Could Porn Be Good For Society

first_img Viewing child porn not a risk factor for future sex offenses: study More information: Milton Diamond, “Porn: Good for us?”, The Scientist. Available online. (PhysOrg.com) — The arguments against pornography are many, ranging from insistence that porn degrades women and is morally reprehensible to the assertion that pornography viewing is the cause of sex crimes. However, over the years, there have been numerous studies done on this subject. And, reports The Scientist, it appears that there are links between sex crimes and pornography. Just not the sort of links many of us might have expected. Instead of causing sex crimes, porn might actually contribute to reducing their incidence. Explore further Here is what The Scientist reports on the matter:Over the years, many scientists have investigated the link between pornography (considered legal under the First Amendment in the United States unless judged “obscene”) and sex crimes and attitudes towards women. And in every region investigated, researchers have found that as pornography has increased in availability, sex crimes have either decreased or not increased.While that is far from a ringing endorsement, it does at least seem to indicate that pornography isn’t contributing to sex crimes. While some naysayers may point out that most offenders in prison have been exposed to porn, the fact of the matter is that nearly every male — and a good number of females — is exposed to pornography at some point. It stands to reason that most offenders have viewed porn. But other studies found that being punished for porn use might contribute to someone becoming a rapist, and not the porn use itself. Indeed, continues The Scientist, a repressive religious upbringing might be more of a factor in rape than porn:Looking closer, Michael Goldstein and Harold Kant found that rapists were more likely than nonrapists in the prison population to have been punished for looking at pornography while a youngster, while other research has shown that incarcerated nonrapists had seen more pornography, and seen it at an earlier age, than rapists. What does correlate highly with sex offense is a strict, repressive religious upbringing. Richard Green too has reported that both rapists and child molesters use less pornography than a control group of “normal” males.This sort of assertion is bound to raise a few eyebrows and even cause a little controversy. Especially when taken alongside studies that seem to indicate that porn doesn’t result in feelings of misogyny. Additionally, while there is anecdotal evidence that porn users are abusive toward their female partners, there is no evidence that pornography use is the cause of these actions. Perhaps there are other factors, such as alcoholism or violent tendencies, that are bigger influences.In any case, while such studies do not prove that porn is actively good for society, they do seem to imply that pornography isn’t actively bad for us. Image source: cambridge.gov.uk © 2010 PhysOrg.com Citation: Could Porn Be Good For Society? (2010, March 10) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2010-03-porn-good-society.html 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

