盐城哪个医院不孕不育好放心问答

明星资讯腾讯娱乐2019年07月16日 05:10:34
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Science and technology科学技术Mining asteroids小行星采矿Going platinum小行星采矿—淘铂去Mining metals from asteroids seems a bonkers idea. But could it work?小行星采矿这想法听似疯狂,但行得通吗?CAN reality trump art? That was the question hovering over the launch on April 24th, at the Museum of Flight in Seattle, of a plan by a firm called Planetary Resources to mine metals from asteroids and bring them back to Earth.4月24日,行星资源公司在西雅图的航天物馆启动了一项计划—在小行星上采矿并将矿物带回地球。对这项计划,人们一直都在疑惑:现实能否战胜艺术?It sounds like the plot of a film by James Cameron—and, appropriately, Mr Cameron is indeed one of the companys backers.这听着就像詹姆斯卡梅隆的电影中的情节—恰好,詹姆斯卡梅隆实际上就是这家公司的赞助人之一。The team behind the firm, however, claim they are not joking.但是公司背后的团队宣称小行星采矿这事可不是在开玩笑。The companys founders are Peter Diamandis, instigator of the X Prize, awarded in 2004 to Paul Allen and Burt Rutan for the first private space flight, and Eric Anderson, another of whose companies, Space Adventures, has aly shot seven tourists into orbit.行星资源公司的创始人是X奖发起者Peter Diamandis和拥有太空探险公司的Eric Anderson。Larry Page and Eric Schmidt, respectively the chief executive and the chairman of Google, are also involved.GOOGLE的总经理Larry Page和董事长 Eric Schmidt也参与其中,So, too, is Charles Symonyi, the engineer who oversaw the creation of Microsofts Office software.曾负责监督开发微软办公软件的工程师Charles Symonyi同样是其中一分子。With a cast-list like that, it is at least polite to take them seriously.阵容如此强大,出于礼貌至少也该重视这个想法。As pies in the sky go, some asteroids do look pretty tasty.这想法虽不切实际,但有些小行星看来确实很诱人。A lot are unconsolidated piles of rubble left over from the beginning of the solar system.它们许多是由太阳系诞生时遗留下来的碎石堆成的,结构松散;Many, though, are pieces of small planets that bashed into each other over the past few billion years.但仍有很多是过去几十亿年里小行星相互碰撞产生的碎片。These, in particular, will be high on Planetary Resources shopping list because the planet-forming processes of mineral-melting and subsequent stratification into core, mantle and crust will have sorted their contents in ways that can concentrate valuable materials into exploitable ores.特别是后者将被行星资源公司优先列在其采矿清单上。因为在行星诞生时,矿物熔化之后会层化为地核、地幔、地壳;这个过程将使其中物质分门别类,令有价值的矿物浓缩成可供开采的矿石。On Earth, for example, platinum and its allied elements, though rare at the surface, are reckoned more common in the planets metal-rich core.例如在地球上,铂和铂系元素在地表上虽然罕见,但人们认为在富含金属的地核里却是较为常见的。The same was probably true of the planets shattered to make asteroids.对于那些相互碰撞后其碎片形成小行星的行星而言,情况可能同样如此。Indeed, the discovery of a layer of iridium-rich rock was the first sign geologists found of the asteroid impact that is believed to have killed the dinosaurs.实际上,地质学家们提出小行星曾撞击地球的第一个据就是发现了富含铱的岩层。人们认为恐龙就是因小行星撞击地球而灭绝的。Most asteroids dwell between the orbits of Mars and Jupiter.大部分的小行星都位于火星和木星的轨道之间。But enough of them, known as near-Earth asteroids, or NEAs, come within interplanetary spitting distance of humanity for it to be worth investigating them as sources of minerals—if, of course, that can be done economically.但近地小行星也不少,它们距离地球很近,值得勘探。当然,费用要划得来才行。First catch your hare勿谋之过早The first thing is to locate a likely prospect.首先,要找到一个可能有矿藏的小行星。At the moment, about 9,000 NEAs are known, most of them courtesy of ground-based programmes looking for bodies that might one day hit Earth.目前已探明的近地小行星约有9000颗,其中大部分是地面计划在寻找可能撞击地球的天体时探测到的。That catalogue is a good start, but Planetary Resources plans to go further.从这个范围开始寻找是很好,但行星资源公司却有更远大的计划。In 2014 it intends to launch, at a cost of a few million dollars, a set of small space telescopes whose purpose will be to seek out asteroids which are easy to get to and whose orbits return them to the vicinity of Earth often enough for the accumulated spoils of a mining operation to be downloaded at frequent intervals.该公司打算在2014年耗资数百万美元发射一组小型太空望远镜,用于寻找容易到达的、能经常回到地球附近的小行星,以便常将所采矿物送回地球。That bit should not be too difficult. But the next phase will be tougher.这一步应该不会太难,但下一步就难度更大了。In just over a decade, when a set of suitable targets has been identified, the firm plans to send a second wave of spacecraft out to take a closer look at what has been found.当该公司发现了一组适合采矿的小行星时,便计划要在短短十年多一点的时间内发送第二批宇宙飞船仔细研究一下这些小行星。This is a significantly bigger challenge than getting a few telescopes into orbit.这个挑战可比向太空中发射几个望远镜要艰巨得多。It is still, though, conceivable using existing technology.不过,利用现有的技术仍是可以实现的。It is after this that the handwaving really starts.在这之后,纸上谈兵才真正开始。Broadly, there are two ways to get the goodies back to Earth.要将所采矿物运回地球大致有两种方法。The first is to attempt to mine a large NEA in its existing orbit, dropping off a payload every time it passes by.其一是在不改变其轨道的情况下于一颗较大的小行星上采矿,在这颗小行星每次接近地球时卸下所采矿物。That is the reason for the search for asteroids with appropriate orbits.这就是为何要寻找轨道合适的小行星的原因。This approach will, however, require intelligent robots which can work by themselves for years, digging and processing the desirable material.不过,此法需要能独立工作数年的智能机器人来开采并加工有价值的矿物。The other way of doing things is for the company to retrieve smaller asteroids, put them into orbit around Earth or the moon, and then dissect them at its leisure.其二是行星资源公司改变较小的小行星的运行轨道,将其安置在环绕地球或月球的轨道上,再在有空时仔细研究之。But that limits the value of the haul and risks a catastrophic impact if something goes wrong while the asteroid is being manoeuvred.但那将减少每次采矿的量,且要承担移动小行星时出现问题而带来灾难性后果的风险。Either way, the expense involved promises to be out of this world.不论哪种方法,所需费用都一定是天价。A recent feasibility study for the Keck Institute for Space Studies reckoned that the retrieval of a single 500-tonne asteroid to the moon would cost more than .5 billion.最近,克柯太空研究所进行的一项可行性分析认为,将一颗重量为500公吨的小行星移到月球附近所耗资金将超过二十五亿美元。Earlier research suggested that, to have any chance of success, an asteroid-mining venture would need to be capitalised to the tune of 0 billion.较早前的研究指出,必须投资一千亿美元才有可能实现小行星采矿。Moreover, a host of new technologies will be required, including more-powerful solar panels, electric-ion engines, extraterrestrial mining equipment and robotic refineries.而且,还需要大量新技术,包括功率更大的太阳能电池板、电子离子引擎、太空采矿设备和自动冶炼厂。All of which can, no doubt, be done if enough money and ingenuity are applied to the project.当然,若为这个项目投入足够的资金和人才,以上种种都能实现。But the real doubt over this sort of enterprise is not the supply, but the demand. Platinum, iridium and the rest are expensive precisely because they are rare.但对于这种工程浩大的项目,人们真正质疑的并非是否有人能提供这种务,而是有没有这种需求。正因为稀有,铂、铱等矿物才价格不菲。Make them common, by digging them out of the heart of a shattered planet, and they will become cheap.若这些矿物能在一个由碎片构成的行星的地核中被开采到,它们就成了普通金属,价格也会变得便宜。The most important members of the team, then, may not be the entrepreneurs and venture capitalists who put up the drive and the money, nor the engineers who build the hardware that makes it all possible, but the economists who try to work out the effect on the price of platinum when a mountain of the stuff arrives from outer space.所以,这个团队里最重要的成员可能不是推动这项事业并参与投资的企业家和风险投资人,也不是设计实现这一目的的硬件工程师;而是当大量的铂从天外而来时,那些试图算出其对铂价冲击的经济学家。 /201402/277661Banking and crime金钱的罪恶Hitting at terrorists, hurting businesses打击恐怖,损害金融。Forcing banks to police the financial system is causing nasty side effects迫使监督金融机构会造成令人厌恶的副作用。KIDNAPPINGS for ransom, drug-smuggling, fake invoicing and extortion are just a few of the ways in which terrorists raise cash for their nefarious deeds. Some scams take advantage of globalisation: American officials found that Hizbullah, a Lebanese movement, raised funds by exporting used cars from America and selling them in west Africa.