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来源:光明分享    发布时间:2018年04月20日 07:19:32    编辑:admin         

A debate team from Wenzao Ursuline College of Languages in the southern port city of Kaohsiung won the ;English as a foreign language; (EFL) category of the Northeast Asian Open 2008 Debating Championship earlier this month.文藻外语学院位于台湾省南部港都高雄市,学院辩论队在2008年东北亚英语辩论公开赛上夺冠。Executives of the college introduced the members of the debate team at a news conference held on the campus of Wenzao.文藻学院举行了新闻发布会,会上学院高管介绍了辩论队的成员。The debate team consisted of three students: Yen Tzu-chien, a senior in the Department of Foreign Language Instruction; Fang Chia-hsuan, a junior in the Department of Translation and Interpretation; and Pan Chun-ting, a fifth-year student in the Department of French in the junior college division.队伍包括三名学生:文藻外语学院英文学系所一年级学生陈子珺,文藻外语学院翻译学系二年级学生萧琬融,以及文藻外语学院法文学系五年级学生潘俊廷。They defeated more than 100 debaters from other countries and territories, including Japan, South Korea, and Hong Kong, to capture the championship in the EFL category of the competition, held at Kyoto Seika University.他们打败了来自其他国家地区的100多名辩手,这些国家包括日本,韩国,香港。这次辩论赛在京都精华大学举行,文藻学院辩手获得英语辩论赛冠军。In the final competition, the Wenzao team defeated the team from Seikei University in Tokyo, with a 3-0 decision by the judges.在决赛上,文藻辩论队以3比0的成绩打败来自京都精华大学的辩论队。In addition to winning the overall championship, team member Yen, together with a contestant from Japan and another contestant from South Korea, placed first among the top 10 speakers in the EFL category.除了赢得总冠军之外,文藻辩论队成员陈子珺与来自日本和韩国的其他两名辩手被评为十佳英语辩手。The Wenzao Debate Societys leader, Hsiao Yi-chiao-a third-year student in the five-year junior college-was invited to serve as a judge for the competition.文藻辩论社的队长-一名5年制专科学院的三年级学生被邀请作为辩论赛的评委。201205/184810。

Billionaires Bill Gates and Warren Buffett are hoping Chinas newly wealthy will embrace philanthropy.亿万富翁比尔·盖茨和沃伦·巴菲特希望中国财富新贵们持慈善事业。The men hosted a dinner for over 50 of Chinas business elite and entrepreneurs on Wednesday to discuss ideas on how to share their wealth. China was home to the fastest growing number of high net worth individuals but has little tradition in charity.他们于星期三晚设宴邀请50余位中国商界精英和企业家,来探讨如何分享财富。中国是高净值个人人数不断以最快的速度增长的国家,但是却没有做慈善事业的传统。Microsoft founder Gates put this down to wealth being a relatively recent phenomenon.“The main difference I think is that because the wealth here is so new, a lot of these non-profit groups have not been developed in a notion of what is the role of government versus philanthropy thats still being developed and, you know, its great to see, like many things in China, its happening faster than it happened in most other places.”Many rich Chinese are also reluctant to discuss their wealth in public, fearful of unwanted attention from the authorities or resentment from millions of have-nots.微软创始人盖茨把财富用作慈善事业,是近期的风气。“我认为主要区别在于,财富对于大多数中国人而言是陌生的,许多非盈利机构还没得以发展。在这个民族,政府对慈善事业的影响在不断改善。我们很高兴得看到,相比其它大多数地方许多事物在中国发展得更快。”许多中国富人不愿意公开讨论自己的财富,害怕招来政府的特别关注和上百万穷人的仇富心态。Buffett says the habit of giving is still being formed, but more and more of China’s newly wealthy are starting to assess their options.