10 May 2005


2005 - The Year of Physics : In 1905, Albert Einstein submitted five papers for publication in Annalen der Physik, covering three topics - Brownian motion, the special theory of relativity and the photoelectric effect. Although diverse in subject, these contributions are landmarks in their field and testament to Einstein's genius. To honour their centenary, 2005 has been designated 'World Year of Physics'.

Saturn's pock-marked moon Phoebe could be a comet that was captured by the gravity of the ringed planet. Data from the Cassini spacecraft suggests it originated in the frozen Kuiper Belt - a reservoir for comets. The tiny satellite is very different in its chemical composition to Saturn's larger moons and circles the planet in the opposite direction.

Some tree frogs have a nose for danger, even before they have hatched. The results of a new study suggest that the creatures can detect the vibrations from a predator and hatch early in order to escape.

Red flag on responsible parenting - Researchers at the University of Aberdeen have found 23 girls under 13 years of age being prescribed the contraceptive Pill - two were under 10. The researchers looked at data from GP practices and family planning clinics in Scotland. British medical guidelines suggest that girls of any age can be given the pill, as long as they are thought to be mature enough. However, in Scotland, having sex with a child aged under 13 is classified as statutory rape.

A mystery disease killing people in Delhi has been identified as meningitis. So far 15 people have died and 199 cases reported. However, the Government has denied that there is an epidemic. In the meantime, the disease seems to have reached Jaipur, where a child was hospitalized with the disease

Picked up A Walk in the Woods (Bill Bryson), For Whom the Bell Tolls / To Have and Have Not (Hemingway) and The Hot Zone (Richard Preston) on Saturday. Should keep me occupied for sometime now.

Weekend watch : No Way out - rerun, saw it many years ago (BG, remember ?) and Random Hearts (by Sydney Pollack) - disappointing, wasted potential

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