chinadaily.com.cn 2018-11-14 16:33
>Books, money are good gifts
Researchers from the National University of Singapore and the University of Chicago conducted six experiments asking people about giving and receiving gifts. They found gift-givers prefer those expected to produce smiles or gasps of joy, but people receiving them prefer gifts that will make them happy over the long-term. When the researchers asked 80 people for their favorite gifts, books and money came out among the top for satisfaction, despite causing little in the way of smiles or squeals. Further analysis of 198 people and 600 Christmas gifts found tools like a cordless drill often get little reaction but provide high satisfaction. Frivolous items like cupcakes produce a good reaction but low satisfaction. Another experiment found gift-givers preferred personalized mugs but people given them preferred less thoughtful ergonomic ones designed to be easy to use.
>Flight times extended
Plane journeys are taking longer than a decade ago, according to a report that claims the change is down to airlines "padding" their schedules to create the impression passengers were reaching their destinations on time. Carriers are adding extra time to flight schedules, in some cases up to 30 minutes, to ensure they maintain punctuality and are therefore less likely to be liable for compensation payouts, the investigation by UK consumer group Which? claimed. Researchers examined average flight times for 125 routes operated by large airlines in 2009 and compared them with last year. They found that 76 routes, 61%, were now slated to take longer. Airlines said their aircraft were flying at slower speeds to reduce fuel consumption and that this allowed them to offer cheaper fares. British Airways also told Which? that air traffic congestion was a factor, with European skies now much busier than 10 years ago.
>Berlin Wall to be 'rebuilt'
A group of artists said Tuesday they're planning to build a facsimile of the Berlin Wall around a downtown Berlin block in mid-October. Visitors of the art installation must buy "visas" online starting at 15 euros. When entering the walled area, they'll have to exchange their cellphones for a smartphone which will provide individual instructions for a tour including documentaries, exhibits or concerts. The artists' group DAU, which is behind the project, says it wants to distribute between 1,500-3,000 "visas" per day. Inside the walled block, there also will be viewing platforms from which visitors can peer outside into Berlin - in contrast to the Cold War platforms where people could peek into East Berlin from the West. The wall will be torn down on Nov 9 - 29 years after the original Berlin Wall came down.
>Repellents not working
Fifty mosquito repellent products, including mosquito repellent patches and wristbands, prove to be of little help, said Beijing quality supervision authorities after conducting sample tests recently. Bought from online and offline stores, these new mosquito repellent products, with price tags varying from 5.2 to 66 yuan, all boasted a plant-based formula with a long effective duration for babies and pregnant women. The test result is disappointing. Scientists noted that the dose of citronellol (香茅醛), an oil used for keeping insects away, in mosquito repellent products is the key factor in assessing its effectiveness. Among the 50 samples, 14 of them did not have citronellol, while the rest reportedly had the ingredient but at amounts below the standard.
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