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Kevin Clift
Worked at Hewlett-Packard
Attended University of Southampton
Lived in Cupertino, California, USA
12,779 followers|5,681,246 views
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Kevin Clift

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Hyper Mathematician
 
Stand-up comedian and Mathematician +Matt Parker amuses, astonishes and educates children and their parents in this video from +The Royal Institution explaining how to use projection and shadows as aids to visualisation of four dimensional objects.

Matt has also written a book Things to do in the Fourth Dimension.

Video (1:0:39): http://goo.gl/82sgq2

Also recommended for practicing your 4D skills:

Dimensions Watch: http://goo.gl/al3Wcl
Dimensions (multi-lingual): http://goo.gl/sEV5dl
Dimensions (more details): http://goo.gl/gHNKHz

Daughter of Boole of Boolean Logic fame
Elicia Boole: http://goo.gl/ewlvYd

Also don't miss:

Ian's Fast Shoelace Knot: http://goo.gl/RRozAT
Video Helper: http://goo.gl/ydupw5

Matt Parker: http://goo.gl/fNWnPw
Book (Things to do in the Fourth Dimension): http://goo.gl/hf7bDJ

Image: http://goo.gl/MAJHll
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I note there are 4 squares that change their size and position, but never their planar orientation with respect to 2 axes.  So all the other changes are relative to the 3rd axis and this animation only involves time as its "4th dimension"
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Kevin Clift

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Meter Reader
via redditor dedokta

Reading an electricity meter in eastern Australia can have its own challenges.  Meet mummy Holconia immanis and her babies.

Habitat: Mostly under loose bark but may be found in sheds and houses

Toxicity: Uncertain; may cause mild illness

Sydney Hunstman Spider (Holconia immanis): http://goo.gl/apBnpi
Likely identificiation according to u/chandalowe
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#Nope....
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Kevin Clift

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Black Death Who me?

According to a kind of black rat innocence project, researchers are suggesting that these dirty rats may not have been to blame for the numerous outbreaks of bubonic plague across Europe after all. Instead the deadly epidemics seem to have been caused by the movement, in successive waves from Asia to Europe, of the benign-looking but infected-flea-carrying giant gerbil.

[...]

However, Prof Stenseth and his colleagues do not think a rat reservoir was to blame.

They compared tree-ring records from Europe with 7,711 historical plague outbreaks to see if the weather conditions would have been optimum for a rat-driven outbreak.

He said: "For this, you would need warm summers, with not too much precipitation. Dry but not too dry.

"And we have looked at the broad spectrum of climatic indices, and there is no relationship between the appearance of plague and the weather."

Instead, the team believes that specific weather conditions in Asia may have caused another plague-carrying rodent - the giant gerbil - to thrive.

And this then later led to epidemics in Europe.

"We show that wherever there were good conditions for gerbils and fleas in central Asia, some years later the bacteria shows up in harbour cities in Europe and then spreads across the continent," Prof Stenseth said.

He said that a wet spring followed by a warm summer would cause gerbil numbers to boom.

"Such conditions are good for gerbils. It means a high gerbil population across huge areas and that is good for the plague," he added.

[...]

More here: http://goo.gl/DvRSdt





Paper (open pdf): http://goo.gl/UJ8rgD

Cardiff Innocence Project: http://goo.gl/gxpsvG

Image: http://goo.gl/Zxbyju
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+John Lawrence. wise ass I have glasses and it still looks like a squirrel. But something tells me you know exactly what a gerbil looks like don't you 
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Kevin Clift

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Just William

In this episode of Just William, William, the chief outlaw, who is used to roaming in the woods and fields and leading an adventurous gang of small boys, is obliged by his Mother to play with a highly polished and refined little girl, with immaculately curled hair, clean clothes and perfectly clean skin. Violette Elizabeth tells William that she will cwy and cwy unless William will give her a kiss and admit that he likes little girls.  

The next day Violette Elizabeth's parentally enforced perfection and cleanliness is severely challenged when she unexpectedly joins and wreaks havoc on Williams gang.


When I first read The Sweet Little Girl in White by Richmal Crompton, when I was about seven or eight I laughed 'til I cried – thanks library!

Here it is read and performed by Martin Jarvis.

Listen here (~30 mins): http://goo.gl/XuYDdL



Image (fair use): http://goo.gl/Fghg0j
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Kevin Clift

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Specimen Manipulator

In order to be able to light, study, photograph, and compare insect specimens from multiple directions a simple, open, 3D manipulator has been developed using readily available LEGO® components.  Given its versatility and low-cost this device, called the IMp, will become the standard at the Sackler Biodiversity Imaging Lab at the Natural History Museum in London.

IMps will be used for a multi-year project to digitize the 20 million insect specimens available at the Museum and in time the resultant digital images and descriptive data will be made available online.

