Linguist study finds core group of words has survived for 15000 years

first_imgMap showing approximate regions where languages from the seven Eurasiatic language families are spoken. The color-shaded areas should be treated as suggestive only, as current language rangeswill not necessarily correspond to original homelands, and language boundaries will often overlap. For example, the Indo-European language Swedish is spoken along with the Uralic Finnish in southern Finland. Credit: PNAS doi: 10.1073/pnas.1218726110 Citation: Linguist study finds core group of words has survived for 15,000 years (2013, May 7) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-05-linguist-core-group-words-survived.html More information: Ultraconserved words point to deep language ancestry across Eurasia, PNAS, Published online before print May 6, 2013, doi: 10.1073/pnas.1218726110AbstractThe search for ever deeper relationships among the World’s languages is bedeviled by the fact that most words evolve too rapidly to preserve evidence of their ancestry beyond 5,000 to 9,000 y. On the other hand, quantitative modeling indicates that some “ultraconserved” words exist that might be used to find evidence for deep linguistic relationships beyond that time barrier. Here we use a statistical model, which takes into account the frequency with which words are used in common everyday speech, to predict the existence of a set of such highly conserved words among seven language families of Eurasia postulated to form a linguistic superfamily that evolved from a common ancestor around 15,000 y ago. We derive a dated phylogenetic tree of this proposed superfamily with a time-depth of ∼14,450 y, implying that some frequently used words have been retained in related forms since the end of the last ice age. Words used more than once per 1,000 in everyday speech were 7- to 10-times more likely to show deep ancestry on this tree. Our results suggest a remarkable fidelity in the transmission of some words and give theoretical justification to the search for features of language that might be preserved across wide spans of time and geography.Press release Journal information: Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences More words dying and fewer words being added to languages in digital age: study © 2013 Phys.orgcenter_img Most people realize that all languages are constantly evolving—new words are added and others are lost and some even undergo changes in pronunciation. For that reason, it would seem surprising to find that some commonly used words have survived—albeit in modified form—for as long as perhaps 15,000 years. That’s what the researchers in this new effort have found. They believe that people speaking a single language in early Eurasia used a core group of words that are found in most present-day, subsequently evolving languages.The team acknowledges that most in the field believe that words don’t survive any longer than eight or nine thousand years—there’s just too much “weathering.” But their research shows otherwise.Most language experts agree that a “proto-Eurasiatic” language existed and was spoken by a wide group of people in Europe and parts of Asia thousands of years ago. That language eventually evolved into English, German, Spanish, Italian, etc. Until now however, most in the field have agreed that as the languages matured, words from the old language were lost. The researchers on this new effort disagree, and they say it’s all based on “cognates”—words that have basically the same meaning in different languages and sound similar as well. In this new effort, the research team has been studying cognates and their use in several modern languages. They’ve also been comparing them with the 200 standard words that linguists agree are core to virtually all languages. And finally, they also looked at “proto-words”—words that researchers make up when attempting to define cognates in long-dead languages.After careful analysis and comparison, the researchers arrived at a list of cognates that appear to not only exist in all modern languages that evolved from the proto-Eurasiatic language, but that actually existed in the early language, as well. Put another way, words like “father” or “fish,” or at least their cognate forms, have been in use for at least 15,000 years. (Phys.org) —A team of linguistics experts from the U.S., Great Britain and New Zealand has found evidence that suggests a core group of words used in a common language thousands of years ago has survived to this day. In their paper published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, the researchers claim that some core words used in modern languages are related to some spoken 15,000 years ago. Explore further This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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Researchers replicate supershear earthquakes in the lab

first_imgAerial photo of the San Andreas Fault in the Carrizo Plain, northwest of Los Angeles. Credit: Wikipedia. Citation: Researchers replicate supershear earthquakes in the lab (2013, June 7) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2013-06-replicate-supershear-earthquakes-lab.html (Phys.org) —A team of geology researchers working in France has for the first time recreated the conditions in a lab that lead to a phenomenon known as a supershear earthquake. In their paper published in the journal Science, the researchers describe how they found that compressing granite under certain conditions caused ruptures to propagate faster than shear waves leading to an observable supershear event. Explore further Earthquake acoustics offer hint that a tsunami is imminent, researchers find More information: From Sub-Rayleigh to Supershear Ruptures During Stick-Slip Experiments on Crustal Rocks, Science 7 June 2013: Vol. 340 no. 6137 pp. 1208-1211 DOI: 10.1126/science.1235637ABSTRACTSupershear earthquake ruptures propagate faster than the shear wave velocity. Although there is evidence that this occurs in nature, it has not been experimentally demonstrated with the use of crustal rocks. We performed stick-slip experiments with Westerly granite under controlled upper-crustal stress conditions. Supershear ruptures systematically occur when the normal stress exceeds 43 megapascals (MPa) with resulting stress drops on the order of 3 to 25 MPa, comparable to the stress drops inferred by seismology for crustal earthquakes. In our experiments, the sub-Rayleigh–to–supershear transition length is a few centimeters at most, suggesting that the rupture of asperities along a fault may propagate locally at supershear velocities. In turn, these sudden accelerations and decelerations could play an important role in the generation of high-frequency radiation and the overall rupture-energy budget.center_img In a “normal” earthquake, seismic waves are generated as a result of faults in the Earth’s crust that rupture. At the same time, deep within the Earth, shear waves are generated that also propagate but are not felt on the surface. Shear waves tend to move much faster than seismic waves. Sometimes, though, in very rare instances, seismic waves gain a boost in speed and wind up propagating faster than sheer waves. The result is what geologists call a sonic-boom type of earthquake that can be far worse than its magnitude would indicate. Supershear earthquakes have been recorded occurring in nature just a few times, but until now have never been reproduced in the lab.To recreate the special conditions that lead to a supershear earthquake, the researchers subjected slabs of granite to very high pressure—pushing them together while also applying sideways pressure until they slipped against one another—releasing a wave of energy. It’s the same type of experiment used to study various types of earthquake conditions. In this instance, the researchers replicated the experiment 200 times—each time taking careful measurements with acoustic sensors. The team found that by manipulating the pressure exerted they could induce supershear like conditions. Their experiment was the first ever to succeed in recreating a supershear earthquake-like event in the lab. More importantly, it also shows that supershear earthquakes can occur at a much smaller level than researchers had believed. This means, they say, that such earthquakes should be able to occur much more often in the real world.The results obtained by the researchers aren’t a sign that people should worry, however, because it’s quite possible that the conditions in the lab were optimal for the creation of supershear earthquakes, most specifically the presence of smooth even granite surfaces—this is generally not the case in nature, and likely why they occur so seldom in the real world. The researchers suggest it’s possible that many supershear earthquakes happen in nature, but we don’t know about them because they occur in sections of faults that don’t move. © 2013 Phys.org Journal information: Science This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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Some monkeys can understand danger calls made by different monkey species

