Oxbridge Croquet Day, Sunday 8 April 2018

Juan Roberson reports: The last gasp of summer gave us a perfect day for croquet. Attendance was the usual mix of old hands and new blood - and both varieties did well….! Thanks to all who joined in to make the day a success; despite an unusually large number who were unable to attend at the last moment we still had around 25 for the day.

And thanks as always to our mentors; this year we had Rob Elliot, Alan Walsh, Neil Hardie and Ian Lucas who gave their time generously to coach the players and to Julian Todd for donating some of his fine wine as prizes.

After a social morning of free play, each of the Blues teams determined thier first pair and second pair on the day with an internal play off. For the LIght Blues Michael Wright / Graham Hall beat Andrew Fulton / Martin Maynard 4-3; for the Dark Blues Robin MIlls / Robert Laurie beat Chris Bertram / David Goodman 4-2.

In the final Blues Match, the Dark Blues prevailed. Last years winners, Robin and Robert beat this years challengers Michael and Graham 4-2. Playing for the minor places, the LIght Blues took third place with Andrew / Martin beating Chris / David 4-2.

The friendly competitive spirit is alive and well with both sides vowing to get in some sly practice between now and next year when the rivalry will, we hope, be played out on the lawns again.

HIstorically I can report that we have now had over 80 different individual participants over the past six years with a good number who have become regular attendees.


Thinking at Twilight, Wednesday 11 April 2018

Over 40 members and guests gathered at the Union, Universities & Schools Club to hear guest speaker Dr William Foster talk on The Joy of Insect Watching. Dr William Foster is Emeritus Curator of Insects, University Museum of Zoology and Fellow of Clare College.

Dr Foster discussed some episodes from over 40 years experience of observing the ecology and behaviour of insects in the field: from ocean striders in the mangrove lagoons of the Galapagos to soldier aphids in the parks and gardens of Kuala Lumpur; from social beetles in the high canopy of the Bornean rainforest to digger wasps in the sandy heaths of deepest Surrey.

Many Clare College alumni joined as William Foster has been a Fellow of Clare College since 1976. He was Director of Studies in Biological Sciences, Admissions Tutor, and Tutor for Widening Participation. He is currently the Secretary of the Clare Association. He has been a member of staff in the Department of Zoology since 1976, running research projects in the UK and Southeast Asia. He was also Curator of the Insect Collections in the University Museum of Zoology and Deputy Head of Department (Teaching).


Thinking at Twilight with Prof Toby Walsh, The A-Z of AI, Wed 7 March 2018

Prof Toby Walsh spoke to a packed audience at the Union Club. The development of thinking machines is an adventure as bold and ambitious as any that humans have attempted. And the truth is that Artificial Intelligence is already an indispensable part of our daily lives. Without it, Google wouldn’t have answers and your smartphone would just be a phone. But how will AI change society by 2050? Will it destroy jobs? Or even pose an existential threat?


Cricket Result vs Oxford, Sunday 11 February

Alistair Newmarch (organiser and CamSoc NSW committee member) writes: A great day out was had by all. Unfortunately Cambridge lost in a very tight game, Oxford batted first and scored 122 all out. Cambridge were all out in response for 106. Thank you to all players and supporters and to K&L Gates for sponsorsing the day.


Christmas Drinks for Cambridge Society of NSW Members, Thursday 7 December

Amrit Bahra (President) and Chris Dawson (Vice President) and committee members hosted the annual Christmas Drinks at the Union Club.