronomical events, the Jupiter-Saturn conjunction, the triple conjunction of Mercury, Jupiter and Saturn, the Moon passing Mars- but astronomy enthusiasts in the city say that it is no more a thrill to witness these space events, because of the city lights. Light pollution is a menace in the city of Hyderabad which is killing the joy of looking up to the night sky, astronomy enthusiasts and scientists have complained. Praveen Suryavanshi, an amateur astronomer and educator said that just to witness a full dark sky, one now will have to travel as far as at leasta 100 kms away from the city.........Read more

In a rare feat, Indian Army horse awarded Chief's commendation

An Indian Army horse was awarded the Chief of Army Staff commendation for his stellar services being the part of the Republic Day parade for 18 consecutive years. The commendation was given to Rio, a 22-year-old horse on Sunday at a ceremony held at the Cariappa Ground in Delhi Cantt. Indian Army Chief Gen MM Naravane pinned the commendation medal. Rio is the most experienced member of the Republic Day parade making an appearance for the last 18 years. He is the first horse from Indian Army’s 61 Cavalry- the only functional horse regiment in the world get the award. Rio is no stranger to the limelight and has been seen upfront year after year leading the horses as he is also the contingent commander’s charger for the last 16 years. Usually, horses retire at 22 years of age but his alertness and sharp response have meant that he has been going strong even at this ripe age.........Read more

Social media platform Reddit hit by outages in the U.S.

Users in both the US and Canada reported outages on Reddit for a short period on Saturday, with the company admitting there have been “higher error rates” this week amidst newfound attention on the r/WallStreetBets subreddit. A map on the Downdetector website showed customers reporting issues logging in to Reddit and sending messages, according to Reuters. Regions such as New York, Boston, and Washington, D.C., were affected, as was Toronto. We did have some issues with higher error rates this week...It meant slower load times for some users but we were never hard down,” a spokesperson for Reddit told Reuters about the latest wave of issues. Reddit has been at the center of controversy this week after users from the r/WallStreetBets subreddit kicked off a stock-buying frenzy, significantly adding to the value of companies like GameStop and AMC, which had been struggling in the marketplace. The subreddit has approximately six million members.........Read more

India could introduce legislation to ban cryptocurrencies

India plans to introduce a bill seeking to prohibit all private cryptocurrencies in the country during the budget session of parliament that began Friday. The proposed law will provide a framework for the creation of an official digital currency to be issued by the Reserve Bank of India and allow certain exceptions to promote blockchain, the underlying technology of cryptocurrency and its uses, according to a bulletin of the lower house of parliament. The central bank is looking into the need for a digital version of the fiat currency and how to implement it. India’s monetary policy regulator had in 2018 banned crypto transactions after a string of frauds in the months following Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s sudden decision to ban 80% of the nation’s currency. Cryptocurrency exchanges responded with a lawsuit in the Supreme Court in September and won respite in March 2020. 📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click and stay updated with the latest headlines For all the latest , download ........Read more

From redesigned AirPods to iPad Pro, six things Apple could launch in the first half of 2021

Apple is known for holding four to five launch events in a year. Normally, Apple launches new products at its Spring event, possibly because of , the company may release products via press releases.  Last year, for example, Apple announced a new iPad Pro, Magic Keyboard, and MacBook Air via press releases in March, followed by the launch of the iPhone SE in April. This year, too, we expect Apple to release a ton of new products in the first half of the year. If leakers and reports are to be believed, Apple could release the AirPods 3 and AirPods Pro 2, a new iPad Pro and iPad Mini as well as AirTags and Apple TV sometime during Spring. Here’s what to expect from them—and what else we might see.........Read more

Authoritarianism, majoritarianism played role in 2019 polls: Hamid Ansari in new book

“More recently, a version of nationalism that places cultural commitments at its core and promotes intolerance and arrogant patriotism has tended to intrude into and take over the political and cultural landscape. One manifestation of it is ‘an increasingly fragile national ego’ that threatens to rule out any dissent however innocent. Hyper-nationalism and the closing of the mind is also ‘a manifestation of insecurity about one’s place in the world,” he says. ........Read more

At Minus 8.8, Srinagar Records Coldest Night After 30 Years

Srinagar recorded the coldest night after 30 years, as the temperature plummeted to minus 8.8 degrees Celsius on Sunday. Officials of the meteorological department said the minimum temperature dropped to minus 8.8 in Srinagar. "From today onwards there is going to be perceptible improvement in the night temperatures in both J&K and Ladakh," the officials said adding that the maximum temperature was 2 degrees Celsius in Srinagar on Saturday which is also the lowest maximum recorded this season. Sonam Lotus, director of the MeT department for J&K and Ladakh told IANS that minus 8.8 is the lowest minimum temperature recorded after exactly 30 years in Srinagar. "In 1991 the minimum temperature recorded was minus 11.8 in Srinagar," Lotus said. The 40-day long period of harsh winter cold known locally as the 'Chillai Kalan' ends on Sunday, but not without leaving an indelible mark in the record book for ushering in one of Kashmir's coldest winters in living memory.........Read more

Energy Drink Can Used for Embassy Blast, Probe Team Suspects; 'Odd' Explosives Mix Casts More Doubt

A team of National Security Guard (NSG) investigates the site of the blast near Israel Embassy. A team from the National Bomb Data Centre (NBDC) of the NSG has found an energy drink can that it suspects was used for blast near the Israeli Embassy. Sources told News18 that the can could have been used to hide the circuit board device that was also found at the spot, and was "possibly attached to a timer". Sources further said that the (pentaerythritol tetranitrate) in the device, which was confirmed through a lab test, was found along with aluminium. "This kind of mix is contradictory because one is high explosive and another is low explosive," a source said, adding that the final results will come on Sunday. Energy drink can found at the blast spot. (CNN-News18)........Read more

Where Did the Term 'Horsepower' Come From?

In his 1702 book The Miner’s Friend, English inventor and engineer Thomas Savery has written: “So that an engine which will raise as much water as two horses, working together at one time in such a work, can do, and for which there must be constantly kept ten or twelve horses for doing the same. Then I say, such an engine may be made large enough to do the work required in employing eight, ten, fifteen, or twenty horses to be constantly maintained and kept for doing such a work…” ........Read more

How a Space Elevator Would Work

Konstantin Tsiolkovsky first described a space elevator in 1895. Tsiolkovksy proposed building a tower from the surface up to geostationary orbit, essentially making an incredibly tall building. The problem with his idea was that the structure would be crushed by all the weight above it. Modern concepts of space elevators are based on a different principle — tension. The elevator would be built using a cable attached at one end to the Earth's surface and to a massive counterweight at the other end, above geostationary orbit (35,786 km). Gravity would pull downward on the cable, while centrifugal force from the orbiting counterweight would pull upward. The opposing forces would reduce the stress on the elevator, compared with building a tower to space.........Read more

Xiaomi Unveils New Wireless Charging Tech That Works Over the Air

Xiaomi’s Mi Air Charge uses millimetre-wide waves to charge devices remotely Xiaomi on Friday announced the Mi Air Charge, a new wireless charging tech as its proprietary technology. As its name suggests, Mi Air Charge is designed to let users remotely charge their electronic devices including smartphones without any cables, pads, or wireless charging stands. This is unlike existing wireless charging technologies like the ones based on the widely adopted Qi standard in which the power transfers wirelessly using inductive charging over a distance of up to four centimetres. Xiaomi's Mi Air Charge is claimed to charge multiple devices “within a radius of several metres” — and even with physical obstacles. Despite the announcement, the tech will not become generally available in the near future, and remains in a concept phase.........Read more

Explained: What is the ‘Doomsday Clock’ now just 100 secs away from apocalypse?

The hands of the ‘Doomsday Clock’, a visual depiction of how vulnerable the world is to a climate or nuclear catastrophe, remained at ‘100 seconds to midnight’ for the second consecutive year — the closest it has been to the symbolic annihilation of humanity. It is 100 seconds to midnight,” the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists, the nonprofit group that created the clock in 1947, announced on Wednesday. Last year, the hands of the clock moved from two minutes to 100 seconds for the first time in history, indicating an unprecedented existential threat to humanity. But the panel of scientists has said that there is some hope this year, with US President Joe Biden’s plans to rejoin the Paris Agreement and ramp up the country’s efforts to combat climate change. The group, however, urged world leaders to do more to cut down carbon emissions in their countries.........Read more

Padma Shri Ramchandra Manjhi and Dulari Devi: Tale of two artists, and of art, caste and grit in Bihar

Among the Padma Shri awardees chosen this year are two Dalit artists from Bihar, Ramchandra Manjhi, a ‘naach’ performer, and Dulari Devi, a Mithila painter. To reach Manjhi and Dulari, the national honour has travelled a long way, down dirt roads and mud tracks, to their houses in caste-divided, poverty-stricken Bihar villages. And both the new Padma Shris say it is their life circumstances that give their art the vitality that makes it shine bright, winning alike the hearts of their villagers and national awards. Ramchandra Manji –– ‘Refinement at the cost of popular connect is stupid’........Read more

India Emerges As Fastest Nation In The World To Surpass Three Million Covid-19 Vaccination Milestone: Health Ministry

India has emerged as the fastest nation in the world to vaccinate more than three million people, as per the Union Ministry of Health data, Hindustan Times. India has achieved the feat in just 13 days, much faster than the United States which took 18 days to surpass the three million milestone. Meanwhile, Israel and the United Kingdom took 33 and 36 days respectively to cover three million people. India was also the fastest to surpass vaccination of a million as well as two million people. It should be noted that India initiated its vaccination drive only on 16 January, much later than the other three aforementioned nations. From an average of 2 lakh people getting vaccinated on a day while the vaccination drive started on 16 January, the per day number has jumped to five lakh, as the number of sites and sessions has also gone up. The vaccination in India has been led by states like Uttar Pradesh (2,94,959), Karnataka (2,86,089), Rajasthan (2,57,833) and Maharashtra (2,20,587).........Read more

Farmers' Protest: Mobile Internet, SMS Services Suspended in 17 Haryana Districts

The Haryana government has suspended mobile internet and SMS services across 17 of the 22 districts in the state – areas from where there were reports of farmers continuing their mobilisation to join forces with the protesters at Delhi borders.........Read more

From Getting Back Pre-Pandemic Growth to New Bank Clean-Up, 5 Takeaways From Economic Survey

The pre-budget document came out strongly swinging in favour of the new farm laws, spent some time on India's food bill and espoused an 'expansionary' fiscal stance. PTI The Economic Survey on Friday, January 29, sought to place the tumultous economic events of last year in context and projected that with the roll-out of the COVID-19 vaccine, India will post GDP growth of 11% in FY’22. While double-digit growth is welcome, the Survey is quick to add that when combined with the 7.7% contraction in GDP in FY’21, India’s GDP in FY’22 will be only 2.4% more than what was recorded in FY’20. The 2020-2021 survey, which is authored by Chief Economic Adviser Krishnamurthy Subramanian, is an annual flagship assessment of the Indian economy and key developments or policies.........Read more

New advisory for COVID patients, WHO warns against high-dose anticoagulants

"The other things in the guidance that are new are that COVID-19 patients at home should have the use of pulse oximetry, that's measuring the oxygen levels, so you can identify whether somewhat at home is deteriorating and would be better off having hospital care," WHO spokeswoman Margaret Harris told a United Nations briefing in Geneva. The WHO advised clinicians to put patients into the awake prone position, on their front, shown to improve the oxygen flow, she said. "Also we recommend, we suggest the use, of low-dose anticoagulants to prevent blood clots forming in blood vessels. We suggest the use of lower doses rather than higher doses because higher doses may lead to other problems," Harris said. She added that a WHO-led team of independent experts, currently in the central Chinese city of Wuhan where the first human cases were detected in December 2019, is due to leave quarantine in the next two days to pursue its work with Chinese researchers on the virus origins.........Read more

Israel Embassy blast: CCTV footage shows 2 suspects getting out of cab at site after explosion

A Special Cell of Delhi Police investigating the blast near the Israel Embassy in the national capital on January 29 scanned footage of CCTV cameras installed nearby and spotted a vehicle moving suspiciously near the embassy just before the explosion. Sources told Zee News that police examining CCTV footage of the area where the blast took place yesterday came across a clip that showed two suspects deboarding a cab and moving towards the site after the explosion. Sources added that police identified the vehicle and is seeking details about the two suspected people from the driver. ........Read more

Go eco-friendly with Vani Murthy, Bengaluru-based zero-waste Insta influencer

With videos on composting tips and other zero-waste hacks such as bio enzymes and zero-waste recipes, Vani Murthy has become a household name. There is always a turning point in everyone’s life. For Vani Murthy, that happened as long ago as in 2007, when an acquaintance told her that if one tonne of paper waste could be collected and given for recycling, about 17 trees would be saved. “That statistics sunk into me,” says Vani Murthy. Vani is a major sustainable and zero-waste influencer with over a hundred thousand followers on . With extensive videos on composting tips, instructions and other zero-waste hacks such as bio enzymes and zero-waste recipes, Vani Murthy has become a part of several households which have begun to adopt such sustainable practices in their lives.........Read more

The 1,700km journey to deliver coronavirus vaccine to India’s rural health workers

Reena Jani rose early, finished her chores in the crisp January cold and walked uphill to the road skirting her remote tribal hamlet of Pendajam in eastern India. Riding pillion on a neighbour's motorcycle for 40 minutes through hillsides dotted with paddy fields, the 34-year-old tribal health worker headed for the Mathalput Community Health Centre. Jani's name was on a list of 100 health workers at the centre, making her one of the first Indians to be inoculated against COVID-19 earlier this month, as the country rolls out a vaccination programme the government calls the world's biggest. But she had heard rumours of serious side effects and worried about what would happen were she to get ill. "I was frightened because of my son and daughters. If something happens to me, what will they do?" Jani told Reuters, visibly relieved after the injection produced no immediate side effects.........Read more

CBSE says its facial recognition tool is a ‘face matching algorithm’: RTI

CBSE’s controversial facial recognition tool—which the organisation had earlier said didn’t need a privacy policy—uses a “face matching algorithm”, the organisation in an RTI filed by Delhi-based digital rights group Internet Freedom Foundation. This is a difference from the CBSE’s earlier admission that its facial recognition tool was a “simple face matching process”. It also revealed that the facial matching program was developed using open source technologies in Python and OpenCV.........Read more

What makes Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine different? We break it down

Another big advantage of the vaccine made by Johnson & Johnson is that it doesn’t have to be kept in freezers. The New Brunswick, N.J., pharmaceutical giant anticipates that the vaccine can remain stable for two years at -20 degrees Celsius, at least three months of which can be at 2-8 degrees Celsius. This makes it easy for supply chain logistics, such as transportation and storage. Johnson & Johnson said it would ship the COVID-19 vaccine using the same cold-chain methods it uses for other types of medicines.........Read more

Why U.S. tech giants are obsessed with ShareChat, India’s hot social network

Tech giants are running out of avenues for growth. In the search for their next batch of users, most of them have turned their attention to India, where more people have logged onto the internet for the first time in the last couple of years than the U.S.’s entire online population. And one startup has emerged as their hot ticket into the country’s most idiosyncratic audience: ShareChat. ........Read more

The future of travel: Where do we go from here?

“Moving is living,” says George Clooney’s Ryan Bingham in Up in the Air, a film that now feels like an artifact from an ancient civilization. But what happens when much of the world stops moving, at least temporarily, to save lives? For one thing, global daily carbon emissions plunged 17% in April thanks in large part to grounded planes and empty highways—a glimpse of a more local and sustainable future. But no one wants to hibernate forever.........Read more

Google Maps Will Auto-Translate Places In These 10 Regional Languages: Full List, Features, USPs

Google’s newest blog has announced the addition of 10 new languages to the Google Maps application on their phones. Read on to find out which languages have been introduced in Google Maps now! As much as 75% of the population of India interacts with the internet through their native language. The next five years are expected to increase this number to 90%. As per the blog by Google, some users are unable to find their destinations on Maps in their native language. To address this issue, Google Maps is introducing automatic transliteration that will help users to get a more accurate and intuitive language experience. It will also enable them to make queries in the language that they are comfortable with.........Read more

GameStop Stock Explained: Robinhood, Short Squeezes, And Reddit

GameStop's stock has become a battleground this past week, as you've likely seen on social media. The ongoing feud between short-seller Citron Research and Reddit trading community r/wallstreetbets has made mainstream news at this point, with politicians like Elizabeth Warren weighing in and the White House officially "monitoring" the situation. GameStop's stock price continues to fluctuate wildly and has gone both up and down over the last several days.........Read more

Virat Kohli uses an 'MRF bat'. Rohit Sharma uses a 'CEAT bat'. But whose bat do they really use?

