CAT 2017 Shift-2 - VARC

Instructions

The passage below is accompanied by a set of six questions. Choose the best answer to each question.


Creativity is at once our most precious resource and our most inexhaustible one. As anyone who has ever spent any time with children knows, every single human being is born creative; every human being is innately endowed with the ability to combine and recombine data, perceptions, materials and ideas, and devise new ways of thinking and doing. What fosters creativity? More than anything else: the presence of other creative people. The big myth is that creativity is the province of great individual geniuses. In. fact creativity is a social process. Our biggest creative breakthroughs come when people learn from, compete with, and collaborate with other people.


Cities are the true fonts of creativity... With their diverse populations, dense social networks, and public spaces where people can meet spontaneously and serendipitously, they spark and catalyze new ideas. With their infrastructure for finance, organization and trade, they allow those ideas to be swiftly actualized.


As for what staunches creativity, that's easy, if ironic. It's the very institutions that we build to manage, exploit and perpetuate the fruits of creativity ‚ÄĒ our big bureaucracies, and sad to say, too many of our schools. Creativity is disruptive; schools and organizations are regimented, standardized and stultifying.


The education expert Sir Ken Robinson points to a 1968 study reporting on a group of 1,600 children who were tested over time for their ability to think in out-of-the-box ways. When the children were between 3 and 5 years old, 98 percent achieved positive scores. When they were 8 to 10, only 32 percent passed the same test, and only 10 percent at 13 to 15. When 280,000 25-year-olds took the test, just 2 percent passed. By the time we are adults, our creativity has been wrung out of us.


I once asked the great urbanist Jane Jacobs what makes some places more creative than others. She said, essentially, that the question was an easy one. All cities, she said, were filled with creative people; that's our default state as people. But some cities had more than their shares of leaders, people and institutions that blocked out that creativity. She called them "squelchers."


Creativity (or the lack of it) follows the same general contours of the great socio-economic divide ‚ÄĒ our rising inequality ‚ÄĒ that plagues us. According to my own estimates, roughly a third of us across the United States, and perhaps as much as half of us in our most creative cities ‚ÄĒ are able to do work which engages our creative faculties to some extent, whether as artists, musicians, writers, techies, innovators, entrepreneurs, doctors, lawyers, journalists or educators ‚ÄĒ those of us who work with our minds. That leaves a group that I term "the other 66 percent," who toil in low-wage rote and rotten jobs ‚ÄĒ if they have jobs at all ‚ÄĒ in which their creativity is subjugated, ignored or wasted.


Creativity itself is not in danger. It's flourishing is all around us ‚ÄĒ in science and technology, arts and culture, in our rapidly revitalizing cities. But we still have a long way to go if we want to build a truly creative society that supports and rewards the creativity of each and every one of us.

Question 1

In the author's view, cities promote human creativity for all the following reasons EXCEPT that they

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Question 2

The author uses 'ironic' in the third paragraph to point out that

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Question 3

The central idea of this passage is that

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Question 4

Jane Jacobs believed that cities that are more creative

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Question 5

The 1968 study is used here to show that

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Question 6

The author's conclusions about the most 'creative cities' in the US (paragraph 6) are based on his assumption that

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Instructions

The passage below is accompanied by a set of six questions. Choose the best answer to each question.


During the frigid season... it's often necessary to nestle under a blanket to try to stay warm. The temperature difference between the blanket and the air outside is so palpable that we often have trouble leaving our warm refuge. Many plants and animals similarly hunker down, relying on snow cover for safety from winter's harsh conditions. The small area between the snowpack and the ground, called the subnivium... might be the most important ecosystem that you have never heard of.

The subnivium is so well-insulated and stable that its temperature holds steady at around 32 degree Fahrenheit (0 degree Celsius). Although that might still sound cold, a constant temperature of 32 degree Fahrenheit can often be 30 to 40 degrees warmer than the air temperature during the peak of winter. Because of this large temperature difference, a wide variety of species...depend on the subnivium for winter protection.

For many organisms living in temperate and Arctic regions, the difference between being under the snow or outside it is a matter of life and death. Consequently, disruptions to the subnivium brought about by climate change will affect everything from population dynamics to nutrient cycling through the ecosystem.

