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经典唯美简单的英语文摘

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  世界人口 The World s Population

  The first fifty years of the next millennium will be critical for the world's population. By 2050 population growth should have leveled off, but by then we'll have 10 billion people--two-thirds as many again as we have today. The rate of population growth is something we can choose right now, though: it's not something that just happens, but a matter of human choice. The choice is a complicated one,with many variables, but it remains a choice.

  新千年的前50年对世界人口来说是至关重要的,到2050年,世界人口将趋于平稳,但到那时,世界人口将达到100亿,比现在多2/3。但人D增长率是我们现在能选择的事:它不是顺应天意而产生的,而是人类的选择。这一选择相当复杂,有许多因素,但它依然是一种选择。

  If we want to prevent a population explosion, we should take action now -or assist the poorer countries to do so. They need better government, better institutions, better labor and capital markets, better schools. Anything that increases the value of women's time and adds to the cost of caring for a child makes a woman less likely to have that child. Since big families are often seen as safety nets for illness and old age, improving poor people's access to insurance, pensions and welfare institutions also has a major impact. This can be as simple as rural credit, providing a means of saving. Finally, there is education--both for women and, perhaps even more important, for the next generation of children.

  要想避免人口爆炸,我们现在就应采取行动——或者说应帮助比较穷的国家来控制人口,因为他们需要更好的政府、机构、劳动力及资本市场和学校。任何使一个妇女增加抚养孩子的时间或抚养孩子费用的事都使得那个妇女不太想要这个孩子。由于大家庭经常被认为是年老生病时的安全网,让穷人进一步获得保险、退休金和福利机构的帮助也会在控制人口生育上起重大作用。这可以像农村信用制度那样简单,为人们提供一种储蓄的手段。最后还有教育问题——既有对妇女的教育,也有更重要的对下一代的教育。

  These steps are there to be taken, but there appear to be some countries that are not seriously trying at the moment. If we cannot achieve that we will certainly not control population.

  以上这些都是应采取的措施,但看来有些国家目前并没有认真去做,如果我们不能做到这一点,我们就不能控制人口。

  That said, I don't feel pessimistic that we are going to run out of resources: we are becoming more efficient at producing food faster than the rate at which population is increasing. There is, however, a risk that we will wreck the environment so effectively that the world will no longer be an attractive place to live. That really would be a dismal outcome, to reach world population equilibrium only to find we'd destroyed the natural environment in the process.

  及此,我对我们资源殆尽并不悲观:我们生产粮食的速度超过了人口增长的速度。然而,我们也存在这样的危险:我们会彻底毁坏环境,以致于地球将不再是一个吸引人居住的地方。那确实是一个可悲的结果:实现了人口的平衡却换来了自然环境的破坏。

  人脑与电脑的区别

  The difference between a brain and a computer can be expressed in a single word:complexity.

  要形容人脑与电脑的区别只需一个词,即:复杂。

  Even the most complicated computer man has yet built can't compare in intricacy with the brain. Computer switches and comportents number in the thousands rather than in the billions.What's more, the computer switch is just an on-off device,whereas the brain cell is itself possessed of a tremendously complex inner structure.

  即使是迄今为止人类制造出的最复杂的电脑如果与人脑的复杂相比也望尘莫及。电脑转换组合出的数字只有千百万种而不是千百亿。更重要的是,电脑的转换器只是一个开关装置,而大脑细胞本身就具有极其复杂的内部结构。

  Can a computer think? That depends on what you mean by "think". If solving a mathematical problem is "thinking", then a computer can "think" and do so much faster than a man. Of course, most mathematical problems can be solved quite mechanically by repeating certain straightforward processes over and over again. Even the simple computers of today can be geared for that.

  电脑会“思考”吗?这就要看你所说的“思考”是指什么了。如果解一道数学题是“思考”,那么电脑会“思考”,而且比人脑快得多。当然,绝大多数数学题都可以通过一遍一遍机械地重复简单的程序而得到解决。即使是现今简单的计算机也能做到这点。

  Surely, though, if a computer can be made complex enough, it can be as creative as we are. If it could be made as complex as a human brain, it could be the equivalent of a human brain and do whatever a human brain can do.