The process is straightforward: bat-making companies scout for young talents in domestic cricket, often with the help of reputed former players, in order to catch them early at a reasonable price. They then sign yearly contracts which state that the player must use the manufacturer’s logo in return for a fixed payment and a set number of bats for the season. This is beneficial to both parties – the player gets income and equipment while the manufacturer gets advertisement. ........Read more

With a new policy, India aims to understand the impact of the Arctic region on its monsoon

India has been invested in the Arctic region for years and to secure its share of the pie that the region offers in terms of research and resources, including minerals, the Indian government has now unveiled a . It envisages India’s engagement in the Arctic region for climate research, environmental monitoring, maritime cooperation, and energy security. The policy was put online earlier this month and comments have been sought on it by Jan. 26.........Read more

China sharpens language, warns Taiwan that independence 'means war'

China toughened its language towards Taiwan on Thursday, warning after recent stepped up military activities near the island that “independence means war” and that its armed forces were acting in response to provocation and foreign interference. Taiwan, claimed by China as its own territory, reported multiple Chinese fighter jets and bombers entering its southwestern air defence identification zone last weekend, prompting Washington to urge Beijing to stop pressuring Taiwan. China believes that Taiwan’s democratically-elected government is moving the island towards a declaration of formal independence, though Taiwan President Tsai Ing-wen has repeatedly said it is already an independent country called the Republic of China, its formal name. Asked at a monthly news briefing about the air force’s recent activities, Chinese Defence Ministry spokesman Wu Qian said Taiwan is an inseparable part of China.........Read more

Taken COVID-19 jab? Delay pregnancy for at least two months, say doctors

Meanwhile, the Centre has stated that pregnant and lactating women have not been part of any Covid vaccine clinical trial so far and should not receive the vaccine at this time. Representational Image. (File Photo) Even as the World Health Organisation said on Thursday that some vaccines are not safe for pregnant women, gynaecologists and fertility experts in India have urged people planning to have a baby to wait until two months after they get the vaccine against Covid-19. “While vaccine developers are not saying that people should postpone pregnancy, including through IVF, we are urging women to wait two months after taking the jab to get pregnant,” said Dr Suman Singh, renowned gynaecologist from BirthRight by Rainbow Children’s Hospitals. She said that the European Society of Human Reproduction and Embryology (ESHRE) has reaffirmed its earlier guidance for safe Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) practices.........Read more

Microsoft's Taj Mahal-Inspired Development Centre in Noida Unveiled, Take a Look at This Stunning Office

Microsoft data centre in Nodia Microsoft has announced the launch of its new India Development Centre (IDC) facility in Delhi NCR - Noida which is inspired by the Taj Mahal. The new facility will serve as a "premier hub" for its engineers to design cutting-edge technology for its users globally, the Redmon-based software giant said in a blog post. The Noida-based Microsoft IDC is the third centre in India after Bengaluru and Hyderabad. Microsoft adds that the centre will provide opportunities for engineering talent in the areas of business and productivity tools, Artificial Intelligence (AI), cloud and enterprise, core services, and the new gaming division.........Read more

Why India's Vaccines Are Exported But Not Sold In Market For Public Use

For now, the government has procured 11 million doses to vaccinate priority groups India has started shipping out millions of doses of Covishield free of cost. On the list are 13 nations -- Bangladesh, Bhutan, Maldives, Mongolia, Myanmar, Nepal, Bahrain, Brazil, Mauritius, Morocco, Oman, Seychelles and Sri Lanka. But while the move improves the country's standing internationally, there are questions why the government is not allowing the sale of the vaccine in private markets. Several leading health and pharma experts such as Kiran Mazumdar Shaw has appealed to the government to allow private players to roll out the drug as well, since capacity is not a problem in India and all government targets are being met. "We need to vaccinate 2m per day n unless private hospitals start vaccinating general population we will struggle to keep pace with vaccine production which far outweighs utilisation. Unlike other countries we don't have shortage of supplies," she tweeted.........Read more

The 21 Param Vir Chakra Awardees Every Indian Should Know And Be Proud Of

The Param Vir Chakra (PVC) is India's highest military decoration, awarded for displaying distinguished acts of valour during wartime. Param Vir Chakra translates as the "Greatest of the Ultimate Brave", and the award is granted for "most conspicuous bravery in the presence of the enemy". From Captain Vikram Batra to Major Somnath Sharma here are the heroes whose acts of supreme and selfless bravery have won the country's highest wartime gallantry award. Indiatimes1. Major Somnath Sharma - Major Somnath Sharma was the first person to receive the Param Vir Chakra Award. Major Sharma, with a broken arm, staved off the enemy attacking the Badgam aerodrome and Srinagar.  Naik Singh was commanding a forward post when the enemy attacked. We suffered heavy losses. Eventually, Singh somehow saved his troops but fell to the enemy bullets.........Read more

Explained: Who can take the Covid-19 vaccine, and who are advised not to

The Health Ministry on January 14 circulated a note on precautions and contraindications (reasons not to give the vaccine to certain people). The vaccine is only for people above the age of 18. Interchangeability is not allowed, which means that the second dose should be of the same vaccine (Covishield or ) that was given as the first dose. For acutely unwell or hospitalised patients due to any illness, vaccination can be deferred for four to eight weeks after recovery. Pregnancy alters the body’s immune system and its response to viral infections in general, which can occasionally be reflected in more severe symptoms. This holds true for Covid-19 as well. Pregnant or lactating women have not been part of any Covid-19 vaccine clinical trial, and so women who are pregnant or not sure of their pregnancy, as well as lactating women, should not receive the vaccine at this time, experts have said. This is also part of the Health Ministry advisory.........Read more

Explained: History & precedent of President’s address in Parliament

The first Parliament session of 2021 will begin on Friday with President Ram Nath Kovind addressing members of both Houses of Parliament. If he does not stand for re-election, it will be his second-last address to Parliament. In his speech, there will be an indication of the government’s plans and focus areas for the year ahead. While his address will mark the beginning of the session, it will not constitute a joint sitting of the two Houses.........Read more

More Made-in-India Vaccines Will Come in Days to Come, Says PM Modi at World Economic Forum

Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday addressed the World Economic Forum’s Davos Dialogue via video conferencing and said India will produce more vaccines in the days to come against coronavirus. He said that the World Economic Forum will be relieved to know that in the time to come many more vaccines will come from India. “Right now there are two made in India vaccines. World Economic Forum will be relieved to know that in the time to come many more vaccines will come from India,” PM Modi said. Prime Minister Narendra Modi at World Economic Forum's Davos Agenda He added that India has vaccinated more than 2.3 million healthcare workers in just 12 days and in the next some months, the country will achieve the target of vaccinating 300 million elderly people and people with comorbidities.........Read more

Facebook Will no Longer Suggest Political Groups to Users Globally, Says Zuckerberg

Facebook CEO Mark Zuckerberg on Wednesday announced that the social media company will not recommend civic and political groups to its users on the platform anymore. The decision comes in view of repeated proceedings regarding the firm’s alleged bias towards certain political inclinations and in the aftermath of US Capitol riots. Facebook had in October, in the run-up to US Presidential Elections said that it was temporarily halting recommendations of political groups. The social media giant also said that it would make this a permanent effort and expand the policy globally. It was aiming to polish off the image tarnished by political controversy by reducing political content to “turn down the temperature and discourage divisive conversation.”. ........Read more

Apple might shift iPhones, iPads, Macs production to India and Vietnam: Report

Apple plans on shifting production of its iPhones, iPads and MacBooks to India and Vietnam. This means that the iPhone 12 series could be next in line to sport a Made in India tag. The report was listed on the . According to the sources, Apple is likely to start iPad production in Vietnam as early as 2021 and will commence production of its first iPhone 12 series 5G smartphones in India, within this quarter. tech2/Nandini Yadav Other Apple products that could see a shift in production out of China includes Apple computers, earphones and smart speakers, which would be the part of the diversification strategy. Apple so far hasn't responded to queries.........Read more

'India's COVID-19 vaccine production capacity one of world's best assets': UN Secretary-General Antonio Guterres

India is one of the world's best assets in the fight against Covid-19 because of its ability to supply the vaccines needed to fight the pandemic and the UN counts on it, according to Secretary-General Antonio Guterres. "I think that the production capacity of India is one of the best assets the world has today, and I hope the world understands that it must be fully used," he said on Thursday at his news conference. "I would like to say how much we count on India. I mean, India has one of the most advanced pharmaceutical industries." On Monday, India's Permanent Representative T.S. Tirumurti told the Security Council that his nation's vaccine-making capacity would be for "the benefit of the entire humanity". Guterres described the development of India as a pharmaceutical powerhouse as "a very important element of democratisation of access to medicines all over the world". The UN chief said that the world body was in contact with Indian institutions regarding the vaccines produced by the country.........Read more

DNA Explainer: What is Economic Survey and why is it important?

The Economic Survey is a roadmap for the country's economy and will set the tone for this year's Budget. The Economic Survey presents a review of how the Indian economy performed in the financial year, features the performance of major development programmes and highlights the policy initiatives of the government.........Read more

Future of travel: Here’s what an actual ride in Hyperloop feels like

Months after Tanay Manjrekar became the first Indian to take a Hyperloop ride, Virgin has unveiled a passenger experience video that takes the viewer on a step-by-step process from arriving at the portal to boarding the pod. An actual passenger ride on the Hyperloop could be several years away. But the video gives a glimpse of how travel times between cities can be crunched dramatically. As the passenger walks into the pod station, the ticket is booked, a pod and seat allocated. DH Deciphers | Hyperloop: How fast and how soon? Getting into the concourse is a breeze through a metro-like access gate. Now Boarding. The passenger then enters a window-less pod, seating 28.........Read more

Here's what Elon Musk said to Reddit users 'punishing' Wall Street

For some Reddit users, GameStop's dizzying rocket ride on Wall Street is a case of the masses rebelling against one-percenters hoarding the world's wealth. The social media-fueled movement has sent shares in the US video game retail chain soaring from less than $20 weeks ago to a peak of $492 on Thursday, dearly costing hedge funds that bet GameStop stock would tank. GameStop shares ended the formal trading day down some 44 per cent as some cashed out. But they lifted off anew after-hours, after Tesla chief Elon Musk seemingly urged individual investors to punish hedge funds for short selling, tweeting \"Get Shorty.\" A Reddit group — or \"sub-reddit\" — called WallStreetBets that boasts some 4.7 million members has been an online rallying spot for those urging people to buy and hold GameStop shares, punishing short sellers by sending prices soaring.........Read more

WhatsApp To Rollout New Biometric Security Layer For Users Linking App To Desktop

In order to enhance user security, instant messaging app WhatsApp on Thursday announced that it is bringing in an additional layer of protection for users linking their WhatsApp account to their computer. With the addition of the new feature, users who link their desktops to WhatsApp will now be asked for verification through fingerprint or face ID. The Facebook-owned company said it will use the face or fingerprint unlock, where it is available on the mobile phone operating system, to facilitate the new security feature. "In order to link WhatsApp Web or Desktop to your WhatsApp account, you will now be asked to use your face or fingerprint unlock on your phone, before scanning a QR code from the phone to link your device. This will limit the chance that a housemate or officemate (when we have those again) can link devices to your WhatsApp account without you," WhatsApp said in a blogpost.........Read more

Novavax Vaccine Seems 89 Per Cent Effective Against New Covid Strain: UK Study

Novavax Inc. said Thursday that its Covid-19 vaccine appears 89 per cent effective based on early findings from a British study and that it also seems to work — though not quite as well — against new mutated strains of the virus circulating in that country and South Africa. The announcement comes amid worry about whether a variety of vaccines being rolled out around the world will be strong enough to protect against worrisome new variants – and also the world needs new types of shoots to boost scarce supplies. The study of 15,000 people in Britain is still underway. But an interim analysis found 62 participants so far have been diagnosed with Covid-19 – only six of them in the group that got vaccine and the rest who received dummy shots.........Read more

Is Truecaller Really Being True?

“You have my number, but you don’t have my consent.” That was the line, with the hashtag #ItsNotOK, used in a series of recent front-page ads in major Indian dailies by Truecaller, a caller id and spam blocking app infamous for it history of data breaches and intrusion of privacy. InMay 2019, Privacy International (PI), a UK-registered charity that promotes the right to privacy at an international level, published a story “concerning a journalist who was placed at risk due to the use of Truecaller by one of her sources”. Chloe (name changed by PI) is an investigative journalist working for international broadcast service.........Read more

More men are infertile than would like to accept: Why is male infertility on a rise?

Infertility is a significant health problem affecting around 15 percent of couples. Over the last few years, the discovery of declining trend of semen quality over past decades has become a major concern. When a couple is diagnosed with fertility related issues, first thoughts often run to the woman. As nature would have it, problems with infertility are equally due to male and female conditions, says Dr. Nameeta Mokashi Bhalerao, Senior Consultant, Cloudnine Group of Hospitals, Pune. "Infertility is defined as the failure to achieve a pregnancy after 12 months of regular unprotected intercourse. However it is important to understand that this is not just a female problem. And the male are equally responsible," she says. What causes male infertility?........Read more

8-yr-old Indian boy in Johns Hopkins 'brightest students in the world' list

Advay Misra, 8, an Indian student in New York, has been named among 1,400 of the "brightest students in the world" by the Johns Hopkins Center for Talented Youth (CTY) in Baltimore which counts among its alumni the founders of Facebook and Google, Rhodes Scholars and MacArthur Fellows. Hopkins said Misra, a student at PS 59 Beekman Hill International Elementary School, was honoured for "exceptional performance on the SAT, ACT, or similar assessment" taken by 15,000 students in grades two through eight as part of CTY's Talent Search program. Test scores are based on above-grade level testing. More than 15,000 students from the US, Europe and 70 other countries in grades two through eight tested through CTY's Talent Search over 12 months ending June 2020. Nearly 1,400 students finished in the top 9 per cent, like Advay Misra. Five test takers got a perfect score on the reading or math section. More than 160 testers under age 13 scored 700 or higher on the math or verbal section of the SAT.........Read more

Airtel announces 5G-ready network through live demonstration

In a statement, Airtel said that it has done this over its existing liberalised spectrum in the 1800 MHz band through the NSA (non-standalone) network technology. Telecom major Bharti Airtel on Thursday announced that it has become the country's first telecom operator to successfully demonstrate and orchestrate live 5G service over a commercial network in Hyderabad city. In a statement, Airtel said that it has done this over its existing liberalised spectrum in the 1800 MHz band through the NSA (non-standalone) network technology. "Using a first-of-its-kind dynamic spectrum sharing, Airtel seamlessly operated 5G and 4G concurrently within the same spectrum block. This demonstration has emphatically validated the 5G readiness of Airtel's network across all domains - Radio, Core and Transport," it said. As per the company, Airtel 5G is capable of delivering 10x speeds, 10x latency and 100x concurrency when compared with existing technologies.........Read more

These former royal retreats in south India promise a luxurious vacation

From Mysuru to Kochi, the palaces-turned-hotels retain the grandeur of the past. It was in the late eighties that a few enterprising individuals like Aman Nath and the late Francis Wacziarg pioneered the concept of heritage hospitality. The Neemrana duo, among others, transformed several heritage properties into hotels, realising their commercial potential and manifoldadvantages like restoration and preservation of the property’s magnificence and plentiful foreign exchange through foreign tourists. With these objectives, the owners opened their doors to visitors by converting them into atmospheric hotels known as heritage hotels; and the ‘heritage state’ of Rajasthan metamorphosed into the most popular destination for inbound tourism. Though the concept of heritage hospitality is said to have originated in Rajasthan, India’s heritage heartland,one can find a smattering of palace hotels in south India as well.For us, these were a welcome relief from the monotony of star-hotels.........Read more

Rescuing Tibet from Chinese aggression

Rescuing Tibet from Chinese aggression A 19-year-old Tibetan monk has reportedly died of injuries sustained in Chinese prison on January 19 in Tibet after he was released in a comatose state by Chinese authorities recently. Tenzin Nyima (also known as Tamey) who was a monk from Dza Wonpo Monastery in Wonpo Township in Kardze, in eastern Tibet's so-called Sichuan Province held a peaceful demonstration outside the local police station calling for Tibet's independence. He was arrested on November 7, 2019. ........Read more