first_img This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Human beings are the only species known to have a complete language, though other animals make sounds that can be interpreted by others of their species, and now it appears that at least in one case, the sounds made by one species can be interpreted by members of another. In this new effort focusing on the communication skills of monkeys the researchers looked to Campbell’s and Diana monkeys living in the Ivory Coast.Prior research has found that male Campbell’s monkeys use at least six unique sounds to convey information to their group members. Two of those “krak” and “krak-oo” have been found to be variations of the same idea—there is a threat at hand. Krak is more specific however, it means that a leopard is nearby whereas adding that oo suffix waters it down to meaning there is some threat, but it is not a leopard. Because Diana monkeys live in the same places as Campbell’s monkeys, the team wondered if they were able to understand the danger calls of the Campbell’s. To find out, they made recordings of Campbell’s monkey calls, and edited some of them—adding or removing the oo suffix. Then, they took the recordings into the jungle and played them in the vicinity of Diana monkeys and watched to see how they responded.The team found that the Diana monkeys reacted to the Campbell’s monkey calls in a manner almost identical to other Campbell’s monkeys—they grew much more agitated when hearing the krak call then when hearing the krak—oo call, and remained on alert longer, which the team claims proves that the Diana monkeys were able to differentiate between the two and to respond accordingly. Explore further Citation: Some monkeys can understand danger calls made by different monkey species (2015, April 29) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-04-monkeys-danger-monkey-species.html More information: Suffixation influences receivers’ behaviour in non-human primates, Proceedings of the Royal Society B, Published 29 April 2015. DOI: 10.1098/rspb.2015.0265AbstractCompared to humans, non-human primates have very little control over their vocal production. Nonetheless, some primates produce various call combinations, which may partially offset their lack of acoustic flexibility. A relevant example is male Campbell’s monkeys (Cercopithecus campbelli), which give one call type (‘Krak’) to leopards, while the suffixed version of the same call stem (‘Krak-oo’) is given to unspecific danger. To test whether recipients attend to this suffixation pattern, we carried out a playback experiment in which we broadcast naturally and artificially modified suffixed and unsuffixed ‘Krak’ calls of male Campbell’s monkeys to 42 wild groups of Diana monkeys (Cercopithecus diana diana). The two species form mixed-species groups and respond to each other’s vocalizations. We analysed the vocal response of male and female Diana monkeys and overall found significantly stronger vocal responses to unsuffixed (leopard) than suffixed (unspecific danger) calls. Although the acoustic structure of the ‘Krak’ stem of the calls has some additional effects, subject responses were mainly determined by the presence or the absence of the suffix. This study indicates that suffixation is an evolved function in primate communication in contexts where adaptive responses are particularly important. (Phys.org)—A team of researchers with members from France, Ivory Coast, Switzerland and the U.K. has found that some monkeys of one species are able to listen in and respond to communications made by monkeys of another species. In their paper published in Proceedings of the Royal Society B, the researchers describe a field study they conducted with two monkey species and what they learned from it.center_img Journal information: Proceedings of the Royal Society B Credit: cordis.europa.eu © 2015 Phys.org Linguistic methods uncover sophisticated meanings, monkey dialectslast_img read more

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Dark matter hiding in stars may cause observable oscillations

first_imgIn previous research on dark matter stars, it has often been assumed that stars accreting dark matter will continue to grow until they become so dense that they collapse into black holes. However, in the new study the physicists’ simulations showed that these stars actually appear to be stable and do not become black holes. Their stability arises from a self-regulatory mechanism called “gravitational cooling” in which the stars eject mass to slow down and stop their growth before they approach the critical Chandrasekhar limit, the point at which they collapse into black holes. As the scientists explain, the finding that dark matter stars are stable makes a surprising contribution to the research in this area.”Although it was known for some time that dark matter can be accreted by stars and form dark matter cores at their center, those studies were all phenomenological,” Brito said. “In addition, basically all these studies suggested that, if enough dark matter is accreted by a star, it will eventually trigger gravitational collapse and a black hole would form, eventually eating all the star.”We set about checking these claims, using a rigorous fully relativistic framework, i.e., solving the full Einstein’s equations. This is important if we want to understand how the dark matter core behaves for large densities. Well, it turns out that our results show that black hole formation can, in principle, be avoided by ejecting excessive mass: the dark matter core starts ‘repelling’ itself when it is too massive and compact, and is unable to grow past a certain threshold. This is, as far as we know, something that was ignored in previous works. “The above results are quite generic. Because any self-gravitating massive bosonic field can form compact structures, any such putative dark matter component would lead to the kind of effects we discuss in our paper. In this sense it proposes another way to search for these kinds of particles that can be complementary to observations coming from cosmology, for example. Given the lack of information that we have about the nature of dark matter, we think that it might be worth the effort to further develop this subject.”The scientists hope that the results here may help guide future research by suggesting where to look for dark matter and what methods to use to detect it.”We don’t know much about dark matter,” Brito said. “The only thing we do know is that all kinds of matter (be it regular matter or dark, invisible matter) fall in the same way in gravitational fields. This is Einstein’s equivalence principle in action. Thus, dark matter also falls in the usual way. It seems therefore appropriate to look for effects of dark matter in regions where gravity is strong, like neutron stars, black holes, etc. We are now trying to understand how dark matter behaves generically in regions of strong gravity.”At this precise moment, we are working on a long version of this letter. We want to understand in depth how the dark matter core grows for different kind of scenarios, and how viscosity in the star’s material affects the development of the accretion process.” (Phys.org)—Dark matter has never been seen directly, but scientists know that something massive is out there due to its gravitational effects on visible matter. One explanation for how such a large amount of mass appears to be right in front of our eyes yet completely invisible by conventional means is that the dark matter is hiding in the centers of stars. This sequence shows snapshots of a star’s density when two dark matter cores collide, where the x-axis is the plane of collision (only half the space is shown, but the remaining space can be obtained by symmetry). Although the final configuration is more compact and massive than the original, the star does not collapse into a black hole because it ejects some of its mass, slowing down its growth so that it remains stable. Credit: Brito, et al. ©2015 American Physical Society Dark matter guides growth of supermassive black holes In a new study, physicists have investigated the possibility that large amounts of hidden mass inside stars might be composed of extremely lightweight hypothetical particles called axions, which are a primary dark matter candidate. The scientists, Richard Brito at the University of Lisbon in Portugal; Vitor Cardoso at the University of Lisbon and the Perimeter Institute for Theoretical Physics in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada; and Hirotada Okawa at Kyoto University and Waseda University, both in Japan, have published their paper on dark matter in stars in a recent issue of Physical Review Letters.”Our work studies how dark matter piles up inside stars if the dark matter is composed of massive bosonic particles (axions are an example of such particles),” Brito told Phys.org. “Our results show that dark matter accretion by stars does not lead to gravitational collapse; instead it may give rise to characteristic vibrations in stars.” The researchers theoretically showed that, if numerous axions were to pile up inside normal stars, then the dark matter core would oscillate. The oscillating core would in turn cause the star’s fluid to oscillate in tune with it at a specific frequency related to the star’s mass, or at multiples of this frequency. For a typical axion mass, the oscillating stars would emit microwave radiation and might have observable effects.”What oscillates is the fluid density and its pressure, but it’s probably correct as well to say that the entire star is oscillating,” Brito explained. “These are like sound waves propagating through the fluid, with a very specific frequency. Oscillations of this kind could, for example, lead to variations in the luminosity or in the temperature of the star, and these are quantities that we can measure directly.”In fact, there is already a whole branch of physics called asteroseismology, which studies the internal structure of stars by observing their oscillation modes. This is very much like the way scientists study the internal structure of the Earth by looking at seismic waves. It is possible that the oscillations of a star driven by a dark matter core could also be observed using similar methods. Given the very specific frequencies at which these stars would vibrate, this could be a smoking gun for the presence of dark matter. Asteroseismology is still in its infancy but it will, almost certainly, become a very precise way of observing stars in the future.” © 2015 Phys.org More information: Richard Brito, Vitor Cardoso, and Hirotada Okawa. “Accretion of dark matter by stars.” Physical Review Letters. DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.115.111301, Also at arXiv:1508.04773 [gr-qc] Citation: Dark matter hiding in stars may cause observable oscillations (2015, September 18) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2015-09-dark-stars-oscillations.html Explore further Journal information: Physical Review Letters This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only.last_img read more

