Old News

Santa in Space -- Saturday, December 22, 2001
Here's a story about Santa arriving at the space station. Don't pay any attention to all their denials, it's really a true story. NASA has to make a conspiracy out of everything otherwise they run out of funding :) This holiday story tells about a visit by Santa to the International Space Station (ISS), where he has to deal with uncooperative tinsel, floating cookie crumbs, and a space-sick reindeer.

LotR One Week Countdown -- Thursday, December 13, 2001
Only one week to go before the coolest movie in existence arrives in New Zealand. Fellowship of the Ring, part one of the Lord of the Rings saga, will be opening on December 20 here in New Zealand. The NZ Herald has compiled some of the reviews, the good and the bad, that have been written about it so far.

Freedom in Which Faith? -- Wednesday, December 12, 2001
Here's an interesting article by Franklin Graham, son of the famous american christian evangelist, Billy Graham. Franklin is both a christian minister and the leader of several large foreign aid programmes. He talks here about some of the problems faced by non-muslims in most of the muslim countries around the world.

School's Out! -- Tuesday, December 11, 2001
Yup, time to sing songs about all going on a summer holiday. Many thanks for visiting us over the course of the year. Make sure you don't forget about DeepScience cos next year is going to rock.

In other news, Scrapheap Challenge is going to be rescheduled at a more decent time of day. Scrapheap Challenge will be moving to 8.10pm on Sundays (Prime TV) from 23 December.

You may be interested in having a quick look at the article and photo on RedR NZ which appeared in the NZ Herald last Saturday morning. It is now on the NZ Herald website. Who is that guy anyway?

Hot Air Balloons are Back -- Sunday, November 25, 2001
Watch the sky this week as our annual hot hair ... sorry, our annual hot air balloon competition gets under way. The classes that look as if they are participating will be 10Tech, 9PS, 9TG, and possibly 9TM.

In other news, a reminder that TONIGHT is the night for SCRAPHEAP challenge again!!! Don't forget to tune in at 9:35 (what a stupid time) to Prime TV. Also, later in the week is a very cool programme on the making of The Lord of the Rings, Thursday, 7:30pm, TV2.

PAIA Video Complete -- Friday, November 23, 2001
If you've been waiting for your pre-ordered copy of Paia then you can pick them up from the student center. $14 for the video, $15 if you want the flashy colour cover as well. If you didn't pre-order then you may, just may, be able to get a copy directly from me. Oh yes, and it's very very good :)

Scrapheap Challenge Starts -- Tuesday, November 14, 2001
This note just in, direct from Prime TV:

I can confirm that Series 4 will be screening on Sundays at 9.35pm from 25 November. Enjoy!

Kind Regards
Assistant Programmer
Prime Television New Zealand Ltd

Scrapheap Challenge Returning -- Friday, October 26, 2001
This news just in! We'll keep you updated.

Hi Trevor,
Just to keep you posted, the 2001 series is coming very very soon to Prime. I'll let you know the date in a week or so. Cheers
Assistant Programmer
Prime Television New Zealand Ltd

Faith and Science Work Together -- Tuesday, October 23, 2001
The Washington Times has another interesting article outlining how scientists believe in God.

"Mr. Phillips, the Nobel physicist, attends Fairhaven United Methodist Church in Gaithersburg because he takes the deity personally. "Einstein's god, who is really just the laws of nature, is not for me," he said. "I'm strongly of the conviction that God is personal, and this is the foundation of my faith."

Added Another One -- Thursday, October 18, 2001
Another pic on the funny page. And Folding@home has put out the newest version of the folding software. Go to our folding page and read how to help the world (and boost our folding statistics :)

Don't Believe It -- Monday, October 15, 2001 (edited 9:50pm)
Before you resend crazy e-mail info about the World Trade Center attack, think again. There's a lot of reallllly crazy and totally fake stories going around so don't be gullible, don't freak out, and be discerning. ++ I've also added a new "funny" page for stuff related to the terrorists. Sometimes the best way to fight them is to laugh at them.

Ozone Holes -- Friday, October 12, 2001
The cause of ozone holes in the upper atmosphere may still be only natural seasonal fluctuations. It might, however, be caused by industrial pollution. But if that was the case how come the ozone hole is in the southern hemisphere and not in the northern artic area? After all, the north is where all the major polluting countries are. Why? If you can wade through all the gobbledegook, here's the full story at nasa.

Back to School -- Sunday, October 7, 2001
Well, that was two wonderful weeks of working on various projects but now it's back to school. Don't forget, we've got daylight savings now so wake-up time is an hour earlier. Although you probably realised that when arriving at church just in time to find everybody leaving. News from PRIME TV is that we'll be seeing the latest edition of Scrapheap Challenge around November - it's gonna be good!

Join the Folding! -- Saturday, September 23, 2001
Wired magazine has published an article talking about the protein folding project that we are involved in. Read the article then go to our folding page to see what to do to help out.

Echelon is Out There -- Monday, September 17, 2001
The super secret spy network called Echelon is up the noses of the European Union. What is Echelon? That's the spy base that Havoc and Newsboy got inside. They jumped around, looked through the windows, and got zapped on the electric fence when they tried to leave. Apparently it's all illegal and you can read about it at The Register.

1:00 am -- Wednesday, September 12, 2001
Some pictures and poems. Also some short messages from the younger students of James Cook High School, New Zealand, to those affected by the tragedy in the USA.

Faked Moon Landing? -- Monday, September 4, 2001
Ok, so that documentary appeared again. You know, the one where they make out that all the astronauts that landed on the moon were all lying. Well, it would be harder to make a fake moon landing than to accomplish the real one ok??!! If you're wanting some of the reasons why the "documentary" was a load of codswallop (whatever that is) then NASA has a nice article about it as well as more in depth links. Yes, we posted this before but there you go (March 31 entry).

Computer Game Kills -- Wednesday, August 29, 2001
A Thai 22 year old has apparently died from playing Half-Life Counterstrike. He was addicted and ended up with tension and fatigue leading to a heart attack actually during an all night gaming session. Hmmm, what can we learn from that?