Ban on International Scheduled Passenger Flights Extended Till February 28

The DGCA on Thursday extended its ban on international scheduled passenger flights until February 28. However, international passenger flights under air travel bubble arrangements can continue. "The restrictions shall not apply to international all-cargo operations and flights specifically approved by DGCA," the aviation regulator said in a notification issued on Thursday. India had announced a total ban on flights since the first nationwide lockdown in March last year to combat the coronavirus pandemic.........Read more

Why Red Hat killed CentOS—a CentOS board member speaks

Exelbierd spoke to Anderson to give an insider's perspective on Red Hat's effective termination of CentOS Linux in December, in which the open source giant announced CentOS Linux was to be deprecated immediately—with security upgrades to CentOS Linux 8 ending later in 2021 rather than the 2029 end of support date CentOS users expected. ........Read more

Why Coronavirus is mutating? All you need to know about UK, South African, Brazil variants of Covid-19

The apprehensions over newly traced variants of SARS-CoV-2 that cause Covid-19 continue to grow even though there are multiple vaccines and the vaccination is going on a war footing in several countries including India. There are primary concerns that these new variants may negate the immunogenicity of the currently available vaccines against Covid-19. Viruses have a genetic code in form of Deoxyribonucleic acid (DNA) or Ribonucleic acid (RNA). Cells do multiply and DNA manages to replicate. However, during the process of replication, errors are randomly introduced into the DNA. There are enzymes in our cells that rectify these mistakes. However, there are no enzymes to rectify such mistakes in the case of RNA. That’s the reason why the RNA virus tends to undergo more genetic changes. or mutations, as per a report by Indian Express report.........Read more

India, Then And Now: How The Country Has Changed From 1950 | Forbes India

From population to sex ratio, number of women in the parliament to water availability per person, a look at how the country has evolved from its first Republic Day to its 72nd. ........Read more

Intel’s new desktop GPUs won’t work in AMD systems

Intel’s first desktop GPUs in 20 years need a special BIOS Intel launched its first Iris Xe desktop graphics cards yesterday, but you won’t see them appearing in AMD-powered systems. While Nvidia and AMD’s desktop GPUs typically work across a variety of Intel and AMD processors, Intel’s new desktop GPUs are a little more limited for now. “The Iris Xe discrete add-in card will be paired with 9th gen (Coffee Lake-S) and 10th gen (Comet Lake-S) Intel® Core™ desktop processors and Intel(R) B460, H410, B365, and H310C chipset-based motherboards and sold as part of pre-built systems,” says an Intel spokesperson in a . “These motherboards require a special BIOS that supports Intel Iris Xe, so the cards won’t be compatible with other systems.”........Read more

OnePlus co-founder Carl Pei’s next company is literally called Nothing

It describes itself as a “London based consumer technology company” and counts the likes of iPod inventor Tony Fadell, Twitch co-founder Kevin Lin, Reddit CEO Steve Huffman, and YouTuber Casey Neistat as investors. It plans to release its first “smart devices” in the first half of this year. “Nothing’s mission is to remove barriers between people and technology to create a seamless digital future,” says Pei, Nothing’s founder and CEO, in a press release. “We believe that the best technology is beautiful, yet natural and intuitive to use. When sufficiently advanced, it should fade into the background and feel like nothing.”........Read more

Keep your brain in shape by reading more books

Science has found that reading is essential for a healthy brain. We already know reading is good for children’s developing noggins: A study of twins published by the Society for Research in Child Development found that kids who started reading at an earlier age went on to perform better on certain intelligence tests, such as analyses of their vocabulary size. ........Read more

From Snow Chairs To Ice Tables: India’s First Igloo Cafe Comes Up In Kashmir Valley

Gulmarg has become home to India's first and Asia’s biggest Igloo Cafe, started by the Kolahoi Green Group of Hotels and Resorts in Gulmarg. This is a one-of-a-kind experience that is being unveiled in the Kashmir Valley. AFP Kashmir's Gulmarg is a popular skiing destination, located in the Pir Panjal range. Start a conversation, not a fire. Post with kindness. Get the NEWS that fits your groove. Subscribe to Indiatimes and get handpicked updates based on your interests!........Read more

Scientists Invent Laser Surgery To Kill Cancer Cells Without Harming Healthy Tissues

Cancer has affected the lives of many around the world. Whether it’s the fear of surviving, the treatments or even the cost of the treatment. And it’s a whole lot worse when the resurfaces.  However, now researchers have developed a novel system that will ensure appropriate elimination of the without really harming the healthy ones. . Professor Jonathan Shepard, the lead researcher on this study said in a statement, "We proved in the lab that our laser system can remove cancer cells in a way that restricts damage to the surrounding, healthy cells - within the width of a human hair." Shepard added, "We're building on our understanding of lasers in colorectal cancer surgery towards clinical application, and working on adapting it for brain, head and neck cancers, where it could have huge benefits for patients. The most important principle of any cancer surgery is to ensure that all cancer cells are removed; failure to do so will result in the cancer coming back."........Read more

Where is India’s Marcus Rashford? Sports stars enjoy hero status but rarely speak out

UK’s Marcus Rashford showed an elite sportsperson can use popularity and influence to speak out for social change. But it is not something that happens nearly enough in India. Many are now familiar with Marcus Rashford’s story. At the start of 2020, he was already a football star and a household name in the United Kingdom (UK). But in the early days of the lockdown, Rashford helped raise nearly £20 million to provide meals for vulnerable people reminding the British public about his personal experiences of growing up with a single parent who struggled to feed her five children.........Read more

Due to Global Warming, Earth Lost 28 Trillion Tonnes Of Ice From 1994 To 2017

It’s been years that we’ve been hearing that ice in the Polar Regions is melting and that’s causing a rise in the water levels. This will lead to irreversible damage to human and animal life in the future. Recently, a new research has revealed that approximately 28 trillion tonnes of ice has melted from our planet between the year 1994 and 2017. To understand it better – this much ice can easily cover the entire United Kingdom – yes, you read that right! According to a study published conducted by researchers from the University of Leeds – this is the first-ever global survey of ice loss based on data collected from satellites around our planet. Around 215,000 mountain glaciers spread around the planet, ice shelves floating around Antarctica, the polar ice sheets in Greenland as well as Antarctica, and sea ice drifting in the Arctic and Southern Oceans were looked at by the researchers.........Read more

Over 13,000 malware threats detected every hour in 2020, Trojan leads: Report

According to a report by Seqrite, the first quarter of 2020 clocked the highest at 36 million detections, with January witnessing maximum malware attacks. With new techniques targeting a completely new setup of the global enterprise, 13,733 malware threats were detected every hour in 2020, with Trojan leading the year-on-year (YoY) and quarter-on-quarter (QoQ) charts followed by other malware, a report said on Wednesday. According to a report by Seqrite, an enterprise security solutions brand by Quick Heal Technologies, out of the total 113 million malware detections in 2020, the first quarter clocked the highest at 36 million detections, with January witnessing maximum malware attacks. "With the advent of Covid-19, threat actors have realised how they can capitalise on this new opportunity by banking on the new vulnerabilities that have popped up due to remote working or work from home (WFH)," Himanshu Dubey, Director, QuickHeal Security Labs, said in a statement.........Read more

The largest Buddha statue in India is being made in Kolkata

The 'largest Buddha statue' in India is being made in Kolkata. The work is in full swing at the Nainan Bandhab Samiti ground in Ghoshpara, Baranagar. This 100-feet-long Buddha statue will be installed next year on Buddha Purnima in the temple of Buddha International Welfare Mission in Bodh Gaya. Made by famous sculptor Mintu Pal, the statue has been made with fiber glass. "This statue will probably last for thousands of years even after we leave the earth," he said........Read more

Short squeeze explained: Why GameStop jumped 130%, AMC Entertainment shot up 300%

Even as the Dow Jones index fell sharply by over 2 per cent on Wednesday (January 27) after the United States Federal Reserve kept interest rates at near zero and pledged to continue to buy US treasury bonds worth $120 billion every month, shares of GameStop Corp jumped by over 130 per cent to close at $345, taking its market cap to $24 billion. On January 12, the share of GameStop — an American video game and gaming merchandise retailer — closed at under $20 per share. In a matter of 10 trading sessions, the stock has jumped by over 15 times. In a similar trend, the share price of the movie theatre chain AMC Entertainment jumped 300 per cent on Wednesday to close at $19.88, taking its market cap to $6.74 billion. It was only on January 21 that the AMC stock had closed at $2.98 — it has now jumped by over 6 times in a matter of four trading sessions.........Read more

Why fuel prices are rising to historic highs 

Recently, fuel prices have been setting new records each day in India. On January 26, in Mumbai, petrol and diesel cost Rs 92.62 a litre and Rs 83.03, respectively, while in Delhi, the prices were Rs 86.05 a litre and Rs 76.23 a litre, respectively What is causing this surge? For one, prices of Brent crude—the raw material that Indian refiners import—are at around $55.48 a barrel as on January 26. This rise has followed the crash in prices in late March last year, when the world went into a lockdown. At the time, prices fell from over $70 a barrel in January to around $14 a barrel in end-March. By May, however, prices had returned to the $20 mark, and ever since, have trended largely upward. In terms of rising demand for oil, the production and rollout of vaccines for Covid-19 and the rising consumption post the Covid lockdowns last year have both led to a revival in international crude oil prices.........Read more

Explained: How accurate is the anal swab Covid-19 test rolled out in China

At a time when China is witnessing a resurgence in coronavirus cases in pockets of the country, it has begun using , prompting debate and outrage. The anal swab tests have mainly been conducted on residents in China's northern regions and Beijing, where there has been a surge in Covid-19 cases, and those in quarantine facilities. China has recorded more than 89,000 Covid-19 cases and 4,600 deaths. The test involves the insertion of a saline-soaked cotton swab about three to five centimeters (one to two inches) into the anus, according to the Chinese Center for Disease Control and Prevention. The sample is then tested for active traces of the novel coronavirus. However, several people have complained of inconvenience.........Read more

Experts Explain: Viruses, their variants, and vaccines

SARS-CoV-2 variants have emerged independently in several countries, and research published over the past week indicates that the virus is changing more quickly than was once believed — and that it may continue to develop towards evading currently available vaccines. We deconstruct the science, summarise the breaking research, evaluate the concerns, and suggest a prescription for India. Like all life, viruses carry a genetic code in the form of nucleic acids — either DNA or RNA. When cells multiply, the DNA within them replicates as well, to make copies for the new cells. During replication, random errors are introduced into the new DNA, much like spelling errors when we write. Just as we can spell-check, our cells carry enzymes to ‘proofread’ and correct these mistakes to maintain the fidelity of our genetic material.........Read more

Parliament Canteen Drops Subsidy on Food, Now Non-Veg Buffet to Cost Rs 700, Veg Thali at Rs 100

The Parliament will serve an elaborate menu this Budget session, but no more at a stealing price as the Lok Sabha Secretariat does away with the in the canteen for the country’s lawmakers. The cheapest on the menu is a chapatti worth Rs 3, and a non-vegetarian spread of buffet is the most expensive at Rs 700. The vegetarian buffet will cost Rs 500. The revised prices, which will come into effect from January 29 when the Budget Session starts, show most items will be sold at par with market rates. As per the new price list, dishes like Hyderabad Mutton Biryani will be of Rs 65 and boiled vegetables at Rs 12. A vegetarian meal will cost Rs 100, while a plate of Mutton Biryani will now come Rs 150.........Read more

Sensex slips over 550 points in early trade, Nifty dips below 13,800-mark

The frontline equity indices on the BSE and National Stock Exchange (NSE) opened over 1 per cent lower on Thursday ahead of the expiry of January-series futures and options (F&O) contracts later today and weakness in the broader Asian markets. The S&P BSE Sensex fell 588.72 points (1.24 per cent) to 46,821.21 during the opening trade while the Nifty 50 declined 173.30 points (1.24 per cent) to hit an intraday low of 13,794.20. On Wednesday, the (1.94 per cent) to end at 47,409.93 and the broader Nifty slipped 271.40 points (1.91 per cent) to settle below the 14,000-mark at 13,967.50. HDFC Bank, Hindustan Unilever (HUL), Kotak Mahindra Bank and Infosys were the top contributors to Sensex’s fall in the early trade. According to traders, recent foreign fund outflows from the domestic capital markets also had an impact on investor sentiment.........Read more

Man Dies During Sex, 'Extreme Orgasm' Determined as the Cause of Death

A 35-year-old man died after engaging in sexual intercourse with a sex worker and a post mortem has listed "extreme orgasm" as the cause of death. The man, named Charles Majawa, lost consciousness after having sex in Phalombe, Malawi and died shortly afterwards, according to a by The Sun. A post-mortem report has officially listed an extreme orgasm as the cause of his death. After the man had passed out, the woman had discussed with her colleagues before reporting the death. Experts at the Migowi Health Centre determined after a probe that the man had indeed died while in the act. The investigation revealed that the extreme orgasm caused brain vessels in the brain to rupture, leading to his death. According to , the woman will not be held liable for the man's death and no charges have been filed against her.........Read more

Pakistani Pilot Spots UFO Between Lahore and Karachi, Says It May be an 'Artificial Planet'

The Pakistan International Airlines' pilot saw the UFO near Rahim Yar Khan. A Pakistani pilot has claimed that he has spotted a very shiny, unidentified flying object (UFO) in the sky during a domestic flight, Pakistani media has reported. According to Geo News, the Pakistan International Airlines' pilot saw the UFO near Rahim Yar Khan while flying from Lahore from Karachi on a Airbus A-320. He also captured a video of the UFO, which has been shared widely on social media. According to the pilot, the thing he spotted in the sky could be a "space station" or an "artificial planet" near the Earth. Many residents of Rahim Yar Khan also spotted the shiny UFO and made videos of the object.........Read more

Apple’s All Time Record Revenue Numbers Have A Very Distinct India Flavour

Apple has released the latest quarterly numbers and they are, well, record breaking. The company posted an all-time record revenue of $111.4 billion, which is a 21% increase compared with the same quarter last year. in the Q1 2021 results for the quarter which ended in December, Apple says that international sales accounted for as high as 64% of the quarter’s revenue. It was a strong showing for Apple’s entire product line too. The iPhone sales, where no doubt a lot of the interest was in the new series, accounted for almost $66 billion in revenue, while the iPads clocked more than $8.4 billion and the Mac computing devices garnered more than $8.6 billion in revenue. All these numbers are significantly higher than previous year’s comparative quarter.........Read more

Explained: How scientists hope to determine the age of Ram Setu

In possibly a first, Indian scientists will undertake a scientific expedition to date the chain of corals and sediments forming the Ram Setu. Also known as Adam’s bridge, this 48-km long bridge-like structure between India and Sri Lanka finds mention in the Ramayana but little about its formation is known or proven, scientifically. Recently, a central advisory board on archaeology, functioning under the Archaeological Survey of India, , Goa to study the sediments and determine its origin. What is the underwater archaeological project at Ram Setu? CSIR-NIO will undertake a three-year scientific project. “The idea is to see whether Ram Setu is a man-made structure or not. The most important aspect of the project is to establish its age, scientifically. Once it is known, the information can be verified and co-related with its mention in the Ramayana and similar scriptures,” said Prof Sunil Kumar Singh, director, NIO.........Read more

The Shy Finance Chief Behind Tesla's Remarkable Turnaround

Zachary Kirkhorn remains a bit of a mystery to the average investor, but he has made his mark. Tesla Inc. is widely expected to report its sixth consecutive quarterly profit Wednesday -- and potentially its first $1-billion quarter. That follows a remarkable year when Tesla's stock split and skyrocketed, the company joined the S&P 500 Index and it sold almost half a million cars. Two years ago, the world's leading electric carmaker was going through a rough patch. Elon Musk, Tesla's chief executive officer, informed employees in a January 2019 open letter that the company had to reduce headcount by 7% and boost Model 3 production rates to survive. Later that month, the CEO told analysts Tesla needed to cut costs and its vehicle prices to avoid bankruptcy.........Read more

Why do we have different blood types?

