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  • The Know Daily - Tuesday 14 May 2024

The Know Daily - Tuesday 14 May 2024

🚗 New drivers could face stricter rules on UK roads, a breakthrough for cardiovascular health + ChatGPT is more “emotional” than before.

Read in 5m 48s Listening to Nemo 

🔬 A breakthrough for cardiovascular health

🚗 A bill to introduce graduated driving licences 

🤖 A more “human-like” version of ChatGPT

We love an innovative green initiative, and the Belgian city of Antwerp has certainly branched out with this one: to give away 2,000 free trees to local residents! It’s hoped the project will help keep the city cool over summer, improve air quality and create more habitats for birds and other animals. 

🔬 Medical breakthrough

Semaglutide - the active ingredient in Wegovy and Ozempic - could benefit the cardiovascular health of millions of adults across the UK, a new study has found.

What are the benefits, exactly?
Researchers at University College London looked at study participants taking semaglutide, a prescription drug that suppresses appetite and is sold under brand names such as Ozempic and Wegovy. They found that these patients had a 20% lower risk of heart attack, stroke, or death due to cardiovascular disease, compared with patients who were not on the medication.

Why is this the case?
Researchers found that semaglutide brought cardiovascular benefits regardless of the amount of weight lost. The study’s lead author Prof John Deanfield said this could be down to the drug’s positive impacts on blood sugar, blood pressure or inflammation, as well as direct effects on the heart muscle and blood vessels.

Why does this matter?
Deanfield - who described semaglutide as a “gamechanger” - likened the study’s findings to when cholesterol-lowering statins were introduced in the 1990s. “We now have a class of drugs that could equally transform many chronic diseases of ageing,” said Deanfield, adding that millions across the UK could be routinely prescribed the medication in the next few years.

🙋‍♀️ TRIVIA TIME

What is the most common surname in the UK?

A) Smith
B) Jones
C) Brown

Scroll to the very bottom for the answer.

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🚗 Driving change

Could new drivers soon face tougher rules on UK roads? Here’s what you need to know about a new bill introduced before Parliament last week.

What does the bill propose?
The bill, introduced by Labour MP Kim Leadbeater, is looking to introduce graduated driving licences (or GDLs). This would see newly-qualified drivers face a number of restrictions for the first six months after passing their test, including a zero-alcohol limit, controls on the number of passengers in the car and a clampdown on night-time driving, said Yahoo News.

What’s behind it?
Leadbeater told Parliament that the bill “is not about taking away young people’s freedom or fun” but rather about saving lives. Proponents of GDLs argue they help reduce the risks surrounding inexperienced drivers, with a number of motoring associations including the AA and the RAC supporting their introduction.

While previous attempts to introduce GDLs into law have failed, this latest measure has cross-party support, said financial website This is Money.

How has the proposal gone down?
Over on social media, the reception has been decidedly frosty. A number of X users accused MPs of unfairly singling out young people and argued the measures would be highly impractical.

Many users also appeared to suggest that GDLs would only be handed out to under 25s. However, Leadbeater’s bill seeks to impose restrictions “on all newly-qualified drivers”, said the BBC, “with exemptions for work, medical and emergency reasons”. The bill will have its second reading on 17 May.

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🤖 Smooth talker: The latest version of ChatGPT is here - and it’s “more emotional and human-like” than before. 

🗳️ Rule change: MPs arrested on suspicion of a serious offence face being barred from parliament, under plans narrowly approved on Monday night.

💼 Job market: The UK’s unemployment rate is at its highest for almost a year, as more people compete for the same roles. 

🇺🇸 Trump trial: Former ‘fixer’ Michael Cohen told jurors on Monday that the former US president personally approved a hush money payment to Stormy Daniels. 

📽️ In the spotlight: The 2024 Cannes Film Festival kicks off today - but events off screen are “likely to be as dramatic as the storylines”. Here’s what to look out for.

Smart Works - the UK charity that helps unemployed women with clothing and coaching to get the job.

Come for: A brilliant nonprofit that’s supported 30,000 women over the past decade - with almost 70% getting the job within a month of their appointment.

Stay for: Donating your workwear and accessories next time you have a wardrobe clearout (it’s spring cleaning time!).

 

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Trivia answer: A) Smith is the most common surname in the UK…and in the US, and Canada, and Australia, and New Zealand. This map of the most common last names around the world is pretty cool.

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