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2015年12月英语六级翻译练习:形体政治学

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  Science and technology

  科学及技术

  Human communication

  人类交流

  Gesture politics

  形体政治学

  People talk a lot, but their hand signals may conveymore useful information

  虽然人类主要通过语言交流,但是一些手势往往能传达更多有用的信息。

  Silence is golden

  沉默是金

  IT IS received wisdom that humanity owes a lot of its evolutionary success to its remarkableability to communicate.

  人类在进化上的成功大部分归功于其非凡的交流能力已经成为一个被接受的常识。

  So much so, in fact, that few have bothered to test this hypothesis in any systematic way.

  尽管如此,事实上还没有人系统地验证过这一假设。

  Now, a group of researchers led by Andrew King, of the Royal Veterinary College in Britain, has tried to plug this gaping hole.

  如今,一个由“英国皇家兽医学院”的安德鲁.科恩率领的研究小组正尝试填补这块空缺。

  Their first results have just been published in Biology Letters.

  他们的第一个研究成果被发表在了《生物学快报》上。

  Hunter-gatherers’ practice of scouring their surroundings for edible plants is responsible for half of the name anthropologists have bestowed on them.

  采猎者搜集居住区周围可食用植物的行为应了人类学家赋予他们的名字中的一半的内容。

  And for good reason.

  而出于此理由,

  With hunting likely to have been an intermittent diversion, effective foraging would have beencrucial to tiding early humans over to the next woolly mammoth.

  狩猎可能变成了一种间歇性的活动,而有效的搜集活动对于帮助早期人类渡过冰河时期起到了关键作用。

  So Dr King and his colleagues conducted a study to see how, if at all, communication enhances foraging prowess.

  所以,科恩博士及其同事主持了这项研究活动以确认交流是如何促进搜集技巧的。

  They recruited 121 visitors to, rather appropriately, the London Zoo, and split them into 43 groups.

  他们邀请了大约121名游客访问伦敦动物园,并将他们分成了43个小组。

  Each group contained between two and seven people.

  每个小组的成员在2到7人之间,

  Some were single-sex and some mixed.

  且有的为单一性别,有的为男女混合搭配。

  Some were composed of family and friends whereas others brought together complete strangers.

  部分小组由亲戚朋友组成,其他则完全是陌生人。

  Half the groups were allowed to communicate freely.

  在这些小组中,一半可以进行自由交流,

  The rest were told to exchange no verbal signals or gestures of any kind.

  另一半择不允许通过声音信号以及任何肢体动作进行交流。

  Each group was then asked to a room containing six foraging patches—boxes filled with 300 cards, some green and some white—arranged at a distance from a central home base.

  每个小组会被邀请到一个设置了6个搜集区---也就是盛有300张绿色和白色卡片的盒子的房间,这些盒子被放置在离中心基地区域一定距离的地方。

  The green cards were defined as good and the patches varied from 5% to 95% green.

  绿色的卡片为最好,每个搜集区所含绿色卡片的比例由5%到95%不等。

  The foragers could not see inside the boxes and were allowed to pick only one card at a time, through a hand hole, using their dominant hand.

  搜集者看不到盒子的内部情况并且只能惯用手从小孔处一次取出一枚卡片。

  There were no restrictions on which patches to visit, but each time a card was plucked it had to be returned to the home base, irrespective of colour.

  对于访问哪个搜集区并没有设置限制,但是每次卡片在取出之后无论是什么颜色,都必须送回基地区域。

  The goal was to collect as many good cards as possible in an unspecified short period of time (all trials actually lasted ten minutes).

  小组的目标就是在给定的时间段内(事实上每次尝试持续10分钟)搜集尽可能多的绿色卡片。

  As an incentive, members of the best-performing group would receive an animal-adoption prize worth £30 ($47).

  作为鼓励,表现最好的小组将获得价值30英镑(47美元)的动物领养奖励。

  Before the modern-day foragers were let loose, radio-frequency tags, like those used in swipe cards, were wrapped around everyone’s dominant wrist.

