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Kevin Clift
Worked at Hewlett-Packard
Attended University of Southampton
Lived in Cupertino, California, USA
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Kevin Clift

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Karlie Noon

Despite obstacles from her background, twenty-six year-old Karlie Noon just graduated from the University of Newcastle in Australia with a degree in Pure Maths and Physics, thanks to her hard work, a turning point and a mentor.

Karlie Noon: I didn't go to school much. I think most of the time my attendance was below 50%. I really disliked school. We were really poor growing up as well. My mum has quite a few disabilities, and so she was on the disability pension, so that was the wage that we lived off. My clothes were always dirty, I was always smelly, I never had food or money. I guess I got picked on a lot.

Anna Salleh: But help was at hand, and Karlie ended up excelling in maths.

Karlie Noon: We had this family friend who was a local elder in the community, a really good friend of my grandma, and she would come over every week and she would tutor me in maths. And so I had this inspiration in my life from a really young age, and also the support, and so maths was by far my strongest subject.

More here (interview transcript):
(You can also listen, download, subscribe or select show transcript tab.)
(The transcript hashtag in the URL doesn't work properly.)

Karlie tosses her green-tipped hair and proudly declares herself to be a Kamilaroi woman from up around Tamworth, the country music capital of Australia.

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Karlie Noon (University of Newcastle, Australia):

Karlie Noon (University of Newcastle, Australia)
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Wood Pollution

The Earth once had the opposite problem of the one we are all facing today. Since the Industrial Revolution we have released into our atmosphere, too much of the carbon that was once trapped deep underground in fossilized plant material, by retrieving and burning it as coal and oil for energy. But, there was a time when plants, which are largely made from the carbon they absorb from the atmosphere, evolved a harder, more rigid, support material called lignin that allowed them to get higher into the air. This was good news for the plants, but some then grew so tall that their leaves could no longer be reached by the herbivores of the time, digested and converted into animal material and waste. Worse still, when these lignin supported plants died, the prevailing bacteria and fungi could not (for the most part) break them down, and the world slowly became swamped with dead trees and lignin.

But why was all this lignin laying around in the first place? Plenty of organisms had found a way to make use of cellulose, so why didn't they jump on this new source of energy that was laying around free for the taking? The are several reasons: first, whereas cellulose was made of glucose, which can be readily converted to energy, lignin was based on phenol, a derivative of benzene, which is only a good energy source when it's on fire. This isn't a solution for your average bacterium. Digesting lignin was so difficult that lycopods had free reign over the planet for over 40 million years, leading to the world's first and only wood pollution crisis.  Finally, however, a fungus belonging to the class Agaricomycetes – making it a distant cousin of button mushrooms – did find a crude way to break down lignin. Rather than devise an enzyme to unstitch the lignin molecule, however, it was forced to adapt a more direct strategy. Using a class of enyzmes called peroxidases, the fungus bombarded the wood with highly reactive oxygen molecules, in much the same way one might untie a knot using a flamethrower. This strategy reduced the wood to a carbohydrate-rich slurry from which the fungus could slurp up the edible cellulose.

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Addison Rennick's profile photoRandall Lee Reetz's profile photoRichard Green's profile photoKevin Clift's profile photo
I wondered if the author was a Brit but on a quick inspection it looks like he's from here.
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Political Pangaea

In 2012 cartographer, Massimo Pietrobon (@massopietra), mapped the current political map of the world onto the ancient single landmass called Pangaea that was a single super-continent during the late Paleozoic era. He found we would all have had interesting neighbours.

But the happy surprise is Florida. Today it's an isolated peninsula, sticking out of the ocean, just above sea level. But back in the Paleozoic, it was the place to be, if you liked company. You'll find it right in the center of this next little map, in green, right next to Conakry, Guinea, where Cuba and Puerto Rico are clumping close, Brazil is a stone's throw south and Sierra Leone a few miles east, so if you run in a big circle, you can play tag with three future continents and a bunch of Caribbean islands on the same day. This is what a good map can do — it can entertain. Who needs Disney World when you can do this?

More here (article):
(see below for bigger pic)

Massimo says (Google translated)...