绑架勒索赎金,毒品走私,假发票和敲诈勒索只是恐怖分子筹集现金途径的冰山一角,全球化为恐怖分子资金募集提供了便利,美国官员发现一个黎巴嫩真主党运动,依靠向西非出口来自美国的二手车筹集资金。Governments are understandably keen to cut terrorists off from sources of cash, and have been taking drastic steps to punish banks for involvement in financing dangerous people. In 2012 the American authorities imposed a .9 billion fine on HS, a British bank, for lax controls on money-laundering. Big fines have been meted out to Barclays, ING and Standard Chartered for money-laundering or sanctions-busting. BNP Paribas of France is said to be facing a fine of as much as billion in America. Such stiff penalties are popular, and provide great press for ambitious prosecutors. Cut the flow of money to terrorism, their thinking goes, and it will wither.政府希望减少恐怖分子从资金来源,并已采取行动来惩罚同恐怖活动有金融活动来往的。2012美国当局向英国汇丰罚款19亿美元,原因是未能有效防控恐怖组织洗钱。巴克莱,荷兰国际集团和渣打已经由于涉嫌帮助恐怖组织洗钱或违反制裁而受到巨额罚款。法国巴黎表示,将面临来自美国10亿美元的罚款。严厉的惩罚成为涉恐案件检察官常用的手段,他们认为这样可以削减资金流向恐怖主义,这种方法是否有效还有待商榷。Yet there are two problems with this approach. First, the regulations are so demanding and the fines so large that banks are walking away from countries and businesses where they perceive even the faintest whiff of risk. American regulators, for instance, require banks to know not only who their customers are, and what they plan to do with their cash, but also the identities and intentions of their customers customers. Correspondent-banking relationships—the arteries of global finance that allow people and firms to send money from one country to another, even if their own bank does not have a branch there—are therefore collapsing. Some of worlds biggest banks privately say they are cutting as many as a third of these relationships.然而,这种方法有两个问题。第一,政策非常苛刻,罚款数额巨大,大很可能会规避可能涉及恐怖犯罪的国家和商业领域。举个例子,美国监管机构要求不仅了解他们的顾客、顾客投资的方向,而且他们客户的客户的身份信息和投资意图也需要了解。交易代理是国际金融的动脉,他们让资金在全球公司之间流动,即使他们自己的没有设计恐怖注意,却也有有因此而破产的。世界最大的一些私下里说他们切断这一部分业务的1/3。This retreat will have little impact on the rich world. Britains Lloyds Banking Group, say, will probably always transact with Wells Fargo in America or IC in China. But it could prove devastating to small, poor countries whose banks lose their big international partners just because the costs of checking up on them outweigh the paltry profits they generate. Some countries risk being cut off from the financial system altogether: British banks last year threatened to close the last pipeline for money transfers into Somalia. Others will see the costs of intermediation rise: bankers talk of a tenfold increase in fees paid to send money to countries such as Tanzania. Cotton farmers in Mali and small exporters in Indonesia will find it increasingly hard to get trade finance. Even well-known charities responding to UN calls for assistance in countries such as Syria are struggling to get banks to let them send aid.金融行业业务的缩减比如对发达国家的影响不大。英国的劳埃德集团可能会一直进行同美国威尔斯Fargo或中国中国工商的合作,但对贫穷小国家产生毁灭性打击,贫困国家的失去国际合作伙伴只是因为对这些国家涉恐审核的成本大于他们微薄的经济活动利润。一些国家为了继续国际贸易,冒着同全球金融脱离的风险:英国去年威胁要关闭到索马里的资金渠道。另外应该注意的是经济活动中间成本的增加:同坦桑尼亚这样的国家进行经济活动的成本增加了十倍。印度尼西亚的小商品出口商和马里种棉花的农民会发现越来越难获得贸易融资。甚至著名的慈善机构也在联合国寻求对叙利亚的援助。Making it harder to follow the money资金去处难以跟踪Were all of this actually preventing terrorism it might be judged a fair trade-off. Yet—and this is the second problem with this approach—it seems likely to be ineffective or even counter-productive. Terrorism is not particularly expensive, and the money needed to finance it can travel by informal routes. In 2012 guards on the border between Nigeria and Niger arrested a man linked to Boko Haram, a Nigerian terror group, with 35,000 in his underpants: laughable, except that the group has killed around 1,500 people this year alone. Restrictions on banks will encourage terrorists to avoid the banking system. That may hinder rather than help the fight against terrorism. A former spy complains that it has become harder to piece together intelligence on terrorist networks now that the money flows within them are entirely illicit.所有的措施都是希望公平的权衡各国的涉恐情况然而,这是这种方法似乎很可能是无效甚至适得其反。而涉恐惩罚的第二个问题是,恐怖主义并非成本高昂,和资金可以通过非正式的方式涉及恐怖主义。2012年,警卫在尼日利亚和尼日尔之间的边境逮捕了一名与尼日利亚的恐怖集团科圣地有关系的恐怖分子,35000英镑可笑的藏在他的内裤,希望该恐怖集团一年内造成约1500人死亡。惩罚涉恐的措施可能使得恐怖主义绕开系统,这可能会阻碍而不是帮助打击恐怖主义。一位曾经做过间谍的抱怨说,现在更加难以拼凑出恐怖分子完整的行动计划,网络空间上他们的资金难以追踪。When the G20 meets later this year it should urge its members to accept the risk that even in well-regulated banking systems money may find its way to terrorists. Banks should be given clear guidance on necessary safeguards, but not held responsible for every breach.在今年召开的20国集团峰会应向其成员传达这样的信息,即使在良好监管下的资金也可能会流入恐怖主义的腰包。应给予资金流动必要的保障措施和明确的指导,但不能对每种渠道负责。 /201406/307637

Politics this week本周政治要闻Sunni jihadists of the Islamic State of Iraq and Greater Syria (ISIS), who have taken Mosul, Iraqs second city, swept on southwards, but their advance stalled once they reached the Shia heartland and mixed provinces close to Baghdad. The government urged Iraqis to unite and fight the insurgents. The American administration pondered whether and how much to help Nuri al-Malikis beleaguered Iraqi government—and whether to co-operate with Iran, his closest regional ally.伊拉克和叙利亚的伊斯兰国家(ISIS)的逊尼派圣战者已经占领了伊拉克的第二大城市苏尔,并向南方席卷而来,但是他们的脚步却停滞在什叶派腹地和接近巴格达的省境交界处。政府敦促伊拉克人团结起来,打击叛乱分子。而美国政府正在考虑是否应该以及在何种程度上帮助马利基饱受争议的伊拉克政府,并且是否与他最亲密的地区盟友伊朗合作。Three young Israeli settlers, two of them 16-year-olds, were kidnapped near the West Bank city of Hebron. Israels prime minister, Binyamin Netanyahu, blamed Hamas, an Islamist movement which, to the chagrin of Israels government, has recently endorsed a new Palestinian unity government. Hamas denied the charge. But hundreds of its supporters were rounded up by Israeli security forces.三个年轻的以色列居民在希伯仑西岸城市附近被绑架,其中包括两个16岁的孩子。以色列总理本雅明?内塔尼亚胡谴责哈马斯这一让政府头疼的伊斯兰运动,他们最近还成立了新的巴勒斯坦联合政府。哈马斯否认了这一指控。但其数百名持者被以色列安全部队逮捕了。Egypts prime minister, Ibrahim Mahlab, who was reappointed earlier this month by the countrys newly elected president, Abdel Fattah al-Sisi, kept most ministers in their posts. But he put a veteran banker, Ashraf Salman, in charge of foreign investment.易卜拉欣·马哈拉布在本月早些时候被新当选总统塞西再次钦定为埃及总理,他保持多数部长的职位不变,但把一位资深家阿什拉夫·萨尔曼,调去负责外国投资。Islamist terrorists belonging to the Shabab, a Somali group, killed at least 65 non-Muslims in villages on the mainland opposite the Kenyan island ofLamu. Many of the victims were members of the Kikuyu tribe to whichKenyas president, Uhuru Kenyatta, belongs. He blamed opposition politicians inKenya, rather than the Shabab, for fomenting the attacks. Tourism inKenya is likely to plummet.伊斯兰恐怖分子属于索马里反政府武装派别;青年党;,他们杀死了肯尼亚拉姆岛对面的村子里至少65名的非穆斯林人士。很多的受害者都是基库尤部落(肯尼亚总统乌呼鲁?肯雅塔所属的部落)的成员。他将这次的煽动性攻击归责于肯尼亚的反对派政客,而不是激进的伊斯兰组织青年党。肯尼亚旅游业可能会一蹶不振。Brought to justice公评断In a midnight operation on the outskirts of Benghazi American special forces captured Ahmed Abu Khattala, the man suspected of organising the attack in the Libyan city in 2012 that killed the American ambassador. The commandos took Mr Abu Khattala to an American navy ship to prepare him for travel to theed States, where he will appear in court.美国特种部队在班加西市郊执勤时抓获了卡达阿拉,他被怀疑2012年在利比亚市组织袭击并杀害了美国大使。突击队把他带往美国海军舰艇,准备将其引渡美国,现身法庭(接受司法审判)。After the shock defeat of Eric Cantor by the Tea Party in a primary election, the Republicans in the House of Representatives moved quickly to choose a new Majority Leader. Kevin McCarthy, a congressman from centralCalifornia, emerged as the strong favourite, distinguished by good looks, excellent fundraising skills and a troubled relationship with the English language.