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chinadaily.com.cn 2019-07-08 15:13


>Music students good learners

High school students who take music courses score significantly better on math, science and English exams than their non-musical peers, according to a new study published in the Journal of Educational Psychology.

School administrators needing to trim budgets often look first to music courses, because the general belief is that students who devote time to music rather than math, science and English, will underperform in those disciplines.

"Our research proved this belief wrong. Skills learned in instrumental music transfer very broadly to the students' learning in school," said the study's co-investigator Martin Guhn, an assistant professor in the University of British Columbia.

"A student has to learn to read music notation, develop eye-hand-mind coordination, develop keen listening skills, develop team skills for playing in an ensemble and develop discipline to practice. All those learning experiences, and more, play a role in enhancing the learner's cognitive capacities, executive functions, motivation to learn in school, and self-efficacy."


Photo by Andy Falconer on Unsplash

>Slum tour becomes popular

A tour of one of the world's biggest slums has been voted tourists' most popular attraction in India, according to travel site TripAdvisor.

The sprawling Dharavi slum in Mumbai just became the favorite tourist experience of 2019 in India and even beat the Taj Mahal, said TripAdvisor's Travelers' Choice Awards.

Slum tours around the world have become more and more popular in recent years and are the source of much discussion over their ethics.

Critics claim they are exploitative and poor areas are even cleared out or "sanitized" by police before tourists visit, meaning those who live in these areas are forced to go along.

Proponents however say any responsible tour is carried out by proud residents who show that their home is more than a slum and promote the enterprise and ingenuity within them.


Albufeira, Portugal/unsplash

>Dogs' eyes appeal to humans

Researchers have found that dogs have evolved muscles around their eyes, which allow them to make expressions that particularly appeal to humans.

A small facial muscle allows dog eyes to mimic an "infant-like" expression which prompts a "nurturing response".

The findings, from UK and US researchers in anatomy and comparative psychology, show that the facial change has developed over thousands of years of dogs living alongside humans.

Anatomist and report co-author, Professor Anne Burrows of Duquesne University in the US, says that in evolutionary terms the changes to dogs' facial muscles was "remarkably fast" and could be "directly linked to dogs' enhanced social interaction with humans".

The findings, says Professor Bridget Waller of the University of Portsmouth, show "how important faces can be in capturing our attention, and how powerful facial expression can be in social interaction".


Researchers of Commsat Technology Development Co work on a satellite in September 2018. [Photo provided to China Daily]

>Constellation of 192 satellites

China is planning to launch a constellation of 192 remote sensing satellites by 2021, reports China Central Television.

Artificial intelligence technology will process the images captured by the satellites, which will have sensors with multiple resolutions. This will allow poor quality images to be filtered out so that only useful data is beamed back to earth.

Scientists working on the project are also attempting to enable the constellation to be self-piloting.

When complete, the project is expected to provide better data for environmental monitoring, disaster prevention and mitigation, and traffic management.


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