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Cant watch Tenet? Now is the perfect time to revisit Inception

An old man waiting for someone “from a half-remembered dream.” Warner Bros.

Sharing a dream: Arth..

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  • An old man waiting for someone "from a half-remembered dream." Warner Bros.
  • Sharing a dream: Arthur (Joseph Gordon-Levitt), Mr. Saito (Ken Watanbe), and Dom Cobb (Leonardo DiCaprio). Warner Bros.
  • Marion Cotillard plays Mal, Cobb's dead wife, now a subconscious manifestation of his guilt. Warner Bros.
  • Her manifestation isn't particularly friendly. Warner Bros.
  • A cold bath provides the perfect "kick" to wake the dreamer. Warner Bros.
  • Cobb uses a spinning top as a totem to check whether he's still dreaming or back in reality. Warner Bros.
  • Saito hires Cobb and his team for a seemingly impossible psychological "heist." Warner Bros.
  • The target: Robert Michael Fischer (Cillian Murphy), heir to a business empire. Warner Bros.
  • Cobb's former mentor, Professor Stephen Miles (Michael Caine), is also his father-in-law. Warner Bros.
  • Miles recommends his graduate student, Ariadne (Ellen Page), to be the "architect" and design the necessary dreamscapes for Cobb's team. Warner Bros.
  • The famous French cafe scene within a dreamscape. Warner Bros.
  • Ariadne manipulates the physics of Cobb's dreamscape. Warner Bros.
  • Ariadne stumbles upon Cobb's dark secret. Warner Bros.
  • Yusuf (Dileep Rao) is an avant-garde pharmacologist who cooks up a special drug cocktail for the mission. Warner Bros.
  • Arthur and Ariadne share a dream. Warner Bros.
  • "You mustn't be afraid to dream a little bigger, darling." Eames (Tom Hardy) specializes in identity theft. Warner Bros.
  • A runaway train intrudes onto the first level dreamscape. Warner Bros.

Director Christopher Nolan's hotly anticipated new film Tenet is finally playing in select theaters. But not everybody is able to watch it—New York, Los Angeles, and San Francisco are all major US markets where theaters remain closed. If you're not among those lucky enough to live near a reopened theater where the film is showing—and you're not keen on driving for four hours to find an open theater—now is the perfect time to revisit what is arguably Nolan's masterpiece: the mind-bending thriller, Inception, which marks its tenth anniversary this year. The film grossed over $829 million globally and was nominated for eight Oscars, winning four. (It lost the Best Picture Oscar to The King's Speech.)

(Spoilers below, because it's been ten years.)

Nolan first submitted his treatment for a horror film involving "dream stealers" to Warner Bros. back in 2002, but decided he didn't yet have sufficient experience as a director to do justice to what he envisioned, which he knew would require a large budget. "As soon as you're talking about dreams, the potential of the human mind is infinite," he told the New York Times in 2010. "And so the scale of the film has to feel infinite. It has to feel like you could go anywhere by the end of the film. And it has to work on a massive scale."

So he made Batman Begins (2005), The Prestige (2006), and The Dark Knight (2008), until he felt confident enough to revisit his old treatment. While writing the script, Nolan found inspiration in Blade Runner (1982), The Matrix (1999), and the works of Jorge Luis Borges, particularly the short stories "The Secret Miracle" and "The Circular Ruins." The former features time slowing down to forestall a death; the latter is about someone constructing a person in his dreams and beginning to question his own reality. Both elements play crucial roles in Nolan's fictional world.

Inception is a master class in elaborate world-building. Nolan originally wrote the script as a heist film, before deciding against it, telling the Los Angeles Times that the story relied too heavily "on the idea of an interior state, the idea of dream and memory" for a straightforward heist framework to really work. But those heist elements do provide a useful scaffolding for the intricate plot.

Leonardo DiCaprio (Titanic, The Revenant) stars as Dom Cobb, an "extractor" who conducts corporate espionage for his clients by infiltrating a target's subconscious via a shared dream world. Cobb is an American in exile, wanted in the United States for allegedly murdering his wife, Mal (Marion Cotillard, The Dark Knight Rises); their two children live with his father-in-law and former mentor, Professor Stephen Miles (Michael Caine, Batman Begins, The Dark Knight).

An impossible dream?

A Japanese businessman named Mr. Saito (Ken Watanabe, The Last Samurai, Godzilla) hires Cobb for a uniquely difficult and dangerous mission: not just stealing information from the target's subconscious, but actually implanting an original idea and making the target think it was his own—the "inception" of the title. In exchange, he will make Cobb's banishment from the US disappear so he can go home again.