We believe the insect specimen manipulators presented here are a valuable addition to any entomologist’s toolbox and that the use of any insect manipulator is in the interest of anyone dealing with valuable specimens as the actual handling of the specimen is reduced to a minimum during examination. In case of the original IMp and Giant-IMp models the specimens are further protected from accidental contact during examination by the supporting cube structure. These LEGO® based manipulators benefit from their modular design as they are inexpensive and made from readily available components. Furthermore, even the largest of the models can be disassembled for travel. The open design further allows for the addition of portable lighting solutions (such as LEDs) and an endless amount of customization which makes them ideal for specimen imaging. Future modifications of the IMp models may include the addition of motorized control, using Arduino controllers or native LEGO® motors and software from the LEGO® mindstorms range.

Paper (open): http://goo.gl/RsXPk6

Video (0:20): http://goo.gl/2IhEJU

Instructions: http://goo.gl/5yWKsT


Image from paper above.
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+Kevin Clift Fascinating - thanks!
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Robin Hood Sperm Whales
via +Sam Andrews 

Scientists are puzzling over how to stop sperm whales stealing Alaskan fishermen's catch

I'm not sure who is stealing from whom though!

Commercial fishers not all using these smaller vessels pictured, drop and anchor strong lines, many kilometers long, appropriately called longlines, featuring thousands of shorter fishing lines each with large baited hooks to catch various groundfish include sablefish, Pacific cod, and rockfish species from the ocean floor. They leave their longline sets to soak undisturbed overnight and return to haul up the catch the next day.

Meanwhile, some smart Sperm Whales listening out for the sound of the engines hauling-in the lines the next morning promptly arrive and cleverly use their long jaws to take some of the fish back for themselves inadvertently damaging the fishing gear,  endangering themselves, the fishers and the finances.

It seems that this Robin Hood technique is being shared socially by the whales, some of whom, thanks to treaties, are allowed to live long enough to refine their expertise!

“It was only 160 years ago that the classic novel Moby Dick was written, capturing the dramas at sea of whalers,” says Alaska: Earth’s Frozen Kingdom producer Jane Atkins.

“Now the tables have turned, whaling is banned, and sperm whales are returning and learning to take on fishermen in bold and surprising ways – and so far there is very little the fishermen can do about it.


More here: http://goo.gl/wzbZAD
Note the video clip at the top.

More background: http://goo.gl/KQEnTO
There is an older video here too.

Image: http://goo.gl/dvFVlp
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People have to eat. We need more fish farms, and we need to shut Japan DOWN, again.
The japanese can eat rice. They are raping the oceans, and not a soul is doing enough !
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Kevin Clift

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Leonard Nimoy 1931/3/26 – 2015/2/27

Sadly, he smoked in real life.

Leonard Nimoy, the sonorous, gaunt-faced actor who won a worshipful global following as Mr. Spock, the resolutely logical human-alien first officer of the Starship Enterprise in the television and movie juggernaut “Star Trek,” died on Friday morning at his home in the Bel Air section of Los Angeles. He was 83.
In addition to acting, Mr. Nimoy directed films; published poetry, autobiographies and books of photography; and recorded music.
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His work in Star Trek was amazing. I will miss him.
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Michael Faraday Lecture 2014/2015

Each year since 1986 The Royal Society has awarded the +Michael Faraday prize for exemplary science communication with a lay audience.  In 2014 the silver gilt medal, and the £2,500 prize was awarded to UCL Chemistry Professor Andrea Sella.  Previous winners have included +Marcus du Sautoy, Jocelyn Bell-Burnell, Colin Pillinger, Brian Cox and Frank Close.

In exchange Professor Sella gave the required lecture which has now been made available online.

Chemistry is often perceived as difficult, abstract and dangerous. Chemists often use the visual spectacle of explosions and bubbling glassware to popularise the subject and as a result, the public view of chemistry has not caught up to the radical changes in the field.

In this Faraday Award prize lecture, Professor Andrea Sella argued that chemists themselves are to blame. Chemists need new ways to talk about their subject and tell a deeper story. Sella explored chemistry as an intellectual challenge, which provides not only everyday applications and spectacle, but also gives insights into some of the deepest mysteries of science like the origins of life and the enigma of biological pattern formation.

More here: http://goo.gl/ZEuT3K

Is chemistry really so difficult? (Video 1:04:49): http://goo.gl/icjIAD

BBC World Service Elements (listen each ~30 mins): http://goo.gl/881uvw

Sodium's explosive secrets revealed: http://goo.gl/9nALu3

Tsvett's column: http://goo.gl/SU4Ghc

Classic Kit: http://goo.gl/G11t1r

ExpeRimental (2014): http://goo.gl/MFDpgg
A series of short films making it fun, easy and cheap to do science at home with your children

School science needs practical experiments: http://goo.gl/LohIJn

How the Leopard Got His Spots: http://goo.gl/FHkrRY

Dr. Boom: http://goo.gl/M9REzG

Professor Andrea Sella: http://goo.gl/saOCeQ

Image: http://goo.gl/jyYfQc
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If only he had the opportunities in the beginning... Imagine what he could have done. Not to say he didn't accomplish alot in the first place :) 
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Genetic Diversity

Where would you expect to find the highest concentration of seed-plant diversity anywhere on Earth, somewhere in the tropics perhaps?

No! It seems that Wakehurst Place in the beautiful county of Sussex, in Southern England has that honour! At least for a spot of its size and as measured by statistics with certain definitions of genetic diversity.