NTT researchers develop breakthrough optical memory device

first_imgDevice structure and static response. Image: Nature Photonics (2012) doi:10.1038/nphoton.2012.2 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. © 2011 PhysOrg.com Explore further More information: Ultralow-power all-optical RAM based on nanocavities, Nature Photonics (2012) doi:10.1038/nphoton.2012.2AbstractOptical random-access memory (o-RAM) has been regarded as one of the most difficult challenges in terms of replacing its various functionalities in electronic circuitry with their photonic counterparts. Nevertheless, it constitutes a key device in optical routing and processing. Here, we demonstrate that photonic crystal nanocavities with an ultrasmall buried heterostructure design can solve most of the problems encountered in previous o-RAMs. By taking advantage of the strong confinement of photons and carriers and allowing heat to escape efficiently, we have realized all-optical RAMs with a power consumption of only 30 nW, which is more than 300 times lower than the previous record, and have achieved continuous operation. We have also demonstrated their feasibility in multibit integration. This paves the way for constructing a low-power large-scale o-RAM system that can handle high-bit-rate optical signals. Journal information: Nature Photonicscenter_img All computer memory is based on a material that is able to have 1s and Os written on to it and held in such a state long enough to be useful. Also necessary is an ability to erase or write over those 1s and Os so that the same memory material can be used over and over.The new memory device created by the NTT team relies on optical cavities that are created in a material that can be made to represent 1s and Os by either transmitting light, or by blocking it.To make the memory cell, the team buried a very tiny strip of indium gallium arsenide phosphide in a small piece of indium phosphide. The outer portion was then etched with holes small enough to control the flow of laser light of a certain frequency. They left a path running though the middle of the material un-etched to provide a means for light from a laser to move in and out of the cell.When laser light is shone on the material, it follows the path through the memory cell and the refraction index is changed causing a pulse of light to either pass through on not, representing either a 1 or O state. Another pulse changes it to another state and so on. To help the memory material maintain its state, a second laser provides a constant stream of background light.The memory cell was able to hold onto the state it created for a microsecond, which quadruples the old record and it also uses far less energy than conventional designs. A memory chip with four of the optical memory cells consumes just 30 millawatts of energy, whereas common use flash drives use five times that amount.But the real breakthrough here is the development of actual memory cells based on optics that are able to hold onto the data states they create long enough for them to be used by other parts of a hardware device. And while the memory cells are far too large to be of use right now, new designs based on this work might just lead to that elusive Holy Grail, an Internet backbone made entirely of optical components. Engineers at Yale develop new type of mechanical memory (PhysOrg.com) — To improve transmission speeds, the Internet has transitioned over the years from one using copper to fiber optic cabling. Unfortunately, this has caused a bottleneck to occur where the light signals meet with electronic circuitry. Researchers have been working for years on a way to make routers, and most particularly, their memory, all optic, to avoid having to convert the signals at all. Now, it appears one such group, NTT, a Japanese telecommunications company, has figured out a way to do it. They describe their work in a paper published in Nature Photonics. Citation: NTT researchers develop breakthrough optical memory device (2012, February 27) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2012-02-ntt-breakthrough-optical-memory-device.htmllast_img read more

Ecologists suggest it is time to rethink the modern lawn

first_img More information: Maria Ignatieva et al. An alternative urban green carpet, Science (2018). DOI: 10.1126/science.aau6974 Credit: CC0 Public Domain A pair of urban ecologists, one from Australia, the other Sweden, suggests in a Perspective piece published in the journal Science that it might be time to rethink the idea of the modern lawn. In their paper, Maria Ignatieva and Marcus Hedblom note that the natural benefits of green lawns are far outweighed by negative environmental consequences, and because of that, new forms of groundcover need to be explored. Explore further © 2018 Phys.org Journal information: Sciencecenter_img The expanse of cut green grass that surrounds many houses and serves as a draw to parks and other outdoor places is not as green as it might look. The modern lawn requires not only a lot of water, but fertilizer. It also requires mowing, in most cases using gas-powered machines that spew carbon monoxide and other toxins into the air. Ignatieva and Hedblom note that it is true that lawns offer some positive benefits such as pulling carbon dioxide out of the air, but the negative aspects of lawn care far outweigh their benefits. They note that globally, lawns currently occupy land space equivalent to England and Spain combined. Lawns also currently require an enormous amount of water—in arid regions, lawns account for 75 percent of water consumption. They also note that weed killers and fertilizers wind up in the water table. And artificial turf, they note, is not a likely solution. It doesn’t contribute to carbon sequestering, causes problems with water runoff, and might be poisoning local water tables.Because of the obvious drawbacks, the researchers suggest that it is time for the world to rethink the idea of a lawn. They note that some communities have already begun to do so by allowing natural meadows in place of lawns. Such meadows, they note, can be made aesthetically pleasing by using grasses suited for the purpose. They also note that in some places, such as sections of Berlin, landscape has been allowed to grow wild. More realistically, they suggest research into plant types might result in the development of naturally short grasses that do not need much water to survive. In the end, they suggest that perhaps a combination of efforts might work. But for that to happen, people need to start reframing the mindset of modern groundcover. Citation: Ecologists suggest it is time to rethink the modern lawn (2018, October 12) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2018-10-ecologists-rethink-modern-lawn.html Grow, mow, mulch: Finding lawn’s value 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