Protein Folding Project -- Monday, August 27, 2001
DeepScience has gone into the protein folding project with Stanford University and the www.overclockers.com folding team. Check out the statistics and what it's all about on our new page. Also PLEASE NOTE the new time for Scrapheap Challenge at 6pm not 7:30pm. I have no idea why they changed the time for the show without telling anyone and right in the middle of the 10 week series! Ignorance is not bliss.

Sun Goes Bang! -- Sunday, August 26, 2001
The most powerful solar flare since April erupted on the Sun last night. The X5-class explosion hurled a bright coronal mass ejection into space and triggered a strong radio blackout on the sunlit side of Earth. Visit spaceweather.com for more information, images and updates.

Human Cloning, the Coming Evil -- Monday, August 13, 2001
The Washington Times has posted a very interesting article which is all about cloning, how it is done, and some of the problems that make it a very bad, bad, bad thing to try and do on humans. Well, Hitler would have loved the idea wouldn't he? It's a great article and is reproduced unchanged here with thanks to the Washington Times.

Use a Firewall -- Thursday, August 9, 2001
If you have a computer and you use the internet then you need to get some kind of firewall. That's a way of stopping people hacking into your computer and a way of stopping programs on your computer from accessing the internet without you knowing about it. Want the good news? There are plenty of good software firewalls out there which are totally free and very small to download. First you can see how vulnerable your computer is to internet probing via Gibson Research Associates test page. And then read the results of his tests of various Firewalls. The free ones work just as well apparently.

Hmmmm, more power -- Tuesday, August 7, 2001
It seems amazing that only 20 years ago (1981) the coolest computer out there was the awe inspiring ZX81. The ZX81 came with 1000 Bytes of memory. Yes, one thousand bytes to play with. Nowadays the standard is 128,000,000 Bytes. Hmmm, the ZX81 was, well, it was really slow. The latest PC is sitting at 1.4GHz or 1,400,000,000 Hz. Now there's a thought... why is it a Gigahertz and not a Billahertz? And more to the point, is it true that the latest Dual 800MHz Mac beats all the other PC's hands down?

"He was... a legend" -- Thursday, August 10, 2000
Yes, the date is the right one. Here's a post from one year ago. You may have seen the excellent documentary by Rob Harley that screened on TV One this evening. No one wants to live in the past except for the wonderful lessons we can learn from it. I think this story was, indeed, something we can learn from. Phil may not have been right all the time but he was a man of principle - hold to your beliefs and don't be bullied into doing anything against them.

DOCUMENTARY NEW ZEALAND Sox Up. The last dramatic year in the life of NZ's most provocative high school principal, Phil Rafills, of Auckland's Avondale College. Documentary makers Rob Harley and Linda Gollan were allowed to film an intimate portrait of Raffill's struggle with leukaemia, his bid to get into parliament even while terminally ill, and the aftermath of a bruising encounter between protestors just a couple of months before he became gravely ill.

From last year: 10:54pm - Phil Raffills, a man of faith, courage, tenacity. Starting in education as a science teacher, Phil impacted countless lives with his zest for life and the strength of his convictions. DeepScience salutes Phil Raffills.

Skate Madness -- Tuesday, July 31, 2001
Alrighty then, here's some short skateboard movies that show how to do the moves. Shot on location today.

Lots of Pictures -- Monday, July 30, 2001
I completely forgot about a whole bunch of photos sitting in the camera from last year. Well, for your viewing amusement you can check out the pictures taken towards the end of 2000. There's some ones from Dry Ice Day which are kinda smokey. Some body sculptures from last year's 9PS are kinda cool. There's the crazy senior physics class. And finally, there are the pics from the Simply Awesome Hot Air Balloon Competition.

210 GHz Processors? -- Monday, July 23, 2001
IBM has managed to get some very fast computer chips indeed. If this article is anything to go by we'll have 100 GHz computers in just two years. Good grief!

And the Emmy goes to... -- Thursday, July 13, 2001
Get ready to rumble! Prime TV is rescreening the most awesome show in existence, Scrapheap Challenge. Don't believe me? The American version has just been nominated for an Emmy award, wow. It's either that or Survivor I reckon. So fix up your TV cos DEMOLITION is this Saturday at 7:30pm!

Unwinding Life -- Tuesday, July 10, 2001
Overclockers.com have made a suggestion to those of you with lots of computer and not much to do with it. You may have heard of distributed computing. Well, that usually involves some mathematician somewhere trying to break a really ocmplicated code like RC5. The only way of doing it is just trying lots of combinations until you hit the right one. They break the problem into lots of smaller pieces and send the pieces to home computers via the internet. The only problem is that it's really no big deal if you break the code - it's not like you're saving lives or anything. Now for something better! Stanford University is getting home PCs to work on folding protein molecules to stop cancer (among other cool things). This is mostly for those of you with permanent internet connections but apparently it still works with a modem.

Independence Day -- Wednesday, July 4, 2001
July 4 is here and so is aphelion. Eh? That's when the Earth is at its greatest distance from the sun. It's all something to do with elliptical orbits (we don't go around the sun in a perfect circle). This is interesting for all kinds of reasons. A) Even though the Earth is further away from the sun, this is the time when the Earth is about 2 degrees centigrade hotter than normal B) Strictly speaking, Galilao was wrong about "the earth circling the sun." It's not a circle path but an ellipse with the sun sitting at one of the foci points. C) will they make another space alien movie about it? Well, for more info about A and B just follow the links. The answer to C is "yes" they will keep making movies about space aliens until the cows come home.

Making Waves -- Thursday, June 21, 2001
Our senior physics class is studying waves at the moment. Due to popular demand, some of the pictures from the filming have been put on the class page. There is also a number of web sites linked where you can investigate the topic via the wonders of java script animations.

Eclipse in Africa -- Wednesday, June 20, 2001
Only for the other side of the planet, the moon is going to pass between us and the sun on Thursday. Apparently the darkness will be enough to wake nocturnal animals and fill every hotel in the area. If you think that sounds strange and you want some more information along with some pretty graphics, check out the space weather site.