The formation and stability of the subnivium requires more than a few flurries. Winter ecologists have suggested that eight inches of snow is necessary to develop a stable layer of insulation. Depth is not the only factor, however. More accurately, the stability of the subnivium depends on the interaction between snow depth and snow density. Imagine being under a stack of blankets that are all flattened and pressed together. When compressed, the blankets essentially form one compacted layer. In contrast, when they are lightly placed on top of one another, their insulative capacity increases because the air pockets between them trap heat. Greater depths of low-density snow are therefore better at insulating the ground.

Both depth and density of snow are sensitive to temperature. Scientists are now beginning to explore how climate change will affect the subnivium, as well as the species that depend on it. At first glance, warmer winters seem beneficial for species that have difficulty surviving subzero temperatures; however, as with most ecological phenomena, the consequences are not so straightforward. Research has shown that the snow season (the period when snow is more likely than rain) has become shorter since l970. When rain falls on snow, it increases the density of the snow and reduces its insulative capacity. Therefore, even though winters are expected to become warmer overall from future climate change, the subnivium will tend to become colder and more variable with less protection from the above-ground temperatures.

The effects of a colder subnivium are complex... For example, shrubs such as crowberry and alpine azalea that grow along the forest floor tend to block the wind and so retain higher depths of snow around them. This captured snow helps to keep soils insulated and in turn increases plant decomposition and nutrient release. In field experiments, researchers removed a portion. of the snow cover to investigate the importance of the subnivium's insulation. They found that soil frost in the snow-free area resulted in damage to plant roots and sometimes even the death of the plant.

Question 7

The purpose of this passage is to

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Question 8

All of the following statements are true EXCEPT

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Question 9

Based on this extract, the author would support which one of the following actions?

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Question 10

In paragraph 6, the author provides the examples of crowberry and alpine azalea to demonstrate that

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Question 11

Which one of the following statements can be inferred from the passage?

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Question 12

In paragraph 1, the author uses blankets as a device to

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Instructions

The passage below is accompanied by a set of six questions. Choose the best answer to each question.

The end of the age of the internal combustion engine is in sight. There are small signs everywhere: the shift to hybrid vehicles is already under way among manufacturers. Volvo has announced it will make no purely petrol-engined cars after 2019...and Tesla has just started selling its first electric car aimed squarely at the middle classes: the Tesla 3 sells for $35,000 in the US, and 400,000 people have put down a small, refundable deposit towards one. Several thousand have already taken delivery, and the company hopes to sell half a million more next year. This is a remarkable figure for a machine with a fairly short range and a very limited number of specialised charging stations.


Some of it reflects the remarkable abilities of Elon Musk, the company's founder, as a salesman, engineer, and a man able to get the most out his factory workers and the governments he deals with...Mr Musk is selling a dream that the world wants to believe in. This last may be the most important factor in the story. The private car is...a device of immense practical help and economic significance, but at the same time a theatre for myths of unattainable self-fulfilment. The one thing you will never see in a car advertisement is traffic, even though that is the element in which drivers spend their lives. Every single driver in a traffic jam is trying to escape from it, yet it is the inevitable consequence of mass car ownership.


The sleek and swift electric car is at one level merely the most contemporary fantasy of autonomy and power. But it might also disrupt our exterior landscapes nearly as much as the fossil fuel-engined car did in the last century. Electrical cars would of course pollute far less than fossil fuel-driven ones; instead of oil reserves, the rarest materials for batteries would make undeserving despots and their dynasties fantastically rich. Petrol stations would disappear. The air in cities would once more be breathable and their streets as quiet as those of Venice. This isn't an unmixed good. Cars that were as silent as bicycles would still be as dangerous as they are now to anyone they hit without audible warning.


The dream goes further than that. The electric cars of the future will be so thoroughly equipped with sensors and reaction mechanisms that they will never hit anyone. Just as brakes don't let you skid today, the steering wheel of tomorrow will swerve you away from danger before you have even noticed it...


