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Topic Reading-Vol.2302-7/31/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
A New Zealand company tried a four-day work week. It was a 'resounding success'
Why do most people work five days a week? Is that because a one-day weekend is too short, or a three-day weekend is too long? Is a five-day work week the most effective or convenient for workers and management teams? Do you produce more, or at least the same, when you have a three-day weekend?
These are difficult questions to answer. So, one company in New Zealand tested four-day work weeks for two months to find out if shorter work days is better for its employees and for the company. They were paid the same salary even for shorter work hours but were expected to produce the same outputs. The results were astonishing. The employees reported higher productivity, better work-life balance, and lower stress levels during the test period. Did they work longer on working days, or did they become more productive?
Enjoy reading and learn how people could manage their jobs in reduced work days.


Topic Reading-Vol.2301-7/30/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Is sparkling water as hydrating as regular water?
As shown in Vol.2291 on July 20th, over two-thirds of your body is water. And nearly every part of your body depends on water to function. Water is needed to flush out toxins from the liver, bring vital nutrients to the cells, and keep the ears, nose, and throat humming along smoothly.
Indeed, water is essential for humans. Though it’s pretty much depending on your weight and age, activities, and conditions, at least two litter of water is needed to avoid dehydration. That sounds like a lot of water to drink. The good news is that water can be taken from fruits and vegetables, such as cucumber, spinach, watermelon, and strawberry. All these contain 90% or more water by weight. So, if you eat a vegetable or fruit salad, you also had a good water intake for your body. And if drinking just plain water is tiring, you can substitute it with plain or flavored carbonated water.
It is in the middle of summer in the northern hemisphere. Water is vital for survival.
Enjoy reading and learn a few options to take enough water.


Topic Reading-Vol.2300-7/29/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
World Bodypainting Festival: Models transformed into amazing artworks
This body painting festival is held annually in Klagenfurt, Austria. The 20-year-old festival offers opportunities the art of body painting for growth and networking through interaction with local art initiatives and the cultural institutions of the region. There are awards in 12 different categories, such as airbrushing, special effects and face painting.
What is unique and distinct about this art festival is that it’s not just artists’ painting human models, but the painted and decorated models are also part of the artwork. In that sense, it may be more like a fashion show rather than a conventional art festival.
Enjoy seeing the stunning photos and think if you want to see the festival next year.


Topic Reading-Vol.2299-7/28/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Open offices make people talk less and email more
What makes people interact more with each other in a workplace? Of course, the objective is not to have people waste their time chatting gossips or just for fun but to create more productive and innovative solutions for their tasks through interactions and collaborations.
However, according to a survey that monitored individuals’ behaviors in open offices, simply putting people in an open space seems unlikely to achieve the objectives, but rather it is distractive to individuals’ productivity. That’s because such an environment could deteriorate privacies and concentration on their work. Also, open office environment seems to make employees more defensive. That’s understandable because you may not feel secure if there are no boundaries around you.
Enjoy reading and think what the best way is to make a productive workplace, or what kind of workplace you want to work in.


Topic Reading-Vol.2298-7/27/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Prime Day was the biggest shopping event in Amazon's history
It is a one-day only, though it was extended to 36 hours this year, global shopping event exclusively for Amazon Prime members. It marked the biggest sales event for the online giant, exceeding the tabs of any other sales event like Cyber Monday, Black Friday, or its previous year’s event. It was estimated that the sales would go over three billion dollars, but the exact amount hasn’t been disclosed. However, the company claims that it has sold over 100 million products worldwide. If this was the biggest online sales event in the U.S., it also shows how big China’s biggest sales event, Singles’ Day is. The Chinese online platformer sold $25 billion within 24 hours on November 11 last year, a hefty increase of 40% from the previous year.
Amazon wanted to add more prime members and sell more own products like Kindle and Amazon Fire TV stick. Prime members need to pay a membership fee to get various benefits like free delivery at desired times, free video streams and reading contents. The membership fee varies by country. For example, only $36 annually in Japan and $119 in the U.S.
Who takes advantage of the sales event like this, the buyers, the sellers or both?
Enjoy reading the article and mark the event day on your calendar.