  然而,电脑如果能造得够复杂,它也能和我们一样富于创造力。如果它能造得同人脑一样复杂,它便能与人脑相媲美,并能做到人脑能做到的一切。

  But how long will it take to build a computer complex enough to duplicate the human brain? Perhaps not as long as some think. Long before we approach a computer as complex as our brain, we will perhaps build a computer that is at least complex enough to design another computer more complex than itself. This more complex computer could design one still more complex and so on and so on and so on.

  但是,要造出一个与人脑一样复杂的电脑要花多长时间呢?或许不会像有些人想象的那么长。在造出与人脑一样复杂的电脑之前,我们也许可能要先造出一个电脑,它复杂得至少能设计出比它本身更复杂的电脑。那个更复杂的电脑又能再设计出比自己更复杂的电脑,如此反复。

  In other words, once we pass a certain critical point, the computers take over and there is a "complexity explosion". In a very short time thereafter, computers may exist that not only duplicate the human brain--but far surpass it.

  换言之,我们一旦突破了某个极点,电脑将盛行起来,并导致“复杂性爆炸”。不久,电脑将不仅复制人脑,而且将远远超越人脑。

  不要伤害蜘蛛 Spare that spider

  Why, you may wonder, should spiders be our friends? Because they destroy so many insects, and insects include some of the greatest enemies of the human race.Insects would make it impossible for us to live in the world; they would devour all our crops and kill our flocks and herds, if it were not for the protection we get from insect-eating animals.We owe a lot to the birds and beasts who eat insects but all of them put together kill only a fraction of the number destroyed by spiders.Moreover, unlike some of the other insect eaters, spiders never do the least harm to us or our belongings.

  你可能会觉得奇怪,蜘蛛怎么会是我们的朋友呢?因为它们能消灭那么多的昆虫,其中包括一些人类的大敌。要不是人类受一些食虫动物的保护,昆虫就会使我们无法在地球上生活下去,昆虫会吞食我们的全部庄稼,杀死我们的成群的牛羊。我们要十分感谢那些吃昆虫的鸟和兽,然而把它们所杀死的昆虫全部加在一起也只相当于蜘蛛所消灭的一小部分。此外,蜘蛛不同于其他食虫动物,它们丝毫不危害我们和我们的财物。

  Spiders are not insects, as many people think, nor even nearly related to them.One can tell the difference almost at a glance, for a spider always has eight legs and an insect never more than six.

  许多人认为蜘蛛是昆虫,但它们不是昆虫,甚至与昆虫毫无关系。人们几乎一眼就能看出二者的差异,因为蜘蛛都是8条腿,而昆虫的腿从不超过6条。

  How many spiders are engaged in this work on our behalf? One authority on spiders made a census of the spiders in a grass field in the south of England, and he estimated that there were more than 2,250,000 in one acre; that is something like 6,000,000 spiders of different kinds on a football pitch.Spiders are busy for at least half the year in killing insects.It is impossible to make more than the wildest guess at how many they kill, but they are hungry creatures, not content with only three meals a day.It has been estimated that the weight of all the insects destroyed by spiders in Britain in one year would be greater than the total weight of all the human beings in the country.

  有多少蜘蛛在为我们效力呢?一位研究蜘蛛的权威对英国南部一块草坪上的蜘蛛作了一次调查。他估计每英亩草坪里有225万多只蜘蛛。这就是说,在一个足球场上约有600万只不同种类的蜘蛛。蜘蛛至少有半年忙于吃昆虫。它们一年中消灭了多少昆虫,我们简直无法猜测,它们是吃不饱的动物,不满意一日三餐。据估计,在英国蜘蛛一年里所消灭昆虫的重量超过了这个国家人口的总重量。


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