Tag Archives: science

On the Go

First off, apologies for my really long absence. I’ve been ill for a few weeks, and before that, I was just lazy. So, sorry.

The final year of my degree has not exactly been leisurely. If I thought revising for University Challenge was bad, I clearly hadn’t encountered synchrotrons.

For those of you who don’t know what a synchrotron is, it’s a type of particle accelerator used to produce light. That is all you will ever need to know for the entirety of your life.

I, however, know a little more about them. I’m waiting for the day I’m idly wandering the streets when a policeman shouts “Oh, sweet Lord! Can anyone here use Matlab to produce a model of a FODO lattice for use in third generation light sources? Lives depend on it.”

I’m not sure it’s going to happen.

I love synchrotrons, and their radiation, utterly disproportionately. You won’t believe all the clever things they’re used for. Still, there’s this nagging feeling that maybe I’ve taken this physics thing a bit far.

To start with, it was a brilliant idea. Do some research. Get a specialism. Know what I’m talking about. Now, it’s getting silly.

But you know what? I don’t care. The more I think about it, the more fun it is. This is what uni should have been from the off- researching something I knew nothing about. I’ve learnt so much.

“All knowledge is precious, whether or not it serves the slightest human use.”

That’s why I want to be a journalist. To know, and to tell everyone what I know.

Let me.

Not the Leveson Report

I originally intended to write this blog on the Leveson report. I opened it, flicked through the pages, and after seeing the sheer heft of the mere table of contents, decided that it was probably not worth it.

Instead, I intend to invite you to my own smug little world as I cope with the giddy aftermath of discovering one of my articles in print for the first time. Of course, I’ve been in school and college publications- but they’re not exactly Focus magazine, are they?

Before I had even bought my copy of November’s Focus magazine from WHSmith’s, I had my nose between the pages. I walked to the counter, tossed some coins across, wandered out into the cold, realised it was cold and wandered into MenKind, where eventually I found what I was looking for. I then proceeded to pretend to browse as I attempted to cork my bubbling excitement.

Really,  I had no idea that my article was going to end up in print. I had felt that perhaps the Focus team were just being kind when they told me of the possibility, and that it was an outcome generally reserved for those better than I. In actuality, I desperately wanted a print article to spice up my portfolio for the benefit of any potential employers and/or admissions tutors.

Still, there it was. My initial thought was to be incredibly pleased that they had spruced it up with a whacking great graphic. It looked beautiful and professional.

This is Focus magazine we’re talking about though. Of course it’s beautiful and professional. Now, and with a piece of paper to prove it, I am also beautiful and professional.

I knew I was going to be excited when I finally got an article into print. I just didn’t realise how excited. I also didn’t realise how desperately dull it would be for everyone who knows me.

If I were a trainee surgeon, and I showed people all the operations I’d managed to blag my way into doing with the aim of perfecting my craft, it would be laughable. So why am I surprised that nobody’s asked to borrow my copy of November’s Focus?

I’m sorry that I’m boring, that I love a job I don’t even have yet and that I want to ruin your day with all the awful details. I really am.

Still- I’m in print!