Kiwis are first to fly -- Tuesday, June 19, 2001
No, it wasn't the Wright Brothers in the USA. The first person in the world to maintain powered flight was none other than New Zealand's own Richard Pearse. Adversity is sometimes the mother of invention and Richard sure didn't have it easy flying across a paddock into a 12 foot high gorse bush back in March, 1903... ouch!

Kiwi Inventors -- Monday, June 18, 2001
Well, after continual problems with Windows 98 and 98SE, I spent about an hour on Saturday installing Windows ME. Apart from having a really stupid sounding name, Windows ME works like a dream. Very nice indeed so yay.

In about half an hour there will be a documentary on TV 1 which is about inventors in New Zealand. Should be very interesting.

Dust Makes Dust -- Wednesday, May 23, 2001
Well the folks at NASA have just found out something that I've known for ages. Dusty ground makes dusty weather. It doesn't rain much in the desert but it rains heaps in rainforests at the same latitude. If you want it to rain plant heaps of trees. Anyway, it's all very interesting.

BIG ENZ News -- Thursday, May 10, 2001
The New Zealand team application for Scrapheap Challenge is still gaining news attention with our appearance on the Engineers for Social Responsibility website. In other news DeepScienceAV is underway. DSAV is an audio and video project. Currently we're putting two music CD's together with artists from Greenlane Presbyterian Church and St John's Presbyterian.

Welcome Back -- Saturday, April 28, 2001
Hi there, long time no see. What happened? Well it was a combination of factors that resulted in the site not updating for a while. They included a holiday and the computer dying in a spectacular fashion. The most unfortunate bit of news I can share with you is that we were not sucessful in our application to be on Scrapheap Challenge. Hmmm, actually, that's probably why I havn't posted for a while, I've been remarkably down about it all. ;) Anyways, for those back at school it's term 2 so enjoy and work hard!

Moon Landing a Hoax? -- Saturday, March 31, 2001
Did NASA actually send humans to the Moon in the 1960's? Of course they did! But a recent TV program claimed the whole thing was faked! Many people are asking NASA about it, so go read the real story!

Teenage Sun Problems -- Thursday, March 29, 2001
Now that the MIR is safely fragmented all over the Pacific you might be interested in this little bit of space news from spaceweather.com

HUGE SUNSPOT: The largest sunspot in ten years is crossing the solar disk. The fast-growing spot, called AR9393, covers an area of the Sun equivalent to the total surface area of 13 Earths! Visit spaceweather.com to learn how this sunspot compares to others in history and how to safely observe it.

And here's that piccy of MIR zooming over Fiji

INCOMING!!! -- Saturday, March 17, 2001
That's no moon, that's a space station! MIR is on the way down and is scheduled to land in my backyard in just 5 days time. Time for Mir to eat earth dust and rather than have a completely random crash it's going to have an initiated random crash, ie. somewhere in the South Pacific (hey that's where New Zealand is!). All very exciting. Don't miss this great opportunity to see billions of dollars burn. Sunday morning 6am should see it zooming accross the northern sky. There's lots of websites with up to the date news as well.
New Zealand Herald
Auckland Observatory

Projectile Motion -- Monday, March 12, 2001
Senior physics is learning about cannons that fire cheese at the moment. Other things are golf balls, bombs, arrows, bullets, bananas, and maybe even the odd piano. There are lots of nice web sites out there with learning tools to help on this subject so we put them into a video. If you want to look at them on the web you'll find the list of links on the Physics page.

2000 Visitors to DeepScience -- Sunday, March 11, 2001
Many thanks to all the regular visitors at DeepScience. There's been added interest since the arrival of the BIG ENZ team. In addition to their video, DeepScience is currently working on two other movies. One is a teaching resource on the subject of waves, and the other is an amusing look at the James Cook sports day. Actually, I'm right in the middle of putting the JCHS web site together so all in all we're pretty busy.

Science and Maths Students Needed -- Monday, March 5, 2001
The NZ Herald had an interesting article today about how we need more young people studying maths and science. Why? Too many lawyers and accountants apparently. The latter group just play with money while engineers and scientists actually build stuff. It's not clear yet how the government plan on promoting science. It read to me like they wanted to do it by 1) making a new government department (oooh goodie) and 2) not letting people study other things. Hmmm, sounds like Orwellian 1984 totalitarianism to me. What do I think they should do? Hey, forget making more Government, just give students extra cash if they take science or maths. Easy and I bet you it would work.

Technical Triumph -- Friday, March 2, 2001
Still more additions to the BIG ENZ pages. I think I've sorted out how to put video on the web site as well. Real Network have a free movie producer so here we go.

Major BIG ENZ additions -- Thursday, February 22, 2001
I've been working on the BIG ENZ site a lot this week. I've put up a walk-through of our application video among other things. I've also started building the web site for James Cook High School. OK, so there's only a cute title on display so far but you can still make the counter tick over by visiting! :) I've also added a java script so your computer tells you what it thinks is the time (which may or may not be very helpful as the case may be).

Deep Blue not as Fast as Life -- Thursday, February 15, 2001
Ianman has sent in some more info about the DNA issue. Apparently IBM has been building a supercomputer that will simulate a protein molecule being created. The new computer called "Blue Gene" will be 500 times as fast as the fastest supercomputers (at the end of 1999) on the planet. It'll still take Blue Gene a year to simulate the protein folding. In humans the actual process only takes a second. Ianman continues:

You know, since there are (from memory) 31.56 megaseconds in a year, Blue Gene would have to be 31.56 million times as fast as it's going to be to actually work at the speed of life. (One year to model something that happens in one second.) That's 15.78 billion times as fast as the fastest supercomputer (as of the end of 1999). The proposed speed of Blue Gene is hardly the speed of life. Go life!

