Today’s rhetoric that the nation single-handedly defeated Nazism does disservice to the thousands of soldiers from the empire and fuels dangerous ideas of British superiority by In the spring of 1940 Winston Churchill gave three landmark parliamentary speeches, in close succession.
The lure of bioengineering is obvious but we should be wary of bugs
A few days ago, on my way to a discussion in the exquisite little McCrum theatre, which is hidden away in the centre of Cambridge, I had to pass through the courtyard of the Eagle pub in Bene’t Street. As I did so, I suddenly remembered that this is the hostelry where, on 28 February 1953, Francis Crick, rushing in from the nearby Cavendish Lab, announced to astonished lunchers that he and James Watson had discovered the secret of life. (They had just unveiled their double-helix model of the DNA molecule to colleagues in the laboratory; there’s now a blue plaque on the wall marking the moment.)
As a graduate student in the late 1960s, I knew the pub well because it was where some of my geeky friends from the Computer Lab, then located in the centre of town, used to gather. We talked about a lot of things then, but one thing that never really crossed our minds was that there might be a connection between what Crick and Watson had done in 1953 and the software that many of us were struggling to write for our experiments or dissertations.
IS IT really so impossible for us all to forget our differences over Brexit and just get along? Find out: A) It might be divisive but we had a referendum in 2016, the decision is made and as a country we have no option but to accept that. Let’s have a drink and forget about it.
It’s possible the prime minister had mistaken them for nurses and surgeons, which as we know look uncannily cameras and tripods
Read in the Independent
In the Indian state of Assam, the authorities are building detention camps for “illegal immigrants”, most of whom are Indian citizens. In South Africa, hundreds of Nigerian workers have been airlifted home as anti-migrant violence spirals out of control.
The financier’s links to the institution are symptoms of a deep malaise in big tech
In the parallel moral universe known as the tech industry, the MIT media lab was Valhalla. “The engineers, designers, scientists and physicians who constitute the two dozen research groups housed there,” burbled the Atlantic in a profile of what it called the Idea Factory, “work in what may be the world’s most interesting, most hyper-interdisciplinary thinktank.” It has apparently been responsible for a host of groundbreaking innovations including “the technology behind the Kindle and Guitar Hero” (I am not making this up) and its researchers “end up pollinating other projects with insights and ideas, within a hive of serendipitous collaboration”.
That was written in 2011. In the last two weeks, we have discovered that some of this groundbreaking work was funded by Jeffrey Epstein, the financial wizard who took his own life rather than face prosecution for sex trafficking and other crimes. It should be pointed out that most of those researchers were entirely unaware of who was funding their work and some of them have been very upset by learning the truth. Their distress is intensified by the discovery that their ignorance was not accidental.
News that the children’s TV character Fireman Sam is to be dropped as Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue’s mascot – for not seeming inclusive enough to girls who might wish to join the service – has provoked the usual adult males into howls of airtime.
The first and most obvious is this. If you say you are a Remainer, or if you understand the nightmare that No Deal will create, or want to end the threat to democracy this government is, you have to vote tactically. The converse is also true.
For the first time in our history, we have a prime minister whom the far right regard as their leader. Last Saturday, far-right thugs at a demonstration in Westminster lunged at remainer and leftwing activists as they chanted, “We’ve got a lamppost just for you” and, “We love you, Boris”.
Fully 12 seconds had elapsed before the prime minister began lying, which might not seem like much, but he smashed his personal best.