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Sunday, February 19, 2017

Links - 19th February 2017 (1)

Couples Must Show Marriage Certification To Sit Next To Each Other In TransMalaya Express Bus - "The company relayed it segregates female and male passengers, both Muslim and non-Muslim, with the exception of married couples and family members. This is seen as an advantage to female passengers, to provide them with comfort, upon looming concerns of sexual harassment. “We have heard and read reports of how female travellers get molested by strangers, so we took this effort to give them a greater sense of security and comfort."... As of February last year, tickets were issued out to passengers according to appropriate seats − women on the right, while men on the left. Checks were also conducted for Muslim couples, where they would first need to show their marriage certification to the counter staff to sit together on the bus."

Bus driver who goes the extra mile awarded trip to UK - "On Dec 10, at the bus company’s inaugural awards night, Mr Kumaran — who joined the UK-based operator in May after 16 years with SMRT — received his biggest prize yet for excellent service: A pair of return tickets to London and five nights’ accommodation worth S$4,500. About 60 commuters have written in to praise him since the company launched its services. This is at least double the number of compliments that most of the firm’s top-performing bus drivers get, Tower Transit’s group communications director Glenn Lim said.""

Multilingual S’porean woman prevented WWIII in France airport by acting as peace corp translator - "The potentially planet-ending incident occurred after an American of African descent had overheard a group of mainland Chinese tourists saying “那个”, while waiting in line to clear immigration at the French international airport. The Chinese words, “那个”, which can be pronounced as “na ge” or “nei ge”, depending on accent and when spoken out loud in the mainland Chinese volume, bears an uncanny resemblance to “n*gger”. The American was witnessed to have gone ballistic and the Chinese tourists retaliated because they did not know what led to his aggression, resulting in a shouting match."
Ahh... Americans imposing their cultural context on others and then getting offended

9 of the Queen's Strangest Powers and Privileges - "SHE CAN DRIVE WITHOUT A LICENSE."

Rescue Mission Launched As Thousands Stranded On Higher Moral Ground - "A WORLDWIDE rescue mission has been launched today after thousands of internet commentators were left stranded on higher moral ground in dangerously ignorant conditions, following an incident in a Cincinnati zoo where a gorilla was shot in a bid to protect a young boy. Internet rescue service personnel have been inundated with emergency calls from people trapped in comment sections, many of whom are incredibly passionate about news stories they can jump to conclusions on without reading the facts."

An army of 1000 Japanese soldiers was decimated by saltwater crocodiles during the Battle of Ramree Island of World War II.

Chinese Velveting 101: An Introduction to Water-Velveting - "Velveting meat—the practice of marinating slices of meat in egg white, wine, and cornstarch—is a Chinese cooking technique that we've covered here on Serious Eats before. Typically, after the meat is marinated, it is quickly blanched in a bath of hot oil and then drained, at which point it's ready to be stir-fried. The end result is meat that's tender, silky, and smooth in texture"

Mother of Kiryat Arba terrorist: My son is a hero - "The mother of the Palestinian terrorist who killed an Israeli teenage girl as she slept in her bed early this morning tells a Hebron news channel that her son was “a hero” who made her “proud.” “My son died as a martyr defending Jerusalem and the Al-Aqsa Mosque,” the Palestinian Media Watch organization quotes the mother of Muhammad Tarayrah as saying. “Praise be to Allah, Lord of the Worlds, he [my son] has joined the martyrs before him, and he is not better than them. Allah willing, all of them will follow this path, all the youth of Palestine. Allah be praised.”"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, Who murdered Clara Kirton? - "Hair without a root can be used to determine ethnicity that might help narrow down a field of suspects or confirm the identity of someone already in the frame. But in most cases, strands of hair without roots will not deliver a full DNA profile. It's thought that will be possible in 3-4 years"

BBC Radio 4 - Best of Today, How do you become a comedy writer? - "I worry about modern comedy though. It seems to be getting cruder and cruder. Charm and subtlety are lost. The double entendre has been replaced by the single entendre"

It’s time to move on from AWARE - "Poor Malay women were told they need to stop having children, while educated Chinese women were being given benefits to have more. When AWARE was formed, reproductive rights to abortion and contraception were fought for as a “choice,” as it is for Chinese women, but Malay women were not even given this choice due to sterilization programmes, and this is an issue that has been largely ignored by AWARE. The truth is, AWARE was not started to combat the pain and horror of this country’s eugenicist policies. Nope. It was formed to protect precious Chinese wombs."
Will Sangeetha's allies abandon her now?; the left eats itself

The Epic of Gilgamesh Theme of Sex - "Shamhat uses sex as a way to civilize Enkidu. In Mesopotamian culture, sex with a gal like Shamhat connected her lover to the divine life-force, so to speak. This apparently explains how Enkidu becomes more man than beast (which, when you think about it, is a funny inversion of how we usually think about sex—that it makes us like animals)"

Central Java Governor bans ancient sex ritual on Mt. Kemukus - "Those who seek wealth are encouraged to have sexual intercourse on the mountain with someone other than their legal partner in order to achieve prosperity... Before his death, Prince Samodra left a message stating that for any person willing to engage in intercourse with a person other than his or her legal partner seven times on Pon Friday, the day when Samodra died alongside Ontrowulan, the person'€™s wishes would be fulfilled."

