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The best physics sites of 2010

November 16, 2010 1 comment

Since leaving school I have left science far, far, behind and beyond (into the realms of space) and have put all of my energy and attention into my studies of the media, english language and drama. However, whilst browsing the web today, I starting burning a new flame (love) for physics.

The physics.org web awards 2010 awards the best physics websites available to readers on the internet. The websites were awarded in different categories ranging from best blog to best podcast. The awards were nominated by the general public and a panel of judges. Each website uses unique angles and perspectives to explain and create excitement about physics (accessible for all).

Have a look at the winners list to explore the different winning websites. These are my three top favourite from the winners:

  • Pop Sci – this online magazine discusses five distinct areas: gadgets, cars, science technology and DIY. It is easily accessible and has interesting articles. An article that caught my attention today was a virtual nightclub being sold for just over half a million dollars? Really, I hear you say. Yes.
  • New Scientist – a website offering questions and answers about everyday science. This website has everything and anything you could want to know.
  • S-cool revision – if you need to brush up on your GCSE and A-level science this website is ideal. It may come in handy if your children need help with homework or coursework. Be the well-informed scientist (parent) you have always wanted to be!

Paying our way to a lighter future

November 16, 2010 4 comments

The government is considering taxing fatty foods in order to reduce obesity. The BBC emphasise the increase of obese people in the last twenty years and that our country can not ignore this warning. A fatty good tax, is a (needed) wake up call and signal to society that change needs to happen, and soon. As quoted from the BBC article :

“Would putting up the price of junk food – with its high sugar and fat content – cut these rising obesity rates in the same way as a tax on cigarettes – vigorously contested by the tobacco industry at the time – has helped reduce smoking?”

Last night, Panorama aired a documentary, ‘Fat Tax’, with reporter Shelley Jofre, discussing the tax being enforced and the positive effects. As discussed by Private Healthcare the programme did not offer a new or fresh angle to obesity, however, it was informative but not necessarily inspiring for all viewers.

I think it is important to address the issue of obesity but there are a lot of unanswered questions with this approach. Who would decide what is ‘fatty food’ exactly? In order for effective taxing on ‘fatty foods’ the public and governing body would need to define what is ‘fatty food’. This term has been used continuously and repeatedly by media organisations and I for one feel it has lost a lot of value, content and effect. In a supermarket you may have heard something along these lines, “Oh no I am not eating that. That’s junk food. Yuk. It’s fatty food”. I feel there is a need to remind and update the meaning behind the phrase of ‘fatty food’ in order for us to progress as a healthy eating nation.

I feel this tax is forgetting a key aspect in battling obesity. Yes you guessed correctly. Exercise. We need to promote and encourage physical exercise in our lives and different lifestyles. Whether it is half an hours yoga in a morning, to participating in a particular sport, jogging every couple of nights, joining a club or society or attending a dance class. There needs to be more focus on media hype and publicity on the positive aspects on combatting obesity. Surely, a positive approach to such a negatively discussed issue would motivate people?

So don’t starve me of information now, as I need to know, would you pay a little bit extra for that one slice of chocolate cake? So rich, dark and velvety that simple melts on your tongue. A moment on the lips a lifetime on the hips. And also on the bank debt. Or would you (as they hope), seek a healthier alternative and a quick fix to a ‘better’ body?

See the full Panorama ‘Tax the Fat’ programme

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