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Computers could learn like humans
You might think the technology we have today is incredibly smart and is improving greatly each year, but some scientists don’

t agree. Computers can do many things such as search for information at great speeds, recognize its owner’s fingerprints and open a whole new seemingly impossible gaming world. However, scientists believe this is only the beginning. They want to build a computer capable of human-like The 2004 US film I, Robot talks about the learning. relationship between humans and robots. And recently, they had a breakthrough. The latest Science magazine introduced a newly developed computer program that allows computers to not only work with numbers, but also in a wide range of different languages. At the moment, for computers to learn something new, thousands of images and bits of data (数据) need to be inputted (输入). But for humans, a child only needs one or two images to learn something new. This new program would mean computers would, like children, only need one or two images to understand something. The computers would be able to see the handwritten letters, recognize them and recreate them. Ruslan Salakhutdinov, professor of computer science at the University of Toronto said: “It has been very difficult to build machines that need as little data as humans when learning something new.” This improvement could bring a range of new opportunities. If computers are capable of human-like thoughts, then it will greatly reduce the amount of time it takes for new developments. However, some think this is one step in a dangerous direction. Is it safe to make computers who can think like humans? If we succeed in making computers as capable as humans, what would stop the computers from taking over humanity (人类) like in the film I, Robot (2004) with Will Smith? 1. Today computers can do the following EXCEPT _____. A. search for information fast B. recognize its owner’s fingerprints D. learn things exactly as humans do C. create an almost impossible gaming world 2. What does the underlined word “breakthrough” in Paragraph 2 mean? A. achievement B. discovery C. experiment D. difficulty 3. With the new computer program, computers can _____. a. work in many different languages b. understand something with only one or two images or data c. do better than children can d. see the handwritten letters and recreate them A. ab B. bc C. ad D. cd 4. What does the last paragraph talk about? A. The advantages and disadvantages of the new program. B. The developments of computer programs. C. The relationship between computers and humans. D. Introduction of the film I, Robot (2004).
- 1 - 九年级英语课外阅读新文章(2016.01)

One kind act causes many
My 9-year-old daughter and I were flying from our home in Charlotte, North Carolina, to spend a week with my husband in Miami, Florida. Mike had been working in Florida for five months. Kallie missed her dad terribly. The plane was full. I had noticed a group of Boy Scouts at the gate and said to my daughter that if anything happened, we would be OK with all those scouts on our flight! Because we did not get our boarding passes until we arrived at the gate, Kallie and I could not get seats together. That wasn’t such a big deal, except that Kallie was nervous about the trip and had counted on me reading to her the whole way. When the passengers in my row boarded the plane, I asked if they would change places with Kallie or me. They refused, saying they wanted to stay in their own seats. At the same time, a mother and her two children several rows ahead of us also met the same problem. The mother could hold her baby, but her 6-year-old son had to sit with strangers. Yet nobody offered to help her. Suddenly, the scout leader stood up and said: “Ma’am, I think we can help you.” He then spent five minutes rearranging his group so there was space available for the family. And then the mother was much more relaxed. Amazingly, the man sitting next to the scout leader, turned to me and asked: “Would you and your daughter like our seats?” We changed seats and continued on our trip, very happy to be together. Would that man have offered us his seat if the scouts hadn’t done so for the mom and her children? I don’t know. But I do know that kindness is good, and good deeds cause more good deeds! 1. What problem did the writer meet after boarding the plane? A. She didn’t get her boarding pass on time. B. She and her daughter couldn’t sit together. C. There wasn’t an empty seat left for her. D. Kallie was too excited about the trip. 2. The correct order of the following events is ________. a. The scout leader rearranged his group’s seats. b. A man offered his seat to the writer. c. The mom and her kids sat together. d. The writer and her daughter got seats next to each other. A. abcd B. acbd C. bdac D. cabd 3. What is the writer’s main purpose for writing this story? A. To show that good deeds lead to more good deeds. B. To criticize the coldness of some of the passengers. C. To compare two different kinds of people. D. To tell us that we should put children first.
- 2 - 九年级英语课外阅读新文章(2016.01)