This competition is now closed A, B, AB and O. The system for classifying them came about in order to allow safe blood transfusions. Like all cells, red blood cells have molecules on their surface called ‘antigens’. People have different antigens, depending on their genes. We need to pay attention to red blood cell antigens because if you receive a transfusion from someone with different ones, your immune system will attack them, which can cause kidney failure and lung problems. The Austrian doctor Karl Landsteiner identified the most common blood antigens in 1901, which he called A and B. He also found that some people had neither antigen (type O), and in 1902 two of his students discovered that some people have both antigens (type AB).........Read more

How Far Space Telescopes Have Come, How Far They'll Go

Space telescopes are good examples of what modern technology can offer, and we're just getting started. Today, astronomers are able to study objects in our universe that are over thirteen billion light-years from Earth. In fact, the farthest object studied is a galaxy known as , which exists at a distance of 13.39 billion light-years from our Solar System. But since we live in the relativistic universe, where the speed of light is constant, looking deep into space also means looking deep into the past. Ergo, looking at an object that is over 13 billion light-years away means seeing it as it appeared over 13 billion years ago. This allows astronomers to see back to some of the earliest moments in the Universe, which is estimated to be around 13.8 billion years old. And in the future, next-generation instruments will allow them to see even farther, to when the first stars and galaxies formed - a time that is commonly referred to as "Cosmic Dawn."........Read more

The History Behind the Invention of the First Cell Phone

While cell phones are a fairly modern invention — if you consider 1973 modern — the idea of a telephone that could travel with you is as old as the telephone itself. For decades though, the best anyone could offer were bulky, two-way radio devices that were essentially walkie-talkies that filled the trunk of your car. However, a couple of key engineering developments and a classic tale of American business rivalry would help lay the foundation for the device that revolutionized the way people communicate. ........Read more

The race to stop ageing: 10 breakthroughs that will help us grow old healthily

This competition is now closed all of the biggest killers in the modern world, from cancer to heart disease to dementia, affect older people far more often than younger ones. We’ve even seen it with , with the oldest patients hundreds of times more likely to die of the disease than children or young adults. If you add it all up, of the 150,000 deaths that happen every day on Earth, over 100,000 of them are caused by ageing. Deaths from problems like heart disease are preceded by years of physical decline, loss of independence, and so on. the frailty, the forgetfulness, the incontinence… Add all this suffering together, across billions of people, and nothing else comes close. the ageing process that causes them?........Read more

TT Player Mouma Das, Six Other Sportspersons Awarded Padma Shri

Veteran table tennis player Mouma Das and the legendary PT Usha’s coach Madhavan Nambiar were among six sportspersons awarded the prestigious Padma Shri by the Government of India on the eve of the country’s 72nd Republic Day. Besides Mouma and the great athletics coach, better known as OM Nambiar, former India women’s basketball team captain P Anitha, long-distance runner Sudha, former Indian wrestler Virender Singh and para athlete KY Venkatesh have also been honoured with the country’s fourth-highest civilian award in the sports category. Every year, the award winners are announced on the eve of Republic Day. The Padma awardees are felicitated by the President of India. Mouma, who won the Arjuna Award in 2013, became only the second table tennis player after Achanta Sharath Kamal to win the Padma Shri. Sharath won the recognition in 2019.........Read more

Abnormal Goat Kid Born With Large Eye Socket on Its Forehead, People Flock to UP Village to See It

A freak goat kid has become a major attraction for people living in Bijnor district of Uttar Pradesh as hundreds of them are thronging the house of an area villager to see the animal.` The kid has a single large eye socket on its forehead with two pupils. The freakish appearance of the animal is completed by the absence of a well-formed snout and a twisted mouth with a distinct underbite. Masia, a resident of Morahat village in Noorpur police circle jurisdiction, said that he rears goats, one of which gave birth to two kids two days ago. While one was normal, the other was a freak. As soon as the word spread, people started flocking to see the animal. Some even claimed that it was an incarnation of Lord Shiva because of the ‘third eye’ on its forehead. A few people even began to making offerings even as Masia said that he believed it was God’s ‘blessing’ for him.........Read more

Centre Decides to Permanently Ban 59 Chinese Apps Including TikTok, WeChat, SHAReit and Others

The government at the Centre on Monday decided to permanently ban 59 Chinese mobile applications including TikTok. The announcement came several months after the government had first banned Chinese apps temporarily in last June. The government had sought responses from the companies on the show cause notices, but sources said that it is not satisfied with their responses. According to people in the know, the Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology (MeitY) has sent notices to 59 apps including Tiktok. The ministry suspended access to the apps in India last year amid the border tussle with China. It had said that these measures were undertaken on the basis of credible information that these apps are engaged in activities which are prejudicial to sovereignty and integrity of India, defence of India, security of state and public order. ........Read more

26 Facts You Didn’t Know About the Indian Constitution

The final draft of the Indian Constitution which is the longest in the world, was adopted on 26 November 1949 after almost 2 years, 11 months an 17 days. It was legally enforced on 26 January 1950, the day that we celebrate as Republic Day ever since. On 26 January, here are 26 facts that you probably didn’t know about the Indian Constitution. On 2 September 1953 while debating how a Governor in the country should be invested with more powers, Dr Ambedkar argued strongly in favour of amending the Constitution. The original copies of the Indian Constitution were written in Hindi and English. Each member of the Constituent Assembly that drafted the Constitution, signed two copies of the constitution, one in Hindi and the other in English........Read more

Gallantry awards for all 20 soldiers killed in Galwan Valley clash

All the 20 soldiers who had died fighting the Chinese troops in hand-to-hand combat at Galwan Valley in eastern Ladakh on June 15, in which the Chinese had used rods, batons wrapped with barbed wire and other objects, have been awarded gallantry awards posthumously. The awards to these soldiers comprise one Maha Vir Chakra, four Vir Chakras and 15 Sena Medals. One soldier who survived the clash has been awarded a Vir Chakra. Late Colonel B Santosh Babu, commanding officer of the 16 Bihar regiment that was posted in Galwan Valley near Patrolling Point 14 has been awarded the Maha Vir Chakra, the second highest military award. His citation mentioned that “during Operation Snow Leopard”, he was “tasked to establish an Observation Post in face of the enemy”. Organising and briefing his troops about the situation with a sound plan, he successfully executed the task, the citation said.........Read more

IPhone SE Plus Leak Claims 6.1-inch Screen, A14 SoC: Is This the iPhone You Wanted?

iPhone SE Plus has been in the rumour mill for a while, but no such concrete plans have surfaced so far. Now, a new leak by Apple Lab has claimed a rather interesting set of features, specifications and design details with the purported iPhone SE Plus, which suggests that the apparent mid-range device may be introduced by Apple some time soon. The new set of leaked details suggest that the Plus may launch with a 6.1-inch IPS LCD display, while the overall design of the phone is supposedly going to be a hybrid one.........Read more

Late Singer SP Balasubrahmanyam Honoured With Padma Vibhushan

SP Balasubrahmanyam passed away in September 2020. Late singer SP Balasubrahmanyam has been posthumously honoured with the Padma Vibhushan by the President of India, Ramnath Kovind on Monday. The Padma Vibhushan is the second-hightest civilian award in the country. The singer died in September 2020 due to complications from COVID-19. He was admitted at the MGM Health Care hospital in Chennai at the time of his death. He was 74. Most of India came to know of SP Balasubrahmanyam after he sang for actor Kamal Haasan in the 1981 hit Ek Duuje Ke Liye. The Hindi film revolved around two lovers battling cultural differences and parental opposition (Kamal played a Tamilian in love with a north Indian girl played by Rati Agnihotri) and was a tragedy that went to become a blockbuster.........Read more

Heading Towards Herd Immunity: Here's All you Need to Know About Delhi's Latest Sero-Survey

Delhi conducted its fifth sero-prevalence survey in January and the results have revealed that the national capital is inching closer towards attaining herd immunity against Covid-19. The latest sero-survey has found that every second person in Delhi has developed antibodies against the novel coronavirus. This means of the over two crore people residing in Delhi, nearly one crore people have already contracted Covid-19 and recovered from it. Experts say herd immunity is said to have been developed in a population segment if 50-60 per cent of those are found to have the presence of antibodies in a seroprevalence survey.........Read more

How Many Chinese Languages Are There?

Mandarin is the most common language in the world as it is the official language of Mainland China, Taiwan, and one of the official languages of Singapore. Thus, Mandarin is commonly referred to as "Chinese." But in fact, it is just one of many Chinese languages. China is an old and vast country geographically speaking, and the many mountain ranges, rivers, and deserts create natural regional borders. Over time, each region has developed its own spoken language. ........Read more

How the Earth-shaking theory of plate tectonics was born

Scientists have peppered the planet with seismometers that can detect the rumble of moving magma within a volcano, and GPS stations can spot changes in land elevation as magma swells below. But anticipating eruptions remains tricky. For centuries, the outermost layer of Earth was thought to be static, rigid, locked in place. But the theory of plate tectonics has rocked this picture of the planet to its core. Plate tectonics reveals how Earth’s surface is constantly in motion, and how its features — volcanoes, earthquakes, ocean basins and mountains — are intrinsically linked to its hot interior. The planet’s familiar landscapes, we now know, are products of an eons-long cycle in which the planet constantly remakes itself.........Read more

Explained: China's Smear Campaign Against Indian COVID-19 Vaccine Being Supplied To Countries Across Globe

Since the coronavirus pandemic began, India has been at the forefront of supplying medicines and generic drugs to other countries China is expectedly miffed as the quality and efficacy of Chinese vaccines have been questioned due to concealment of test data and lack of transparency Chinese government’s mouthpiece Global Times has started a smear campaign against India’s vaccine diplomacy. India has exported the Covishield vaccine produced by Serum Institute of India to Bangladesh, Bhutan, Nepal, Maldives, Myanmar, Seychelles, Mauritius etc. India is also set to export the vaccine to Afghanistan and Sri Lanka. Apart from this, India has also the vaccine to Saudi Arabia, South Africa, Brazil, Morocco. Many of the recipient countries have so-called vaccine pacts with India on a government-to-government basis to finalize the number of doses and determine whether they will be provided under grant assistance or under commercial terms.........Read more

The Prisoners Who Never Returned: A Moving Account Of Missing Indian Soldiers

The Prisoners who Never Came Back, brings attention to the tragedy of Indian soldiers, who lost relevance and continue to languish in jails beyond the reach of their families and government. The Prisoners Who Never Came Back. Chander Suta Dogra. Harpercollins. 2019. Rs 475. Pages 374. On 16 December 2020, Prime Minister Narendra Modi lit Swarnim Vijay Mashaal from the eternal flame of the National War Memorial in New Delhi to mark the beginning of a year-long celebration of the 50th anniversary of India’s military victory over Pakistan in 1971. He went on to tweet, “Vijay Diwas is a fitting reminder of the valour and sacrifice of all those who fought courageously in the 1971 war. Tributes to them.” Every year, India celebrates 16 December as ‘Vijay Diwas’ to commemorate this military victory.........Read more

How Food Determines Your Mood | Outlook Poshan

A healthy gut is significant for happiness. It is a proven fact that our digestive system not only helps in digesting food but also guides our emotions and is very closely linked with our mood. The link between our digestive system and our brain is known as the Gut-Brain Axis. This communication works both ways, which means that the gut and the brain are constantly talking and influencing each other. It is observed that the way our emotions affect the functioning of our digestive system, gut health also influences our mood and thinking. Thus it becomes important to take care of your gut health. So, to feel good inside and out, ensure that the food you put in your system is the right one. The major hormone which helps to stabilize and uplift your mood is known as ‘Serotonin’. Also known as the happiness hormone, increase in Serotonin will elevate your mood, while lack of it can cause sadness and low feeling.........Read more

A Diet To Prevent, Cure Fatty Liver

The risk of obesity is much complex than it seems as it lead to other diseases. There are approximately 650 million people who comes in obese category and the counting seems to increase massively due to the erratic lifestyle and unhealthy dietary habits. The co-morbidities associated with obesity are also on a rise. One of them is fatty liver disease – which could be alcohol-induced or non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Almost 1/3rd of the population is suffering from Fatty liver ailment, which is one of the leading contributors in liver failure. Non-alcoholic fatty liver disease is most commonly diagnosed in those who are obese or sedentary and those who are on highly processed food diet. An unhealthy liver adds on to other co-morbidities such as diabetes/ indigestion / hormonal imbalance etc. While, a healthy body helps to remove toxins and produces bile, the digestive protein, which helps in building up immunity. ........Read more

How India’s historians have reflected on the country’s history, culture and heritage

One of the greatest issues for historians has been the geographical understanding of India, as well as its cultural and civilisational edifice. While a sense of unity, spatially, culturally or in religious terms, may have contributed to the idea of India as it exists today, modern Indian ethos rests on more than a unified historical consciousness.........Read more

IPO proceeds in India surged 61% in 2020: EY report

The increase in IPO proceeds came despite the fact that the number of IPOs in 2020 was just 43, down 33% from 2019. Q4 2020' showed that the increase in IPO proceeds came despite the fact that the number of IPOs in 2020 was just 43, down 33% from 2019. It said that the fourth quarter of 2020 saw a strong rebound in IPO activity and market sentiment remains positive. "Real estate, hospitality and construction, diversified industrial products were the most active sectors (in terms of the number of IPOs) with three IPOs launched in each sector (including main and SME markets)," it said. In terms of the issue size, the IPO by Gland Pharma Ltd from the life sciences sector was the largest in Q4 2020 with proceeds of $869 million.........Read more

Ayodhya Mosque May Be Named After 1857 Revolt Warrior Maulvi Ahmadullah Shah

The mosque is set to be built on the Ayodhya land after the Supreme Court verdict int he Babri Masjid case. After the Trust was formed, there have been discussions on whether the mosque should be named after Mughal emperor Babar or some other name be given. The Babri mosque was named after Babar. To make the Ayodhya mosque project a symbol of communal brotherhood and patriotism, the Trust has decided to dedicate the project to Shah, who represented these values and was also a true follower of Islam, according to Trust sources. Hussain said, "The Trust is thinking very seriously over the proposal of dedicating our Ayodhya Mosque project to the great freedom fighter Maulvi Ahmadullah Shah. We have got suggestions regarding the same from different platforms. It is a good suggestion. We will officially announce it after deliberations".........Read more

Why the centuries-old martial art Kalaripayattu is still drawing followers

The Kerala government recently introduced a Kalaripayattu academy in Thiruvananthapuram. It’s not uncommon for age-old traditions and practices to fade away over the years. But in some cases, the passage of time allows their popularity to grow. Kalaripayattu, a centuries-old form of martial arts practiced in Kerala, is one such example. Across the state, small and large institutions host a number of students who continue to learn Kalari. Kalaripayattu is believed to be one of the oldest surviving martial arts, and is over 3000 years old, and Lord Parashurama is said to be its creator. Realising the popularity of the form, the Kerala government has now introduced a Kalaripayattu academy in Thiruvananthapuram. Padmashri Meenakshiamma, who has been honoured for her knowledge of Kalaripayattu and has received widespread praise, will also be taking classes at the academy.........Read more

This Indian-origin Lawyer has Dedicated His Life to the Cause of Amazon Forests

An Indian-origin lawyer who went to Brazil in 1989 after getting a scholarship and also has a doctorate degree and completed three post-doctoral studies has dedicated his life to cause of Amazon forests. The man, Shaji Thomas, originally from Kerala has been a major environmental activist and even lived in a houseboat on the Amazon river. Speaking to news agency IANS about his life in Brazil, Thomas said, “I came to Sao Paulo in the end of 1989 under an overseas training program. When I came here, the country was reeling under high inflation (more than 5,000 per cent per year). Though the country is extraordinarily rich, it has the high rate of corruption too. The right-wing government which was in power for many years favoured the rich class. Brazil is three times bigger than India and owns almost two-third of the Amazon rainforest. The gap between the rich and the poor is very evident in Brazil.” ........Read more

Voter-ID Cards to go Digital From Tomorrow | Know How to Download it

Voter identity cards are all set to go digital as the Election Commission will launch the e-EPIC (Electronic Electoral Photo Identity Card) initiative tomorrow, National Voters Day.  If reports are to be believed, the digital EPIC service will become available to voters across the country before assembly elections in five states– Assam, Kerala, Puducherry, Tamil Nadu, and West Bengal. The poll panel will launch the e-EPIC initiative in two phases. In the first phase (January 25-31), new voters who have applied for the voter-ID card and registered their mobile numbers in Form-6 will be able to download the e-EPIC by simply authenticating their mobile number. The mobile numbers should be unique and not be previously registered in the ECI’s electoral rolls. In the second phase that will begin from February 1, general voters can apply for e-EPIC. “All those who have given their mobile numbers (linked one) they can also download their e-EPIC,” a poll panel officer said.........Read more

