Share Email Pinterest Share on Facebook Religiosity is associated with lower levels of proneness to boredom, according to new research published in the scientific journal Emotion.“Studies show that boredom propels people to seek for activities that are more fulfilling; acts that offer a sense of purpose and meaning. It follows that activities or beliefs that people feel gives them a sense of purpose should help to prevent getting bored. Yet, surprisingly, this had never been tested,” said study author Wijnand A.P. Van Tilburg of King’s College London. “We looked at religiosity because religious people tend to describe their beliefs as offering them a sense of meaning in life. Besides that, religion is of course an incredibly widespread phenomenon worldwide and affects many people. So, we were interested if religiosity, a source of meaning in life for many, might prevent boredom.” Share on Twitter LinkedIn “The research had a secondary, more subtle, but nonetheless interesting purpose: If boredom normally makes people search for new purpose or meaning, then could it be that religiosity, through reducing boredom, indirectly prevents people from doing so?”Across three separate studies, with nearly 1,500 participants in total, the researchers found that religious people tended to feel less bored, which in turn was associated with a lower inclination to search for meaning compared to non-religious people. The participants included Christians, Agnostics, Atheists, Jews, Buddhists, Muslims, and Hindus.Non-religious people who were subjected to a mundane task — transcribing an excerpt about lawn mowing — tended to report higher levels of boredom. They were also more likely than religious people to say they wanted to do something of greater significance.“By reducing boredom, religiosity indirectly tempered the ‘quest’ for meaning,” van Tilburg told PsyPost. “To be clear: this does not mean that religious people do not search for meaning in their lives. Rather, the findings suggests that, counter-intuitively, religious people are less inclined to search for meaningful alternatives in situations where others would feel bored.”Religious people were more likely to perceive life as more meaningful to start with, which was in turn associated with less boredom. “The finding that a seemingly minor, everyday life, and mundane experience as boredom connects two variables of such existential and cultural significance as religiosity and meaning in life is, in our view, profound,” van Tilburg said.“The finding that boredom links these two variables showcases how relevant ‘mundane’ emotions are in people’s quests for making sense of their existence, simultaneously further grounding the psychology religiosity and meaning in ‘mundane’ life and revealing boredom as actor with a more significantly role than it is traditionally given.”But the study includes some caveats.“No single study or even series of studies can fully address complicated phenomena such as religiosity, meaning in life, and boredom. For example, people differ in the way they practice their religion: some may focus particularly on the social and community activities that come with it, whereas others may focus more on using religion as a guide through their lives,” van Tilburg explained.“In our research we have not yet made such important distinction. Could it be that the role of religiosity in reducing boredom depends on how people put their religion in practice? Furthermore, our studies focused mostly (though not exclusively) on Christians. Are there differences across religions? These are questions we have yet to find the answers to.”Previous research conducted by van Tilburg found a link between boredom and political extremism. “Throughout this and our other research we consistently find that boredom offers many surprises. It may seem like a mundane perhaps even trivial unpleasant experience but it turns out that it fulfills important psychological and social roles,” he added. “Boredom ‘wakes us up’ by stirring a desire for challenge and more meaningful activity. It propels people towards activities that they believe offer a sense of purpose and this can lead to a range of unexpected outcomes, including derogation of outsiders, retrieving self-soothing nostalgic memories, and turning to more extreme political views.”The study, “Bored like Hell: Religiosity reduces boredom and tempers the quest for meaning“, was authored by Wijnand A. P. van Tilburg, Eric R. Igou, Paul J. Maher, Andrew B. Moynihan, and Dawn G. Martin.
