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(Thinkstock)
(Thinkstock)

Want to see how good a lover you are? Strap on this app Add to ...

Speaking of bad ideas

The Guardian technology blog lists “Passion” as one of the worst cellphone apps. “Simply open Passion, pop your phone into an armband, start having sex with something and it’ll use your movement and noise to calculate your skills as a lover. Spoiler alert: Your skills as a lover are terrible. You’re wearing an armband in bed. Look at yourself.”

Where billionaires hang out

The Economist’s ranking of world cities where billionaires live: 1. New York, 70 billionaires; 2. Moscow, 64; 3. London, 54; 4. Hong Kong, 40; 5. Beijing, 29.

Tweeting in the office

“Far too often noise can make it hard to concentrate, be it a loud television, loud traffic or loud people,” says BBC News. “But audio experts say certain sounds make it easier to focus and they include birds singing. What makes birdsong so special is that it relaxes people physically but stimulates them cognitively, says Julian Treasure, author of Sound Business and chairman of noise consultancy The Sound Agency. Birdsong creates a state he calls ‘body relaxed, mind alert.’ ‘People find birdsong relaxing and reassuring because over thousands of years they have learned that when the birds sing they are safe. It’s when birds stop singing that people need to worry.’ … Treasure has used birdsong to develop a free smartphone app called Study. It claims to be a ‘productivity-boosting’ soundscape to listen to while you work.”

Desperate to quit smoking

A California woman slapped a policeman in the face – because she wanted to be locked up to help her give up smoking, reports Orange News U.K. Etta Lopez, 31, is charged with assaulting a police officer following her drastic bid to quit her habit in Sacramento. Deputy Matt Campoy was leaving his shift at the Sacramento County Jail when the woman purposely blocked his way. “It was totally unprovoked,” he said. “All of a sudden she stepped into me and slapped me in the face.” Police say Lopez admitted she sat in front of the county jail for hours, intent on assaulting an officer to get arrested and put in jail, where she would be forced to stop smoking.

Bookstore owner makes good

“The appearance of a granddaughter of Mao Zedong, founding father of Communist China, on a list of the country’s richest citizens prompted online accusations of hypocrisy Thursday,” reports Agence France-Presse. “Kong Dongmei, now in her early 40s, and husband Chen Dongsheng ranked 242nd, with personal wealth estimated at five billion yuan ($823-million) on a list released this month by New Fortune, a Chinese financial magazine. Kong is the granddaughter of Mao and his third wife He Zizhen. In 2001, she founded a bookstore in Beijing selling publications about Mao and promoting Red Culture after studying at the University of Pennsylvania.”

Growing, living lights

“Fancy reading by the light of a houseplant? Backers of a campaign on funding site Kickstarter could soon get the chance,” says the New Scientist. “Building on work that led to lamps made from genetically engineered bioluminescent bacteria, Antony Evans and others behind the Glowing Plant Project have added genes for bioluminescence to the genome of thale cress (Arabidopsis thaliana). This plant might one day light up our homes and cities. At the moment, the plants only give off a dim glow, but using plants as a light source could eventually be a sustainable alternative to electric illumination.”

Thought du jour

“He who knows others is learned. He who knows himself is wise.”

Lao Tzu, Chinese philosopher (6th century B.C.)

 

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