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An idea for allowing the human eye to observe an instance of

first_imgScheme of the proposal for detecting entanglement with the human eye. Credit: arXiv:1602.01907 [quant-ph] Explore further More information: What does it take to see entanglement? arXiv:1602.01907 [quant-ph] arxiv.org/abs/1602.01907AbstractTremendous progress has been realized in quantum optics for engineering and detecting the quantum properties of light. Today, photon pairs are routinely created in entangled states. Entanglement is revealed using single-photon detectors in which a single photon triggers an avalanche current. The resulting signal is then processed and stored in a computer. Here, we propose an approach to get rid of all the electronic devices between the photons and the experimentalist i.e. to use the experimentalist’s eye to detect entanglement. We show in particular, that the micro entanglement that is produced by sending a single photon into a beam-splitter can be detected with the eye using the magnifying glass of a displacement in phase space. The feasibility study convincingly demonstrates the possibility to realize the first experiment where entanglement is observed with the eye.via TechnologyReview This document is subject to copyright. Apart from any fair dealing for the purpose of private study or research, no part may be reproduced without the written permission. The content is provided for information purposes only. Physicists have learned how to restore the entanglement of ‘untangled’ quantum light Journal information: arXivcenter_img © 2016 Phys.org Entanglement, is of course, where two quantum particles are intrinsically linked to the extent that they actually share the same existence, even though they can be separated and moved apart. The idea was first proposed nearly a century ago, and it has not only been proven, but researchers routinely cause it to occur, but, to date, not one single person has every actually seen it happen—they only know it happens by conducting a series of experiments. It is not clear if anyone has ever actually tried to see it happen, but in this new effort, the research trio claim to have found a way to make it happen—if only someone else will carry out the experiment on a willing volunteer.The idea involves using a beam splitter and two beans of light—an initial beam of coherent photons fired at the beam splitter and a secondary beam of coherent photons that interferes with the photons in the first beam causing a change of phase, forcing the light to be reflected rather than transmitted. In such a scenario, the secondary beam would not need to be as intense as the first, and could in fact be just a single coherent photon—if it were entangled, it could be used to allow a person to see the more powerful beam while still preserving the entanglement of the original photon.The researchers suggest the technology to carry out such an experiment exists today, but also acknowledge that it would take a special person to volunteer for such an assignment because to prove that they had seen entanglement taking place would involve shooting a large number of photons in series, into a person’s eye, whereby the resolute volunteer would announce whether they had seen the light on the order of thousands of times. Citation: An idea for allowing the human eye to observe an instance of entanglement (2016, February 18) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2016-02-idea-human-eye-instance-entanglement.html (Phys.org)—A trio of physicists in Europe has come up with an idea that they believe would allow a person to actually witness entanglement. Valentina Caprara Vivoli, with the University of Geneva, Pavel Sekatski, with the University of Innsbruck and Nicolas Sangouard, with the University of Basel, have together written a paper describing a scenario where a human subject would be able to witness an instance of entanglement—they have uploaded it to the arXiv server for review by others.last_img read more

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What Would a Dog Do on Mars

first_imgRecently, NASA released colorful, dreamy illustrations depicting an imagined future in which human beings have made it to other worlds. A curly-haired astronaut floats inside a lunar space station, with the crater-pocked moon behind her. A lunar explorer steadies a camera on a tripod to photograph Earth in the distance. And an astronaut stands on the dunes of Mars with her hands in the pockets of her spacesuit, a dog at her side. But dogs have been to space. In the 1950s and 1960s, the Soviet Union strapped dogs into capsules and launched them into the sky. The canines were not trusty space sidekicks, but research subjects, strays collected from city streets to test launch systems before humans themselves did. (The United States conducted similar tests, with several species of monkeys.) Read the whole story: The Atlantic Wait, a dog?center_img To be clear, NASA’s ambitious plans for missions to the moon and Mars do not include dogs. (At least, none that the public knows about. If you’re a member of a top-secret program to groom doggonauts, please contact me.) The agency does want to send humans there, sometime in the 2030s.last_img read more