Topic Reading-Vol.2297-7/26/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
The secret tricks hidden inside restaurant menus
Menu engineering. Indeed, some restaurant menus of large chains or prestigious restaurants are carefully engineered to present their food items more attractive and enticing. They want their diners to choose more profitable dishes, drinks, and desserts. There are many ways to serve the purpose. One typical way is to use descriptive names, such as homemade pancakes, farm-raised salmon, and freshly baked bread. Another way to enhance diners’ appetite is to use proper font types, colors, and sizes of the letters shown in the menu. For example, rounder typefaces sell more sweets while angular fonts represent salty or sour taste. Also, orange or read stimulate appetite, the favored colors by fast food chains, while green represents healthier diet. Furthermore, today’s and emerging technologies allow restaurants to create a tailor-made menu and recommendations when you visit the restaurant again.
However, if you remember the report in Vol.2232, “Why you eat more when you’re in company,” what seems to affect the most, or at least, to eat more is to have dining companions.
Enjoy reading the article and think about what stimulates your appetite the most.


Topic Reading-Vol.2296-7/25/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Photographers capture the rise of South Korea's 'loner' culture
Their parents worked hard to build the economic foundation of the country. In return, many of them were able to afford to buy things they had wanted, such as home appliances, a car, and even a house. In the meantime, the cost of housing and education have been rising to the level where parents opted to have fewer children. In fact, South Korea’s birth rate had dropped from around six down to only 1.2 during the last half-century. The country is rapidly aging like its neighbor Japan.
The influences of such changes in the social environment seem immense. More and more those single children seem to be used to being alone and even feel more comfortable by themselves than being with others. They don’t seem to mind eating, living, or even traveling alone. Such individualistic culture is called honjok, a combined word of hon, alone, and jok, tribe. While such trend has created new businesses to accommodate their need and desire, such as dining space for lone eaters and specialized furniture and apartment for singles, the outlook for economic growth and the social foundation is becoming questionable. When more people chose to live alone, what will happen to the marriage, divorce, and fertility rates of the country that is already aging?
Enjoy reading the article and seeing the photos of loners in South Korea.


Topic Reading-Vol.2295-7/24/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Indonesia mob slaughters nearly 300 crocodiles in revenge killing
Another threat to an endangered species in Indonesia. It seems that many people tend to act for immediate benefits or by emotional instinct. The world’s largest island country, with more than thirteen thousand islands, is trying to protect endangered species like orangutans and crocodiles. But as shown yesterday’s Volume 2294, more trees and forests are being destroyed for the sake of economy and as a result, the intelligent primate species are losing their habitats. Now, nearly 300 protected crocodiles in a state-run sanctuary in West Papua were all slaughtered by the local residents with knives, shovels, hammers, and clubs in retaliation for a local man thought to have been killed by one of the crocodiles from the site. Even though those villagers broke the law and will be charged, the perished reptiles will never come back.
Read the article and see the disgusting photo and think what human nature is about.


Topic Reading-Vol.2294-7/23/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
A battle to save Indonesia's orangutans
The orangutans are species of great apes native to Indonesia and Malaysia but they are now only found in the rainforests of Borneo and Sumatra. As they live in the trees and eat fruits mostly, forests are their natural habitat. There used to be nearly 300,000 orangutans in the wild, but the most recent estimate says there are only around 100,000 of them and the number is rapidly decreasing. Indeed, they are one of the most critically endangered species.
Despite the Indonesian government’s attempt to protect the wild forests in the area where the remaining endangered species inhabit, development projects haven’t been ceased yet. The investors claim that they had put so much money already, and people want jobs, too. Local farmers in the area also want to use the land for their living.
The population of Indonesia is 267 million for now and is going to add another 100 million in the next decade while the population of wild orangutans is expected to be halved in the same period.
Though Orangutans are among the most intelligent primates, they don’t seem to be able to figure out how to cope with the intrusion by other primates.
Enjoy reading the article and think when humans learn to balance economy and ecology.