继艾瑞克·康托尔在茶党初选中失败后,众议院中的共和党人迅速行动起来要选举一个新的多数党领袖。来自加州中部的国会议员凯文·麦卡锡成为大热门,他有着杰出的外表,卓越的募集资金能力和稍显蹩脚的英文。Election spoilers选举中的捣蛋分子Afghanistan held a run-off presidential election to decide who will replace Hamid Karzai. Abdullah Abdullah, who is expected to win, demanded a halt to the count over allegations of widesp fraud. He said that ballot boxes had been stuffed and that the system was working to the benefit of his rival, Ashraf Ghani. The result is expected next month.阿富汗举行第二轮总统选举,来决定谁将取代哈米德·卡尔扎伊。胜算较大的阿卜杜拉指控存在欺诈要求停止计数。他说投票箱都被投满了,系统也正在统计他的对手阿什拉夫·贾尼的选票结果。结果预计下个月将揭晓。Cambodia blamed Thailands new military rulers for causing an exodus of Cambodian migrant workers from the country. Around 200,000 Cambodians are thought to have fled across the border amid rumours thatThailands government was about to crack down on illegal workers. The government said the rumours were unwarranted.柬埔寨指责泰国的新军事统治者造成大批柬埔寨农民工离去。由于坊间传言称,泰国政府将严厉打击非法工人,大约有20万名柬埔寨人已经逃离边境。政府称谣言是毫无根据的。Japan banned the possession of child sex-abuse images, one of the last developed countries to do so. Its new law states that anyone found with such images can be jailed for up to a year, or fined up to ,000. The ban does not apply to comics known as manga.日本是最后一个禁止持有性虐待儿童图像的发达国家之一。它的新法律规定任何被发现持有上述图像的人可以被判入狱一年,或高达10000美元的罚款。这一禁令并不不适用于漫画。A senior Chinese diplomat visited Vietnam for talks aimed at calming relations between the two neighbours, but the two sides ended up exchanging sharp views over their dispute in theSouth China Sea.中国高级外交官赴越为缓和两方关系参加会谈。但关于中国南海争端双方给出不可调和的意见,不欢而散。China handed down lengthy jail sentences to three anti-corruption activists. Their crime was asking officials to disclose their wealth.中国给3名激进分子漫长的监禁处罚。其犯罪原因是要求其公开财产。Barack Obama proposed using his executive powers to protect a vast area of the central Pacific Ocean from fishing and other industrial activities. The plan is to expand protected seas around islands and atolls controlled byAmerica.贝拉克·奥巴马利用其行政权为保护太平洋中间广阔区域,禁止和其它工业活动。该计划旨在扩展美国保护下的岛屿和珊瑚礁周围海域。Up in the air悬而未决The ed States Supreme Court refused to hear an appeal by Argentina against a lower-court ruling obliging it to pay a small group of creditors who have been chasing payment following its 2001 debt default. The Argentine government must now decide whether to pay these “holdout” creditors, sidestep the reach of the American courts or risk another default.美国最高法院驳回了阿根廷上诉。阿根廷对于下级法院判决其必须付自2001年阿根廷债务违约后一直追债的一小群债权人不满。现在阿根廷政府必须决定是否付这些“持之以恒”讨债者,绕开与美国法院接触或者面临再次债务违约的风险。The Jamaican government announced that it plans to decriminalise possession of small amounts of marijuana. Parliament is expected to approve the changes by the autumn.牙买加政府宣布计划持有少量的大麻合法化。议会有望于秋天之前通过该此计划。The Canadian government approved the Northern Gateway pipeline project to bring tar-sands oil fromAlberta to the Pacific coast ofBritish Columbia. But objections from the First Nations mean that it remains uncertain whether the pipeline will go ahead.加拿大政府通过了北方门户管道计划,该计划将亚伯达的油砂运往加拿大不列颠哥伦比亚省的太平洋港口。但是来自第一民族人民的反对意味着管道计划能否进行是个未知数。Juan Manuel Santos won a second term as Colombias president, taking 51% of the vote in a run-off against óscar Iván Zuluaga. Mr Santoss victory means peace talks with the countrys leftist guerrillas will continue.哥伦比亚总统胡安·曼努埃尔·桑托斯赢得连任机会,在最终选举以51%的选票打败了奥斯卡·伊凡·祖拉戈。桑托斯的胜利意味着与国家右翼游击队和平会谈将继续举行。Deadly force致命的力量Petro Poroshenko, Ukraines new president, announced a unilateral ceasefire in the fighting with pro-Russian rebels in easternUkraine. This came after the separatists shot down a military transport jet killing 49 people, the deadliest incident so far in the fighting.Russia meanwhile cut off gas supplies toUkraine in a dispute over payments, and a big gas pipeline in the country was bombed.乌克兰新总统彼得·波罗申科单方面宣布与乌克兰东部亲俄叛乱者停火。此前分裂者击落了一架军用运输喷气式飞机,导致49人死亡,这是这场冲突死伤人数最多的一次。同时,俄罗斯由于在天然气价格上达不成统一意见,已切断对乌克兰天然气的供应。而乌克兰一条大型天然气管道也被轰炸。Marek Belka, the governor of Polands central bank, kept his job, despite calls for his and the entire governments resignation. In an obscenity-laced recording leaked by Wprost, a news weekly, Mr Belka appears to be striking a deal last July to support the government of Donald Tusk by propping up the economy, in return for the sacking of the then finance minister, Jacek Rostowski.马雷克·贝尔卡,波兰中央行长克了各种让他和整个政府辞职的呼声,保住了他的职位。波兰一家新闻周刊杂志Wprost公布了一段夹杂下流言语的录音,其中贝尔卡在去年七月签订了一项协议表明通过持经济方式来帮助唐纳德·图斯克政府,条件是解雇时任财政大臣罗斯托斯基。A rail strike in France prompted outrage when it disrupted the first day of the all-important baccalauréat, the school-leaving test. Rail workers walked off the job as French teenagers struggled with exam questions about epistemology and what it means to be human.法国铁路罢工引发众怒。而此时正值非常重要的毕业考试第一天,当时法国青年们正在参与讨论认识论以及认识论对人类价值的考试斗争,而铁路工人却擅自离开工作岗位。 201407/308864

  Stretching and toning are certainly important, but their benefitsare different from that of aerobic exercise.伸展和拉伸显然很重要,但是,对身体的益处有别于有氧运动。Surprisingly,aerobic exercise isnt just beneficial to your heart, it alsosharpens your mind.意想不到的是有氧运动不仅仅有益身心,还能灵活大脑。You dont have to be a jock to enjoy the brain benefits of aerobic exercise.享受有氧运动对于大脑健康的福利,并不一定要向运动员般剧烈运动。Moderateaerobic exercise is plenty.适度有氧运动就获益颇多了。Several studies involving older adultsdemonstrated that simply walking a mile or so three times a week,increases blood flow in the brainand strengthens connections between neurons, resulting in improved mental performance ontasks requiring attention.一些有关老年人的研究实,只需每周三次散步一英里左右就能促进大脑血液循环;增强神经元间的“互动”,提高注意力,从而提升智力。One of the studies divided a group of seniors into two different six-month exercise coursesonecourse consisting of aerobic exercise,the other consisting of stretching and toning.一项研究将老人们分为两组:一组做有氧运动;另一组做伸展和无氧拉伸半年的时间。Again, werenot talking about marathon-training here.但是,运动量都是适度的而非马拉松式。The aerobic-training course gradually built itsparticipants up to walking 45 minutes at a moderate pace three times a week.有氧运动组让老人们养成了每周三次45分钟正常步伐走路。At the end of the course, the people who completed the aerobic training showed significantimprovements in attention-related mental tasks.有氧运动训练完后,参加者在注意力相关的智能测试有显著提升。The stretching and toning group showed littleimprovement.而后一组受训前后并无明显差异。 201405/295948

  Business商业报道Golden parachutes金色降落伞Rip-cord economics打开经济降落伞Pay-offs for the boss need to be better designed企业老板薪酬结构须改善RICH rewards for departing bosses are not popular.离职的老板还领着厚饷总让人难以接受。After Sir Fred Goodwin led Royal Bank of Scotland into a ditch and dumped the bill on British taxpayers, he left with a pension of over £700,000 a year.弗雷德?古德温爵士把苏格兰皇家推进深坑,继而用英国纳税人的真金白银买单走人之后,居然每年还享有70万英镑的退休金。The Sun, a tabloid, said he had screwed the nation.英国小报太阳报直陈其把整个国家都搞砸了。Yet golden parachutes have their uses.不过金色降落伞条款也并非一无是处。 If well-designed, they align the bosss interests more closely with those of shareholders.如果妥善拟备该等条款,老板的利益会更紧密地和股东利益协调一致。Suppose, for example, a takeover is brewing.例如,在拟收购的项目中,该等条款的作用就可见一斑。Takeovers are usually lucrative for shareholders of the target firm:对于目标公司的股东而言,收购通常会带来丰厚回报:in America between 1990 and 2008, they have received a median premium of 35%. But the bosss interests are quite different.在美国1990年至2008年间的收购项目中,目标公司股东的收益溢价中值为35%。If the firm is acquired, he is likely to be fired.但老板的权益相去甚远;如果公司最终被收购,其可能官位难保。A golden parachute can persuade the boss not to obstruct a takeover.妥善的金色降落伞条款可促使老板不为收购设置障碍。But their notoriety dissuades firms from using them.但鉴于该条款通常不受欢迎,公司不太会动用。Dirk Jenter of Stanford University and Katharina Lewellen of Tuck Business School find that golden parachutes are rarer and stingier than they should be.