Japan scientists can 'read' dreams


Scientists in Japan said they had found a way to "read" people's dreams, using MRI scanners to unlock some of the secrets of the unconscious mind.

Researchers have managed what they said was "the world's first decoding" of night-time visions, the subject of centuries of speculation that have captivated humanity since ancient times.

In the study, published in the journal Science, scientists at the ATR Computational Neuroscience Laboratories, in Kyoto, western Japan, used magnetic resonance imaging (MRI) scans to locate exactly which part of the brain was active during the first moments of sleep.

They then woke up the dreamer and asked him or her what images they had seen, a process that was repeated 200 times.

These answers were compared with the brain maps that had been produced by the MRI scanner.

Researchers were then able to predict what images the volunteers had seen with a 60 percent accuracy rate, rising to more than 70 percent with around 15 specific items including men, words and books, they said.

"We have concluded that we successfully decoded some kinds of dreams with a distinctively high success rate," said Yukiyasu Kamitani, a senior researcher at the laboratories and head of the study team.

"I believe it was a key step towards reading dreams more precisely," Kamitani told AFP.


AFP, photo by adam_erlebacher

Pope sacked Church official for selling annulments PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 06 November 2014 15:28



Pope Francis revealed Wednesday that he had sacked a church court official who had been caught offering to facilitate marriage annulments for cash.

The shock revelation came in candid remarks to students attending a course at the Roman Rota tribunal, the equivalent of the Supreme Court for canon law, the body of Church rules.

Telling his audience that he wanted decisions on annulments to be easier, quicker and cheaper to obtain for ordinary people, the pontiff made it clear he regards the current system as deeply flawed.

"We have to be very careful that the procedure does not become a kind of business - and I am not talking about something we know nothing about," the 78-year-old pope said.

"There have been public scandals. Some time ago, I had to dismiss from a tribunal someone who was saying 'for 10,000 dollars I will do both the civil and the ecclesiastical procedure'."

Francis did not provide any further details of the episode but a Vatican spokesman told AFP he understood the pontiff to have been referring to an episode which occurred prior to him becoming pope last year.

The conditions under which a marriage can be annulled -- effectively declared to have never existed -- have been a vexed issue for the Church for centuries.

Most notably, the question triggered the 16th Century clash with King Henry VIII that led to the English reformation and the creation of the Church of England.



Last Updated on Thursday, 06 November 2014 15:35
140-million-year-old dinosaur tooth found in Malaysia PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 13 November 2014 22:47


A dinosaur tooth found in Malaysia is at least 140 million years old and belongs to a new species within the "bird-hipped" Ornithischian order, researchers said Thursday.

While still unsure of the exact species of dinosaur, lead researcher Masatoshi Sone from the University of Malaya said the discovery means "it is plausible that large dinosaur fossil deposits still remain in Malaysia".

"We started the programme to look for dinosaur fossils two years ago. We are very excited to have found the tooth of the dinosaurian order called Ornithischian in central Pahang state" last year, he said.

Researchers from Japan's Waseda University and Kumamoto University also took part in the project.

Ornithischian, or "bird-hipped", is a major group comprised of herbivous dinosaurs such as triceratops.

The dinosaur would have been about as big as a horse, Sone said.



Last Updated on Thursday, 13 November 2014 22:50
Neighbors use £500,000 in right-of-way legitimate wrangle over sloppy dump simply a couple of feet wide that differentiates their property PDF Print E-mail
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Monday, 17 November 2014 20:59



Two affluent couples have used £500,000 on legal advisors quarreling over who possesses 'a couple of feet' of sloppy jettison between their homes.


The warring gatherings live in Cheshire's 'brilliant triangle' close Wilmslow, and number Sir Alex Ferguson and various Premier League and cleanser stars as close neighbors.


Their debate is over a 'slender strip' of seepage trench, running nearby a harness way which isolates their broad properties, and whether one couple can driver over it.businessman, Richard Gilks, and his wife, Heidi, demand they have a right to drive vehicles over the trench and down the track alongside their five-section of land property in Mobberley, called Fiveacres.


However their neighbors, Adrian Hodgson, 75, and his wife Joanne, 63, from White Peak Farm, are unyielding their neighbors are 'contravening the law' and the alpacas and wallabies they breed there are spooked by the activity.


Judges have communicated their disappointment that the two gatherings have neglected to unravel the question after years of lines and dismissed the £500,000 cost in this way.


In the most recent of various legitimate conflicts the Hodgsons have asked London's Appeal Court to administer whether the Gilks have a lawful right to roll over it, asserting they don't possess the entire of the 'hotly questioned' trench.


Last Updated on Monday, 17 November 2014 21:02
Bell needs forceful reaction by England PDF Print E-mail
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Monday, 17 November 2014 21:06



England landed in Sri Lanka yesterday.

It was drizzling. It much of the time rains in Colombo at this point of year. Seven one-day internationals are planned for this visit, considered to be critical if for England's group holding before the World Cup, yet the explanation behind the extreme number might likewise be joined with a suspicion that few may be deficient.

On entry, the squad of 15 just about to a man took to the exercise center, as is the path with the advanced cricketer. In the event that the occasional storm endures in the south-west when the true business begins, their holding may be carried out there – and without a doubt on an arrangement of machine amusements.


Last Updated on Monday, 17 November 2014 21:14
Scientists sound alarm over ocean acidification PDF Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 08 October 2014 20:41



Ocean acidification has risen by a quarter since pre-industrial times as a result of rising carbon emissions, casting a shadow over the seas as a future source of food, scientists warned on Wednesday.

In the past two centuries, the sea's acidity level has risen 26 percent, mirroring the proportion of carbon dioxide it absorbs from the air, they said in a report to the UN Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) meeting in South Korea.

