A little light ridicule to start the day, as the satirists read the tabloids and surf the social media storms for an irreverent look at what’s tickling the nation’s fancy today. The home team are joined by guest star Rachel Parris of The Mash Report.
The smart-machines revolution is re-shaping our lives and our societies. Shadbolt dispels terror, confusion and misconception. We are not about to be elbowed aside by a rebel army of super-intelligent robots of our own creation. We were using tools before we became homo sapiens, and will continue to control them. How we exercise that control – in our private lives, in employment, in politics – and make the best of the wonderful opportunities, will determine our collective future well-being. Shadbolt is one of the UK’s foremost computer scientists. He is a leading researcher in artificial intelligence, a Professor of Computer Science at the University of Oxford, and chairman of the Open Data Institute, which he co-founded with Tim Berners-Lee.
Join the bestselling fantasy author and her entourage of Knights and Dark Searchers. Enter the world of Valkyrie and Pegasus, find out about the magical creatures in Kate’s world, and hear how writing fantasy can remove all limits to the imagination. Knights, monsters and even rubber ducks may appear!
Duration 45 minutes
Join the Maisy Mouse creator Lucy Cousins and storyteller Liz Fost for an event of feathered fun as they bring A Busy Day for Birds to life in a storytelling and live illustration event.
Join a thrilling journey through time and imagination as Reeve talks about the inspiration for Black Light Express, a sequel to Railhead which continues the adventures of interplanetary thief Zen and the android Nova, in a future where intelligent trains can carry you between far-flung planets in the blink of an eye.
The Wye’s natural beauty has long been part of the river’s heritage, but many aspects of its history have been forgotten. Having both a Welsh and an English heritage, the Wye has a special unifying role in British culture, as well as exhibiting some of the classic features of a border. The river has been a psychological barrier separating cultures by language, religion and politics, and a physical barrier separating hostile rivals. By tradition the Wye was the last refuge of Vortigern and of Owain Glyndwr. In the 18th century, timber that was floated down the river from the Golden Valley built the British fleet that took on the French at Trafalgar.
We have been repeatedly told that the UK will be looking to create new free-trade partnerships following Brexit, above all with the 'Anglosphere'. Why then do we need to study or learn other languages? Everyone speaks English. This session will unpack some of the monolingual attitudes that sit behind such views and ask participants to think about the role of languages and language learning for Britain's relationships with a brave new world post-Brexit. #unpack
What happens when you bring together two people at the top of their game but from different spheres? Shuckburgh is a climate scientist and deputy head of the Polar Oceans Team at the British Antarctic Survey. Haughton is a designer, author and illustrator of numerous publications including A Bit Lost, Oh No George! and Shh! We Have a Plan. They have collaborated to create an original piece of work that will explore the issues around polar science and climate change. The Trans.MISSION project was created to bring science and culture together with the aim of communicating cutting-edge science to new audiences through new methods. More information about the Trans.MISSION project can be found here.
Recent advances in space exploration imaging have allowed us now to see landscapes never before possible. Murdin shows some of the greatest views and vistas of Mars, Venus’s Titan, Io and more in their full glory. Towering cliffs, icy canyons: the scenery is out of this world; all captured with the latest technology by landing and roving vehicles or by very low-flying spacecraft. Murdin is Senior Fellow Emeritus at the Institute of Astronomy at Cambridge.
With a death toll of 50-100 million people and a global reach, the Spanish 'flu of 1918-1920 was the greatest human disaster, not only of the 20th century, but possibly in all of recorded history. And yet, in our popular conception it exists largely as a footnote to World War One. Spinney recounts the story of an overlooked pandemic, tracing it from Alaska to Brazil, from Persia to Spain, and from South Africa to Odessa. Telling the story from the point of view of those who lived through it, she shows how the pandemic was shaped by the interaction of a virus and the humans it encountered; and how this devastating natural experiment put both the ingenuity and the vulnerability of humans to the test. Chaired by Stephanie Boland of Prospect magazine.
Shiver me timbers! Once upon a time, a mysterious message in a bottle said someone needed help; help from a certain bold, brave knight. So the brilliant Sir Charlie Stinky Socks, his cat Envelope and his good grey mare find a ship to rescue the messenger. Join the author for a musical, storytelling journey complete with pirates, a sea monster, and a delicious surprise.
"Stop acting so small. You are the universe in ecstatic motion" – Rumi. Jalaluddin Rumi is one of the foremost poets of the Sufi tradition, with a lasting influence that transcends nationality, religion and literary genre. His poetry distils the purest experience of love, life and God into some of the most haunting, beautiful and profound verse ever written. The acclaimed Turkish novelist celebrates Rumi’s philosophy of love and life and reflects on her own experience of Sufism, and its impact on her work. Chaired by William Sieghart.
Wagner presents her riveting biography of one of the most important figures in American civil engineering history, Washington Roebling, builder of the Brooklyn Bridge. Introduced by Philip Davies, Director of the Eccles Centre.
Knap Hall – a house isolated by its rural situation and its dark reputation. Seven people, nationally known, but strangers to one another, locked inside. But this time, Big Brother may not be in control. Phil Rickman reveals his latest novel to Adrian Rainbow.