Monday, 7 July 2014

World's languages traced back to single African mother tongue: scientists

Africa language 2011 4 15

New Zealand researchers have traced every human language — from English to Mandarin — back to an ancestral language spoken in Africa 50,000 to 70,000 years ago.

Scientists say they have traced the world's 6,000 modern languages — from English to Mandarin — back to a single "mother tongue," an ancestral language spoken in Africa 50,000 to 70,000 years ago.

New research, published in the journal Science, suggests this single ancient language resulted in human civilization — a Diaspora — as well as advances in art and hunting tool technology, and laid the groundwork for all the world's cultures.

The research, by Quentin Atkinson from the University of Auckland in New Zealand, also found that speech evolved far earlier than previously thought. And the findings implied, though did not prove, that modern language originated only once, an issue of controversy among linguists, according to the New York Times.

Before Atkinson came up with the evidence for a single African origin of language, some scientists had argued that language evolved independently in different parts of the world.

Atkinson found that the first populations migrating from Africa laid the groundwork for all the world's cultures by taking their single language with them. "It was the catalyst that spurred the human expansion that we all are a product of," Atkinson said, the Wall Street Journal reported.

Atkinson traced the number distinct sounds, or phonemes — consonants, vowels and tones — in 504 world languages, finding compelling evidence that they can be traced back to a long-forgotten dialect spoken by our Stone Age ancestors, according to the Daily Mail.

Atkinson also hypothesized that languages with the most sounds would be the oldest, while those spoken by smaller breakaway groups would utilize fewer sounds as variation and complexity diminished.

The study found that some of the click-using languages of Africa have more than 100 phonemes, or sounds, whereas Hawaiian, toward the far end of the human migration route out of Africa, has only 13, the Times reported. English has about 45 phonemes.


Black people were denied vanilla ice cream in the Jim Crow south – except on Independence Day

black girl ice cream

One result of legalized racism in America was this strange limit, which helped teach kids the rules of a segregated society.

By custom rather than by law, black folks were best off if they weren't caught eating vanilla ice cream in public in the Jim Crow South, except – the narrative always stipulates – on the Fourth of July. I heard it from my father growing up myself, and the memory of that all-but-unspoken rule seems to be unique to the generation born between World War I and World War II.

But if Maya Angelou hadn't said it in her classic autobiography I Know Why the Caged Bird Sings, I doubt anybody would believe it today.

People in Stamps used to say that the whites in our town were so prejudiced that a Negro couldn't buy vanilla ice cream. Except on July Fourth. Other days he had to be satisfied with chocolate.

Vanilla ice cream – flavored with a Nahuatl spice indigenous to Mexico, the cultivation of which was improved by an enslaved black man named Edmund Albius on the colonized Réunion island in the Indian Ocean, now predominately grown on the largest island of the African continent, Madagascar, and served wrapped in the conical invention of a Middle Eastern immigrant – was the symbol of the American dream. That its pure, white sweetness was then routinely denied to the grandchildren of the enslaved was a dream deferred indeed.

What makes the vanilla ice cream story less folk memory and more truth is that the terror and shame of living in the purgatory between the Civil War and civil rights movement was often communicated in ways that reinforced to children what the rules of that life were, and what was in store for them if they broke them.

My father, for instance, first learned the rules when he first visited South Carolina with my grandfather in the 1940s. In our family's home county of Lancaster, Daddy asked the general store owner if he could buy some candy and ice cream, referring to the white man as "Sir". The store owner promptly grabbed my father by the collar, and yelled at him in the presence of my grandfather. Then he informed the elder man, "You'd better teach this little nigger to say 'Yassuh', boy! 'Sir' ain't good enough!" My grandfather grabbed his son and sped off.

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Police arrest son for killing father in Redemption Camp

Ogun State Commissioner of Police, Ikemefuna Okoye
Ogun State Commissioner of Police, Ikemefuna Okoye

The Ogun State Police Command has arrested one Tolani Ajayi, 21, for allegedly killing his father, Mr. Charles Ajayi(SAN), at the Redemption Camp, along the Lagos-Ibadan Expressway in the early hours of July 3.

A statement by the Police Public Relations Officer in the command, Olumuyiwa Adejobi, on Sunday said the body of Ajayi, 60,was recovered in a bush at Canaan Land Street, RCCG  Camp, in a box where the body was kept after the Senior Advocate of Nigeria was killed by his son.