Observing matterwave diffraction from a periodic array of half planes

first_img “Our experiment is based on the wave–particle duality, which is a basic concept in quantum mechanics,” Wieland Schöllkopf, one of the researchers who carried out the study, told Phys.org. “The idea that microscopic particles such as electrons, neutrons, atoms or even molecules exhibit wave-like behavior dates back to the 1920s, when Louis de Broglie introduced the particle wavelength, which today is referred to as the ‘de Broglie wavelength.'” Since de Broglie first developed his theory, researchers have carried out numerous experiments observing diffraction and interference, two wave phenomena that cannot be explained in a particle picture. The main aim of the study carried out by Schöllkopf and his colleagues was to investigate novel matter-wave diffraction methods that allow for coherent manipulation of atomic and molecular beams. “We observed diffraction of He atoms and D2 molecules scattering off from a grating structure,” Schöllkopf explained. “The latter is formed by a periodic array of polymer film structured on a gold-coated glass substrate. A variety of grating structures, all with identical period, but differing in the width of the polymer stripes, were made at UNIST in Ulsan, Korea. These gratings were used in the diffraction apparatus at the Fritz-Haber-Institut in Berlin, Germany.” The apparatus at the Fritz-Haber-Institut allowed the researchers to generate an intense beam of He or D2 with extremely narrow angular divergence. The generated beam is incident to the grating under grazing conditions, hence, the particles’ velocity component perpendicular to the grating surface is very small. “In previous experiments carried out at our lab, we have observed coherent reflection and diffraction from a grating structure under grazing incidence conditions,” Schöllkopf said. “This was attributed to ‘quantum reflection,’ which is a reflection mechanism different from classical reflection.” In classical reflection, as atoms or molecules approach a surface, they are affected by the atom-surface van der Waals force. This force leads to an acceleration towards the surface, with the particle ultimately bouncing off from the surface. On the other hand, in quantum reflection, the atoms or molecules already bounce back from the region in space dominated by the van der Waals force. Researchers at Ulsan National Institute of Science and Technology (UNIST), in Korea, and Fritz-Haber-Institut der Max-Planck-Gesellschaft, in Germany, have recently conducted a study investigating matter-wave diffraction from a periodic array of half planes. Their paper, published on Physical Review Letters (PRL), reports on the reflection and diffraction of He and D2 beams from square-wave gratings of a 400−μm period and strip widths ranging from 10 to 200 μm at grazing-incidence conditions. Explore further A schematic picture of half-plane array diffraction. Credit: Lee et al. More information: Ju Hyeon Lee et al. Matter-Wave Diffraction from a Periodic Array of Half Planes, Physical Review Letters (2019). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.122.040401Hilmar Oberst et al. Fresnel Diffraction Mirror for an Atomic Wave, Physical Review Letters (2005). DOI: 10.1103/PhysRevLett.94.013203 A third reflection mechanism, which differs from classical and quantum reflection, is based on the diffraction of the de Broglie waves of atoms or molecules from the edges of half planes, which are very narrow ridges on a surface. This mechanism, first observed in Japan by Prof. Shimizu and his colleagues, is now referred to as “Fresnel diffraction mirror” due to its analogy with the edge diffraction of light waves in optics. In their study, Schöllkopf and his colleagues observed fully resolved matter-wave diffraction patterns, including specular reflection and diffracted beams up to the second diffraction order. They also found that as strip width decreased, diffraction efficiencies transformed from the known regime of quantum reflection to the regime of edge diffraction. “In our experiment, we observed the transition from quantum reflection for relatively large widths of the grating stripes to the regime at small stripe widths where edge diffraction dominates,” Schöllkopf said. “Furthermore, in addition to the specular (mirror-like) reflection seen previously, we observed intense grating diffraction beams up to second order.”The experimental findings collected by the researchers confirm a previously developed single-parameter model, which is commonly used to describe a variety of phenomena, including quantum billiards, scattering of radio waves in urban areas and the reflection of matter waves from microstructures. Moreover, their observations suggest that neither classical nor quantum reflection mechanisms are essential for the reflective diffraction of matter waves from a structured solid, as this can result exclusively from half-plane edge diffraction. “Our observations allowed us to make a quantitative analysis of the reflection and diffraction efficiencies,” Bum Suk Zhao from UNIST, the principle investigator of the study, told Phys.org. “This, in turn, allowed for an experimental test of the Bogomolny-Schmit model of half-plane array diffraction. According to this model description the phenomenon is fully scalable with respect to the wavelength and the dimensions of the half-plane array. As a result, for a given incidence angle, the scattering of atomic matter waves of 1 nm de Broglie wavelength from a 4-μm-period array of parallel half planes shows identical diffraction effects as, e.g., the scattering of 1-cm-wavelength radio waves off buildings separated by 40 m.” The study conducted by Schöllkopf, Zhao and their colleagues provides a clear confirmation of the Bogomolny-Schmit model. In the future, their findings could also be used as a test bench for models of quantum reflection from microstructured surfaces that need to account for half-plane edge diffraction. In their next studies, the researchers plan to apply half-plane array diffraction to the investigation of weakly bound molecules, such as the He dimer and trimer.”Due to their extremely small binding energies, these di- and triatomic helium molecules are not amenable to many experimental tools,” Bum Suk Zhao explained. “For instance, classical scattering of He2 from a solid surface will inevitably lead to break-up. To overcome these limitations, more experimental techniques allowing for non-destructive manipulation of these species are needed. Half-plane array diffraction is a well suited method for this purpose.” ‘Meta-mirror’ reflects sound waves in any direction Journal information: Physical Review Letters “This counter-intuitive quantum effect of attractive forces, effectively resulting in recoil of the particle, can only be observed if the incident velocity in the direction perpendicular to the surface is very small,” Schöllkopf explained. “This is why, in our experiment, we can only observe quantum reflection at near grazing incidence conditions.” © 2019 Science X Network Citation: Observing matter-wave diffraction from a periodic array of half planes (2019, February 20) retrieved 18 August 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2019-02-matter-wave-diffraction-periodic-array-planes.html A photograph of the research team taken inside a lab at Fritz-Haber-Institute, in Berlin. Credit: Lee et al. 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