Unbelievable Super Complexity -- Tuesday, February 13, 2001
Today the scientists working on mapping the human genetic code decided to do another news release. Apparently the whole thing is, get this, incredibly more complex than anyone ever thought. Human DNA consists of about 3 billion base pairs (represented by just 4 different bases). Out of that huge code (about 500,000 pages worth, or 756MB) about 1% codes for proteins. But instead of bit of code making just one simple protein, many proteins are made. Instead of being simple they are incredibly more complex than proteins in any other living thing. Wait, there's more. Each protein can be found in multiple forms and each form can do multiple different jobs in the same cell (let alone other cells). Then comes the interaction between the different proteins, and finally, this matter of 99% of our DNA which they don't even have a clue about what it does! This folks, is complex. If you found a watch in a field you'd know someone made it. If you study the genetic code of life you can't run away from the fact of it's Creator.

Noetic Nostrils & Poll Results -- Wednesday, February 7, 2001
I'm sick today so I've written a poem about it.

Sinuses feel like lead
Like an inappropriately placed impact screwdriver
Mind feels like a piece of gum
Sat on and then stretched a metre as the person stands up
But then comes pseudoephedrine hydrochloride and paracetamol
And nothing rhymes after that

Poll results: The clear winner of our DeepScience poll for the favourite science fiction movie was The Matrix with 47%. The second place getter with 17% was Armageddon. I think that shows very good taste on your part as those are my favourites too. The Matrix for the storyline and Armageddon for the humour but also the message of self sacrifice for others. Check out the new DeepScience Survey!

New Classes -- Tuesday, February 6, 2001
Welcome to seven new classes at DeepScience. Last years class pages are still available but the ones shown on the navigation bar on the left are the ones with me for this year. As with last year, I am planing on keeping an up to date record of what we do in class each day.

Edit Finished -- Sunday, February 4, 2001
Craig Vrankovich and Keyframe Productions have done a fantastic job of editing our Scrapheap Challenge entry so it's all finished! We're going to send it off via courier and email. Regardless of whether the team is chosen to be on the British show or not, we've had a simply awesome time putting this together. Our own mini scrapheap challenge! The team name... the Big ENZ.

Filming Finished -- Saturday, February 3, 2001
Well, we went over to Barry's house today for a 8am start to our filming. I think we finished about 11am. Our Scrapheap Challenge team then visited Brett's work and Michael's work to record some 40 second bits of info about each of them. Later this evening I'll be off to edit it at another friend's house. How can I sum up the filming? Let's just say it was a blast...

Back to School -- Wednesday, January 31, 2001
Lots of news at the moment. Firstly, yes, everyone is back to school. The most impressive thing is the number of keys I now have to carry because they've taken my classroom away. Oh well. Second bit of news is that I'm the new webmaster for the James Cook High web site. Some of the info from here will end up on it but all in a revamped style. Third bit of news is that our Scrapheap Dream Team is assembled and ready to go. We are filming the application video on Saturday and it's looking VERY impressive. Remember, you heard it here first. The team: Brett, Barry, and Michael. Here's a quiz for you... what is the real team name? Is it:

  • a) Mike and the Mechanics
  • b) The Big Endz
  • c) The Petrol Heads

!!NEWS FLASH!! -- Scrapheap ALERT! -- Thursday, January 25, 2001
This in yesterday from Mel at PrimeTV:

We've had some very exciting news here at Prime. RDF International - the producers of Scrapheap Challenge are interested in a New Zealand team competing in the fourth series which is due to begin filming in April. Unfortunately the deadline is very tight - they need applications within the next two weeks... The first round is in April for one week. Then if you get through to the next round you will be required to appear in July/August.

Crumbs, the official deadline is just 4 days away!Well, needless to say DeepScience is putting an application together as we type. Several potential team members have been collared already. I've watched almost every Scrapheap episode and our team is looking at least as good as any on TV. These are not dodgy bodgers... they're the real thing!

In other news, I've just remembered that school starts again tommorrow for those teachers who teach at James Cook. Seniors are due back Tuesday. Juniors due back Wednesday. Have a fun long weekend and if you're bored then check out the Parachute Music Festival in Matamata - it's gonna rock!

Correction to Science Numbers -- Sunday, January 21, 2001
Ianman has been reading DeepScience again and sent in an email outlining a very important correction to our post of Thursday, December 28, 2000. Good spotting!

>1 million microphones: 1 megaphone

Actually, 1 million microphones = 1 phone.
1 million phones = 1 megaphone.
1000 microphones = 1 milliphone.
1000 milliphones = 1 phone.
1000 phones = 1 kilophone.
1000 kilophone = 1 megaphone.
1000 x 1000 x 1000 x 1000 = 1 (American) trillion.
Therefore 1 million million (American trillion) microphones = 1 megaphone

What is IT? -- Saturday, January 20, 2001
On Dateline the other night they featured a program which was from June 2000. It was mentioned Dean Kamen and his inventions, in particular, a wheel chair that can stand up on two wheels and climb stairs. Well, there's a new invention on the way labeled "IT". everybody wants to know what IT is. Well, there are rumors aplenty so I've collected some relevant bits and pieces on the best one - A super efficient powered scooter that keeps its own balance. Lots of pics. This is going to be very cool.

Make Peace not Computer War -- Tuesday, January 16, 2001
This in the Washington Times: Rationing TV, videotapes and video games can decrease children's aggressiveness, says a study released in today's issue of the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine. More than 1,000 studies have already shown that when children watch violent media they become more aggressive, but few studies have asked whether reducing media use would reduce aggressive behavior. This study is the first to show that aggressive behavior can be unlearned by reducing media exposure

Deep Thinking on the Net -- Thursday, January 11, 2001
Mark sends this article from Computer World. Seems that the Internet is actually the domain of those seeking religious enlightenment. Check out the facts and figures.

More Scrapheap Hopefully -- Wednesday, January 10, 2001
Chris, the programme manager with PrimeTV, has sent me a note. They are definately sorting things out so we can expect more great Scrapheap TV in the future.

Scrapheap Final Finished -- Sunday, January 7, 2001
Wow, my first post this millennium. Doesn't it make you feel old living in 2001? I suppose only if you were born in the seventies ;) OK, Scrapheap Challenge has wound down for the next little while. There is a one and a half hour long Christmas special which may be coming along some time. I'll phone Prime TV tommorrow and find out if they are going to air it. That's the issue where they have to squash a mini motorcar. Just back from Whangamata where we had one amazing game of volleyball. Hi Nicola and Rachel!