So Cobb puts a team together, starting with his longtime associate, Arthur (Joseph Gordon-Levitt, Looper), who is skeptical that inception is even possible. Eames (Tom Hardy, The Dark Knight Rises, Mad Max: Fury Road) specializes in forgery and identity theft—he has the ability to impersonate other people within a dreamscape—and thinks it's possible, just extremely difficult. Yusuf (Dileep Rao) is a rogue pharmacologist, recruited to engineer just the right combination of drugs for the mission. Cobb recruits one of Miles' gifted graduate students, Ariadne (Ellen Page, The Umbrella Academy) as the "architect" of the dreamscapes. He himself is no longer able to safely do so, thanks to unwelcome dream intrusions by a psychological projection of Mal—the product of his own grief and guilt over her death.

The target is Robert Fischer (Cillian Murphy, Batman Begins, Peaky Blinders), heir to a business empire that is close to achieving global dominance, to the detriment of Saito's own business interests. His father, Maurice Fischer (Peter Postlethwaite, Clash of the Titans), is on his deathbed. The goal is to implant the idea for Robert to voluntarily break up his father's empire, in favor of creating something of his own rather than merely inheriting what his father built.

Cobb and his team decide they must construct three separate dreamscape levels—a dream within a dream within a dream—each reaching deeper into Fischer's subconscious, for the scheme to work. (Each level has its own distinctive look, thanks to director of photography Wally Pfister.) One person will be the "dreamer" for each level, remaining behind as the others proceed downward, responsible for setting up a coordinated "kick" to awaken the other team members. (Edith Piaf's "Non, je ne regrette rien" serves as an auditory cue.) Things do not go quite as smoothly as they'd hoped when they put their plans into motion.

(Warning: Major spoilers below the gallery.)

  • The truth about Mal is revealed. Warner Bros.
  • Cobb and Arthur cautiously navigate a hotel corridor within the second-level dreamscape. Warner Bros.
  • Eames shows his skill as an identity thief. Warner Bros.
  • Because it's his dream, Arthur must watch over the dreamers on the second level—and eventually wake them up. Warner Bros.
  • Cobb and his team arrive at the third level of the dreamscape. Warner Bros.
  • The infamous fight in the revolving hotel hallway. Warner Bros.
  • Cobb tries to take out as many projections as he can. Warner Bros.
  • Developments in the action ripple through the various dream levels, putting the level-two dreamers into free fall. Warner Bros.
  • "How do I drop you without gravity?" Warner Bros.
  • Albert Einstein and general relativity hold the key to generating a strong enough kick on the second level. Warner Bros.
  • Cobb and Ariadne descend into limbo to rescue their fallen compatriots. Warner Bros.
  • Robert confronts his psychological trauma. Warner Bros.
  • Peter Postlethwaite plays Maurice Fisher, Robert's late father. Warner Bros.
  • The pinwheel holds emotional significance for Robert. Warner Bros.
  • Kaboom! The "kick" starts on the third level. Read More – Source

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Spain’s competition watchdog opens disciplinary case against Google

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Spain’s competition watchdog, the ‘Comisión Nacional de los Mercados y la Competencia’ (CNMC) has opened a disciplinary case against Google for alleged anti-competitive practices affecting publishers and Spanish news agencies, it said in a statement on Tuesday.

CNMC said it was investigating whether Google had abused its dominant position in the Spanish market. The proceedings involve Google LLC, Google Ireland Ltd, Google Spain, SL., and the overall parent company Alphabet Inc.

The alleged practices also include distorting free competition and imposing unfair conditions on press publishers and Spanish news agencies, CNMC said.

The watchdog’s investigation was sparked by a complaint from the Spanish Reproduction Rights Centre (CEDRO).

CNMC will investigate the case over the next 18 months, during which both sides can present their arguments.

According to RTVE, Spain’s national broadcaster, Google will analyse the file and respond to the ‘doubts’ of the CNMC. They said that Google ‘works constructively with publishers in Spain and Europe’ and would ‘need time to analyse the details … as the nature of the claims is still not clear’.

It is not the first action by the Spanish competition regulator against Google, nor the first in which its dominant position in the media sector stands out. In 2021, CNMC already warned that this company and another technology giant, Amazon, monopolised 70% of internet advertising in Spain.

Other lawsuits in the Netherlands and the UK have previously accused the technology company of abusing its dominance in the digital advertising market to harm its competitors. France also fined Google in 2021 for not negotiating in good faith compensation for the media for using its news content.

 

Read from: https://www.spainenglish.com/2023/03/28/spain-competition-watchdog-opens-disciplinary-case-against-google/

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How does technology affect reading and writing?