New MERS case recorded in Jeddah, Saudi ArabiaSaudi Arabia’s Ministry of Health (MOH) reported a new MERS-CoV case today in the city of Jeddah. The notice came in an epidemiologic week 20 notification.The patient is a 73-year-old man. The source of his MERS-CoV (Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus) infection is listed as “primary,” meaning it is unlikely he contracted the virus from another person. He did, however, have recent contact with camels.Saudi Arabia has confirmed 139 MERS cases so far this year. May 14 MOH report CDC tracks 19 more E coli cases linked to ground beef, 196 totalThe Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) yesterday recorded 19 more cases in an Escherichia coli O103 outbreak linked to tainted ground beef, bringing the outbreak total to 196 cases in 10 states.Seven of the newly confirmed cases involved a hospital stay, raising the hospitalization total to 28 case-patients. So far, no deaths have been recorded in this outbreak, but two case-patients have developed hemolytic uremic syndrome, a type of kidney failure.Kentucky has the most cases, with 69, followed by Tennessee (55), and Georgia (49). Ohio has 12 cases, Florida has recorded 5, Virginia has had 2 cases, and Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, and Mississippi have each confirmed 1 case.On Apr 24, Grant Park Packing of Franklin Park, Illinois, recalled approximately 53,200 pounds of raw ground beef products. The beef was distributed to restaurants. The day before, K2D Foods, doing business as Colorado Premium Foods in Carrolton, Georgia, recalled 113,424 pounds of ground beef.Symptom onset in patients began from Mar 1 to Apr 19, the CDC said. Any cases that occurred after Mar 21 may not yet be reported. May 13 CDC update CARB-X to fund development of new antibiotic for MDR AcinetobacterCARB-X announced today that it will award Swiss biopharmaceutical company Debiopharm International up to $2.1 million in funding for the development of a new class of antibiotics to treat hospital-acquired pneumonia caused by multidrug-resistant Acinetobacter baumannii.The money will support work on Debio1454, an antibiotic that inhibits bacterial fatty acid biosynthesis in A baumannii, which has been designated as a priority pathogen by the World Health Organization. Disrupting this mechanism can weaken bacterial cell membranes and the cell wall and ultimately lead to cell death.”Debiopharm’s Debio 1454 project represents an exciting new class of antibiotics, that if successful and approved for use in patients, could save lives and be a huge step forward in the global fight against drug resistance,” CARB-X executive director Kevin Outterson, JD, said in a press release.Debiopharm, of Lausanne, Switzerland, could receive an additional $1.6 million if additional project milestones are met. It’s the second grant the company has received from CARB-X (the Combating Antibiotic Resistant Bacteria Biopharmaceutical Accelerator).May 14 CARB-X press release Flu starting early in some Southern Hemisphere countriesWith flu activity tapering off in most of the Northern Hemisphere, illness levels are already rising in some part of the Southern Hemisphere—especially southern Australia and South Africa—marking an early start to the season, the World Health Organization (WHO) said yesterday in its latest global flu update.In Australia, H3N2 is the dominant strain. According to an Australian Broadcasting Corporation (ABC) report, South Australia state has reported 17 flu deaths this season, 13 of them in nursing home residents.According to the WHO report, Saudi Arabia is the only western Asia/Mideast country in which flu levels are still elevated. In eastern Asia, flu activity is still high in northern China and retreating from a second peak in South Korea, mainly led by influenza B. Most southern Asia countries reported low overall levels, except for Bangladesh, which is seeing cocirculation of 2009 H1N1 and influenza B viruses.Globally, for the last half of April, 60.2% of viruses tested were influenza A and 39.8% were influenza B. Of the subtyped influenza A viruses, 67.7% were H3N2 and 32.3% were 2009 H1N1.May 13 WHO global flu update May 12 ABC News report Study: Lab accidents are potential polio threatAs the global eradication of poliovirus draws nearer, accidental exposure from laboratory accidents pose a small but significant threat to eradication goals, according to a study yesterday in Emerging Infectious Diseases.Researchers, prompted by a 2017 lab accident in the Netherlands, conducted a literature review to see how often poliovirus specimens had been accidentally mishandled or released into the community. The authors cite several poliovirus lab incidents in the 1940s and 1950s but focus on the three decades since the World Health Assembly resolved to eradicate polio.Since 1988, seven incidents were recorded, including accidental exposures among lab workers and the release of infectious particles