Spam Warning -- Saturday, December 30, 2000
The web site that I mentioned yesterday about the number quiz was attached onto a spam warez site. Do not type anyone's email address into any web site so that the site knows someones email address. What you think is a present becomes a flood of unwanted email. If you find an interesting site forward the details without giving out peoples addresses! There are only a few sites it is safe to do this on. The only one I know belongs to a news paper.

In other news, if you save this website in your favourites you get to see a cute little icon in the favourites list if you are using IE 5 or higher.

Numbers and Bouncy Spheres -- Friday, December 29, 2000
Go here ******* (site deleted) and see if u can figure it out, and if u do, could u let me know the answer (i turned my brain up side down and still couldn't figure it out) - ****

In other news, M asks, "Hi, is your natty mouse pointer available to other users? If so, then where can it be got for installation, thanks..." Here is the answer to that one. There's a real science involved in web design but you don't have to go it alone. Others have done the research for you and voila! freely available to add to your site. It's like coding pages by hand or using something like Macromedia's DreamWeaver to help you. There's a big difference in what you can accomplish :) I hope all DeepScience readers are trying to learn web page design - you've obviously got the computer so might as well use it! - Ed

Serious Science Numbers -- Thursday, December 28, 2000
Shal has sent in some interesting tidbits for the JPS section. If you were confused by all the techno jargon in science then this won't help ;)

Ratio of an igloo's circumference to its diameter: Eskimo Pi
2000 pounds of Chinese soup: Won ton
Time between slipping on a peel and smacking the pavement: 1 bananosecond
Weight an evangelist carries with God: 1 billigram
Half of a large intestine: 1 semicolon
1000 aches: 1 kilohurtz
Basic unit of laryngitis: 1 hoarsepower
1 million microphones: 1 megaphone
2000 mockingbirds: two kilomockingbirds (work on it....)
52 cards: 1 decacards
3 statute miles of intravenous surgical tubing at Yale University Hospital: 1 I.V. League

Real ALGORE quotes -- Friday, December 22, 2000
Yes, apparently these are real things that Al Gore (the current vice president of the USA) has said. Sounds like a good addition to the "Just Plain Silly" section of DeepScience!

CPL - World Gaming LAN -- Thursday, December 21, 2000
OK, so you can win $80,000 from just playing computer games. Hmmm, you've still got to fight your way through Dallas snow to get there. But people from about 44 different countries did, indeed, get there. About 560 on the first day alone. Huge corporate sponsership didn't stop some people from bringing their own machines along as you can see from this interesting modification to a BBQ.

NZ Norton Fix -- Monday, December 18, 2000
Well that's interesting. While zooming about trying to find fixes, I found that I have a Beta version of Norton's antivirus thingy. The folk in Australia are sending me a replacement disk as we speak, yay. But like I said, that's not the problem I have with the computer. It seems completely arbitrary as to whether or not files will work at any particular time or not. Hmmm.

The Scrapheap mower competition was marred by a poor Prime TV signal last night. In addition they really didn't explain how the blade gained alternating motion back and forth from a motor spindle that was just spinning. Well, the next show is going to be fireboats and looks hot.

Files Corrupted? -- Sunday, December 17, 2000
All is not well on this funny computer. My exe files are going funny. A virus? I don't think so, with an updated Norton running along happily. No, it looks like it is either the main hard drive packing a sad or problems related to cpu overclocking ;) Either way, it's very annoying and has slowed down the updates here.

If you've been enjoying the TV series Scrapheap then I totally recommend October Sky. It's in your local video store now and is a very cool movie about a bunch of kids from a no-hope little town school. Everyone from the school ends up being a coal miner. But these kids decide that building rockets is more interesting than digging coal... Good stuff.

Politics Schmolitics -- Tuesday, December 12, 2000
10:55 I was just chatting to a friend of mine over in the United States. It's really cool the way you can use MSNmessaging in Explorer to make free calls around the USA. Anyway, apparently Frank is going to be on the radio in just an hours time. He's going to be commenting on the presidential election that's going on there so you might want to check it out. Now, if you're into funny election stuff you might appreciate this piccy. Of course, if you want Al Gore to win then you might not appreciate it as much as everyone else does ... :)

Christmas -- Wednesday, December 6, 2000
Yikes, time just slips away when you're not having fun. Well, when it's report time anyway. If you really hate your report at least you can take comfort in the fact that it almost pushed dozens of teachers over the edge of mental sanity into the abyss of whatever it is if you fall down it. That's my lame excuse if not updating things around here. Rest assured we've got literally dozens of photos on their way to make an appearance in the next few days. Make sure you also keep watching Scrapheap Challenge on Sunday nights. And for those of you interested in all those election things happening in the United States at the moment, Mark V has found this useless bit of info for DeepScience readers:

Pythagorean theorem : 24 Words
The Lord's Prayer : 66 Words
Achimedes' Principle : 67 Words
The 10 Commandments : 179 Words
The U. S. Government regulations on the sale of cabbage : 26,911 Words

George Bush -- Thursday, November 9, 2000
I just found out that George W. Bush, the guy who looks like winning the Presidency of the USA, has a dog. It's name is Spot.

Photos and the President -- Wednesday, November 8, 2000
22:55 -- Due to popular demand we've added some Y12 Physics photos. The mystery question is... who was snapped eating an apple? In other news, the election in the United States for the President is very very very close. The state of Florida is the deciding issue with George Bush only 200 votes ahead of Algore in a vote of over five and a half million people. Now is that close or what? Al Gore is the current Vice President of the United States. George Bush is the son of former US president, George Bush. Obviously there will be a recount in Florida as well as tallying of mailed in votes. Al is seen as being anti-military, pro-big government, anti-morality, and pro-abortion. Bush is conservative and seen as being pro-life, pro-defence, pro-values, and anti-big government. Bush likes the phrase "compassionate conservativism" and Gore says he wants to appoint federal judges who will reinterpret the law however they like. Hmmm. What I can't understand is why the election is so close.