斯坦福大学的德克?珍特和塔克商学院的卡特琳娜?卢埃林研究认为:金色降落伞条款不应该像现在这般罕见且苛刻。To test whether bosses block takeovers, they looked at what happens when they are nearing retirement, and therefore have no future career to sacrifice.为核查企业老板是否会因其自身原因选择阻碍收购,这两位学者研究了临近退休的老板会如何处理收购项目。Using data on American public firms from 1992 to 2008, they found that companies with a boss aged 65 or over were 50% more likely to be taken over.他们分析了1992年至2008年美国上市公司的数据,结果显示:老板年龄在65岁以上的公司被收购的可能性高出50%。Another paper, by Eliezer Fich and Ralph Walkling of Drexel University and Anh Tran of Cass Business School,德雷塞尔大学的埃利泽?芬奇、拉尔夫?沃克林与卡斯商学院的陈安在一篇共同发表的论文中指出:found that when golden parachutes are larger, proposed mergers are more likely to be completed,如果金色降落伞的力度增强,拟合并项目达成的可能性更大,but buyers pay less for the shares of the target firm.但买方就目标公司股份所付的对价则减少。The data from Mr Jenter and Ms Lewellen show that when the boss of the target firm is old, buyers pay an average premium of 26%.珍特与卢埃林的统计数据显示:如果目标公司的老板年届退休,买方付的平均溢价为26%;For younger bosses, the premium is 33%.而对于老板年龄较轻的公司,则为33%。This makes sense. If younger bosses are more reluctant to sell, it will cost more to overcome their objections.这就说明了问题所在:年轻的老板相对不太愿意售出其公司,所以买方须付更高溢价以平息其反对意见。So boards must strike a balance.所以,董事会必须寻求一种平衡。If the bosss golden parachute is too miserly, he may block a deal that would benefit shareholders.若金色降落伞条款对企业老板过于不利,其可能会干预对股东有利的交易;If it is too generous, he may fail to negotiate hard with potential buyers.反之,若金色降落伞条款对其过于优厚,其可能不愿尽心尽力与拟收购方谈判。As with real parachutes, poor design can have serious consequences.跟真正的降落伞一样,劣质的金色降落伞所带来的后果可能不堪设想。 /201305/239696。

  What is fire anyway?火究竟是什么?Well, fire is rapid oxidization.火,即燃烧,是快速的氧化反应。Its the energy released whenoxygen atoms start combining with carbon and hydrogenatoms.氧化反应是氧原子和碳原子或氢原子结合释放能量。Exactly, so without oxygen in the air, nothing burns.没错,那么如果空气中没有氧气,就不会有燃烧。You mean there was a time before oxygen?你是说氧气还不存在的那个时代?Yes. By roughly a billion years ago, simple forms of plant life called “eukaryotes” were aly busilyconverting carbon dioxide into oxygen gas, just like their descendants do today.对,大约十亿年前,和眼下的植物一样,地球上最原始的植物祖先“真核细胞”忙碌地将二氧化碳转变成氧气。But before thisprocess had been in place for a while, there wasnt enough oxygen in the air for things to burn.但是,在此转化之前的一段时间,空气中没有足够的氧气可以燃烧东西。In fact, of all the planets, moons, asteroids, and comets in our solar system, the only place whereyou can actually start a fire is right here on earth.而事实上,整个太阳系的所有的行星、月球、小行星、彗星,你会发现唯一可以生活的地方只有地球。And even here, its only been possible relativelyrecently.而就算是地球,也是不久以前才可行。 201405/298766

  Business商业报道American business美国公司Hard times, lean firms艰难时局磨练高效能企业How much longer can America keep increasing productivity?美国的生产率增长还能持续多久?EVERYONE complains that corporate America is reluctant to hire additional workers.企业不愿再增加雇佣量在美国引起民怨沸腾。Far less attention has been paid to the flip side of the jobless recovery:但很少有人关注减少失业率的有效途径:the remarkable improvement in American productivity.显著提升美国的劳动生产率水平。How long can this continue? I see no limit, says William Hickey, the boss of Sealed Air, a packaging-maker.这种提升能持续多久?包装材料制造商宝廷的老总William Hickey 说:依我看来可无限期提升。Is he right to be so optimistic?他的这种乐观估计是对还是错?American firms were slow to react to the downturn at the beginning of the century, and paid the price.新世纪之初,美国企业在应对经济衰退时反应迟钝,并为此付出了代价。They learned their lesson.它们吸取了教训,When the economy slumped in 2008, they were much quicker to adjust.更快地适应了2008年的经济大萧条,There was little of the fall in labour productivity that normally accompanies a recession, and this was not just a one-off batting average effect.且劳动生产率也没有如往常随经济衰退而下降。这不只是一次性实现的棒球击球率效应。Rather, it was a productivity boost that has continued in defiance of expert predictions that workers can only be squeezed so hard for a short while.专家们认为这是一种依靠压榨产业工人在短时期内维持的经济增长模式。然而恰恰相反,这种增长是靠全力提升劳动生产率实现的。After falling in the first half of the year, American labour productivity was 2.3% higher in the third quarter of 2011 than in the same period a year earlier.经历了上半年的下降后,2011年第三季度美国的劳动生产率同比增长了2.3%,This was the fastest quarterly rise in 18 months.这是18个月内最快的季度性增长。Manufacturing productivity in that quarter rose by 2.9% compared with a year earlier.该季度制造业生产率同比增长了2.9%。Americas productivity growth has been more robust than most other rich countriesa feat many ascribe to its flexible labour market and a culture of enterprise.美国的生产率比绝大多数发达国家增长得更为强劲—许多人将这一成就归功于美国灵活的劳动力市场机制和特有的企业文化。Yet some analysts expect productivity growth to stall soon.但有些分析师认为生产率不久将停止增长。Hard-pressed workers are feeling grouchy: workforce surveys report record levels of job dissatisfaction.重重压力令产业工人们牢骚不断:劳动力调查显示出对工作表示不满的人数创了纪录。Many firms have been starving the organisation to see how it can do with a lower cost structure, says Carsten Stendevad of Citigroup, a bank.Citigroup的Carsten Stendevad说,很多公司正忍饥挨饿,以 测试自身在低成本状态下的生存能力。Unless the economy picks up, he predicts that productivity growth will slow in 2012.他预计,只要经济形势没有好转,2012年生产率增长就会放缓。Two things could keep productivity rising.有两个因素能使生产率持续增长。First, workers are terrified of losing their jobs.其一,工人们害怕失业,This makes it easier to persuade them to put in extra hours or shoulder new tasks.这使得鼓励他们加班或干其它的活变得更加容易。Even in unionised firms, there have been reports of greater flexibility.据媒体报道,即使企业里有工会,维权活动仍更具弹性。Workers have been staying on the job longer rather than featherbedding their hours by,工人们将更多的时间用于工作,for example, queuing up early to clock off as soon as the shift ends.而不是一到换班时间便早早排队下班等浪费行为。Second, tough times are forcing firms to strain every brain cell to become more efficient.其二,困难的时局正促使企业为提高效率而绷紧每一根神经。Sealed Air, for example, has made numerous incremental tweaks,以希悦尔包装公司为例,该公司逐步做出了大量技术改进,such as upgrading a machine that makes absorbent pads for supermarket meat trays so that its output increased from 400 units per hour three years ago to 550—with the same number of workers.如通过升级一款生产超市装肉托盘用吸水纸的机器,在工人数量相同的条件下,产量由三年前的每小时500件提升到550件。The willingness of firms to invest in such enhancements has varied enormously.企业对这类技术改进的投资意愿各不相同。Some would rather hoard cash or buy back their own shares than spend it on more efficient machinery or information technology.有的企业宁愿积蓄资金或购买自己的股票也不愿投资于产能提升和信息技术领域。Yet there are signs that leading industrial firms are starting to increase their capital spending, says Jeff Sprague of Vertical Research Partners, a research outfit.而研究组织纵向研究伙伴的Jeff Sprague认为,主要工业企业已有增加投资的迹象,并尤其指出,企业正投资于消除瓶颈。In particular, he has noticed firms investing in debottlenecking which, as its name suggests, means removing hold-ups in production processes, sometimes with an additional production line.这一概念名称意味着清除生产过程中的障碍,有时还要为此增加生产线。There are hefty gains to be made from using more automation, says Mr Hickey, adding that although he worries about diminishing returns, we havent hit the wall yet.更广泛地使用自动化技术可获得更大规模的收益,并坦言自己虽然担心收益止升回落,但我们还没有触及增幅上限。Service businesses, too, are wringing efficiency improvements from new technology.务业也正通过运用新技术努力提升效率。Hertz allows customers to rent cars at automated kiosks, just as airlines have for some time allowed passengers to check in without talking to anyone. Fast-food firms,汽车租赁公司Hertz如今可使顾客通过自动化租车亭实现汽车租赁,就像航空公司曾使旅客不用与任何人交谈便可办理登机手续一样。such as McDonalds and Starbucks, are continuously innovating with their products and service.快餐企业如麦当劳、星巴克等正坚持产品和务创新。In short, the recession has forced American firms to become more muscular.总之,此轮经济衰退迫使美国企业变得更加强健。This should help them thrive when the good times return.这将有助于它们在经济复苏后蓬勃发展,It should also give them an edge over foreign rivals.并提高对外国竞争对手的优势。But all such advantages are temporary.但这所有的优点都是暂时的。As Mr Hickey points out, a factory that Sealed Air opened in Mexico was expected to be far less productive than one in America, but within four years had caught up.Hickey指出,宝廷在墨西哥的一家工厂的产能曾被认为会远远落后于其在美国的一家工厂,但四年之内,前者便追平了后者。 /201305/239871

