I got accepted into a University!
🎊 Exciting news: I've been accepted to one of the two universities I applied to!
I really doubted that I could even get into THE university of my city since they are harder to get into with higher grades for the entry requirements, but I think I only got in because of my apprenticeship experience. For example, if I had went straight to applying at the university at age 18, I wouldn’t have gotten in. I even thought when I was younger “oh I couldn’t ever apply because that’s for the smart smart people” BUT I GOT IN and I’m not even maths smart!
So, thank you God that I studied coding when I was studying Biology, Chemistry, Maths during my last two years of school. Although I had to drop out due to health reasons, thank you God for the opportunity to learn how to build websites and explore Python while working as a call centre agent. Thank you God for the confidence to apply for an apprenticeship, even though I didn't complete my schooling! Thank you God for helping me complete the apprenticeship with a pass mark and then continue working there as their Junior Web Developer. And thank you God for helping me randomly apply to these universities and I got a place!
My journey has been filled with challenges and opportunities, and for that, I am grateful!
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Chemists solve long-standing polymer science puzzle
New research by the University of Liverpool's Chemistry Department represents an important breakthrough in the field of polymer science.
In their study, Liverpool researchers use mechanochemistry to characterize how a polymer chain in solution responds to a sudden acceleration of the solvent flow around it.
The paper, "Experimental quantitation of molecular conditions responsible for flow-induced polymer mechanochemistry," is published in Nature Chemistry and is featured on the front cover.
This new approach answers a fundamental and technological question that has preoccupied polymer scientists for the past 50 years.
New Paper Published - LaNt a31 in breast cancer
Big new paper out now! "Laminin N-terminus α31 is upregulated in invasive ductal breast cancer and changes the mode of tumour invasion."
#breastcancer #laminin #ECM #tumour #metastasis
Big new paper out now! “Laminin N-terminus α31 is upregulated in invasive ductal breast cancer and changes the mode of tumour invasion.” available to access for free via the link.
This work, by Dr Lee Troughton as first author, has been a long time in the making. Pretty much as everything has been during COVID! It really is a testament to Lee’s perseverance in getting it out.
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The chapter of Royston Ellis meeting the Beatles is so wild.
He first hits on George at the Jacaranda. George responds to this with a casual “oh, you’d love my friends” and brings him to Gambier Terrace:
Also dropping into the Gambier Terrace pit was a special guest, Royston Ellis, “King of the Beatniks.” The bearded bard, who featured in TV documentaries and press articles whenever an offbeat teenage angle was needed, was in Liverpool to read his poetry at the university on June 24/25, and he swiftly found himself drawn into the Beatles’ company. The conduit was George, who (with nothing else to do while John, Stu and Paul were in school) was hanging around the Jac when the wandering coffee-bar poet traipsed in, drawn by hip radar to “the happening place.” Avowedly “trying everything,” Ellis was an active bisexual in this period of his life and he took an immediate fancy to George: “He looked fabulous with his long hair and matelot-style striped T-shirt, very modern, which is why I deliberately spoke to him. I was nineteen and he was seventeen and we clicked right away.”15
George took Ellis, his typewriter and his duffel bag back to Gambier Terrace to meet John and Stu. A rapport was quickly established and Ellis was invited to “crash” for a few days—yet another occupant for the filthy back room.
Then Ellis hits it off with John and Stu and wants them as a backing band:
Ellis says he developed a particular rapport with John and Stuart and that they discussed poetry, art and London. When he left, they spoke of doing it again sometime: “We were talking about how I wanted a band to come to London and back me on my Rocketry performances, and they were thrilled at the idea.” Art school studies finished the following Friday, July 1, marking the end of Stu’s fourth year and John’s third and last because the college was waving him goodbye. The exam results, when they came through on August 1, were just as expected: John failed and was out, Stuart passed the NDD, for which he received a certificate. The option was there for him to do a fifth year and attain the highest available qualification, the Art Teacher’s Diploma (ATD), akin to a degree and entitling him to become a teacher … but both he and John were pondering a period as prospectors, and doing something again with Ellis was a definite possibility.
So much so, Ellis is responsible for the first* two mentions of the band in the newspaper:
As for Ellis, so much was he enthused by the possibility of appearing with them again that he soon got the Beatles their first mention in a music paper. It was the July 9 edition of Record and Show Mirror, where a supercilious little article about “the bearded sage of the coffee bars” ended “he’s thinking of bringing down to London a Liverpool group which he considers is most in accord with his poetry. Name of the group? ‘The Beetles’”
….A born publicist, Royston Ellis knew how to manipulate a follow-up, writing a letter for publication that clarified a point in the first. He expressed his intention to find a group that would join him on TV appearances with Bert Weedon and the Shadows, and reiterated, “For some time I have been searching for a group to use regularly, and I feel that the ‘Beetles’ (most of them are Liverpool ex-art students) fill the bill.”