A Beach -- Sunday, November 5, 2000
22:29 -- Just a reminder for everybody coming up to exams... here's a picture I took when I was roaming around the Bay of Plenty a few weeks ago. The point? If you can study under a tree at the beach then do it otherwise you'll get sunburn (Hey, it's late). The GeoWeb has started here at DeepScience so take a look. It'll be updating a lot over the next few months.

DeepScience Pushes the Limits -- Thursday, November 2, 2000
I think I'll change the comet trails for a hanging swinging thingy instead. Hits sitting on 993, that's since June 2000 which means over 8 hits per day, every day, since DeepScience started! 692 unique visitors. Remember, if you find something science or philosophy related that would interest the rest of us then send it in (or a reference to it) and we'll mention it on DeepScience.

Looking Around -- Wednesday, November 1, 2000
Here's something interesting. There's this website called Globe Explorer that let's you look at things from a satellite hanging around in space. You've got to pay money if you want the whole world at your fingertips but if you want to look at central Auckland, for example, you can do that for free. DeepScience decided to look at one of the places deemed to be most evil in the city and this is what it looks like...

More from the Scrapyard -- Monday, October 30, 2000
Here's the official site for 2000. This year's competitors include three trainee vicars, a 71-year-old granny who's mad on engines, and the series' first team from the USA. Last year's Scrapheap favourite Bowser Munson is back with The Filth - a team of fellow motorbike police officers - and this series' winners will battle against last year's triumphant trio, The Megalomaniacs, in the grand final.

Mad challenges include building machines to do the following: Demolition, Aerial bomber, Mini-sub, Windmill, Missile launcher, Bridging machine, Steam car, Giant mower, Fireboat, and a Dragster for the grand final. Here's a review. And here's an American entrant to the Challenge called the Nerds. They have a nice list of team web sites you can look at as well.

Scrapheap is Back! -- Sunday, October 29, 2000
The most riveting show in existence returns to the TV screen only on Prime TV. Yup, the Scrapheap Challenge is back for a third backbreaking series showing on Sunday evenings at 8pm on Prime TV. This is science at its best - don't miss it. The presenter is Robert Llewellyn who you might recognise at Kryton the robot from Red Dwarf. Robert is a very cool guy. He sent me a letter and this is what he said:

Very good to hear that the show holds attention. The new series does have more engineers, but also a Christmas special with 'celebrities!' Aaargh. Should be good fun though... Hope you like the new stuff -- all the best Robert Llewellyn

Hockey Legend Helen -- Monday, October 24, 2000
One of the Auckland sports award finalists for sportswoman of the year was Helen Clarke of Olympic Hockey fame. I caught up with Helen at a teacher training course last week. Helen graciously allowed us an interview exclusive to DeepScience, in the RealAudio format. Helen is the goalkeeper of the New Zealand womens hockey team.

She joined the team in 1991 and went to the Barcelona Olympic Games, although she just ended up sitting on the sideline. She went to the World Cup in 1998 in South Africa where she played her 50th test Game. She also went to to the KL Games in 98 where the team won Bronze despite the overwhelming heat and humidity of that country. She's one of New Zealand's most notable sports heros, Helen Clarke.

The Great Debate -- Monday, October 16, 2000
23:19 -- The moot was something about should we stop doing trivial stuff and start really living. The actors from Shortland Street and Hercules were just fab as were the Epsom Girls and the MP. The Parliment guy was quite impressive in that he did actually figure out what the opposition were up to and countered their argument even if it was in his last closing sentence. If you missed the celebrity debate at Epsom Girls Grammar then this write up probably won't fill you in on the details but it was all great fun and they all spoke very well indeed.

In other news, if you are doing 7th form physics then you might be interested in buying this bunch of practice questions. It certainly looks good value to me. Look for the info on the Great Cache or the Mechanics Guide.

Camp Food -- Monday, October 9, 2000
22:35 -- I always enjoy camps because of the food and the Faith and Reason camp was no exception. We also had a great worship band along as well as yours truly nattering away about truth, world religions, the existence of God, and why Christianity is worth investigating from a scientific, philosophical, and spiritual perspective. Other notable happenings included non-stop break dancing, light bulb removal, and trampoline competitions to see how many could sit on the trampoline at once. Needless to say, these events did not happen all at the same time (imagine that!)

100th Space Shuttle Flight, Thursday, October 5, 2000
17:15 -- The world's only reusable space vehicle has both soared far above expectations and faltered with heartbreaking consequences since first roaring into the sky 100 flights and 19 years ago. The shuttle Columbia lifted off for its first mission on April 12, 1981. CNN has great write up of the shuttle's history including some little known facts. The space shuttle was the rocket ship depicted in the movie, Armageddon. Most of the web sites for the movie seem to have closed down but we still found one for you.

Building -- Tuesday, October 3, 2000
18:27 -- Here's some pics of the building going on - it's looking very BIG. It's also very noisy. My question is why do they only make noise between 7am and 9:30am? The rest of the day you don't hear a peep out of them but at 7am, whoa, then the electric saws come out and the hammers and everything. Hmmm, so much for sleeping in :)

Half Way -- Tuesday, October 3, 2000
11:00 -- Well, I've taken a week off and it looks like we're back into it. The Labour weekend camp is coming along and we're also helping out in the sound department for that. The National Champs in Whakatane were a blast, although at least one of the women there seemed to be rather topped up on male anabolic steroids ( I don't think girls should have muscles like that anyway.)

Last Day of Term III -- Thursday, September 21, 2000
22:53 -- We've had a busy week hence all the exciting updates here at DeepScience (not). But school doesn't finish for the teachers! We've got to learn all about the new assessment programme being introduced in New Zealand, plan some stuff, clean up some stuff, and go to the national bodybuilding championships in Whakatane. In the meantime, in celebration of the Olympics going on, here's a piccy of me at the Atlanta Olympic Games in 1996. I was a supervisor of security at the Georgia World Congress Center. All very exciting.