Here we present the most detailed map that I've ever made to the computer:
the PANGEA POLICY! [Ed: I think that should be POLITICAL PANGAEA!]

beyond the formal play of bringing administrative divisions on the ancient continental shelf of Pangea, there are theoretical implications (or metaphysical) in achieving this map:

Unite the world in a single piece of land represents a return to the technical support of the planet, to the technical support of the human race, in spite of the divisions that are so convenient to our leaders!

and so the United States find themselves in front of the muzzle all Arabs, while to the south directly border with both Cuba and Colombia!

We Europeans instead we are Africa at home at last. Just to thousands of deaths in the sea to get to Europe, now we get there by bike!

Still, African Americans finally rejoin their toto African cousins ​​and they can go to visit by bus.

Not only that, the Moroccans eventually portanno go to Quebec on foot!

It was time!

The world is one.
The humanity is a [Ed: one]
Viva Pangaea politics!

More here (Italian blog post):

Image (bigger pic):
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Scenic British Pub Crawls

Ten of Britain's top Nature writers share their twenty favourite Autumn walks and the necessary refreshment establishments in this article from +The Guardian.

It should be noted that thanks to the recent fall in the value of the Pound, Britain is a bargain for a lot of its visitors at the moment

Reaching the Craven Arms from the village of Grassington is akin to drinking a neat shot of the dales. Cross the river by the photogenic Linton Falls before climbing up to the gorgeous hamlet of Thorpe through fields threaded with dry-stone walls. Carry on through meadows where lapwings “pee-wit” and a stray foot may startle a hare into pulsing flight, to reach Burnsall and what has to be the most photographed bridge in the dales. Cross the river and follows signs for Appletreewick, and find the Craven Arms close to the Mock Beggar Hall, an old monastic grange that testifies to the village’s connection to nearby Bolton Abbey. Below the pub is a fantastic wild swimming spot.

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Image by TJBlackwell:
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Planet Earth 2.0

In case you missed the news, an official trailer for Planet Earth II with +Sir David Attenborough was just released by the BBC and thanks to successful presales you may well be able to find this new six part Ultra High Definition series on a large screen TV in your country.  

The six-part natural history series, narrated by Sir David Attenborough, has been licensed to Radio and Television Slovakia (Slovakia), Telefonica (Spain), TVP (Poland), along with Japanese broadcaster NHK, who will be an ‘in association with’ partner in Japan. The series will be shown on BBC Earth channels in South Africa, The Nordics, Central and Eastern Europe and Poland.

These join previously announced sales to SVT (Sweden) and DR (Denmark), and Mediaset, an ‘in association with’ partner in Italy. A BBC Studios production, Planet Earth II is co-produced by BBC America (US), ZDF (Germany) and France Télévisions.

A world premiere of Planet Earth II will be held at Mipcom on 18th October (Auditorium K, Level 4, 13:30 – 14:45) with an introduction from Mike Gunton, Creative Director of Factual and the Natural History Unit, and BBC Producer Elizabeth White. Following the premiere, delegates will be amongst the first to have an opportunity to see an enchanting scene from Ocean (6 x 50’), a series that builds on the BBC’s reputation for underwater film-making, epitomized by 2001’s multi award-winning Blue Planet.

More here (press release):

Shot in UHD, the epic scale of this series is second to none. Using the latest camera stabilisation, remote recording and aerial drone technology, we take the audience closer to nature and allow you to experience the wilderness as if you were there. Combining dramatic animal behaviour and incredible wildlife spectacle, Planet Earth II promises to give you the most immersive wildlife documentary experience to date.

More here (early press release):

10 years ago Planet Earth changed our view of the world. Now we take you closer than ever before. This is life in all its wonder. This is Planet Earth II.

A decade ago, the landmark television series Planet Earth redefined natural history filmmaking, giving us the ultimate portrait of life on Earth. Planet Earth II, narrated by Sir David Attenborough, will reveal our planet from a completely new perspective, using significant advances in both filming technology and our understanding of the natural world.

And if you are not excited enough already it features an original score by legendary composer Hans Zimmer.

Video (YT ~ 3mins.):

Mipcom 2016 Japan:

Image: by Hulivili
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Winnie-the-Pooh 90th Anniversary!

On this day, ninety years ago (1926/10/14) the first book of stories featuring Winnie-the-Pooh was published. The very first mention of the now famous bear, however, was in 1924 in a poem and tale published in a newspaper, and then in a book of poems called When We Were Very Young.