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Democracy net tax crisis get Hungarians to protest

first_imgIt was by far the largest protest since his center-right government took power in 2010 and pursued moves to redefine many walks of life, drawing accusations of creeping authoritarianism, although it was re-elected by a landslide this year. Orban’s government has imposed special taxes on the banking, retail, energy and telecommunications sectors to keep the budget deficit in check, jeopardizing profits in some parts of the economy and unnerving international investors. The internet data levy idea was first floated in the 2015 tax code submitted to the Central European country’s parliament last week, triggering objections from internet service providers and users who felt it was anti-democratic. The crowd, which was organized by a Facebook-based social network and appeared to draw mostly well-heeled professionals, marched through central Budapest demanding the repeal of the planned tax and the ouster of Orban. Many protesters held up makeshift signs that read ‘ERROR!’ and ‘How many times do you want to skin us?’ Zsolt Varady, an internet entrepreneur and founder of a now-defunct Hungarian social network iwiw.hu, told the crowd that the tax threatened to undermine internet freedoms. ‘Between 2006 and 2006 iwiw motivated many people to get an internet subscription,’ Varady said. ‘People were willing to pay for the service because they knew, saw and felt that their lives were becoming better… The internet tax threatens the further growth of the Internet as well as freedom of information.’ Tax reduced after first protest. The government had planned to tax internet data transfers at a rate of 150 forints per gigabyte. After analysts calculated this would total more than the sector’s annual revenue and an initial protest drew thousands on Sunday, Fidesz submitted a bill that capped the tax at 700 forints per month for individuals and 5,000 forints for companies. That did not placate Tuesday’s protesters. ‘I am a student, my parents are not well off, neither am I, so I work hard,’ said Ildiko Pirk, a 22-year-old studying nursing. ‘I doubt the internet companies won’t build this tax into their prices. And I have a computer, a smartphone, as does my mother and my four siblings… That adds up.’ She said the internet was vital for her to get the books she needs for her studies but also to read unbiased news that is not under the control of Hungary’s ruling political elite. She and other protesters said the government’s other moves also bothered them, such as a perceived mismanagement of the economy and a recent dispute with the United States over alleged corruption of Hungarian public officials. The Orban government denied any anti-democratic agenda, saying it aimed only to get all economic sectors to share the tax burden and was tapping into a trend of telecommunications shifting away from already-taxed telephony and text messages.last_img read more

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Promotion of equilibrium in society the need of the hour

first_imgKolkata: The biggest challenge before India is its unequal development of the country and the only way it can be addressed is by promoting equilibrium in society, Piyush Goyal, Union minister for Railways, Coal, Finance & Corporate Affairs, said on Monday.”Mutual trust and consensus is a key area for ensuring success of GST in a federal structure like India”, he said.Speaking at an exclusive interactive session organised by the Indian Chamber of Commerce at a city hotel, Goyal elaborated on the “Vision for 2022” for India and the role that all sections of the society, including industry and industry associations, can play in fructifying the objective of attaining development for all. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedGoyal felt that the government and industry can join hands to effectively reach out to the developmental needs of the bottom of the pyramid through meaningful and well strategised CSR initiatives, in particular for the 115 identified aspirational districts of India.He mentioned that though India has made rapid strides in many sectors post-independence, significant room for progress still remains.He justified the fact that one single uniform GST tax rate is not tenable for India, as it would nullify the very concept of progressive taxation and the tenets of equitable distribution of income. Also Read – Naihati: 10 councillors return to TMC from BJPFocussing on the rapid development witnessed in India over the past 4 years of the Modi regime, Goyal termed the single most important factor of change as the “change in mindset,” which has led to monumental changes in infrastructure, connectivity, macro economy and human capital development in the country, to name a few.He spoke on the important changes being brought about in energy efficiency, distribution and transmission in the power sector in India. He spoke of the government’s commitment to provide rural electrification and ensure availability of LPG and subsequently solar-powered cookers for all households in the country, including the remotest corners.Goyal reiterated that augmented MSP for farm produce would not impact the fiscal deficit, as defaults on loans would have directly led to increased NPAs and affected billions of people engaged in farming in the country.Shashwat Goenka, president, Indian Chamber of Commerce, gave the welcome address, calling Goyal a “thought provoking and dynamic leader”.Rudra Chatterjee, senior vice-president, Indian Chamber of Commerce, offered the formal vote of thanks.last_img read more

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Teenage night owls at high obesity risk

first_imgIf your teenage kid loves to spend night time with gadgets, ask him or her to reduce this habit as this may make him fat in just five years’ time.According to research, teenagers and adults who go to bed late on weeknights are more likely to gain weight than their peers who hit the hay earlier.“The results highlight adolescent bed times, not just total sleep time, as a potential target for weight management during the transition to adulthood,” said Lauren Asarnow, lead author and doctoral student in University of California-Berkeley. Also Read – ‘Playing Jojo was emotionally exhausting’For this, the researchers analysed data from a nationally representative cohort of more than 3,300 youths and adults. They found that for every hour of sleep they lost, they gained 2.1 points on the body mass index (BMI). This gain occurred roughly over a five-year period.The results show that many teenagers do not get the recommended nine hours sleep a night and report having trouble staying awake at school.The human circadian rhythm, which regulates physiological and metabolic functions, typically shifts to a later sleep cycle at the onset of puberty.The results suggest that adolescents who go to bed earlier will “set their weight on a healthier course as they emerge into adulthood”, Asarnow added. The paper appeared in the journal Sleep.last_img read more

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People who care for others may live longer

first_imgOlder people who help and support others may live longer than those who do not, a new study has claimed.Researchers, including those from Max Planck Institute for Human Development in Germany, conducted survival analyses of over 500 people aged between 70 and 103 years, drawing on data collected between 1990 and 2009.The researchers compared grandparents who provided occasional childcare with those who did not, as well as with older adults who did not have children or grandchildren but who provided care for others in their social network. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe results of their analyses show that this kind of care-giving can have a positive effect on the mortality of the carers.Half of the grandparents who took care of their grandchildren were still alive about ten years after the first interview in 1990.The same applied to participants who did not have grandchildren, but who supported their children – for example, by helping with housework. In contrast, about half of those who did not help others died within five years. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe researchers were also able to show that this positive effect of care-giving on mortality was not limited to help and care-giving within the family. The data analysis showed that childless older adults who provided others with emotional support, for example, also benefited.Half of these helpers lived for another seven years, whereas non-helpers on average lived for only another four years. “But helping should not be misunderstood as a panacea for a longer life,” said Ralph Hertwig from Max Planck Institute for Human Development.“A moderate level of care-giving involvement does seem to have positive effects on health. But previous studies have shown that more intense involvement causes stress, which has negative effects on physical and mental health,” said Hertwig.As it is not customary for grandparents in Germany and Switzerland to take custodial care of their grandchildren, primary and custodial caregivers were not included in the analyses. Researchers think that prosocial behaviour was originally rooted in the family.“It seems plausible that the development of parent’s and grandparent’s prosocial behaviour toward their kin left its imprint on the human body in terms of a neural and hormonal system that subsequently laid the foundation for the evolution of cooperation and altruistic behaviour towards non-kin,” said Sonja Hilbrand from the University of Basel in Switzerland.The study was published in the journal Evolution and Human Behaviour.last_img read more

