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The need for daily validation from others gets amplified in this digitally-altered world which is filled with filter-loaded images of unrealistically and seemingly perfect women, says author Deepa A. Agarwal, whose new book 'The Hangover of Choices' addresses disassociation with one's sexuality and the constant need for external validation.
The entrepreneur-author says: "The book is my humble attempt to bring forth the idea of inner life and the criticality of taking self-action. It's an invitation for the readers to get an honest look at themselves, before being assailed by the hangover of their own choices. Through this book, I aim to highlight the importance of strengthening one's inner self and build a stronger self-identity."
The book 'The Hangover of Choices' has been packaged in fiction, and highlights concepts and the futility of the need for external validation, the need to stand out in a crowd, fears, and other related aspects where one seems to feel that they have no control over their own lives.
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Asked about her prompt to write the book, the author shares: "The trigger to write The Hangover of Choices came from two points-- The first being my work in the mental health and gender space. The second being my philosophical studies and journey. I have observed common narratives and themes among people, during workshops or setting up mental health or DEI practices: People share regrets they have in life, stemming from certain decisions and choices they may have made in the past. The other narrative is of dissonance that I sense among women -- the need to look and be perfect, a disowning of one's sexuality, desire for validation from loved ones, a negative body image -- are all very common themes," she tells IANSlife.
People share regrets they have in life, stemming from certain decisions and choices they may have made in the past. Pixabay
"The second trigger comes from my philosophical journey and studies of Buddhism. If there is one thing that I have understood, it is that to understand our actions and behaviors, we must step out from where we are. We need to take an honest look at ourselves if we are to live a really meaningful life. I wanted to offer this understanding of stepping out of the self and re-evaluating one's worldview and actions. And that we are individually far more in control of our lives than we would like to believe," Deepa adds.
Deepa is the recipient of the "Exceptional Woman of Excellence" award by the Women Economic Forum and an expert panel member with the Center for Global Inclusion. What are some of the stories that the book tells?
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"Through the character of Nidhi Verma, the stories that I have shared are around the themes of female sexuality, body image, need for external validation, and mental health. In that sense, the book is the life journey and story of the protagonist. The stories come in the form of experiences -- a sudden encounter with an old flame, a reunion with school friends, a boss who forces therapy, and counseling sessions with a psychologist. The specific stories shared are fictional in themselves. However, they have been inspired by the narratives and conversations that I have with people from many walks of life.
"Our protagonist, Nidhi Verma is on her deathbed and recollecting her experiences. However, there is a twist. She simultaneously becomes the actor and the viewer. It's this interplay of being the actor and the viewer at the same time, that I have used as the backbone to further the narrative and the great need for self-action as well as finding inner stability," explains Deepa.
The book which talks about reconnecting with one's mind also has 'body acceptance' as a key theme. (IANS/KB)
Microsoft has disrupted the activities of a China-based hacking group, gaining control of the malicious websites the group used to attack organisations in the US and 28 other countries around the world.
The Microsoft Digital Crimes Unit (DCU) said in a statement that a federal court in Virginia granted its request to seize websites of the hacking group called 'Nickel', enabling the company to cut off Nickel's access to its victims and prevent the websites from being used to execute attacks.
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"We believe these attacks were largely being used for intelligence gathering from government agencies, think tanks and human rights organisations," said Tom Burt, Corporate Vice President, Customer Security and Trust at Microsoft.
Obtaining control of the malicious websites and redirecting traffic from those sites to Microsoft's secure servers will help the company protect existing and future victims while learning more about Nickel's activities.
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"Our disruption will not prevent Nickel from continuing other hacking activities, but we do believe we have removed a key piece of the infrastructure the group has been relying on for this latest wave of attacks," Burt said late on Monday.
To date, in 24 lawsuits - five against nation-state actors -- Microsoft has taken down more than 10,000 malicious websites used by cybercriminals and nearly 600 sites used by nation-state actors.
"We have also successfully blocked the registration of 600,000 sites to get ahead of criminal actors that planned to use them maliciously in the future," the tech giant informed.
"We believe these attacks were largely being used for intelligence gathering from government agencies, think tanks and human rights organisations."Unsplash
In some observed activity, Nickel malware used exploits targeting unpatched on-premises Exchange Server and SharePoint systems.
