Category Archives: History

The joys of a Wikipedia edit-a-thon

Last week the Royal Society held a Wikipedia edit-a-thon to try and help redress the gender imbalance in Wikipedia’s coverage of biographies of scientists. Twenty volunteers gathered in the library of the Royal Society for a few hours to learn … Continue reading

Posted in History, Writing | Tagged | 4 Comments

A look back at the future

I am indebted to Dr R.A.C. for bringing to my attention a spoof exam paper drawn up by J.B.S. Haldane. Originally published in the journal Brighter Biochemistry (“the illustrated journal of the Biochemical Laboratory, Cambridge”), the paper was republished in Trends in … Continue reading

Posted in History, Uncategorized | Tagged , , | 3 Comments

A snapshot of our collection – history

Earlier this month I hosted a meeting of CHILL. It is a group of independent health libraries which meets three times a year in the premises of one or other of the members. The meetings are an opportunity to share … Continue reading

Posted in History, Libraries and librarians | 2 Comments

Hawking history

It was good to hear the reports of Stephen Hawking’s speech at his 70th birthday celebrations at the weekend. The Independent ran the story under the headline “I owe it all to my father” and noted that Hawking spoke movingly … Continue reading

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The Royal Society Library

Librarians love to snoop round other libraries, looking for new ideas and taking inspiration from different institutions and their collections. I must confess that sometimes I find such visits a bit tedious but I really enjoyed my latest visit. Last … Continue reading

Posted in History, Libraries and librarians | 4 Comments

Dusty old data

Every now and then I am reminded that, once upon a time, I did a chemistry degree. I still feel some warmth towards the subject, though I have forgotten most of what I learnt. I still remember some of my … Continue reading

Posted in History, Research data | 5 Comments

Sir Charles Harington (1897-1972)

I have been working for a few weeks to put together some posters for a small internal exhibition about Charles Harington, one of our past directors.  I hope it might be of interest to a wider audience, so I have … Continue reading

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Serendipity luckydippery

Sri Lanka is a beautiful country, with tropical beaches, lush hill country, tea plantations, spice gardens and a fiery cuisine.  The Arabic name for the island was Serendib, “from the Sanskrit Simhaladvipa which literally translates to “Dwelling-Place-of-Lions Island”  (thankyou, Wikipedia). … Continue reading

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A couple of historical exhibitions

Further to my recent musings about Walter Morley Fletcher, I was interested to see a couple of exhibitions advertised, both in London. The Royal Society have mounted an exhibition Frederick Gowland Hopkins and the Chemistry of Life, to mark the … Continue reading

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Walter Morley Fletcher

The lecture hall in my Institute dates back to the 1930s. It has a simple design with excellent acoustics, typical of its era. It is called the Fletcher Memorial Hall, which begs the question – who he? Just outside the … Continue reading

Posted in History, Research Councils | 10 Comments