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IISWBM setting new benchmarks in management

first_imgEstablished in April 1953, Indian Institute of Social Welfare and Business Management (IISWBM), the first management institute in India, still stands out to be one of the most reputed and acknowledged management institutions of the country. Enlightened Indians like Pt Jawaharlal Nehru, Dr Bidhan Chandra Roy, the then Chief Minister of West Bengal and Prof DK Sanyal set up the institution keeping a unique dimension in mind. With social welfare programmes and management courses under the same roof, this institute has earned numerous accolades to its name. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfOver the decades, IISWBM has successfully kept its intellectual tradition alive by recruiting imminent faculty members, preserving the learning environment, nurturing intellectual minds, and maintaining infrastructure facilities. With sixty four years into management, its journey has been studded with glorious achievements. Being one of the highest ranking B-schools since its inception, the institute might soon get upgraded to a University and with the new campus coming up in the satellite city of Kolkata (Newtown), the institute has plans to start some academic programmes there by 2019. Involved in research and consultancy work, several faculty members have won many prestigious awards and the Institute itself boasts of alumni in various prestigious organisations both in India and abroad. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveProf (Dr) Amitava Sarkar, the Director of IISWBM, who has long been associated with the institute, opens up about their success story, uniqueness and big plans ahead.What separates IISWBM from other management institutes?This is the first management and social welfare institute that started in India. We have our heritage. When we started, the concept of bringing social welfare programs and business management courses together was one of a kind; a concept alien to many. After all, social welfare programs in order to survive, need to be managed well and similarly, if management studies are devoid of any ties to social welfare, it will fail. I don’t think there are institutions where these two fields are together under the same roof and even if there are such institutions, they definitely did not start back at the time we did. From early 1950s onward, we have always tried to remain relevant, keeping in tune with upcoming demands. What should be done so that more people get access to education?I believe we have quite a number of good institutions offering programmes in various fields. And the lack of access that we have faced a couple of decades back has gone down to a great extent. We have not been able to match up with the demands in certain fields with openings in higher education institutions. I don’t want to blame the planners or the government but this happens because it is a fast changing world. We don’t know which particular field is going to occupy the centre stage two years down the line or what particular demands are going to come up and we are always a couple of steps behind in supplying the required academic programmes and institutions. That’s where the mismatch happens. This is mainly due to fast changes and our inability to forecast. Which are some of the offbeat courses that are offered in your institution?Apart from the flagship programs like Master of Business Administration, Master of Human Resource Management, the Institute also conducts full-time programmes in affiliation with the University of Calcutta in Sports Management, Media Management, and Retail Management among others. We offer programmes in fire safety management as well. We have also condensed our three years MBA evening program into 2 years and the response has been amazing. We are the first institution to start with a two -year full time MBA evening program. In addition, the Institute introduced an M Phil programme since 2014, and plans to commence a PhD programme, affiliated to University of Calcutta to match demands for higher/research studies in management, social welfare and public systems.Our faculty is very actively involved in research and projects. We offer our expertise in number of projects for various government and non-government institutions. We also work very closely with NTPC, Adani and Reliance among others. We are also collaborating with the Reserve Bank of India as they want us to conduct a training program on induction, and mentor their senior as well as junior officers.Is there any new collaboration with a foreign university on its way?I have a different view with regard to collaboration. If we look into collaboration itself carefully, we will see that many foreign institutions are coming here for students and they try to use institutions as agents. But essentially what they do is that Indians and foreign institutions train the students for two terms each and give them a joint certificate. However, there are only a few who can afford it. In my opinion, I would like to collaborate in terms of research, in terms of faculty and students exchange and not in terms of just offering a joint programme. As a matter of fact, the collaboration that I’m talking about in terms of research has always been there. We share ideas, articles and invite each other, which is much more effective. Otherwise collaborations do not serve any real purpose. Probably, there is some flamboyance in collaboration, but if looked into carefully, it doesn’t serve much purpose. What, in your opinion, distinguishes the Indian system of education, from those abroad?I believe that the distinction which we used to face three or four decades back, is not there that much. There’s a usual kind of complaint that comes from the industry that our syllabus/ curriculum is often outdated; the curriculums do not match the industry requirements, particularly in India. But I don’t think that’s totally true. I agree that it used to be like that a few decades ago but not any longer. I ask industry people whether they have actually taken a look at the curriculum and in most cases the answer is ‘no’. 90 per cent of those who criticise blindly our education systems, saying that it is not up to the mark or lagging behind from what are offered abroad, particularly in the West, don’t see them carefully. I know for a fact that there’s no significant difference in the programmes. The question should be about deliverance. They may have better teachers there or better systems of deliverance, or better students who can accept what is taught but we are no less. Yes, there are problems of delivery. Although I agree that it is acute in India, western countries also face this at some level or the other. Look at how eagerly they look for Indian software developers. Given the recent happenings, if all the Indian software developers have to come back, then I don’t know what they will do. So this problem is not unique to India or the developing countries. Lack of funding also leads to several problems. Many colleges can’t afford proper equipment at labs or other means of technology needed for better learning. But it is not that we do not know about these problems. I really hope people start looking beyond the surface level. Tell us about the new campus…We have our new campus coming up in Rajarhat (Newtown). It’s been a year that work has started and the entire foundation piling has already been completed. Situated in the so called academic hub, it will have a 12 storey academic building, separate girls’ and boys’ hostels, and staff quarters. In fact, last week we had a meeting with HIDCO and it was decided that by 2019 it would be at least partially complete so that we start teaching some of the courses there. We would like to do it a bit sequentially. Of course the entire establishment is not going to shift at one go as it is neither desirable nor possible. Our USP is this location.last_img read more