Importance of Physics -- Wednesday, September 13, 2000
22:32 -- This in from Steve:

One day our professor was discussing a particularly complicated concept. A pre-med student rudely interrupted to ask "Why do we have to learn this stuff?"

"To save lives," the professor responded quickly and continued the lecture. A few minutes later, the same student spoke up again. "So, how does physics save lives?" he persisted.

"It keeps the idiots out of medical school," replied the professor.

New Digital Cameras -- Tuesday, September 12, 2000
Ianman sends this report in about how the new digital cameras are going to be upwards of 16Megabytes of info in each picture (wow!)

And here's an interesting newsy thing about how Microsoft IE 5.x allows websites to know stuff about you. DeepScience doesn't do that though

Saturday, September 9, 2000
Campin' Time -- DeepScience is off to camp in October. It's the last weekend of the school holidays and it's a weekend that's gonna have music, mayhem, and a bunch of deeply thunked thoughts. For more info you can probably try speaking to Colin.

New Poll -- OK, what's your favourite science fiction movie? There's a new survey happening so let people know what you think. The poll is on the right hand side bar. The results of the previous poll showed Biology to be the favourite at 60% of the vote, with Physics and Philosophy tied for second with both getting 12% each.

Thursday, September 7, 2000
The Rock in Takanini is the highest indoor rock climbing place in New Zealand. DeepScience had a bunch of investigators there on Saturday checking things out (Sarah, Nathan, Matt, etc). I managed to fall off a 25 metre high wall and hurt my ankle a little bit. It's a good thing that I was only half a metre up the wall at the time I fell off it. Anyway, we're planing another trip in a week or so.

Tuesday, September 5, 2000
Some new building pics are up and we've got another 5 or 6 on the way. The carpenters have turned up. I don't think they are the well known musical group but they do have great musical talents which they practise from 6:45 in the morning onwards (ugh). This week DeepScience passed a birthday of sorts, we welcomed the 500th visitor since June this year. Yayyyyy! Also, Scott says that he's sending some funny info in, so we're looking forward to an update in the humour section soon.

Thursday, August 31, 2000
Wow, long time no update. A bunch of things are going on around DeepScience. One of the things that is coming is the massive mural competition. More about this later but it involves science, a car, a lot of paint, and a chance to be quite famous as well as letting your creative side go crazy.

The quote for this week is from the book I'm reading at the moment, "The Christian Philosophy of St. Thomas Aquinas." There's nothing like reading some great metaphysics for relaxing after a long day at work.

I've shifted some of the older news to, funnily enough, a page called "old news." After it disappears from this page, that's where it goes.

Expensive Power -- Wednesday, August 23, 2000
Just an update on the cost (NZ$) of those XGD driving lamps... $2000 each. Hmmmm, quality sure costs.

More Power -- Tuesday, August 22, 2000
For those car freaks out there wanting more power in the lighting department, Ianman found this info:

Xenon Gas Discharge (XGD) system for auxilary driving lights. Two of these babies supposedly outperform four 100W normal halogen spotlights, but use just 35W each (ie, 75W vs 400W) and are much closer in colour to daylight.

>The Predator XGD spread beam has a distance of 655 metres at 1 Lux
>with an unprecedented amount of foreground and side illumination.
>The pencil beam distance is 906 metres at 1 Lux in a tight spot with
>a smaller amount of spread at the end. ...
>Note: *Predator Lamps are only suitable for off-road Applications

Yeah, right. They offer a XGD work lamp also. Hella site here.

Hidden Updates -- Monday, August 21, 2000
Just a reminder that DeepScience gets updated every weekday. Yes, all the class pages get a one-line summary of what we've done on that day. Today I borrowed the school camera so we've got some pics up for a few of the classes as well. Also, what you've always wanted to know, what does a real staff meeting at JCHS look like?

Perpetual Motion -- Tuesday, August 15, 2000
The latest in wild physics theories. The scary thing is that there is some truth to one of them. The question is, which one?

"He was... a legend" -- Thursday, August 10, 2000
10:54pm - Phil Raffills, a man of faith, courage, tenacity. Starting in education as a science teacher, Phil impacted countless lives with his zest for life and the strength of his convictions. DeepScience salutes Phil Raffills.

Awesome Abs -- Wednesday, August 9, 2000
9:16pm - Tony Martin visited JCHS today. Here's a bit of a write up about it. Man, were those muscles!

Interface for this Place -- Tuesday, August 8, 2000
10:21pm - What is an interface? You can find out in this exclusive DeepScience article from Steve. We've put it under the Physics section. Tomorrow (Wednesday) is Bodybuilding day so we'll try and get some pics from that for you.

Jokes and Buildings -- Saturday, August 5, 2000
2:16pm - Carla sends some more ridiculous things that have been said (supposedly) in court rooms. There's also a new front page listing all such snippets. Also, we've got a whole bunch of new building photos that'll be showing up over the next few days.

Tony Martin -- Tuesday, August 3, 2000
9:19pm - National Champion Body Builder, Tony Martin, is coming to James Cook High School. He's going to be giving a special performance and talk about being on the cutting edge of this physical training sport. This will be for special classes only. Wednesday 9th August, period 3, in the hall. Koha 50 cents each. 9PS, 11PED, 12PEK, 12PEA, 11SPL. Organised by DeepScience.

Those other JCHS pictures are now up.

New news page -- Wednesday , August 2, 2000
10:55pm - For the odd bit of JCHS news and photos I've put up another page. The first piccy is of the physics classroom. Over the next couple of days we've got pics coming of the dog visit as well as everybody on the field during the fire evacuation. A very ordered group on the field - well done.

More Humour -- Monday, July 31, 2000
11:42pm - Jan sent me these ones. I want to focus on the Science section of DeepScience in the next few weeks but I just couldn't resist them.

Site of the Week -- Sunday, July 30, 2000
12:05am - Web Elements has the most up to date periodic table around. Just select an element and you can read some basic information about it or have a look at it's atomic structure. Very nice.