92 countries post request for Made-in-India vaccines

Ninety-two countries have approached India for Covid-19 vaccines, bolstering New Delhis credentials as the vaccine hub of the world. Highly placed sources said that scores of countries are approaching India, as the word spreads that Indian vaccines are showing negligible side-effects, since the immunization drive in the country began on Saturday. India is sending its domestically developed vaccines to several neighbouring countries including Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar.........Read more

India-China soldiers clash at Naku La in Sikkim: All you need to know

Around 20 Chinese soldiers were reportedly injured in a clash that ensued last week after the Indian troops stopped a PLA patrol team from entering the Indian territory at Naku La in Sikkim. Few Indian Army soldiers were also injured in the clash, sources told India Today on Monday. ust before India and China held the ninth round of military talks with detailed . The ninth round, which was held at Moldo border point, concluded at 2.30 am Monday. India and Chinese armies clashed in Nathu La after the Indian Army thwarted PLA’s fresh intrusion attempt in Sikkim. Soldiers on both sides injured following a physical brawl after Indian troops stopped a PLA patrol party attempting to cross into Indian territory. As per reports, the clash took place at Naku La in Sikkim on January 20.........Read more

Budget 2021: Govt May Announce National Bank For Ease of Financing Big Infra Projects

Finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman may announce a national bank in the upcoming Budget 2021 on February 1 for easy access to low cost fund for big infrastructure project, reports CNBC. Sources have said that government may make it mandatory for Provided Fund, Pension and Insurance Funds to put a certain amount to this bank. The proposed bank may have an authorised capital of Rs 1 lakh crore and Rs 20,000 crore as initial paid up capital, the report said.........Read more

Mukesh Ambani made Rs 90Cr/hr, Lakhs Lost Jobs: Oxfam

The Covid pandemic has led to a rise in inequality, and it would take an unskilled worker 10,000 years to make what Ambani made in an hour during the pandemic and three years to make what Mukesh Ambani made in a second. As per the Oxfam Inequality Report called this year as "The Inequality Virus Report" because of the pandemic said the pandemic has also widened the existing social, economic and gender-based inequalities. "The rich have been able to escape the pandemic's worst impact, and white-collar workers have easily isolated themselves and have been working from home. However, most of India has faced loss of livelihoods," it said. During pandemic, on the day when Indian billionaire, Mukesh Ambani, rose to become the fourth richest man in the world, a farmer, Rajesh Rajak, and his three daughters died by suicide as a result of his job loss.........Read more

Sexual assault under POCSO needs skin to skin contact: Bombay HC

IN a controversial order that could have implications on a range of cases, the Nagpur bench of Bombay High Court acquitted a man of sexual assault on the grounds that pressing the breasts of a child over her clothes without direct “skin to skin” physical contact does not constitute “sexual assault” under the Protection of Children from Sexual Offences (POCSO) Act. The verdict, delivered by Justice Pushpa V Ganediwala on January 19, set aside the ruling of a lower court under Section 8 of POCSO applicable to “sexual assault” on children, against convict Satish Bandu Ragde. Saying that Section 8 of POCSO provides for stringent punishment of five years’ of rigorous imprisonment (RI), the High Court observed that “stricter proof and serious allegations are required”. ........Read more

Covid deepened inequalities: wealth, education, gender

A new report by Oxfam has found that the Covid pandemic deeply exacerbated existing inequalities in India and around the world. The report, titled ‘The Inequality Virus’, has found that as the pandemic stalled the economy, forcing millions of poor Indians out of jobs, the richest billionaires in India increased their wealth by 35 per cent. “The wealth of Indian billionaires increased by 35 per cent during the lockdown and by 90 per cent since 2009 to $422.9 billion ranking India sixth in the world after US, China, Germany, Russia and France,” states the report. According to Oxfam’s calculations, since March, as the government announced possibly the strictest lockdown anywhere in the world, India’s top 100 billionaires saw their fortunes increase by Rs 12.97 trillion — enough money to give every one of the 138 million poorest Indians a cheque for Rs 94,045 each. In stark contrast, 170,000 people lost their jobs every hour in the month of April 2020, the report points out.........Read more

Apple Had To Clarify Something Already Common Knowledge: Keep Magnets Away From Medical Devices

It is a well-known fact that certain medical equipment and magnets don’t exactly get along very well. That should neither be a surprise to anyone, nor make someone look on with an incredulous expression. Yet, Apple has had to suggest that any user who has pacemakers, defibrillators or any implants, must not keep any MagSafe accessories and the iPhone 12 phones at least six inches away when in use, and a foot away when the iPhone 12 is charging using a MagSafe charger. This comes after a research titled Life Saving Therapy Inhibition by Phones Containing Magnets was published and said, “We hereby bring an important public health issue concerning the newer generation iPhone 12 which can potentially inhibit lifesaving therapy in a patient particularly while carrying the phone in upper pockets.”........Read more

TCS Becomes World's Most Valued IT Company, Surpassing Accenture

Tata Consultancy Services Indian software services major (TCS) on Monday again became the most valued company in its sector globally, surpassing  . TCS's market capitalisation crossed $169.9 billion inches ahead of rival Accenture. TCS had also zoomed past Accenture to become the most valuable IT services company in the world in October last year. Back in 2018, IBM was at the top of the market with 300% more revenue than TCS, followed by Accenture in second place. However, in April that year, TCS touched the $100 billion valuation mark and overtook Accenture’s market cap.........Read more

No extra attempt for UPSC aspirants who couldn't appear due to Covid-19

The Centre told Supreme Court on Friday that no extra attempt would be given to UPSC aspirants who were unable to appear in the October 2020 exam due to the Covid-19 situation. This was during the hearing of a petition filed by students, asking for an extra UPSC exam attempt in view of the pandemic. SC has asked Centre to file an affidavit regarding the decision and posted the matter for further hearing on January 25. The UPSC Prelims 2020 for Civil Services Preliminary and Indian Forest Services Preliminary Examination 2020 were held on October 4. The Union Public Service Commission or UPSC Prelims examination 2020 results were declared on October 24. The UPSC exams were held adhering to the Covid-19 safety guidelines and around 10.58 lakh candidates had registered for the same.........Read more

Twitter will re-open verifications from Jan 22: How is the blue tick awarded?

‘Authentic, notable and active’; these will be the three defining terms for a Twitter account to get the coveted blue badge of verification when the process, on pause since November 2017, will reopen January 22, 2021. But who gets verified, and who doesn’t? We explain below. Twitter stopped verifications on November 16, 2017, stating that the blue badge had caused a perception problem for them. The verification mark was seen as an endorsement of some individuals by Twitter, which was not necessarily the case. The company wrote back then, “This perception became worse when we opened up verification for public submissions and verified people who we in no way endorse.” The company was also planning to review some of the accounts which had gotten verified earlier. Twitter will have a new self-serve application process, available on the web and in-app. Users will be able to apply themselves to get verified. They will have to choose a category for their verification status. They will have to share some links and other supporting materials to boost their cause in order to get the tick. Twitter will use “both automated and human review” to handle these applications for verifications. It also said it will give users “the option to share demographic information after completing the new verification application so that we can better measure and improve the equity of our verification process.”........Read more

Data Of Over 3 Lakh Users Leaked From Indian Crypto Exchange BuyUCoin

The leaked data contains information for 3.25 lakh users, which is the exact number of users that BuyUCoin claims to have The leaked data is contained in a MongoDB dump, which is a popular database for modern apps The leaked data contains sensitive information such as users’ bank account numbers, IFSC codes, and the type of bank accounts While names, phone numbers and email addresses are mostly used for large-scale phishing campaigns, the fact that certain bank details of users have also been leaked from BuyUCoin is of grave concern. Responding to Inc42‘s queries, BuyUCoin claimed no data breach had taken place. “In the mid of 2020, while conducting a routine testing exercise with dummy data, we faced a ‘Low Impact Security Incident’ in which non-sensitive, dummy data of only 200 entries was impacted. We would like to clarify that not even a single customer was affected during the incident,” read the company statement.........Read more

Beeper Is a New App That Keeps All Your Messaging Apps in One Place: Here's How It Works

Beeper is a new platform that brings all your messaging apps together in one place. Created by the founder of Pebble smartwatches, Eric Migicovsky, Beeper is an effort to brings all your messaging apps into a single place. The app acts as a central hun for 15 major messaging apps or services and works on a monthly payment basis, where users need to pay $10 (Rs 730 by direct conversion) per month in order to keep all their messaging apps in one place. Perhaps the most interesting thing that Beeper may be able to do is run iMessage on . While announcing the new app, founder Eric Migicovsky said that Beeper allows iMessage to work even on Android, , and Linux, but it involves using "some trickery." Beeper was previously known as NovaChat it works on all platforms including Windows, Mac, Linux, , and Android. Messages are connected to the app using Matrix, which is an open-source federated messaging protocol and acts as a bridge for each messaging client. The 15 major messaging apps that Beeper includes currently are , , , Slack, Messenger, SMS, Discord, Skype, IRC, Twitter DMs, Apple iMessage, and Google Hangouts. Each of these apps feed their messages into a single location and users can respond to messages on all these apps from within Beeper itself.........Read more

Forget Retinal Scans And Fingerprints, Brainprints Could Be The Biometrics Of The Future

In a new study published in Neurocomputing, researchers from Binghamton University in New York demonstrated the viability of brain scans as a means of establishing an individual’s identity. It takes advantage of the variations an individual’s brain responds to the mention of specific acronyms, allowing it to be used for distinguishing one person from another. Called Brainprint, the study observed the brain signals from 45 volunteers, who were read a list of 75 different acronyms. They focused, specifically, on the area of the brain associated with reading and recognizing words, recording the reactions from each volunteer for each individual acronym. Each of the results were fed to a computer system, which was able to identify the volunteers with a 94 percent accuracy – a number the researchers believe can be greatly improved with more work on the system. According to the researchers, the proposed security solution offers a distinct advantage over biometrics in that it can be easily reset. When a fingerprint or a retinal scan are compromised, for instance, a user can’t exactly grow new fingers or new eyes, so it is compromised forever. With brain scans, they can simply do another scan, reading a different set of acronyms, to reset a person’s biometric record. You can learn more about Brainprint from the link below.........Read more

Bitcoin sell-off wipes out $100 billion from crypto market in just two days

The world’s number-one cryptocurrency has dropped almost 18 percent over the past week. Bitcoin has seen a wild rally in recent weeks, briefly hitting $41,940 earlier this month before its recent sharp drop. The second-biggest cryptocurrency by market value, ether, was also down around 10 percent over the past 48 hours. It was trading at $1,238.49, after hitting an all-time high of $1,439 on Tuesday. The plunge in major digital assets evoked an enormous drop in the market value of all cryptocurrencies from about $1.06 trillion to under $920 billion. Despite the latest drop, bitcoin has still been up over 150 percent in the past three months. Experts tied its rally to a number of factors, including growing interest from large institutional investors. Bitcoin’s recent price surge was also boosted by massive investor outflow from gold, which is commonly the preferred inflation hedge for traders.........Read more

How academic groupthink is trying to silence a Harvard astrophysicist who claims an alien spacecraft visited our solar system

In October 2017, an unusually thin, elongated object was detected by astronomers. It was like nothing seen before and even accelerated as it left our solar system. It was named 'Oumuamua, and its many abnormalities, such as its constantly fluctuating brightness, caused problems for scientists. Indeed, because it did not fit the normal conventions of a space object, one academic admitted to Professor Avi Loeb that they “wished it had never existed”. But the chair of Harvard University’s astronomy department was excited about the strangeness of 'Oumuamua, inspired by its anomalies and intrigued by the fact it was the first interstellar object that had been detected passing through our solar system. After , he announced “the high likelihood that 'Oumuamua was of artificial origin”. This caused a sensation in the scientific community, because established thought abhors being “taken out of its comfort zone”, according to Professor Loeb. And now he’s set to antagonize that community further, with the publication of his book on the 'Oumuamua phenomenon, at the end of January. However, he has a simple response to those who deny potential new breakthroughs for fear of upending established conventions. “Reality is the one thing that never goes away, even if you ignore it,” he says.........Read more

South Africa's coronavirus variant poses 're-infection risk': study

Raising questions over the possibility of reinfection by the coronavirus strain which was detected in South Africa, researchers have come up with a study report. The authors of the study stated that this variant of the Covid-19 virus has the ability to escape neutralisation by antibodies from recovered COVID-19 patients. ........Read more

How an augmented reality app transformed London into an immersive art gallery

If you ever hopped on the Pokémon GO craze, you’ll have an inkling of how digital technology is increasingly capable of adding rich new slices to everyday life. The public exhibition ‘Unreal City’, which ran from 8 December 2020 to 5 January 2021 on the River Thames in London – and is, until 9 February 2021, available for at-home viewing – similarly superimposed digital layers on to reality, but with an aim to transform the city into an immersive augmented reality (AR) art gallery. An initiative from the AR app Acute Art and Dazed Media, the exhibition featured 36 digital sculptures from artists around the globe, and was arranged as a riverside walking tour at a time when indoor museums had become mostly inaccessible due to COVID-19. Featuring images of some of the sculptures and words from artists including Olafur Eliasson, Tomás Saraceno, Cao Fei and KAWS, this trailer for the ‘Unreal City’ exhibition is an exciting glimpse into the potential for AR as it continues to transform cities in strange and surprising ways. ........Read more

‘Natural’ healing is metaphysically incoherent but valuable – Alan Jay Levinovitz | Aeon Essays

To the uninitiated, the variety and juxtapositions are surely jarring: Indian meditation alongside a ‘body charger’, fresh juice to cleanse your insides, followed by a bleach bath to cleanse your outside. And then there’s her recurring insistence on the ‘naturalness’ of these interventions throughout her discussion of the protocol. Raw garlic seems natural enough, and so do breathing exercises, but a PEMF machine? Vitamins and minerals that have been processed and refined into powders, pills and drips? Whatever Viracid is? There are many possible definitions of ‘natural’, but it’s difficult to imagine one capacious enough to accommodate the entirety of this list. ........Read more

More young urban Indian men appear to be studying longer, not looking for jobs: New research

By the end of this decade, India will boast about having the largest working-age population in the world. Regional variation in terms of development, economic structure, education and culture are significant in this diverse nation. Young adults are the driving force that will shape India’s future. And decent job opportunities for them will form India’s identity and prosperity. The future of India in the aftermath of the Covid pandemic crucially depends on how regional job markets fare, how many people participate in economic activity and what kind of jobs are on offer. This is especially important for young adults who are entering the employment market for their first job. In the initial years of their working life, they keep looking for better opportunities while also settling into their family lives. The past experience provides some helpful insights. This article focuses on young men in urban India in the age group of 20 to 29 years. Using data for from the 61st round of NSS’ Employment-Unemployment Survey and Periodic Labour Force Survey, we divide the men in this age group into those who are not looking for work (out of labour force), those employed in the formal sector (a job with a formal contract and social security), those employed in the informal sector, and those who are yet to find a job (unemployed). The state-level data reflect only people who are currently residing there and not those who have migrated to other states.........Read more

India’s new tourism model is small local rentals, homestays. 2021 budget needs to catch up

The coronavirus pandemic has dealt one of the worst blows to the hospitality and tourism industry, but the seeds of a revival have started appearing – primarily driven by a rush among young professionals opting for long and short stays in hotels, resorts and homestays that are clean and affordable. With the sector’s rich potential to create employment when lakhs have lost their jobs, the government needs to support this transformation to bring about a revival in the industry. Over 90 per cent of India’s hotel rooms currently fall in the economy, budget, and mid-market segments and serve mostly domestic travellers, according to the Hotel Association of India. However, around 40 per cent of all hotels face currently imminent closure amid plunging room rates that have choked their capacity to repay debts. The Narendra Modi government needs to provide tax and loan relief in the upcoming Budget so that the tourism and hospitality industry can get back up on its feet. The government can incentivise investments in hotel and tourism infrastructure, reduce procedural hassles such as the requirement of Tax Deduction Account Number for deductions and eligibility of food production, and air catering for reduced corporate tax as well as allow cash receipts from foreign tourists for transactions above Rs 2 lakh.........Read more

Former IPS officer's tell-all memoir unveils 'real-life Singham' behind the khaki uniform