The suspect, said to be a 300-Level student of the Department of History and International Relations of Redeemer University, located at the Redemption Camp, Mowe in Ogun State, was picked up by the police in his late father’s residence at about 5.30pm on Thursday after what the police described as preliminary findings.

The command’s statement read in part, “The DPO, Redemption Camp, SP Olaiya Martins, had led a team of detectives and some members of the community, who noticed the strange attitude of the suspect while dumping a box, to the point, where the body of the late SAN was dumped.

“They thereafter traced  the ground  marks of the dragged box from where  the suspect  dumped the dad’s corpse to the house of the Senior Advocate of Nigeria,where they met the suspect in a relaxed mood. Upon interrogation, the suspect earlier lied  that his dad had gone on evangelism before he eventually confessed to the crime when he was taken to the Redemption Camp Divisional Headquarters.

“He stated further that the problem arose when his father confronted him for not responding to all the prayer points he(the deceased) was calling, claiming that the father slapped him. He said he went ‘mad’ and picked up a knife from the kitchen to stab him(father) and later a cutlass to cut his throat.”


Cristiano Ronaldo refuse to exchange Jersey with Israel players

Cristiano Ronaldo Receiving The Ballon d'Or Award

Ronaldo said:

“I do not exchange my shirt with ASSASSINS”

This was a phrase used by the Portuguese star at a meeting after a playoff between Israel and Portugal before the World Cup.

After the match, an Israeli player removing his shirt offered it to Ronaldo, who refused because he could not agree to wear a jersey on which there was the flag of the State of Israel.

In the locker room when reporters asked him why he had refused to exchange his jersey, he said “I do not exchange my shirt with murderers”  (Google English translation).

Football Star Cristiano Ronaldo

A Real Euro-star: Cristiano Ronaldo, who became the world’s most expensive footballer when he joined Real Madrid for £80 million from Manchester United, made his full international debut for Portugal in 2003.

This is not the first time the Portuguese star Ronaldo has shown his solidarity with Palestinians, last year he auctioned off his soccer boot in gold, to help Palestinian victims of Israeli bombing.

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Miss World 2014 - Final Venue!

We are thrilled to announce that the Miss World Final will be held in December at ExCeL London!

Miss World will embrace the Christmas Spirit in a city famed for its seasonal celebrations. Throughout their stay, the contestants will visit historic venues, attend an array of festive events, and compete in the variety of sub-contests in the lead up to the Grand Final.

ICC Auditorium: Has played host to many high profile events, including the UK X Factor!

Situated in a stunning waterfront location, ExCeL London is located in the heart of London’s Royal Docks, within easy reach of central London.

Miss World will be held in the state of the art ICC Auditorium, the largest flexible auditorium in the UK, making it the perfect choice for Miss World which promises to be a great setting for the 2014 competition!

More news on special events taking place during the Miss World 2014 to come soon!


World Cup 2014: The top 10 goalkeepers in Brazil

Manuel Neuer

1 Manuel Neuer Germany

Cristiano Ronaldo got an early clue that this was not going to be his tournament when Neuer produced a superb save from a stoppage-time free-kick to prevent Portugal from salvaging even a sliver of consolation from their crushing defeat by Germany. But it is not his shot-stopping that has distinguished Neuer, it is the way he has practically redefined the role of goalkeeper, taking the sweeper-keeper function to an extreme never before showcased with such success.

His charges out of his box prevented Algeria, in particular, from revelling in the space behind Germany’s high defensive line, compensating for Per Mertesacker’s lack of pace. In addition to the obvious effectiveness, the sight of the hulking keeper hurtling towards confrontation must have a potent mindgame value – Asamoah Gyan, for instance, fled ridiculously wide when presented with the chance to take on Neuer one-on-one. What is more, Neuer’s superb distribution makes him the first line of attack.

2 Guillermo Ochoa Mexico

Way to ace a job interview. Ochoa, a free agent after three outstanding seasons at Ajaccio, was unlikely to be short of offers before the tournament but his displays for Mexico may have endeared him to a new calibre of recruiter. The 28-year-old’s agility, reflexes and robust wrists enabled him to make an array of improbable saves. Brazil players wondered whether there had been divine intervention when he helped Mexico to draw against them, while it took some devilry from Arjen Robben to beat Ochoa in the end.

