For a round-up of today’s news, listen to the Edinburgh Napier News bulletin:
By Ray Philp and Jen McClure
Valentine’s Day has a sorry history of prescribed gestures of love. Cards, flowers, chocolates, champagne, kissograms; none rise above the flotsam of generic sentiment. Redblue Introductions offers a life-raft for singles searching for a more personal touch to their quest for love, by offering cooking classes for singles.
Redblue Introductions, in partnership with New Town Cookery School, host a cooking school for up to 16 people. Upon arrival, singletons are encouraged to socialise before entering the kitchen to begin cooking. While men are tasked with preparing the ingredients, females mingle between prospective partners/chefs/househusbands and take turns to assist. Once the meal is served, singles dine together to enjoy their meal with a glass of wine.
Annabel Latto, director of Redblue Introductions, says that the cooking classes offer something unique to singles with busy lifestyles, and those who opt out of online dating.
“A lot of people are disillusioned [by online dating] and want to go back to a traditional way of meeting people, which is why introduction agencies are doing really well at the moment.”
Latto emphasises the benefits of a personalised service, saying that face-to-face dating services such as cooking classes are an effective way of ‘vetting’ dishonesty more commonly ascribed to dating websites.
“Our clients are professionals, they don’t really have the time to meet people or they’ve tried online dating – [they] meet someone and they look completely different.”
One thing is for certain: whether you’re a dab hand with a chopping board or you don’t know your parsnips from your elbow, things are sure to get steamy in the kitchen.
For more information, visit http://www.redblueintroductions.co.uk
By Joel Sked
Studying at university has taken a step further into the digital age thanks to the latest smartphone innovation introduced by the University of Edinburgh.
With requests from students to allow them to view timetables and course information from their phone the university came up with the application which should work on Apple’s iPhones, Blackberry, Nokia’s and HTC phones.
The £80,000 Mobile Campus App project is set to be introduced in January and last for a minimum of three years.
It is an idea that was originally introduced by the University of Dundee, labelled the Dundee Connect app. It allows students to search for e-mail addresses of university staff, view library card records and locate campus maps amongst other add-ons. The application from the Edinburgh University goes one further and gives students information about their course with updates about assignments or timetable changes.
Despite reservations about students deciding against going to classes and staying in bed to ‘study’ on their phone Edinburgh students believe it will be a useful application as long as information is up-to-date.
Student Matthew Dickie, 21, said: “It seems a good idea in principle but it’s entirely dependent on it being interactively updated frequently as out of date information can be problematic.”
MA in Business Studies student Murray Hughes feels it will make the university much more accessible. He said: “It has the makings of a good idea. Students don’t check their e-mail everyday and are more likely to use an interactive app. It helps students like me who travel from outwith Edinburgh make sure we are not coming into university only to learn the class has been cancelled or moved.”
The success of the new application will be watched closely by other universities including Edinburgh Napier.
Neil Austin, Head of Customer Service for Student Affairs, at Edinburgh Napier is keen to speak to those involved in the application at Edinburgh University. Especially after UCAS have been promoting an application for student recruitment.
He told Edinburgh Napier News: “We haven’t actually heard about the app but any innovation that can help our students is something that interests us and are keen to look into.
“We will have to research the the cost and accessibility to see how many students would use it. By 2013 more people will be using the internet on their phone than on their PC. It is certainly the way forward.”
As word of David Beckham’s injury spreads, we talk to local expert Dr. Harry Burnett about what treatment is in store for the footballer.
Dr Burnett, is one of Scotland’s leading sports medicine physicians, is based at Care4Sports on Brunstfield Place, Edinburgh.
Our reporter, Anna Fenton, speaks to Matthew Moore, News Editor of The Journal and Constantine Innemee, Student News Editor tell Edinburgh Napier News their views on ‘Journalgate.’
By Myles Edwards and Suhayl Afzal
Newspapers are relying heavily on sports journalism to survive, according to leading journalists and academics.
The latest circulation figures from ABC (an independent auditor on media performance) show that sales of each quality daily and Sunday newspaper have fallen again in the year leading up to October.
Newspapers such as the The Guardian and The Observer have already ceased distribution of bulks (copies that readers can pick up free of charge from hotels and airlines), with the Times and the Sunday Times set to follow suit in January 2010.