 In a new tell-all memoir, former IPS officer and Tamil Nadu BJP vice-president K. Annamalai takes readers to the core of the ‘khaki’ police uniform and talks about the people who wear it for the service of the nation, with pride and dignity. Revelations of a Real-Life Singham’, published by Bloomsbury, is due to be released on 25 January on ‘SoftCover’ — ThePrint’s e-venue to launch select non-fiction books. In a decade-long career as an IPS officer in Karnataka, Annamalai earned the respect of the people with his humanistic action and his leadership style that empowered subordinates. His memoir talks about the “real heroes” he encountered, throughout the course of his career. Annamalai, who founded ‘We The Leaders’, a Tamil Nadu-based grassroots change-focused initiative, also prescribes changes needed in politics, policing and in daily governance mechanisms in his book. It focuses on some core questions that plague politics — are politicians bad? Is politics a place where good people fear to tread? But foremost, Annamalai’s memoir focuses on the common man’s goodness and the masses’ role in keeping democracy in a nation intact.........Read more

Minus 27.1 in Drass, Srinagar freezes at minus 7

Winter plummetted further across the Kashmir Valley and Ladakh on Thursday as the weather office forecast another spell of snow and rain during the next three days. Minimum temperatures across the valley and Ladakh dropped further on Thursday due to clear night sky. Another spell of moderate snow in Kashmir hills and plains and higher reaches of Jammu and rain in the plains of Jammu is expected starting Friday. "Maximum activity is likely on 23rd and 24th of January," an official of the weather office said. ........Read more

The surprising reason eating less meat is linked to a longer life: A smelly toxic gas

it forces the tissues to make hydrogen sulfide (H2S), a gas that's poisonous if inhaled and smells like rotten eggs, but promotes health inside the body. As a physiology researcher, I have long been interested in the strange role of H2S in the body. This is not a gas anyone wants around. It stinks, is a component of flatulence, and its toxicity has been . And yet, the body naturally produces small amounts of it as a signaling molecule to act as a chemical messenger. Now, we are starting to understand the link between diet and H2S production. Diet restrictions that increase longevity Less can be more when it comes to food. When scientists have put organisms on carefully balanced but restricted diets, these organisms have substantially increased healthy lifespans. This holds true for . In mice, such diets , strengthen the immune system and improve cognitive function. But because aging and longevity are complex processes, it has been difficult for researchers to pin down the mechanisms at work. Recent studies have shed new light, and it is apparent that H2S plays a crucial role.........Read more

How My Love For Farming Is Keeping Me Fit at 93

Chidambaram Nair, a 93-year-old native of Kozhikode in Kerala, is a retired school teacher who has been organic farming since he was a child. He credits his health to the practice, and consumes only the produce he grows himself. ven at the age of 93, Chidambaram Nair is firmly planted on his feet. The nonagenarian has been practicing agriculture since his childhood, and credits his health and fitness to it. “Agriculture is the foundation of everything in this world,” he tells The Better India, adding, “The day we forget this fact, our failures begin.” Nair, a native of Kerala’s Kozhikode, says the scent of the soil is his motivation. Nair’s love for the profession stems from the small vegetable garden he had at home as a child. His gardening hobby eventually transformed into full-fledged cultivation of a barren land that his parents owned. Then there was no looking back. “I worked as a primary school teacher in a school nearby for almost 27 years. During that time, I would cultivate my land before heading to school, till about 9 in the morning. After school, children would rush to get home, and I would rush to get back to my farm,” he recalls.........Read more

JEE Main 2021: 75% Eligibility Criteria Waived off

Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal, Education Minister of India tweeted about the 75% waive off on 19 January. Ministry of Education has decided to waive off the eligibility criteria of obtaining 75 percent marks in Class 12 to appear for the Joint Entrance Exam (JEE) Main 2021. This move has come as a great relief for students appearing for the exam this year. Dr Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank, Education Minister of India tweeted about this on 19 January. Considering the decision taken for IIT JEE(Advanced) and in line with the decision taken for the last academic year, it has been decided to waive off the 75% marks (in class 12 exam) eligibility criteria under Joint Entrance Examination (Main) for the next academic year 2021-2022........Read more

SAT 2021: What Are The Big Changes? Who Is Eligible to Take It?

Here’s all you need to know about the big changes in taking SATs from 2021. The coronavirus pandemic has brought in significant changes to the The Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT). The New York-based College Board, which conducts the test, said that the changes have been made to reduce demands on “beleaguered students,” who are preparing for/taking the the test in the shadow of the pandemic. However, these changes will not only be applicable for 2021, but henceforth. Here’s all you need to know about the changes in the tests. The Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) is an exam for undergraduate admissions in the United States. Students are admitted to various universities based on these tests. Are these tests applicable to universities in India? Yes. SATs are recognised in around 40 universities across India – including private and deemed ones. Private Universities like Manipal, Symbiosis, OP Jindal, Vellore Institute of Technology are some of those that accept SATs. However, these tests are popular among Indians who want to pursue undergraduate programmes in American universities. What changes will be made in SAT? The College Board, in a press statement, said, “The expanded reach of Advanced Placement Programme (AP) and it's widespread availability means the subject tests are no longer neccessary for students to show what they know."........Read more

The Modi government needs to fix India’s job crisis to fix the economy

These are the core obsessions that drive our newsroom—defining topics of seismic importance to the global economy. These are some of our most ambitious editorial projects. Enjoy! Our emails are made to shine in your inbox, with something fresh every morning, afternoon, and weekend. Writer, banking and economy unemployment. India’s unemployment rate climbed to a according to Mumbai-based think-tank Centre for Monitoring Indian Economy (CMIE). “The influx of people looking for work swelled. But, labour markets were not ready for this six-million surge in labour. It thus left them largely unemployed,” the CMIE report said. Official data on unemployment has not yet been released. While moves like tax cuts and direct incentives to industries could provide some boost to the dwindling Indian economy, job creation could help tackle a wider issue. For example, with money in people’s hands, spending would improve and that could go a long way in bringing the economy back on track. “India can’t continue to have jobless growth. Addressing this issue is extremely important for the overall growth of the economy,” said M Govinda Rao, chief economic advisor at Brickwork Ratings.........Read more

Waiting for Next Outbreak? Fish Farms Across India Found Highly Contaminated and Full of Waste

The rising scare of bird flu has acted as a boon for fish farmers in several states in India with wary consumers turning to seafood and meat alternatives to replace chicken and eggs from their diet. But is the fish you are eating safe? An investigative study conducted across 241 fish farms across 10 Indians states has found evidence of high degrees of lead and cadmium in fish farms and other evidence of severe violations in public health and food safety standards as well as environmental animal welfare. Tamil Nadu was found to have the worst quality of water quality in fish farms while Andhra Pradesh and West Bengal as well as Pondicherry farms exhibited high-level public health hazards. The farms in Tamil Nadu, Bihar and Orissa were found to be the most harmful to the environment. Fish farms across states in India were found to have high levels of lead and cadmium contamination. Both these components have the capacity to bond with cells upon entering the human body and cause long-term damage. Fish raised in such conditions may themselves contain traces of the substances and may end up on plates of unsuspecting consumers, causing immense damage to some such as young children and pregnant women. Case in point is the farmed salmon in Norway which was initially criticised (and even banned by Russia in 2006) for containing high degrees of toxic compounds. Norway in return lobbied internationally and ultimately received approval to alter the permissible levels of cadmium and lead is salmon.........Read more

Covid Diplomacy: Why India's Supply of Vaccines to Nepal, Bangladesh is Strategically Relevant

India’s soft diplomacy has been on display during the covid=19 pandemic — from supplying medicines like hydroxychloroquine, paracetamol and medical equipment to other countries, to New Delhi kick-starting the supply of Indian-manufactured coronavirus vaccines on Wednesday to neighbouring countries as a goodwill gesture. A chunk of the vaccines being dispatched to the neighbouring countries is on a grant basis. A consignment packed off from the Serum Institute of India (SII) in Pune, with 150,000 doses, on Wednesday. As far as is concerned, trade of essential supplies continued to the neighbour despite Covid-19 lockdowns in 2020. Meanwhile, 100,000 doses are being dispatched Maldives as well. Subsequently, the government of Maldives will strike a commercial deal with SII for 300,000 vaccines. The total population of Maldives is 500,000, so the Indian-manufactured vaccines will take care of a sizeable population there. The commitment to Maldives, a crucial Indian Ocean archipelago nation, in the context of the Chinese aggression in the region, was made by the Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla during his visit to Male in November 2020. He had announced that as a close partner and friend, India would accord priority to Maldives for providing vaccines, whenever they were ready.........Read more

5 Terrifying True Crime Documentaries That Might Even Break Your Heart

We all love a true crime story. Be it in a form of a highly dramatised show like Crime Patrol the n number of podcasts we listen to while doing our daily activities or even classic shows like Unsolved Mysteries and Forensic Files. However, even when true crime makes a very entertaining genre, the fact that it involves very real people, is heartbreaking. This week, we bring to you five horrifying crime documentaries that will also break your heart. It is never easy to stomach a crime that took the life of a small child. However, the case of JonBenet Ramsey, the child pageant queen who was murdered at the age of 6 soon became a national enigma. That's the point the documentary wants to convey. The fact the little girl fades into the background and scandalous theories become the focus of the case, is another heartbreaking element of the documentary. However, it is the sad truth of this case. From DNA evidence that might not even be so, to theories of parents covering up the murder committed by their son, this documentary addressed everything under the sun in this case. The Family Next Door........Read more

Leaving Camera On During Video Calls, Streaming Videos in HD Increases Your Carbon Footprint, Study Finds

A study from a US-based University has claimed that leaving a computer's camera on during video calls can increase carbon emissions. According to researchers at the Purdue University, an hour of videoconferencing or streaming can emit 100 to 150 grams of carbon dioxide. It also uses up to 12 litres of water and an area of land around the size of an iPad Mini. The study also claims that streaming videos in standard definition instead of high definition may result in an 86 percent reduction of your carbon footprint. The study is the first of its kind and investigates how internet infrastructure affects water and land use, not just carbon emissions. The study estimates the carbon, water, and land associated with each gigabyte of data used across platforms like YouTube, Zoom, Facebook, Twitter, online gaming, and surfing the web. The researchers came to a conclusion that indicated more video = bigger carbon footprint. "Banking systems tell you the positive environmental impact of going paperless, but no one tells you the benefit of turning off your camera or reducing your streaming quality," said Kaveh Madani, a researcher who led the study at Purdue University. Madani said that tech platforms are increasing your carbon footprint without your consent.........Read more

Elon Musk's SpaceX Will Make Its Own Laws on Mars, Not Follow Universal Ones

In space, where nobody can hear you scream - earthly laws don't apply. Or so believes Elon Musk. The CEO of Tesla and SpaceX, the tech mogul who has mentioned 'colonizing Mars' several times, now wants to make his own laws on the red planet. According a in The Independent, SpaceX will not be recognising any international law on Mars and will instead follow a set of “self-governing principles” that will be laid down during the Martian settlement. Elon Musk appears to have very subtly slipped in a clause into the terms of agreement of Starlink satellite broadband services that SpaceX will make its own set of rules on Mars. “For services provided on Mars, or in transit to Mars via Starship, or other colonisation spacecraft, the parties recognise Mars as a free planet and that no Earth-based government has authority or sovereignty over Martian activities. Accordingly, disputes will be settled through self-governing principles, established in good faith, at the time of Martian settlement.” The Independent report also added that this future colony created by SpaceX would likely use constellations of Starlink satellites orbiting the planet to provide internet connection. Elon Musk's SpaceX has already launched more than 800 satellites with the aim of offering broadband internet globally.........Read more

Friendly-Neighbour India To Export Vaccines To Six Nations

India will begin supplying vaccines to selected countries fromWednesday.Keeping in mind Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s neighbourhood-first policy, the first recipients will be countries in the region. The Prime Minister had earlier promised to help “humanity fight the Covid-19 pandemic”. The first batch of vaccines will be sent out under grant assistance to Bhutan, Bangladesh, Nepal, Maldives, Myanmar, and Seychelles, the MEA said in a statement released this evening. Delhi will also supply Sri Lanka, Afghanistan and Mauritius, once the mandatory clearance formalities are completed by the regulatory bodies of the three countries. A meeting of health and foreign ministry officials was held onMondayto work out the details. Several countries had lined up for the vaccine. However, the statement did not say the quantity that will be sent out to other countries. nor is there any mention of which vaccines will be given.Will, theOxford AstraZeneca vaccines being produced in Pune by the Serum Institute of India, or the homegrown Covaxin manufactured by the Hyderabad-based Bharat Biotech be sent out? There is no clarity on this. Most countries would prefer the Oxford AstraZeneca, considering there is not enough data on the Bharat Biotech vaccine.........Read more

Revealed: World’s 50 most Instagrammable places

The pandemic year made sure that travelling around the world came to a halt. And even with various vaccination drives, people are still considering many safety aspects before planning a trip anywhere. But that has not stopped them from dreaming about future trips. Among other things, documenting travels in the form of pictures — which are then shared on social media — is customary. As such, Big Seven Travel has compiled a list of the world’s 50 most Instagrammable destinations for 2021. Singapore, Madrid ( ), Berlin (Germany), Toronto (Canada), Hong Kong, Santorini (Greece), Taiwan, Milan (Italy), among others.........Read more

Brisbane Test: Bruised but heroic India stun Australia to win series, retain Border-Gavaskar Trophy

36-all out certainly seems a distant memory now. We may not even remember that down the line. India were written off after that horror session in Adelaide. But despite being battered and bruised by injury concerns, the Asian giants have pulled off a spectacular result, retaining the Border-Gavaskar Trophy by winning the series 2-1. In the absence of Virat Kohli and their first-choice bowling attack, India have pulled off what will be remembered as one of their greatest, if not the greatest result in Test cricket history. India won their first-ever Test series on Australian soil in 2018-19 under Kohli and the second win didn't take too long. With the win, India also continued their unbeaten run in Australia for 6 years. Their last series defeat Down Under came in 2014-15 -- a record that other sides will be envious of. Wow. WOW.For the first time in more than three decades, Australia are beaten at the Gabba.Which means, against ALL odds, India win the series 2-1! Unbelievable scenes Indian fans had kept their eyes on the weather forecast after Australia set a target of 328 with the previous highest successful chase at the Gabba having been 236. It was Austrlaia's fortress but India breached it and in some style. The rain gods showed mercy and India made the most of it by scripting history and handing Australia their first defeat in Brisbane since 1988/89.........Read more

DNA as a flash drive? When scientists stored the message 'hello world' inside living cells

Scientists at Columbia University have used a gene editing tool called CRISPR to encode and store data inside living bacterial cells. There has been growing interest in using DNA as a storage medium for data. Genetic material effectively encodes data that allows life forms to function using the four DNA bases — adenine (A), cytosine (C), thymine (T) and guanine (G). The scientists used genetic sequencing to tweak these codes to encode information. The DNA sequence can then be chemically synthesised in a laboratory, and even stored within everyday objects. The team was also able to arrange DNA sequences to encode a text message that said “hello world!” inside E. coli cells. They were able to decode the message by extracting and sequencing the bacterial DNA. The reason researchers are trying to store information in living cells is because they could be a more stable medium for long-term storage in harsh conditions. While DNA kept outside cells can get degraded, bacteria have the ability to adapt to changing surroundings and can survive under harsh conditions. There is still a long way to go before we start seeing real life organic storage systems that can replace our digital devices, because living cells have a major drawback — the DNA codes can change and introduce minor errors when cells replicate.........Read more

Telangana postpones Covaxin roll-out

A quickly planned rollout of Covaxin, a Covid-19 vaccine manufactured by the city-based Bharat Biotech, was on Monday equally quickly pulled back without any explanation by the State health department authorities. Covaxin was to become a matter of pride for the state and government, being a ‘Made in Telangana’ vaccine. The launch of the Covid-19 vaccination on January 16 in Telangana began with people getting jabs of Covishield vaccine, manufactured by the Pune-based Serum Institute of India. Whereas Telangana, which received 20,000 doses of Covaxin, remained in cold storage at the State Vaccine Depot in Koti in the city. Late Monday morning, the health department issued an invite to the media saying there would be a “rollout” of a Covid-19 vaccine at the office of the Director of Public Health at Koti in the afternoon. The guests of honour were to be health minister Etala Rajendar and IT and industries minister K.T. Rama Rao. While the invite did not mention Covaxin being rolled out, it is self-evident this was the agenda as Covishield had already been rolled-out and was being used across the state for vaccination of healthcare personnel. However, within an hour, the health department announced the vaccine rollout was being “postponed” before going into total silence on the matter throughout the day.........Read more