  原始社会的搜集者比较分散,所以每个成员惯用手的手腕上都配带了一个与磁卡无线电标签相似的标签。

  All the good forage cards were similarly tagged.

  所有绿色卡片上同样安置了相同的标签。

  These, together with antennae on top of the boxes and in the home base, allowed Dr King totrack the group members’ precise movements.

  这些标签和卡片盒上以及基地区域内安置的天线使得科恩博士可以精准地追踪每个小组的行动。

  That, in turn, made it possible to determine how long it took each group to reach a consensus,defined as concentrating more than 90% of activity around a single patch.

  从而,有可能确定每个小组需要花多长时间来达成共识,即该小组95%的活动都集中在一个搜集区内。

  Unsurprisingly, the groups that were allowed to communicate proved the more effectiveforagers.

  事实证明,那些可以进行交流的小组的搜集者效率相对较高。

  They were much likelier than their non-communicating peers to converge on the greenest patches.

  这也并让人感到不惊讶。与其他不可以进行交流的竞争者相比,他们更有可能汇聚在绿色卡片最多的搜集区。

  What did come as something of a surprise, however, was the nature of the communication that mattered.

  然而让人感到惊讶的却是他们交流的方式。

  The researchers monitored noise levels and hand gestures.

  研究者对他们使用发出的噪音以及手势进行了监测。

  Noise levels served as a proxy for verbal communication; gestures, for the non-verbal sort.

  噪音可以作为有声交流的替代方式,而手势则对应无声交流。

  Dr King found that the only thing which explained the probability of lighting on the best patchwas gesture use, which peaked just before consensus was reached.

  科恩博士发现唯一可以用来解释存在选择最好搜集区的可能性的原因是肢体语言的使用,并且这种肢体语言的使用在共识达成之前就已经达到了顶峰。

  Noise levels remained more or less constant the whole time, suggesting that verbal messages were not as important.

  在整个时间段内,噪音断断续续地得到了持续使用,这显示有声信息并不是那么重要。

  Constant volume may hide the variable importance of what was said.

  不间断的声音可能会影响不同重要性语言的传达。

  So, Dr King plans to repeat the experiment, controlling for the meaning of both utterances and gestures.

  所以,科恩博士计划重复试验,以确认发音和肢体语言的意义。

  Moreover, hand gestures are a relatively local signal.

  况且,手势是一种相对本土化的信号。

  It remains an open question whether they are as crucial to success in groups larger than the half-dozen or so people typical of foraging parties in hunter-gatherer societies. Spoken contributions allow information to be disseminated rapidly to group members far away.

  在采猎者社会群落中,典型的搜集者人数大约占到了一半左右,对于那些人数多于搜集者的群落,手势是对于这些人的成功能否起到同样的关键作用仍然是一个问题。

  That may trump the importance of non-verbal messages as groups grow larger.

  声音可以将信息快速地传播给远处的部落成员。并且随着群落的壮大,语言信息的重要性将超过非语言传递信息的重要性。

  But if gestures convey some vital extra information, people in larger groups may limit theircommunication to nearby co-foragers.

  但是,如果肢体语言可以传达一些额外的重要信息,那么在较大群落中,人们会将交流范围仅限于附近的搜集者。

  This might lead to the emergence of subgroups.

  从而导致此次群落的出现。

  How all this pertains to the “hunter” in “hunter-gatherer” has yet to be investigated.

  关于以上这些是如何影响采猎群落中的狩猎者目前还没有相关调查。

  Getting a project on that past an ethics committee might involve an interesting act ofcommunication in its own right.

  如果绕开道德层面来开展研究项目,其本身就是一种有趣的交流方式。

  Sodium montmorillonite can be freeze-dried into a spongelike material known as an aerogel. Aerogels are famously fragile. But that is because they are mostly empty space. Indeed, they are sometimes nicknamed "solid smoke". This fragility disguises an underlying stiffness. Filling the pores in the aerogel with plastic should remove its fragility and, conversely, the networkof clay molecules in the aerogel will stop the plastic cracking. So the researchers reckoned that if they mixed casein with the clay and added glyceraldehyde (which substitutes for thepoisonous formaldehyde used in the original plastic), they might be able to make something really rather useful.

