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Showing posts from September, 2013
NEW TECHNOLOGY MADE SPEACHLESS EMPOWERED
A new technology that could help speechless people who use devices to talk, speak in real human voices instead of a computerised sound, has been developed by researchers, including one of Indian-origin. One of the most famous speechless individuals is British physicist Stephen Hawking. To communicate with people, he uses computers that generate synthesised voices, but they sound stilted and unnatural. Scientists have now developed VocaliD, a product that blends real human voices from healthy talkers with characteristics of the client's unique speech patterns. "Right now, people who need to use synthesised voices to talk for them use a handful of generic voices, because creating them is time-consuming and costly," said Rupal Patel, associate professor at Northeastern University. "We feel strongly the voice from the device should reflect something about that individual," Patel said. Patel, along with Tim B…
ROBOTS TURN KEY IN HUMAN RELATIONS
Given the proper stimulus and behaviour, humans are able to form relationships with just about anything - even with robots! It's becoming more common to have robots sub in for humans to do dirty or sometimes dangerous work. But researchers are finding that in some cases, people have started to treat robots like pets, friends, or even as an extension of themselves. That raises the question, if a soldier attaches human or animal-like characteristics to a field robot, can it affect how they use the robot? Julie Carpenter from the University of Washington interviewed highly trained soldiers in the US who use robots to disarm explosives – about how they feel about the robots they work with every day. Part of her research involved determining if the relationship these soldiers have with field robots could affect their decision-making ability and mission outcomes. Soldiers told her that attachment to their robots didn't affect thei…
BULLION ASSOCIATION SUPPORTS MODI
The Bombay Bullion Association Ltd (BBA), the apex body of bullion and jewellery bodies in the country, has announced its support for Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi as BJP's prime ministerial candidate. BBA president Mohit Kamboj along with some others joined BJP in the presence of senior party leader Gopinath Munde here yesterday. BBA had extended its support to Modi as the UPA government had brought about a "policy paralysis" in the economy, Kamboj said. "There are over 50 lakh workers associated with the bullion and gold industry, which has been facing the brunt of the current policies of the UPA government. "We at BBA strongly believe that a Modi-led NDA government would normalise the industry by introducing friendly policies," he added. Members of Bharat Diamond Bourse have said they will host Modi at a function at Bandra-Kurla Complex here on Sept. 30. BJP president Rajnath Singh had last wee…
MANY MORE HAPPY RETURNS  OF THE DAY TO THE LEGEND

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DIAMOND FOR AUCTION
CONGRESS ON ELECTION FEVER
Rahul Gandhi today held deliberations with senior leaders including Delhi Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit as the party has chalked out plans for rallies and visits of top leaders for five election-bound states. The closed-door meeting that took place at Rahul's residence was attended among others by Mizoram Chief Minister Pu Lalthanwala and AICC general secretaries Shakeel Ahmed, Gurudas Kamath, B K Hariprasad, Luizinho Falerio and Mohan Prakash, who are looking after Delhi, Rajasthan, Chhattisgarh, Mizoram and Madhya Pradesh respectively. Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA Chairperson Sonia Gandhi will visit Rajasthan on September 21 and 22 respectively to inaugurate metro and oil refinery projects in the state. Rahul will address a rally in Jagdalpur in Chhattisgarh on September 26. Sources said that during the meeting, Rahul reviewed the poll preparations of the party and took a report of the ground realities in all the five states. …
NEW STEERING DEVICE TO AVOID ACCIDENTS
An innovative new steering device that could help prevent hazards like rear-end collisions and rollovers caused by panic over-steering has been developed. It can take up to two and a half turns to steer a modern vehicle. While turning, the driver must release the wheel in the necessary hand-over-hand movement, which is unsafe. In the upcoming Human Factors and Ergonomics Society (HFES) 2013 Annual Meeting, Rene Guerster will propose an alternative steering device that could help to prevent hazards such as rear-end collisions and rollovers caused by panic over-steering. Severe sudden turns are extremely difficult with today's steering systems, researchers said. Developing what he terms "computer-mediated steering," Guerster believes his proposed technology, already common in engine controls, would enable steering around a suddenly-appearing obstacle without hand-over-hand fumbling. Guerster's yoke-like device, cu…
BIG CATS EVOLVED AS TIGERS
In a first, scientists have mapped the tiger genome, including that of the Bengal Tiger, and identified genetic mutations that helped the big cat evolve to become a top predator. Scientists also sequenced the genomes of the lion and snow leopard, in an effort to conserve and protect the endangered species. The study provides clues to how big cats evolved to become top predators with superior muscle strength and a carnivorous diet, 'BBC News' reported. Researchers found that the tiger shares 96 per cent of its genes with the house cat. The only cat to have its DNA mapped was the domestic one. Researchers led by Yun Sung Cho at the Personal Genomics Institute, Genome Research Foundation in Suwon, South Korea, sequenced the genome of a Siberian tiger. The individual, Taegeuk, is a nine-year-old male from Everland Zoo in South Korea. The team then sequenced the DNA of four other big cats - the African lion, snow leopard, white Bengal ti…
CLEVAGE SHOW OF SAMEERA REDDY

