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World’s biggest book fair studies classroom of future

The digital world is knocking at the classroom door, but it is not simply a matter of shifting from paper to screen, educational experts and interactive content producers warn. While portable devices such as the smartphone and tablet computer have revolutionised daily life for millions of people by enabling access…

Military prepares new aggressive rules to fight cyber war: Panetta

The United States faces a growing threat of a “cyber-Pearl Harbor” and has drafted new rules for the military that would enable it to move aggressively against digital attacks, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta said. The amended rules of engagement underline the need to defend Defense Department computer networks, “but also…

China’s Nobel in literature winner defends prize from dissidents calling him a ‘communist stooge’ — and Mao

Chinese author Mo Yan on Friday defended his Nobel prize from dissidents who accused him of being a communist stooge, and expressed hope for the early release of jailed fellow laureate Liu Xiaobo. Speaking after his Nobel literature prize sparked an outpouring of praise from the government, and sharp condemnation…

Affleck film ‘Argo’ recounts Hollywood role in Iran crisis

AFP - Actor-director Ben Affleck’s latest movie tells the incredible story of Hollywood’s role in an attempt to get a group of US diplomats out of Iran during the 1979 hostage crisis. “Argo,” Affleck’s third film behind the camera, is set against the backdrop of the Iranian revolution and the international…

Indian state drops cartoonist’s sedition charge

AFP - Indian prosecutors dropped sedition charges Friday against a cartoonist whose arrest over his anti-corruption drawings outraged freedom of speech campaigners, his lawyer said. Aseem Trivedi, whose online cartoons include the national parliament depicted as a huge toilet bowl, was detained in Mumbai early last month before being released four…

Botswana court gives women inheritance rights

AFP - In a landmark ruling Botswana’s High Court on Friday gave women inheritance rights for the first time, up-ending a male-dominated system that had prevailed in the thriving African nation. Announcing the ruling, Justice Key Dingake said, “It seems to me that the time has now arisen for the justices…

‘Voodoo lily’ stinks up New Zealand botanic garden

AFP - A “grotesque” plant that mimics the smell of rotting flesh to attract flies has gone on display in Wellington’s Botanic Gardens. The dracunculus vulgaris, commonly known as the voodoo lily, began flowering on Thursday and will emit a strong stench of putrid meat for about a week, botanic gardens…

U.S. warns meningitis cases could rise

AFP - US authorities have managed to contact most of the thousands of people exposed to the tainted drug blamed for a meningitis outbreak that has killed 14, but warned the number of infections could rise. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said it had contacted 12,000 of the nearly…

Pakistan child activist facing ‘critical’ 24-36 hours

AFP - The next 36 to 48 hours will be critical for a Pakistani schoolgirl shot in the head by the Taliban, the military said Friday, calling on the nation to pray for her recovery. The shooting of 14-year-old Malala Yousafzai who campaigned for the right to an education has been…

Obama, Romney asked to debate on climate change

MIAMI — Experts appealed Thursday to President Barack Obama and Mitt Romney to address climate change when they debate in Florida, saying the coastal state is already hit by rising water levels. More than 120 Floridians who either serve on official bodies on sea level or hold advanced degrees on…

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