This is where the fantasy of autonomy comes full circle. The logical outcome of cars which need no driver is that they will become cars which need no owner either. Instead, they will work as taxis do, summoned at will but only for the journeys we actually need. This the future towards which Uber...is working. The ultimate development of the private car will be to reinvent public transport. Traffic jams will be abolished only when the private car becomes a public utility. What then will happen to our fantasies of independence? We' ll all have to take to electrically powered bicycles.

Question 13

Which of the following statements best reflects the author's argument?

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Question 14

The author points out all of the following about electric cars EXCEPT

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Question 15

According to the author, the main reason for Tesla's remarkable sales is that

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Question 16

The author comes to the conclusion that

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Question 17

In paragraphs 5 and 6, the author provides the example of Uber to argue that

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Question 18

In paragraph 6, the author mentions electrically powered bicycles to argue that

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Instructions

The passage below is accompanied by a set of three questions. Choose the best answer to each question.

Typewriters are the epitome of a technology that has been comprehensively rendered obsolete by the digital age. The ink comes off the ribbon, they weigh a ton, and second thoughts are a disaster. But they are also personal, portable and, above all, private. Type a document and lock it away and more or less the only way anyone else can get it is if you give it to them. That is why the Russians have decided to go back to typewriters in some government offices, and why in the US, some departments have never abandoned them. Yet it is not just their resistance to algorithms and secret surveillance that keeps typewriter production lines ‚ÄĒ well one, at least ‚ÄĒ in business (the last British one closed a year ago). Nor is it only the nostalgic appeal of the metal body and the stout well-defined keys that make them popular on eBay. A typewriter demands something particular: attentiveness. By the time the paper is loaded, the ribbon tightened, the carriage returned, the spacing and the margins set, there's a big premium on hitting the right key. That means sorting out ideas, pulling together a kind of order and organising details before actually striking off. There can be no thinking on screen with a typewriter. Nor are there any easy distractions. No online shopping. No urgent emails. No Twitter. No need even for electricity ‚ÄĒ perfect for writing in a remote hideaway. The thinking process is accompanied by the encouraging clack of keys, and the ratchet of the carriage return. Ping!

Question 19

Which one of the following best describes what the passage is trying to do?

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Question 20

According to the passage, some governments still use typewriters because:

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Question 21

The writer praises typewriters for all the following reasons EXCEPT

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Instructions

The passage below is accompanied by a set of three questions. Choose the best answer to each question.

Despite their fierce reputation, Vikings may not have always been the plunderers and pillagers popular culture imagines them to be. In fact, they got their start trading in northern European markets, researchers suggest.

Combs carved from animal antlers, as well as comb manufacturing waste and raw antler material has turned up at three archaeological sites in Denmark, including a medieval marketplace in the city of Ribe. A team of researchers from Denmark and the U.K. hoped to identify the species of animal to which the antlers once belonged by analyzing collagen proteins in the samples and comparing them across the animal kingdom, Laura Geggel reports for LiveScience. Somewhat surprisingly, molecular analysis of the artifacts revealed that some combs and other material had been carved from reindeer antlers.... Given that reindeer (Rangifer tarandus) don't live in Denmark, the researchers posit that it arrived on Viking ships from Norway. Antler craftsmanship, in the form of decorative combs, was part of Viking culture. Such combs served as symbols of good health, Geggel writes. The fact that the animals shed their antlers also made them easy to collect from the large herds that inhabited Norway.

Since the artifacts were found in marketplace areas at each site it's more likely that the Norsemen came to trade rather than pillage. Most of the artifacts also date to the 780s, but some are as old as 725. That predates the beginning of Viking raids on Great Britain by about 70 years. (Traditionally, the so-called "Viking Age" began with these raids in 793 and ended with the Norman conquest of Great Britain in l066.) Archaeologists had suspected that the Vikings had experience with long maritime voyages [that] might have preceded their raiding days. Beyond Norway, these combs would have been a popular industry in Scandinavia as wela: It' s possible that the antler combs represent a larger trade network, where the Norsemen supplied raw material to craftsmen in Denmark and elsewhere.

