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70天攻克考研英语阅读 DAY68

2006-7-28 01:06  

  DAY68

  Reading comprehension

  Direction: In this part, there are four passages followed by questions or unfinished statements, each with four suggested answers marked A, B, C and D. Choose the one that you think is the correct answer.

  Passage 1“Finagle” is not a word that most people associate with science. One reason why science is so respected these days is that the image of the scientist is of one who dispassionately collects data in an impartial search for truth. In any debateover intelligence, schooling, bias, energythe phrase “science says” usually squashes the opposition.

  But scientists have long acknowledged the existence of a “finagle factor”a tendency by many scientists to give a helpful nudge to the data to produce desired results. The latest example of the finagle factor in action comes from Stephen Jay Gould, a Harvard biologist, who has examined the important 19th century work of Dr. Samuel George Morton.

  Morton was famous in his time not only for amassing a huge collection of skulls but also for analyzing the cranial capacity, or brain size, of the skulls as a measure of intelligence. He concluded that whites had the largest brains, that the brains of Indians and blacks were smaller, and therefore, that whites constitute a superior race.

  Gould went back to Mortons original data and concluded that the results were an example of the finagle at work. “I have reanalyzed Mortons data,” Gould wrote last week in the journal science, “and I find that they are a patchwork of assumption and finagling, controlled, probably unconsciously, by his conventional a priori ranking (his folks on top, slaves on the bottom)。”

  Morton reached his conclusions, Gould found, by leaving out embarrassing data, using incorrect procedures, making simple arithmetical mistakes (always in his favor) and changing his criteria — again, always in favor of his argument.

  Left alone, that finding would not be particularly disturbing. Morton has been thoroughly discredited by now. Scientists do not believe that brain size reflects intelligence, and Mortons brand of raw racism is out of style.

  But Gould goes on to say that Mortons story is only “admittedly egregious example of a common problem in scientific work”。 Some of the leading figures in science are believed to have used the finagle factor.

  One of them is Gregor Mendel, the Bohemian monk whose work is the foundation of modern genetics. The success of Mendels work was based on finding a threetoone ratio in the dominant and recessive characteristics of hybrid plants he was breeding. He found that ratio. But scientists recently have gone back to his data and have found that the results are literally too good to be true. Like Morton,Mendel gave him the benefit of the doubt.

  No one suggested that the scientists were dishonest; it was just that they quite naturally had a strong tendency to find data that would support their beliefs. The same tendency is observable in almost every controversial area of science todaythe fight over race and intelligence, the dispute about generic vs. trade name drugs, the argument about nuclear energy, and so on.

  It is only occasionally that the finagle factor breaks out into pure dishonesty. One example seems to be the research of Cyril Burt, the British scientists whose studies were used to support the belief that intelligence is mostly inherited. It now appears that Burt invented not only a good part of his results but also made up two collaborators whose names appear on his scientific papers.

  The moral that Gould draws from his study of Morton in not that scientists are wicked but that they are just human beings, like the rest of us, and so should be subject to skepticism like the rest of us.“The culprit(犯人) in this tale is a naive belief that pure objectivity can be attained by human beings rooted in cultural traditions of shared beliefand a consequent failure of selfexamination.”Gould said.

  1. This passage is mainly concerned with

  A. The finagle factor in scientific studies

  B. The dishonest behaviors of some famous scientists

  C. The absurdity of Mortons priori ranking

  D. The falsie of some of the data in scientific studies

  2. Which one of the following statements is NOT the reason why Morton was that famous in his time?

  A. He amassed a huge collection of skulls

  B. He analyzed the brain size of the skulls as a measure of intelligence

  C. He testify that whites is a superior race from the perspective of theory

  D. His data is a blending of assumption and finagling

  3. Which one of the following statements is NOT the proof of the finagle factor in Mortons study?

  A. He left out embarrassing data

  B. He used incorrect procedures

  C. He made simple arithmetical and changed his criteria

  D. He made up collaborators whose names appear on his scientific papers

  4. Which one of the following statements can best sum up the purpose of the passage?

  A. Listen to what science has to say but dont accept it blindly

  B. Because of the dishonesty of some scientists, their studies results ought not to be believed

  C. The finagle factor is doing great harm to scientific studies

  D. Sometimes the finagle factor turns out to be pure dishonesty.

  5. The word “squash” in the last sentence in P. 1 is closest in meaning with

  A. result inB. includeC. defeatD. crush

  Passage 2

  In the year 2010, a farmer will be able to buy his own agricultural robot for the price of a new pickup truck. Researchers at Purdue University in West Lafayette, and the Volcani Institute in Bet Dagan, Israel, have devised a robot that can cultivate crops such as lettuce, cabbage, pumpkins and melons.