John and Stu decide to go to London on their own to join Ellis…but then chicken out:
By July 10, at the end of his three-year art school vacation, John had arrived at a key decision in his life: he would try to earn his living from the guitar. “I became a professional musician the day I got a red letter from the art college saying ‘Don’t bother coming back next September,’ ” he later said.31 Cyn would remember, “John decided that this [music] was very definitely the life for him. All the ideas that everyone else had for him of making an impact on the art world faded into the back of beyond with incredible rapidity, and with almost no regret at all. Aunt Mimi was distraught. Her view of his future couldn’t have been blacker at that time.”32
These events coinciding, it seems John and Stu decided to head south and hang out with Royston Ellis. Allan Williams is emphatic on the matter: he says John and Stu “split the Beatles and went down to London.”33 Norman Chapman would remember Stu asking him for a lift through the Mersey Tunnel one day so he (or he and John) could hitchhike to London—“They wanted to go down to London and become involved in this poetry-music scene.” Beat poets led a nomadic life by definition. Ellis lived for periods in all sorts of places, but his main base was still his parents’ house, at 31 Clonard Way, Hatch End, Pinner, Middlesex, a pleasant detached villa with the name Denecroft. This was the address he gave John while staying at Gambier Terrace. When Ellis arrived home one day his mother said he’d missed a visit from his “beatnik friends from Liverpool.” He never knew how many or who had come, but—as insane as it appears—John and Stu (and/or as Ellis always thought—hoped—George) had hitched the best part of two hundred miles, taken the trouble of locating his house in leafy Metroland, not stayed or left a message and then gone home again, never returning or making further contact. It makes no sense, but there it sits, illogical and incomplete.
Allan Williams remembers them being “back in Liverpool within a week, because it didn’t work out,” at which point the Beatles “reformed” as if they’d never been away. With bookings only every Saturday, it’s conceivable they did all this without missing one, and perhaps that was always the intention. However, while three independent witnesses (Ellis, Williams and Chapman) all remember something happening, none of the Beatles ever mentioned it—though in their interviews they talked with candor about everything. So it must remain in doubt, an intriguing puzzle unlikely to be solved.
There are two additional curiosities that may or may not be incidental. One is that, in the last days of July, a group of Liverpool art school students, apparently including John and Stu, went to London (or tried to go) to see a Picasso exhibition at the Tate Gallery. Second, and most fascinatingly, a set of photographs taken at this very time (mid-July 1960) in Stu and John’s studio-bedroom-slum at 3 Gambier Terrace includes several people they knew but not John and Stu themselves—perhaps because they were on the Hatch End trip. It was published on July 24 in the national Sunday rag the People in a sensation-splash headlined THIS IS THE BEATNIK HORROR. It’s as if a man on a flaming pie was pointing down at Flat 3, Hillary Mansions, Gambier Terrace, Liverpool 1. In six months, three Beatles moved in and the fourth was hanging out, the nation’s best-known beat poet had come here to get them high, and now, when a Fleet Street journalist and photographer were looking to substantiate a load of old tosh about dirty beatniks—reportage that could have been cooked up anywhere in the country—they landed in Stu and John’s room.34
Though hugely amusing, the feature had one unfortunate side-effect: because the address was given (a “three-roomed flat in decaying Gambier Terrace in Liverpool”) and some of the occupants (“well-educated youngsters”) were named, the landlord gave the tenant, Rod Murray, notice to quit. On August 15, everyone—Rod, Diz, Ducky, Stuart, John and sundry other bodies who’d joined them—would be out on the street.
—Mark Lewisohn’s Tune In, Ch 15 (May 31–Aug 15, 1960)
And Lewisohn is just like yup nothing to see.
So what the hell happened here? Was it just a school trip? Or was it a deliberate split?
Gallium oxide crystal complexity tamed by machine learning
Researchers at the University of Liverpool, the University of Bristol, University College London (UCL), and Diamond Light Source have developed new understanding of gallium oxide by combining a machine-learning theoretical approach with experimental results.
In a paper published in the journal Advanced Materials, researchers used a combination of theoretical approaches and machine learning techniques to identify the key characteristics of gallium oxide, a material that has promising applications in power electronics and solar-blind photodetectors.
Gallium oxide presents a particular challenge across synthesis, characterization, and theory due to its inherent disorder and resulting complex structure—electronic structure relationship.
It has five different phases or crystal structures, known as alpha, beta, gamma, delta and epsilon. The gamma phase was first suspected to exist in 1939, but it remained largely elusive until 2013 when more details of its structure were found using neutron diffraction. It has four inequivalent gallium lattice sites that are partially occupied in an inherently disordered structure, so that in spite of its deceptively simple cubic symmetry, it is in fact immensely complex. The enormous number of possible crystal structures makes conventional theoretical approaches impossible.