Question 22

The primary purpose of the passage is:

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Question 23

The evidence - "Most of the artifacts also date to the 780s, but some are as old as 725" ‚ÄĒ has been used in the passage to argue that:

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Question 24

All of the following hold true for Vikings EXCEPT

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Instructions

For the following questions answer them individually

Question 25

The passage given below is followed by four summaries. Choose the option that best captures the author' s position.
North American walnut sphinx moth caterpillars (Amorpha juglandis) look like easy meals for birds, but they have a trick up their sleeves ‚ÄĒ they produce whistles that sound like bird alarm calls, scaring potential predators away. At first, scientists suspected birds were simply startled by the loud noise. But a new study suggests a more sophisticated mechanism: the caterpillar's whistle appears to mimic a bird alarm call, sending avian predators scrambling for cover. When pecked by a bird, the caterpillars whistle by compressing their bodies like an accordion and forcing air out through specialized holes in their sides. The whistles are impressively loud ‚ÄĒ they have been measured at over 80 dB from 5 cm away from the caterpillar ‚ÄĒ considering they are made by a two-inch long insect.

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Question 26

The passage given below is followed by four summaries. Choose the option that best captures the author's position.

Both Socrates and Bacon were very good at asking useful questions. In fact, Socrates is largely credited with coming up with a way of asking questions, 'the Socratic method,' which itself is at the core of the 'scientific method,' popularised by Bacon. The Socratic method disproves arguments by finding exceptions to them, and can therefore lead your opponent to a point where they admit something that contradicts their original position. In common with Socrates, Bacon stressed it was as important to disprove a theory as it was to prove one ‚ÄĒ and real-world observation and experimentation were key to achieving both aims. Bacon also saw science as a collaborative affair, with scientists working together, challenging each other.

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Question 27

The passage given below is followed by four summaries. Choose the option that best captures the author' s position.
A fundamental property of language is that it is slippery and messy and more liquid than solid, a gelatinous mass that changes shape to fit. As Wittgenstein would remind us, "usage has no sharp boundary." Oftentimes, the only way to determine the meaning of a word is to examine how it is used. This insight is often described as the "meaning is use" doctrine. There are differences between the "meaning is use" doctrine and a dictionary-first theory of meaning. "The dictionary's careful fixing of words to definitions, like butterflies pinned under glass, can suggest that this is how language works. The definitions can seem to ensure and fix the meaning of words, just as the gold standard can back a country's currency." What Wittgenstein found in the circulation of ordinary language, however, was a free-floating currency of meaning. The value of each word arises out of the exchange. The lexicographer abstracts a meaning from that exchange, which is then set within the conventions of the dictionary definition.

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Question 28

The five sentences labelled (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) given in this question, when properly sequenced, form a coherent paragraph. Each sentence is labelled with a number. Decide on the proper order for the sentences and key in this sequence of FIVE NUMBERS as your answer.

1: The implications of retelling of Indian stories, hence, takes on new meaning in a modern India.
2. The stories we tell reflect the world around us.
3. We cannot help but retell the stories that we value ‚ÄĒ after all, they are never quite right for us ‚ÄĒ in our time.¬†

4. And even if we manage to get them quite right, they are only right for us ‚ÄĒ other people living around us will have different reasons for telling similar stories.

5. As soon as we capture a story, the world we were trying to capture has changed.

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Question 29

The five sentences labelled (1, 2, 3, 4, 5) given in this question, when properly sequenced, form a coherent paragraph. Each sentence is labelled with a number. Decide on the proper order for the sentences and key in this sequence of FIVE NUMBERS as your answer.

1. Before plants can take life from atmosphere, nitrogen must undergo transformations similar to ones that food undergoes in our digestive machinery.
2. In its aerial form nitrogen is insoluble, unusable and is in need of transformation.
3. Lightning starts the series of chemical reactions that need to happen to nitrogen, ultimately helping it nourish our earth.
4. Nitrogen ‚ÄĒ an essential food for plants ‚ÄĒ is an abundant resource, with about 22 million tons of it floating over each square mile of earth.
5. One of the most dramatic examples in nature of ill wind that blows goodness is lightning.