  A single robot will be able to transplant, cultivate and harvest, says Gaines Miles, a Purdue agricultural engineer and one of the inventors of the prototype.

  “The robots will probably look like tractorpulled trailers with grippers,” Mr. Miles explains, “but for the farmers with only a few acres of vegetables or fruits, theyll become as useful and versatile as a tractor.”

  The advent of intelligent machines capable of selective harvesting has the potential of raising the quality of fresh produce, lowering production costs, and reducing the drudgery(苦工) of manual labor.

  The prototype has been developed to pick melons of any other head crop, because of the importance of these crops in the United States.

  Despite advanced development in automation and electronic sensing, quality sorting of agricultural products is predominantly done by hand. Evaluating and sorting fruits is labor intensive and not very reliable. For example, farmers currently determine the ripeness of a melon with their eyes, based on what they know from experience. Human failure, fatigue, and inadequate experience cause inconsistency in selection. A significant amount of harvested fruit is immature or overripe. This reduces the quality of marketed fruit and results in large losses to the grower.

  To assemble the agricultural robot, Miles and several graduate students began with what looks like skeleton of a large utility trailer. The eyes of the robot are cameras mounted on the trailer frame, which scan the plants below.

  A fan blows across the plants to move their leaves and expose hidden fruit. A computer then analyzes the camera images and looks for round, bright sports that might be melons.

  To help differentiate a melon from other round, flat objects, a sensor projects a laser beam onto the ground.

  When the laser strikes a spherical object at the same time the camera records a bright sport, the computer determines its ripeness through another sensing device. The sensor measures the level of aromatic(芬芳的) gases coming from the melon. The amount of gases is directly related to the fruits ripenessthe more gases, the riper the fruit.

  Finally, the robot picks the ripe melons with its gripper arm. The gripper gently grabs a melon, lifts it, and cuts the vine.

  “It could be outfitted to do even more,” Miles says, “While the grippers are transporting a fruit to the conveyor……they could weigh it and add a bar code that tells the weight, variety and harvest date.”

  Funding for the project comes from the Binatiiona Agricultural Research and Development fund, a US and Israeli fund. The prototype costs around $75,000, but Miles says manufacturers will be able to use lowercost components in the future.

  “Electronic components for an agricultural robot could cost less than $2,000 in the next decade,” he says, “Robots will be priced comparable to pickup truckswell within the reach of farmers with small acreage.”