“Reasonbly widesp great wealth is a much newer phenomenon. And the habits of philanthropy probably are being formed here whereas they are probably settled in more if you go to Europe where people of the dynasties have passed on wealth for generation after generation. So that the ideas, the charitable inclinations or the more ancient norms in Europe are much more likely to be more solidified and harder to change than a new sociey where people are looking at wealth as they dont have their leading donor and Im thinking well put a clue about this.”Private philanthropy became obsolete after the 1949 revolution, but the country’s wealth gap widened after it embaced capitalist reforms in the 1970s. Recent natural disasters have also stoked patriotic sentiment and rekindled an interest in charity.巴菲特说赠与是种习惯,可以渐渐养成。然而越来越多的中国财富新贵们开始评估他们的选择。“巨额财富广泛分布是一种合理的社会新现象。捐赠的习惯可能会在这儿形成,然而如果去欧洲,财富则可能会越积越多,因为欧洲的富人选择一代代继承财富。欧洲人的这种观念,这种慈善倾向以及其古老的行事准则很有可能进一步固化,从而比新型国家更难以改变。因为新型社会没有主要捐赠代表,没有做慈善的经验可循,我们可以把这看作是线索。”自1949年改革以来,私人捐赠更是凤毛麟角,但是20世纪70年代实行资本市场改革以后,中国贫富差距拉大。而且近年来的自然灾害也振奋了人们的爱国情绪,慈善的兴趣被重新点燃了。Ahno Gay, Reuters.Ahno Gay,路透社。201205/183239。

THE difference between Barack Obama, leader and Barack Obama, campaigner is in the sleeves. When Mr Obama speaks as the president—sober, calm, head of a nation—he tends to encase them in a suit jacket. When he speaks as a candidate—fiery, enthusiastic, figurehead of a party—he loses the jacket and rolls up his shirtsleeves. One might expect him to deliver a speech on economic policy besuited. But for his barnburner on April 10th, during which he urged Congress to pass the Buffett rule, it was bare forearms start to finish.总统奥巴马与竞选人奥巴马这两个头衔的区别就在于衬衫袖的不同。当奥巴马作为国家元首时,他身着单件西装,集沉着冷静于一身。而当他作为党派领袖以候选人的身份讲话时,他四射——此时他就褪去西装并挽起衬衫袖子。别人还以为他会西装笔挺地进行经济政策的演说,然而他在4月10日发表的激动人心的演说中敦促国会通过“巴菲特规则”时,自始至终都是挽着袖子,裸露着前臂。The Buffett rule is named after Warren Buffett, who believes it is unfair that his secretary, who makes far less than he does, pays tax at a higher marginal rate. One version, the Paying a Fair Share Act of 2012, is scheduled by Senate Democrats for a procedural vote on April 16th—as it happens, a day before federal income-tax returns must be filed. The rule aims to ensure that people earning more than m a year pay tax at an effective rate of 30%.巴菲特规则是以涡沃伦·巴菲特命名的。作为亿万富翁的巴菲特,认为自己缴税的税率还不如手下的秘书多,尽管秘书比他挣得少多了(巴菲特缴税的税率约为15%,而其秘书缴纳的税率则为30%)。 一种说法称,2012年的公平分配收入法案是参议院民主党为了4月16日的程序性投票表决所安排的,而表决次日正是联邦所得税申报表的归档日期。这项规则旨在保年收入超过1百万美元的富人缴纳30%的所得税。Many do not. A report issued by the White House a day ahead of Mr Obama’s speech found that in , 22,000 households earning more than m paid less than 15% of their income in taxes, and 1,470 households paidno federal income tax at all. Since around 1980, average tax rates of the top 1% of American earners have fallen as their incomes have risen. Small wonder that the president proposed the Buffett rule, as Jason Furman, deputy director of the National Economic Council put it, “as a basic principle of tax fairness”.许多富人都没做到这点。