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30th November 2015


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  • Slug trouble

    Posted 12/05/2015 by sevans
    The sun is out, Spring is in the air and already the lovingly nurtured seedlings in my garden have taken a hammering from a veritable army of slugs. Britain, according to an article I found on the web, is the ‘slug capital of the world’. Apparently there are more than 30 different species, of which four - the Field Slug. The Garden Slug, The Keel Slug and the Black Slug - are the most damaging in our gardens, notes Professor William O. C. Symondson, a world authority on the subject ... Read more... Comments (0)
  • How green is your chemistry

    Posted 17/04/2015 by sevans
    Green chemistry has been a buzz term across chemistry for a number of years, based on the 12 principles developed by Paul Anastas and John Warner back in the late 1990s. Indeed, it would be hard to find a chemist anywhere that does not have these principles tattooed on their brain and influencing everything they do. In our environmentally aware times, chemical companies too have attempted to apply the principles to their production operations, and have trumpeted their successes in their fashio... Read more... Comments (0)
  • Dancing with the budget

    Posted 23/03/2015 by sevans


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  • A free curry Emma

    Posted 11/03/2015 by sevans
    In case you may have missed it, Sunday 8 March this week was International Women's Day (IWD), the day when apparently we are supposed to celebrate the achievements of women – 'while calling for equality', according to the organiser's website. So just how far has feminism come? Not quite as far as offering to foot the bill for a dinner date, if we are to believe the fuss surrounding actress Emma Watson's headline grabbing 'admission' in Monday's papers. Even with more than a few million sq... Read more... Comments (0)
  • Computer rage

    Posted 09/03/2015 by cgodfrey
    Have you ever felt like taking a hammer to your desktop computer or laptop? It might sound extreme to some, but you are among good company. A study as long ago as 2007 showed that 75% of office workers admitted to resorting to physical violence against their computer – one might assume that the remaining 25% only subjected their inanimate work mate to mental abuse. The other side of the coin is, of course, the increasing numbers of people, young and old, who are addicted to their computers... Read more... Comments (0)
  • Education for all

    Posted 18/02/2015 by sevans
    I almost didn't go. Day two of the AAAS conference in San Jose, CA, and still waking up at 3am in the morning with jet lag, I'd already saturated my grey matter through hours of high level discussions on everything from the future of the internet to autonomous cars, visualising chronic pain and e-cigarettes. The 5pm plenary lecture on 'The online revolution: learning without limits' was by Daphne Koller, someone I'd never heard off, and wouldn't end until 6. I'm so glad I went. Daphne Koller, i... Read more... Comments (0)
  • Pro-nuclear – or against?

    Posted 04/02/2015 by cgodfrey
    The House of Commons this week voted by 382 to 128 – a majority of 254 – to allow mitochondrial donation through a controversial amendment to the 2008 Human Fertilisation and Embryology Act. The regulations, which are likely also to be approved in the House of Lords, put the UK firmly on course to become the first country in the world to allow the creation of so-called ‘three-parent babies’. The first baby with DNA from three people could be born as early as 2016. Along ... Read more... Comments (0)
  • Suffering rejection

    Posted 30/01/2015 by sevans
    Ever wondered what happens when you drop some ideas into your company’s suggestion box? Do they disappear into that waste paper mountain or are they considered carefully for their potential by the management? If they do take the time to read your thoughts – and they like what they see – do you ever hear anything in response? And if you do hear back, does it encourage further thinking or just stop the creative juices, or even redirect them to something else more personal? Well,... Read more... Comments (0)
  • Milking it

    Posted 21/01/2015 by cgodfrey
    How much for a price of milk? It’s the standard question used to sound out whether an MP is or is not ‘in touch’ with his or her constituents. At just 20 pence per litre from some retailers, however, the cost of a pint of milk now falls far short of the actual cost of production. It is a price that is simply not sustainable and is forcing farmers out of business every week, according to the UK’s Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Committee. In December 2014, the Nation... Read more... Comments (0)
  • Lest we forget

    Posted 10/12/2014 by sevans
    One hundred years after the outbreak of World War 1, while the ceramic poppies have been disappearing from the moat of the Tower of London, the flower that has come to symbolise the lives lost in conflict is also disappearing from the former battle fields of northern France and Belgian Flanders. Research has found that overall plant biodiversity in the region has increased during the past 100 years; but this rise in the number of plant species is not good news. The findings highlight increasing... Read more... Comments (0)
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