Goaltide Daily Current Affairs 2024

Jan 04, 2024

Current Affair 1:
IISc study on how logging and climate change impact montane birds



Researchers at the Indian Institute of Science (IISc.) in Bengaluru have found that logging and climate change pose a threat to montane birds. They studied the effects of forest logging and climate change on bird communities in tropical mountains, by examining over 10 years of data.

Tropical montane forests are unique ecosystems that can start at about 150-200 metre elevation, and reach up to 3,500 metres high up on mountains around the world. They are critical centres of biodiversity.


The team found that many bird species have started shifting to higher elevations due to rising temperatures.

Logged forests have higher average temperatures and lower humidity than primary forests, thus hastening the transition.

Additionally, birds that are smaller in size seem to colonise these logged forests better because they can tolerate higher temperatures while the density of larger bird species appears to be increasing in the primary forests.

Current Affair 2:
Microsoft launches AI Odyssey for India



Microsoft announced the launch of an initiative that aims to skill 100,000 developers in India in the latest AI technologies and tools.

The program offers comprehensive learning experience that helps developers acquire and demonstrate the relevant skills needed to execute critical projects using AI technologies that align with business goals and outcomes.

With AI revolutionizing the way we work and live, India needs a skilled workforce that can use AI to solve complex problems and create value. Through programs like AI Odyssey, Microsoft is offering opportunities for developers to build solutions for India’s growth and showcase their talent to solve real-world problems.

The program has two levels that participants need to complete by January 31, 2024.

  1. The first level of the program educates participants on how to use Azure AI services to create and deploy AI solutions for different scenarios. This will give them access to useful resources, code samples, and guides to master practical AI skills.
  2. The second level of the program challenges participants to prove their AI skills by completing an online assessment with interactive lab tasks that earns them Microsoft Applied Skills credentials, a new verifiable credential that validates their ability to solve real world problems with AI.

Current Affair 3:
What is radiocarbon dating?



Dating’ is a method by which the age of an object can be determined. Radiocarbon dating refers to a method that does this using radiocarbon, a name for the isotope carbon-14.

Carbon-14 is created in the earth’s atmosphere when cosmic rays – energetic streams of charged particles coming from sources in outer space – slam into the atoms of the gases and release neutrons. When these neutrons interact with the nitrogen-14 nitrogen isotope, they can produce carbon-14. Since cosmic rays are ceaselessly passing through the earth’s atmosphere, carbon-14 is created constantly there.

Carbon-14 readily combines with atmospheric oxygen to form radioactive carbon dioxide. This compound then enters the bodies of plants (via photosynthesis), animals (when they consume plants), and other biomass through the carbon cycle.

How does radiocarbon dating work?

When an organic entity – like the human body – is ‘alive’, it constantly exchanges carbon with its surroundings by breathing, consuming food, defecating, shedding skin, etc. Through these activities, carbon-14 is both lost from the body as well as replenished, so its concentration in the body is nearly constant and in equilibrium with its surroundings.

When these individual dies, the body no longer performs these activities and the concentration of carbon-14 in the body begins to dwindle through radioactive decay. The more time passes, the more the amount of carbon-14 lost, and the less there will remain. This decay rate can be predicted from theory.

Radiocarbon dating dates an object by measuring the amount of carbon-14 left, which scientists and/or computers can use to calculate how long ago the body expired.

Since carbon-14 decays with a half-life of around 5,730 years, its presence can be used to date samples that are around 60 millennia old. Beyond that, the concentration of carbon-14 in the sample would have declined by more than 99%.

How does modern radiocarbon dating work?

The modern radiocarbon dating setup is more sophisticated, of course. For example, one of the most sensitive dating setups uses accelerator mass spectrometry (AMS), which can work with organic samples as little as 50 mg.

Current Affair 4:
‘Work4Food’, by IIT Delhi



Fairwork Project is a global initiative that seeks to improve the working conditions of digital platform workers, including food delivery riders. The project assesses and ranks platform companies based on their adherence to fair labor practices to promote better standards in the gig economy.

What was the problem?

Fairwork India’s 2023 report has shed light on a critical issue in the food delivery industry in India, where none of the major food delivery platforms were found to provide hourly local minimum wages to their delivery workers after accounting for fuel and other expenses.

The gig economy model has been a driving force in the food delivery industry, making it difficult for the delivery workers to secure their rightful earnings.

What has IIT developed?

However, IIT Delhi's research team comprising have developed a unique approach, which they name ‘Work4Food’, that not only guarantees government-mandated minimum wage compensations for delivery workers but also seeks to minimize platform costs while ensuring customer satisfaction. Their proposal was also presented at the prestigious International Joint Conference on Artificial Intelligence.

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