Learning to program
What do you do with your phone and computer, just play with them? Well now, the new trend is to learn how to program (编程) them. From Dec 7 to 13, more than 100 million students across 180 countries took part in computer coding (编程) activities during the Computer Science Education Week. The non-profit (非营利的) group Code.org created this week to give students a chance to learn about coding in a fun way. Coding is not as difficult as people usually think, according to Code.org CEO Hadi Partovi. All programming starts out simple, he said, and there are even programming games for kids. On Dec 10, US President Barack Obama signed a law that made computer science a subject that’s just as important as others like math and history. That means schools may get money from the federal government (联邦政府) to develop computer courses. According to Obama, coding is “the tool and technology that will change the way we do just about everything”. Professor Chen Yue from Zhejiang University agrees on the importance of coding. “Learning how to code doesn’t mean everyone will become a programmer,” said Chen. “But in the future, computer technology will be around every corner in people’s lives and workplaces. Knowing how computers work will make it much easier.” For example, a sociology scholar (社会学学者) also needs a computer program to help predict things like population trends, Chen said. Chen also noted that in China, not many middle schools have real coding courses right now. According to her, people think it will put extra pressure on students when they already have so many subjects to learn. The good thing is that there are more and more coding courses offered online or in person by different organizations. Chen also has an online coding course. 完成下列表格中的内容,每空一词。 The importance of coding * The Computer Science Education Week (from Dec 7 to 13): more than 100 million students across 1. ________ ________ took part. * Aim: to give students a chance to learn about 2. ________ in a fun way. * Activities: simple programming; programming games for kids. US President Obama signed a law that made 3. ________ ________ an important subject. He thinks that coding is 4. “________ ________ ________ ________ that will change the way we do just about everything”. * Professor Chenyue from Zhejiang University: computer technology will be around every corner in people’s lives and at work in the future. * Not many 5. ________ ________ have real coding courses, but there are more and more coding courses offered online or in reality.
- 3 - 九年级英语课外阅读新文章(2016.01)


The US


Listening practice
听两遍,选择正确答案。 1. The speaker’s family lived in ________ before she was 12 years old. A. the city A. half an hour A. many friends A. 12 A. It was a happy time. B. a town B. one hour B. her parents B. 20 B. It was boring. C. the mountains C. one and a half hours C. nobody C. 40 C. It was poor. 2. The speaker spent ________ walking to school every morning. 3. She could meet ________ on the way to school. 4. There were about ________ students in her class. 5. What does the speaker think about her life before?

Cloze test
As soon as he finished his homework, Eric jumped onto his bicycle and direction of the beach. While he was riding along, he see it from the road. Then he ran down onto the sand. Though it was only 4:00 in the afternoon, the sky was already getting hurried along the beach to the rock. It was the best Before Eric reached the rock, he 6 5 to see the whales. 7 them!” 4 . Eric frowned (皱 眉). If it rained, he wouldn’t be able to see the whales because they would stay in deeper water. He a drop of water on his head. “Oh no!” he thought. 2 would see them today. After he got to the beach, Eric put his bicycle 3 1 off in the about the whales (鲸). He hoped he a tree, so no one could

“Now the whales will stay in the deep water, and I won’t be able to

But just then he saw a large shape on the beach. It was a young whale! The whale had come too close to shore and got stuck (搁浅) on the beach! At first the whale didn’t move at all, and Eric thought it was 8 . Then he saw its tail move weakly. Eric turned and ran in the rain as fast as he 9 10 . C. got C. learned C. on C. dark C. weather C. put C. save C. dead C. help C. go D. rode D. asked D. behind D. high D. place D. saw D. feed D. upset D. care D. swim ! If they didn’t get the whale back in the water soon, could back to his bicycle. He had to get it would die and Eric couldn’t let that 1. A. walked 2. A. talked 3. A. before 4. A. bright 5. A. time 6. A. felt 7. A. catch 8. A. alive 9. A. water 10. A. happen B. fell B. thought B. over B. far B. season B. drank B. watch B. lovely B. medicine B. live

- 4 - 九年级英语课外阅读新文章(2016.01)


Computers could learn like humans
1-4. DACA

One kind act causes many
1-3. BBA

Learning to program
1. 180 countries 4. the tool and technology 2. coding 5. middle schools 3. computer science

Listening practice
听力原文:Before I was 12 years old, my family lived in the mountains. Our house was far from my school. It took me one hour to walk to school every morning. It was a happy time for me because I could meet friends on the way, and we would go to school together. There were just six classes in my school, and only about 20 students in each class. We spent most of our time playing. The mountains were our playground. I still remember the different kinds of flowers, the songs of different birds. and the colors of trees in different seasons. Everything was so interesting and beautiful. Even now I still miss my life in the mountains. 1-5. CBABA

Cloze test
1-5. DBDCD 6-10. ABCCA

- 5 - 九年级英语课外阅读新文章(2016.01)

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