"However, we have not observed any new vulnerabilities in Microsoft products as part of these attacks. Microsoft has created unique signatures to detect and protect from known Nickel activity through our security products, like Microsoft 365 Defender," the company noted.
Nickel has targeted organisations in both the private and public sectors, including diplomatic organisations and ministries of foreign affairs in North America, Central America, South America, the Caribbean, Europe and Africa. (IANS/SP)
(Keywords : hacking, China, Microsoft, website, victim, intelligence, attack, malicious, traffic, server, company, disruption, lawsuits, cybercriminals, vulnerability.)
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Chip manufacturer MediaTek on Monday announced that it is focused on making 2022 a year aimed at rapid growth, business success, substantial expansion in Research and Development capabilities.
MediaTek's plans to boost technology democratisation and enable access to disruptive connectivity with its range of mainstream to flagship 5G chips.
"We at MediaTek are focused on making 2022 a year aimed at rapid growth, business success, and substantial expansion in our R&D capabilities. For 2022, we are focused on further strengthening our presence in India, offering incredible experiences to customers, and supporting the country's technology initiatives with our expertise and collaboration with leading OEMs," Anku Jain, Managing Director, MediaTek India said in a statement.
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In the flagship segment, MediaTek recently announced the Dimensity 9000 chip, which is a milestone of innovation and a rise to the incredible, built-to-power flagship 5G smartphones in the world, the company claims.
MediaTek Dimensity 9000 features a single Cortex-X2 performance core clocked at 3.05GHz, three Cortex-A710 cores at 2.85GHz and four Cortex-A510 efficiency cores at 1.8GHz.
It packs a 10-core Arm Mali-G710 that takes care of graphics processing, the report said.
The chipset also comes packed with MediaTek's fifth-generation APU with six total cores for AI processing.Unsplash
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The chipset also comes packed with MediaTek's fifth-generation APU with six total cores for AI processing.
The chipset can handle screens with up to a 180Hz refresh rate at Full HD+ resolutions. It is also the first chipset to have an 18-bit image signal processor, offering the ability to capture 4K HDR video using up to three cameras at the same time, or still photos using up to a massive 320MP sensor. (IANS/PR)
(Keywords: 5G, smartphones, Mediatek)
If the US loses Chinese companies, Wall Street will gradually alienate itself from the world's most prosperous market and the US will no longer be the true global financial centre, Chinese state media claimed.
Didi Chuxing, the Chinese ride-hailing giant, announced on Friday that the company is starting the work of delisting from the New York Stock Exchange (NYSE) and initiating preparations for listing in Hong Kong.
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One day before Didi made the statement, the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) issued a mandate requiring foreign companies listed in the US to provide audits for inspection. Otherwise, they could be delisted from NYSE and Nasdaq in three years.
"The new SEC regulation clearly targets Chinese companies listed in the US. Analysts believe that it could lead to more than 200 companies being kicked off US exchanges," Global Times reported.
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Didi is the first Chinese company, which announced that it would delist from the NYSE after the SEC issued its new regulation. The company got listed in the US in June without the approval of Chinese regulatory authorities, sparking concerns that the information of hundreds of millions of Chinese users would be leaked to endanger China's national security. More than 20 apps linked to the company were subsequently removed from mobile stores. The SEC's new regulation has compressed Didi's space for financing in the US from the other direction, the report said.
It will become more difficult for Chinese digital technology and application companies to get listed in the US in the future.Unsplash
There have already been voices in the US demanding most of the "China concept stocks" be removed from the US. Scrutiny of "China concept stocks" is expected to get stricter. The US provides various excuses such as "financial security" and "national security" for such scrutiny, the report said.
It will become more difficult for Chinese digital technology and application companies to get listed in the US in the future. This will cause losses to both sides. But the tendency shows that China has greater initiative to adjust and adapt to new conditions, the report said.
Global Times said Chinese companies have other alternatives, and if they go back to China, they will greatly enhance the attractiveness of the mainland and Hong Kong capital markets, creating the possibility of gradually changing the global financial landscape. (IANS/SP)
(Keywords : Wall street, China, stocks, companies, businesses, losses, regulations, prosperous, technology, authorities, delisting.)
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