Tuesday October 16, 2018

If you are running out of Ideas for your New Year’s Resolution, Try Running!

The runners, overall, showed greater functional connectivity or connections between distinct brain regions

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Two people running. Pixabay
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New York, December 15, 2016: If you are running out of ideas for your New Year’s resolution, consider running. Researchers have found that runners show greater functional connectivity in brain regions important for tasks such as planning and decision-making.

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“These activities (such as running) that people consider repetitive actually involve many complex cognitive functions — like planning and decision-making — that may have effects on the brain,” said one of the researchers David Raichlen, Associate Professor at University of Arizona, at Tucson in the United States.

For the study, the researchers compared brain scans of young adults engaged in cross-country running to young adults who do not engage in regular physical activity.

Participants were roughly the same age — 18 to 25 — with comparable body mass index and educational levels.

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The runners, overall, showed greater functional connectivity — or connections between distinct brain regions — within several areas of the brain, including the frontal cortex, which is important for cognitive functions such as planning, decision-making and the ability to switch attention between tasks.

The findings, published in the journal Frontiers in Human Neuroscience, suggest that running may affect the structure and function of the brain in ways similar to complex tasks like playing a musical instrument.

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Since functional connectivity often appears to be altered in ageing adults, and particularly in those with Alzheimer’s or other neurodegenerative diseases, it is an important measure to consider, Gene Alexander, Professor at University of Arizona, noted. (IANS)

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Aadhaar Helpline Mystery: French Security Expert Tweets of doing a Full Disclosure Tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App

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Pichai met with senior Republicans on Friday to discuss their concerns, House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy said. Wikimedia Commons

Google’s admission that it had in 2014 inadvertently coded the 112 distress number and the UIDAI helpline number into its setup wizard for Android devices triggered another controversy on Saturday as India’s telecom regulator had only recommended the use of 112 as an emergency number in April 2015.

After a large section of smartphone users in India saw a toll-free helpline number of UIDAI saved in their phone-books by default, Google issued a statement, saying its “internal review revealed that in 2014, the then UIDAI helpline number and the 112 distress helpline number were inadvertently coded into the SetUp wizard of the Android release given to OEMs for use in India and has remained there since”.

Aadhaar Helpline Number Mystery: French security expert tweets of doing a full disclosure tomorrow about Code of the Google SetUP Wizard App, Image: Wikimedia Commons.

However, the Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) recommended only in April 2015 that the number 112 be adopted as the single emergency number for the country.

According to Google, “since the numbers get listed on a user’s contact list, these get  transferred accordingly to the contacts on any new device”.

Google was yet to comment on the new development.

Meanwhile, French security expert that goes by the name of Elliot Alderson and has been at the core of the entire Aadhaar controversy, tweeted on Saturday: “I just found something interesting. I will probably do full disclosure tomorrow”.

“I’m digging into the code of the @Google SetupWizard app and I found that”.

“As far as I can see this object is not used in the current code, so there is no implications. This is just a poor coding practice in term of security,” he further tweeted.

On Friday, both the Unique Identification Authority of India (UIDAI) as well as the telecom operators washed their hand of the issue.

While the telecom industry denied any role in the strange incident, the UIDAI said that he strange incident, the UIDAI said that some vested interests were trying to create “unwarranted confusion” in the public and clarified that it had not asked any manufacturer or telecom service provider to provide any such facility.

Twitter was abuzz with the new development after a huge uproar due to Telecom Regulatory Authority of India (TRAI) Chairman R.S. Sharma’s open Aadhaar challenge to critics and hackers.

Ethical hackers exposed at least 14 personal details of the TRAI Chairman, including mobile numbers, home address, date of birth, PAN number and voter ID among others. (IANS)

Also Read: Why India Is Still Nowhere Near Securing Its Citizens’ Data?