在奥巴马总统发表演讲的前一天,一项由白宫发布的报告显示年2.2万个家庭收入超过1百万而仅缴纳不到15%的所得税,而1470个家庭干脆没有缴纳联邦所得税。自大约1980年以来,美国1%的富人阶层的收入增多了,但平均税率却降低了。只有少数人怀疑总统力挺巴菲特规则的动机,就像国际经济委员会的会长杰森·费曼说的:这是保持公平税收的基本准则。Alan Viard, an economist at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think-tank, describes the bill far less sexily: “It boils down to a partial rollback of the preferential rate for long-term capital gains.” Millionaires will retain their deductions for charitable donations, and those who aly pay more than 30%—earning their millions in a payroll job, say, rather than through tax-advantaged investment—will generally be unaffected.美国企业研究会的一名经济学家艾兰·维亚德是一个保守的智囊团,该法案在他眼中可远没有这么大的魅力:“它归结起来就是长期资本收益优惠税率的部分回落。”百万富翁都会继续进行慈善捐款活动,以少缴些税款,而那些年收入过百万且已缴纳超过30%所得税的人表示:通过优惠税率的投资,他们基本上就不会受到什么影响。Paul Ryan, a Republican congressman from Wisconsin who is emerging as Mr Obama’s foil on economic matters, complained that “people think the Buffett rule is sort of budget pixie-dust” that is “going to fix our fiscal problems”, when in fact it is forecast to raise around billion in ten years, according to congressional estimates: a drop in the proverbial bucket compared with both current deficit levels and projected spending levels over that period. Republicans are also quick to point out that the question of fairness cuts both ways. The top 1% of earners aly pay 40% of federal income taxes, while nearly half of all Americans pay no federal income taxes at all. Orrin Hatch, the ranking Republican on the Senate Finance Committee, dinged the bill for “being designed for no other reason than politics.”来自威斯康星洲的共和党议员保罗·瑞恩在奥巴马面临经济事务上的挫败时开始显露头角。他抱怨道:人们认为巴菲特规则是解决我们财政问题的某种有魔力的“预算仙尘”。实际上,根据国会估计,十年内预计筹集到的470亿美元税款,与当前的赤字水平和预计的出水平相比都是微不足道的。1%的富人阶层已经缴纳40%的联邦所得税了,而近一半的美国国民却根本不交联邦税。参议院财政委员会的头等共和党成员奥林·哈奇反复强调此法案“不过是政治手段”。But politics is now the point. With Rick Santorum’s exit from the Republican race, the general-election season has arrived. Scott Hodge, who heads the right-leaning Tax Foundation, calls the Buffett rule “a bludgeon to hit Mitt Romney with”. Indeed it is. When Mr Obama talks about millionaires using accountants, lawyers and tax-advantaged investments to lower their tax rates, he is talking about Mr Romney—whose net worth is around 0m, and who in the past two years made .6m, mostly from capital gains, and paid around 15% of his income in taxes.但目前政治就是关键。里克·桑多伦姆退出了共和党竞选后,大选赛季就来临了。右倾税务基金会首席官员斯科特·霍奇称巴菲特规则是“用来打击米特·罗姆尼的当头一棒”。它也的确如此。当奥巴马谈及百万富翁雇佣专业会计师、律师并利用优惠税率的投资使自己缴最低的税款时,他其实时在暗指罗姆尼——他的资本净值大约是2亿美元,在过去两年中他赚取的4.26千万美元大部分来自资本收益,而他只缴纳了约15%的所得税。201204/177991。

Even the mastodon is buried here, a long dead relative of modern elephants.甚至连乳齿象都被埋在这里,This was once a bear, but not like any bear in North America today.这里曾经有熊,但是和如今的北美大陆的熊是有区别的。Claw marks gouged into the cave wall showed the bear was not killed direct by the fall. It made a desperate attempt to climb back out.山洞墙壁上挖凿的爪印显示出熊并非死于直接坠亡。它曾绝望地想爬出这个山洞。It was a short-faced bear, an ice age heavyweight.这是只短面熊,冰河时期的重量级人物。What else can we tell about it from its bones? Its weight was more than 700 kilos, twice that of a grizzly bear today.从这些骨头中我们还能了解到什么呢?