Topic Reading-Vol.2293-7/22/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Humanoid robot runs through the park by itself
Atlas is a bi-pedal humanoid robot developed by an American robotics company. The 1.8-meter tall robot was funded by Uncle Sam and first unveiled in 2011. It is designed for search and rescue tasks both outdoors and inside buildings. It uses multiple sensors to balance, avoid obstacles, assess the terrain, help with navigation, and manipulate objects. The robot can turn 180 degrees while jumping, perform a backflip, and run across grass on an uneven terrain. If it wore clothes and disguised itself as a human athlete or soldier, it would be hardly suspected if it were a machine.
SpotMini is a small, four-legged civilian-use robot that weighs 30 kilograms including the arm. It can navigate offices, climb stairs, open doors and even fight off a human armed with a hockey stick. The robot also can pick up and carry a payload of up to 14 kilograms. This amazing robot will become on sale in 2019. Though the price tag hasn’t been announced yet, the robot seems to have received good interests from the world.
If you get an AI-speaker and one of these robots, you’ll probably be living in a world where science fiction writers had dreamed of.
Enjoy watching the video and imagine when you’ll have one of those robots in your house to do the housework for you.


Topic Reading-Vol.2292-7/21/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
On sale in Australia: Avocados as big as your face
The avocado is the fatty fruit of the avocado tree, which is native to Mexico and Central America. The fruit consists of 73% water, 15% fat, 8.5% carbohydrates (mostly fibers), and 2% protein. Avocados are rich in minerals and vitamins, such as vitamin B, C, E and K. Avocados fat is monounsaturated fatty acids, mainly oleic acid, which may help protect against heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Besides all these nutritious and health benefits, avocados go so well with any kind of food that they are now used widely in all food menus around the world. As the demand for avocados rises, suppliers are trying to increase production. Planting more trees is one way to produce more avocados and enlarging the size of the fruit is another solution. Now, Australian farmers are growing jumbo avocados, nicknamed "Avozillas," about five times as large as a regular one, without sacrificing any taste or nutritious benefits. They now probably are the most fat-and-calorie-rich fruit in the world.
Enjoy seeing the video and photos and think of a new recipe to make use of this giant avocado.


Topic Reading-Vol.2291-7/20/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
How much water should I drink a day?
As you probably know that over two-thirds of your body is water. There is no doubt how important water is to keep your body in good shape. You need to take enough water not to be dehydrated, a drop below normal levels of water in the body, especially when you work or exercise outside in a hot temperature, or when you suffer from diarrhea or vomiting.
How much water is enough to keep your physical and mental health? That’s depending on your age and gender, body weight and activities, and the temperature and humidity. Also, some food contains more water than others, such as steamed rice, fruits, and vegetables. Overall, two litters of water is needed to keep you healthy. The question is how to measure how much more water is needed? One easy and dependable way is to check the color of your urine. When it is light yellow or clear, you’re OK, but when it becomes darker, you ought to take more water, immediately. But too much water is no good either because the salt level in your blood goes too low.
Enjoy reading and learn how to keep your hydration level in balance.


Topic Reading-Vol.2290-7/19/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Can the Middle East solve its water problem?
If you see a world map, there are noticeable places like the Middle East and North Africa where there is no or very little part if any painted green. People in the region basically get water from rivers and the underground, but that supply has been exceeded by the growing need. While their population is growing faster, the water supply in the region is getting scarce. Some of those countries are fortunately so oil-rich that they can afford to build and run expensive sea-water purifiers, or desalination plants. However, that process is harmful to the environment because of the energy needed to evaporate water and discharged chemicals and brine, water saturated with salt, into the sea.
According to a recent World Bank report, water is getting scarce in the region, and water conservation, production, and consumption are all essential to balance the supply and need.
Enjoy reading the article and learn about the situation of global water supply.


