• 所屬考試大學英語四級試題庫
  • 試題題型【閱讀理解 Section B】
Of the millions of inventions, what are the eight greatest?A) I’ve drawn up a list. And there’s one thing I know about this list: You won’t agree with it. Some of you will write to tell me I forgot the gun, the airplane, or whatever. Which is fine: A top-eight list is all about starting a good argument. But to draw up such a list, you have to set some guidelines and here are mine:I'm starting at the year zero. Otherwise, we’d never get out of prehistory. And I'm limiting inventions to physical devices. The scientific method, the university and electricity don’t count—they are, respectively, a concept, a social system, and something we discovered but which existed all along. This is a list of end products. That is, I'm excluding components with no independent function. Take the gear, for example. A groundbreaking bit of technology to be sure. Without it, we’d scarcely have any machines at all. But we never say, “Oh, damn, I’m out of gears!” Ditto microchips, transistors, and ball bearings. Here, then, in no particular order, are my nominees as the eight greatest inventions. 
1.The Mechanical Clock
B) Before this invention, time was inseparable from events, the main one being the sun crossing the sky. Only local time existed, no universal river of time. If you agreed to meet someone at sunset, you had to say where, because the sun is always setting somewhere. Then, mechanical clocks came around. Gradually, as these clocks all came to be coordinated, they created public time, a thing in itself: one single, universal current flowing everywhere throughout the universe, always at the same pace. People could now communicate with each other by coordinating to this universal frame of reference.. Thus, clocks made factories, offices, schools, meetings, and appointments possible. 
2.The Printing Press
C) Unoriginal, I know, but still it’s true. Gutenberg’s press, with its movable type, launched publishing. In the short term, this made the Reformation possible by putting a Bible in the hands of anybody who wanted one. The Church lost its lock on truth, and the sovereign individual soon emerged as the key unit of Western society. In the longer term, publishing universalized literacy. Before this invention, so few could read that, effectively, even those few lived in a world of oral tradition and memory. Humanity’s consensual picture of reality was shaped by stories, told and retold. In this fluid world, if the big picture shifted, no one knew, because they had nothing to check it against. The proliferation of text fixed objective reality. Now, when two people disagree about what happened yesterday, they can look it up. Our modern collective picture of reality is founded on facts archived as text. 
3.Immunization and Antibiotics

D) Three centuries ago, almost everyone died of infectious diseases. When the plague broke out in l347, it killed nearly half of Europe—in about two years. When diseases such as smallpox reached North America, they reduced the indigenous population by about 90 percent within a century. As late as 1800, the leading cause of death in the West was tuberculosis. Hardly anyone died of old age back then, one reason why elders were revered. Today, elders are a dime a dozen: nothing unusual about surviving past 70. In the United States, 73 percent of people die of heart failure, cancer, and stroke. It’s a different world, folks. 
4.The Telephone

