American scientists claim they have succeeded in creating mosquitoes that can fight off malaria. The scientists have inserted a new gene into the DNA of mosquitoes that could prevent them from spreading the infection to humans. Mosquitoes bite people and infect human blood with malaria.
Over 3 billion people, about 40% of the world’s population, are in danger of becoming infected with malaria. The disease kills over half a million people every year. Over 80% of all deaths occur in Africa.
Scientists have been working hard to find ways of stopping the spread of malaria. Genetically modified mosquitoes would be able to resist the disease and stop it from spreading to humans. The new mosquitoes could be released in a tropical region, from where they could could spread to almost 99% of the whole mosquito population within a year .
Although such a new insect would not completely erase malaria from the face of the earth it could help lower the risk of getting infected. Together with new effective medicine malaria infections could be reducedsubstantially.
In other experiments, scientists have been trying to make mosquitoes infertile. As a result, they would ultimately die out . Environmentalists , however, warn that such a measure could have an undesiredimpact on the environment.
although = while
billion = a thousand million
DNA = substance that carries the genetic information in cells
effective = something that works well
environment = the world around us
environmentalist = person who is worried about nature
erase = remove completely
face of the earth = here: surface
gene = part of a cell in a living thing that controls how it looks and grows
genetically modified = to change a plant, animal or insect so that it becomes stronger
measure = act
malaria = disease that you get in a tropical country when a mosquito bites you
impact = effect, result
infertile = not being able to produce young mosquitoes
insert = put into
lower = reduce
occur = happen, take place
prevent = stop
reduce = lower
release = set free
resist = here: not be affected by the disease
scientist = a person who works in a lab and is trained in science
The most successful science fiction series of all times – Star Trek – is expected to return to television in 2017. CBS has announced that the new series will be shown exclusively on CBS’s on demand service. Next year marks the 50th anniversary of the original Star Trek series. The news comes as a big treat for millions of “trekkies” around the world.
According to CBS, the new show will introduce new fascinating worlds and new characters, who are prepared to “boldly go where no man has gone before”. Since the original series was shown in the 1960s there have been a number of full-length movies of Star Trek , as well as 5 follow-up series. The last one, Star Trek: Enterprise ended in 2005. The new show is expected to be made with new filming technology, which wasn’t available 10 years ago.
CBS hopes the new Star Trek will attract new viewers, especially those who watch entertainment on Internet streaming sites.
according to = as said by …
anniversary = date on which something happened in the past
announce = to say officially
attract = be interesting for …
available = offered; to be had
boldly = not afraid of taking risks
especially = above all
exclusively = only
follow-up = here: the series that came after the original one
full-length = not an episode of a series, but a longer film you can watch in the cinema
on demand = only shown on TV if you want to see it; normally you have to pay for such services
A new $1 billion city is being built in the desert of New Mexico. However, the city will be different from many other cities around the world. Nobody will be living in it, but thousands of people will be working there. The new city of the future will be a gigantic practice area, to which companies can come and try out new projects.
CITE, which stands for Center for Innovation, Testing and Evaluation, is a project of a fake American town. In an area of about 15 square miles companies can carry out projects in transport, security, farming and communications. The information collected will be sent to a large underground IT center.The managing directors of the project say that without any people getting in the way, urban technologies can be developed and tested more quickly. Such new technologies range from driver-less cars, intelligent transportation systems, to new energy-saving devices or concepts of city farming.
The city will offer everything that a conventional city has – office buildings, churches, schools, recreational areas and shopping malls. Its founders say they want to give testers as much of a real environment as possible.
The project’s founders have had trouble finding the right place for CITE. In the end, the New Mexican desert was chosen as the location of the high tech city, which should begin operations in 2018.
billion = a thousand million
concept = plan
conventional = traditional; everyday
develop = grow, make
device = small machine or object that does a certain job
fake = not real
founder = person who has invented or started something
getting in the way = here: interfere with; get involved in a disturbing way
gigantic = very, very large
however = but
managing directors = the people who operate and are in charge of the project
operations = here: start working
range = go from …. to …
real environment = here: the real world around us, in which we live
The Chinese government has announced the end of its one-child policy. It has been in effect since 1979 and has slowed down population growth in China for over three decades. Without the policy, China would probably have a total of 1.7 billion people instead of the 1.3 billion it has today. Now Chinese couples can officially have two children.
The decision comes at a time when Chinese authorities are worried about their country’s ageing population. China’s economic growth is endangered because fewer young workers are entering the workforce. At the moment , about a third of China’s population is over 50. By 2050, over 35 % of the population will be over 65.
China started its family planning policy, aimed at slowing down population growth, at the end of the 1970s. Couples who had a second child had to pay fines and suffered from disadvantages at work. The single child of a family was supported by state benefits and free education up to a university degree. While this policy focused mainly on urban areas, families in rural China were allowed to have two children if the first was a girl. The policy led to hundreds of thousands of abortions over the decades. Illegally-born girls were often laid away or adopted by westerners. This has led to a gender imbalance in China.
Human rights organizations continue to criticize China’s population planning. They say the new regulations simply change a one-child policy into a two-child policy. Women still do not have the right to determine how many children they want to have.
abortion =the killing of an unborn baby
aim = target
announce = to say in public; officially
authorities = government organizations that have power
benefits = here:money given by the state
couple = man and woman who live together or are married
decade = ten years
degree = you get it when you finish the university; a title that you can use with your name
determine = decide
disadvantage = bad side of something
endangered = in danger
family planning = to control the number of children a family has
fine = money that you pay as a punishment
focus = concentrate on
gender imbalance = when there are more men than women or the other way around
government = the people who rule a country
growth = the way something becomes larger
human rights = the basic rights that everyone should have
Sweden, one of the world’s most advanced countries, has started to introduce a six-hour work day for its employees. Around the country companies are making this change in order to make workers more productive and happier. At the same time breaks and meetings are kept to a minimum at work, so that workers can concentrate on their job and not get distracted.
