Friday, January 1, 2010

GOOD NIGHT’S SLEEP IS LIFE’S ‘GREATEST PLEASURE’

Some of the little pleasures of life have no price tag on them - just like a good night’s sleep. Good night's sleep is life's 'greatest little pleasure' ``````

Curling up in bed after a long day and waking up feeling completely refreshed the following morning is so good that it has been voted life’s ‘greatest little pleasure’, reports The Telegraph.

In the study of 3,000 Brits, a tenner in your pocket came second, closely followed by cuddling up to a loved-one in bed.

Rob Stacey spokesman for Batchelors Cup-a-Soup, which carried out the poll, said: ‘You can’t beat the feeling of getting into bed after a long, hard day.

‘And that feeling gets even better when you wake up feeling great and back to your normal self the following morning. ‘We don’t always need something major to happen to brighten up our day - sometimes the little things have just as much of an effect.

‘Often the little gestures such as a quick cuddle or a compliment can really help to cheer someone up if they are having a bad day, and can even be more welcome than splashing out on expensive presents.’

Top 50 greatest little pleasures in life:

1. A good night’s sleep
2. Finding a forgotten tenner in your pocket
3. Cuddling up with a partner in bed
4. Crying with laughter
5. Having a lie-in
6. Sleeping in newly laundered bedding
7. Getting a bargain
8. Making someone smile
9. Catching up with an old friend
10. Laughing at things that have happened in the past
11. Eating a Sunday roast with your family
12. Someone saying you look nice
13. Curling up on the sofa with a good book and a hot drink or soup
14. discovering you’ve lost a few pounds
15. Breakfast in bed
16. Waking up thinking it’s a work day and then realising it’s the weekend
17. A random person smiling at you in the street
18. Looking through old photo albums
19. Eating a takeaway
20. First snow fall of the year
21. Singing your heart out to your favourite song in car
22. Having lunch with friends
23. Listening to a baby laughing
24. Having a massage
25. Reading a book or listening to your iPod on holiday by the pool
26. Playing in snow
27. Finding a pair of jeans that fit perfectly
28. Being chatted up
29. A girly-night in
30. A pampering session at home
31. The smell of freshly cut grass
32. Sitting in the pub with your friends
33. Looking at a baby asleep in a cot
34. Waking up in a room with an amazing view
35. Clothes shopping
36. Receiving a letter from a friend
37. Fitting into an old pair of jeans again after losing some weight
38. Staying up all night getting to know someone special
39. Your mum’s cooking
40. Getting dressed up for a night out
41. Watching a live band
42. Drinking a cold beer after work
43. Browsing in a secondhand book shop
44. Going to the cinema
45. Getting a new hairstyle
46. Your queue being the quickest in the supermarket
47. The cold side of the pillow
48. Watching a DVD
49. Getting tipsy
50. Popping bubble wrap.

SCIENTISTS WRITING FOOLPROOF SECURITY CODE


We often see websites asking us to key in wavy letters into a box to prevent computer robots from hacking into servers and databases. But these codes, which are becoming increasingly complex for an average person, are not immune to security breaches.

A project led by Danny Cohen-Or, computer science professor at the Tel Aviv University (TAU), shows how a new kind of video captcha code may be harder to outsmart. Captcha technology is intended to block spam e-mail and automated systems.

"Humans have a very special skill that computer bots have not yet been able to master," says Cohen-Or. "We can see what's called an 'emergence image' - an object on a computer screen that becomes recognisable only when it's moving - and identify this image in a matter of seconds."

"While a person can't 'see' the image as a stationary object on a mottled background, it becomes part of our gestalt as it moves, allowing us to recognize and process it."

The study was co-authored with colleagues in Taiwan, Saudi Arabia and India. Cohen-Or describes a synthesis technique that generates pictures of 3-D objects, like a running man or a flying airplane.

This technique, he says, will allow security developers to generate an infinite number of moving "emergence" images that will be virtually impossible for any computer algorithm to decode.

'Emergence,' as defined by researchers, is a unique human ability to collect fragments of seemingly useless information, then synthesize and perceive it as an identifiable whole.

So far, computers don't have this skill. "Computer vision algorithms are completely incapable of effectively processing emergence images," says Cohen-Or's colleague and study co-author Lior Wolf.

The scientists warn that it will take some time before this research can be applied in the real world."We're not claiming in our research paper that we've developed a whole new captcha technology," says Cohen-Or.

"But we are taking a step towards that - something that could lead to a much better captcha, to highlight the big difference between men and bots," concludes Cohen-Or.

"If it were to be turned into a solution, however, we wouldn't be able to give humans a multiple choice answer or common word answer for what they see, so we'll need to develop a way to use it. We have a few ideas in the works."

The researchers are also developing methods of automatically generating "hidden" images in a natural background, like a pastoral mountain setting - a digital "Where's Waldo?" game.

"We're trying to hide images like eagles or a lion in mountainscape," says Cohen-Or. Because the moving image blends into a static background, it's hard for bots to understand what the human eye perceives with only minimal training.

1 comment:

Maroussia said...

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