The Sunday Times recorded a relatively low fall in circulation compared to that of other national newspapers, with a 3.37 percent drop in the past 12 months. This is partly down to the popularity of its comprehensive sports section.
Jonathan Northcroft, Football Correspondent with the Sunday Times, believes that sport is integral to the future of newspapers.
He said: “There has never been a greater interest in top end sport than there is right now. The Premier League is the most popular in the world, Test Cricket grosses more money than ever before and it’s the same for all the blue riband events such as the Olympics and Wimbledon.”
Mr Northcroft emphasised the importance of newspapers maintaining their high quality so that readership does not drop any further.
He added: “Sports journalism is delivering in a sector where people really want to consume content and will pay for exclusive news or to read a brilliantly written opinion piece.”
It could be argued that newspapers should not be overly dependant on sport in this difficult time for the media due to advertising downturns. The high profile demise of Setanta in the UK is evidence of this view.
However, Mark Ogden, Northern Football Correspondent with the Telegraph said: “Newspapers still have the greatest impact and set the agenda.
Academics also recognise the importance of the sport to the success of print media.
Michael Oriard, Professor of Literature and Culture at Oregon State University said sport both benefits from and contributes to success of newspapers.
He added: “Sport coverage attracts the reader, who in turn looks to daily newspapers to satisfy their growing desire for more and more sport.”
By Fiona Gardner and Lauren Redpath
Another 40,000 Scots are set to become unemployed next year according to a leading think tank.
Fraser of Allander Institute has predicted that Scotland’s economy won’t grow in 2010, despite the UK’s economic recovery already underway.
While businesses remain optimistic that the recession is coming to an end, the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) has warned that Britain’s unemployment figures could rise to nearly 10% of the population by 2011.
With more job losses predicted, the situation will become more difficult for those already looking for work.
Edinburgh Napier News spoke to Zia Jaimson, 24, who was made redundant 5 months ago and is still struggling to find a job.
“I’ve registered with agencies, handed CV’s in and I go to about 3 interviews a month but it’s so hard to get work because there is so much competition and people with more experience than me going for the same job.”
Miss Jaimson worked in IT for the computing company Dell for three years and found out in June this year that her position no longer existed.
“By law Dell had to try to re-locate me within the company but the job they offered me was so far out of my specialism that I couldn’t do it. Four of my colleagues were also laid off at the same time and none of them have found work yet either.
“I was given two months redundancy money which I have managed to last up until now but I need to find work as soon as possible.”
While job-hunting in central Edinburgh, Miss Jaimson told Edinburgh Napier News that she is doing part-time training to become a make-up consultant, to improve her chances of finding a job.
Speaking to the Daily Express, Scottish Tory Finance Spokesman, Derek Brownlee said, “Scotland has suffered hardest from Labour’s debt mountain, Labour’s jobs crisis and Labour’s recession.
“The fact remains that we were first in and last out of this downturn, and Scottish unemployment has rocketed by 50 per cent over the past year.”
The Britain’s Got Talent runner up’s first album I Dreamed a Dream is due to be released on Monday 23rd November and is predicted to top the album charts.
‘Su-bo’ will also be appearing on the X-Factor this Sunday to sing a track from her new album.
Julian Monagham, head of music buying at Amazon.co.uk told the Telegraph: “Just eight months ago, no one was aware of the talents of Susan Boyle. Now, she has generated more Amazon pre-order CD sales than any other artist.
“That is an incredible achievement and is testament to the fact that she has captured the hearts of people all over Britain, America and the rest of the world.”
Edinburgh Napier News caught up with one of Susan’s oldest friends, Suzanne Clifford, from her hometown Blackburn.
Suzanne says she remembers Susan’s singing: “I didn’t know that she could sing until she got up and sang in the pub one night and it was just absolutely amazing.”
Suzanne worked in the local pub where Susan would wow the punters singing songs from her favourite musicals every week on the karaoke.
Susan also toured with the pub band and entered competitions, so it was of no surprise to the people of Blackburn when Susan finally got her big break on Britain’s Got Talent.
Suzanne recalls the whole town getting behind Susan when she was on the talent show: “It was amazing because all the pubs and houses had banners and posters up everywhere saying ‘Go Susan’ and ‘Vote for Susan’.”
Watch the interview in full below: