Sunday, December 19, 2010

Mom's voice 'plays vital role in activating child's brain'

A mom's voice plays vital role in activating her newborn child's brain responsible for language learning, says a new study.

Researchers from University of Montreal and Sainte- Justine University Hospital Research Centre claim to have made the discovery after performing electrical recordings on the infants within the 24 hours following their birth.

The brain signals also revealed that while the infants did react to other women's voices, these sounds only activated the voice recognition parts of the brains.

"This is exciting research that proves for the first time that the newborn's brain responds strongly to the mother's voice and shows, scientifically speaking, that the mother's voice is special to babies," said lead researcher Dr Maryse Lassonde of the University of Montreal.

Brain exploration had never before been undertaken on such young participants. "We applied electrodes to the heads of 16 babies while they were sleeping," Lassonde explained, "and we asked the mother to make the short 'A' vowel sound -- like in the French word 'allô'.

"We then repeated the exercise with the female nurse who brought the baby to the lab. When the mother spoke, the scans very clearly show reactions in the left-hemisphere of the brain, and in particular the language processing and motor skills circuit.

"Conversely, when the stranger spoke, the right-hemisphere of the brain reacted. The right-hemisphere is associated with voice recognition," he said.

"Motherese" -- the special voice mother's use to communicate with their babies -- is scientifically recognised.

The researchers took this into account by involving a nurse who is herself a mother, and they also countered the "novelty" aspect by arranging for the mother to meet with the nurse at regular intervals before the birth.

Finally, speech analysis was used to ensure that the mother's voice and the voices of the other woman were sufficiently comparable.

"This research confirms that the mother is the primary initiator of language and suggests that there is a neurobiological link between prenatal language acquisition and motor skills involved in speech," Lassonde said.

The findings have been published in the latest edition of the 'Cerebral Cortex' journal.



Countdown of satellite launch begins today

The countdown for ISRO’s GSLV-F06 rocket, which will carry GSAT-5P, India’s latest communication satellite, from Satish Dhawan space centre at Sriharikota in Andhra Pradesh begins at 11.01 am on Sunday. GSAT-5P will blast off to space from Sriharikota on Monday.

Space Research Organization’s (ISRO’s) director (publications and public relations) S. Satish said there are 24 C band transponders and 12 extended C band transponders in the 2,310 kg satellite which will be used for communication purposes. “After the satellite is put into final orbit, we will test it and within a month’s time the satellite will be fully operational. The transponders will be used by very small aperture terminal (VSAT) operators for communication,” he said.

Mr. Satish pointed out that the allotment of transponders would be done after the satellite was put into orbit. Monday's launch is to replace Insat2E that was launched in 1999 to cater to Asia and Australia.

The 51-meter-tall, 418-tonne, GSLV is a three-stage satellite launch vehicle. The vehicle’s third stage has the country’s indigenous cryogenic engine which is more efficient and provides more thrust for every kilogram of propellant it burns. The overall length of the vehicle has been increased by about 1.3 meters, compared to previous versions. ISRO has till date launched six GSLV rockets with satellites, of which only four missions were fully successful.



Friday, October 8, 2010

Google Instant

Google Instant is a new search enhancement that shows results as you type. We are pushing the limits of our technology and infrastructure to help you get better search results, faster. Our key technical insight was that people type slowly, but read quickly, typically taking 300 milliseconds between keystrokes, but only 30 milliseconds (a tenth of the time!) to glance at another part of the page. This means that you can scan a results page while you type.

The most obvious change is that you get to the right content much faster than before because you don’t have to finish typing your full search term, or even press “search.” Another shift is that seeing results as you type helps you formulate a better search term by providing instant feedback. You can now adapt your search on the fly until the results match exactly what you want. In time, we may wonder how search ever worked in any other way.


Faster Searches: By predicting your search and showing results before you finish typing, Google Instant can save 2-5 seconds per search.

