Before you read a story about a parking attendant at Bristol Zoo, read the following questions.
 

1. What’s the total vehicle capacity of the car park?

2. What verb in English could be used in place of turn up in the second paragraph?

3. Why did the Zoo phone up the City Council?

4. Did the car park attendant work for the City Council?

5. How long had he been collecting money?

6. What word could you use in place of bloke in the final paragraph?

7. Do you think the story is true?
   

Now read the text and answer the questions.
 
The Bristol Zoo Parking AttendantDiccionario online

Outside the Bristol Zoo, in the UK, there’s a car park for 150 cars and 8 coaches, or buses.
It was looked after by a very nice and pleasant car park attendant who carried a ticket machine and charged cars £1 (about $1.40) and coaches £5 (about $7). This car park attendant worked there continually for 25 years. Then, one day, he just didn’t turn up for work.
“Oh well”, said Bristol Zoo management – “we’d better phone up the City Council and get them to send a new car park attendant…”
The City Council said, “Err … no. That car park is your responsibility, not ours.”
“Err … no”, said Bristol Zoo Management, “the attendant was employed by the City Council, wasn’t he?”
“Err … NO!” insisted the Council, “we know nothing about a Council employee working at the zoo.”
Somewhere on the coast of Spain, sitting in his expensive villa and gazing at the view and his beautiful blue swimming pool, is a bloke who had been taking the parking fees, estimated at £400 (about $560) per day at Bristol Zoo for the last 25 years. Assuming he worked 7 days a week, this amounts to just over £3.6 million ($7 million)! And no one even knows his name.

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Before you read an article about a computer game manufacturer, read the following questions.
 

1. What was wrong with Cyberlink’s business plan?

2. In which three areas can Cyberlink not compete its main competitors?

3. According to the article, what is one of the dangers of having a hi-tech business?
   

Now read the text and answer the questions.
 
Cyberlink Finally Closes

Diccionario onlineThe computer game manufacturer, Cybermax, finally closed down its last two offices yesterday and called in the receivers. The news came as a shock to many city analysts who were expecting the company to arrange a refinancing package with its creditors.
Cyberlink was founded in 1998 by British-born IT whiz-kid Sammy Lee, who dropped out of university early to develop revolutionary computer game software and hand-held gaming consoles. Despite early successes and a strong international following from hardcore gamers, the company's business plan did not take into account that most people were looking to Sony and Microsoft for their gaming needs.
Cliff Western, head of the banking consortium which was Cyberlink's main backer announced yesterday "Market research now shows that most people don’t want to pay more money for a product they haven’t heard of. Cyberlink simply cannot compete with the two market leaders in product promotion, marketing or price."
Mr Western also pointed out that the consortium had always considered Cyberlinkto be a speculative investment, and he mentioned that the consortium had played it safe by making an equivalent investment in Blackmans, a larger, more mainstream company which manufactures gaming hardware. On balance, Mr Western thought that the consortium would break even.
Sammy Lee complained that the company had been badly hit by an unexpected drop in its share price, which had made it very expensive for the company to take on new debt by pledging equity as collateral. Recent months have seen the share price of the company fall from a high of $1.98 per share, to yesterday's low of 23 cents.
Because the company has got almost nothing that creditors can sell, they have no way to get their money back again - another example of the dangers of trading in the hi-tech sector.

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