Q: When you look into the autorefractor, you often see a faraway house or balloon. Why do they use this kind of picture in the machine?
(A) It checks the sight in both of your eyes.
(B) It helps keep your eyes from moving.
(C) The different colors make our sight more active.
Doctors use these kinds of pictures to help your eyes focus on one place. That way, the autorefractor can take measurements correctly. Looking at a faraway object helps your eyes relax. This also helps the autorefractor do its job. Sometimes, the picture doesn't look clear. It's not because you can't see well. It's another way to make your eyes relax more.
In May, people around the world cheered for Taiwan. They were cheering because the country did something exciting. It let same-sex couples marry.
This change is very big. Taiwan is the first country in Asia to have same-sex marriage. This shows something important: same-sex relationships can be part of any culture.
However, same-sex couples do not have full, equal rights in Taiwan yet. For example, they can't adopt most children. What's more, they can't marry people from some countries. However, Taiwan won't give up. One person said, “We will celebrate today and fight tomorrow.”
Something surprising has happened to Barcelona's most iconic building—and no, it's still not finished. This June, the Sagrada Familia finally got a building permit, 137 years after its first bricks were laid.
It isn't clear why the world-famous church didn't have permission for so long. Its architect, Antonio Gaudí, applied for one from Sant Martí de Provençals, where the Sagrada Familia was previously located. However, a permit was never given, and in 1897, the town became part of Barcelona. Not much happened with the application until recently. Then, last year, the church was forced to pay US$46.1 million to Barcelona's government to correct the problem.
For now, the Sagrada Familia's legal troubles haven't delayed any work on the building. It is reported that it will be completed in 2026, a century after Gaudí's death. However, the project is known for its extremely slow progress. With that in mind, its millions of visitors will have to see that deadline be met to believe it.
Work is going brilliantly, but you certainly don't feel brilliant. You're tired, exhausted even, and you're always getting sick. The doctors say nothing is wrong with you, but you certainly don't feel that way. What could possibly be the matter?
For centuries, many cultures have told stories of strange sea creatures. One of these is a half-fish, half-human female creature called a mermaid. The first mermaid legend may have started around 1000 BC. It was about an Assyrian goddess whose legs became a fish tail when she jumped into a lake. Similar creatures called sirens were mentioned in Homer's Odyssey, an ancient Greek tale from the eighth century BC. They attracted sailors to their deaths with their beautiful voices. You'll find mermaid legends in African and Caribbean cultures in the form of water spirits as well.
People still enjoy mermaid stories to this day. One of the best-loved is The Little Mermaid, written by Hans Christian Andersen in 1837. In it, a mermaid trades her voice to become a human because she is in love with a prince. It's common for mermaids in legends to take on a human form and tie the knot with mortal men.
Modern Internet culture has given us many oddly enjoyable forms of entertainment. From short videos of teenage humor to lists of funny Twitter posts, there's no end to the ways we can spend our time online. However, one of the strangest to those who haven't seen it before might be the culture of mukbang. This involves Internet users uploading videos of themselves preparing and eating meals, which commonly include enormous amounts of food—often more than 10,000 calories! Mukbang stars can have millions of followers—but what makes the seemingly mundane activity of eating so fun to watch?
To answer that question, it's important to know where mukbang comes from. The trend and the term came to life on the South Korean streaming site AfreecaTV, combining the Korean words meokneun (eating) and bangsong (broadcast). In South Korea, it's uncommon for people to dine alone, and dining in public means adopting strict meal etiquette. So-called “mukbangers” break both these rules by celebrating messy solo eating experiences.
On a deeper level, the popularity of mukbang videos may have something to do with fighting off loneliness. More and more people live and eat alone these days. The elderly are most affected by this. For example, one in five people over 70 in the UK eat most meals by themselves. Watching mukbang videos or streams, during which mukbangers may not only eat but also chat with viewers, can be a source of comfort and a substitute for shared dining. As food has always been a means for people to bond with one another, it seems natural that online communities also rally around the simple activity of eating for an audience.
If you're keen for an escape from your busy life in the city, one of Taiwan's offshore islands might be the perfect choice for your next travel destination. Two particularly stunning must-sees are Green Island and Orchid Island, which are sure to impress travelers with their rich histories, marvelous natural sites, and cultural artifacts.
Start with Green Island. This lush location is an appealing place for those interested in Taiwan's political past. Well known for its role during the White Terror, the island was once used as a place of exile for political prisoners. Over 36 years, more than 20,000 prisoners were shipped to Green Island. Once released, many of these activists joined forces to establish the Democratic Progressive Party. Today, the island's prison facilities remain as a human rights park and serve as a popular attraction for many of the 300,000 tourists that visit the island annually.
Beyond the island's significant past, another one of its attractions is its unique hot springs. In fact, Green Island boasts one of the only three seawater hot springs across the globe. Not only do the spring's open-air pools face the ocean toward a peaceful view to accompany your soak, but their crystal-clear water lacks the sulfur smell produced by many hot springs, which some guests are sensitive to.
Those seeking adventure shouldn't miss experiencing the Shilang Diving Area. Under the glassy waters, snorkelers and divers can marvel at the world's largest Porites coral, the “Big Mushroom,” believed to be over 1,200 years old. The waters are also home to a number of brightly colored tropical fish.