Why Stormtroopers Always Miss - Imgur

Star Wars: The Clone Wars Chronological Episode Order |

Why the Pentagon opening all combat roles to women could subject them to a military draft

Tetris taught me that when you try to fit in you'll disappear. : Showerthoughts - "But if you don't fit you lose..."
"Isn't Tetris actually a metaphor for communism?"

Raccoons and the Myth of Washing Food |

Australia data shows gun controls a huge success 20 years after mass shooting - "The chances of being murdered by a gun in Australia plunged to 0.15 per 100,000 people in 2014 from 0.54 per 100,000 people in 1996, a decline of 72 percent, a Reuters analysis of Australian Bureau of Statistics figures showed... The country has had no mass shootings since."

Class Size: What Research Says and What it Means for State Policy - "Class-size reduction has been shown to work for some students in some grades in some states and countries, but its impact has been found to be mixed or not discernable in other settings and circumstances that seem similar. It is very expensive. The costs and benefits of class-size mandates need to be carefully weighed against all of the alternatives when difficult decisions must be made... Harris finds short-term rates of return for computer-aided instruction, cross-age tutoring, early childhood programs, and increases in instructional time that are all greater than those for CSR... The popularity of class-size reduction may make it politically difficult for policymakers to increase class size in order to sustain other investments in education, even in a time of budget austerity"
Keywords: Student-Teacher ratio, Teacher-Student ratio

UK's leading student union adopts controversial new stance on gay men - "The National Union of Students (NUS) LGBT+ Campaign has concluded during its recent annual conference that gay men do not require a reserved place on society committees because they ‘do not face oppression as gay men within the LGBT+ community.’ It is now appealing to LGBT+ societies all over the country to drop their gay men’s representatives. The conclusion stemmed from the shared view of the delegates at the conference, which took place in Sheffield from 15-17 March, that ‘white cis gay men’ are often responsible for misogyny, racism and anti-transgender and anti-bisexual sentiments"

In Photos: Feasting on Dog Meat at China’s Infamous Summer Solstice Festival

Stand-Up Comics Have to Censor Their Jokes on College Campuses - "they wanted comedy that was 100 percent risk-free, comedy that could not trigger or upset or mildly trouble a single student. They wanted comedy so thoroughly scrubbed of barb and aggression that if the most hypersensitive weirdo on campus mistakenly wandered into a performance, the words he would hear would fall on him like a soft rain, producing a gentle chuckle and encouraging him to toddle back to his dorm, tuck himself in, and commence a dreamless sleep—not text Mom and Dad that some monster had upset him with a joke... I saw ample evidence of the repressive atmosphere that Rock and Seinfeld described, as well as another, not unrelated factor: the infantilization of the American undergraduate, and this character’s evolving status in the world of higher learning—less a student than a consumer, someone whose whims and affectations (political, sexual, pseudo-intellectual) must be constantly supported and championed. To understand this change, it helps to think of college not as an institution of scholarly pursuit but as the all-inclusive resort that it has in recent years become—and then to think of the undergraduate who drops out or transfers as an early checkout... “You can’t use logic on these people,” Geoff Keith told me over dinner at the Hilton, “or then they think you’re a dick.”... The college revolutions of the 1960s—the ones that gave rise to the social-justice warriors of today’s campuses—were fueled by free speech. But once you’ve won a culture war, free speech is a nuisance, and “eliminating” language becomes a necessity."

Maths study shows conspiracies 'prone to unravelling' - "the chance that a conspiracy is revealed becomes quite large as time passes and the number of conspirators grows. The Moon landing hoax, for instance, began in 1965 and would have involved about 411,000 Nasa employees. With these parameters, Dr Grimes's equation suggests that the hoax would have been revealed after 3.7 years"

Russian atheist faces year in jail for denying existence of God during webchat

Large breasts and narrow waists indicate high reproductive potential in women. - "women with higher breast-to-underbreast ratio (large breasts) and women with relatively low WHR (narrow waists) have higher fecundity as assessed by precise measurements of daily levels of 17-beta-oestradiol (E2) and progesterone. Furthermore, women who are characterized by both narrow waists and large breasts have 26% higher mean E2 and 37% higher mean mid-cycle E2 levels than women from three groups with other combinations of body-shape variables, i.e. low WHR with small breasts and high WHR with either large or small breasts. Such gains in hormone levels among the preferred mates may lead to a substantial rise in the probability of conception, thus providing a significant fitness benefit."

