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What is more Important than Sex, Chocolate or Alcohol? Wi-Fi : Survey

Nearly 75 percent of respondents said that Wi-Fi has improved their quality of life

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A person using Wi-Fi, Pixabay
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London, Nov 20, 2016: The craze for wireless internet connection has gone up so much that almost half of the people now crave for Wi-Fi on the go even more than chocolate, alcohol and, yes, sex, show results of a new survey.

The ever-increasing influence of Wi-Fi on our daily lives was revealed in a recent survey of more than 1,700 people conducted by iPass, a leading provider of global mobile connectivity

The results showed that while 40 per cent of respondents chose Wi-Fi as their number one daily essential, 37 per cent chose sex, 14 per cent preferred chocolate and only nine per cent prioritised alcohol.

“We all want Wi-Fi first, because of faster speeds, lower prices and the better user experience it affords,” said Patricia Hume, Chief Commercial Officer of iPass.

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Nearly 75 per cent of respondents said that Wi-Fi has improved their quality of life, according to “The iPass Mobile Professional Report 2016”.

For mobile professionals who do not want to be stung by data bills or exorbitant roaming charges, Wi-Fi has also become a travel essential, influencing hotel, airport and other travel choices.

The survey showed that 72 per cent of respondents have chosen a hotel based on the Wi-Fi experience, with 21 per cent saying they do so all the time. It also showed that 72 percent respondents use free Wi-Fi at airports if it is available.

“Mobile professionals, in particular, expect to remain connected at all times, whether at home, travelling between client meetings, at their hotel or even inflight,” Hume added.

Sixty per cent of the respondents for the survey came from North America, and 40 per cent were from European countries.

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“The Wi-Fi experience is increasingly affecting mobile professionals’ travel choices, even at 30,000 feet, with more than a third of respondents having selected their airline based on its Wi-Fi connectivity offerings,” Hume pointed out.

“Long gone are the days when Wi-Fi was only a ‘nice-to-have’ at airports and inflight. Mobile professionals are no longer content to sit and wait for their flights. Instead, they want to remain productive or simply unwind during this valuable time,” Hume said.(IANS)

 

 

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Chocolate Ingredient Cacao Dates Back To 5,400 yrs Ago

A growing interest in cacao flavors, indicates a return to a time when chocolate wasn't just an ingredient buried in a candy bar.

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A worker holds dried cacao seeds at a plantation in Cano Rico, Venezuela. VOA

New research strengthens the case that people used the chocolate ingredient cacao in South America 5,400 years ago, underscoring the seed’s radical transformation into today’s Twix bars and M&M candies.

Tests indicate traces of cacao on artifacts from an archaeological site in Ecuador, according to a study published Monday. That’s about 1,500 years older than cacao’s known domestication in Central America.

“It’s the earliest site now with domesticated cacao,” said Cameron McNeil of Lehman College in New York, who was not involved in the research.

The ancient South American civilization likely didn’t use cacao to make chocolate since there’s no established history of indigenous populations in the region using it that way, researchers led by the University of British Columbia in Canada said.

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-A cacao pod hangs from a tree at the Agropampatar chocolate farm co-op in El Clavo, Venezuela. VOA

But the tests indicate the civilization used the cacao seed, not just the fruity pulp. The seeds are the part of the cacao pod used to make chocolate.

Indigenous populations in the upper Amazon region today use cacao for fermented drinks and juices, and it’s probably how it was used thousands of years ago as well, researchers said.

Scientists mostly agree that cacao was first domesticated in South America instead of Central America as previously believed. The study in Nature Ecology & Evolution provides fresh evidence.

Three types of tests were conducted using artifacts from the Santa Ana-La Florida site in Ecuador. One tested for the presence of theobromine, a key compound in cacao; another tested for preserved particles that help archeologists identify ancient plant use; a third used DNA testing to identify cacao.

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A light almond cream candy carries the initials for Russell Stover Candies in Kansas City, Kansas. VOA

Residue from one ceramic artifact estimated to be 5,310 to 5,440 years old tested positive for cacao by all three methods. Others tested positive for cacao traces as well, but were not as old.

How cacao’s use spread between South America and Central America is not clear. But by the time Spanish explorers arrived in Central America in the late 1400s, they found people were using it to make hot and cold chocolate drinks with spices, often with a foamy top.

“For most of the modern period, it was a beverage,” said Marcy Norton, a historian at the University of Pennsylvania and author of “Sacred Gifts, Profane Pleasures: A History of Tobacco and Chocolate in the Atlantic World.”

The chocolate drinks in Central America often contained maize and differ from the hot chocolate sold in the U.S. They did not contain milk, Norton said, and when they were sweetened, it was with honey.

 

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A worker holds cocoa beans at SAF CACAO, a export firm in San-Pedro, Ivory Coast, Jan. 29, 2016. VOA

By the 1580s, cacao was being regularly imported into Spain and spread to other European countries with milk being added along the way. It wasn’t until the 1800s that manufacturing advances in the Netherlands transformed chocolate into a solid product, Norton said.

Michael Laiskonis, who teaches chocolate classes the Institute of Culinary Education, said he’s seeing a growing interest in cacao flavors, indicating a return to a time when chocolate wasn’t just an ingredient buried in a candy bar.

Also Read: Consuming Cacao May Improve Vitamin D Intake, Says Study

He said he tries to incorporate chocolate’s past into his classes, including a 1644 recipe that combines Mayan and Aztec versions of drinks with European influences.

“It’s something that’s always been transforming,” he said. (VOA)