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Technology has dramatically changed the way we read and write in the 21st century. From e-books and online articles to social media and instant messaging, technology has made reading and writing more accessible and convenient. However, it has also brought about new challenges and concerns.

One of the biggest benefits of technology is the increased access to information. With just a few clicks, people can access an endless supply of books, articles, and other written materials from all over the world. This has made reading and writing more accessible for people who may not have had the opportunity to do so in the past. It has also allowed for greater collaboration, as people can now share their writing and receive feedback from a global audience.

Technology has also made writing and reading more interactive. Social media and blogs have made it possible for people to engage with written content in real-time, sharing their thoughts, opinions, and experiences with others. This has led to a more dynamic and engaged reading and writing community, with people able to communicate and connect with each other in new and meaningful ways.

However, there are also concerns about how technology is affecting our ability to read and write. One of the biggest concerns is the decline of attention span. With so much information available at our fingertips, it can be difficult to stay focused and absorb what we are reading. Many people find it difficult to concentrate on longer written works, and are instead drawn to shorter, more bite-sized pieces of content.

Additionally, technology has led to an increase in informal writing. The widespread use of text messaging and instant messaging has led to the widespread use of shorthand and abbreviations. This has created concerns about the impact it may have on people’s writing skills, as well as the way they communicate with others.

Another concern is the rise of “fake news.” With the ease of publishing content online, it has become increasingly difficult to differentiate between credible and unreliable sources. This has led to a decline in trust in the media, and has created a need for critical thinking and media literacy skills.

Despite these concerns, technology has also provided new opportunities for writing and reading. E-books and online platforms have made it easier for people to self-publish their work, giving them greater control over the distribution and promotion of their writing. This has created a more democratized publishing industry, and has made it possible for voices and perspectives that may have previously been excluded to be heard.

In conclusion, technology has had a profound impact on reading and writing. While there are certainly challenges and concerns, the increased access to information, the ability to connect and engage with others, and the opportunities for self-publishing have all made reading and writing more accessible and dynamic. As technology continues to evolve, it will be important to address the challenges it presents and embrace the opportunities it provides.

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How to measure human intelligence?

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Measuring human intelligence is a complex task that has been attempted by many experts and researchers over the years. Intelligence is often defined as an individual’s ability to think, reason, and solve problems. However, this definition is not enough to capture all the aspects of intelligence. In this article, we will look at some of the ways that human intelligence can be measured and evaluated.

  1. Intelligence Quotient (IQ) Tests: IQ tests are the most commonly used method of measuring intelligence. They are designed to measure an individual’s ability to solve problems, think logically, and understand abstract concepts. The results of an IQ test are expressed as an IQ score, which is a number that represents a person’s intellectual abilities in comparison to the general population.
  2. Achievement Tests: Achievement tests are designed to evaluate an individual’s knowledge and skills in specific subjects such as mathematics, reading, or science. These tests can be a good indicator of a person’s intelligence in a particular subject area and are often used in schools and colleges to assess students’ abilities.
  3. Neuropsychological Tests: Neuropsychological tests are used to evaluate the functioning of the brain and nervous system. These tests can be used to diagnose neurological disorders, measure cognitive abilities, and determine the impact of injury or illness on a person’s cognitive abilities.
  4. Cognitive Ability Tests: Cognitive ability tests are designed to measure an individual’s mental abilities such as memory, reasoning, and problem-solving. These tests can be useful in determining a person’s potential for learning and development.
  5. Behavioral Assessment: Behavioral assessment involves evaluating an individual’s behavior, including their social skills, emotional regulation, and communication abilities. This type of assessment can be useful in identifying areas where an individual may need support or intervention.
  6. Performance-Based Tests: Performance-based tests are designed to measure an individual’s abilities in real-world tasks and activities. These tests can be useful in determining a person’s practical intelligence and can be used in a variety of settings, including schools, workplaces, and healthcare facilities.

It is important to note that no single method of measuring intelligence is perfect and each has its own strengths and limitations. Additionally, the results of intelligence tests can be influenced by many factors such as cultural background, education, and experience. As a result, it is important to use a variety of assessment methods to get a more comprehensive understanding of an individual’s intelligence.

In conclusion, measuring human intelligence is a complex task that involves evaluating a variety of cognitive, behavioral, and performance-based abilities. While intelligence tests can provide valuable information about a person’s intellectual abilities, it is important to use a variety of assessment methods to get a more comprehensive understanding of an individual’s intelligence. By using a combination of tests, experts and researchers can get a more complete picture of an individual’s intellectual abilities and potential for learning and development.

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