Feeling happy can be particularly challenging, especially in this era of Covid-19. But a new study from the University of Bristol indicates that you can achieve this state of contentment if you take the trouble to study it like any other academic subject. And it seems to be working. This “science of happiness” course is reported to have been beneficial to the students’ mental health. How can a person be happy? While the question has taken on particular significance since the start of the pandemic, it has been a focus for professors at the University of Bristol since 2018. At the time, the university launched a course dedicated to the “science of happiness” in response to a worrying increase in mental health problems among British students. This module, inspired by a course given at US university Yale, has two parts – one theoretical, the other practical. Students attend classes on the psychology and neuroscience of happiness, but they are also asked to perform tasks that might ... » Learn More about What if happiness could be learned at university?
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PETALING JAYA: Malaysia’s very own Prof Datuk Dr Adeeba Kamarulzaman has been appointed as a member of the World Health Organisation (WHO) Science Council. The WHO Science Council is a high-level Scientific Advisory Group that will act as the voice of scientific leadership and will advise on advances in science and technology that could directly impact global health, Universiti Malaya (UM) said in a Facebook post congratulating her. The former UM medical faculty dean and Professor of Infectious Diseases is also the International AIDS Society president-elect and Malaysian AIDS Foundation chairman. She also heads the UM Urological Cancer Trust Fund, which is spearheading the campaign that kicks off the Men’s Health Awareness Month to be held every November from 2020 until 2024. ... » Learn More about Dr Adeeba Kamarulzaman appointed WHO Science Council member
PETALING JAYA: The government should focus on achieving herd immunity among the Malaysian population before it decides on procuring any booster shots for Covid-19 innoculation plan, say health experts. Prof Dr Moy Foong Ming, of Universiti Malaya’s Department of Social and Preventive Medicine, said seeing that there was no evidence yet on how long the immunity from the two-dose regimen lasts, studies must be conducted to ascertain the status of antibody concentration after the double dose of the Covid-19 vaccine. “The third dose may play a crucial role in future. But for now, there is not enough data to support this claim. “Therefore, the government should focus on getting 80% of the population vaccinated and achieving herd immunity in order for Covid-19 transmissions to come to a very low level, ” she explained. International Islamic University Malaysia’s Assistant Prof Dr Mohammad Farhan Rusli agreed with the priority on the mandatory two shots for as many Malaysians as ... » Learn More about Focus on herd immunity first, say experts
Kai Sotto’s G League stint won’t keep him from representing the country in February. —PHOTO FROMKAI SOTTO’S INSTAGRAM The good news: Kai Sotto has committed to play for Gilas Pilipinas in its coming Fiba Asia window late next month. Another piece of a great development: Most Philippine Basketball Association (PBA) players on the Samahang Basketbol ng Pilipinas’ (SBP) wish list have expressed willingness to join the pool in the bubble. Here’s the sad part: Travel restrictions by so many countries in the world could effectively shelve the tournament all together even as the leadership of SBP is scrambling double time to make the Feb. 18 to 22 meet that also includes South Korea and Indonesia happen. “It’s a two-way concern,” SBP president Al Panlilio told the Inquirer over the phone on Tuesday, referring to the travel ban imposed on certain countries because of the coronavirus pandemic. “Other countries are wary, too. Those are the parameters we are all trying to address. ... » Learn More about Kai Sotto commits to Gilas for February window, will arrive this week
Tristan Tamayo/INQUIRER.net University of the East ended University of the Philippines’ campaign with an 80-67 rout in the UAAP Season 79 seniors’ basketball tournament Sunday at Smart Araneta Coliseum. The Fighting Maroons, who put up a fight for a Final Four spot late in the second round, fizzled out as they wrapped up their season with a 5-9 record while the Red Warriors improved to 3-10. UE went berserk midway through the game with a 17-2 run throughout the second and third quarters as Alvin Pasaol capped it off with a fastbreak layup to put the boards at 48-28 at the 8:14 mark of the penultimate period. Red Warriors head coach Derrick Pumaren said they wanted to end their Season 79 campaign in respectable fashion and he was satisfied with how his team played despite their poor record. “We really played to our full potential today, and even though UP made a run late we kept our poise,” said Pumaren whose team has the chance to take the seventh spot if they win ... » Learn More about UE routs UP; Maroons end Season 79 campaign