  1. This passage is mainly about

  A. How can a robot manage to help with the farm work

  B. The potentiality of a robot in future

  C. The advancement of the technology employed on the farm

  D. The falling of the price of a robot that can help with farm work

  2. According to the passage, a single robot will be able to do the following jobs except

  A. TransplantingB. cultivating C. quality sortingD. harvesting

  3. Put the following steps into the right order according to the procedure the robot will follow when harvesting.

  a. A computer analyzes the camera images

  b. The robot picks the ripe ones

  c. A fan blows to move their leaves and expose hidden fruit

  d. The computer determines its ripeness through another sensing device

  e. A sensor projects a beam onto the ground

  A. dabceB. caedb C. acbdeD. decba

  4. All the following statements are true except

  A. Intelligent machines are capable of taking over from the manual labor.

  B. In the next decade, an agricultural robot will be as cheap as a new pickup truck to a farmer.

  C. More and more advanced components will be used, which will bring the price of the robot up greatly.

  D. We can judge fruits ripeness by its gas.

  5. This passage is most likely to be from

  A. The thesis of a college student

  B. The homework of a middle school student

  C. A newspaper about the current condition of science and technology

  D. A handbook teaching how to get rich

  Passage 3

  As a financial writer for Newsday, a suburban New York daily, Susan Harrigan had what once was considered one of the safest jobs around: she sat at a desk and typed. The pain in her arms and hands began without warning, and soon she found herself unable to hit a typewriter key. For more than a year, Harrigan, now 47, couldnt work, cook a meal or even turn a doorknob; she tried strings to her dresser drawers so she could open them with her teeth. “I didnt know I was capable of being in that much pain for so long, ”she says. She was given a variety of diagnoses, but they came down to that three years of typing against deadline on a word processor had caused permanent damage to the muscles, nerves and tendons of her arms. She was, as she contends in a lawsuit filed against the manufacturer of Newsdays wordprocessing equipment, a victim of her keyboard.

  Standard keyboards are as perversely ill designed as a convex teaspoon. They position the hands close together in front of the body, forcing the user to angle his or her forearms in; in turn, the wrists must bend out slightly to line up the fingers on the home keys. This strains the tendons(腱) that run through the wrist and connect the fingers to the muscles of the forearm. The rows of keys are staggered, causing unnecessary reaching to the left and right. The very notion that the hands should be in a palm down attitude for typing may turn out to be wrong; physiologists now believe they should be angled inward to reduce strain.

  Inventors have attacked these problems in a variety of ingenious ways. A Maryland optometrist has designed something called the MIkey, which splits the keyboard down the middle, angling the two halves for a more natural posture. The Kinesis keyboard puts the keys in two curved wells, shoulder distance apart. The most elaborate solution is proposed by two California inventors, whose Vertical keyboard arranges the keys on two vertical planes, so that the hands face each other palmin, accordion fashion. This is not as hard to use as it sounds, but in any case it comes with mirrors so that when youre groping for the control key, at least youre not groping blindly.

  But why not do away with keys together? That is the premise of the DataHand, a prototype machine under development by Industrial Innovations, Inc., of Scottsdale, Ariz., which consists of two padded handrests with individual finger wells, like the holes in bowling balls. Each finger operates five separate switches by pressing down or wiggling forward, backward, left or right. This system can be learned, the company asserts, in as little as 15 hours.

  For that matter, computer technology is almost at the point at which humans car interface with their machines without any physical motion whatsoever. Programs to control computers by speech are starting to show up in some offices, although users still find them somewhat like dictating to a stenographer(速记员) with attentiondeficit disorder and a bad head cold. “It takes totally concentrated attention,” says Harrigan, who returned to work when Newsday provided her with a microphone and software system known as Dragon Dictate. “If I say 'from', it might type 'Georgetown’。” If the person at the next desk sneezes, it might delete whole paragraphs. Although the manufacturer claims the system has a speed of up to 40 words per minute, Harrigan still run it fast enough to meet daily deadlines. She now works on longerdeadline pieces. But without it, she couldnt work at all.

  1. The passage is mainly about

  A. The disadvantages of the keyboards of the past

  B. The improvements made on the basis of the keyboards of the past

  C. The characteristics of the present keyboards

  D. The past keyboards causing an epidemic of injuries among office workers

  2. According to the passage, what does the author mean by saying “users still find them somewhat like dictating to a stenographer with attentiondeficit disorder and a bad head cold”?

  A. The users are reluctant to use such programs as controlling computers by speech

  B. Operating of the programs is very attentiondemanding

  C. There are always something wrong with the programs

  D. Users of the programs are inclined to get ill

  3. Which statement is correct about Industrial Innovations, Inc.?

  A. It has designed successfully the keyboard with keys together.

  B. It considers the keyboard should be done away with keys together.

  C. Its keyboard arranges the keys on two vertical planes, so that youre not groping blindly.

  D. Its keyboard consists of two padded handrests with individual finger.

  4. Which one of the following statements is NOT true according to the passage?

  A. The notion is wrong that the hands should be in a palmdown attitude.

  B. There are still limitations concerning the existent programs that are speechcontrolled.

  C. Its asserted that the system under which the DataHand is used can be learned in 15 hours.

  D. Harrigan returned to her work with the help of a new system.

  5. The tone of the whole passage is

  A. Subjective B. NegativeC. Praising D. Objective

  Passage 4

  B. Reich, the labor secretary under President Bill Clinton. “But if job growth is anemic, he is anemic, he is in trouble.”