HIDCO to develop land beside Biswa Bangla Convention Centre

first_imgKOLKATA: Housing and Infrastructure Development Corporation (HIDCO) will develop the land situated beside the Biswa Bangla Convention Centre.The decision was taken in the board meeting of HIDCO held on Saturday.The land measuring around 7-acre was used during the Bengal Global Business Summit (BGBS) held in January. A permanent stage will be constructed along with better infrastructure that includes supply of drinking water and food stalls, proper lighting arrangements among others so that the land can be used for exhibition and other similar purposes. Also Read – Heavy rain hits traffic, flightsIt may be recalled that Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had inaugurated the country’s biggest convention centre in October, 2017. The Centre has an auditorium that can accommodate 3,200 people. There are banquet halls, exhibition halls, restaurants and a 112-bed accommodation. The Centre is in high demand and meetings organised by different groups are held regularly, the last being the Chinese Education fair.In the meeting, HIDCO has also taken an important decision to construct a suspended bridge connecting the Eco Island with the Eco Park. There was a proposed ridge in the master plan of the park made in 2011-12. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Merc, 2 B’deshi bystanders killedThe iconic designer suspension bridge will be 135 m long and 3.5 m wide. It will be made of steel. Besides a boat service, the connectivity is now maintained by a two step wooden bridge. But as the number of visitors has increased at the Eco Park, the wooden bridge is used by battery powered vehicles to ferry senior citizens and goods. Recently, senior engineers of state Irrigation and Waterways department had examined the health of the wooden bridge and have recommended re-painting with bitumen the logs that are under water.Tender to select the firm will be floated soon. The bridge will be constructed keeping in mind the character of the Eco Park, the country’s biggest urban park.last_img read more