3 Keylor Navas Costa Rica

The 27-year-old came into the tournament after a wonderful season in which he set a clean-sheet record for Levante but it has still been a major surprise to see Costa Rica advance to the quarter-finals while conceding only two goals in five matches – Uruguay, Italy, England, Greece and Holland. Behind a solid unit, Navas was a secure presence. As the pressure increased, his performances rose accordingly, with his exhibitions of shot-stopping against Greece and Holland among the highlights of the tournament.

4 Vincent Enyeama Nigeria

Another goalkeeper who arrived after a record-breaking season at club level. Enyeama carried on the form that made him nigh-on unbeatable for Lille, pulling off a series of extraordinary saves, starting in the first match against Iran, when Nigeria dominated but would have lost if the goalkeeper had not kept enough concentration to tip away a header from Reza Ghoochannejhad. He then kept Bosnia-Herzegovina at bay before thwarting Lionel Messi and Argentina for long periods despite conceding three. When a goalkeeper falls below perfection, however, he can be punished severely and Enyeama’s mishandling of a cross against France enabled Paul Pogba to score the winning goal and ruined another otherwise immaculate performance.

5 Tim Howard USA

Even though he made a tournament-record number of saves against Belgium, the American’s shot-stopping was not the most admirable aspect of his performances in Brazil – and not only because most of Belgium’s efforts were straight at the goalkeeper, their forwards’ odd lack of composure seemingly making them unable to spot Howard’s tendency to go low prematurely, a habit that Nani had exploited earlier. That quibble aside, Howard’s influence seemed immense as his leadership helped coax valiant resistance from defenders who might otherwise have been torn apart. He inspired his team-mates with words and deeds.

6 Rais M’Bolhi Algeria

The Algeria No1 did not arrive in Brazil with a big reputation. In fact the Hearts manager, Robbie Nielsen, admitted this month that he had no recollection of M’Bohli being at the Scottish club and they are one of nine sides where he did a stint before joining his present employer, CSKA Sofia, where he is not a regular starter. Like many of his team-mates, he earned new respect. His display against Germany was the crowning glory, as he repelled a fusillade with some spectacular blocks such as the reflex stop from a close-range Thomas Müller or, best of all, a diving, fingertip save to push a Philipp Lahm drive just round a post. Unforgettable.

7 Júlio César Brazil

Researchers and sports scientists spend lots of time and money trying to figure out how best to prepare for tournaments but none of them has ever submitted a thesis recommending a year on the Loftus Road bench followed by a sojourn in the boondocks of Toronto FC. But that was César’s prelude to this World Cup and the 34-year-old has so far justified the manager’s decision to keep faith with him. He made sharp saves from Luka Modric and Ivan Perisic to prevent Brazil from suffering a shock defeat in the opening game and made an outstanding save in normal time against Chile to keep out a shot from Charles Aránguiz. Before the shootout he told his team-mates to “hit them with confidence and I’ll stop three” and then turned away efforts from Mauricio Pinilla and Alexis Sánchez before Gonzalo Jara tried too hard to put the ball out of the goalkeeper’s reach and hit a post.

8 Thibaut Courtois Belgium

Playing in front of Courtois must give defenders the same sense of security that a slight time delay gives live broadcasters, who thus know they may escape punishment for any goof. Belgium did not sparkle in this tournament but nor did they ever really look in danger – except in the dying stages of the game against the USA, and in their moment of greatest need Courtois was on hand to bail them out, making a top block to thwart Clint Dempsey after a smart free-kick. And while Belgium left the tournament with a whimper, Courtois at least showed that his own defiance remained intact as he made a splendid late save to foil Lionel Messi.

9 David Ospina Colombia

Colombia entertained with their attacking play but on the rare occasion that their defence was infiltrated, Ospina proved a reliable guardian. His display in the second-half against Uruguay was especially impressive as he made four crucial stops to preserve his team’s lead, including one excellent intervention to deny Maxi Pereira. In the end it took a scrambled goal from Thiago Silva and an odd swirling free-kick to confound the Colombia No1.

10 Tim Krul Holland

Was he really a penalty-saving specialist before Louis van Gaal introduced him from the bench just seconds before the quarter-final shootout against Costa Rica? His record did not suggest so but the unusual substitution planted the idea in the opposition’s mind and Krul’s two saves mean that now he really can be considered a specialist. A bluff that became a truth: masterful.