FOCUS AREAS 7

ASSOCHAM SET AGENDA FOR MP POLLS
Ahead of the Madhya Pradesh assembly polls to be held in November this year, apex industry body Assocham has urged the political parties to focus on seven areas for the development and growth of the state. "Rural development, women empowerment, employment generation, healthcare development, education and skill development for job-oriented growth are among the areas that need to be focused on, Assocham National Secretary General D S Rawat told a press conference. The Associated Chambers of Commerce and Industry of India (Assocham) has submitted its paper to all major political parties in Madhya Pradesh -- BJP, Congress, Bahujan Samaj Party, Samajwadi Party and others. The organisation has urged them to include these seven points in the manifestos "to create consensus" on certain significant economic issues to achieve double-digit growth during the next decade. "People-friendly policy reforms to bring in transparency and boosting inves…
ANNOYED ADVANI KEEPS DISTANCE
Modi, Advani cold vibes visible at Jethmalani party New Delhi, Sept 15 (PTI) The cold vibes between Narendra Modi and L K Advani, who has been unhappy over his nomination as BJP Prime Ministerial candidate, were visible when the two leaders ran into each other at a party to celebrate Ram Jethmalani's 90th birthday here tonight. Modi bent down before Advani in a sign of respect and then took his seat close by with Jethmalani in the middle. Advani and Modi exchanged pleasantries but hardly talked to each other. Advani, who was against the party naming Modi as its PM candidate before the upcoming assembly polls to five states, had stayed away from the crucial BJP Parliamentary Board meeting on Friday when the decision was announced. The same day Advani shot off a letter to Singh expressing anguish and disappointment over the BJP president's style of functioning. After his anointment, Modi had driven to Advani's residence to seek his blessings.
NARENDRA MODI...BJP PM CANDIDATE
Narendra Modi, a staunch proponent of Hinduvta, was today anointed BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate for the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, ending months of suspense over his elevation amid stiff opposition by party patriarch L K Advani. The announcement was made by BJP chief Rajnath Singh after a meeting of the party's Parliamentary Board which was skipped by Advani who expressed "anguish" over the way the party was functioning. Except Advani, the meeting of the 12-member Board was attended by other leaders like Sushma Swaraj, Murli Manohar Joshi, Arun Jaitley and Nitin Gadkari. The decision on Modi came on a day of fast-paced developments and back-to-back meetings and last minute efforts to bring around Advani,Joshi and Swaraj. Making the announcement, Rajnath Singh said the decision had been taken by the Parliamentary Board as per the party's tradition. The party had announced its Prime Ministerial candidate in 2009 elections also, he not…
DEATH SENTENCE FOR DELHI RAPISTS