  Finance and Economics;Spanish banks;The long kiss goodnight;财经;西班牙业;漫长的晚安吻别;A bank merger sheds fresh light on a sickly industry;合并为沉疴已久的西班牙业带来一丝曙光;It may be Spains most short-lived public company. Just a few months after its July debut on the Spanish stockmarket, Banca Cívica this week agreed to sell itself to CaixaBank, a larger rival, at an 11% discount to its market price. The “take-under” is a sharp reminder of Spains property woes.它可能是西班牙史上最短命的上市公司。就在本周,Banca Cívica同意以低于市价11%的折扣把自己出售给其强劲的竞争对手Caixa,此时距离它去年七月在在西班牙股票市场首次公开发行仅过去不过数月。Banca Cívica的“贱卖”让人们猛然想起了哀鸿遍野的西班牙地产市场。Banca Cívica listed in the first place to meet capital targets set by the then Spanish government. Now it is one of the first casualties of rules set by the new government to get banks to set aside provisions and capital worth 50 billion Euro(66 billion Dollar) to cover losses on dud property loans. Faced with a capital and provisioning shortfall of 2 billion Euro, Banca Cívica accepted an all-share deal that valued it at a third of its book value. The combined entity will become Spains largest bank by assets, with around 15% of the retail market.前任西班牙政府制定的资本充足率目标对业影响甚广,首当其冲的便是Banca Cívica。新届政府成立后,又要求业对不良房地产贷款计提价值500亿欧元(660亿美元)资本的坏账准备金。由于资本不足,Banca Cívica的坏账准备金面临着20亿欧元的缺口,只得接受换股收购,以账面价值三分之一的价格将自己出售。合并后的企业实体以资产来计将成为西班牙最大的,占据大约15%的零售市场The deal may not be good for Cívicas shareholders, but it is positive for the system as a whole that a stronger bank is using its excess capital to clean up a weaker one. As part of the deal, CaixaBank will write down 3.4 billion Euro of Banca Cívicas assets, 3 billion Euro of which relates to property loans and foreclosures—more than the amount Banca Cívica was officially supposed to set aside and a sign that the current provisioning targets might still be insufficient. CaixaBank can afford to take the hit. Its core capital will drop by 1.7 percentage points, yet it is still on track to meet the 9% core-capital mark demanded by European regulators by the summer.这笔交易或许不符合Banca Cívica股东们的利益,但对整个市场来说却是个积极的信号,因为一家强大的将用它多余的资本为另一家虚弱清理不良贷款。作为交易的一部分,Caixa会对Banca Cívica的资产减记34亿欧元,这当中有30亿欧元与房地产贷款以及抵押品停止赎回有关——超过了之前Banca Cívica官方估计的处理金额,这很可能预示着目前的坏账准备金目标仍过低。Caixa能够承受这一资产减值的打击,虽然它的核心资本充足率将因此下降1.7%,但仍满足今年夏天欧洲央行规定的9%的的目标。Capital elsewhere is scarce, however. Most other lenders lack CaixaBanks powerful balance-sheet: they are focused on meeting a March 31st deadline to present their plans to the Bank of Spain on how to meet the new provisioning requirements. And just like its predecessor, the government is trying to minimise the cost of bank rescues to the taxpayer and to the countrys public finances, now firmly back in the bond-market spotlight. “Unfortunately, the capacity to recognise losses is extremely limited because, as things stand, there is no capital, private or public, for a convincing recapitalisation,” worries Tano Santos of Columbia University.然而,对于其他而言,资本仍很是稀缺。许多都没有Caixa那样强劲的资产负债表:它们正专注于在3月31日大限前向西班牙央行提交一份方案,说明自己如何实现新的准备金要求。和前任政府的做法相同,现任政府试图将附加于纳税人和国家财政身上的的救助成本最小化。政府力图重返债券市场的做法使其备受关注。“不幸的是,西班牙确认资产损失的能力有限。目前看来,无论是私人资本还是政府资金都十分欠缺,这让资本重组显得不可信。”哥伦比亚大学的塔诺桑托斯担忧地说道。The government used money from an industry-backed deposit guarantee fund (FGD) to inject capital and guarantee risky assets during the sale of two nationalised banks, Banco CAM and Unnim. Three more nationalised lenders will soon be auctioned and will also need money to smooth the way. But the pot is now nearly empty. The FGD could ask for extraordinary contributions from banks or raise debt backed by future annual contributions. But bankers grumble that this is like trying to get a sick patient to cure himself.政府在出售CAM和Unnim这两家国有的过程中,动用了业发起成立的储蓄担保基金(FGD)来为它们注入资本,并且为风险资产提供担保。另外三家国有很快也会被拍卖,这也需要钱来铺路。但是储蓄担保基金现在已经用的快见底了。FGD有两条路可以走:或者要求各家提供额外的资金;又或者以各未来每年注资的形式作担保来发行债券。但家们纷纷抱怨,这种做法好是比让病人自己抢救自己。One source of concern is BFA Bankia, which listed the day before Banca Cívica last summer and faces a provisioning and capital shortfall of 5.1 billion Euro. After deducting provisions aly taken in 2011, asset sales and the recent swap of preference shares in its parent group, BFA, for Bankia shares, the shortfall is closer to 2.7 billion Euro. Speculation that it might merge with CaixaBank was quashed by the latters deal with Cívica, but rumours swirl about other mergers.BFA Bankia现在尤其令人担忧。这家在去年夏天仅比Banca Cívica早一天上市。它面临的准备金和资本短缺达到了51亿欧元。该在2011年通过资产出售和向母公司互换优先股的方式筹集了一部分准备金,但仍面临着27亿欧元的资金缺口。此前曾有传言Caixa将与BFA Bankia进行合并,尽管随后发生的CaixaBank 与Cívica的合并交易使得谣言不攻自破,但有关其并购的各种传闻依然甚嚣尘上。Bankia says it can make it on its own. The shortfall will be covered by a combination of profits, balance-sheet shrinkage and more asset sales and preference-share swaps. Rodrigo Rato, the chairman, downplayed the challenges in its 2011 results presentation. “Bankia doesnt represent a systemic problem,” he said. “Bankia is systemic, but it isnt a problem.”Bankia宣称它完全能自力更生地筹集到准备金,短缺的资金将由未来盈利、收缩资产负债表以及出售资产和优先股互换来弥补。Bankia的董事局主席罗德里格拉托在2011年的业绩发布会上轻描淡写地谈起面临的挑战。“Bankia不存在系统性问题”他说道。“Bankia的确是一家系统性,但它不是问题。”All of which leaves the new government in a similar bind to the old one. Forcing a rapid clean-up of the sector risks soaking up scarce public money. But leaving the banks to muddle their way through has costs, too. Although the European Central Banks three-year loan programme has eased funding pressures on Spanish banks, a credit crunch is under way. Listed Spanish banks shrank their loan books by 3.7% in 2011, according to estimates by Exane BNP Paribas, an investment firm which expects the trend to continue this year and next. That risks worsening the economic situation, and the losses that lenders face. Tightening the screws on provisions is an important step, but the government may yet need another reform plan.所有这一切使得新政府陷入了一个与其前任相似的困境中。对风险资产的快速清理会导致公众资金的严重短缺。然而,如果放任业稀里糊涂地进行自救,也有各种各样的成本。尽管欧洲央行的三年期贷款项目已经缓解了西班牙的资金压力,但是信贷紧缩已经不可避免。根据法国巴黎的的估计,在2011年,西班牙上市的贷款发放收缩了3.7%。这家投行还预计,贷款紧缩趋势在今明两年仍会持续。信贷紧缩风险会进一步恶化经济环境,加剧的损失。要求提高准备金对于改革来说是关键一步,但是西班牙政府可能到了需要一个新的改革计划的时候了。 /201306/242476Traditional societies传统社会No beating about the bush不绕弯子Americas best-known geographer shows what there is to learn from early man美国最为知名的地理学家认为我们应该向早期人类学习The World Until Yesterday: What Can We Learn from Traditional Societies?《昨日世界:传统社会有何借鉴之处?》1 JARED DIAMOND has made a name for himself explaining why some societies do well and others do not. In “Guns, Germs and Steel”, his 1997 bestseller, he brushed aside the arrogant view that ascribed Europes dominance to human biology, stressing instead the continents environmental advantages, notably its native wheat and barley and its easily domesticated animals. He followed this up eight years later with “Collapse”, another exhaustive study, this time about how certain societies caused their own demise by ruining the environs that sustained them. Read together, these are civilisation-scale books about survival.贾雷德戴蒙德因为分析了一些社会运行良好一些社会难以为继的原因而名声大噪。他执笔的《炮、病菌与钢铁》是1997年的畅销书。书中,他对 “欧洲社会之所以运行良好,是因为其主导了人类生物学领域” 这一自负论断不屑一顾,在他看来,欧洲大陆的昌盛是因为欧洲优越的环境特别适合种植小麦、大麦以及饲养家畜。