Some of the SEA Games medalist, who are also members of the Philippine Army, assisting locally stranded individuals staying at the Army Wellness Center. PH ARMY PHOTO MANILA, Philippines—After bringing pride for the Philippines in the 2019 Southeast Asian Games, these athletes continued to serve their country during the coronavirus pandemic. Some of the country’s gold medalists are now serving as the frontliners during the COVID-19 crisis as enlisted personnel of the Philippine Army, recently assisting locally stranded individuals (LSI) from the nearby Ninoy Aquino International Airport. Villamor Cunamay (arnis), John Jeffrey Morcillos (sepak takraw), Noel Norada (wrestling) and Mark Anthony Alcoseba (lawn tennis) are assigned at the Special Service Center of the Philippine Army, where the Wellness Center is located. The Army last week turned the gymnasium into temporary accommodation for stranded passengers, who are awaiting their flights back home amid limited number of ... » Learn More about SEA Games medalists serve as PH Army frontliners, assist stranded individuals
MANILA, Philippines — The government may suspend the deployment of Filipino workers to Middle Eastern countries over the kafala system that has been blamed for abuses against foreign workers, including Filipinos, in Arab countries. “It’s not far-fetched that if they won’t heed the call of our President, I may be ordered to suspend the deployment of OFWs (overseas Filipino workers) to countries that don’t want to abolish the kafala system,” Labor Secretary Silvestre Bello III said on Wednesday. Bello made the remark a day after President Rodrigo Duterte denounced the visa sponsorship system prevalent in the entire Middle East as “unjust and exploitative” and called for its complete abolition. “They know that the President made the call for the protection of our [workers]. If they won’t heed [his call], our direction is clear and that is to suspend or at least slow down the deployment of our OFWs” to those countries, he added. The kafala system requires all foreign workers to ... » Learn More about Gov’t may stop Filipino workers going to Middle East over ‘kafala’
Health officials arrive at Lan Dham Namsuk meditation centre in Muang district, Chiang Mai, on Thursday. Covid-19 tests for 27 people there have returned positive, with more results pending. (Photo: Panumet Tanraksa) CHIANG MAI: An additional 237 Covid-19 cases were reported in Chiang Mai on Thursday, with at least 27 at a Buddhist meditation centre in Muang district. The Chiang Mai communicable diseases control panel and the provincial public health office on Thursday confirmed the 237 infections, up from 99 on Wednesday. This raised total infections in this northern province to 2,819. Officials said 222 infected patients had already recovered and 2,597 remained in hospitals. A building at San Kamphaeng Hospital is being used as a field hospital, with 40 beds, officials said. There were 353 infected patients accommodated at Chiang Mai University’s dormitory 5, which was being used as another field hospital - 172 males and 181 females. Three had already recovered and been ... » Learn More about Infections rise in Chiang Mai, some at meditation centre
“Mario Kart.” Image: Nintendo via ETX Daily Up An American researcher and “Mario Kart” enthusiast suggests that governments should draw inspiration from the famous video game for sustainable development policies that encourage environmentally friendly agriculture. No, that’s not a misprint. From “Mario Kart.” Racing along on the Luigi Circuit, you come to a dangerous bend where you skid on a banana skin dropped by one of your rivals, but you manage to land on your wheels and even win a Fire Flower. Having read these couple of lines, experienced gamers will no doubt recognize the familiar world of “Mario Kart.” The long-standing and highly successful video game series developed in the 1990s has recently been the subject of a very serious study published in Nature Sustainability. The study suggests that governments should draw inspiration from “Mario Kart” to establish sustainable development policies that support poor farming communities, notably in Asia and Africa. But how ... » Learn More about Could governments draw inspiration from ‘Mario Kart’ to develop sustainable policies?
The ‘Minecraft Earth’ game launched worldwide at the end of 2019. Image: Xbox Game Studios/Mojang via AFP Relaxnews. It’s the end of the line for “Minecraft Earth.” The augmented reality game of Microsoft-owned Mojang Studios will be shut down for good on June 30. The Minecraft website cited the current global situation as the reason for its downfall. The COVID-19 pandemic and stay-at-home mandates have led to the demise of the game, which is played outdoors, less than two years after it launched. “Minecraft Earth was designed around free movement and collaborative play — two things that have become near impossible in the current global situation,” read the statement announcing the end of the augmented reality game on Jan. 5. Players have until June 30 to enjoy the game, based on the “Minecraft” universe, before it is wiped from its servers and pulled from download sites. In the meantime, game developer Mojang nevertheless released a final update, Jan. 5, “to make your time ... » Learn More about COVID-19 spells curtains for ‘Minecraft Earth’