US cinema shooter escapes death penalty

first_imgThe American gunman who stormed a Batman movie premier and killed 12 cinemagoers has escaped the death penalty but will likely spend the rest of his life behind bars.A Colorado jury failed to find unanimity on execution for 27-year-old former graduate student James Holmes, obliging the judge to impose a sentence of life without parole.Last month, the killer had been convicted on 12 counts of murder in the first degree and scores more charges including murder, attempted murder and explosives possession. But defense counsel argued he has a mental illness and urged jurors to show clemency, an appeal apparently heeded by at least one of the panel of nine women and three men.  Also Read – Nine hurt in accident at fireworks show in French resortOn each of the 12 murder counts that could had merited the death penalty, the jury said, in a statement read to the court “we do not have a unanimous final sentencing verdict on this count and … understand the court will impose a sentence of life imprisonment without the possibility of parole.” District Judge Carlos Samour thanked the jury for their service and set August 24 to 26 as the dates for Holmes’ formal sentencing. Holmes attacked the packed premiere of “The Dark Knight Rises” at the Century 16 theater in Aurora on July 20, 2012, spraying bullets into the dark auditorium.Clad in body armor and with peculiar dyed-orange hair, he fired hundreds of rounds before police halted a spree that had left 12 people dead.last_img read more

TMC observes black day in WB against manhandling of its leaders

first_imgKolkata: The Trinamool Congress today observed a ‘black day’ in various parts of West Bengal in protest against the alleged “detention and manhandling” of its leaders in Assam’s Silchar airport. The protest will continue tomorrow too, party sources said. TMC ministers, leaders and activists hit the streets in the districts and blocks across the state to protest against the alleged assault on the eight-member TMC team at the Silchar airport on Thursday when they tried to enter Assam’s Cachar district to assess the situation in the wake of the publication of the final draft of the National Register of Citizens (NRC). Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life Carrying placards and sporting black masks and badges, TMC activists shouted slogans against the BJP governments at the Centre and Assam and the final draft of the NRC, published on July 30 and touted to be The eight-member TMC delegation had comprised of six MPs, an MLA and West Bengal minister Firhad Hikim. They were stopped at the Silchar airport and put under preventive detention. They returned to the city yesterday. TMC chief and West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee had alleged that the members of the delegation, including women, were manhandled at the airport and accused the BJP of imposing a “super emergency” in the country. TMC secretary-general Partha Chatterjee had yesterday said, “What happened to our party delegation is not only shameful but also undemocratic. Our slogan will be ‘we don’t need this monstrous government anymore’.”last_img read more

For faster payment of cashless treatment healthcare units can now submit bills

first_imgKolkata: In a bid to process the payment of cashless treatment costs faster for all those empanelled under the health scheme, the state government has introduced online grant of permission and submission of bills and documents by the empanelled Health Care Organisations (HCOs) in the West Bengal Health Portal.The state Finance department has come out with a notification stating that seeking permission by HCOs, grant of permission by medical cell, preparation of day-wise bills and submission of final bills by HCOs has been made online. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal lifeIt may be mentioned that the West Bengal Health for All Employees and Pensioners Scheme was introduced in August 2014.According to a senior official of the state Finance department, presently the permission is sought and responded between the empanelled HCOs and medical cell of the Finance department through dedicated emails.For reimbursement of cashless claims up to Rs 1 lakh, these HCOs are required to enter few basic details of the bills in the West Bengal Health Portal and then submit physical copies of the bills along with other relevant documents to the medical cell of the Finance department.The cell scrutinises the bills and supporting documents for the payment.If the claim is found satisfactory, payment up to Rs 1 lakh is released to HCO’s by Drawing and Disbursing Officer (DDO) of the Finance department’s medical cell.”Now with the entire process going online, we are hopeful of faster disbursement of medical claims,” an official said.last_img read more