Topic Reading-Vol.2289-7/18/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
KLM's new airport robot Care-E will guide you to the gate
Wouldn’t it be a luxury if you had a personal guide to the boarding gate in the airport? Celebrities and special passengers are often assisted by their agents or airline staff. But most passengers have to find the way to the gate with their carry-on luggage, sometimes with playful children or a crying baby. It is quite a task especially in a large airport whose boarding gates are located so far away from the check-in counters. And what if the boarding gate or departure time is changed but you can’t hear or understand the announcement?
Now, there is another way to make use of smart robots in airports. A Dutch airline KLM has introduced a passenger assisting robot called Care-E to guide their passengers to the gate. The AI robot walks you to the gate at a normal walking speed and carries your luggage. Also, it’ll redirect you should the boarding gate is changed. All you need to do is to scan your boarding pass, no need to listen to or speak Dutch or English.
Enjoy watching the video and think what other service or assistance you want robots to do to help you in the airport.


Topic Reading-Vol.2288-7/17/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
The truth about only children - why the stereotype is wrong
If every couple had only one child, the world would go extinct in the future. In fact, the world fertility rate, the average number of children born to one woman while being of child-bearing age, declined from 2.57 to 2.45 between 2005 and 2015. In some Asian countries particularly like China, Japan, and South Korea are losing their populations because of the low fertility rate and the trend doesn’t seem to change sometime soon despite the measures and actions being taken by their governments. There are various factors why couples in those countries choose not to have more than one child, such as high education cost, late marriages, housing costs, and lack of support to raise children. Anyway, the world is producing more only children than ever before in human history. But is an only child so distinct from siblings in their behaviors, characteristics, and temperament? Population Research Center of the University of Texas conducted a research and made a brief video about their findings.
Enjoy watching the video and think about what an only child is like in the family, at school, and in a workplace compared with siblings.


Topic Reading-Vol.2287-7/16/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Millennials may be less happy and healthy than their parents by middle age
While gig economy gives young people chance to manage their time flexibly, it seems to cast a shadow over their future, according to a recent study among adults in the U.K. who were born in the 1980s or early 1990s. Of course. Without job security, how could anyone feel secure about their daily living and future career development? The study also has found that the rising housing market makes the young adults less hopeful about their future.
Along with these economic uncertainties, those grownups with digital devices and online social network also seem emotionally unstable. They feel difficult to establish social relationships with others and communities.
With all these modern convenience and future ambiguity, the researchers think millennials in the UK are not as happy or healthy as their parents in the next decade or two. But weren’t their parents so happy when they were young? What about a fear of nuclear war, infectious disease or air pollution?
Enjoy reading the article and think if you’re happier than your parents’ generation.


Topic Reading-Vol.2286-7/15/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Can plastic roads curb waste epidemic?
Plastic lasts for long. Unlike paper or wood materials, plastic isn’t biodegradable. So, when it is wasted, its durability causes a big problem to the environment. But what if plastic is used as material to last for long?
A British Company came up with an idea and recipe to make use of used plastic, such as plastic bottles, diapers, carrier bags. The idea is to blend used plastic with asphalt to be used for road construction and repairs. They claim when used plastic is cooked at a right temperature and mixed at a right proportion with asphalt, the blended asphalt lasts longer than conventional asphalt. This plastic-blended asphalt has already been used in the UK, the Gulf, Canada, Australia and New Zealand.
Sounds like a brilliant idea to solve the plastic problems, doesn’t it?
Enjoy reading and learn how a problem can be turned into a solution.


Topic Reading-Vol.2285-7/14/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
How your age affects your appetite         
Do you eat only when you are hungry? Probably not. In reality, most people live to clock or schedule in modern life and they eat regularly, sometimes despite or beyond the need or appetite.
Do you eat as much as you want or only the foods you like? If you eat alone, you could choose what to or not to eat within the budget, according to the availability and by convenience.
Do you like eating alone or with others? Many people tend to eat more when they dine together because it is part of a social engagement. They take longer time to eat and as a result, they eat more. Also, when others are eating, you feel like eating too even though you’ve eaten more than enough than usual. After all, food isn’t just for energy and nutrition.
Did you eat more or less 10 years ago? People should be more cautious about food intake and balance as when they start losing muscles gradually from the 50s.
After all, while good appetite is regarded as the best sauce for food, what and how much to eat seem to be more essential to human lives. And that is likely to change as one ages.
Enjoy reading and think what your eating strategy for the next decade.