Death sentence was today awarded to the four convicts in the sensational December 16 gangrape- cum-murder case by a court here which said the "beastly" and "hair-raising" manner in which the crime was committed against a 23-year-old girl falls in the rarest of rare category. "Accordingly, the convicts be hanged by neck till they are dead," Additional Sessions Judge Yogesh Khanna said after observing that the inhuman and ghastly acts of the convicts shocked the collective conscience of the nation and deserve exemplary punishment, which was pronounced nine months after an agonising wait. The victim's family, which had expressed dissatisfaction when the sixth accused, a juvenile, was convicted and sentenced to a maximum of three years in a reformation home by the Juvenile Justice Board, today heaved a sigh of relief on hearing the death penalty for the four adult convicts. "'Halak mein saans atki thi, jo ab bahar …
US FIRM INTRODUCES NEW GENERATION  PACE MAKER IN INDIA
St Jude Medical Inc, a global medical device company, today announced the launch of next generation pacemaker in India. The NYSE-listed firm announced the first commercial implant of `Allure Quadra', a cardiac resynchronisation therapy pacemaker (CRT-P), in the country. The first-to-market quadripolar pacemaker system offers more pacing options for patients with heart failure (HF), a company release said here. Quadripolar leads allow for increased implant efficiencies, which clinical data indicates can result in fewer surgical revisions. Broad clinical evidence on the advantages of the quadripolar technology has been documented in more than 100 publications worldwide, it said. Explaining how this new technology works, Anil Saxena of Fortis Escorts Hospital, said: "Historically, pacing systems that treat heart failure included a lead with only one electrode in the heart. Later, these were replaced by leads…
7th CENTURY GOLD DISCOVERED IN ISRAEL
A treasure trove containing thirty-six gold coins and precious gold and silver jewelry dating back to early seventh century AD has been unearthed near the Temple Mount in Israel. The excavations by Hebrew University of Jerusalem archaeologist Dr Eilat Mazar also consists of a 10-cm gold medallion with the menorah (Temple candelabrum), a shofar (ram's horn) and a Torah scroll symbol etched into it. Mazar called the discovery "a breathtaking, once-in-a-lifetime discovery." "Discovering a golden seven-branched Menorah from the seventh century AD at the foot of the Temple Mount was a complete surprise," said Mazar. The discovery can be dated to the late Byzantine period or early seventh century AD. The gold treasure was discovered in a ruined Byzantine public structure a mere 50 meters from the Temple Mount's southern wall. The position of the items as they were discovered indicates that one bundle was carefully hidden under…
ISRO ON MARS MISSIONIndia's upcoming Mars Orbiter Mission (MOM) seeks to reveal whether there is methane, considered a "precursor chemical" for life, on the Red Planet, key officials behind the ambitious venture said today. A Methane Sensor, one of the five payloads (scientific instruments) onboard the spacecraft, would look to detect the presence of the gas, MOM Project Director Arunan S said. He said the sensor was aimed at understanding whether life existed on Mars or if it would have life in future. "Methane is fundamentally base for life on any planet," he said. M Annadurai, Programme Director, IRS & SSS (Indian Remote Sensing & Small, Science and Student Satellites), said: "Most probably we will be able to answer whether there is presence of Methane. If it's there, yes; if it's not, not there. If it's available, where it's available". After a media preview of the Mars orbiter at ISRO Satellite Centre here, where it is bei…
OBAMA PUT ACTION AGAINST SYRIA ON HOLD
A day after Syria agreed with a Russian proposal to surrender its chemical weapons, a skeptic US President Barack Obama today said he would keep the military on high alert to attack the embattled Syrian regime if diplomacy fails to yield any result. Obama, facing implacable opposition to a military intervention in Syria in the US Congress and from war-weary Americans, termed the Russian proposal to place Syria's chemical weapons under international control as an "encouraging" sign. He, however, said he would hold off on military action for now to pursue the initiative. Addressing to the nation from the White House, Obama said he would also discuss it with his Russian counterpart Vladimir Putin, who has been opposing any military action against Syria without UN approval. "It's too early to tell whether this offer will succeed, and any agreement must verify that the Assad regime keeps its commitments," Obama said. "B…
TAGORE'S HAND WRITTEN POEM UNDER AUCTION

A handwritten poem by Rabindranath Tagore and a collection of posters commissioned by Mahatma Gandhi are among select artworks that will go under the hammer at global auctioneer Christie's New York sale this month. A total of 81 works by Rabindranath Tagore, Abanindranath Tagore and Nandlal Bose, sourced from the personal collection of Bose's nephew Supratik Bose, would be held on September 17. The sale "The Art of Nandalal Bose, Abanindranath Tagore, and Rabindranath Tagore: The Collection of Supratik Bose," comes ahead of Christie's inaugural sale in India to be held in Mumbai in December this year. The collection by Supratik Bose, a retired architect and officer at Harvard University, is being put up in the market for the first time, according to auctioneers. "We are deeply honoured to have been entrusted by Supratik Bose to handle this extraordinary collection that his grandfather Nandalal Bose handed down to h…

WEST INDIAN DAY IN NEW YORK