Rising acidity will have damaging consequences for shellfish, corals and other calcium-making organisms which play a vital part in the food web, they said.

"It is now nearly inevitable that within 50 to 100 years, continued anthropogenic [man-made] carbon dioxide emissions will further increase ocean acidity to levels that will have widespread impacts... on marine organisms and ecosystems and the goods and services they provide," they said.

Acidification may already be affecting shellfish farms in the northwestern United States, they said.



Last Updated on Wednesday, 08 October 2014 20:45
London named Best City for Culture PDF Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 22 October 2014 15:30



London was the huge champ as Leading Culture Destinations reported the champs of its inaugural yearly recompenses.

The capital was named as Best City for Culture, and the Tate Modern gathered three recompenses, Leading Culture Destination 2014, and for Exhibitions & Programming, and Digital Experience.

It was the first and final worldwide recompenses to commend the best not-for-benefit visual expressions establishments around the world.cultural foundations in urban areas as far and wide as Paris, New York, Miami, Shanghai, Oslo, Berlin and Mexico City, were among those contending to win nine grants at the occasion, held at Jumeirah Carlton Tower, London.


Last Updated on Sunday, 26 October 2014 19:35
'Miracle' Chinese panda triplets celebrate 100-day milestone PDF Print E-mail
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Thursday, 06 November 2014 14:39



A set of panda triplets, the world's only known surviving trio, celebrated reaching their 100-day milestone in a Chinese zoo Wednesday as the public were allowed to visit them for the first time.

Their births at the end of July were hailed as a "miracle", given the animal's famously low reproductive rate, and fears that they may not survive have been quelled.

A video from Guangzhou's Chimelong Safari Park showed the three cubs sprawled on their fronts on a blanket in a small enclosure, nudging each other with their snouts and lying back yawning.

The two male and one female cubs, which first opened their eyes in September, now weigh six kilograms (13 pounds) each, the zoo said.

Visitors to their glass enclosure will be limited to 1,000 a day.

The celebration video traced the triplets' lives so far and portrayed the two young male cubs as looking up to their sister.

"Our older sister 'Long Long' leads us, and we are happy," the birthday song said.

The animals have not yet been officially named but will be soon, according to the zoo.


Last Updated on Thursday, 06 November 2014 14:44
Activists Pussy Riot visit in London to talk prison reform in Russia PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 16 November 2014 10:20


Pussy Riot has arrived in London – and the opposition to Putin punk extremist gathering has bounty to say in regards to Russia and, all the more particularly, the route in which they were dealt with in jail.


Parts Nadezhda Tolokonnikova and Maria Alekhina, who were sentenced to two years in jail for a 40-second execution approaching the Virgin Mary to "kick [president Vladimir] Putin out" in Moscow's Christ the Savior Cathedral in 2012, were discharged from correctional facility in December in the wake of serving year and a half.


The pair has been vocal about their abuse and incredulous of Kremlin purposeful publicity, since propelling a jail change extend in Russia, and additionally a site called Mediazona. They have formerly expressed that their objective is to make jail organizations realize that "they can't simply treat detainees as they need with exemption".


Identifying with the Guardian amid their first week-long visit to the UK capital, they said that amid their detainment they were dealt with like "creatures put in care for consideration".


Pussy Riot is situated to sue the Russian government over their difficulty, having documented a case at the European Court of Human Rights.


Tolokonnikova and Alekhina said: "This is the reason they [warders] easily thrashed individuals. They don't have a feeling that they [inmates] are human."


Alyokhina included: "We attempt and spread everything about penitentiaries and the more extensive law-requirement field. In the event that you read Mediazona for a week you won't have the capacity to say there are no political detainees in Russia."


Anyway they said it is progressively troublesome for individuals to enter the Kremlin purposeful publicity machine.


"At the point when all media and TV speaks just about Putin its extremely troublesome for individuals to create a feeling that they can pick between different gatherings."


Last Updated on Sunday, 16 November 2014 10:28
Sainsbury’s Nine Elms donates items for Herbert Morrison Primary School coffee morning PDF Print E-mail
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Wednesday, 01 October 2014 13:01



On Friday 26th September, Herbert Morrison’s Primary School held a coffee morning for Macmillan, with ingredients kindly donated by Sainsbury’s. Colleagues from the Nine Elms store Andy Robins, Anton Blair and Mohammed Abdul donated cakes, napkins, milk and coffee to the school.

Vanessa Bennett, a teacher from the school paid the store a visit with a few pupils to pick up the donations from the store colleagues, and thank them for their kind donation.

Vanessa said: ‘’Our Macmillan coffee morning was a great success, the cakes and coffee donated by Sainsburys Nine Elms were a real treat. All proceeds will go towards supporting Macmillan.’’

Last Updated on Wednesday, 01 October 2014 13:09
Social networks make push as shopping destinations PDF Print E-mail
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Sunday, 05 October 2014 19:13


They're not just for sharing any more: Facebook and Twitter are now looking to play a bigger role in shopping.

Both major social networks have unveiled plans to start using "buy" buttons on their sites, which could start having an impact on "social shopping" in the coming holiday season.

The idea of using social networks such as Facebook to promote e-commerce has been around for some time, but so far has failed to deliver much. Facebook had some short-lived programs for "digital gifts" and another program selling virtual goods via Facebook games.

"Social commerce," stemming from reviews or referrals from social networks, is expected to hit $15 billion by 2015, according to the research firm Invesp.

Some analysts see a natural connection between social networks and shopping, since users often discuss products and brands in the messages.

"Sharing is a fairly reliable indicator of what people are going to buy," says Andy Stevens, head of strategy and research for Share This, a company which produces a sharing button for websites and analyzes social media trends.



Last Updated on Sunday, 26 October 2014 20:00
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