Smarter Predictions: Even when you don’t know exactly what you’re looking for, predictions help guide your search. The top prediction is shown in grey text directly in the search box, so you can stop typing as soon as you see what you need.

Instant Results: Start typing and results appear right before your eyes. Until now, you had to type a full search term, hit return, and hope for the right results. Now results appear instantly as you type, helping you see where you’re headed, every step of the way.




Wednesday, September 29, 2010


The word Rupee is derived from the Sanskrit word RAUPYA meaning "silver" or "made of silver"

On March 5, 2009 the Indian government announced a contest to create a symbol for the rupee. During the year 2010's Union Budget, Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee mentioned that the proposed symbol would reflect and capture the Indian ethos and culture. Five symbols were shortlisted, and the Cabinet selected the definitive symbol created by D Udaya Kumar on July 15, 2010. The symbol is derived from a combination of the Devanagari letter ‘’ and English letter ‘R’. The parallel lines at the top (with white space between them) make an illusion to the tricolor and also depict an equality sign which symbolizes the nation's desire to reduce economic disparity. The Indian government will try to adopt the symbol within six months in the country and globally within 18 to 24 months. Before the adoption of the symbol, the most commonly used symbols for the rupee were Rs, Re or if the text was in an Indian language, then an appropriate abbreviation in that language.



Monday, September 27, 2010

The Scientific Meaning of Gayatri Mantra

Gayatri mantra has been bestowed the greatest importance in Vedic dharma.

This mantra has also been termed as Savitri and Ved-Mata, the mother of the Vedas


The literal meaning of the mantra is:

O God! You are Omnipresent, Omnipotent and Almighty, You are all light. You are all Knowledge and Bliss. You are Destroyer of fear, you are Creator of this Universe, and You are the Greatest of all. We bow and meditate upon your light. You guide our intellect in the right direction.

The mantra, however, has a great scientific importance too, which somehow got lost in the literary tradition. The modern astrophysics and astronomy tell us that our Galaxy called Milky Way or Akash-Ganga contains approximately 100,000 million of stars. Each star is like our sun having its own planet system. We know that the moon moves round the earth and the earth moves round the sun along with the moon. All planets round the sun. Each of the above bodies revolves round at its own axis as well. Our sun along with its family takes one round of the galactic center in 22.5 crore years. All galaxies including ours are moving away at a terrific velocity of 20,000 mile s per second.

And now the alternative scientific meaning of the mantra step by step:


BHUR the earth, BHUVAH the planets (solar family), SWAH the Galaxy. We observe that when an ordinary fan with a speed of 900 RPM (rotations per minute) moves, it makes noise. Then, one can imagine, what great noise would be created when the galaxies move with a speed of 20,000 miles per second. This is what this portion of the mantra explains that the sound produced due to the fast-moving earth, planets and galaxies is Om. The sound was heard during meditation by RISHI VISHVAMITRA, who mentioned it to other colleagues. All of them, then unanimously decided to call this sound Om the name of God, because this sound is available in all the three periods of time, hence it is set (permanent). Therefore, it was the first ever revolutionary idea to identify formless God with a specific title (form) called UPADHI. Until that time, everybody recognized God as formless and nobody was prepared to accept this new idea. In the GITA also, it is said, "OMITI EKAKSHARAM BRAHMA", meaning that the name of the Supreme is OM, which contains only one syllable (8/12). This sound Om heard during SAMADHI was called by all the seers NADA-BRAHMA a very great noise), but not a noise that is normally heard beyond a specific amplitude and limits of decibels suited to human hearing. Hence the RISHIS called this sound UDGITH musical sound of the above, i.e., heaven. They also noticed that the infinite mass of galaxies moving with a velocity of 20,000 miles/second was generating a kinetic energy = 1/2 MV2 and this was balancing the total energy consumption of the cosmos. Hence they named it PRANAVAH, which means the body (VAPU) or store house of energy (prana).