它的重量超过700公斤,是今天灰熊的两倍。Upright, it wouldve stood four meters tall. It was the largest flesh-eating mammal that ever walked the earth.它直立的时候有四米高,也是有史以来最大的食肉哺乳动物。The Wyoming cave, appropriately christened natural trap, provides a unique window of the Ice Age.被命名为自然陷阱的怀俄明洞穴,为探究冰河世纪打开一扇门。During its coldest era, much of North America was covered by huge ice sheets up to two miles thick, but as the continent began to warm, the ice sheets started shrinking.在最寒冷的时期,北美的很多地方被厚达两英里的巨大冰块覆盖着,但是随着大陆逐渐变暖,冰盖开始减小。Corridors began to open up along the coast and through the mountains, letting people migrate south from Alaska for the first time.沿着海岸,穿过山脉,一条条通道显现出来,人们第一次从阿拉斯加向南迁移。Before them lay the almost limitless great plains stretching all the way from the Rocky Mountains to the Mississippi River and beyond to Mexico.他们的面前是一望无际的大平原,一直从落基山脉延伸到密西西比河,越过了墨西哥。Across this area, the shifting ice left deep scars on the land.在这个区域,大块的浮冰运动在陆地上留下深深的印记。They carved out thousands of lakes and ponds, and left the tapestry of streams and rivers that drained the plains.它们刻画出成千上万的湖泊和池塘,勾勒出平原上如画般的溪流和小河。201303/231281。

Business商业报道Home entertainment家庭Netflix messes upNetflix这回弄巧成拙了The terror of the film and television business has become a lot less scary电影和电视业的担忧恐惧都显得微不足道It seldom pays to annoy your customers你难得会因为惹怒用户而付出代价LAST December Jeff Bewkes, Time Warners boss, sneered that Netflix threatened media about as much as the Albanian army threatened world peace.在去年12月,时代华纳的老板Jeff Bewkes曾嘲笑Netflix就像阿尔巴尼亚军队危害了世界和平一样危害了媒体业。Few were fooled. Netflix, which hires out DVDs through the post as well as streaming films and television through the internet,Netflix,一个凭借邮递务租售DVD光碟和通过互联网租售流媒体电影和电视节目的公司,had aly impoverished Hollywood by training people to rent DVDs instead of buying them.由于使得人们不再购买DVD光碟而只是租借它们,早已让好莱坞的收入大为缩水。It was starting to lure people away from pay-television.它在开始引诱人们离开付费频道,但上当者人数寥寥。But then the army began marching in the wrong direction, and its general shot himself in the foot.然而,这军队接下来开始朝着错误的方向进军,这次,这位上将是搬起石头砸了自己的脚。On September 1st Netflix began imposing new prices on its 25m subscribers.自9月1日起,Netflix开始对2500万订阅用户执行新的收费方案。Americans had been able to pay .99 a month for DVDs through the post as well as the right to stream some films and programmes.在这之前,美国人每个月只需付9.99美元,就能享受邮递租借DVD光碟和网络观赏一些流媒体电影、电视节目的务。Netflix would henceforth offer them a choice:现在,Netflix给了他们一个选择:.99 a month for streaming,要么每个月为流媒体务付7.99美元,or the same price for DVDs.要么以同样的价格租借DVD光碟。People who wanted both would pay .98.两种务都需要的人则需每月付15.98美元。Customers dont like it.用户们并不喜欢这个方案。They have jammed the firms switchboard and posted 82,000 largely hostile comments on its Facebook page.许多人的投诉电话蜂拥而至以致电话系统瘫痪,并且在Netflix的Facebook主页上留下了多达82000条的恶意。Netflix told investors to expect a rare loss of subscribers, driving its shares down.Netflix告知投资者们要做好因订阅用户人数大幅下降所带来的股份下滑的准备,The companys reputation for top-notch customer service has been tarnished.这所公司以顶级用户务著称的名誉已经蒙上了污点。So Netflixs founder and chief executive, Reed Hastings, tried to explain himself—and made matters far worse.因此,Netflix的创立人兼总裁Reed Hastings尝试为自己的决定辩解—却只是越描越黑。