Here's what should be on your reading list this weekend

We replug five stories from our magazine and website that will keep you busy over the long weekend

GN Bureau | April 13, 2017


#Internet   #Digital India   #Syria   #Health   #Railways   #Weekend Stories  


Thanks to the high-speed broadband connectivity, practicals and complex subjects are taught using YouTube at the school. “Life-saving activities like heart pumping during a cardiac arrest can’t be taught theoretically. It has to be demonstrated. The internet makes this possible,” says Alka, a vocational training teacher at the school. For many students, the computer class is the only time when they get to browse the internet. Only a few lucky ones have family members with smartphones. “I was working on a school project on cancer. The textbook gives us a brief idea about it. But then there are so many types of cancer. There is so much information out there. To answer questions during the viva (verbal exam), you need to know more,” says Komal, a class 12 biology student and medical aspirant. Her father, who works in Chandigarh, sometimes buys monthly data packs when she requests; otherwise her only access to the internet is at the school. Read: How internet is penetrating remote-hilly areas


As the 59 American Tomahawk missiles lit up the dark skies, smashing Syria’s Shayrat air base near Homs, the collective conscience of the “civilised world” was assuaged. Some called it a “humanitarian act”. More bizarrely, MSNBC anchor Brian Williams had poetic ruminations as the footage of the missiles showering on the war-torn country was released. “We see these beautiful pictures at night from the decks of these two US navy vessels in the eastern Mediterranean,” Williams said. “I am guided by the beauty of our weapons,” he added, quoting Leonard Cohen. The Syrian state news agency said that nine civilians, including four children, were killed.
Read: The great Syrian war game



But Champaran was the one that provided a template for Gandhi’s future campaigns in India.
It was just his luck that his first major political action after returning to India was to come in a place he had barely heard of, involving a commodity – indigo – about which he knew little. What he went on to demonstrate over several months in the magnolia forest, or Champa Aranya, was purely the methodology of Civil Disobedience. Read: Gandhi gave a master class in political action 100 years ago


A young Indian surgeon doing his senior residency in Boston University in the US has a new tool to fight cancer of the esophagus. It is a tiny stringed brush hidden in a capsule and can be swallowed. Later it can be pulled out to check for signs of the disease in the patient.
Read: Pop his capsule, and it’ll screen you for cancer


Since November last year, India has witnessed three horrible railway accidents, two near Kanpur and one in Andhra Pradesh. They claimed more than 200 lives. Railway experts feel the casualties could have been far fewer had Linke Hofmann Busch (LHB) carriages been used on the trains instead of conventional ones: LHB coaches have comprehensive safety features that prevent carriages from telescoping into each other should a derailment happen. They are also designed to reduce the chances of their capsizing.
Read: Now coupled to safety

 

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