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The online gambling or real-money gaming sector in India has undergone a recent boom. What is it about the betting industry that has seen steady growth, even as the Indian economy is being ravaged by the side effects of the pandemic?
Gambling has long been a part of Indian culture, whether over small wagers card games in family gatherings, or larger bets placed on India’s favorite sport, cricket. Thus, it is hardly surprising that India is one of the fastest-growing markets for online gaming and sports betting.
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But what are some of the factors that have contributed to the rise of online betting in India?
Easier availability of cheaper and more efficient technology.
One of the biggest reasons behind the rise of the online betting industry to the top is the easy availability of cheaper and more efficient technology. With more and more mid to low-tier smartphones flooding the Indian market, every citizen has access to the internet and betting apps.
The more people become dependent on the smartphone for all their needs, the more they get exposed to apps that are meant for pure entertainment. And the lure to make some extra money while playing a simple casino game on your phone seems like an irresistible offer indeed.
Throwaway data pack prices.
We have Ambani to thank for the dirt-cheap data packs that we can now buy to make content consumption easier than ever. Gone are the days where we would make a 1GB data pack last half a month.
With most telcos now offering cheap data packs with 1GB or 2GB to spend per day, people are enabled to use the internet to their hearts’ content. And before long, the many real-money gaming apps flooding the market are bound to attract users.
Digital payments such as UPI.
How would digital payments help people bet online? The answer is simple – the more easily you can spend online, the more you actually do!
Digital payment apps that run on the UPI infrastructure – Paytm, Google Pay, PhonePe, BHIM, Samsung Pay, Amazon Pay – have all made it possible for people to easily deposit money on betting sites or apps and enjoy wagering at any time.
Since more and more real-money gaming apps now accept these RBI-approved payment methods, Indians are more inclined to quickly deposit some spare cash and begin trying their luck at the games!
The lockdown breeds boredom.
This may seem like a frivolous reason behind the rise of online betting in India, but it is one that cannot be ignored. 2020 saw an incredible increase in the number of players that were betting online. And that trend has continued into 2021.
And there is a simple explanation for the same – the lockdown having cut down entertainment options for the general public, people already have very few choices. And real-money gaming or online betting happens to be one of those fun activities that you can engage in, without ever having to interact with another person, making it the perfect sport for a pandemic.
(Disclaimer: The article is sponsored and hence promotes some commercial links.)
The US researchers have discovered a class of immune cells that plays a role in miscarriage, which affects about a quarter of pregnancies.
Researchers at the University of California-San Francisco found that the recently discovered subset of cells known as extrathymic Aire-expressing cells in the immune system may prevent the mother's immune system from attacking the placenta and fetus.
The researchers showed that pregnant mice who did not have this subset of cells were twice as likely to miscarry, and in many of these pregnancies fetal growth was severely restricted.
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"When you're pregnant, the immune system is seeing the placenta for the first time in decades -- not since the mother made a placenta when she herself was a fetus," said Eva Gillis-Buck, from UCSF.
"Our research suggests that this subset of immune cells is carrying out a sort of 'secondary education' -- sometimes many years after the better-known population of the educator cells have carried out the primary education in the thymus -- teaching T cells not to attack the fetus, the placenta and other tissues involved in pregnancy," she added. The findings are published in the journal Science Immunology.
The immune system has to be educated not to attack one's own tissues and organs to prevent autoimmune disease. But pregnancy presents a unique challenge since the fetus expresses proteins found in the placenta as well as proteins whose genetics are distinct from the mother.
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"It was a conceptual leap to link Aire-expressing cells, which are critical for preventing autoimmune disease, to pregnancy," said Tippi Mackenzie, Professor of Surgery at UCSF's Center for Maternal Foetal Precision Medicine.
In the thymus, Aire-expressing cells begin interacting with other immune cells very early in life to teach them what not to attack. The thymus begins to shrink and is nearly gone by adulthood, by which time most immune cells have been educated. But as the thymus shrinks, the population of eTACs in lymph nodes and the spleen expands, the researchers explained.
The study suggests a healthy pregnancy may depend on having these cells around, they added. (IANS/KB)
The tiny emojis being shared on billions of devices worldwide can play a major role in digital communication, with most people saying that emoji compels them to feel more empathy towards others, according to an Adobe report.
Adobe's global emoji study found that emoji even helps people overcome language barriers and form connections that would otherwise be difficult to do.
"We were surprised and delighted by the discoveries made in the survey, most notably how enthusiastic respondents were for emoji as a means to express themselves," the company said in a statement.
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Emojis sometimes get criticized for being overly saccharine, but this sweetness is key when it comes to diffusing some of the heaviness of online communication.
"Many of the emoji are focused on positive emotions, so it's easy to insert them into our conversations and lighten the mood," the Adobe study said.
It's not surprising that over half of those surveyed feel more comfortable using emojis than talking on the phone or in person.
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This applies to less intense situations too. Dating, for example, can be tricky — especially when it's online or via digital apps, as it often is now.
The study also found that emoji even helps people overcome language barriers and form connections that would otherwise be difficult to do.
In celebration of World Emoji Day on Saturday, Adobe's '2021 Global Emoji Trend Report' surveyed 7,000 people in the US, the UK, Germany, France, Japan, Australia, and South Korea. (IANS/KB)
Following the grand Richard Branson show where he carried Andhra Pradesh-born Sirisha Bandla and fellow space travelers on his shoulders after successfully flying to the edge of space, it is time for Amazon Founder Jeff Bezos to applaud Sanjal Gavande, one of the key engineers who designed the New Shephard rocket set to take Bezos and the crew to space on July 20.
Billionaire Bezos is set to fly to the edge of space aboard what is touted as the world's first unpiloted suborbital flight. Born in Kalyan, Maharashtra, Gavande is a systems engineer at Blue Origin who always dreamt of designing aerospace rockets.
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After completing Bachelor's in mechanical engineering from the University of Mumbai, she flew to the US in 2011 to pursue a Master's in mechanical engineering from the Michigan Technological University. She also applied for an engineering job at the US space agency NASA but finally landed her dream job at Blue Origin
Sirisha flew to the US in 2011 to pursue a Master's in mechanical engineering from the Michigan Technological University.IANS
Bezos, his brother Mark, aviation pioneer Mary Wallace 'Wally' Funk, and other passengers are set to liftoff from west Texas and travel just beyond the edge of space on July 20. Blue Origin announced this week that Oliver Daemen, an 18-year-old high school graduate from the Netherlands, would join the crew.
Oliver is the son of millionaire Joe Daemen, Founder, and CEO of the Dutch investment company Somerset Capital Partners. Blue Origin, however, did not reveal how much Daemen paid for his son's trip to space. Bezos chose July 20 as the launch date to honor the 52nd anniversary of the Apollo 11 moon landing.
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The launch site for Blue Origin's first human flight will be in a remote location north of Van Horn, Texas, from where the firm had launched New Shepard for previous flights. Blue Origin has received final approval from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to carry humans on the New Shepard rocket into space.
On July 12, Bandla touched the edge of space with three others, including Virgin Galactic's billionaire CEO Richard Branson. Bandla vaulted into space onboard VSS Unity 22. After the successful spaceflight, Branson carried the Indian-American on his shoulders while celebrating their flight to space, at Spaceport America in New Mexico. (IANS/KB)