Reporter 433, 15 March 1999

In the news

University researchers believe that extra bright lights in the workplace can help people adapt more smoothly to working through the night, reported the Financial Times.

In its 'technology worth watching' column the FT reported on the software tool, Shiftcheck, being developed by Dr. Laurence Smith in the psychology department Merseyside police have used the software to help select "the healthiest" shift patterns for police officers.

It was reported in the Yorkshire Evening Post that lonely students can now look for love on the internet thanks to a new lonely-hearts page on the official Leeds University Student Union's Website. LUSU Communications officer Anna Richards said "they're all absolutely genuine, I suppose it just shows what a wide range of people study at the University". Leeds students are also at the forefront of a campaign against the NUS, reported the Guardian and Independent.

'The car for the millennium' being developed by Drs Warren Manning and Andrew Plummer, (featured in Reporter 430) was prominently displayed in a half page article in the Yorkshire Evening Post.

The machine, which will take over controls from the driver, automatically detects and adjusts to changing road conditions and will tell you when to visit the garage, could be on the road within a decade, the researchers said. The team has just started on a £5,000,000 project to develop the technology for Rover.

Trial explosions 'big enough to bring down buildings' with the aim of making factories safer, as featured in Reporter 432, were picked up by the Yorkshire Post, Yorkshire Evening Post and the Daily Star.

The tabloid's headline on the explosions of household materials including, aspirin, coal, salt, tea and sugar read: 'Fancy a cup of Tea-N-T'. Recalling his schoolboy fascination with pyrotechnics, the YEP's John Wellington said "I envy the big bang boffins". University Vice-Chancellor, Professor Alan Wilson was among those expressing concerns about the introduction of university performance indicators based on the postcodes of undergraduates. Although the University of Leeds fully supported the objective of widening access, he told the Yorkshire Post, performance indicators based on postcodes would be far too crude a measure. "Different universities have different aims and functions and therefore different catchments. It would be crazy to judge an institution running a lot of science and maths courses, for example, for failing to pull from areas where the schools are not teaching the relevant courses."

In the studio, live on BBC Radio 5's Media Show, was Dr Richard Howells from Communications Studies. He was called in to discuss Monica Lewinsky and 'victim television' and BBC TV programme sales abroad.

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