Topic Reading-Vol.2284-7/13/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
How long could we live?
What is an appropriate question to ask about life, just how long to live or live a healthy life? Some may say as long as they can because they can’t think of dying while others say as long as they are healthy and active. Some researchers think people can live much longer, say hundreds of years. Tech investors are putting money on researches on longevity. Genetic research and engineering, advanced medical technologies and treatment, and healthier diet and lifestyle may someday prolong the lifespan by years or even decades. But in what physical, cognitive and mental conditions?
It seems that beyond technologies and treatment, there are essential factors that keep the life more enjoyable and meaningful, such as physical activities, social connection, and mental stimulation.
How long do you want to live?
Enjoy reading the text and think what would make you want to live longer.


Topic Reading-Vol.2283-7/12/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Affirmative action: Trump 'to scrap' college racial bias policy
Preferential treatment to a certain group of people could mean unfair treatment to others, even though it was intended to maintain the diversity of the academic environment. Ever since an executive order to give preferential treatment to a disadvantaged group of people on federal hiring was signed by JFK back in 1961, affirmative action has been debated intensely especially for college admission guidelines. For example, students of affluent Asian-American families tend to score higher grades and advance to higher education because of their families’ intense focus on education compared with those of Latinos and African Americans families. As a result, prestigious universities like Harvard, whose admission rate is as low as 6%, have more qualified applicants from certain racial and family backgrounds over others. So, they set non-explicit guidelines to keep the diverse environment on their campus, which has made Asian-American students feel unfair.
While the world is becoming more diverged, the gap between the rich and poor seems to be widening and become overwhelming. And in the U.S., this topic is so controversial that each administration seems to have taken different actions.
Enjoy reading and think what is fair to all, opportunity or result.


Topic Reading-Vol.2282-7/11/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
South Korea cuts its work limit from 68 hours a week to 52
How much is hardworking and how long is overworking? South Korean workers seem to work too long. On average, they worked over 2,000 hours in 2017, the third-longest after Mexico and Costa Rica among OECD countries. That’s nearly 50% longer than its economic rival, Germany. Why do they work so long? Is that a way to show their loyalty to their employers or to compete with their co-workers? Are they all so ambitious to be successful in their careers or is that because of their collective culture?
Working long hours could cause physical, mental and social problems. Productivity and efficiency decrease, the stress level goes up and mistakes and errors increase, and fertility rate declines. In fact, an average Korean woman has only 1.2 children, the society is rapidly aging.
So, the lawmakers finally made a drastic move by limiting the maximum work hours per week from 68 to 52, a staggering 24% reduction!
Will this abandon a place for a retreat like “prison for people seeking peace and quiet”?
Enjoy reading and think what makes people work harder and longer.


Topic Reading-Vol.2281-7/10/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Koko, the gorilla who mastered sign language, has died
She was a female western lowland gorilla born and grown in California. She was named Hanabiko, meaning fireworks child in Japanese, because she was born on the fourth of July. She understood 1,000 English words and communicated with 2,000 Gorilla Sign Language, a modified version of American Sign Language (ASL).
Koko demonstrated not only her intelligence to humans but also maternity to her pets. In fact, she adopted five kittens in her life. She named them All Ball, Lipstick, Smoky, Miss Black and Miss Grey respectively and cared for them as if they were baby gorillas. When she was signed that the first adopted cat was killed in a car accident, she signed "Bad, sad, bad" and "Frown, cry, frown, sad".
Indeed, Koko showed cognitive abilities and emotional capacity of the gorilla. She passed away unexpectedly but peacefully in her sleep about two weeks before her 47th birthday.
Enjoy reading and learn what a gorilla can do.