On September 18th Mr Hastings explained that the company feared being left behind by technological change, like AOL with its dial-up service.在9月18日,Hastings先生解释说到他害怕公司会像还在提供拨号上网业务的美国在线务公司那样被日新月异的科技变化抛在背后,It was separating DVDs from streaming because its future lies in streaming. The DVD-by-post service,之所以要把DVD光碟业务从流媒体业务中分离出来是因为这项业务的未来存在于流媒体技术之中。he said, would move to a new website, with a new billing system, and be renamed Qwikster.他说到,邮递租借DVD光碟业务将会被移至一个新的网站,拥有新的付系统,并被重新命名为Qwikster。Its an odd name and a big mistake.这真是一个怪名字和一个大错误。As The Economist went to press, Netflix shares were trading around 0—a steep decline from their July peak of 9.在本文交付印刷之时,Netflix的股票成交价大概在130美元左右—与他们在7月份299美元封顶的价格相比下了一个大滑坡。Netflix has made a tactical error and treated its customers shabbily.Netflix不仅犯了策略性错误,而且对待用户们糟糕透顶。It has also jumped too hastily into the future—as if Renault were to declare that electric cars are the future and rename its petrol-car division Qwikmobile.另外,它对未来的规划也太过急进—好比说雷诺公司对外宣称电动车是未来发展的方向,然后就把他们的汽车部门改名为Qwikmobile。Worst of all, Netflix has disregarded a big strategic advantage.而最糟糕的是,Netflix忽略了一个极其重要的战略优势。DVDs may be old media, but they come with strong legal protections.DVD光碟或许是老式媒介,但是它们有着强力的法律保护措施。As soon as a DVD is released by a Hollywood studio,当一张DVD光碟从好莱坞片场发布那刻起,roughly four months after the film appears in cinemas, Netflix can start renting it.大概只要在电影院上映后四个月,Netflix就可以开始租售。To stream a film via the internet, in contrast, Netflix must strike an agreement with the studio or TV firm that owns it.相比之下,如果Netflix要通过互联网来播放流媒体电影,则必须先和持有它的片场或电视公司签订协议。As Netflix has become richer and scarier, negotiations have become harder.随着Netflix变得越来越有钱,越来越胆小,协商日趋困难。The company must wait eight or nine years to stream many studio films.公司必须要等到8到9年才能播放许多片场的流媒体电影,A few media firms refuse to sell any streaming rights at all.一些媒体公司更是拒绝出售任何播放流媒体的权利。When Netflix combined DVDs and streaming, it offered both a vast selection of up-to-date content and the prospect of instant gratification.在Netflix将DVD光碟与流媒体电影电视两种务结合在一起时,它不仅提供了大量可选购的最新内容,而且很容易使用户感到满意。By forcing customers to choose between the two, it has revealed the weaknesses of both of its offerings.然而Netflix强迫用户其二而择一的行为,将两者的弱点都暴露了出来。Netflix isnt like the Albanian army—it is far more dangerous than that.Netflix其实并不像阿尔巴尼亚军队—毕竟他们危险多了。But it seems to have trained its guns against itself.但是这回,看起来他们是把口对准了自己。点击此处下载本期经济学人讲解PDF与音频字幕 /201304/233262。

Business商业Corporate governance in America美国的企业管治Heating up逐渐升温Shareholders are ever more willing to vote against management股东永远愿意对管理者投反对票TWENTY years ago Bob Monks bought an ad in the Wall Street Journal declaring members of the board of Sears, to which he hoped (in vain) to be elected, ;non-performing assets;. Nowadays, shareholder activists just create a website. On April 2nd Dan Loeb, a hedge-fund boss, launched valueyahoo.com, which brims with proposals for reviving the struggling web firm. Mr Loeb is trying to get himself elected to Yahoo!s board against the wishes of its managers-a fight that could be the highlight of the annual corporate proxy season that is getting under way. He may win the shareholder vote, if Yahoo! does not strike a deal with him first.20年前,鲍勃.