into the Belgian sewer system. Almost all incidents took place at vaccine manufacturing sites.Though infrequent, the incidents serve as “a stark reminder” that achievements toward polio eradication are fragile, the authors said.”With the global discontinuation of type 2 OPV [oral polio vaccine] for routine and supplemental immunization in April 2016 and the planned cessation of all OPV use in the next 4–5 years,” the authors conclude, “such release of polioviruses from facilities into the community will become a greater public health concern because population immunity wanes in settings of high population density, poor hygiene, and suboptimal immunity (e.g., tropical developing countries) after OPV withdrawal, increasing the potential for transmission.” May 13 Emerg Infect Dis study
It was green, white, gold . . . and bays all over on Saturday.Spectators turned out in full force along Ponquogue Avenue and Montauk Highway in Hampton Bays for the Ancient Order of Hibernians’ 14th annual St. Patrick’s Day parade. Longtime Hibernian and County Laois Irishman Grand Marshal Fergus Scully kicked off the festivities. The parade featured mainstays such as the Eastern Long Island Police Pipe and Drum Band of Southampton, as well as local dancing schools, community groups, and even a politician or two. Share
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SeaBird Exploration Plc has nominated Åge Korsvold as the new Chairman, after Henrik Christensen decided to step down.The Nomination Committee has performed a search of suitable candidates, and has resolved to propose that Mr. Åge Korsvold is elected as new Chairman. The proposal has been discussed with Mr. Christensen, the Board of Directors and certain principal shareholders, who support such proposal. Åge Korsvold is currently a board member of i.a. Timex Group B.V., Sapa AS, Green Resources AS, and Aweco Invest AS. Previous engagements include roles as CEO of Orkla, Kistefos and Storebrand.Given that the proposal for a new Chairman of the Board of Directors has already been agreed, Mr. Christensen, the Board of Directors and the Nomination Committee have agreed that there is no reason to postpone implementation of the proposal until the annual general meeting, scheduled for 13 May 2014. On such basis, the Board of Directors has resolved to call for an extraordinary general meeting where it is proposed to change the Board of Directors as indicated above.If the proposal is approved, the Board of Directors will consist of Åge Korsvold (Chairman), Kitty Hall, Kjell Mathiassen, Melvin Teigen and John Olav Økland. The Nomination Committee proposes no change to the remuneration currently payable to the chairman of the Board, however, so that in the event that the work of the Chairman exceeds 10 full working days per year, the Chairman shall be entitled to invoice the Company an additional amount for each such full working day. The Nomination Committee will issue its formal recommendation in due course.Press Release, March 12, 2014
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control period. The rest will be added to the company’s Regulatory Asset Base for CP4 starting on April 1 2009, and repaid out of future access charges. Winsor emphasised on March 10 that the reprofiling was conditional on the first issue of bonds under NR’s securitisation programme being completed by December 31 2004. Bookbuilding has already started for a £10bn bond issue. This Medium-Term Notes programme has been backed by a ’letter of comfort’ from the Department for Transport. Winsor also required SRA to relinquish its ’control’ over Network Rail policy which might have brought NR debts within the government’s Public Sector Borrowing Requirement. The relationship between Network Rail, SRA and the Regulator has been clarified by a letter from DfT (right). After the transitional period, fixed track access charges for the franchised Train Operating Companies will double from just under £900m to around £1·8bn a year with effect from April 1 2006. ORR has recalculated the access charges for each TOC to reflect investment and renewals work planned on each part of the network.SUBSTANTIAL increases in track access charges for use of the UK rail network have been deferred by two years, following an agreement between Network Rail and Rail Regulator Tom Winsor announced on March 10. Supported by the government, the deal means that around 60% of the company’s income over the next five years will be paid as direct grant by the Strategic Rail Authority.Access charges for the passenger franchises had been due to double fom April 1 under the terms of a new five-year regulatory Control Period 3. Following an interim review last year, Winsor increased the amount that Network Rail will be allowed to spend on maintenance and renewal of the infrastructure (RG 1.04 p8). However, the need to compensate operators for the sudden increase would have exceeded SRA’s budget. Under the latest