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Topic Reading-Vol.3954-2/7/2023

Dear, MEL Topic Readers,
After over 10 years of daily posting, the Topic Reading needs a break for the next few weeks.
Please be patient until the next volume is posted.
Thank you,
The Author


Topic Reading-Vol.3953-2/6/2023

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Does having a teen feel like living with a chimpanzee? You may not be far off, study shows
Adolescents tend to have emotional and behavioral problems. They try new things, take risks, and develop their ideas and identities as their brains seek out new experiences and information. What about chimpanzees, our closest cousins? A new study on adolescent chimps, aged between eight and 15 in a 50-year life span, at a sanctuary in the Republic of Congo showed that they take risks and tend to be more impulsive than grown-up adults. In the meantime, contrary to human counterparts who tend to choose an immediate reward, adolescent chimps are as patient as their adults to get a better reward. Are human adolescents less mature than chimps of the same age group?
Enjoy reading the article and learning about how to deal with aggressive and impatient adolescents.


Topic Reading-Vol.3952-2/5/2023

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Ideology of hate’ consuming India, Gandhi’s great-grandson says
Around 80% of India’s population are Hindus and 14% are Muslims. Although India’s constitution guarantees freedom of religion, there have been occasional religious conflicts, particularly against Muslims by Hindus. 75 years ago, India’s founding father, Mahatma Gandhi was assassinated by a Hindu extreme nationalist Godse, who opposed to Gandhi’s advocacy for Hindu-Muslim unity and his support for a separate Muslim state (Pakistan) during the Partition of India. The assassin was tried, sentenced to death, and executed in 1948. Even though the Indian government and many mainstream political parties have condemned any attempt to glorify Godse or justify his actions, Godse’s act has been admired by Hindu nationalists. In fact, a temple dedicated to the assassin was built near New Delhi in 2015.
Now, Gandhi’s great-grandson is very much worried about the rising Hindu nationalism pushed by PM Narendra Modi and his political party (BJP).
Read the article and learn about what is going on in the world’s largest democratic and most diverse secular nation.


Topic Reading-Vol.3951-2/4/2023

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Weight loss surgery extends lives, study finds
Obesity, defined as an excessive fat accumulation of a person whose body mass index (BMI) is 30 or higher, is both a health and medical problem that increases the risk of diseases like heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, and cancers. Is obesity a moral failing or a biological problem? As each person has different genetic characteristics, managing weight is unique to the individual. It is like a mixture of genetics, culture, environment, social practices, lifestyles, and health conditions. Along with weight loss medications and lifestyle changes, weight loss surgery is another solution to cure this health problem. A new 40-year study found that bariatric surgery, which involves making changes to the digestive system to help lose weight, indeed reduces the risk of premature death, especially from obesity-related conditions such as diabetes, cancer, and heart diseases. What kinds of surgeries could help lose weight? Are they safe? Did those who underwent the surgery all become happier?
Enjoy reading the article and learning about what weight loss surgery is like and how it helps people with obesity.


Topic Reading-Vol.3950-2/3/2023

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
McDonald’s is testing a new strawless lid
Starbucks replaced plastic straws with plastic sippy cup lids for cold drinks in 2020, except for Frappuccinos and creamy drinks in an effort to reduce the use of plastic waste. It took a little longer for the world’s fast food giant McDonald’s to follow the suit, but not entirely. Plastic straws can still be provided upon customers’ request. While Starbucks also has been replacing plastic straws with paper or other biodegradable straws across the world, McDonald’s has been slower to adopt plastic alternatives. The brand color of Starbucks is green and McDonald’s is red/yellow. The headquarters of the coffee chain is located in progressive, environmentally sensitive Seattle while the sandwich restaurant chain is headquartered in Chicago, a conservative Midwestern area. Also, the customer profile of the trendy, stylish coffee chain differs from the fast food restaurant. They seem to have different levels of sense of urgency toward the environment. Whichever the case might be, there must be better solutions than plastic lids.
Enjoy reading the article and learning about how these two world’s largest food/coffee chains are working on reducing plastic waste.


Topic Reading-Vol.3949-2/2/2023

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
ChatGPT passes exams from law and business schools
You might have used a chatbot, or chatterbot, an online chat conversation via text or text-to-speech, to get information, instructions, or solutions instead of a human agent. Launched in late  November last year, ChatGPT (Generative Pre-trained Transformer) is an advanced chatbot developed by OpenAI. It has been used to generate essays, stories, and song lyrics in response to what a user asks. Recently, ChatGPT answers and essays were graded by university professors. Surprisingly, they passed exams in graduate schools for law and business. This could mean that any student can use the Ai app not only to answer questions but also to write essays and reports. The app definitely shortens the time for research, studies, and even document creation. 

For example,
Question: Which indicator is more accurate to predict the future growth potential of a corporation, PBR or ROE?
ChatGPT: Both the price-to-book ratio (P/B ratio) and the return on equity (ROE) are financial ratios that can be used to evaluate a corporation's growth potential. However, they measure different aspects of a company's financial performance and provide different information.
The P/B ratio compares a company's market capitalization to its book value, which is the value of the company's assets minus its liabilities as reported on its balance sheet. A lower P/B ratio indicates that a company's stock is undervalued relative to its book value, which could be a sign of potential future growth.
Return on equity (ROE) is a measure of how well a company is generating profits from its shareholders' equity. It is calculated by dividing net income by shareholder's equity. A higher ROE indicates that a company is more efficient at generating profits from its shareholders' investments, and it can be used as a sign of a company's potential for future growth.
Both P/B ratio and ROE are important indicators to evaluate a company's financial performance, but they provide different information. P/B ratio gives an idea about the company's valuation and ROE measures the efficiency of the company in generating profits from shareholders' investments. It's important to look at both indicators along with other financial metrics like revenue and earnings growth, debt levels, etc. to get a comprehensive picture of a company's financial health and potential for future growth.

Enjoy reading the article and learning about the potential of ChatGPT.


Topic Reading-Vol.3948-2/1/2023

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Earth’s inner core may have stopped turning and could go into reverse, study suggests
The Earth is made up of three different layers, the crust, the mantle, and the core.
The crust is the outside layer of the earth and is made of solid rock. There are two types of crust; oceanic and continental. The oceanic crust is denser and thinner and mainly composed of basalt, a type of black rock that comes from a volcano.  The continental crust is less dense, thicker, and mainly composed of granite, a very hard, grey, pink, or black rock.
The mantle lies below the crust and is nearly 3,000 km thick.  It consists of hot, dense, iron and magnesium-rich solid rock. The crust and the upper part of the mantle make up the lithosphere, which is broken into tectonic plates, both large and small.
The core is the center of the earth and is made up of two parts: the liquid outer core and the solid inner core. The outer core is a solid ball with a radius of about 1,200 km, which is about 20% of Earth's radius or 70% of the Moon's radius. It is made of nickel, iron, and molten rock, and temperatures there can reach up to 50,000 C. The solid inner core is situated about 5,000 km below the Earth's crust and is separated from the liquid outer core, which allows the inner core to rotate at a different speed from the rotation of the Earth itself.
Now you are ready to read the article about the movement of Earth’s inner core.
Enjoy reading the article and learning about the structure of our planet.