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The first demonstration of laser action in ruby was made in 1960 by T. H. Maiman of Hughes Research Laboratories, USA. Many laboratories worldwide began the search for lasers using different materials, operating at different wavelengths. In the UK, academia, industry and the central laboratories took up the challenge from the earliest days to develop these systems for a broad range of applications. This historical review looks at the contribution the UK has made to the advancement of the technology, the development of systems and components and their exploitation over the last 60 years.
Innovative methods to collect dietary data at multiple times across the year are needed to better understand seasonal or temporal changes in household diets and measure the impact of nutrition-sensitive agricultural programmes in low-income countries. The present study aims to validate a picture-based research tool for participants to self-record their household’s dietary diversity each month in villages of Manyoni District, Tanzania. Pictorial record charts were developed to reflect local food resources. In 113 randomly selected households, the person responsible for food preparation was trained to mark all items consumed by any household member within the home, or prepared for consumption outside the home, for a single recording day. The next day, an interview-based household 24-h food recall (H24HR) was collected for the same period. Separate analyses tested agreement (a) between picture charts and H24HR and (b) between H24HR following chart completion and on an alternative day. Concordance between methods differed between food groups and items but was high to very high for all cereals, vegetables, pulses, legumes and nuts and almost all fruits. Recording of ten items (including non-cultivated fruits and ingredients of mixed dishes) differed significantly between H24HR assessments, all of which were reported by more households in interviews following chart completion. Results suggest potential for visual prompts and the contemporaneous nature of data collection to improve the accuracy of interview-based recall. With adequate investment in developing and implementing context-adapted tools, pictorial charts may also offer an effective standalone method for use at multiple time-points in agricultural programmes.
Although life-story work is an established form of support for people with dementia and their carers, culturally Deaf people who are sign language users have been excluded from this practice. There is no evidence base for the cultural coherence of this approach with Deaf people who sign, nor any prior investigation of the linguistic and cultural adaptation that might be required for life-story work to be effective for sign language users with dementia. Given the lack of empirical work, this conceptual thematic literature review approaches the topic by first investigating the significance of storytelling practices amongst Deaf communities across the lifespan before using the findings to draw out key implications for the development of life-story work with culturally Deaf people who experience dementia and their formal and informal carers (whether Deaf or hearing). The reviewed work is presented in three themes: (a) the cultural positioning of self and others, (b) learning to be Deaf and (c) resistance narratives and narratives of resistance. The article concludes that life-story work has the potential to build on lifelong storying practices by Deaf people, the functions of which have included the (re)forming of cultural identity, the combating of ontological insecurity, knowledge transmission, the resistance of false identity attribution, and the celebration of language and culture.
Animal-source foods (ASF) have the potential to enhance the nutritional adequacy of cereal-based diets in low- and middle-income countries, through the provision of high-quality protein and bioavailable micronutrients. The development of guidelines for including ASF in local diets requires an understanding of the nutrient content of available resources. This article reviews food composition tables (FCT) used in sub-Saharan Africa, examining the spectrum of ASF reported and exploring data sources for each reference. Compositional data are shown to be derived from a small number of existing data sets from analyses conducted largely in high-income nations, often many decades previously. There are limitations in using such values, which represent the products of intensively raised animals of commercial breeds, as a reference in resource-poor settings where indigenous breed livestock are commonly reared in low-input production systems, on mineral-deficient soils and not receiving nutritionally balanced feed. The FCT examined also revealed a lack of data on the full spectrum of ASF, including offal and wild foods, which correspond to local food preferences and represent valuable dietary resources in food-deficient settings. Using poultry products as an example, comparisons are made between compositional data from three high-income nations, and potential implications of differences in the published values for micronutrients of public health significance, including Fe, folate and vitamin A, are discussed. It is important that those working on nutritional interventions and on developing dietary recommendations for resource-poor settings understand the limitations of current food composition data and that opportunities to improve existing resources are more actively explored and supported.
In this article we discuss how contemporary computational and electronic music-making practices might be characterised as a post-digital avant-garde. We also discuss how practitioners within the higher education sector can play a role in leading the development of these practices through their research and teaching. A brief overview of twentieth-century avant-garde practices is provided to set the scene before a case for defining a post-digital avant-garde is made. By way of illustration, the authors describe their own post-digital creative practices and then discuss how these integrate into their academic duties. We reflect on themes that run through avant-garde practices and continue into the post-digital. Finally, we describe how these themes inform an undergraduate music technology programme such that it might be shaped to reflect these developments and prepare students for a post-digital future.