E) Lets of people imagined the telephone before any telephone existed. Once the device was invented. and businessmen had wrested it away from the inventors, the Network began to form. That’s the actual invention— the Network. It enables anyone to talk to anyone anywhere at any given moment. So today, anyone’s real-time group includes people not physically present, and they could be anywhere. The infrastructure took some time to develop, but the telephone implied all this from the start. 
5.The Electrical Grid
F) Electricity existed all along, but the system of devices needed to generate this force and distribute it to individual buildings was an invention, launched initially by Edison: He effectively turned electricity into a salable commodity and his Pearl Street station was the world’s first electric power station. Nikola Tesla’s invention of alternating current(AC)technology then made it possible to transmit electricity over long distances, leading to the nationwide grid we know today. Now, anyone in the West and throughout most of the world can tap into the grid to power everything from light bulbs to computers. We are, in fact, a social organism animated by electricity. 
6.The Automobile
G) Once cars were invented, roads were improved. Once roads were improved, cities sprouted suburbs, because people could now live in the country, yet work in the city. And thus we have become a nation of sprawl, rather than density. Furthermore, as cars grew popular, the oil industry boomed. Oil became a key to power and wealth—and one of the major factors for political and economic unrest in the Middle East. And here we are today. 
7.The Television
H) Wherever a television set is on, it absorbs attention like no other piece of furniture. Jane Healy, in her book Endangered Minds, says television has changed the human brain itself. Our neural networks are not hardwired at birth but continue to develop for several years, new circuits forming in response to our first interactions with the environment. In much of the developed world, young children interact largely with television, so their neural networks can accommodate its warm, one-way, pacifying, activity-dampening stimulus. 
8.The Computer
I) My deepest, richest, most diverse, and rewarding relationship is with my computer. It plays games with me, tells me jokes, plays music to me, and does my taxes. I have great conversations with it, too. These conversations appear as e-mail and take on the personalities of supposed “friends, ” but the human embodiments of those “friends” are rarely with me. My concrete relationship is with this object on my desk for in my lap).
1.[選詞填空]The author thinks the electricity is something existed all along that can’t be described as an invention.
    • 解題思路:由題干中the electricity可定位至A段。本段指出, 科學方法、大學和電不在作者提名的范圍之內,因為它們分別是一個概念、一種社會系統和一種被我們發現但一直存在的東西。由此可知,作者認為電是一直存在的, 只不過我們發現了, 不能算發明。故匹配段落為A段。
    2.[選詞填空]Endangered Minds, written by Jane Heady, suggests that television has something to do with the change of our brain.
      • 解題思路:由題干中Endangered Minds定位至H段。本段講到,Jane Healy在她的《心靈危機》一書中說, 電視改變了人腦本身(has changed the human brain itself)。故匹配段落為H段。
      3.[選詞填空]The plague that killed nearly half of Europe broke out in 1347.
        • 解題思路:由題干中關鍵詞The plague定位至D段。本段提到瘟疫爆發的時間是1347年,故匹配段落為D段。

        a视频在线视频观看日本The actual invention brought by the telephone was the Network.

          • 解題思路:由題干可定位到E段,作者講到當電話發明了之后,通訊網絡就開始建立了,這才是真正的發明。故匹配段落為E段。
          5.[選詞填空]Nikola Tesla invented alternating current technology that enabled electricity to be transmitted over long distances.
            • 解題思路:由題干中Nikola Tesla定位至F段。文中講到,Nikola Tesla發明的交流電技術(簡稱AC)使人們得以遠距離地輸送電力(made it possible to transmit electricity over long distances)。故匹配段落為F段。
            6.[選詞填空]The political and economic unrest in the Middle East is principally attributed to oil.
              • 解題思路:由題干中he Middle East可定位至G段。本句講到,石油是造成中東地區政治和經濟動蕩的主要原因之一。故匹配段落為G段
              7.[選詞填空]The author have conversations through e-mail with the computer.
                • 解題思路:由題干中conversations with the computer可定位至I段第四句。本句講到,這些談話以電子郵件的形式出現。故匹配段落為I段。
                8.[選詞填空]Gear, though a great invention, is excluded from the author’s list because it doesn’t have independent function.
                  • 解題思路:由題干中Gear定位至A段。本段講到這個名單中不包括沒有獨立功能的項目,然后用the gear舉例說明,由此可見the gear被排除在外是因為它沒有獨立功能。故匹配段落為A段。
                  9.[選詞填空]Before the clock was invented, there was not a universal reference of time.
                    • 解題思路:由題干中關鍵詞the clock定位至B段。本段講到在還沒有時鐘之前,人們計時的依據之一是太陽;然后接著講到,只有本地時間,沒有通用的參照時間(no universal river of time)。故匹配段落為B段。
                    10.[選詞填空]After the invention of printing press, people no longer had to live by oral tradition and memory .
                      • 解題思路:由題干中printing press可定位至C段。本段講到在這個發明之前,很少人能夠閱讀,而這少部分能夠閱讀的人也還是生活在一個靠口述和記憶為主的世界中(lived in a world of oral tradition and memory)。由此可知,在印刷術發明之后,人們就擺脫了原來的生活方式,故匹配段落為C段。
                      • 參考答案:A,H,D,E,F,G,I,A,B,C