The BBC is marking the event with a delightful reading (with appropriate voices) by Alan Bennett. His performance is available internationally online for about a month. (Episode 1 has 26 days left online.)

Winnie-the-Pooh has given delight to generations of children and adults. The book was first published on 14th October 1926, though the bear 'of very little brain' had previously featured in a poem and a tale in a newspaper. His success has long continued through theatre, TV and film.

The honey-loving hero is styled on the teddy bear of the author's son and his co-stars, like Piglet, Eeyore and Tigger, are based on the rest of Christopher Robin Milne's own soft toys.

You may have heard of Dudley Moore and Peter Cooke but have you heard of their contemporary, the equally brilliant and funny playwright, screenwriter, actor and author, Alan Bennett?

Here, Alan Bennett, in his own inimitable fashion, reads an adaptation for radio of Winnie-the-Pooh, in five digestible fifteen minute episodes.

Listen here:
(Stream internationally or play in the global radio iPlayer

Winnie-the-Pooh (Wikip):

A. A. Milne (Wikip):

Alan Bennett (Wikip):

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Canadian bear.

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Kevin Clift's profile photoAnn Tuckley's profile photo
Thank you for the 1+ Kevin.
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Alcator C-Mod End of Life

A team of scientists and technologists from MIT's Plasma Science and Fusion Center, led by Professor Ian Hutchinson, answered questions from people like you, about Fusion Energy and the now defunct Alcator C-Mod tokamak, with interesting and insightful answers, and plenty of links for extra information during a recent Reddit AMA (Ask Me Anything).

Hi Reddit, we’re scientists working in the Plasma Science and Fusion Center at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Last time we were here, redditors helped to extend the life of our tokamak, Alcator C-Mod, to FY2016. This time we are here because we set a world record plasma pressure in Alcator C-Mod on our last day of operation! While C-Mod’s shutdown is definitely a loss to our community of scientists, we’re now turning our attention to the next generation of fusion reactors. We’re particularly excited because we’ve begun to work with high temperature superconductors to design much smaller fusion reactors than ever before, opening up the “high-field approach” to fusion.

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Video (YT ~3 mins.(spherical view)):

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Alcator C-Mod (Wikip):

Movitz Flowerhill's profile photo
Wonder if it's hot? Maybe 150 C?
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Kevin Clift

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Free Publications
Courtesy of the EU and its taxpayers!

You can download thousands of scientific, technical and other publications for free from the EU bookshop. They are available in most European languages!

For a small fee they can often even send you a pre-printed or printed-on-demand hardcopy.

For example...

Research EU (current issue):

Research EU (back Issues):

There are many, many more publications...

Scientific and technical research (20 377)

    Research policy and organisation (3 410)
    Industrial research and development (4 262)
    Information technology and telecommunications (2 683)
    Medical and biological research (1 360)
    Food technology and food safety (780)
    Energy research (2 390)
    Environmental research (2 428)
    Agricultural and fisheries research (1 103)
    Earth sciences research (404)
    Space research (123)
    Social sciences research (615)
You can also find colouring-in and other children's publications, and maps, atlases, posters, magazines, materials for teachers and students, as well as the more nitty-gritty EU documents like treaties, information on the refugee crisis and reports.

Even more here (EU Bookshop):
Danielle Lonnon's profile photoMarisa Arjones's profile photoKevin Clift's profile photoDuane Shriver's profile photo
Thanks for the update great
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Art and Science

+Paul Wear produces a rare blend of Art and Science starting with his photographs of everyday objects viewed from a unique perspective and then photo-manipulated, artistically composed and imbued with surrealist colour.

Paul’s photographic composition style defines his artistry within this medium. His photographs include a multitude of objects which are abundantly available and yet are of little artistic value when viewed from a distance. The design of hairline cracks on a sidewalk or a close up of peeling paint on an aging wall, unexpectedly become objets d'art in his photographs. Paul is a master of hidden composition; his artwork is a visual journey of color, ripe with strong graphic lines and forced perspectives that draw one’s eye to discover the entirety of each piece. Although open to interpretation, Paul’s art reflects his own unique perspective of the world.