World on the brink of ‘catastrophic moral failure’ as equitable distribution of Covid-19 vaccines at ‘serious risk’ – WHO chief

On Monday, World Health Organization chair Tedros Adhanom Ghebreyesus claimed that “the world is on the brink of a catastrophic moral failure” and the “prospects for equitable distribution of Covid-19 vaccines are at serious risk.” Ghebreyesus urged nations around the world to share doses of the Covid-19 vaccines more fairly, allowing people in poorer countries to receive the much-needed resource. “Not only does this me-first approach leave the world’s poorest and most vulnerable at risk, but it is also self-defeating,” Ghebreyesus told colleagues at the opening of the body’s annual Executive Board meeting. “Ultimately, these actions will only prolong the pandemic,” he added. Access to Covid vaccines is becoming an increasingly apparent challenge for some of the world’s poorest nations. In December, the director of the Africa Centres for Disease Control and Prevention John Nkengasong called on rich nations to share Covid-19 vaccine supplies, after a number of Western countries ordered quantities far in excess of their need. Nkengasong said African nations were struggling to secure access to vaccines, while other nations were hoarding supplies.........Read more

How a robot investigator searched 60 million files

Imagine having to search through all the documents, emails and messages of a huge multinational company. Yousr Khalil does not have to imagine. The forensic accountant was part of a team that had to ferret out proof of wrongdoing at the aerospace giant Airbus after it admitted paying bribes via middlemen. "Airbus was like a tower block with 900 apartments in it. We had to decide which ones we were going to go into and investigate," she says. Ms Khalil works for FRA, a forensic investigation business that supports legal cases across the globe. But this was a case apart and FRA's largest ever job. In order to qualify for a Deferred Prosecution Agreement (DPA), Airbus opened up its operations to intense scrutiny in 2016.........Read more

The new mosquito bringing disease to North America

During the night of 18 June 2019, on the US naval base in Guantanamo Bay, Cuba, an intruder was caught in a trap. Soldiers are accustomed to prisoners wishing to break out of Guantanamo. The base is best known as the place where the US indefinitely confines suspects in its “war on terror”, . For an intruder to make her way in was unusual. Even stranger, no one had ever seen anything like her on this side of the world. "Proboscis dark with median spattering of pale yellowish scales." Scales mainly dark and narrow on all veins." "Abdomen… with large median white spot.” The intruder was an Aedes vittatus mosquito. One of found across the globe, it is a new addition to the dozen or so species in North America that carry parasites or pathogens harmful to humans. Other mosquito species, like Aedes albopictus and Aedes aegypti, can transmit diseases like dengue, yellow fever and chikungunya. But unlike those others, Aedes vittatus is capable of carrying nearly all of the most dangerous mosquito-borne diseases, except for malaria. “Being in close contact with these mosquitoes is not good news. They’re breeding in your bird bath and they’re feeding off your kids,” says Yvonne-Marie Linton, research director of the Walter Reed Biosystematics Unit and curator of nearly 2 million specimens in the Smithsonian Institution’s US National Mosquito Collection.........Read more

Madurai Couple Prints QR Code on Wedding Invite for Guests to Transfer Gift Cash to Bank Account

No more searching for an envelope to keep the cash and presenting it to the bride or the bridegroom at a wedding. Now one can just transfer money to their bank accounts using Google Pay or PhonePe. In Madurai a family hit upon a simple idea of printing the QR code of Google Pay and PhonePe on the wedding invite so that those who had come for the wedding of their daughter and those who were not able to attend due to pandemic but would like to give their present were able to transfer money to the bank account of the bride. "About 30 persons had used the facility and gave cash as their wedding present," T.J.Jeyanthi, mother of the bride told IANS. Jeyanthi runs the Janani Beauty Parlour in Madurai. "This is the first time such a thing has been attempted in our family," she added. The wedding happened on Sunday and the invite has gone viral. "I have been getting many calls on this. Similarly, my brother and others in the family have been getting lots of calls since Monday morning," Jeyanthi remarked.........Read more

How to Start a Food Truck Business in India: Legal Permits, Locations & More

Opening a food truck means less investment and maintenance compared to a restaurant and covering as many locations as possible. Here’s a simple guide to get you started perating a food truck is much more than just making delicious food. It is about finding the right vehicle, acquiring necessary legal permissions, choosing your staff and finally identifying locations to maximise sales. Take for example the case of Delhi-based Dosa Inc, a food truck business started by Jyoti and her husband Satya in 2012. After eight years, the truck caters to a network of 50,000 households across Delhi, Gurugram and Noida. They also have to be alert about the legal permits and hygiene protocols even today. Like most food truck ventures, Dosa Inc was also started after the couple realised they wanted to take their local (South Indian) cuisine to people but at a low investment and easy maintenance of the vehicle. Another advantage of opting for movable eatery was to cover as many localities as possible. This included both, residential and commercial areas. Dosa Inc was established with an initial investment of Rs 10,00,000 and today it clocks revenue up to Rs 1.5 crores. They may sell their food items at lower prices compared to restaurants but they have still managed to churn profits and expand their business over the years. . Knowing how tedious the process can get, Jyoti shares her experience of setting up a food truck in a hassle-free manner. Infrastructure includes truck, base kitchen, staffing and locations.........Read more

This School Made of Sandstone in the Middle of The Thar Desert Needs no ACs

The Rajkumari Ratnavati Girls’ School in Rajasthan was conceptualised by CITTA founder Michael Daube, and designed by US-based architect Diana Kellogg an you imagine children studying in the middle of the Thar desert, where day temperatures peak close to 50 degrees Celsius and harsh winds cause sand to blow through the day? An architectural marvel, located just a six-minute drive away from Jaisalmer’s famous Sam Dunes, has taken shape in Kanoi village, with an aim to educate girls and empower them. The Rajkumari Ratnavati Girls’ School is made of yellow sandstone, and surprisingly, has no air conditioners. Here, students can study and even play in the protected courtyard without worrying about the extreme weather. The school is visually impressive, with an oval-shaped structure that blends in the desert landscape. The building also comes with elements of sustainability. The school portion, known as the Gyaan Centre, will accommodate 400 girls from kindergarten to Class X. The complex also has a textile museum and performance hall, as well as an exhibition space for artisans to sell their crafts. In another building, women will be trained in traditional arts like weaving and textiles to preserve dying handicrafts. It took a decade for Michael Daube, founder of CITTA, a non-profit organisation, to conceptualise the building, and help it materialise. Michael roped in US-based architect Diana Kellogg, who conceived the design.........Read more

TED’s holiday book list: 68 reads that will inspire you

For this year’s holiday book list, we asked TED speakers, educators and podcasters: “What books have inspired you?” We hope their recommendations will help you refresh and recharge.........Read more

Fried food intake linked to heightened serious heart disease and stroke risk

And the risk rises with each additional 114 g weekly serving, the analysis indicates. It's clear that the Western diet doesn't promote good cardiovascular health, but it's not clear exactly what contribution fried food might make to the risks of serious heart disease and stroke, say the researchers. To shed some light on this, they trawled research databases, looking for relevant studies published up to April 2020, and found 19. They pooled the data from 17, involving 562,445 participants and 36,727 major cardiovascular 'events', such as a or stroke, to assess risk. And they pooled the data from six, involving 754,873 participants and 85,906 deaths over an average monitoring period of 9.5 years, to assess the potential link between fried food consumption and deaths from cardiovascular disease and from any cause. Their analysis showed that compared with the lowest category of weekly fried food consumption, the highest was associated with a 28% heightened risk of major cardiovascular events; a 22% heightened risk of ; and a 37% heightened risk of heart failure. These associations held true when stratified by various study and participant characteristics. What's more, a linear association emerged between fried and major cardiovascular events, coronary heart disease, and heart failure. These risks substantially increased by 3%, 2%, and 12%, respectively, in tandem with each additional 114 g weekly serving.........Read more

SAfrica virus strain more contagious, experts confirm

The new variant is 50 percent more contagious, said epidemiologist Professor Salim Abdool Karim, co-chair of the health ministry's . "There is no evidence the new COVID variant is more severe than the original variant," he added. The experts drew their conclusions about the variant—now the dominant strain in South Africa— from an analysis of data collected from the main infection clusters across the country. With more than 1.3 million people infected, South Africa has recorded more cases than any other country on the continent and has also suffered more deaths, with 37,105 registered. The second wave of the virus has stretched South Africa's health system to its limits. Health Minister Zweli Mkhize on Monday said there had been a 23-percent fall in infections—but that the number of hospital admissions was up by 18.3 percent on the previous week. Dr. Waasila Jassat, another member of the panel, said that even though admissions were up, the death rate from the virus in hospitals had not changed from the first wave of the virus. It was the discovery by South African experts of the new variant—known as 510Y.V2—that convinced the authorities to introduce new restrictions in December to slow its spread. "The world has underestimated this virus," said another panel member, virologist Professor Alex Sigal, adding that it was evolving and adapting to humans. Fears over the new variant helped convince some airlines to limit flights into and out of South Africa.........Read more

AI Is Revolutionizing Marketing Like Never Before: 6 Ways This Is Happening Right Now

Intelligence exhibited by machines. AI is the study of intelligent agents, which can study their environment, and take action which helps them optimally achieve their goals, in the shortest possible time.  A generous, strategical, and tactical act that helps your customer solve a problem. A field of study which takes into account consumer behavior, product engineering, and communication mediums. Robert Williams, a 42-year-old executive has just entered the new shopping complex near his home, with a determined intention to only buy a bar of chocolate for his wife. Suddenly, he receives a Whatsapp notification from his favorite t-shirt brand, informing him about a 50% sale, applicable for the next 5 hours. The notification has a map to the closest retail outlet, which is just 300 meters away from him. Robert forgets about the chocolate, and right away dashes into the t-shirt retail outlet, and buys a couple of t-shirts. No, this isn’t a fantasy anymore, but a real-life example of how AI and Marketing are working together to generate more sales, create more awareness, and delighting loyal customers with extraordinary communication. In fact, AI is right now transforming marketing like never before. ........Read more

Exciting Details Of iPhone 13 Are Out: These 3 New Features Can Prove To Be Gamechanger!

We all know that Apple is planning to launch the iPhone 13 line up in this new year. The top smartphone behemoth’s newest iPhone is all set to be a gamechanger for the smartphone market. camera, sensor, and display. Read on to find out all the details about these new features on the iPhone 13! All the phones in the Apple’s newest iPhone 13 series will be equipped with LiDAR sensors, (Light Detection and Ranging). Also, there are speculations that the entire iPhone 13 series will come with the ToF LiDAR scanner, especially due to the popularity of the iPhone 12 Pro series. This LiDAR scanner was first fitted by Apple in the latest generation iPad Pro in March 2020. The technology is known for enhancing AR experiences by helping apps to rapidly see and recognize the room around them. TheApple iPhone 13 will be similar to that of the iPhone 12 series, as per the popular Apple analyst Ming-Chi Kuo, with the exception of major improvements to the camera technology. Kuo has also stated that the Ultra Wide cameras on the two high-end models will be significantly upgraded to f/1.8, 6P (six-element lens) with autofocus as well.........Read more

Poor Driving Can Increase Your Insurance Premium, IRDAI Suggests Traffic Violation Premium

A working group set up by regulator IRDAI has suggested introduction of 'Traffic Violation Premium' in addition to own damage and third party and other types of motor insurance premium. The group has recommended inserting a fifth section to motor insurance called Traffic Violation Premium in addition to motor own damage insurance, basic third party insurance, additional third party insurance and compulsory personal accident premium. "This section will float over both Own Damage and Third Party sections of Motor insurance and can be attached to any section of motor insurance cover being purchased, chiefly, Own Damage or Third Party insurance," said the exposure draft issued by Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI). IRDAI has invited inputs of all stakeholders on the recommendations till February 1, 2021. The report has recommended a system of calculating traffic violation points basis frequency and severity of different traffic offences. The amount of traffic violation premium will depend upon driving habits which will be determined by the number and types of challans, suggested the report of the working group on 'Linkage of Insurance Premium With Traffic Violation'. "Traffic violation premium shall be payable by the registered owner of the vehicle, whether an individual or an entity. Effectively this means that the owner will take full responsibility for the traffic violations caused by the authorized vehicle driver," it said.........Read more

Dr V Shanta, Doyen of Cancer Care, Passes Away in Chennai at 94

Chairwoman of Cancer Institute, senior oncologist, and doyen of cancer care in India Dr. V Shanta, 94, died at a private hospital in Chennai on Tuesday. 55 am. Her body was placed at the Cancer Institute’s old building where she had joined as a resident medical officer 65 years ago. “We placed her body in the same hall where we had placed the body of our former chief Dr. S Krishnamurthi. He inspired her in many ways,” the institute’s senior epidemiologist Dr. R Swaminathan told Times of India. Prime Minister Narendra Modi condoled her death and said the Cancer Institute has been at the forefront of serving poor and downtrodden. Dr. V Shanta will be remembered for her outstanding efforts to ensure top quality cancer care. The Cancer Institute at Adyar, Chennai is at the forefront of serving the poor and downtrodden. I recall my visit to the Institute in 2018. Saddened by Dr. V Shanta’s demise. Om Shanti. ........Read more

Amid Reports of Side Effects, Bharat Biotech Issues Fact Sheet for Who Should Avoid Getting Covaxin Shot

Bharat Biotech on Tuesday issued a set of cautionary guidelines for people with certain conditions who, it said, should consult with their vaccine provider and preferably avoid getting the Covaxin shot. A shared on the company's website said those suffering from allergies, fever, or a bleeding disorder, among other conditions, should take advice from their doctor/vaccine provider, and possibly steer clear of taking the Covaxin shot. The guidelines issued by Bharat Biotech. People who are immunocompromised (or are receiving a medicine that affects their immune system), pregnant, and breastfeeding women have also been advised against getting vaccinated by Covaxin.........Read more

The Doctrine Of Colourable Order: Can The Courts Do Indirectly What They Can't Directly?