From Bhikkhu Matre to Biranchi Das

first_imgRejected three times by the National School of Drama, Bajpayee is now one of the most poignant actors in Bollywood. Known for his drastically antithetical roles, he is all set to take over the cinema halls this Friday with his upcoming fling Budhia: Born to Run.Based on the real-life incident, Budhia: Born to Run is the story of a boy called Budhia Singh from Odisha.  Budhia ran from Bhubaneswar to Puri at the age of four covering 65 kilometres in seven hours and two minutes thus listing himself as the world’s youngest marathon runner in the Limca book of records in the year 2006.  Also Read – American Crime Story 3 to chronicle Clinton’s impeachmentIn a recent press conference held in the national Capital, Bajpayee talked about the various aspects that surrounded the film. On being asked what inspired him to do this film, the actor replied, “I have been following this case ever since it came into the limelight. There was something very intriguing about this story that forced me to take up this film.”Bajpayee who will be essaying the role of Budhia’s coach, Biranchi Das, also talked about the challenges that he faced in essaying the role of the slain coach, whose murder is still a mystery.  Also Read – Add new books to your shelfThe actor  took help from footage recorded when Budhia became famous to get into the skin of Biranchi’s character. Based on his understanding of Biranchi’s character, he was of the view that Biranchi was a very brash and headstrong person who wanted to make Budhia achieve the target he had set for him. His character deeply fascinated Bajpayee. “An actor has to be extremely brave and should possess a lot of courage in order to find all the characters within himself, it is quite a horrendous task to delve into a character”, said the Aligarh actor. He also talked about the most appealing aspect of the movie that is the relationship of the boy and the coach.” It is new and something very different from what you have seen before” said Bajpayee.The 47-year-old actor also expressed his concern over the deplorable situation of Budhia who lives in a sports hostel and barely manages to run for 10 or 15 kms because of the lack of mentorship. Biranchi’s sudden death brought a halt to Budhia’s athletic career.A doting father to a five-year old, Bajpayee firmly believes that everyone should live their dreams. He talked about the immense amount of talent in different parts of India that remains unnurtured. He urged the people and the government to form an association to train and mentor those children who have talent but due to the lack of resources they are miles away from fulfilling their dreams.Budhia: Born to Run will hit the screens on August 5. The movie aims to send out a message that no talent should go unnoticed.last_img read more

Mamata as PM is not an isolated comment by BJP Somen Mitra

first_imgKolkata: West Bengal Congress president Somen Mitra Monday said BJP president Dilip Ghosh’s comment that Mamata Banerjee has the best chance to become PM, is proof of “tacit understanding” between TMC and the BJP. “Dilip Ghosh’s statement that Mamata Banerjee has the best chance to become the first Bengali Prime Minister is not an isolated statement. It is a reflection of tacit understanding between both the parties in the state. We have been saying this for a long time but now the cat is out of the bag,” Mitra told reporters here. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life Ghosh had, however, on Sunday made a U-turn and said his remark the day earlier on Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee’s prime ministerial prospects was made in jest. Mitra termed Ghosh’s u-turn as a “lame excuse” and said that the people of the state very well understood the kind of “political setting” that exist between parties. Mitra claimed that by making the statement, Ghosh has virtually accepted that the BJP will not return to power in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls and might extend support to Mamata Banerjee in such a scenario. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killed Commenting on the general strike called by various Left trade unions on January 8 and 9, Mitra said TMC’s opposition to the strike call is another example of ‘TMC-BJP fixed match’ in the state. “Why is she opposed to the strike call in the state? It is not against the state government. It is a nationwide strike call against the policies of the Modi government. This only proves that the TMC and BJP are both on the same page regarding economic policies and TMC’s call to fight against BJP is nothing but a farce,” he said. As many as 10 central trade unions have called a nationwide general strike on January 8 and 9, against the “anti-people” policies of the Centre and have placed a charter of 12 demands before the Centre. The demands include minimum wage, universal social security, workers’ status and including pay and facilities for the scheme workers, against privatisation of public and government organisations. Leaders and activists of various parties including TMC, Union Muslim League and CPI(M) Monday joined Congress and vowed to fight against the communal politics of TMC and BJP in the state.last_img read more