蒙克斯在华尔街日报刊登了一则广告,宣称西尔斯百货的董事会成员是;不良资产;,在此之前,他渴望被选中的成为其中之一,可惜没有。现今,股东维权主义者只需创建一个网站即可。4月2号,一个对冲基金的老板丹?勒布,建立一个valueyahoo.com网站,公布了各种拯救雅虎这不景气网络公司的方案。勒布先生正尝试违背公司管理层的意愿,令自己被选进雅虎的董事会。一场可能成为公司年度股东大会期间的焦点战争正准备打响。一旦雅虎没有预先和他达成协议,他可能赢得股东们的选票。Several hedge funds are urging shareholders to give boards a good kicking. Starboard Value has nominated five candidates to the board of AOL, another ailing web firm. On April 2nd Pershing Square added a seventh candidate to the alternative slate of directors it has nominated to the board of Canadian Pacific Railway. Shareholder activism is ;getting back to normal after the financial crisis of 2008,; says Peter Harkins of D.F. King, a firm that advises participants in proxy contests.几个对冲基金正说股东们给董事会一个下马威。(美国对冲基金)Starboard Value已经给另一间衰落的网络公司——美国在线(AOL)的董事会里提名了五名候选人。4月2号,波欣广场(资本管理公司)在已经提命的加拿大太平洋铁路公司董事会候选人中增加第七位候选人作为董事的替代人。;股东激进主义在2008年经济危机后现正回归到正常。;D.F. King的皮得.哈更斯说,D.F. King是一间为代理权争夺的参与者提供咨询的公司。.It is not just hedge funds that are flexing their shareholderly muscles. Pension funds are at it, too. On March 27th it was reported that Goldman Sachs had made peace with the pension fund of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME), which had proposed a resolution to split the roles of chief executive and chairman, both of which are held by Lloyd Blankfein. The bank convinced AFSCME to withdraw its proposal by agreeing to appoint a ;lead director; to keep Mr Blankfein in check. The union has made similar proposals at several firms, including JPMorgan Chase, whose boss AFSCMEs president calls the ;most dangerous man in America;. Rupert Murdoch, the embattled chairman and chief executive of News Corporation, will face a motion that he surrender his chairmanship to someone independent.不仅仅是对冲基金显示了他们的股东权力。养老基金同样如此。在3月27号,据报道,高盛投资公司与美国养老基金会以及美国工会达成协议,工会在为分离首席执行官与董事会提出了解决方案,而此前两个职位都是由贝兰克梵担任的。高盛同意任命一个;首席董事;以限制贝兰克梵,以此说美国工会会撤销它的方案。该联合会在几间公司都采用了类似的方法,包括JP根大通——美国工会主席称他们的老板为;美国最危险的男人;。鲁伯特.默多克,一个新闻公司备受争议的董事会主席兼首席执行官,将面临一项移交他的主席身份给某个独立人的变动。Two other issues are expected to attract scrutiny from shareholders this year. One is bosses pay. Investors will show ;a little more backbone; in curbing it, ;having rather fluffed it last year;, predicts Anne Simpson, who oversees the corporate-governance activities of CalPERS, a giant pension fund for Californias public employees. Many boards struggled to win 70% support for pay packages last year, the first time such votes were required. This year, several could lose the vote (which is not binding) unless they have linked pay more explicitly to performance, reckons Paul Hodgson of GMI Ratings, a firm that measures corporate governance.另外两个问题今年将有望得到股东们的严格审查。一个是领导者的工资。投资者将在处理这一问题上显示更大的决心,;去年已经付出了很多;,辛普森组织认为,该组织负责监督加州公务员基金——这一巨型的加利福尼亚公务员的养老基金的管理活动。许多董事会通过抗争,去年在薪酬福利当面赢得了约70%持,第一次被要求进行这样的投票。今年,一些董事会可能会失去票数,(那些曾处于中立的票)除非他们把工资与绩效明确地挂钩起来。GMI评级机构的保罗-霍奇森这样指出,GMI是一间评估公司治理的公司。