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Drishtikone premiered amidst much fanfare

first_imgDrishtikone, one of the most awaited films from the house of Surinder Films, directed by Kaushik Ganguly, was premiered in Kolkata, amidst much fanfare. The entire cast and crew members including Prosenjit Chatterjee, Rituparna Sengupta, Churni Ganguly, Kaushik Ganguly, Kaushik Sen, Anupam Roy, Rupankar Bagchi, Iman Chakraborty, Paloma were present at the star-studded premiere. National Award Winner, Kaushik Ganguly – one of the most sought-after directors of contemporary cinema, who is instrumental in lending voice to the current issues, exploring the society in a completely different light, defining human relationships and unfolding the various layers that comprise of these relationships – has come up with the story of Drishtikone. Also Read – Add new books to your shelf”I conceived Drishtikone with Prosenjit and Rituparna along with Churni Ganguly, Kaushik Sen and myself in mind. The on-screen chemistry between Prosenjit-Rituparna is unparalleled. The magic created by them is amazing. The entire cast and crew members have put in their best efforts in the making of Drishtikone. It is heartening for us that the trailer and the songs have created a buzz in the market and people are looking forward to watch the film. Drishtikone is one of my dream projects, something which I yearned to present for years. We all are hopeful that Drishtikone, the 48th film of Prosenjit – Rituparna pair will create a milestone in the history of Bengali cinema”, said Kaushik Ganguly. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveIt is a story about a successful lawyer, Mitra (Prosenjit Chatterjee) – who lives a happy and content married life and Sen (Rituparna Sengupta) – who seeks Mitra’s help with a serious and complicated legal case. It is during the whole pursuit of solving the case that the two prime characters of the film get enrolled in a relationship and the definition of their relation keeps evolving throughout the length of the film; a relation which speaks of love that is not quite known to us. It is a different insight into the journeys of friendship and love through various perspectives (Drishtikone). Churni Ganguly is seen as Mitra’s wife and has a very crucial role in the story. Kaushik Ganguly will mesmerise the viewers with his cameo yet again in a very important part in the film as Sen’s brother-in-law. The music for the film has been composed by Anupam Roy which is a chartbuster. Apart from Anupam, the songs are rendered by Iman Chakraborty, Rupankar Bagchi and Paloma.Drishtikone has released in all the major single screens and multiplexes across West Bengal.last_img read more

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Homeless babies at risk of poor health

first_imgBabies born to homeless women are more likely to have poor health and development outcomes, says a study.The findings showed that babies who experienced both pre- and post-natal homelessness and those who experienced homelessness for longer than six months were at a highest risk of negative health outcomes. “These findings back up what we already knew about how the stress of homelessness affects children’s heath,” said Megan Sandel, paediatrician at Children’s HealthWatch, from the Boston Medical Centre (BMC) in the US. “But this helps us determine which children are at greatest risk, and makes the argument that policymakers and providers need to intervene to change the trajectory of a child’s development,” Sandel added.The study, published in Pediatrics, shows that the earlier and the longer a child experiences homelessness may have a larger cumulative toll of poor health and development outcomes.last_img read more

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Agri dept conducts survey to assess damages caused by Fani

first_imgKolkata: State Agriculture department is conducting a survey to ascertain the quantum of damage to paddy cultivation in various districts caused by the cyclone ‘Fani’ that hit the state late Friday night.State Agriculture department has instructed its officials to carry out a detailed survey, to ascertain the loss which paddy farmers faced in the districts immediately the incident happened. Following the instruction from the department, the officials started visiting various villages and examining the paddy fields. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe officials will also examine to ascertain whether the farmers producing other food grains had suffered any such loss. The department may extend financial assistance to the farmers who have incurred loss due to the severe cyclone. The effect of the cyclone in the state was less as it lost the intensity while entering Bengal. The department officials have already started the survey works. They have been visiting all the districts which were hit by the cyclone. After assessing the situation the department officials will submit to the state agriculture minister. The final decision on the financial assistance will be taken after examining the survey report in detail. Also Read – Lightning kills 8, injures 16 in state”The paddy farmers in various districts have lost their crops due to the cyclone. The farmers who are among the worst-hit are from the districts of East Midnapore, East Midnapore, Murshidabad, Birbhum and Nadia. We are considering how they can be compensated after going through the report,” a senior official of the department said. The department is also chalking out an elaborate plan on how to extend financial assistance to the farmers in the cyclone affected districts. The district and the block level officers are carrying out the survey not only to ascertain the loss and also identify the beneficiaries who are entitled to get the compensation. State government introduced various schemes to protect the farmers from incurring any loss caused by such incidents. It may be mentioned that Bengal is the first state in the country to introduce crop insurance scheme, where the beneficiaries will not have to pay any amount as insurance premium in case of any natural disaster.last_img read more

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Garden with musical fountain ups beauty quotient of Lake Kalibari

first_imgKolkata: A garden with a musical fountain has come up on the boulevard situated opposite Lake Kalibari on Southern Avenue in South Kolkata.The Kalibari authorities along with the Kolkata Municipal Corporation have developed the boulevard, with financial assistance from Exide under their CSR project. A beautiful garden has come up on the boulevard which serves as the lungs to the people living in the vicinity. A statue of Haripada Chakraborty, founder of Lake Kalibari, has also been installed. A musical fountain has also been installed, which is operated in the evening. KMC has made special arrangements so that there is constant supply of water, which makes the fountain operational throughout the year. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThere is a pedestrian pathway and a butterfly garden. Huge pots filled with water are kept for birds to drink during the summer. Ornamental benches have been installed so that people can sit and enjoy the serene environment. The garden was inaugurated by Gautam Chatterjee, managing director of Exide, in presence of dignitaries on April 10, 2019. Lake Kalibari is a symbol of communal peace and harmony. Hundreds of people from different religions, cult and faith come to the temple everyday to offer puja and prayer. The construction of a huge new temple is being carried out in full swing at the premises of Lake Kalibari. Murals depicting Bhakti movement and gods and goddesses have been put up on the walls. The Kalibari carries out various social services which include helping people coming from economically challenged backgrounds, irrespective of religion.last_img read more

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Firhad Hakim to inaugurate new office building of NDITA

first_imgKolkata: Firhad Hakim, state minister for Urban Development and Municipal Affairs department, will inaugurate the new office building of Nabadiganta Industrial Township Authority (NDITA) in Sector V on Tuesday. Sujit Bose, Minister of State for Fire and Emergency Services department (Independent charge) will also be present at the function. Since the inception of NDITA 13 years ago, the agency used to function from Unnayan Bhavan, the headquarters of Kolkata Metropolitan Development Authority (KMDA) in Salt Lake which does not come under the jurisdiction of the NDITA. Also Read – Rs 13,000 crore investment to provide 2 lakh jobs: MamataThe new four-storeyed building will have a ground level coffee corner and a permanent exhibition centre where IT products made in Sector V will be showcased. The space will also be used to exhibit the steps of good practices taken by the NDITA including rainwater harvesting, zero waste segregation and the like to create public awareness. The ministers will also inaugurate a pocket park. Pocket parks have become very popular in Western countries and are especially for IT professionals who take a break from their busy work schedules and come for a visit to relax for a bit and enjoy the greenery. They often take light refreshments and interact with their colleagues to lessen the strain and stress they undergo every day. This will be the second pocket park. The first one is extremely popular. The state government has been planning a well-defined traffic management system for Sector V where thousands of people come for work everyday.last_img read more