八年后,他奉献了耗时良久的又一力作-《崩溃:社会如何选择成败兴亡》。书中主要内容是介绍一些人类社会是如何毁掉自己赖以生存的周遭环境,进而导致自己灭亡的。两本书都是文明层面上有关人类生存的书籍。But they cover only a small portion of the human story. In his new book Mr Diamond, a geographer at UCLA, points out that life on this scale is a recent phenomenon. For most of history human beings lived in small groups as hunter-gatherers. Agriculture began 11,000 years ago; state government not even half as recently.But Mr Diamond, who has spent years studying in the jungles of Papua New Guinea and learning from local tribes people, argues that mankind retains important links to its distant past and can still learn a thing or two from traditional societies.不过,这两本书中写到的只是人类故事的冰山一角。现任教于美国加州洛杉矶分校地理学系的贾雷德.戴蒙德在他的新书中写到人类今天以这种模式生存只是近代才有的一种现象。在历史的大部分时期,人们一直以类似于狩猎者一样聚居的方式生存,毕竟人类开始从事农业生产的历史也才11,000多年,国家政府也是在近代5500多年前才出现。戴蒙德教授花了八年时间呆在巴布亚新几内亚的丛林里,研究当地的部落居民,得出了这样的结论:人类仍旧与遥远的过去保持着重要的联系,传统社会有很多事情值得我们借鉴。Mr Diamond writes, for example, that most societies have held on to some form of religion as a way of maintaining social order, comforting the anxious and teaching political obedience. Tribal societies in New Guinea rarely, if ever, fight over religious matters. These societies also tend to be more multilingual, helpful for diplomacy perhaps, and as it turns out, also a way of protecting against Alzheimers. There are 1,000 different languages in New Guinea alone. Traditional societies resolve disputes by making do entirely without the state. In stark contrast to the American criminal-justice system, the leopard-skin-draped chief of Sudans Nuer people has no role in settling disputes but works to facilitate mediation and calculate traditional forms of compensation.比如,戴蒙德教授在书中就这样写到:大部分人类社会都保留了某种宗教形式,用于维持社会治安、安抚社会急躁情绪、 维持政治统治。不过, 新几内亚的部落居民却从未因为宗教事务发生过冲突。这些原始的部落使用的语言不止一种, 或许这样有助于人们交往。事实上明,使用多种语言也是防治老年痴呆症的好方法。单单在新几内亚就有1000多种语言。传统社会一般在没有国家机器的状态下,就能解决所有冲突。与美国刑事司法系统截然不同的是,苏丹身穿豹纹皮的努尔部落首领没有权力解决纠纷,但是可以采用传统的计算方法核算补偿,从中进行调停。Other things have changed, not all of them for the better. The gluttonous industrialised world could benefit from a more Palaeolithic diet. Traditional societies have hardly a trace of the Wests main non-communicable diseases, such as heart attacks, strokes, diabetes and many forms of cancer—the hallmarks of a diet rich in salt and saturated fat.Thanks to a cuisine of mainly low-sodium bananas, Brazils Yanomamo Indians consume only 50 milligrams of salt a day. One Big Mac would give them a months worth. Tribespeople who adopt a sedentary lifestyle and eat processed food show a sharp increase in the same diseases that afflict Westerners. A third of urbanised Australian aboriginals suffer from type-2 diabetes, and among the Wanigela in Port Moresby, New Guineas modern capital city, the figure is closer to 40%.很多事情已经改变,但是并不尽如人意。 生活在贪婪的工业社会的人们可以多学学旧石器时代的饮食习惯,相信会受益良多。生活在传统社会的人,几乎没人得过类似于心脏病、中风、糖尿病和多种癌症等困扰西方人的常见非传染疾病。这些疾病是食用含盐量高和脂肪饱和食物的有力明。多亏了食用含钠较低的香蕉,巴西的雅诺玛莫印度人一天食盐摄入量只有仅仅50毫克。一个大苹果,就能让他们大快朵颐。那些习惯了长时间坐着工作、食用加工食品生活方式的部落居民,患上那些困扰西方人疾病的几率聚居上升。生活在城里的澳大利亚原住民,有三分之一患上了Ⅱ型糖尿病。生活在巴布亚新几内亚的现代化首都尔贝斯港的Wanigela人,患该类糖尿病的比例将近40%。Mr Diamond is at his most impressed when it comes to tribal family life. He writes of missionary children who prefer the playgroups of traditional societies that bring together children of different ages to the solitary fixation on games that are common back home. Raising children is a communal affair in which the elderly are deeply involved, unlike what happens in most Western countries. He cites studies that show that an African Aka pygmy infant, for example, is looked after by at least seven people and babies in the Efe tribe by as many as 14.At the same time, he writes, children in traditional households seem to enjoy more autonomy. In the Kalahari the !Kung do not resort to physical punishment; instead children are allowed to slap and insult their parents. And New Guinea Highlander children are encouraged to play with knives and with fire, precisely so that they are able to learn from their mistakes.最让戴蒙德教授印象深刻的是部落的家庭生活。他书中写到,比起一回到家一律死盯着电动游戏的孩子相比,传教士的孩子更喜欢在传统社会的操场上玩,在那里,不同年纪的孩子能在一起嬉闹追逐。与大部分西方国家不同的是,在部落家庭里,抚养孩子是集体的事情,老人是这个过程中绝对的主角。有研究显示,非洲地区的阿卡俾格米矮人族的婴儿由至少7人照顾,埃菲社里的婴儿至少由14个人照顾。他书中就引用了这项研究。同时,他还写到,传统家庭长大的孩子似乎想要更多的自主性。喀拉哈沙漠 the Kung人种不会体罚孩子,相反允许孩子侮辱、打骂家长。为了让孩子可以从错误中切身地汲取教训,新几内亚的高地人鼓励孩子玩火,耍刀。In all this, the authors argument is not that we should abandon our modern way of life—he certainly has not—nor does he romanticise traditional people as earth-loving peaceniks. A tribal life can, after all, be nasty and brutish. Few people live past the age of 50, mostly because of curable diseases. For the !Kung, infanticide has been permitted in order to preserve resources in lean times. Bolivias Siriono Indians abandoned their elderly once they became a burden. North American Crow Indians encouraged them to commit suicide. Tribal warfare may kill far fewer than 21st-century mechanised versions, but there is still a constant fear of raids and revenge killings. And a higher percentage of the population dies fighting.作者这么写,不是说人们应该放弃现代生活方式,他也没有这层意思。他也没有把传统社会生活的人们美化成和平分子。毕竟,部落里的生活是不文明而且残酷的。部落里的人很少有活过50的,大部分死于可以治疗的疾病。在the!kung 民族里,收成不好的时节,为了节省资源,人们可以屠杀婴儿。玻利维亚的西瑞诺娜民族会遗弃拖累族群的老人。北美的客如印第安人鼓励孩子杀人。部落争斗中丧生的人大大少于21世纪机械化战争中死亡的人数,但是部落居民一直都有遭受突袭、仇杀之类的担忧。部落人口中很大一部分死于部落斗争。Nor is subsistence living for the faint- hearted. Shortages can mean starvation. Taro, a tropical-root vegetable, is the staple food of the Kaulong people of New Britain, an island off Papua New Guinea. But in the dry season they are forced to scour the forest for insects, snails and unpalatable plants. Toxic wild nuts must be soaked in water for days to leach out the poison.书中,他也没有说胆小鬼有生存的可能。物资短缺可意味着要挨饿。巴布亚新几内亚群岛附近的一座名为新英格兰的岛生活着卡隆民族,他们的主食就是热带根茎蔬菜芋头。但是一到旱季,他们就得去森林捉昆虫,蜗牛以及不怎么美味的植物充饥。他们还会把有毒的野生坚果浸在水里数日,溶解毒性后食用。Mr Diamonds book is mostly a fascinating survey of a rapidly fading world. Only when it tries to pose as a handbook for tribal living does it fall flat. Comparing traditional strategies for maximising crop yields with modern ways of managing financial investments is more banal than original. Our forebears have been around for a lot longer than we have; learning how they did so should be lesson enough.很大程度上来说,戴蒙德教授的新书是对快速消亡世界的一次引人入胜的探寻。如果把这本书当成部落生活的手册,那么这本书就完全算不上好书。把最大程度上提高收成的传统方法与现代金融投资管理方式相比是一种没有创意而且很迂腐的行为。我们的祖先先于我们存在很久,弄明白他们是如何做到这一点就足够我们学一辈子的了。 /201406/304925

  Business商业报道Japanese firms shop abroad进军海外Armed with a strong yen以强势日元攻破海外市场Why Japan Inc has been going on a foreign spree为何日本企业转而血拼海外MR TICKLE and Mr Bump are leaping into bed with Hello Kitty.奇先生与妙中的挠痒痒先生和莽撞先生癞蛤蟆想吃天鹅肉,蹿上了凯蒂猫的床。Sanrio, the owner of the bow-adorned feline, said on December 6th that it had acquired the Mr Men franchise from Chorion of Britain.三丽欧公司是戴蝴蝶结猫的主人,该公司于12月6日说其已从英国购买了奇先生的特许经销权。The deal, for an estimated 3 billion,brings the Japanese design and licensing firm 86 playful characters who have delighted toddlers in 30 countries and shifted 100m books.这次交易估计价值为30亿日元使得日本这个设计和经销公司拥有了86个曾给30个国家幼儿带去欢乐的幽默好玩的人物。该书在市面上售出上亿本。Corporate Japan is on an overseas shopping spree.日本的公司在海外疯狂地进行兼并扩展。Japanese firms spent a record billion on some 620 foreign companies in 2011, according to Dealogic, a firm that measures such things, exceeding the previous record of 466 deals worth billion in 2008.据专门衡量公司并购的研究机构迪罗基表示,2011年日本公司耗资800亿美元收购了620个左右的外国公司,从而打破了2008年创下的750亿美元购得466企业的历史记录。When Japan Inc went shopping abroad in the 1980s, it was a sign of strength.二十世纪八十年代,日本公司往海外开疆拓土时,那时是国力强盛的标志。