I’ve finally finished reading a box-set SF trilogy given me a while ago by a friend.  The Void trilogy by Peter F Hamilton (a British writer apparently of some renown) is really one long story in three volumes, but is part of an overall sequence...


Reasons for spring (or other) cleaning

Did anyone make a New Year’s Resolution this year to keep their house, office or computer files cleaner or tidier?  I don’t want to discourage you if you have. As everyone who visits my house probably guesses, I have been conducting a scientific experiment for some...



Greetings once again. Being a very privileged person, I have just returned from 10 days in California (husband at scientific convention in San Diego; wife along for the ride).  I do not intend to describe the trip here – the place for that is Facebook, face-to-face,...


On art, history and the story, by Ian S

The second guest on the blog is Ian Storer.  All the pictures on the site that are not maps or photographs are his work (see the World, Books and SWM sections).  A visit to his website ( displays more of his artwork in drawing and...


The Bible, 1900 years on (Questions 2)

My mother, Ursula Hall, who was a historian, wrote about St Andrew and his somewhat tenuous connection to Scotland.  In an unpublished work she commented on the rapid spread of the Christian church in the decades after its founding.  “These [the apostles] were the men...