Posts Tagged ‘Scotland’

UK robot football post-match analysis



Edinferno, the Scottish team in the 2011 robot footbal World Cup, might not have won any matches but they can still claim that the tournament was a success. Ian Douglas met their manager

Subramanian Ramamoorthy is back in his office at Edinburgh University’s Institute of Action, Perception and Behaviour after competing in RoboCup 2011, the robot football world cup in Istanbul. Despite not actually winning any matches he’s cheerful and keen to talk about the benefits of the tournament beyond adding to Scotland’s long list of heroic sporting defeats.

‘We competed in two leagues: the standard platform [small robots, all of which are built from identical hardware but programmed by the individual teams] which is the flagship league, and the simulation league [an entirely virtual competition consisting of artificial intelligences battling directly within a computer]. There’s an initial pool divided into groups of four, an elimination round, then quarter finals, semi finals and so on. We lost all of our matches in the standard league, I think the scores were 1-nil, 3-nil and 1-nil.’ (more…)

Talking Horses

imageThe latest news and best bets from today’s races around the country
The glory days of Lewes racecourse can be rekindled by Aimigayle in Sandown’s Bet365 Gold Cup, the jumps season’s valuable finale. After the Sussex track, which featured in the book and film Brighton Rock, closed in 1964, racing traditions in the area gradually faded. At its peak there were some 60 different stables based in and around Lewes.

However, the locally based Sheena West and Jim Best, who like Aimigayle’s trainer, Suzy Smith, gallops his horses on the old racecourse every day, are among those doing their best to revive Lewes as a racing centre and keep the town on the Turf map.

Aimigayle is the best-backed horse in the ante-post market and her price has steadily dropped in recent days but this talented and ultra-tough mare should still give backers a good run for their money.

AV result could be determined by young Londoners – if they turn out to vote

imageCapital’s younger demographic may be crucial to hopes that yes campaign can overturn poll results in referendum On Thursday 5 May, Martin Radford will pop out of his London flat overlooking the Royal Victoria Dock in the capital’s east end and stroll next door to the polling booth to have his say in the UK’s first national referendum in 35 years.

Radford, a retired restaurateur who serves as a magistrate, has received leaflets from both the yes and no campaigns and concludes that switching to the alternative vote is a good idea. “It will be a fairer way of voting,” he says.

The fear is that Radford will be in the minority of Londoners when it comes to casting a vote for or against replacing the first past the post system, with turnout predicted to be as low as 15% among an eligible electorate of more than five million.

Less than 50 metres from Radford’s door, the referendum result will be announced on 6 May in the Platinum Suite of the expansive ExCeL convention centre. (more…)

Cardinal Keith O’Brien warns of threat from ‘aggressive secularism’

imageThe leader of the Catholic church in Scotland has used his Easter address to attack “aggressive secularism”, suggesting there were “those who would indeed try to destroy our Christian heritage and culture and take God from the public square”.

He made the address as David Cameron publicly endorsed the “enormous contribution” of Christian values to Britain, days before he welcomes senior churchmen to Downing Street for an Easter celebration. (more…)