compromise, track access charges will be held at current levels for the next two years. Deferring the increase will create a revenue shortfall of around £1·5bn a year, which NR will cover through a £3·1bn increase in borrowing. Of this, a third is to be paid back over the rest of the control period. The rest will be added to the company’s Regulatory Asset Base for CP4 starting on April 1 2009, and repaid out of future access charges. Winsor emphasised on March 10 that the reprofiling was conditional on the first issue of bonds under NR’s securitisation programme being completed by December 31 2004. Bookbuilding has already started for a £10bn bond issue. This Medium-Term Notes programme has been backed by a ’letter of comfort’ from the Department for Transport. Winsor also required SRA to relinquish its ’control’ over Network Rail policy which might have brought NR debts within the government’s Public Sector Borrowing Requirement. The relationship between Network Rail, SRA and the Regulator has been clarified by a letter from DfT (right). After the transitional period, fixed track access charges for the franchised Train Operating Companies will double from just under £900m to around £1·8bn a year with effect from April 1 2006. ORR has recalculated the access charges for each TOC to reflect investment and renewals work planned on each part of the network.Relationships clarified’The jurisdiction of the SRA is separate from that of the Rail Regulator. It neither overlaps nor competes with that of the Rail Regulator. The two authorities have common statutory purposes. They have separate and complementary jurisdictions. ’Apart from the accountability of its Board to its members, Network Rail’s principal accountabilities are to its train operator customers, under access contracts and the network code, and to the Rail Regulator under statute and the company’s network and station licences. The SRA monitors and enforces the consumer protection conditions of Network Rail’s licences. The Rail Regulator is independent of government, whereas the SRA is a non-departmental public body.’The Secretary of State attaches considerable importance to the independence of Network Rail, as a private-sector company limited by guarantee, which is accountable to its members and subject to independent economic regulation. He views as essential the commercial relationship between Network Rail and its customers, who are the operators of freight and passenger services. ’The fact that income is received in the form of grant will not affect in any way the independence of Network Rail or disturb the company’s contractual and commercial relationships. The payment of grant does not create any obligation on the part of Network Rail to the Strategic Rail Authority or any right on the part of the SRA to seek to direct or influence Network Rail.’ Letter from Department for Transport Permanent Secretary David Rowlands to Rail Regulator Tom Winsor, December 16 2003TABLE: Table I. Reprofiled Network Rail funding in CP3, úm at 2002-03 prices 2004-05 2005-06 2006-07 2007-08 2008-09 TotalNet revenue requirement 4444 4413 4245 4203 4142 21448Fixed & variable charges 1203 1219 2132 2121 2284 8959Existing grants 1262 644 544 0 0 2450New grants 448 941 1569 2082 1858 6898Borrowing to cover shortfall 1532 1609 0 0 0 3141
IRELAND: The 2030 Rail Network Strategy Review of the medium-term needs and long term vision for investment in the national rail network was published on February 22. It recommends that improvements to speed and capacity on inter-city lines should be prioritised, with electrification of the two main routes considered in the longer term.National railway Iarnród Éireann commissioned the Strategic Rail Investments Needs Review from AECOM and Goodbody in the light of the government’s new National Development plan. This will set out public investment priorities for 2012-19 in the context of Ireland’s revised economic circumstances since the financial crisis. The review focuses on long-distance and regional routes, with the Greater Dublin area to be considered separately by the National Transport Authority. The final report recommends that investment should be concentrated on links between the major cities, based on a value for money approach. A three-phase strategy is proposed, with an estimated annual spend of €215m on infrastructure and €116m on rolling stock maintenance and renewals to 2030. The first phase to 2015 would focus on ‘quick wins’ generating large returns in passenger benefits and fare revenue. These include ‘modest’ infrastructure improvements to reduce journey times on the routes from Dublin to Cork and Galway, and development of a Dublin (M50) Parkway station on the line into Heuston station where passengers would change for a bus link to the airport. If additional money could be found, further journey time improvements would enhance the benefits. Phase 2 in 2015-20 would include Portalington – Athlone double tracking to increase