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Todays food is too sweet

first_imgNew York: Customers find foods in today’s marketplace to be too sweet, researchers that analysed nearly four lakh food reviews said. “This is the first study of this scale to study food choice beyond the artificial constraints of the laboratory. Sweet was the most frequently mentioned taste quality and the reviewers told us that human food is over-sweetened,” said study lead author Danielle Reed from Monell Chemical Senses Center in the US. Also Read – Add new books to your shelfPublished in the journal of Physiology and Behavior, the study examined 393,568 unique food reviews of 67,553 products posted by 256,043 customers over a 10 year period to gain real-world insight into the food choices that people make. To identify words related to taste, texture, odour, spiciness, cost, health and customer service, the researchers used statistical modelling programme and computed the number of reviews that mentioned each of these categories. Also Read – Over 2 hours screen time daily will make your kids impulsiveThe focus on product over-sweetness was striking as almost one per cent of product reviews, regardless of food type, used the phrase “too sweet”. When looking at reviews that referred to sweet taste, the researchers found that over-sweetness was mentioned 25 times more than under-sweetness. The researchers found that sweet taste was mentioned in 11 per cent of product reviews, almost three times more often than bitter.last_img read more

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5 Creative Ways Rulers Kept their Forbidden Romantic Liaisons Secret

first_imgFidelity among noblemen and figures of power throughout history wasn’t exactly considered obligatory. Rulers of European dynasties, heads of the Catholic Church, kings and queens of all sorts ― all have been known for their appetites when it came to grooming multiple lovers.However, the embarrassment of being caught in adultery was still something that wasn’t advised, as leaders were to set an example ― that of a loving husband/spouse and a morally responsible person in general.Fair Rosamund, an imaginary portrait of Rosamund Clifford, the most famous mistress of King Henry II of England, by Dante Gabriel Rossetti.So how did they cope with such double standards?Well, by keeping their love affairs in absolute secrecy, of course. It is amazing to which lengths some of these high-profile lovers were ready to go in order to keep their adultery secret ― from hidden chambers to complex escape routes, they did it all with style.We give you a selection of some of the most notorious and creative solutions when it comes to keeping your affairs in order, so to say.Louis XV’s Flying ChairLet’s start with one of Europe’s most interesting courts when it came to gossip and mischievous behavior. The French Bourbon dynasty was known as one of the most powerful and certainly most influential royal families on the continent. While their political might was undoubtedly great, it was the decadent everyday life of the French monarchs that truly defined their reign.This spawned numerous anecdotes regarding rulers and their mistresses, and so was the case with Louis XIV, who was the king of France from 1715 to 1774.Louis XVIn order to avoid embarrassment, the king was forced to resolve to technical ingenuity, creating one of the world’s first passenger elevators.What was appropriately named a “flying chair” was built as a secret tube intended to transport Louis’ mistresses directly into his private apartment.Designed to resemble a small cabinet, from the inside of which a rope hung was hung. In order to raise or lower the “chair” the occupant would pull the rope, activating a mechanism composed of a number of counterweights and pulleys.Louis employed one of his favorite machinists, Blaise-Henri Arnoult, to make him the flying chair and the design was reportedly very effective, enabling the King to enter the elevator from his balcony.Marie Antoinette’s Petit TrianonAs time went by, Versailles was becoming the center of all court life in France. No wonder that it was here that Marie Antoinette chose one of its many chateaus to use as her refuge ―  the Petit Trianon.Petit TrianonInitially built as a retreat for King Louis XV and his mistress, Madame de Pompadour, it was adopted for the same reason by the infamous wife of Louis XVI.Petit Trianon, Versailles. Photo by Kallgan CC BY-SA 3.0Drawing inspiration from English gardens of the time, the Petit Trianon included a pond and an artificial cave, all adding to the romantic image, which she sure knew how to exploit when it came to her more intimate guests.Aerial view of the gardens of the Petit Trianon. The Petit Trianon is in the center, the Temple de l’Amour is behind, the Pavillon Français is in front in the same perspective. Photo by ToucanWings CC BY-SA 3.0The grotto itself primarily serves as a bridge on the small lake, but it is also a perfect place for secret meetings ― ones where a kiss could easily go unnoticed by the watchful eyes of her husband’s informers, who on the other hand was accused of being the only French monarch in history never to have had an extramarital affair.Love Cupboard of  George IVPresumably, everyone is familiar with the “secret passage behind a bookshelf” trick. You know, the one that is activated by pulling a particular book, which then causes the bookshelf to move, revealing a hidden hallway.King George IV of EnglandWell, George IV, the King of England from 1820 to 1830, had one just like that in his occasional residence at Chatsworth House.The passage behind the bookshelf connected his room with the room of Maria Fitzherbert, his forbidden sweetheart who also resided in the mansion.Chatsworth House front view. This Old European style house is a famous place for tourism located in the Peak District, England.She would receive her secret lover through a cupboard which concealed the tunnel.Unfortunately for them, their relationship was forbidden due to Fitzherbert being a Catholic in a time when English royalty was strictly Protestant and prohibited from being intimate with followers of the Catholic faith.A George III gilt and bronze library bookcase, c. 1800. Photo by Sotheby’sThe two decided to secretly elope. After years of hardships, their marriage was recognized as official when George become king, and thus head of the Church of England.Charles II and the Tunnel of LoveWhile George IV was thinking of ways to come to his one true love despite social boundaries, his 17th century predecessor, Charles II, was just looking for ways to have some common people’s fun, without being pestered by an entourage of servants, advisors, and courtiers.King Charles II of EnglandSo he devised a secret passage as well ― one that allegedly led from St. James’s Palace in Pall Mall to a winery located just around the corner in St. James Street.The famous and ancient winery Berry Bros and Rudd has stood for centuries, and holds beneath it an intricate network of cellars and tunnels.Berry Bros. & Rudd. Photo by Elisa.rolle CC BY-SA 4.0Rumor has it that King Charles II often visited the winery through one such tunnel, where he frequently used the services of a brothel which functioned as part of the establishment. Even though this rumor is not confirmed, it certainly sounds like something that the “Merry Monarch Charles II” would take part in.Pope Alexander VI Secret PassageRodrigo de Borgia, who became Pope Alexander VI in 1492 ― the same year Christopher Columbus discovered the New World ― is perhaps the most infamous of all the leaders of the Roman-Catholic Church.Pope Alexander VI.If having mistresses wasn’t advisable for kings and queens of Europe, it was certainly prohibited for religious figures of such high profile.However Popes, as other persons of great power and influence, were at the time best known for their intrigues.Pope Alexander had a taste for beautiful women, first developing a relationship with Vannozza dei Cattanei, with whom he had four children.Vannozza dei Cattanei.Despite the social stigma, Alexander VI acknowledged his children, even though they were born outside of wedlock, which was unimaginable at the time for a person with such a high position within the Church.The Passetto in its original context – in the background, the rear side of Palazzo Rusticucci-Accoramboni seen from Vicolo del Farinone, before the demolition of the neighborhood (c. 1930).Afterward, the Pope began to nurture an affair with Giulia Farnese, who was a wife of an influential nobleman from the Orsini family. Needless to say, this was controversial as well.In order to escape detection from Vatican’s evesdroppers, the Pope adopted a secret route, originally built in 1277 to enable swift escape for the incumbent Pope in times of danger, to serve as his personal hidden love-path.Rome, Italy – October 31, 2016: Wall of Passetto di Borgo elevated passage between Vatican City and Castel Sant’Angelo in Rome. It wall was erected in 1277 by Pope Nicholas III.It is a 2,600-feet-long narrow passage leading from the Vatican City into Sant’Angelo Castle, the traditional Papal stronghold intended to serve as a last stand in case of an attack on Rome.In times of peace, this was the route used by Giulia Farnese, also known as “The Bride of Christ” among the Roman gossip girls of the time. As she and the Pope were its most frequent users, the route too gained a nickname ― Passetto di Borgo.Read another story from us:  The King who Placed his Deceased Wife on the ThroneHowever, when Charles VIII of France invaded Italy and subsequently the Papal States and Rome in 1495, Pope Alexander VI was glad that his love path had indeed served its initial purpose as he sought refuge in the impenetrable fortress of Sant’Angelo.Nikola Budanovic is a freelance journalist who has worked for various media outlets such as Vice, War History Online, The Vintage News, and Taste of Cinema. His main areas of interest are history, particularly military history, literature and film.last_img read more

