Archive for the ‘forensics’ Category

skeletonThe Anatomage Table is the most technologically advanced anatomy visualization system for anatomy education and is being adopted by many of the world’s leading medical schools and institutions. Jack Choi lectures on the development of the table and some of the remarkable features it displays. St Mary’s Hospital in London has become the first hospital in Europe to purchase a digital anatomy table. It is changing the way surgeons teach anatomy, and even how they plan real operations.

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GlasgowGlasgow City of Science is a partnership of over 50 organisations including Glasgow City Council, Glasgow Life, universities, Glasgow School of Art, colleges, research pools and local industry. Their mission, “To inspire the curious, stimulate the creative, empower the wise and connect those with passion”, determines that their site has something for everyone with an interest in any aspect of science. Whether you want to keep up to date with current developments, or sign up for one of their Science Walks, the site has something for you.

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Frustrated at reading crime novels which are littered with scientific inaccuracies? The BBC reports that the Washington Academy of Sciences (WAS) has come up with a plan to solve all that. WAS has established a seal of approval for books with the correct scientific facts.

“WAS President Jim Cole says many people encounter science through fiction and TV shows such as CSI, which can give the impression that technology can solve any crime.

“Science as it’s generally perceived by the public is not necessarily correct science,” he says.

“With self-publishing on the internet, I think this is going to be a huge issue in the future – about what’s real and what’s not real.””

Will a scientific seal of approval help solve the problem? And will scientists be able to agree on what is “correct” science?

Crime Scene Tape

Image courtesy of Null Value via Flickr




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There is an informative article in the current edition of the Public Service Review: European Science and Technology on attempts at applying uniform rules across Europe regarding various aspects of forensic work. Following a Polish forensic initiative the aim is to create by 2020 a European Forensic Science Area, where the forensic processes for the collection, processing, use and delivery of forensic data are based on equivalent minimum forensic science standards.

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Interesting article from the BBC about the history of children’s chemistry sets.

“The first chemistry sets for children included dangerous substances like uranium dust and sodium cyanide, but all that has changed.

Talk to people of a certain age about chemistry sets and a nostalgic glaze comes over their eyes.

Stories of creating explosions in garden sheds and burning holes in tables are told and childhood is remembered as a mischievous adventure.”

Check out the Radio 4 documentary with Dr Kat Arney on Wednesday 1st Aug at 9pm, or listen to it later on iPlayer. Dr Arney looks at the declining popularity of chemistry sets in recent years and the parallel decline in practical chemistry experiments in the classroom. Has this made chemistry less appealing to pupils as a subject?

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A report by Dame Janet Finch argues that there is a powerful “moral” case for publicly funded research to be freely available. BBC reporter Pallab Ghosh provides a good summary of where we are at the moment, and the cases for and against the expansion of free full-text access to publicly funded research.

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Learn.Genetics delivers educational materials on genetics, bioscience and health topics. They are designed to be used by students, teachers and members of the public. The materials meet selected US education standards for science and health. Learn.Genetics website is one of the most widely-disseminated education sites in the world. It is an activity-rich approach to science.

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A good article in Chemistry World on how microfluidic technology is speeding up the delivery of DNA fingerprinting. This could have revolutionary implications for forensic laboratories that are struggling in these financially challenging times. The library subscribes to Chemistry World and it is available on-line (via SFX) as well as in print.

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Photograph of lab bench with bottles of chemicals, droppers, etc.Bioscience Horizons publishes research papers from undergraduate bioscientists based at UK or Republic of Ireland universities.  The papers are written by students about their final year research projects.

The journal is freely available online from Oxford University Press.

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An unusually large number of science-related publications were produced by the Holyrood and Westminster governments in March.  Here is a selection:

Biological Sciences/Environmental and Waste Management

Gamebirds: Code of Practice for the Welfare of Gamebirds Reared for Sporting Purposes.

Covers rearing, transportation and release of gamebirds.

2010 Review of Goose Management Policy in Scotland.

Examines future strategies for goose management in Scotland.  (Geese can be considered an agricultural pest in some areas of Scotland, due to their grazing activity.)  Stakeholder responses and the Scottish Government’s response are also available online.

Statistical Publication Agriculture Series: Results from 2010 December Agricultural Survey.

Our Rural Future: The Scottish Government’s response to the Speak Up for Rural Scotland consultation.

Marine and Freshwater policy documents.

Scotland’s National Marine Plan aims to provide “a planning framework to manage competing demands for the use of the sea whilst protecting the marine environment”.

 CAMERAS: Focus on Freshwater Science.

“The Co-ordinated Agenda for Marine, Environment and Rural Affairs Science (CAMERAS) was established to ensure that Scotland’s marine, environment and rural science supports delivery of the Scottish Government’s single purpose, ‘to create a more successful country, with opportunities for all of Scotland to flourish, through increasing sustainable economic growth’.”

Consultation on Seal Haul-out Sites.

A haul-out site is a location on land where seals haul themselves out to rest.  The Natural Environment Research Council can designate haul-out sites, which are considered suitable to protect seals from harassment.

Offshore wind energy

Blue Seas – Green Energy.  A Sectoral Marine Plan for Offshore Wind Energy in Scottish Territorial Waters.  Part A The Plan

This plan contains proposals for offshore wind energy development in Scottish Territorial Waters up to 2020 and beyond.  It should be read in conjunction with Part B Post Adoption Statement.

Other relevant publications include:



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