capacity, a DART suburban link between Clongriffin and Dublin Airport, and various upgrades which rely on growth in demand to make a satisfactory return. Phase 3 in 2020-25 includes electrification of the Cork and Galway routes, which could generate ‘significant returns’ but only if aligned with rolling stock life cycles; premature replacement of existing inter-city DMUs would reduce the economic case.Predicted demand on the Dublin – Belfast cross-border route is found to be to low to justify electrification, even if aligned with fleet renewal, but this ‘should be kept under review’. The report highlights the need to ensure that maintenance and renewal is safeguarded, to avoid assets being run down over time. A strategic decision is need to retain viable freight capacity, and public funding models devised for freight services which might not be profitable but would generate wider economic benefits. A revision of the fares structure is suggested, with a clearer split between advance and walk-on tickets, and the elimination of anomalies such as return tickets being cheaper than singles. Options for the lightly used Waterford – Limerick Junction and Limerick – Ballybrophy lines ‘range from closure to more targeted services over sections of the routes.’ Of possible new lines or reopenings, only Athenry – Tuam is proposed for further consideration. IÉ Chief Executive Dick Fearn said the economic crisis should not prevent planning for the future. ‘It would be easy in today’s environment to focus solely on short-term measures needed to ensure financial viability and the protection of existing services’, he said. ‘However, public transport in general and rail development in particular must always be considered in the medium and long-term strategic context.’
Universities are being urged to join the push to get more women into all of levels of science, Education Secretary Angela Constance said today.While meeting with leaders in the science engagement sector Ms Constance also announced plans for the recruitment of a new Chief Scientific Adviser (CSA) for Scotland and members to the prestigious Scottish Science Advisory Council (SSAC).The Scottish Government will work with key stakeholders to review the CSA role to consider how to get the maximum value from this role and to make sure the post attracts a broad field of candidates.The science engagement sector – led by Scotland’s four Science Centres and numerous festivals – appears to have a better record in gender balance than other scientific areas and the Cabinet Secretary met those involved to see what lessons could be learned.Ms Constance said:“Scotland is a world leader in science and technology and our continued investment in support for STEM teaching, learning and skills development at school, college, university and beyond is paying off with increased Higher entrants and passes in these subjects. But we need to do more to counter the historic gender imbalance.“Women remain under-represented in much of the science, technology and engineering sector, but there is a key area that has made progress in achieving a better gender balance. Earlier today I met some of the inspirational women who are leading many of our science centres and science festivals to hear their views on how they have succeeded and what more we can all do to promote STEM as a potential area of study and work for girls and young women.“I have agreed that we will work together on an action plan to ensure more can be done on such a key issue. Such a plan will clearly benefit from their expertise and I am very grateful for their input.“Having women in senior, visible roles help to show girls and young women that choosing science can open up a range of career possibilities. That is why it is so important to appeal to a wide range of experts as scientific advisers to government.“I am writing to all university Principals and the Presidents of our learned societies to encourage them to work with us to ensure we recruit a new Chief Scientific Adviser that will deliver for Scotland. This critical role will reflect our commitment to drawing on the very best scientific advice and expertise.“We will also soon advertise for new members of our highest level group of independent science advisers – the SSAC. It has the potential to add real value in all policy areas connected to science, and the SSAC will also keep Ministers informed about new technologies and other scientific developments.“I am keen to see a diverse pool of potential candidates for the SSAC and the CSA post. If we are to continue to be a leading science nation we need to have all our talent contributing to public life. But we also need to make sure that we enable talented girls and young women to pursue their goals.” AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to FacebookFacebookFacebookShare to TwitterTwitterTwitterShare to LinkedInLinkedInLinkedInAction to encourage gender balance at all levels as new science advisers sought.