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Hardens Style Isnt Sustainable

first_imgGuests:Eddie House – FS1 NBA analyst and NBA Champion; Greg Cosell – NFL Films Senior Producer; Greg Jennings – FS1 NFL Analyst and Super Bowl champ; Rob Parker – FS1 Analyst and Patriots Hater Harden’s style isn’t sustainableJames Harden racked up 61 against the Knicks in the Garden last night, and has been on a record setting regular season scoring binge, but Colin still isn’t buying into the hype like fans and the NBA media.Harden is unquestionably a gifted scorer, but his entire game is based on one-on-one isolation and his huge statlines during his record-setting stretch have mostly come against NBA bottom feeders. We’ve seen Harden do this before, but disappear come playoff time when the games actually matter. It won’t be any different this time around.“This isn’t sustainable… His usage rate is No. 1 in the NBA by a mile, No. 2 all time. Of the Top 8 usage rates in NBA history, 0 have won a playoff series.” – Colin Also:– Brady gets teammates to buy-in like Tony Robbins– Goff has Brady traits– Antonio Brown isn’t worth the cap hitlast_img read more

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Tools Technology and Retail Options that Make Starting Up Today a Cinch

first_img Register Now » In-office design capabilities: Not that many years ago, but before we were born, there was an entire typesetting industry that charged significant amounts of money to make your brochures, contracts, order forms. If you wanted to tackle this yourself, you could pick up some Letraset letter sheets. They provided letters in various fonts and sizes and you would draw lines with a non-repro blue pencil and line up the right letter in the right spot for every single letter. And get them all straight. Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own. Related: 3 Tips to a Speedy Launch Related: Should You Create Your Business Plan on Pinterest? Connections: With LinkedIn, Twitter etc., you have so many ways to reach out to people who can help you or just understand what you’re going through. On a Friday afternoon when you’re looking at another long weekend working, mention it on Facebook and get instant sympathy — or instant encouragement. You can build relationships with people you may never meet. And you can certainly grow your business beyond what was possible only a generation ago.So when your parents or grandparents — or anyone else from one or two generations back — starts telling you how lucky you are, just agree. They’re right.What recent innovations have you used in starting your company? Let us know in the comments section. Free communications tools: Want to get a proposal to a client in NYC when you’re in Detroit? No biggie. Email it to him. Years ago, businesses had one option: the Post Office. Fed-Ex was a great leap forward. Fax machines were once cutting edge. Growing a business sometimes requires thinking outside the box. Expert insight: Want to understand something better? There’s a blog for that. Have insights you’d like to share? Write a blog post for that. Books took a year or more to get published, so the only current information could be found in magazines and newspapers. Now, just go online and find not just answers but lots of answers.center_img 4 min read Information: Years ago, journalists had a secret weapon: in-house reference libraries where librarians would look up facts. Of course, it would take a while and the info might be limited, but it helped. When 9/11 happened, journalists all over the world could immediately access everything they might want to know about the twin towers — age, height, number of stories and photos, just by using the Internet. As an entrepreneur, if you want to explore your competitors, you don’t have to call them pretending to be a potential customer, you can just visit their websites and get product info, prices and sometimes even customer lists. Young entrepreneurs have it easy. Twenty or even just ten years ago, the infrastructure to support startups the way it can now simply didn’t exist. Just this week, the New York Times published a front-page story about Amazon’s massive cloud-computing footprint. Just think, technology startups that didn’t have their own servers would need to lay out many thousands of dollars just to buy a single server — and that’s not even counting the upkeep and management of the equipment.Let’s do a little time travel and consider what else we take for granted that our parents and grandparents didn’t have when they were starting up. Office-supply superstores: When you wanted to pick up a gross of pens or seventeen bulletin boards, you frequented the small, local office supply store and paid a premium price, or tried to find a wholesale office supply company that would be willing to deal with your small orders. Costs were high either way and nothing was available immediately. Today we walk into OfficeMax or Staples and grab whatever we want, including large plastic barrels of peanut-butter filled pretzels! How good is that? Free Webinar | Sept. 9: The Entrepreneur’s Playbook for Going Global Now, thanks to innovators like the late Steve Jobs, our computers can rock out the basics in no time. Though, it’s still smart to hire a professional for anything fancy. Related: How to Know When to Start Your Own Business (Infographic) August 30, 2012last_img read more

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