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Question 30

The five sentences (labelled 1, 2, 3, 4, 5) given in this question, when properly sequenced, form a coherent paragraph. Each sentence is labelled with a number. Decide on the proper order for the sentences and key in this sequence of five numbers as your answer.
1. This has huge implications for the health care system as it operates today, where depleted resources and time lead to patients rotating in and out of doctor's offices, oftentimes receiving minimal care or concern (what is commonly referred to as "bed side manner") from doctors.
2. The placebo effect is when an individual's medical condition or pain shows signs of improvement based on a fake intervention that has been presented to them as a real one and used to be regularly dismissed by researchers as a psychological effect.
3. The placebo effect is not solely based on believing in treatment, however, as the clinical setting in which treatments are administered is also paramount.
4. That the mind has the power to trigger biochemical changes because the individual believes that a given drug or intervention will be effective could empower chronic patients through the notion of our bodies' capacity for self-healing.
5. Placebo effects are now studied not just as foils for "real" interventions but as a potential portal into the self-healing powers of the body.

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Question 31

The five sentences (labelled 1, 2, 3, 4, 5) given in this question, when properly sequenced, form a coherent paragraph. Each sentence is labelled with a number. Decide on the proper order for the sentences and key in this sequence of five numbers as your answer.
1. Johnson treated English very practically, as a living language, with many different shades of meaning and adopted his definitions on the principle of English common law ‚ÄĒ according to precedent.
2. Masking a profound inner torment, Johnson found solace in compiling the words of a language that was, in its coarse complexity and comprehensive genius, the precise analogue of his character.
3. Samuel Johnson was a pioneer who raised common sense to heights of genius, and a man of robust popular instincts whose watchwords were clarity, precision and simplicity.
4. The 18th century English reader, in the new world of global trade and global warfare, needed a dictionary with authoritative acts of definition of words of a language that was becoming seeded throughout the first British empire by a vigorous and practical champion.
5. The Johnson who challenged Bishop Berkeley's solipsist theory of the nonexistence of matter by kicking a large stone ("I refute it thus") is the same Johnson for whom language must have a daily practical use.

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Question 32

Five sentences related to a topic are given below. Four of them can be put together to form a meaningful and coherent short paragraph. Identify the odd one out.
1. Although we are born with the gift of language, research shows that we are surprisingly unskilled when it comes to communicating with others.
2. We must carefully orchestrate our speech if we want to achieve our goals and bring our dreams to fruition.
3. We often choose our words without thought, oblivious of the emotional effects they can have on others.
4. We talk more than we need to, ignoring the effect we are having on those listening to us.
5. We listen poorly, without realizing it, and we often fail to pay attention to the subtle meanings conveyed by facial expressions, body gestures, and the tone and cadence of our voice.

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Question 33

Five sentences related to a topic are given below. Four of them can be put together to form a meaningful and coherent short paragraph. Identify the odd one out.
1: Over the past fortnight, one of its finest champions managed to pull off a similar impression.
2. Wimbledon's greatest illusion is the sense of timelessness it evokes.
3. At 35 years and 342 days, Roger Federer became the oldest man to win the singles title in the Open Era ‚ÄĒ a full 14 years after he first claimed the title as a scruffy, pony-tailed upstart.
4. Once he had survived the opening week, the second week witnessed the range of a rested Federer's genius.
5. Given that his method isn't reliant on explosive athleticism or muscular ball-striking, both vulnerable to decay, there is cause to believe that Federer will continue to enchant for a while longer.

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Question 34

Five sentences related to a topic are given below. Four of them can be put together to form a meaningful and coherent short paragraph. Identify the odd one out.

1. Those geometric symbols and aerodynamic swooshes are more than just skin deep.
2. The Commonwealth Bank logo ‚ÄĒ a yellow diamond, with a black chunk sliced out in one corner ‚ÄĒ is so recognisable that the bank doesn't even use its full name in its advertising.
3. It's not just logos with hidden shapes; sometimes brands will have meanings or stories within them that are deliberately vague or lost in time, urging you to delve deeper to solve the riddle.
4. Graphic designers embed cryptic references because it adds a story to the brand; they want people to spend more time with a brand and have that idea that they are an insider if they can understand the hidden message.
5. But the CommBank logo has more to it than meets the eye, as squirrelled away in that diamond is the Southern Cross constellation.

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