Japanese companies were sping their wings because they were growing. This time, it is a symptom of weakness.这次是其国力衰退的征兆。The past year in Japan has been wretched.过去的一年对于日本来说是凄凄惨惨的一年。An earthquake and tsunami in March wrecked factories and disrupted supply chains, creating shortages of all sorts of crucial components. Radiation fears hurt exports.今年3月发生的地震和海啸摧毁了工厂使供应链瘫痪,导致各种关键零部件严重短缺。A strong yen walloped profits.人们对幅射的担忧影响了出口。Floods in Thailand interrupted the distribution of electronics and car parts.坚挺的日元蚕食了利润。泰国的洪水中断了对电子和汽车部件的配送。Corporate-governance scandals cast a black cloud over blue suits nationwide.公司、政府丑闻层出不穷,像乌云黑压压地笼罩在这个岛国上空。The Japanese population is ageing and shrinking.日本的人口在老化缩减。The economy is sluggish. Consumption is lacklustre.经济不景气。消费萎靡不振。So Japanese firms find it nearly impossible to expand domestically.故日本公司在国内几乎找不到可以扩展的地方。At the same time, thanks to crises elsewhere in the rich world, the yen is extraordinarily strong.同时,幸亏其他发达国家的经济危机,日元非常地坚挺。It has appreciated by 45% against the dollar in the past four years.在过去的四年中,日元对美元已升值45%。And having learned thrift during their own banking crisis a decade ago, Japanese firms are flush:日本从其十年前的危机中学到了节约开的教训,日本公司利润丰厚:big listed companies are sitting on a cash pile of ¥60 trillion.大的上市公司坐拥价值60万亿的现金。With all this buying power and few opportunities at home, it is hardly surprising that Japanese firms are snapping up foreign companies, especially in fast-growing emerging economies.随着国内购买力低迷和机会减少,日本到处抢滩海外市场尤其是高速发展的新兴经济体则不足为奇。Unless we grow were not able to stay alive simply by staying in Japan,若国内有市场,我们则仍继续呆在日本求生存。explains Tadashi Yanai, the boss of Uniqlos Fast Retailing, a big clothing firm.装巨头优衣库的老板柳井正解释道。The time is ripe for foreign deals, he chirps.他感叹道向海外进军的时机成熟了。The economic crises in America and Europe have pummelled share prices, making companies cheaper to acquire.美国和欧洲的经济危机使公司股票严重缩水,使得收购公司易于反掌。Back in the 1980s Japanese firms hunted trophies such as golf courses and film studios.回顾二十世纪八十年代,日本公司海外扩张的战利品包括高尔夫球场和电影制片厂。Now they are taking a more pragmatic approach, buying solid firms in fast-growing markets and filling gaps in their product lines.现在他们采取更务实的策略,即从高速增长的市场中购买实体工厂以填补其生产线的空白。For example, Kirin, a big Japanese brewer, is acquiring a majority stake in Schincariol, a Brazilian one, for .6 billion.例如,日本的啤酒制造巨头麒麟啤酒以26亿美元的代价获得了巴西的Schincariol公司的股份控制权。The Japanese beer market is flat; Brazils is growing by 10% a year.日本的啤酒市场非常平淡;巴西的啤酒以年均10%的速度在增长。The biggest deal of the year was when Takeda, a Japanese drug firm, bought Nycomed, a Swiss one, for 1 trillion.今年最大的并购当数日本的医药公司Takeda以1万亿日元将瑞士药厂Nycomed收入旗下。Almost 40% of Nycomeds sales are in emerging markets.新兴市场占据了Nycomed将近40%的销售。Japanese trading houses are hungrily buying energy projects, especially those involving shale gas.日本商行迫不急待出手能源项目尤其是涉及到页岩天然气的项目。This year they spent billion, up from less than billion in 2010.今年他们在这些项目上的投资从2010年的不到30亿美元上升到100亿美元。The pace of such deals accelerated after Japanese nuclear-power plants were suspended following the nuclear accident at Fukushima in March,在今年3月福岛核事故发生后,日本原子能工厂项目被中止,使得许多日本人担心国内能源供应。which made many Japanese worry about their energy supply.故日本加大了收购海外能源的步伐。Toshiba spent .6 billion on Landis+Gyr, which makes smart electricity meters for homes.东芝在制造家用智能电表Landis+Gyr身上投资了16亿美元。Sony paid .4 billion for control of its cellphone venture, Sony Ericsson, a stake in the record label EMI and other stuff.索尼花了84亿美元以控制手机企业索爱,且获得了百代唱片公司和其他公司的股份。This time really is different这次是真的与往昔不同In the past, Japanese firms would parachute in bosses from Tokyo to run the show.在过去,日本公司从东京空降一批高层来接管新兼并的企业,Many were monocultural and mediocre.很多高层人员近亲繁殖,水平一般。Now, Japanese firms wisely rely on local talent.现如今日本公司明智地依赖当地人才。Many of the new generation of Japanese executives have lived and worked abroad,许多新一代的高管们具有在国外生活和工作的经验。notes Shinsuke Tsunoda, the head of mergers and acquisitions in Japan at Nomura, a Japanese securities house.值得留意的有野村券交易所并购的Shinsuke Tsunoda领导。This means they are more comfortable doing deals with foreigners, and they are better at integrating the foreign firms they buy with their new Japanese owners.这意味着这些高层人员与外国人打交道更舒,而且他们能更好地整合所并购的海外企业而非本国企业。The foreign shopping spree is internationalising Japanese industry by the back door.抢滩国外市场使日本企业使通过幕后交易达到国际化目的。Japan Inc is acting like a massive sovereign-wealth fund, placing its money abroad to earn investment income at home.日本公司就像巨大的主权财富基金,将钱投资于国外为本国获得投资收入。When old people retire, they tend to live off their savings.当老人退休后,他们凭储蓄度日。They supply capital to younger, sprightlier, cash-strapped folk, who put it to work and pay dividends or interest to the retirees.并为年轻有为,朝气蓬勃且资金拮据的新一代提供资本用于投资。年轻人则付红利或利息给退休人员。That is, roughly speaking, what Asias ageing archipelago is starting to do.大致说来,这正是这个日益老龄化的亚洲群岛正开始做的事。 /201305/238482

  

  In the heat of the day, hunters can afford to slow down and rest in the shade. It’s one of the advantages of a high-protein diet. 在一天最热的时候,捕猎者们可以放缓脚步并在阴影中歇息。这就是高蛋白食物的好处之一。Llamas originated here in North America are the regular visitors to the spring. The strange-looking tapir is common too. And there’s another animal that’s even more bizarre, a glyptodont. 美洲驼便起源于北美这里,它们要是池塘的常客。长相奇怪的貘也是一样。而有一种动物却更为奇异——雕齿兽。This lumbering vegetarian is no threat to the llamas, but it does arouse their curiosity. 雕齿兽是一种食草动物,它对于美洲驼没有威胁,但是却激起了它们的好奇心。The glyptodont is short-sighted and wary, but it has little to fear from llamas. They are easily warned off and soon head back towards the spring. 雕齿兽目光短浅并十分机警,但是美洲驼对于它来说也并无可怕之处。它们只是互相警告打了个招呼,便很快继续朝着池塘前进了。But as the day cools down, another scent is in the air, alerting the tapir’s ultra-sensitive nose to danger. The llamas pick up the signals too. 但是当气温渐低时,另一种气味在空气中弥漫,警告着貘,这种嗅觉极为灵敏的动物,危险正在临近。美洲驼也感觉到了。It’s the jaguar, back on the prowl.是美洲虎在附近徘徊。英文文本来自普特英语,译文属未经许可不得转载。201310/260423

  Social attitudes社会态度Generation gap代沟Why a resurgence in support for the welfare state won’t help Labour为什么持福利国家的呼声重起不利于工党Sep 14th 2013 |From the print editionMANY reasons can be found why public support for Britain’s welfare system should be waning. The economy remains debt-ridden, the deficit large. Five more years of austerity will drain funding from services Britons cherish, like schools and the NHS. It explains why politicians talk of “strivers”, aiming to tap into a perceived view that those receiving benefits have it easy.可以找到很多公众持英国福利制度逐渐减弱的原因。经济仍然债台高筑,财政赤字巨大。接下来五年的财政紧缩会耗尽英国人珍惜的公共务所需资金,比如说学校和国民保健务。这解释了为什么政治家谈论“奋斗者”,目的在于改变人们的观点,说明上述福利来之不易。But new data suggest that politicians may have misjudged the public mood. The latest British Social Attitudes (BSA) survey, published on September 10th, revealed that sympathy for those on benefits, on a downwards trend since 1989, has started to rise. Those agreeing that benefits should “provide a decent standard of living for the unemployed” rose from 50% to 59% in the period between 2006 and 2012.但是,最新数据表明政治家可能误判了公众的情绪。发布于9月10日的最新的英国社会态度调查显示自1989年以来都呈下降趋势的同情那些福利的情绪开始上升。同意福利应该给失业者提供一个合适的生活标准的比例从2006年的50%上升到了2012年的59%。Those who thought benefits were “too high and discourage work” fell from 62% in 2011 to 51%, and more people thought cutting benefits “would damage too many people’s lives.” Alison Park, of the BSA team, says sympathy for benefits claimants often rises in recessions, but in this downturn the effect had not clearly appeared until this year’s data.认为福利太高,抑制了工作积极性的比例从2011年的62%下降到了现在的51%,越来越多的人认为削减福利会损害太多人的生活。