Daq law' poHmey jIH yImev Sov qatlh jIH nuQ
nuq ghaH neH vaD latlh
1) maH 'oH latlh vo' pung
2) jIH DichDaq voq Daq joH'a'
pagh latlh ghaH poQta'
Wednesday, 30 May 2007
Monday, 28 May 2007
A friend from another section of my department has just reliably informed me that a project he and I were in the early stages of developing has already (just!) been pretty much completed by another group at another University.
It was a good idea then, but… AAAARRRGGGHHH!!!
Tuesday, 22 May 2007
Monday, 21 May 2007
I had thought that the health ‘risks’ associated with mobile phones had not been in the headlines very much lately, so I was reasonably pleased to see the debate appears to have moved on from mobile phones (from power lines from TV signals and no doubt from rubbing two bits of wood together) and onto wireless networks.
Given the amount of studies conducted into possible health effects of non-ionising radiation used in Wi-Fi, mobile phones, radio masts, radar, TV transmitters, satellite transmissions etc. that have nearly all turned up negative this is really, or should be at least, a non-issue. Shame on Panorama for creating such scare-mongering. Is it any wonder the public doesn’t trust scientists any more when this sort of stuff is flung about?
More motivation for public engagement with science I guess. And for the government to maybe solve the ever dropping number of physics teachers.
Disclaimer: If anyone can show me a physical mechanism where EMF of the range and intensity of radio waves and their day to day applications do nasty things to biological samples I will gladly take back what I have said and nominate you for a Nobel Prize.
Friday, 18 May 2007
Monday, 14 May 2007
Right from the first moment though, I was reassured that this expectation was correct. Travelling up with a bunch of guys I���������ve not really spoken to before concerned me a little but the banter and talk all the way up was full of excitement and expectation of what was to come. Narrowly missing the many pheasants and llamas that littered the countryside our thoughts soon turned to food and we stopped off at Blairgowrie to obtain some fish and chips, only to catch a stripy-capped yet nameless individual (known only as The Kaptain...) conducting a substantial raid on the ���������local��������� chippy. Fortunately for him and his partner in crime there was enough left for us.
Shortly after we arrived at the Compass Christian Centre and after a brief settling in period we got onto the important matters of the first session with Karl with chocolate brownies for supper. Karl spoke from 1 Samuel 13, about Jonathan and his armour bearer taking on the Philistine army armed only with one sword (light duties for the armour bearer?) and a mighty faith in God, while the rest of the Israelite army huddled under the now infamous pomegranate tree. We learnt that there was a time and a place for sitting still and enjoying life, but there are also times, probably more often than not, when we need to be taking the hills that God sets before us.
After the brownies (and other assorted quality cakes) we took Karl up on his challenge of five-a-side football and soon about 45 of us were cramming into the sports hall to take down, err, play against our fellow brothers. Much fun was had with only minimal injuries and wee dodgy refereeing.
The next morning after a very substantial breakfast we gathered for the second session entitled ���������Real Friendships��������� which Karl also preached the following day at MBC as the first in the ���������Relationships��������� series. It should have been nothing new, or that we should not have already been practicing, but it was a vital opportunity to not only consolidate it all but put it into immediate practice over the weekend. It was a great encouragement to see the challenge of this taken up with enthusiasm over the next two days.
Following this people trooped off onto their various activities. Doom for some in the gorge, hanging from trees for others and walking the ropes course blindfolded for the brave/foolhardy amongst other things. Everyone appeared to survive to enjoy a much needed lunch after.
Team building activities were next on the menu. We were quickly sorted into groups and assigned a demonstrator from the Centre staff which bought a loud cheer from one individual! In our groups we went around various activities trying to solve them on a time limit. Some were very tricky, a few potentially even more wet than we already were and one or two providing good chance for more minor injuries.
Dinner was a rather tasty beef stew for the carnivores and some sort onion��������� thing for the herbivores, followed up by a rather delicious apple pie and creme. I was still wondering what on Earth the primary school kids who were also visiting the centre were making of this rampant hoard of men sweeping forth and consuming everything but the cutlery set before them! I hope we haven���������t left them scared for life but it was good stew.
As this digested away within us we moved unto the third session with Karl. Covering the beatitudes in reverse (beautiful attitudes!) teaching us about what we need to be like to become more like Christ and to take the hills. A substantial task not only to get through so much in one session, but also with the challenge it presented us with.
I probably should���������ve mentioned before but all the sessions were excellently lead by George and a band of volunteers from the group. After the initial shock of 60 deep male voices praising God as one, the worship soon became a highlight and very as much a part of the challenging and motivating theme amongst us for the weekend as Karl���������s sessions or the activities themselves.
This third session was really quite incredible. People were impassioned by what they had heard and sung. To paraphrase they ���������got it���������. I don���������t often quote chapter and verse but the worship that night really fulfilled the kind of worship declared in John 4:23-24. God was very much present with us throughout the weekend, but especially that evening.
After that session anything was going to seem unsubstantial and unworthy. Gradually though the evening wound down to a quiet close over prayer, chats, discussions, a game of biblical Call My Bluff, football, and later on Risk for those still able to stay awake.
Sunday morning came with the ringing of the bell for breakfast at 7.45am. To say the response in my dorm was less than stellar compared to the previous day would be extremely accurate, but we eventually all arrived and enjoyed another good breakfast.
By this point the Kaptain had returned to preach at MBC and George, Hans and the Compass Centre staff lead us in worship. Before communion there was an opportunity for us to give testimony and share our thoughts for the weekend. This again proved to be a special time with not only glory being given to God and encouragement to each other, but also a valuable challenge to the group to strive for excellence in following Christ, a challenge I think I can be very confident in saying we will respond to and take up!
Following this we had the last set of activities which were of a similar nature to the day before, even down to the rain. I politely passed on the offer to climb a wet tree in the middle of a rain shower preferring instead to hang 10m or so off a wall inside the sports centre. A bad time to remember you don���������t like heights.
Again, lunch followed with a well-deserved note of thanks to both Brian and all the organisers and also to the Centre staff themselves, who were an extremely friendly and helpful bunch. Top blokes (and women ��������� yes there were a few there!).
By this point the rain had (briefly) stopped and we loaded up the cars and set out thinking of the best ways to avoid the
At the Sunday evening service Karl opened the mic up as usual for folks to come and talk about how God has been impacting their lives over the last week. I am certainly not an upfront person, but for once I wanted to go up and say something about the weekend, but I was totally unsure at that point of how to frame what I was thinking. The weekend was in many respects overwhelming, a taster perhaps of the community we are trying to build both within MBC and with those about us.
We were definitely challenged, but I think we all also felt the call there to take that challenge up and what excites me now looking back at the weekend is that I think we���������re going to do just that.
My prayer and hope is that next year (!) we will also be able to celebrate as well as reflect on everything that God is going to accomplish through us other the next twelve months or so!