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Research

Relying on intrigue to survive

Issue Date: May 31, 1993
THIS IS probably one of nature's most intriguing survival games, involving two innocent players and a cunning third who eventually outwited.

Rice politics ignores Asian socio-cultural base

Author(s): Bibek Debroy
Issue Date: May 15, 1993
THE SUB-TITLE of the book: Research Strategies and IRRI's Technologies Confront Asian Diversity (1950-1980) says what the book is all about.

Moon keeps Earth's tilt in check

Issue Date: May 15, 1993
WERE IT not for the Moon, the climate on Earth would be dramatically different, say French geophysicists who have studied the effect on climate of the Earth's obliquity. The term refers to the angle through which Earth's spin axis leans away from the perpendicular to its orbital plane. The obliquity influences the amount of annual solar radiation reaching the Earth's surface at a given latitude, and thus, its seasons.

Is Mt Everest the tallest peak?

Author(s): Prakash Khanal
Issue Date: May 15, 1993
SCIENTISTS are using the latest equipment and most modern techniques to measure to an accuracy of 10 cm the height of Mt Everest and test the validity of an American astronomer's announcement in 1987 that Mt K2 (Godwin Austen) is the world's highest peak.

Paper wasps early casteists

Issue Date: May 15, 1993
WASPS, bees and ants are known to live in highly organised colonies with an elaborate division of labour among the occupants, who are separated into different "castes", each performing specific functions, and who are also physically different and with a rank in colony hierarchy.

New fruit of jam

Issue Date: May 15, 1993
SOME HIMALAYAN species of Ficus -- the genus to which the pipal and the banyan belong -- yield fruit that have high nutritive value and are excellent for making into jams and jellies. Scientists say these species should be considered favourably for social and agroforestry programmes.

Turning on the sexually fastidious female

Issue Date: May 15, 1993
HUMANS are not the only animal species to possess a sense of beauty. Recent research bears out the controversial view of 19th century British naturalist Charles Darwin that animals have an eye for beauty. He offered this as an explanation for the preference of females for the gaudiest males.

Higher royalty payments offered as bait to MNCs

Author(s): Nitya Jacob 
Issue Date: May 15, 1993
THE GOVERNMENT has decided to allow higher royalty payments than its present 8-per cent ceiling, on a case-by-case basis, to improve the quality of technology being imported. Finance secretary Montek Singh Ahluwalia says royalty payment norms are being reviewed, indicating a change of heart that hopefully will reassure multi-national companies (MNCs) that have shied away because of the current practice of imposing the low ceiling for five years.

Penguins gauge sea resources for scientists

Issue Date: Apr 30, 1993
STRUTTING and swimming through the Antarctic, some emperor penguins are working on a scientific mission: monitoring the sea resources of the polar region.

Computers set to conquer language barriers

Issue Date: Apr 30, 1993
EVEN AS European Community researchers are developing a powerful computerised translation system that promises to break through language barriers, scientists in Japan, Germany and USA are working on a telephone translation system whose implications for world trade are mind-boggling. Both systems are reportedly in the test stage.
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