Tuesday, 2 January 2018

Articles to Read – 2018-01-02

You may be interested in reading these articles

Ask the experts: will robots take over the world?
Robots can do a lot for us: they can explore space or cut our toenails. But do advances in robotics and artificial intelligence hold hidden threats? Three leaders in their fields answer questions about our relationships with robots.

Can blockchain technology help poor people around the world?
The author of this post sees four main ways blockchain systems are already beginning to connect some of the world’s poorest people with the global economy. They include: Sending money internationally. Insurance, Helping Small Business, and Humanitarian aid,

A made-in-India transistor that can make India’s IoT technology a reality: 
Researchers at the Indian Institute of Technology Bombay (IITB), in a collaborative effort with ISRO’s Semiconductor Labs (SCL), Chandigarh, have developed a completely indigenous Bipolar Junction Transistor (BJT) that can work with the other type of transistor called BiCMOS. BJTs are touted to play a big role in the Internet of things (IoT) applications. A major milestone of Centre for Excellence in Nanoelectronics (CEN) under the “Make in India” initiative, the indigenous transistor reduces the dependence on multinational semiconductor manufacturers and is a major advantage for India’s space and defence projects.

How to identify adulterants in everyday food items: FSSAI guidelines
The Food Safety and Standards Authority of India (FSSAI) has released a manual for quick detection of adulterants in everyday food items. The book “Detect Adulteration with Rapid Test (DART)” lists 41 easy tests that can be done at home. With tests for items ranging from milk and milk products to food grains and spices, the book aims to create awareness about food safety. Here is a list of some tests you can do today at home.

What is a predatory journal?
A few things to look out for and signs that give away a bogus journal. Recently, the Hyderabad-based OMICS Group, which publishes over 700 journals, was in the news for its deceptive business practices. The US-Federal Trade Commission charged OMICS with making false claims about peer reviewing and listing editors who have not agreed to be associated with the journals. The number of predatory journals is increasing day-by-day and also getting more difficult to identify. Jeffrey Beall, a librarian at the University of Colorado in Denver, first coined the term “predatory journals” and maintained a listing of predatory journals which was later taken down. Cabell’s International launched a revised version of the list called Cabell’s Blacklist, which can be accessed for a fee at the company’s website. With over 4,000 predatory journals (according to Cabell’s Blacklist), here are a few things to look out for and signs that give away a bogus journal.

Six cosmic catastrophes that could wipe out life on Earth

The good news about plastic waste
It’s suspected that much of the “recycling” shipped to Asia may be joining local waste in the Great Pacific Garbage Patch. This soupy collection of plastic debris is trapped in place by ocean currents, slowly breaking into ever-smaller pieces, but never breaking down. Covered by bacterial plaques, they are mistaken for food by fish. Ingested, they contaminate the food chain and, potentially, may even be disrupting the biophysical systems that keep our oceans stable, thus contributing to climate change. So we need to use far less plastic, re-use what we can, and dispose of what we must far more wisely. In facing this challenge, developed countries can learn from innovations in the less-developed world. People, globally, are innovating, creating new processes to use waste plastics and making new objects and art forms.

Best Tamil films of 2017
After toiling over much of the 200-odd films that released this year,The Hindu’s film critics list the top films that made their time at the cinemas totally worth it.

Nip and tuck that can mend education system in Tamil Nadu
We enter 2018 with a baggage — Mcdonaldisation of IITs, IIMs and CFTIs, strangulation of deemed universities, commoditisation of entrance exams and admissions, taxation of auxiliary education services, trivialisation of teaching profession, discrimination among institutions and malnutrition in policy making are a few to name. This is reflected in the rush for school admissions, postadmission pressure for school students chasing marks in all exams, mindless mechanisms for professional college admissions, dwindling respect for teachers, ivory-tower elitism of premier institutions and challenging employment options among others. The art of public policy is to ensure a smooth interface that recognises the coherent synergy of different stakeholders who contribute to education in significantly different measure. Stereotypes and rhetoric have no place in public policy discourse as an enlightened public expects at least five transformational changes in the education sector in 2018. 

T.N. has most engg. colleges with less than 30% intake
Lack of employment demand cited as a reason. Tamil Nadu has the most number of engineering colleges with less than 30% intake of students this year. The State has 526 colleges of which 177 have enrolled only 12,399 students this year, according to Satya Pal Singh, Minister of State for Human Resources.

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