I used to go to Edinburgh University. For the first two years I was nominally doing Astrophysics, until it proved too difficult, and I backed off to do plain Physics (which, in turn, I only just managed to pass; but that’s another story).
In our house we’re regular watchers of University Challenge. So imagine my excitement last night when Edinburgh were on with a team of scientists, including two astrophysicists.
And imagine my embarassment when they were roundly trounced by a team from Southampton.
It did seem slightly ominous when Paxo specifically said that they were weak on arts. It’s common for arts-heavy teams to be weak on science; but I’ve never seen a team of scientists that were so bad on arts.
Actually I don’t think I’ve ever seen a UC team that was all scientists before, but I’ve never met four scientists who knew so little bout the arts.
Maybe standards really are slipping? Or maybe today’s science students just aren’t reading enough Science Fiction. Who knows. Though by the look of that last link, even SFSoc don’t read much now.
Incidentally, when I was there, we didn’t have any of those websites. Because we didn’t even have the web. Seems hard to imagine now…