In other news, The class pages are being updated almost everyday. So stuff is happening even though we only had one news posting this week :) We've also got three articles in the wings which I need to think about posting.

Future of Lighting -- Wedneday, July 26, 2000
9:34pm - An article on LEDs and LEPs. "UNIAX claims to have developed LEPs with demonstrated efficacy exceeding 3 lumens per watt and brightnesses of approximately 500 candelas per square meter at 3 volts. The company believes that achieving 25 percent efficacy would enable manufacturers to develop polymer LEP products like wallpaper lighting that would entirely change the lighting industry..." Imagine your whole ceiling glowing! - Ianman

Wendys Wombles -- Sunday, July 23, 2000
Hi to everyone that I met tonight at Wendys. Like I said, you're most welcome to write an article based on whatever topic you're doing in science at the moment and we'll pull funny faces then put it on DeepScience. (Were you all from EGGS? Well not the boys I guess.) There's another funny page up. I've also recieved two new articles on computer science from Steve. Just a little editing and they'll be ready.

Science Internet Radio -- Saturday, July 22, 2000
Want to hear the latest discussions in science? Well, in the United States, National Public Radio has a programme called "Science Friday." You can listen to the weekly show on the internet using the Real Audio player format. This week they are talking about Phage therapy - killing bacteria by using bacteria, not by using antibiotics. They are also talking with scientists from the Access Research Network on the subject of how evolution or its opposition, intelligent design, is taught in public schools.

Also, in other news, here's some info on how to make the LED flashlight.

Man on the Moon -- Thursday, July 20, 2000
Today in history Neil Armstrong climbed the last step down from the Apollo 11 lander and stepped onto the surface of the moon. His famous words stirring in our memory, "That's one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind."

Expensive Urine? -- Monday, July 17, 2000
Mark sends a copy of this article to us all about how diet supplements are all the rage at the moment (well I buy them).

Back to School -- July 16, 2000
Yup, that time of being completely lost for cerebral activity is over. Here at DeepScience we've had to get another filing cabinet to deal with all the extra paper. Hmmm, that makes 10 file drawers in total, what a lot of fulfilling filing. Ianman has sent in some building pics of the night moving experience. He also reminds folk of the lunar eclipse happening tonight (darn, and it did have to be cloudy...):

The following info is from Auckland Observatory where there are also some pictures and diagrams. This will be the longest lunar eclipse between AD1859 and AD3000 - 1 hour 47 minutes of totality. ... Make the most of this eclipse. There is not another lunar eclipse visible from New Zealand until 28th August 2007.

Science Illiteracy -- Thursday, July 13, 2000
Woah, there are some surveys of how well people in the United States understand basic science principles. Here's an article from the Washington Times which talks about some of the crazy things that people believe when they don't know the truth.

Building Noise -- Wednesday, July 12, 2000
OK, so here's what I did, I stuck a microphone out the window and recorded the sound of the digger digging a real big hole right next to my house. Listen to it as a mp3 file and wish you were not here :)

Building at DeepScience -- Tuesday, July 11, 2000
There's a whole lotta building going on about 2 feet (60 centimeters) from my window. If you want to keep up with what it's like being next to such a building commotion check out the new pages under the DeepScience.com heading on the left. I've also added a building update area on the right. The latest pictures will be there in mini format. Many thanks to Edward from PB Technologies for the idea behind the idea (he said I needed more pictures).

Duracell Site is Cool -- Monday, July 10, 2000
In the general roam for cool internet sites, Ianman points out this doozy. Yup, it's all about batteries and it's goooood. Everything from battery science, games, and Invention Challenge to other cool science links. Duracell is our Site of the Week. Check it out!

Computer Science Coming -- Friday, July 7, 2000
I'm very excited about some articles that we'll be publishing shortly on computer science subjects. Steve has sent in some rough copies for us to have a look at and when the finished ones come in you can be sure to find them here on DeepScience. They're quite funny too. Here's a snipit.

But wait! Theres more! We can dig even deeper still. If you take out your CPU and open it up the whole process continues. (Don't do this at home folks, we are experienced professionals.... not!) A CPU has a whole bunch of components that talk together using well defined, simple interfaces. But these are actually etched into the silicon and too small for us to see.

Logic for Lunch -- Tuesday, July 4, 2000
Nowadays people are getting more and more esoteric and waffly about reality. That makes it really difficult to teach science. Everything is "just your opinion," and this apparently is a real fact. Last year, while teaching at Epsom Girls Grammar School, I wrote an article about logic. I wanted to summarise the most important points without getting bogged down in detail. I wanted to provide a good thinking foundation for scientific investigations and this short article is the result.

Scrapheap Final -- Monday, July 3, 2000
Just a reminder, the final in the latest series of Scrapheap is on this evening at 8:30pm on Prime TV - don't miss it! On other matters, I have put individual pages up for each of my classes. Particularly excellent work may end up there or basic reminders of projects and current topics and things.

BOREDOM! -- Friday, June 30, 2000
Yes, it's sad but true. The end of term 2 has arrived and all the school students will have to spend the next very sad two weeks completely bored out of their minds until the excitement of studying the world can continue in our science classes... DeepScience doesn't have a holiday so feel lots of pity if you can :)

Mapping Human Genes -- Wednesday, June 28, 2000
You've probably seen it in the news lately, there's a revolution in science going on with the human genome project hitting the 80% complete mark. What's that all about? Well, just like there is a blueprint or plan used to build a car, there is a blueprint for you. It's your DNA, a fantastically complex code with 3 billion letters in it. This code is written on every cell in your body which is pretty cool considering it's the same as 1000 books of 500 pages each worth of text. As they say, God writes small.

Anyway, people like Doubletwist have been hard at work trying to write it all out (all 1000 books worth). They need very powerful computers to do that and have been helped in that regard by the same people who invented the Java programming language that helps run even this site!

Apparently there are about 30,000 chapters (total) in all those books and it looks like they've worked out pretty much where all the chapters start and stop. What they actually mean is another question. Anyway, it's all very exciting and very DeepScience.




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