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Simputer: The Low-cost Computer

September 23: For all those who thought computers were expensive items and not in the list of "essential buys", think again. A new computer is here, priced at an easily affordable Rs 9,000 (about $200)! And cheaper than a colour TV. Does that grab your attention?It is called Simputer. And it's the answer to your prayers.As the name suggests,...

Super Moms

Japan: Mothers for peaceDid you know that mothers in Japan were among the first to protest against nuclear weapons? This happened 45 years ago, in 1955.In 1945, at the fag end of the Second World War, the US dropped atomic bombs on the Japanese cities of Hiroshima and Nagasaki. The bombs killed 3,40,000 people. About 300,000 were...

A Monster in Tokyo…

It happened one evening in May, 53 years ago, in 1947. Many people in Tokyo had switched on to the American Armed Forces Radio Station. It was two years since the Second World War had ended and Japan had been defeated. But the Americans were still around. And so was their radio station.Around 7 pm, the radio programme was...

Sadako’s Cranes

Sadako’s Cranes
The atom bomb was dropped on Hiroshima ten years ago. I lived a mile away from the city so nothing much happened to me, though the city and its people were burnt. The bomb didn’t do anything to me -- so I thought for ten years.I love running. A few months ago, while I was practising for a relay...

Three Nations or One?

August 19: Tang Weijiang is an angry man. He is suing the famous Japanese company Canon for causing him mental distress! Reason - Tang, a Chinese, was furious that the company making a particular brand of printer, in its publicity video, had given the impression that China, Hong Kong and Taiwan were three separate countries.He is demanding $12 million...

Rabindranath Tagore

Rabindranath Tagore
Mystic, painter and Nobel laureate for literature, Rabindranath Tagore was a prolific writer (3,000 poems, 2,000 songs, 8 novels, 40 volumes of essays and short stories, 50 plays), who drew inspiration both from his native Bengal and from English literary tradition. His major theme was humanity's search for God and truth. He was awarded the Nobel Prize in Literature...

Can a Fish be an Amphibian?

Mudskipper fish
The fish actually looks like it was cursed by a fairy to turn into a frog and the curse stopped working half way! It is called the mudskipper. Because it lives in swamps and estuaries with mud banks. An estuary is a place where a river meets the sea.It can crawl and jump over land too. It actually has...

The Joy of Flying

Come Independence Day and the markets are flooded with kites. The sky looks like an ocean swarming with tiny tadpoles swimming across from one place to the other. Colourful tadpoles, though!Although kite flying has been popular in India for hundreds of years, historians believe that kite flying originated in China almost 3,000 years ago. There are many stories, which...

Is Bamboo a Grass!

Is bamboo a grass?
If you look at a blade of grass and a bamboo tree they remind you of a mouse and an elephant. But unlike those animals, the grass and the bamboo belong to the same family. They are brothers! The bamboo is the largest member of the grass family.It grows in Asia, South America and Africa. It has about 500...

The Whale Hunt is On

A sperm whale family
Japan has sent out a fleet of ships on a two-month mission. Officials say that the expedition has a harmless aim: it is merely a survey to collect data on the Bryde, Sperm and Minke whales' habitats, diet and migration patterns.But the environmentalists are up in arms against them. What has shocked them is the Japanese intent to catch...

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