While it is true that the court has stayed farm laws to uphold fair play, it sets a precedent that will encourage protests against government reforms. The Supreme Court the 'implementation' of the farm laws based on several petitions filed against the laws, and the protests associated with it. This sets a precedent wherein interest groups are incentivised to go on streets to receive favourable orders from the court. It is problematic since this instance will be cited by the vested groups for stalling reforms brought about by the government of the day. When a legislation is enacted, it is considered to be constitutional unless proven otherwise. Broadly, the two grounds for unconstitutionality of the statute are that of legislative competence and violation of Part-III of the Constitution which deals with fundamental rights. In the present case, the Supreme Court has not indicated any glaring unconstitutionality to stay the implementation of the laws. It has cited the , wherein the apex court stayed the implementation of the reservation policy brought about by the Maharashtra government through an enactment. There is a distinction between the two since in the latter there were substantial questions of law relating to the interpretation of the Constitution and more importantly, legislative competence in itself was questioned.........Read more

All You Need To Know About The Upcoming Tesla Model 3 In India

Tesla Inc. is all set to commence its operations in India, and the American electric vehicle company recently went on to register its office in Bengaluru. Union Minister Nitin Gadkari had previously also confirmed that Tesla will commence India operations in early 2021. The American company will first commence with sales, and if there’s a healthy response in the country, Tesla will also consider local manufacturing. The Tesla Model 3 is expected to be the automaker’s first offering in India, and could arrive as soon as this year itself. Ahead of its launch, we have put together a list of everything you should know about the upcoming Tesla Model 3, take a look – In terms of design, the Model 3 looks similar to the Model S, but is slightly smaller in size. The car features a clean and flowy silhouette with two 18-inch alloy wheel options to choose from. The car gets flush door handles, while it also features a complete glass roof, from windshield to the rear spoiler. However, the Performance variant gets bigger 20-inch Überturbine wheels wrapped in Pirelli P Zero performance rubber, performance brakes, a carbon fiber rear spoiler, lowered suspension and sporty aluminium alloy pedals.........Read more

"It's Voluntary, Use Some Other App": Delhi High Court On WhatsApp Policy

The Delhi High Court on Monday said accepting the new privacy policy of social messaging app WhatsApp was a "voluntary" thing and one can choose not to use or join that platform if one did not agree with its terms and conditions. "It is a private app. Don't join it. It is a voluntary thing, don't accept it. Use some other app," Justice Sanjeev Sachdeva said to the petitioner, a lawyer, who has challenged WhatsApp's new privacy policy which was slated to come into effect in February but has been deferred till May. The court also said that if the terms and conditions of most mobile apps are read, "you would be surprised as to what all you are consenting to". "Even Google maps captures all your data and stores it," the court said. The court further said it could not understand what data would be leaked according to the petitioner and since the issue requires consideration, it will be listed on January 25 due to paucity of time on Monday. The central government also agreed with the court that the issue needs to be analysed. WhatsApp and Facebook, represented by , told the court that the plea was not maintainable and many of the issues raised in it were without any foundation. They further told the court that private chat messages between family and friends would remain encrypted and cannot be stored by WhatsApp and this position would not change under the new policy.The change in policy would only affect the business chats on WhatsApp, they said.........Read more

Billionaire-Backed Cricket Game Startup Kicks off India's Tech IPO Rush

Nazara Technologies was founded by Nitish Mittersain in 2000. Nazara Technologies Ltd., the cricket games developer backed by billionaire Rakesh Jhunjhunwala, became the first Indian gaming technology company to seek a market debut as mobile entertainment takes off across the world's No. 2 smartphone arena. The Mumbai-headquartered startup filed initial public offering documents with market regulator on Friday. Its impending debut on the local exchanges could encourage other Indian startups to tap public markets, after years of explosive growth in mobile and internet usage created giant private firms from Paytm to Walmart Inc.'s Flipkart. Founded by gamer Nitish Mittersain in 2000, when he was a college undergrad, Nazara is among the firms that have benefited from a global boom in smartphone gaming that began even before the pandemic drove millions online. Mittersain started the company with Rs 3 crore borrowed from friends and family, only to get derailed during the dotcom bust. The firm spent its first decade clearing debt, but steadily built market share by acquiring fellow gaming startups. It's now seeking to be among the first major Indian startups to go public at a time of burgeoning investor interest in the country's technology sphere. Facebook Inc. and Alphabet Inc.'s Google are pouring billions into partnerships with local operator Jio Platforms Inc., while Amazon.com Inc. founder Jeff Bezos has said that "the 21st century is going to be the Indian century." PromotedListen to the , only on ........Read more

Egypt Unveils Ancient Treasures That "Rewrite History"

Workers excavate a site at Egypt's Saqqara necropolis south of Cairo. Egypt on Sunday unveiled ancient treasures found at the Saqqara archaeological site near Cairo, including sarcophagi over 3,000 years old, a discovery that "rewrites history", according to famed Egyptologist Zahi Hawass. Saqqara is a vast necropolis of the ancient Egyptian capital of Memphis, a UNESCO World Heritage Site home to more than a dozen pyramids, ancient monasteries, and animal burial sites. A team headed by Hawass made the finds near the pyramid of King Teti, the first pharaoh of the Sixth Dynasty of the Old Kingdom. More than 50 wooden sarcophagi dating to the New Kingdom (16th century BC to 11th century BC) were found in a burial shaft, Hawass told AFP on Sunday. "This discovery re-writes the history of Saqqara and more specifically the history of the New Kingdom, which began 3,000 years ago," he said. Hawass said his team had discovered a total of 22 shafts, including one containing a "soldier, with his battle axe resting beside him". A stone sarcophagus was also found, he added, as well as "a papyrus around five metres long containing the 17th chapter of the book of the dead... masks, wooden boats, games the ancient Egyptians used to play". "It is a rare and new discovery because most of the artefacts we found are dated back to the New Kingdom, whereas in Saqqara, it's usually more around 500 BC," he added. A number of objects were displayed to the press on Sunday, while excavations of the site are ongoing.........Read more

Vaccines off to smooth start, cross 2-lakh mark; dip in active cases

Of the 2,24,301 beneficiaries from the priority group who received their doses by the end of two days of the nationwide vaccination programme against , only 447 reported adverse events following immunisation (AEFI), the Union Health Ministry said on Sunday. Of the 447, only three required hospitalisation, with two of them being discharged. On Sunday, only 553 sessions were conducted across the country, with 17,072 beneficiaries being vaccinated, the ministry said. fever, headache, and nausea; only three of them required hospitalisation… One has been discharged from Northern Railway, Delhi, in 24 hours; the second beneficiary has been discharged from AIIMS, Delhi; and the third is under observation at AIIMS Rishikesh and is doing fine.” The Health Ministry reiterated that the adverse events “may or may not” be related to the vaccines or vaccination process and that “protocols are also in place for systematic investigation”.........Read more

Hike messaging app shuts down: Here's a look at its journey

In the current interconnected world, instant messaging apps have become a necessity. There are a bunch of instant messaging apps available for various platforms for users to stay connected with their family and friends. WhatsApp which is the most popular messaging app has been coming under the scanner by users for its controversial privacy policy update. In the year 2012 when Hike was launched, its popularity surged and reached new heights. But after some time, it starts falling because foreign messaging apps like WhatsApp have influenced people globally. Hike Sticker chats as it was also called the largest Indian freeware, cross-platform instant messaging application. By August 2016, Hike had close to 100 million registered users and also supported 10 regional Indian languages. The announcement about Hike wrapping up its operations was made recently by the CEO of the Hike Messenger app, Kevin Bharti Mittal on Twitter on January 6. He wrote, “Today we’re announcing that we will be sunsetting Sticker Chat in Jan’21. We thank you all for giving us your trust. We wouldn’t be here without you.” While there is a lookout for effective alternatives to WhatsApp, there is no clarity regarding why the company is shutting down its service. The users of Hike Messenger can get their conversations and data downloaded from within the app itself.........Read more

Parliamentary Committee on IT summons Facebook, Twitter officials over 'prevention of social media misuse'

A parliamentary Standing Committee on Information Technology has summoned Facebook and Twitter officials on January 21 in connection with the issue of prevention of misuse of social media. A notice addressed to the Chairperson and Members of the Standing Committee on Information Technology, the agenda of the next sitting of the committee, to be held on January 21, states, "Evidence of representatives of Ministry of Electronics and Information Technology and to hear the views of the representatives of Facebook and Twitter on the subject 'Safeguarding citizens rights and prevention of misuse of social/online news media platforms including special emphasis on women security in the digital space'." The summons come amid a row over messaging app WhatsApp's recent updates in its privacy policy. WhatsApp updated its privacy policy last week making it compulsory for its users to accept those terms and conditions failing which the services of the instant messaging app would be blocked after February 8. Following backlash from its users, till May. A around how it processes user data and partners with Facebook to offer integrations across the social media giant's products.........Read more

IRCTC Latest News: E-catering Services in Trains Soon, RailRestro to Deliver Your Favourite Food

Starting from this month itself, you are going to get your favourite food in the train while travelling, thanks to the initiative taken by the Indian Railways. As per latest updates, the Railways has allowed the e-catering services to resume in the trains. They will now be permitted to resume services depending upon the feasibility, availability of staff and local restrictions. Interestingly, the food delivery on trains will be served at select stations across the nation, subject to the service providers following the operation instructions issued by the local governing authorities. The Railways had made the announcement, after Manish Chandra, CEO and Founder, RailRestro, had written to the Ministry of Railways and IRCTC officials to allow the e-catering services in the trains. To begin the service, RailRestro, an IRCTC-authorized e-catering wing, has received confirmation from the Ministry of Railways and is set to operate from the last week of January 2021. The company has issued guidelines which include thermal scanning of the restaurant’s staff and delivery personnel several times during the operational hours, sanitization of kitchens daily at regular intervals, use of protective face masks or face shields by restaurant staff and delivery personnel and permission to prepare food only if the body temperature is below 99oF. ........Read more

Beware of KYC Fraud: SBI Alerts Customers, Know How to Protect Yourself From Online Fraud

India’s largest public sector bank, The State Bank of India (SBI) has alerted its customers to beware and take precautions against the increasing cases of online fraud. Issuing an alert through a video on Twitter, the bank put out a warning that there have been many incidents in the recent past where fraudsters called people in the name of and churned out personal information from them. SBI Alerts Customers Against Online Fraud cybercrime.gov.in.” — State Bank of India (@TheOfficialSBI) How to know if it’s fraud?........Read more

46-Year-Old Ward Boy Dies Day After Taking Coronavirus Vaccine in UP's Moradabad

A 46-year-old ward boy at one of the district hospitals in Moradabad district of Uttar Pradesh died a day after receiving coronavirus vaccine on the first day of the vaccination drive. The ward boy, Mahipal Singh, reportedly complained of breathlessness and unease, especially in the chest after taking a jab of covishield, the Serum Institute of India’s COVID-19 vaccine. “He (ward boy) was given the Covishield vaccine at about 12 PM on Saturday. A day later, he suffered pain in the chest with breathlessness. He had worked the night shift after vaccination and we don’t think the death is due to any side effect of the vaccine. We are trying to verify the exact reason of his death”, Times of India quoted the chief medical officer (CMO) of the hospital as saying. In Delhi, a 22-year-old security guard at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), was admitted to the intensive care unit (ICU) as he developed an allergic reaction after receiving coronavirus vaccine. Reports claimed that the guard suffered headache, rash, respiratory distress, and tachycardia after getting the first shot. The doctors informed that his symptoms worsened about half an hour after this initial stabilization. Hospital sources said that his condition is stable.........Read more

Smokers, Vegetarians at Lesser Risk of Coronavirus Infection: CSIR Survey

Smokers and vegetarians were found to have lower seropositivity indicating that they may be at a lesser risk of getting infected by coronavirus, according to a pan-India serosurvey conducted by the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research in its nearly 40 institutes. The survey also found that those with blood group 'O' may be less susceptible to the infection, while people with 'B' and 'AB' blood groups were at a higher risk. For its study, the Council of Scientific and Industrial Research (CSIR) took samples of 10,427 adult individuals working in its laboratories or institutions and their family members, based on voluntary participation, to assess the presence of antibodies to SARS-CoV-2. The study which was piloted by CSIR-Institute of Genomics and Integrative Biology (IGIB), Delhi said of the 10,427 individuals, 1,058 (10.14 per cent) had antibodies against SARS-CoV-2. A follow up on 346 seropositive individuals among the samples after three months revealed stable' to higher' antibody levels against SARS-CoV-2, but declining plasma activity for neutralising the virus, Shantanu Sengupta, senior scientist at IGIB and one of the co-authors of the paper said.........Read more

Apple Watch, Garmin, Fitbit Trackers Can Detect Covid-19 Cases Days in Advance, Finds Study

Smartwatches such as the Apple Watch, and fitness trackers such as those made by companies like Garmin and Fitbit, can be critical in detecting Covid-19 cases among asymptomatic patients days before they show any sign of being unwell, claims research studies conducted by various bodies such as the Mount Sinai Health System in New York and Stanford University in California. According to the studies, trackers such as Fitbit, Garmin and the Apple watch can detect heart rate variability – a metric that experts claim is key to finding out whether something is wrong with your body. The metric of heart rate variability essentially measures the time between two heart beats. If your health is fine and your body is not suffering from any infection, it is common for your heart rate to fluctuate depending on the situation that you are in. For instance, your heart rate will change as your nervous system reacts to stress, relaxed times and any relevant time. However, if your body is suffering from infections, and in particular inflammatory infections, the nervous system reacts slower, leading to lesser variability in heart rates.........Read more

'It is Our Duty': How Professionals in Odisha's Puri Are Keeping the Art of Pattachitra Alive

As three cars of tourists make their way into the heritage crafts village of Raghurajpur in Odisha's Puri district which is famous worldwide for its 'Pattachitra' art, the villagers display anxious looks. Sitting in the foyers of their houses which are artistically painted, they look up curiously at the visitors in the car before passing a smile. Some turn back to carefully paint the 'Pattachitra' while some welcome the visitors with folded hands. In the middle of the village which has houses in two rows facing each other, is the house of Bhagaban Swain, a 65-year-old retired school teacher. The four walls of the medium sized room are packed with shelves displaying the ancient Pattachitra paintings beside various other forms on wooden and stone carved pieces. Bhagaban Swain's son Shibanarayan Swain, 23 is doing MCA from Odisha University of Agriculture & Technology, Bhubaneswar and takes pride in displaying the art forms like Patta painting, Tasser painting and palm leaf engraving that has been the tradition for not only his family but the approximately 160 houses in the village. His mother Sakhi too has mastered the art with perfection.........Read more

Tandav Controversy: Amazon Prime Gets Centre's Notice After Protests Erupt Over 'Mocking Hindu Deities'

The Information and Broadcasting Ministry on Sunday issued a notice to Amazon Prime over its series 'Tandav'. The move comes after several leaders protested against it with BJP MP Manoj Kotak writing to I&B minister Prakash Javadekar seeking a ban on the series for ridiculing Hindu deities. 'Tandav' stars actors Saif Ali Khan, Dimple Kapadia, Sunil Grover, Tigmanshu Dhulia, Dino Morea, Kumud Mishra, Mohd Zeeshan Ayyub, Gauhar Khan and Kritika Kamra, and premiered on the streaming platform on Friday. Filmmaker Ali Abbas Zafar has created, directed and produced the political drama with Himanshu Kishan Mehra and it is written by Gaurav Solanki, best known for "Article 15".........Read more

After postponing privacy policy update, Whatsapp takes THIS step to retain users

Whatsapp has postponed the new policy for the time being and the company is constantly engaged in damage control. Popular messaging app WhatsApp, which is facing criticism for the changes made in the privacy policy, has decided to take a step back. Whatsapp has postponed the new policy for the time being and the company is constantly engaged in damage control. After giving several clarifications, Whatsapp tried to reach out to the people about the privacy policy by applying status on Sunday. 1. Whatsapp gave clarification by using status WhatsApp had recently changed the Privacy Policy and started sending its notifications to users, stating that by February 8, 2021, users should accept the new policy if they want to use WhatsApp. After this the debate started and the company had to postpone the policy. Whatsapp tried to clarify the privacy policy by putting up four status on Sunday. 2. 'Committed to users' privacy' 3. 'No one can read personal chats of users' In second status, WhatsApp said, 'All chats on WhatsApp are protected with end-to-end encryption and no one can read or listen to your personal chat.'........Read more

Ice cream contaminated with coronavirus found in Tianjin, China

The coronavirus was found on ice cream produced in eastern China, prompting a recall of cartons from the same batch, according to the government. The Daqiaodao Food Co, Ltd in Tianjin, adjacent to Beijing, was sealed and its employees were being tested for the coronavirus, a city government statement said. There was no indication anyone had contracted the virus from the ice cream. For latest updates on coronavirus vaccine, click here Most of the 29,000 cartons in the batch had yet to be sold, the government said. It said that 390 sold in Tianjin were being tracked down and authorities elsewhere were notified of sales to their areas. The ingredients included New Zealand milk powder and whey powder from Ukraine, the government said. The Chinese government has suggested the disease, first detected in the central city of Wuhan in late 2019, came from abroad and has highlighted what it says are discoveries of the coronavirus on imported fish and other food, though foreign scientists are sceptical. Personalized, Latest & Breaking News The coronavirus was found on ice cream produced in eastern China, prompting a recall of cartons from the same batch, according to the government. The Daqiaodao Food Co, Ltd in Tianjin, adjacent to Beijing, was sealed and its employees were being tested for the coronavirus, a city government statement said. There was no indication anyone had contracted the virus from the ice cream.........Read more

After dizzying gyrations, what's bitcoin really worth?

The virtual currency barrelled to new highs to rise more than 400 per cent over the past year, before promptly sliding some 20 per cent and then settling around $36,000. When it started life in 2009 as open-source software, bitcoin was essentially worth zero -- though within a year it had reached the heady heights of eight cents. At today's market rates, bloated by a surge in institutional demand, the digital unit's market capitalisation is worth some $670 billion with myriad other crypto coins such as ethereum lifting the sector nominally close to the trillion mark. Although that's small potatoes compared to the $68 trillion or so swilling around world stock markets, it is nonetheless the sort of financial territory staked out by Wall Street tech royalty such as Google, Apple or Tesla. Lost passwords lock millionaires out of their bitcoin fortunes One tech site, AssetDash.com, notes that bitcoin is currently worth around as much as Facebook and a little more than Chinese e-retail giant Alibaba. Although deep-pocketed investors have recently become enthusiasts, crypto was in its early days the preserve of geeky amateur investors. It is the latter who have mainly suffered as an estimated four million of the roughly 19 million bitcoin units currently in circulation have been lost.........Read more