TAT that (God), SAVITUR the sun (star), VARENYAM worthy of bowing or respect. Once the form of a person along with the name is known to us, we may locate the specific person. Hence the two titles (UPADHI) provide the solid ground to identify the formless God, VISHVAMITRA suggested. He told us that we could know (realize) the unknowable formless God through the known factors, viz., sound OM and light of suns (stars). A mathematician can solve an equation x2+y2=4; if x=2; then y can be known and so on. An engineer can measure the width of a river even by standing at the riverbank just by drawing a triangle. So was the scientific method suggested by VISHVAMITRA in the mantra in the next portion as under.


BHARGO the light, DEVASYA of the deity, DHEEMAHI we should meditate. The RISHI instructs us to meditate upon the available form (light of suns) to discover the formless Creator (God). Also he wants us to do JAPA of the word OM (this is understood in the Mantra). This is how the sage wants us to proceed, but there is a great problem to realize it, as the human mind is so shaky and restless that without the grace of the Supreme (Brahma) it cannot be controlled. Hence VISHVAMITRA suggests the way to pray Him as under.


DHIYO (intellect), YO (who), NAH (we all), PRACHODAYAT (guide to right Direction). O God! Deploy our intellect on the right path.


The Earth (BHUR), the Planets (BHUVAH), and the Galaxies (SWAH) are moving at a very great velocity, the sound produced is OM (the name of formless God) That God (TAT), who manifests himself in the form of light of suns (SAVITUR) is worthy of bowing/respect (VARENYAM). We all, therefore, should meditate (DHEEMAHI) upon the light (BHARGO) of that deity (DEVASYA) and also do chanting of OM. May He (YO) guide in right direction (PRACHODAYAT) our (NAH) intellect (DHIYO).

Thanks to the original Writer.



Thursday, September 23, 2010

Apple iPad


An iPad showing its home screen


Apple Inc.




Tablet media player/PC

Release date

Wi-Fi model (U.S.):
April 3, 2010 (2010-04-03)
Wi-Fi + 3G Model (U.S.):
April 30, 2010 (2010-04-30)
Both Models (Nine more countries): May 28, 2010 (2010-05-28)

Units sold

3 million (as of 22 June 2010 (2010 -06-22)[update])

Operating system

iOS 3.2.2 (build 7B500) Released August 11, 2010; 41 days ago (2010-08-11)


Internal rechargeable non-removable 25 W·h (90 kJ) lithium-polymer battery


1 GHz Apple A4

Storage capacity

Flash memory
16GB, 32GB, or 64GB models only


256 MB DRAM built into Apple A4 package (top package of PoP contains two 128 MB dies)


1024 × 768 px (aspect ratio 4:3), 9.7 in (25 cm) diagonal, appr. 45 in2 (290 cm2), 132 PPI, XGA, LED-backlit IPS LCD


PowerVR SGX 535 GPU


Multi-touch touch screen, headset controls, proximity and ambient light sensors, 3-axis accelerometer, magnetometer




Wi-Fi (802.11a/b/g/n)
Bluetooth 2.1 + EDR
Wi-Fi + 3G model also includes: UMTS / HSDPA (Tri band–850, 1900, 2100 MHz)
GSM / EDGE (Quad band–850, 900, 1800, 1900 MHz)

Online services

iTunes Store, App Store, MobileMe, iBookstore, Safari


242.8 mm (9.56 in) (h)
189.7 mm (7.47 in) (w)
13.4 mm (0.53 in) (d)


Wi-Fi model: 680 g (1.5 lb)
Wi-Fi + 3G model: 730 g (1.6 lb)

Related articles

iPhone, iPod touch (Comparison)


The iPad is a tablet computer designed and developed by Apple. It is particularly marketed as a platform for audio and visual media such as books, periodicals, movies, music, and games, as well as web content. At about 700 grams (25 ounces), its size and weight are between those of most contemporary smartphones and laptop computers. Apple released the iPad in April 2010, and sold 3 million of the devices in 80 days.

