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Virtual reality can boost empathy

Virtual reality can boost empathy

Science
Oct. 17 (UPI) -- Virtual reality could be used to boost empathy, new research suggests. The tool could be used to encourage tolerance and acceptance of marginalized groups. Empathy is the ability to understand and relate to other perspectives, thoughts and emotions of others. Studies show higher levels of empathy are linked with altruistic behavior. For research purposes, behavioral psychologists sometimes encourage empathy by asking study participants to adopt the prospect of other people. For the new study, researchers at Stanford University used virtual reality to induce empathy. Scientists hypothesized virtual reality would enhance the empathy-boosting effects of perspective-taking tasks. For their experiment, researchers recruited 500 participants to learn about homelessness. Differ...
Hot summer gives boost to UK economy

Hot summer gives boost to UK economy

Business
The UK economy grew by 0.7% in the three months to August, buoyed by the hot summer, the Office for National Statistics said.But the ONS said that in August, GDP growth was flat. Economists had predicted 0.1% growth.The three-month measure was the fastest pace of growth since February 2017, economists said.The ONS's head of GDP, Rob Kent-Smith, said the economy had "continued to rebound strongly after a weak spring".He said "retail, food and drink production and house building all performing particularly well during the hot summer months"."However, long-term growth continues to lag behind its historical trend," Mr Kent-Smith added. The ONS has introduced monthly measures of GDP and provides three-month rolling growth figu...
Wisconsin getting boost vs. BYU

Wisconsin getting boost vs. BYU

Sports
Wisconsin has received a boost with the return of wide receiver Danny Davis for Saturday's game against BYU. Davis served a two-game suspension stemming from a criminal complaint from an April 22 incident. Junior receiver Quintez Cephus remains suspended from the team. But Davis' return is a plus as he replaces redshirt sophomore Adam Krumholz on the depth chart. "I think that it's one more player that's played," Wisconsin coach Paul Chryst said of Davis. "Danny's still young. He's starting his second season, but I think that he's a guy that's played in games before and made plays, so I think that he gives you some depth. Certainly, he's different that any of the receivers we're playing with right now, so he gives you depth and a little bit of a different skill set." The Badgers (2-0) ha...
FCA suggests 'basic savings rate' to boost returns

FCA suggests 'basic savings rate' to boost returns

Business
Banks could be forced to set a minimum interest rate on their savings accounts, the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA) has suggested.The FCA said it was concerned that savers who stay with the same bank or building society for a long time get poor returns on their money.Some banks currently pay just 0.05% a year on instant access accounts.The Basic Savings Rate (BSR) would apply to all easy access cash ISA products, as well as savings accounts.It would be applied after the account had been opened for a set period, for example one year. FCA considers texts to warn of low savings rates Why hasn't my savings rate gone up yet? "Providers can take advantage of high levels of customer inaction to pay lower interest rates to longstanding customers," said Christop...
Slowing Gulf Stream current to boost warming for 20 years

Slowing Gulf Stream current to boost warming for 20 years

Science
The prospect of the Gulf Stream slowing down and even stopping altogether has worried many experts in recent years. Some believed that this would cause a rapid cooling around the world with resulting global chaos.But a new study finds the Gulf Stream go-slow will have a significant impact on planetary temperatures, but not in a chilled out way.The Gulf Stream is an ocean current that keeps the UK warmer than it would be given its latitude alone.Researchers say a slower current will carry less heat down to the deep oceans meaning more will enter the atmosphere.Worries over the fate of the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (Amoc), of which the Gulf Stream is part, were graphically illustrated in the 2004 film, The Day After Tomorrow. It focused on...