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Smart cities, digital cities, virtual cities, connected cities. Are these just trendy buzzwords? Perhaps. But these types of cities are supported by infrastructure that is more than bricks and mortar.

These cities are smart (thoughtful, people-centric), digital (driven by data acquisition, measured, analysed and sometimes exchanged) and virtual (experiential). And, as a result, they are connected, creating more potential interactions between people and their place.

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Bitcoin has been on a volatile ride in recent times, its value rising and falling like a kite caught in variable winds.

Its future will likely be as unpredictable as its past given that it’s a currency propped up by risk-takers, a target of lawmakers and tied to nothing more substantial than an algorithm.

But there are certain variables and concurrent conditions that are signals worth watching when considering Bitcoin’s future.

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As we head toward winter, health professionals and the public are anxious about another influenza season like 2017, when record numbers of Australians were diagnosed with flu.

The flu is usually a mild illness that leaves us out of action for a few days. But for some, especially the elderly and children, the flu can be much more severe. In fact, influenza kills more kids than the feared meningococcal infection.

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This year gets off to a relatively slow start when it comes to seeing the annual major meteor showers. The Quadrantids, one of the big three annual showers, are lost to the vagaries of the full Moon in early January. But the year’s other two most active annual showers – the Perseids (in August) and Geminids (in December) – are set to put on fine displays.

So when and where should you look to have the best chance of seeing nature’s fireworks?

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How truthful are we when it comes to negotiating loans in Australia?

With increasing pressure on the housing market, some of us might be tempted to stretch the truth to secure a mortgage on our dream property - but research shows that this practice can have serious repercussions.

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Australia’s national minimum wage should become a “living wage”, according to a new campaign from the Australian Council of Trade Unions (ACTU). But what exactly is a living wage?

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Image: Yuriy Maksymiv/Shutterstock

“Of all the parasites that affect humanity I do not know of, nor can I imagine, any more distressing than that of Obesity.”

So started William Banting‘s “Letter on Corpulence,” likely the first diet book ever published. Banting, an overweight undertaker, published the book in 1864 to espouse his success after replacing an excessive intake of bread, sugar and potatoes with mostly meat, fish and vegetables.

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As the weekend approaches, people are opening wine bottles in bars and restaurants and homes around the world, ready to kick back and relax.

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The Coalition government announced their new school funding proposal with a flourish, and a Gonski. David Gonski was the architect of the 2011 needs-based funding model that the Labor party hobbled, and which the Liberal party then sent right down the gurgler.

So, for many in the education sector, Gonski’s reappearance was both surprising and comforting. Did this mean we were back to a funding model that was apolitical, sector blind and all about a distribution of money based on need?

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Many of us enjoy a drink or two after a hard day a work. And on weekends, all bets are off! Unfortunately, it's easy to develop an unhealthy drinking habit without fully realising there's a problem. In short, you should start treating alcohol with the respect the drug demands.

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It’s unsurprising that in the lead-up to this year’s federal budget there was a lot of discussion about housing affordability as its centrepiece. Over the past 20 years price-to-income and price-to-rent ratios have doubled. Sydney’s price-to-income ratio is over 12, making it the second-least-affordable city in the world. Melbourne is in fourth place.

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The Australian Bureau of Statistics’ latest figures on internet activity in Australia show a huge jump in the number of people with advertised speeds of greater than 24 Mbps (that’s megabits per second, a measure of data transfer speed).

That trend is significant because it suggests that Australia’s appetite for faster broadband is growing apace, and that the NBN may be helping to drive adoption of higher speed internet.

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Do you hate vegetables? You’re not alone. About 20% of the population are “super-tasters”. Super-tasters have more taste buds than other people and are super sensitive to the bitter compounds found in some food and drinks, even at low concentrations. If you have inherited super-taster genes then cruciferous vegetables (flower vegetables in the cabbage family) like bok choy, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, cauliflower, radish, swede, turnip, and watercress will taste disgusting.

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Most modern fitness trackers are electronic devices you wear on your wrist to track steps, overall physical activity, sedentary behaviour and sleep. They typically work with a smartphone app or website that allow you to track your progress over time using graphs and figures. Advanced fitness trackers can also record heart rate and GPS related outcomes, like your route, speed and distance.

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Every year you set out determined to stick to your New Year’s resolutions. But year after year you fall off track and quickly abandon them. So why are resolutions so hard to keep?