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Kevin Clift

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Calendar for the Curious
by +Ricardo Nuno Silva 

The ever-energetic Ricardo has made a poster-based monthly calendar (with regular updates) showing a selection of the hundreds of interesting geeky and techie events, people and projects he's following. If he gets sufficient interest from you he may offer this calendar for direct integration into your calendar system.

The calendar provides dates, times, URLs (inc. photos, videos, research, product, etc.), hashtags, and more.

Sign up below to express interest.

He says...

Yes, I'm considering that a critical requirement, allowing a user to integrate selected events in a personal calendar (like Google Calendar, iCal, Outlook Calendar or similar).

Right now, I'm releasing this new "monthly poster" format and waiting for reactions and feedback. In the first series of tests, one year ago, I tried the "daily posts" format, as you might recall.

If I'm fortunate enough to get a good level of engagement, I'll press on with the CuriCal project adding more features and platforms :)

As a side note, I've plenty of data, as I've been tracking a few hundred events and projects in the last 3 years including:

space missions
innovative/disruptive tech
product/books/movies launches
influential people, companies and organizations

For now, I'm inviting curious minds interested in this kind of calendar to subscribe to follow the project at: .

See update:

More here (and image):
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Thank you, +Kevin Clift, once more for your support.
Despite very frequent posts on Twitter on these last few days with #CuriCal updates, I'm really sorry to note that engagement concerning #CuriCal remains very weak.

I was hoping for just a share/retweet from one or two high-profile influencers on my social networks to get this off the ground, but it didn't happen.

I'll probably suspend this project, and just continue to curate the links for myself. I've been really busy this month keeping #CuriCal updated and it seems all that effort is going nowhere.

I even asked some Twitter editors what they'd like in a calendar like this (so that I could improve it), but didn't get any feedback.

"If you built it, they will come." Well, they didn't :)
So, maybe it wasn't such a great idea after all ;)
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River Basins Europe

Geographer Robert Szucs from Birmingham, England, made a rather colourful map of how the rivers of Europe drain and he says...

Map made mostly with the open-source QGIS software. Data: European Environment Agency (EEA). 2012. EEA Catchments and Rivers Network System (ECRINS)

High resolution map of Europe's 1.2 million streams and rivers in beautiful rainbow colours, divided into almost 8000 catchment areas. It shows Strahler Stream Order Classification. The higher the stream order, the thicker the line. I really like this map. There were a few technical challenges along the way, but I think it came out allright. :)

More here (other maps and high-res downloads (small fee)):

These numbers were first developed in hydrology by Robert E. Horton (1945) and Arthur Newell Strahler (1952, 1957); in this application, they are referred to as the Strahler stream order and are used to define stream size based on a hierarchy of tributaries. They also arise in the analysis of L-systems and of hierarchical biological structures such as (biological) trees and animal respiratory and circulatory systems, in register allocation for compilation of high-level programming languages and in the analysis of social networks. Alternative stream ordering systems have been developed by Shreve and Hodgkinson et al.

Strahler Number (Wikip):

Kevin Clift's profile photoJoe Jansen's profile photo
Thanks for the clear direction to the links. Kind of you to answer.
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Now that's clever!

And that's because it's simple and effective. The Dutch have a word for it (+Peter Vogel might know it), and it involves re-training ourselves. But if the world's driver training schools adopted it as a #safety options, future generations of cyclists would be grateful.
Bicycle lanes can be a boon for cyclists but they can also land riders in the “door zone,” a dangerous area sandwiched between primary vehicle lanes and parked cars. In the long term, cities may need to continue designing better solutions to accommodate bicyclists, but in the meantime: drivers could learn a thing or two
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Randall Lee Reetz's profile photoHarald Hanche-Olsen's profile photo
One infrastructure hack, apart from the obvious one of better separated bike lanes, would be to move the interior handle on car doors back in order to make the Dutch reach the most natural way to get at it. I doubt that car manufacturers will do that voluntarily, though.
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Kevin's Collections
Family medical responsibilities
  • 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
Map of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has livedMap of the places this user has lived
Cupertino, California, USA - Minneapolis/St. Paul, Minnesota, USA - Reading, England - London, England - Southampton, England - Nürnberg, Germany - Basingstoke, England
  • University of Southampton
    B.Sc. Mathematics, 1973 - 1976
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