  蒙脱土可以被冷冻干燥成一种叫做气凝胶的海绵状材料。因为主要是空心,所以气凝胶是一种有名的易碎材料。事实上,它们有时候也被戏称为 "固态烟"。 其实,他们的易碎性掩盖了他们坚强的一面。如果将酪蛋白塑料灌入气凝胶的细孔,那么气凝胶将不再易碎,相反,气凝胶中粘土分子的网状系统同样会防止酪蛋白塑料破裂。所以,研究者们认为如果他们将酪蛋白与粘土混合在一起并添加甘油醛(用来取代原先塑料中所使用的含毒性的甲醛),将形成一种非常有用的材料。

  To test their ideas the team mixed a solution of casein with glyceraldehyde and sodium montmorillonite and vigorously stirred the result to get rid of the bubbles before freezing it at 80°C below zero. Once frozen, the material was placed in a freeze-dryer that removed all the water from it over the course of four days. It was then cured for 24 hours in an oven at 80°C above zero.

  为了验证他们的想法,研究小组将一瓶酪蛋白溶液与甘油醛及蒙脱土进行充分混合以去除气泡并在零下80度下进行冷冻。在冷冻后,将此材料在冷冻干燥机中放上4天以去除所有水分。随后,再将其在80度烤箱中存放24小时。

  The researchers report in Biomacromolecules that their new material matches the stiffness, strength and compressibility of expanded polystyrene, a common packaging material that is thebane of many a rubbish dump. However, unlike polystyrene, it goes away once it has been dumped. An initial experiment suggested that 20% of it vanished within 18 days in a dump-likeenvironment. A comedown, perhaps, from being a queen's brooch. But far more useful.

  研究者们在《生物大分子》杂志上的报告称他们的新材料在硬度,强度以及压缩性上均可以与发泡聚苯乙烯相匹敌,而后者则是一种常见的包装材料同时也是垃圾场中的一大公害。但是,与聚苯乙烯所不同的是,这种新材料一旦被丢弃并会分解。一个早期实验显示,在诸如垃圾场的环境中,此新材料在18天内便可分解20%。也许,它也不再适合做女王的胸针了,但却有更大的用途。

  To test their ideas the team mixed a solution of casein with glyceraldehyde and sodium montmorillonite and vigorously stirred the result to get rid of the bubbles before freezing it at 80°C below zero. Once frozen, the material was placed in a freeze-dryer that removed all the water from it over the course of four days. It was then cured for 24 hours in an oven at 80°C above zero.

  为了验证他们的想法,研究小组将一瓶酪蛋白溶液与甘油醛及蒙脱土进行充分混合以去除气泡并在零下80度下进行冷冻。在冷冻后,将此材料在冷冻干燥机中放上4天以去除所有水分。随后,再将其在80度烤箱中存放24小时。

  The researchers report in Biomacromolecules that their new material matches the stiffness, strength and compressibility of expanded polystyrene, a common packaging material that is thebane of many a rubbish dump. However, unlike polystyrene, it goes away once it has been dumped. An initial experiment suggested that 20% of it vanished within 18 days in a dump-likeenvironment. A comedown, perhaps, from being a queen's brooch. But far more useful.

  研究者们在《生物大分子》杂志上的报告称他们的新材料在硬度,强度以及压缩性上均可以与发泡聚苯乙烯相匹敌,而后者则是一种常见的包装材料同时也是垃圾场中的一大公害。但是,与聚苯乙烯所不同的是,这种新材料一旦被丢弃并会分解。一个早期实验显示,在诸如垃圾场的环境中,此新材料在18天内便可分解20%。也许,它也不再适合做女王的胸针了,但却有更大的用途。

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