Phylogenetic diversity represents the total evolutionary history of a set of species, and thus its evolutionary potential. It is measured by summing the total phylogenetic distance, span and branch lengths of an evolutionary tree among a set of species.

More here: http://goo.gl/QLEICx

MSB: http://goo.gl/Uz6dwq

Wakehurst Place Manor (Big Pic): http://goo.gl/nc2NXJ

Image: Jeffdelonge http://goo.gl/uwlH27
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Heres an interesting article on evolution in action.
https://plus.google.com/109290481254041875672/posts/ftDZoVpnCBj
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Axelrod's Tournament

+Vincent Knight is inviting participants for his iterated prisoners' dilemma.  If you can code in Python and enjoy Game Theory then this may be for you.  He will even help you if you don't.
 
Axelrod's tournament on github

Please share and contribute to this repository: https://github.com/drvinceknight/Axelrod

In the 1908s Axelrod ran a computer tournament that has often been used as a discussion point for how cooperation can evolve in complex systems.

I've modified a workshop I gave in Namibia to allow for simple contributions of strategies to a Prisoner's Dilemma tournament.

I've written a blog post about contributing here: http://goo.gl/zkgSkc and +Jason Young helped me put together a video showing how to submit a strategy with nothing more than the github web interface: http://youtu.be/5kOUVdktxAo

If anyone would like to contribute but does not know Python or does not feel confident in their knowledge of git/github please do get in touch. 

All strategies would be welcome: not just winning ones :D
I post stuff here about game theory, queueing theory, pedagogy, Sage, Python and other things...
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Kevin Clift

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Valentine Twists

Here's some lovely topological fun that you and the kids in your life can enjoy and learn from on St. Valentines Day.
 
A colleague of mine, Tadashi Tokieda, has a nice mathematical demonstration appropriate for St Valentine's Day. Years ago, I entertained my then children (by which I mean that they are grown up now but I have more children) with cutting Mobius strips in half, so I was familiar with some of this. But Tadashi takes things a step or two further. If you're short of time, then I'd recommend starting at about the one-minute mark. (The video is two minutes and 37 seconds.) And if you're really short of time, you could start at 1:40 and cut right to the chase. But it's better if you watch the whole lot.

In an email to me, Tadashi made the following remark, which I lack the knowledge to understand, but which I include for the benefit of those less ignorant than I am: "What you are getting at the end is R^2 blown up at a point twice successively then sliced along the exceptional divisor." Perhaps someone can explain this to me.
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I see you posted something earlier on Tadashi Tokieda's toys +Luis Guzman!    I did too: http://goo.gl/BEXZxJ
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Predator Prey

It seems that if you're a rabbit or a pheasant and you actually notice a goshawk on your tail your best chance of survival is an abrupt right-angled turn which seems to break the close visual fixation being applied to you. By the way goshawks often hunt by stealth and you even won't see them coming!

Kane knew that she could only really understand the goshawk’s strategy from a bird’s-eye perspective.  To achieve this, she worked with master falconer Robert Musters and his goshawk, Shinta. “Robert is an inventor and engineer and he designed the camera helmet that Shinta wore,” says Kane, who formulated the research plan and supplied Musters with the tiny spy camera that was mounted on the bird’s head. Shinta did her part by flying freely through forests and fields, searching for prey and then hunting it using the same tactics observed for wild goshawks.

More here: http://goo.gl/PLZ2Zc

Video (2:42): http://goo.gl/RJZRLw

Paper (closed): http://goo.gl/787J10

Edit (for anyone who missed it last time):
Earlier Falcon on Prey video: http://goo.gl/bNhHvN
Earlier Paper (open): http://goo.gl/aq7NeU

Image: Steve Garvie, Dunfermline, Scotland http://goo.gl/tfTLfp
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I have no idea +Debashish Samaddar I rarely use the front page but this does happen from time to time.
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Have him in circles
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Education
  • University of Southampton
    B.Sc. Mathematics, 1973 - 1976
Basic Information
Gender
Male
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Married
Work
Occupation
Family medical responsibilities
Employment
  • Hewlett-Packard
    Director World Wide Pre-Sales (Manufacturing), 2003 - 2005
  • Hewlett-Packard
    Chief Architect (Manufacturing Industries Business Unit), 2002 - 2003
  • Hewlett-Packard
    Solution Creation Manager (Manufacturing), 1999 - 2002
  • Hewlett-Packard
    Prinicipal Consultant, 1997 - 1999
  • Hewlett-Packard
    Manufacturing Business Consultant, 1995 - 1997
  • Hewlett-Packard
    US FMCG Center of Expertise, 1990 - 1995
  • Hewlett-Packard
    Europe FMCG Centre of Expertise, 1988 - 1990
  • Hewlett-Packard
    Applications Engineer (Manufacturing), 1981 - 1988
  • Hewlett-Packard
    Systems Engineer, 1979 - 1981
  • Matchbox
    Production Control Analyst, 1976 - 1979
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Previously
Cupertino, California, USA - Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota, USA - Reading, England - London, England - Southampton, England - Nürnberg, Germany - Basingstoke, England
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