Labour experts say that the traditional eight-hour work day is very hard to endure. Workers cannot focus on their job for such a long period of time. On the other hand many workers have a hard time going through their private life after a hard day at work. Health experts say, that after six hours of focused work, people still have enough energy to do things at home.
The change comes at a time when many employees around the world work 50 to 60 hours and more a week. Some of them are in danger of burning out after a certain time. Working long hours raises the danger of heart attacks, strokes and other illnesses. The Swedish model hopes for workers to be able to work through to a higher age and not retire 65.
advanced = well-developed; rich
break = pause from work
burn out = to work so hard that you get very tired and cannot work any more because you are not able to think clearly
certain = special
concentrate = focus on; put your attention on
distracted = unable to concentrate because you are thinking about something else
employee = a person who works for a company
endure = to be in a difficult situation for a long time without complaining about it
heart attack = when you heart suddenly stops beating
labour = work
productive = to produce a lot in a certain time
raise = go up
retire = stop working because you have become too old
stroke = when a blood vessel in the brain suddenly breaks apart or is blocked; people who suffer a stroke may not be able to move parts of their body or cannot talk any more
Instagram, the most popular photo-sharing site in the world, is five years old. Over four hundred million users document their lives in pictures and share up to 80 million photos every day. As a special treat, Instagram is publishing the most popular photos in its five-year history.
The Internet company was founded by Kevin Systrom and Mike Krieger in 2010. At that time neither of them thought they would be on to something that big. As it turned out, Instagram became an immediatesuccess. As more and more mobile phones were equipped with digital cameras, millions of people started taking selfies and posted them on social media sites. As time went on, more and more celebrities, politicians and other famous people started sharing their pictures with their fan community.
There are many reasons for Instagram’s success. For one, you can share pictures and videos across other social media sites. Back in 2010 many users were frustrated at how slow uploading photos was. Instagram makes them much smaller and improves uploading speed. Furthermore, Instagram allows you not only to upload photos, but to edit them and give them a more interesting appearance.
In 2012 Facebook bought Instagram for a billion dollars . As a result, the social media giant has invested millions to make Instagram even more attractive for users.
Currently, Taylor Swift, Kim Kardashian and Beyonce are the top celebrities on Instagram with about 45 million followers each.
appearance = looks
attractive = to have something that makes you want to use it
be on to = here: find something new and successful
celebrity = famous person
currently = at the moment ; now
document =write about something and record information about it
edit = change
equip = to have a certain tool that is needed
fan community = all the people who like you and want to find out more about your life
frustrated = angry
found – founded = start something new
furthermore =in addition; also
immediate = at once; quick
politician = person who works in the government or in a public position
popular = well-known, liked by many people
publish = release; give to the public
share = to have or use with other people
speed = how fast something is
success = when you achieve what you want to
treat = something special that you give to a person
The South Korean government has banned the use of a mobile phone app that monitors social media activities of parents’ children. Government officials say that the app, called Smart Sheriff, has been removed from Google’s Play store because of safety issues.
In April South Korea’s government passed a law in which all smartphones sold to teenagers under 18 must have a monitoring software installed with which parents can find out where there children are and what they are doing. Smart Sheriff, an app approved by the government, became extremely popular and rose to the number one spot quickly. The app aims at keeping young adults and children safe from pornography , bullying and other dangers on the Internet.
Recently, software experts have found out that the app has security risks that may invite hackers to get into mobile phones and use personal information that is stored there. The app’s makers were given time to fix their software but apparentlyfailed to make Smart Sheriff safe enough to use. The government then decided to ban the software completely, but they admit that there is no way of knowing whether other software companies also have security problems in their apps.
activity = something that you do
admit = to agree that something is true
aim = to try to reach something
apparently = if you are not sure about something
approve = accept
ban = to forbid
fail = not succeed; not make something work
government = the people who rule a country
invite = let in
monitor = watch
number one spot = top of the list
official = someone who is in a higher position in the government
popular = well-known, liked by many
recently = only a short time ago
safety issue = here: problems that may lead to a da ngerous situation
The American space agency NASA has recently found out that Antarctica’s ice sheet is growing. Satellite images show that between 1992 and 2001 ice on the southernmost continent grew at a rate of 112 billion tons a year. After that the ice sheets still became bigger, but at a slower pace.
The new discovery comes at a time when many scientists claim that, due to global warming, the ice on Earth is melting away. In another discovery , scientists have found out that some parts of Antarctica are becoming higher, but they say this is because of more snowfall in the area.
According to NASA, global warming has led to rising temperatures, thus making it possible for more snow to fall on the continent. As a result the snow becomes more compact and eventually turns into ice. In the future NASA hopes to measure ice thickness more exactly when they plan to launch new satellites into space by 2018.
according to = as said by …
claim = to say that something is true
discovery = when you find important information for the first time
due to = because of
eventually = slowly
ice sheet = cover of ice over an area of land
launch = start, send
measure = to find the size or length of something
pace = speed
rate = speed
recently = only a short time ago
southernmost = furthest south
space agency = organization that controls the launching of spacecraft in a country