Perhaps the most contentious resolutions will be those demanding that firms be more transparent about their political spending, and requiring boards to ensure that this money is used in the interests of shareholders, not managers. This effort is being fiercely resisted. The US Chamber of Commerce argues that these resolutions, which mostly come from shareholders who are also trade unions or social activists, are not in the best interests of the firms concerned. Jim Copland of the Manhattan Institute, a think-tank, says that ;some of these proposals may serve primarily to chill corporate political speech broadly, including on issues that most diversified shareholders-as distinguished from the proposals sponsors-might prefer that the corporations views be heard.;可能最有争议的解决方案是那些要求公司在关于政治方面的花费更加透明,且同时要求董事会确保这些钱被用到符合股东的利益上而不是管理层。这一方案被强烈地抵制。美国商会认为这些解决方案,大多数是由来自工会或者是社会活动家的股东们提出,方案并不符合公司所关注的最大利益。一个曼哈顿研究所的智囊团,吉姆.科普兰认为;其中的一些建议中的可能主要是为广泛地冻结公司政治性言论;,其中包括关于股东多样化的问题,有别于建议赞助商,这些股东们可能更喜欢公司的意见被听到。Well, maybe. But, as with the other issues on the proxy this year, that is for shareholders to decide.也许是这样。但就像今年董事会中的其他问题一样,这都将由股东们去决定。 /201210/203665。

Whats a Fly Doing in Antarctica?南极有苍蝇?Sometimes the biggest finds are the smallest finds. Researchers examining a segment of siltstone taken from ground along the Beardmore glacier in Antarctica found something unexpected. They found a fly.有时候,重大发现源于很小的发现。研究人员在南极比尔德莫尔冰川采集回来的一块粉砂岩中意外地发现了苍蝇。Well, not exactly a fly. They found a fly fossil–its a segment of the exoskeleton, the protective shell, of a fly larva. While the larvae are still growing, they are protected by a thin shell. And where theres larval shell, there are flies. So what are flies doing in Antarctica? Its much too cold there for flies. And the closest fly-friendly location, South America, is thousands of miles away.准确地说,不是苍蝇,而是苍蝇的化石。一块保护幼虫的外骨骼。在薄壳的保护下,幼虫还在发育。幼虫的蛹壳明了苍蝇的存在。那么,苍蝇怎么会在南极呢?南极冰冷的气候不适宜苍蝇生长啊!反而,最适宜苍蝇生存的地方——南非,却远在几千里之外。Part of the answer is that the fly fossil is ancient–it was found with a number of other fossilized things that have been dated between three million and seventeen million years old. Its possible that the fly lived during a period when sea levels were much lower there than they now are. Lower sea levels means wider continents –think of standing on the edge of a beach and having the water pull back. And wider continents means its more likely that living things might travel across the gap.正解可能是因为这块苍蝇的化石和一起发现的其它化石可以追溯到300万到700万年前了。很可能,苍蝇生长的那个时期,海水没有现在那么高,这意味着陆地面积更大。想象自己站在海边,浪打回来。广阔的陆地面积让生物更有可能跨越于大陆间。Or maybe not. Maybe flies are much older than anyone thought. We know that what we now call Antarctica was once connected to both South America and Australia. But that was around eighty million years ago, and flies arent thought to be that old.另种可能是苍蝇在地球上生存的时间比我们想象的还要久远。要知道,现在的南极曾经和南美大陆及澳大利亚大陆是接壤的。但这也是8000万年前的事了,那时候,苍蝇已经在地球上了?Whatever the answer is, something in our understanding of the continents, the seas, or fly evolution has to be fixed. Thats one of the best things about science–a really big change can come from the discovery of something really small.不管究竟是什么,我们所认识的大陆、海洋、苍蝇进化的常识之一要得以修正。这就是科学的妙处,一个小小的发现或许能推翻重大定论。 /201301/220747。