  If job gains dont continue, Mr. Bush could be stuck. By pushing three tax cuts through Congress in three years, he has already taken his best shot at stimulating job creation, and the deficit will make it hard for him to push through further reductions.

  Given how little he can affect employment between now and Election Day, Mr. Bush finds himself among those presidents who have been faced with the challenge of putting the best face on the economy without appearing detached from the angst and, in some cases, the suffering it has generated among workers.

  Some White Houses in the past have succumbed to the temptation to make unrealistically optimistic forecast, as the Reagan administration did early in its first term. Others have allowed the opposing party to define the economy in simple, negative terms, as Mr. Bushs father allowed Mr. Clinton to do in 1992.

  The Bush administration is determined not to fall into those traps. Almost every day, the president says progress is being made but that he will not be satisfied until every American who wants a job can get one. “You have to be realistic about present circumstances,” said Michael Boskin, chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers in the first Bush administration. “You also ought to be optimistic about the future, about our strong economic system and its ability to adapt. And youve got to talk about what youve done to make things better. President Bush has done a pretty good job of that.”

  Assuming the economy remains in a gray area between strong employment growth and a renewed downturn, Mr. Bushs advisers say he intends to stick with the message he has been trying out on the stump for the last few months: by cutting taxes he took decisive action, in the face of an array of negative forces beyond his control, to counter a downturn that was getting under way before he even took office.

  “Job growth is an issue, but there are two things President Bush will benefit from,” said Representative Rob Portman, an Ohio Republican of the economy, “and policy from here in Washington. Second, there is a realization that he has pushed hard to do something about it.”

  Mr. Bushs aides are confident the economy will break their way. If not, the results of the 2002 midterm elections, when Republicans picked up seats despite the weak economy, suggest that the political pain inflicted on Mr. Bush might not be as dire as that suffered by his father. But Republicans arent taking any chances.

  “Its still jobs, jobs, jobs,” Rick Santorum of Pennsylvania wrote this month to his Republican colleagues in the Senate. Setting out the Partys communications strategy, Mr. Santorum wrote: “We must talk about our commitment to create and protect jobs. Every one of us needs to drive the message that 57,000 new jobs were created last month as a result of the tax cuts we passed to stimulate the economy.”

  Intent in takingor at least being seen to takefurther action, Mr. Bush has repackaged his existing domestic proposals, many of which are stalled on Capitol Hill, as efforts to create jobs. At nearly every public appearance, he suggest that encouraging more oil and gas drilling in the United States, limiting lawsuit awards and providing tax incentives to businesses for providing health insurance will help spur more employment.

  None of those ideas, if enacted, would be likely to bring quick results, if they helped at all. But in this case, perception may be the thing that matters most.

  1. The word “anemic” in the first paragraph means

  A. weak B. sick C. slow D. rapid

  2. There are the aims of the Bush administration following except

  A. Make another further tax reduction

  B. Avoiding being prone to make Utopian prediction of economy prospects.

  C. Prevent the Democratic defining the economy in simple, negative terms.

  D. Win the next presidential term in Novembers election.

  3. The sentence “Given how little he can effect employment between now and election” implies that

  A. During the economic recession, the Bush administration made little effect on the employment.

  B. The period between the peak unemployment rate in a presidential term and the November vote for a second time is vital for the President.

  C. The reelection of presidents may rely on a substantial degree on the job growth.

  D. There is no chance for Mr. Bush to recover from the bad economy.

  4. We can conclude from the passage that

  A. Reagan administration yielded to the attraction of making unrealistic forecast through his presidential term.

  B. President George H.W. Bush saw eyetoeye with the following president.

  C. The former president created a strong employment growth.

  D. President Bush went all out to the job creation with his four tax reductions.

  5. In the last paragraph, the author concurs in that

  A. All the efforts made by Mr. Bush to create jobs are promising to return prosperity soon.

  B. The Bushs domestic proposals are going to be put into practice.

  C. All the further actions are available to spur more employments.

  D. Changing perception is basic to the economy recovery.

  Keys and notes for the passage reading:

  Passage 1

  科学家们需要寻找数据来支持自己的理论,但一些人却捏造数据。科学家也是人,也应同样受到怀疑。

  1. Morton was famous in his time not only for amassing a huge collection of skulls but also for analyzing the cranial capacity, or brain size, of the skulls as a measure of intelligence. 莫顿在他那个时代名气很大,不仅是由于他收集了大量头盖骨,还由于他分析了头盖骨的脑容量(或叫脑体积),以作为衡量智力的标准。

  2. The culprit in this tale is a naive belief that pure objectivity can be attained by human beings rooted in cultural traditions of shared beliefand a consequent failure of selfexamination. 这个故事中的罪犯是一种天真的想法,认为扎根于具有共同信念的文化传统里的人就能够做到绝对客观,因此就不去进行自我检查。

  1. 「A」BCD过于片面,不能完全概括全篇。

  2. 「D」见文章第三段,D并不是他出名的原因。

  3. 「D」D是Cyril Burt的所作所为。

  4. 「A」BCD过于片面。

  5. 「C」根据上下文可推断squash是defeat的意思

  Passage 2

  能够进行选择性收获的智力机器的问世将使农事更有成效,它的成本也会降低以适应农民的购买力。

  A single robot will be able to transplant, cultivate and harvest, says Gaines Miles, a Purdue agricultural engineer and one of the inventors of the prototype. 普尔杜大学农业工程师,农用机器人样机的发明人盖恩斯。迈尔斯说,一个机器人就能担负起移栽培植和收获的任务。

  1. 「A」BCD都是正确的,但是不能作为文章大意。

  2. 「C」见第一段末尾和第五段开头,quality sorting仍主要由人力完成。

  3. 「B」见7.8.9.10段。

  4. 「C」见第12段Miles says manufacturers will be able to use lowercost components in the future

  5. 「C」根据全文风格可得出答案为C

  Passage 3

  在办公室人员中流行的一种职业性损伤促使科研人员开始探索更合理的键盘。

  1. That is the premise of the DataHand, a prototype machine under development by Industrial Innovations, Inc., of Scottsdale, Ariz., which consists of two padded handrests with individual finger wells, like the holes in bowling balls.亚利桑那州斯可茨代尔工业革新公司正在开发的一种称为数据手的样机就是以此为前提的。它由两个软垫式扶手组成,上面布有各个指孔,就像保龄球上的小孔。

  2. Programs to control computers by speech are starting to show up in some offices, although users still find them somewhat like dictating to a stenographer with attentiondeficit disorder and a bad head cold. 用语言操纵计算机的程序正开始在一些办公室出现,不过使用者仍然感到他们有点像是在对一个患注意力缺失紊乱症或重感冒的速记员进行口述那样。

  1. 「B」纵观全文,可得出文章的重点在于介绍旧键盘的缺陷以及在它基础上做出的改进。

  2. 「C」这句话意思见难句解析2,它的目的在于说明采用新技术仍然有不足之处。

  3. 「B」见第4段第1、2句。

  4. 「A」见第二段末尾,由may可看出只是猜测,并不确信。

  5. 「D」由语言风格可看出作者的态度很客观。

  Passage 4

  提高就业率是布什走出经济不景气赢得2004的连任的法宝。布什政府在提高就业率上采取了一系列措施,也推动了经济的恢复。

  The Bush administration is determined not to fall into those traps. “traps”在这里指的是里根和老布什政府的一些失误,这正是布什政府所要避免的。在理解时要参照前文,不要误解前面所提到的失误是其政府目标。

  1. 「C」全文讲的是经济不景气时期布什政府为提高就业率所采取的措施,因此这里讲的是经济增长缓慢的问题。

  2. 「A」第二段最后一句讲到再减税不可能,A错。

  3. 「C」A,D项与文章意思不一致,B项内容文章未涉及。

  4. 「C」从第四段可以得出 A B两项与原文有出入,第二段讲布什总统只进行了三次减税,D也是错的。

  5. 「D」ABC三项指既成事实,与原文不符。

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