英国社会态度调查团队的Alison Park表示,同情福利救济者的比例会在经济衰退期有所上升,但是在这个衰退期,知道今年的数据出来作用才变得清晰。Britons disagree on who should get cash, however. A report published by Demos, a think-tank, and Ipsos MORI, a pollster, showed that more than four-fifths of those born before 1965 would prioritise pensions over other benefits. Yet less than half of those born after 1980 would do so (see chart). Britons born before 1945 are less likely to support benefits for working-age groups than the average. Generations favour their own.然而,对谁应该获得救济资金,英国人有分歧。一个智囊团Demos和民意调查机构Ipsos MORI发表的一份报告显示,超过五分之四的1965年以前出生的人将优先考虑养老金。而1980年以后出生的人中只有不到一半的人持这样做。1945年以前出生的英国人更不可能持给适龄工作人员增加福利,低于平均持率。每一代人都维护自己的利益。With more cuts expected after the next general election, which part of the welfare budget to spare divides Britain’s political parties. The Conservatives have promised to exclude pensions from any spending cap. With their own pots safe, the BSA data suggests grey-haired voters might welcome other cuts. Only 10% of the pre-war generation regard unemployment benefit as a priority. Single parent handouts are especially unpopular with older Britons: only 3% support them.预计下一届大选之后福利削减会加大,福利预算的富裕与否是英国各政党之间的区别。保守党已经承诺排除养老金的付上限。英国社会态度数据显示,老年人自己的福利有保障之后,他们可能会欢迎其他福利的削减。只有10%的战前公民会优先选择失业福利。单亲救济在英国老年人中最不受欢迎,他们中只有3%的人持这项福利。Labour’s brand of austerity should appeal more to the young. They propose to cap pensions, and oppose further cuts to child and housing benefits. It may prove a risky strategy: 76% of over 65s turned out to vote at the last election, whereas only 44% of those aged 18-24 bothered to do so. Labour’s poll lead is aly dwindling, rising support for welfare may well quicken the pace.工党紧缩的形象对年轻人更有吸引力。他们提出限制养老金,反对对儿童和住房福利的进一步缩减。这可能是一项有风险的策略:上次选举的时候76%的65岁以上的民众参与选举,而18到24岁的民众只有44%的比例参与选举。工党的领先优势已经在减少了,对福利的持可能会加快其优势减少的步伐。201309/257606

  Science and technology科学技术The nature of humanity人类本质Whats a man?什么是人类Studies of brain genetics are starting to reveal what makes humans human大脑遗传研究,为你解开人之所以为人的奥秘THE problem with understanding human uniqueness is precisely that it is unique.研究人类独特性的难题在于这个独特性本身就很独特。Though the proper study of mankind may be man, that study will yield little if there is no reference point to compare man with.虽然人类研究的主体对象是人,但是如果没有比照对象的参与,研究很难有所突破。That, at least, is the philosophy of Svante Paabo of the Max Planck Institute for Evolutionary Anthropology, in Leipzig.至少,来自莱比锡马克斯普朗克进化人类研究所的斯万特帕珀是这样认为的。Dr Paabo, whose work on fossil DNA was the inspiration for Jurassic Park,帕珀士主要研究化石的DNA,正是受到《侏罗纪公园》启发,has since become interested in human evolution.他对人类进化史产生了浓厚的兴趣。To this end, he and his colleagues have sequenced the DNA of both Neanderthal man and an Asian species of prehistoric human,为了一探究竟,他和同事将穴居人和史前亚洲人种,the Denisovians, which Dr Paabos own work identified.帕珀士将其定义为丹尼索维亚人的DNA按序排列。Now he has turned his attentions to modern Homo sapiens.现在他又将注意力转移到了现代智人身上。In collaboration with a team from the Chinese Academy of Sciences,帕珀士和同事菲利普卡托维奇与中国科学院的科学家们相互合作,Dr Paabo and his colleague Philipp Khaitovich have compared genetic activity over the course of a lifetime in the brains of humans, chimpanzees and rhesus monkeys.将人类,猩猩,以及恒河猴有生之年的大脑遗传活动进行了比对。They have then matched what they found with what is known of Neanderthals,随后,他们将研究成果同穴居人研究成果相配对,and think they have thus discovered at least part of the genetic difference between Homo sapiens and the others that creates human uniqueness.并发现了智人和其他物种的差异,至少是部分差异。正是这些差异造就了人类独一无二的特性。Dr Paabo and his colleagues focused their examination,帕珀士和同事十分重视实验,just published in Genome Research, on two parts of the brain.他们只在《基因研究》杂志上刊登了大脑两个区域的研究成果。One was the dorsolateral prefrontal cortex,区域一是大脑背外侧前额皮层,which is the seat of abstract reasoning and social behaviour,things that humans are particularly good at.主管抽象思考和社交行为一类人类尤为擅长的活动。The other was the lateral cerebellar cortex, which is more to do with manual abilities.区域二是同动手能力联系密切的外侧小脑皮层。They extracted cells, post mortem, from people, chimps and monkeys of many ages, and looked at which genes had been active in these cells when the owners were alive.他们从不同年龄层的人类,黑猩猩以及猴子尸体上提取相关细胞,然后观察哪些基因在宿主存活时表现活跃。The vortex of the cortex皮层漩涡They did this by examining the RNA in the cells.他们通过检验细胞中的RNA来进行观察。RNA molecules are single-stranded copies of the double-helical DNA genes in the cell nucleus.RNA分子是细胞核内的双螺旋DNA基因的单链拷贝。Their job is to carry instructions from the genes to a cells protein-making machinery.RNA的工作是把基因的指令带到细胞的蛋白质形成机构内。Most primate genes have now been identified,现在大部分灵长类动物的基因都已被识别出来,so it is possible to make chips covered with complementary strands to the RNA messengers,所以人类可以制作一张芯片,在上面布满结构互补的单链RNA,to which these messengers will uniquely stick, and which thus act as probes for particular messenger molecules.因为信使RNA会与其紧密结合,所以可以专门用该芯片来搜寻携带遗传信息的分子。Using such chips, Dr Khaitovich and Dr Paabo were able to find out when, during the course of life, particular genes were active,卡托维奇士和帕珀士计算出了不同年龄段的不同个体的大脑的特定区域内每个基因细胞里的RNA数量,by working out how much RNA from each gene cells from particular parts of the brains of individuals of different ages contained.并利用该芯片,找出了一生中表现活跃的几个特定基因。Their results fell into six categories.以下是他们的六大发现。First, they found some genes whose expression patterns over a lifetime were uniquely human and others that were uniquely chimpanzee.发现一,有的基因的表达方式为人类特有,有的为猩猩特有,Second, they discovered that there were more uniquely human expression patterns than uniquely chimp ones.发现二,人类特有的基因表达要多于猩猩。Third, unique human expression patterns were more common in the prefrontal cortex than in the cerebellum.发现三,人类特有的基因表达多出现与前额叶皮层,而不是小脑。Fourth, though these uniquely expressed genes were most active in the young of all species,发现四,尽管这些物种特有的表达基因最活跃的时期都在青年期,their period of activity was several years longer in humans than in the others.但是人类基因的活跃期较长,能持续数年。Fifth, the activities of a lot of the uniquely active genes seemed to be correlated:发现五,许多活跃基因所进行的活动是相互联系的:the researchers identified seven groups of genes which each seemed to be working as a module.研究者发现了七组基因,似乎每一组都是独立的单元。And sixth, these modular genes seem to be involved in the crucial job of linking nerve cells together through junctions called synapses.发现六:这些单位基因组似乎在担子不轻,它们要经过各个枢纽将神经细胞连接到一起,这些枢纽名叫突触。To summarise, human beings have suites of genes that probably cause their brains to be plastic,总之,人类特有的一套套基因让大脑具备了可塑性,and thus receptive to change far longer than is true for chimps or monkeys.而且应变能力的维持时间要远远长于猩猩和猴子的大脑。Moreover, Dr Khaitovich was able to work out how the expression of these modules of genes was co-ordinated,另外,卡托维奇士通过观察控制基因单位的开关,by looking at the switches, known as transcription factors, that turn them on and off.也就是众所周知的转录因子,已经能够解答各个基因单位的表达是如何协调的问题。Indeed, by comparing modern genomes with their discoveries about Neanderthals Dr Paabos group has found that the regulatory process for one of the modules came into existence after the modern human and Neanderthal lines separated from one another, about 300,000 years ago.的确,通过比对现代人基因组和穴居人研究成果,帕珀士一行人已经发现了某组基因的调节过程,早在30万年前,当现代人类从穴居人家系中分离出来时,该组基因就已存在。Unfortunately, it is not possible to look at the expression pattern of genes in Neanderthals, and it probably never will be.然而不幸的是,现在已经无法观察穴居人的基因表达方式,而且可能再也看不到了。But it might be possible, as knowledge advances, to reconstruct part of it from a better understanding of that extinct speciess DNA.但是随着知识的积累,科学倒是家可以凭借对已消亡的物种的DNA更深入的了解,将穴居人的部分基因重现出来。Pleistocene Park, anybody?拍一部《更新世公园》,怎么样? /201403/280499

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