The iPad runs the same operating system as the earlier iPod Touch and iPhone, albeit a slightly older version. It can run its own applications as well as ones developed for the iPhone. Without modification, it will only run programs approved by Apple and distributed via its online store.

Like iPhone and iPod Touch, the iPad is controlled by a multitouch display — a break from most previous tablet computers, which used a pressure-triggered stylus. The iPad uses Wi-Fi or a 3G mobile data connection to browse the Internet, load and stream media, and install software. The device is managed and synced by iTunes on a personal computer via USB cable.

Media reaction to the device has generally been neutral or positive, with more positive reaction after the device was launched. Additionally while is aimed at consumers it has also seen uptake by business users.

Back of the iPad Wi-Fi

iPad in the iPad Keyboard Dock

Storage and SIM

The iPad was released with three options for internal storage size: a 16, 32, or 64 GB flash drive. All data is stored on the flash drive and there is no option to expand storage. Apple sells a camera connection kit with an SD card reader, but it can only be used to transfer photos and videos

The side of the Wi-Fi + 3G model has a micro-SIM slot (not mini-SIM). Unlike the iPhone, which is usually sold locked to specific carriers, the 3G iPad is sold unlocked and can be used with any compatible GSM carrier. Japan is the exception to this, where the iPad 3G is locked to Softbank. In the U.S., data network access via T-Mobile's network is limited to slower EDGE cellular speeds because T-Mobile's 3G Network uses different frequencies.

The iPad in its case

Optional accessories

Apple offers several iPad accessories, including:

  • iPad Keyboard Dock with hardware keyboard, 30-pin connector, and audio jack
  • iPad Case which can be used to stand the iPad in various positions
  • iPad Dock with 30-pin connector and audio jack
  • iPad Dock Connector to VGA Adapter for external monitor or projector
  • iPad Camera Connection Kit including a USB Type A connector adapter and an SD card reader, for transferring photos and videos
  • iPad 10W USB Power Adapter with 2 A output (10 W)


The iPad comes with several applications, including Safari, Mail, Photos, Video, YouTube, iPod, iTunes, App Store, iBooks, Maps, Notes, Calendar, Contacts, and Spotlight Search. Several are improved versions of applications developed for the iPhone.

The iPad syncs with iTunes on a Mac or Windows PC. Apple ported its iWork suite from the Mac to the iPad, and sells pared down versions of Pages, Numbers, and Keynote apps in the App Store. Although the iPad is not designed to replace a mobile phone, a user can use a wired headset or the built-in speaker and microphone and place phone calls over Wi-Fi or 3G using a VoIP application. The iPad has lots of third party applications available for it; as of September 1, 2010 there were 25000 iPad specific apps on the AppStore.


Like other iOS Devices, the iPad can be "jailbroken", allowing applications and programs that are not authorized by Apple to run on the device. Once jailbroken, iPad users are able to download many applications previously unavailable through the App Store via unofficial installers such as Cydia, as well as illegally pirated applications. Apple claims jailbreaking voids their factory warranty on the device in the United States.

Books, news, and magazine content

Reading a book on the iPad

The iPad has an optional iBooks application that can be downloaded from the App Store, which displays books and other ePub-format content downloaded from the iBookstore. For the iPad launch on April 3, 2010, the iBookstore is available only in the United States. Several major book publishers including Penguin Books, HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster and Macmillan have committed to publishing books for the iPad.

In February 2010, Condé Nast Publications said it would sell iPad subscriptions for its GQ, Vanity Fair and Wired magazine’s by June. In April 2010, The New York Times announced it will begin publishing daily on the iPad.

Major news organizations, such as The Wall Street Journal, BBC, and Reuters have released iPad applications, to varying degrees of success.