Topic Reading-Vol.2280-7/9/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
First confirmed image of the birth of a planet
Far away from our solar system in the Centaurus constellation, a newborn yet still forming planet was discovered. By using a coronagraph to block the light from the young dwarf star PDS 70 light, two teams of researchers captured an image of the disk and the planet. It is a gigantic gas planet that is at least a few times the mass of Jupiter, but it takes 120 years to orbit its star because of the distance from the star that is equivalent as the one of Uranus. Despite the distance, the newly forming planet is over twice as hot as our hottest planet, Venus.
You may wonder why this discovery is so significant. That’s because the processes behind early stages of planetary evolution have never been clearly observed. If such observation is realized over time, we might be able to learn how the earth was formed 4.6 billion years ago.
Enjoy reading and learn about this baby planet that is 200 million light years away from earth.


Topic Reading-Vol.2279-7/8/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Beer is being rationed in the UK
Is carbon dioxide, or CO2, good or bad? While it mustn’t increase in the air to curve global warming, carbon dioxide is necessary for our daily lives.
CO2 prolongs shelf life of food like meat because it slows the growth of bacteria. Without it, the shelf life becomes at least a day shorter. It is also used to stun chickens and port before slaughter. And CO2 gas carbonate drinks like water, cola, and beer. Can you imagine non-carbonated cola or beer?
So, what if there was a shortage of commercial and industrial CO2? In fact, some beer brewers in the U.K. were left no choice but to allocate the amount of beer to deliver to their retailers because they were unable to secure enough CO2 to keep up with their production. Also, some meat producers are using electric stunning instead before slaughtering cattle and chickens.
Indeed, modern lifestyle produces and uses CO2 a lot.
Enjoy reading and learn what CO2 does to our lives.


Topic Reading-Vol.2278-7/7/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
International Asteroid Day: Are we ready if an asteroid strikes Earth?
Have asteroids struck our planet? Yes, many times. Most recently, a 20-meter near-earth object, or NEO, entered the atmosphere and exploded over Russia in 2013 and caused substantial damages to a town called Chelyabinsk. The light from the meteor was brighter than the Sun and the energy released by the impact was about 30 times of that of the atomic bomb detonated at Hiroshima. And of course, there was an asteroid of the size of a mountain that hit earth 66 million years ago wiped out 80% of life on earth including most of the dinosaurs.
So, when will the next impact like that occur? Fortunately, there aren’t any known or detected NEOs that could post an immediate, significant threat as of now. Though a number of asteroids hit our planet every day, most of them are so small that they burn up in the atmosphere. But there are more and larger asteroids that could cause a significant damage or even catastrophe to the planet. NASA has been working with other space agencies of the world trying to detect and predict any sign of life-threatening collision. They are hoping to give a pre-warning of such event as early as 10 years before the impact.
Is a 10-year notice too short or too long? What about announcing a year before next election?
Enjoy reading and learn about space objects near Earth.


Topic Reading-Vol.2277-7/6/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Hunting the people who kill elephants
Poachers catch and kill animals illegally on someone else's land to get valuable parts of them, such as elephant’s ivory and scale and Rhino’s horn, which are used to produce decorative items, leather, and medicine. Since the demand for such items is high compared to the supply, they are highly valued and traded in the black market. So, there are poachers who hunt elephants and rhinos in Africa. Though the number of such animal killers isn’t large, they can kill quite a few numbers of such wildlife animals. In fact, according to a 2014 study, the population of elephants in central Africa dropped by 64% only in 10 years.
Also, there are people and organizations that transport such valuable items to markets of demand, such as China and Southeast Asia. Unfortunately, as the economy of these countries grows, so does the number of poaching of elephants and rhinos.
Killers, traffickers, and sellers. They are all part of the supply chain of killing wildlife animals. And of course, there are buyers who reward them for their risks and work with money.
Enjoy reading and think about which part of the chain the cause of this cruel practice really is.