New Theory on Why Men Love Breasts - "In a 1951 study of 191 cultures, anthropologist Clellan Ford and ethologist Frank Beach reported that breasts were considered sexually important to men in 13 of those cultures. Of those, nine cultures preferred large breasts. Two — the Azande and Ganda of Africa — found long, pendulous breasts most attractive. Another two — the Maasai of Africa and Manus of the South Pacific — liked breasts that were upright and "hemispherical," but not necessarily large. Thirteen cultures also reported breast simulation during sex, but only three of those overlapped with the societies where men reported finding breasts important for sexual attraction. In a chapter in the book "Breastfeeding: Biocultural Perspectives" (Aldine de Gruyter, 1995), cultural anthropologist Katherine Dettwyler describes telling friends in Mali about sexual foreplay involving breasts and getting responses ranging from "bemused to horrified."... A 2011 study compared men's preferences for breast size, symmetry, and areola size and color in Papua New Guina, Samoa and New Zealand and found that men from Papua New Guinea preferred larger breasts than men from the other two islands. Because the men surveyed from Papua New Guinea hailed from more of a subsistence culture than the men in Samoa or New Zealand, the results support the idea that in places of scarcity, padded bustlines could signal a well-fed woman with reserves for pregnancy and childrearing, the researchers wrote. Areola size and color preferences were highly idiosyncratic between cultures... Recent studies have found that nipple stimulation enhances sexual arousal in the great majority of women, and it activates the same brain areas as vaginal and clitoral stimulation. When a sexual partner touches, massages or nibbles a woman's breasts, Young said, this triggers the release of oxytocin in the woman's brain, just like what happens when a baby nurses. But in this context, the oxytocin focuses the woman's attention on her sexual partner, strengthening her desire to bond with this person. In other words, men can make themselves more desirable by stimulating a woman's breasts during foreplay and sex. Evolution has, in a sense, made men want to do this."

Gene Expression: Intercourse and Intelligence - "Depending on the specific age and gender, an adolescent with an IQ of 100 was 1.5 to 5 times more likely to have had intercourse than a teen with a score of 120 or 130. Each additional point of IQ increased the odds of virginity by 2.7% for males and 1.7% for females. But higher IQ had a similar relationship across the entire range of romantic/sexual interactions, decreasing the odds that teens had ever kissed or even held hands with a member of the opposite sex at each age... The student surveys at MIT and Wellesley also compared virginity by academic major. The chart for Wellesley displayed below shows that 0% of studio art majors were virgins, but 72% of biology majors were virgins, and 83% of biochem and math majors were virgins! Similarly, at MIT 20% of 'humanities' majors were virgins, but 73% of biology majors. (Apparently those most likely to read Darwin are also the least Darwinian!)... Looking at this chart it would strongly appear that higher complexity majors contain more virgins than majors with lower cognitive demand... Sexual behavior (or at least the investment needed to procure a partner or sustain one) may compete with time/resources required for other goals, and intelligent people may have more demanding goals. James Watson even hinted at this in a recent Esquire magazine piece:
If I had been married earlier in life, I wouldn't have seen the double helix. I would have been taking care of the kids on Saturday. On the other hand, I was lonely a lot of the time...
intelligence correlates with less sex within marriage for the same age range. While still consistent with pregnancy fears and competing interests, lower sex drive seems like a better fit. In fact another revealing finding from the Counterpoint survey was that while 95% of US men and 70% of women masturbate, this number is only 68% of men and 20% of women at MIT!... the smartest men in the GSS (approx. IQ >120) were also more likely to visit a prostitute. (Hardly indicative of cautiousness) This may suggest intelligent men are less able to find willing sex partners. Are smart men less attractive to women? Perhaps in some ways. For instance HS found that smart men were less likely to be athletic, and this paper shows, unathletic men and women have fewer sex partners. Athletic men, with more willing sexual partners are also less likely to visit a prostitute. Athletic activity gives men more masculine bodies, which are more attractive to women. A more masculine physique correlates with (PDF) an increased number of sex partners."

'White Allies': #BlackLivesMatter Walrus Admits She Only Wants Their Money (UPDATE) - "Want to know what the BLM thugs think about their white allies? This one says she only wants to use white allies to drain their bank accounts, says that every single possession or cultural aspect whites own was stolen — she claims that literally everything white people have should be given away to blacks. And to top it all off, she wants to physically beat white allies who show up at protests, and thinks that they should only be utilized in militant operations as dumb, silent, “police buffers”."
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