Ducati has unveiled yet another great variant to the Multistrada 1200 Enduro especially for those adventure riders who are eager to get some off-road fun that is the Pro Edition. What’s already a great package to begin with has been garnished with a few extra bits to make it more awesome when going on those off-road adventures.The latest Multistrada Enduro evolution features a sand colourway with rough surface finish, front end and tank cover. The 1200 Enduro Pro also comes with a two-tone seat and blacked out sub-frame, clutch and alternator covers to give the Pro an even more durable and tough facade.Just to make sure that your off-road adventures won’t go down in the drain due to poorly-chosen tyres, Ducati has thrown in a set of Pirelli SCORPION™ Rally tyres which fit as standard on the Multistrada Enduro’s wheels. These dual-purpose tyres from Pirelli not only offer great grip on unpaved areas but also provide some respectable performance on the asphalt as well.The biggest highlight of them all has got to be the type-approved Ducati Performance titanium exhaust courtesy of pipe expert, Termignoni. There’s also the Ducati Performance bull bars complimented with LED lights from Touratech and a lower screen for better visibility.Apart from all these, the new 2017 Multistrada Enduro Pro shares the same characteristics as the normal (but highly innovative) Multistrada 1200 Enduro. Some of the key points in why the Enduro and Enduro Pro are more than capable machines are the super tough frame together with its Ducati 1,198cc Testastretta DVT Euro4-approved engine which pumps out 160hp and 136Nm of torque.There’s also the selectable riding mode to fit any of your riding criteria or conditions such as Enduro, Touring, Sport and Urban. On the safety aspects, the Enduro Pro also comes with ABS Cornering, Cornering Lights (DCL), Ducati Traction Control (DTC), Ducati Wheelie Control (DWC) and the semi-active Ducati Skyhook Suspension (DSS) Evolution system with 200 mm of wheel travel all come as standard, as does Vehicle Hold Control (VHC) for smooth uphill starts.To ensure smooth riding, Ducati has thrown in the electronic speed control and Bluetooth module as standards which allow riders to access their phones when connected via the Ducati Multimedia System. All of these can be done by using the switchgears positioned on the handlebar which will then relay all the necessary information to the rider using the TFT dashboard.To recap, the new 2017 Multistrada 1200 Enduro Pro special features are:Sand colourDedicated two-tone seatBlack rear sub-frameBlack alternator and clutch coverLow screenDucati Performance tubular steel tank bars by Touratech with supplementary LED lightingDucati Performance titanium silencer by Termignoni, type-approvedScorpion Rally tyresStandard features of the Multistrada 1200 Enduro which are also available on the Pro include:Ducati Testastretta DVT engineBosch Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU)Bosch-Brembo ABS 9.1ME Cornering braking systemElectronic cruise controlRiding ModesDucati Multimedia System (DMS)Ride-by-Wire Power Modes (PM)Ducati Wheelie Control (DWC)Ducati Traction Control (DTC)Vehicle Hold Control (VHC)Sachs semi-active electronic suspension (front and rear): Ducati Skyhook Suspension (DSS) Evolution systemFull LED headlight with Ducati Cornering Lights (DCL)Dashboard with full-TFT 5” colour screenCentre stand–Ads– Ducati has introduced the latest 2017 Ducati Multistrada Enduro Pro which has been geared to be more tough and adventure-ready.The Pro features a new Sand-themed colourway, two-toned seat, Ducati Performance bull bar, Termignoni titanium exhaust and many more.The Enduro Pro will be available in the UK market soon with a price tag of £18,995 (around RM102,797 after direct conversion).