Topic Reading-Vol.2276-7/5/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Horses can make facial expressions just like humans
It has been 5,000 years since horses became human companions like dogs and cats. To live with creatures that have numbers of facial and vocal expressions like humans, horses seem to have learned to read what humans are feeling from their expressions. They seem to understand an emotional state of a particular human and remember it. So, when the person shows up later again, the horse’s reaction is relevant to the previous expression of the person. If you want to be liked by a horse, you’d better be nice to him just like your friend.
Another finding from a recent research shows that they make as many as 17 facial expressions, three more than chimpanzees and only 10 fewer than humans. These expressions include "chin raiser," "sharp lip puller," "lip pucker" and "jaw drop." If you learn their facial expressions and show your emotional states clearly, you might be able to communicate with horses quite extensively.
Enjoy reading and learning how sensitive horses are with humans.


Topic Reading-Vol.2275-7/4/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
China's 'heat pole' bakes as temperature hits 83 C
Though just being too hot doesn’t attract people, the extreme heat seemed to have drawn numbers of visitors to the middle of nowhere in the desert. Turpan Flame Mountain in Xinjiang Uygur autonomous region, also known as the heat pole of China, recorded 83 degrees Celsius on June 25th. The sand and rocks had been baked during the day to reach the highest temperature of the year at 4:00 pm. Over 2,500 curious or eager visitors got there to feel the heat, and also to take photos in front of the 12-meter-tall jumbo thermometer, which can measure up to 100 degrees. The extreme heat bakes not only the land surface but also the eggs in a cooking pan. Sounds like hot-spring boiled eggs, doesn’t it?
Would you be interested in feeling the natural heat? What would your skin say?
Enjoy reading the article and see the photos and think if such experience is worth your time and money.


Topic Reading-Vol.2274-7/3/2018

Topic Reading-Vol.2274-7/3/2018
Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Uber's Mideast rival is hiring women drivers in Saudi Arabia
The Kingdom of Saudi Arabia has been the last country that prohibits women to drive.
It took over 80 years for women to get permission to drive but now they can get a driving license only after a 30-hour training. The demand seems to have been very high. Over 120,000 women applied for new licenses. So, businesses are trying to keep up with the booming demand, such as driving school and car companies.
And there is another one trying to lure new drivers. The peer-to-peer ride-sharing business. Careem, the Middle East's rival to Uber, is recruiting women to switch their seats. Yes, female ride-sharing drivers. It could be a good business opportunity because many women, or even some men for curiosity, may prefer riding a newly-joined female-driven car.
Will they charge a higher fee for a female driver if demand surges? Will male drivers lose their jobs?
Enjoy reading and think what other businesses might arise in the conservative kingdom.


Topic Reading-Vol.2273-7/2/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
Supreme Court upholds travel ban
Another sign of the Divided States of America. The US supreme court ruled that the President Donald Trump’s travel restrictions to travelers from the designated countries is within the scope of executive responsibility. They are Syria, Libya, Iran, Yemen, Somalia, North Korea, and Venezuela. You can tell easily that these are the countries that have been producing quite a number of refugees in recent years.
The highest court was as divided as the sentiment of the people in the country, five-to-four, which means that if just one of the judges had had a different thought, the decision could have been different. The President seemed to be so pleased with the ruling that he tweeted immediately that the ruling was a tremendous victory for the American people and the constitution (and for him).
Enjoy reading and think what the President would have tweeted if the supreme court decision had been other way around.


Topic Reading-Vol.2272-7/1/2018

Dear MEL Topic Readers,
McDonald's and Starbucks hit by plastics ban in India
As covered in Vol.2264, the world praised the progressive move by a Swedish furniture retailer to voluntarily abandon the sale or use of single-use plastics. On the other hand, US restaurant and coffee chains seem to suffer from damages both in the bottom line and brand recognition for not complying the laws that ban the use of single-use plastics, such as shopping bags, food containers, straws and lids for drinks and cutlery.
In fact, India is trying to eliminate single-use plastics by 2022 being alarmed by the research result that plastic is expected to weigh heavier than fish in the oceans by the middle of the century. Restrictions or bans on single-use plastics are already in place in most of the states, even though not all of them are strictly enforced.
If such bold initiatives to protect the environment can be taken in this massive democratic yet developing country, why other more established or developed countries, such as Japan and the US, haven’t taken any actions yet?
Enjoy reading and think if growing populism among democratic countries helps political leaders make a move to save the environment and the planet in a long term.