MAY 2015

Classic Golf in Scotland

by: Morgan Clarke (reading – 6.4. - 12.4.)

For people who take golf holidays, golf breaks in Scotland represent the quintessential golfing retreat. There are three main reasons for this. Firstly, Scotland has all the best courses – including the world-class Turnberry, St Andrews and Gleneagles, all offering the most fantastic golf holidays available. Secondly, the scenery is unparalleled and provides the perfect backdrop to a round of golf. Scotland’s rugged mountains, lush green valleys, thundering waterfalls and ethereal mists all help to create an experience you can really savour. Thirdly, Scotland always is easy to get to, either by road, train or air travel.

Anyone who plans a golf break in Scotland is also probably influenced by knowledge of the country's long-standing affiliation with the game. It is widely accepted that golf originated in Scotland in the 1100s, with the first recorded game played at Bruntsfield Links in Edinburgh, Scotland, in 1456.

Even the word ‘golf’ comes from Scotland - it is thought to have come from the Scots word ‘goulf’, meaning ‘to strike or cuff’. When the game was in its early days and, in fact, right up until the mid-20th century, it was usually played with clubs made from hickory wood, which is why golf played with old-fashioned wooden clubs is now called ‘hickory golf’.

Traditional hickory golf is catching on in a big way. You see, there’s a big secret haunting the manufacturers of modern golf clubs - despite all the ‘improvements’ in golf club technology, you can hit nearly as far with clubs made the original way – with hickory - as you can with the latest club being promoted on the US PGA Tour. What’s more, with hickory golf clubs you can play the game the way it was designed to be played - playing around the bunkers, through the gaps and really thinking about the challenge of the hole.

There are tournaments all over the world for modern-day hickory golf players, and for the last three years one particular tournament has been held in Scotland - golf’s birthplace. The 2007 World Hickory Open took place last month at Craigielaw golf course in East Lothian. As a golf course, Craigielaw is scenically located on the shores of the Firth of Forth with the hills of Fife framing its magnificent backdrop.

Craigielaw golf course presents a challenge for both short and long handicap players. As a result, the course is a popular for golf breaks in Scotland for players at every level. The layout at Craigielaw is such that the wind is nearly always part of the course’s natural defence. The consensus among both pro and amateur golf players is that the organisers picked a course almost perfectly suited to hickory golf.

There is a special physical sensation that hickory golf clubs give you. You know if you’ve hit a good one just by the lovely feeling coming through your hands and you also know if you’ve hit a bad one (especially in a cold Scottish wind) as it feels like a cricket ball has landed on your knuckles!

I managed to come third in the Amateur section, no disgrace but I’m coming back for more. And at last I know what I want from Father Christmas – All the best hickory golf clubs: Persimmon woods with True Temper shafts, a set of matching hickory irons pre-1935, a Cleveland wedge and sand wedge and a Scotty Cameron putter.

About The Author

Morgan Clarke is the Chairman of Your Golf Holidays, a company which has been providing golf breaks in Scotland for over 25 years. The award-winning specialist tour operator is privately-owned and determined to ensure that both experienced golfers and novices will enjoy an unforgettable experience in whichever of the 20+ countries they wish to play.



Welcome To Miami

by: Terry Hely (reading – 13.4. - 19.4.)

Miami is a sub-tropical city, climatically very different from most places in the USA. The city is a cosmopolitan playground that attracts more visitors than any other US destination.

Miami appeals to holiday makers wanting warm sun, clean sandy beaches, a laid back lifestyle, sophisticated entertainment in clubs and bars and a mix of art, music and international cuisines.

Travelers visiting Miami may actually spend their time in Miami Beach, a separate municipality situated 4 miles (6 km) across Biscayne Bay from downtown Miami. The combined greater Miami area includes several ethnic neighborhoods such as Little Havana and Little Haiti.

The population of the Greater Miami Area is a 50% mix of assorted Hispanic and the diverse cultural mix is evident in Latin American languages. Cuisine and music throughout the city and dining in Miami offers the opportunity to visit a different ethnic restaurant every night and enjoy diverse international cuisines.

Once upon a time, Miami attracted mostly retirees turning their backs on snowy, colder climates but nowadays it attracts the ultra-chic glitterati, cashed up yuppies, the boating and yachting fraternity and Cuban immigrants.

** Miami Vacation Attractions

Greater Miami is a great base for access to several major Florida holiday attractions. The northern tip of the Florida Keys is just off shore, the Everglades are just a short distance inland and the affluent enclaves of Palm Beach and Boca Roton are just a short distance along the coast.

The Miami Beach Promenade, aka South Beach, is a favorite spot for cyclists, skaters, joggers and skateboarders. This is the most instantly recognized beach front location in existence and the place to be seen if appearances are important.

Many of the early Miami buildings from the early 1900's have been restored. A walking tour around the South Beach precinct is recommended to see the spectacular rejuvenation of the 1920's buildings in the Art Deco Historic District.

Miami boasts fine museums, galleries, historic gardens, zoos, sports stadiums, spring fed natural pools and of course, the ever present golf courses. Greater Miami has lots to brag about when it comes to world class golf courses and is home to some of the most testing courses in the world.

** Miami Vacation Cruises

The busiest cruise ship center of any city in the USA is the Port of Miami with holiday cruises to the Caribbean and Latin America making up the bulk of these cruises, but there are also cruises to all parts of the world.

Cruises are usually well equipped for gambling and casinos open as soon as the ship passes into international waters. Non stop food, games, movies and onboard activities ensure guests are always entertained and well fed.

** Miami Hotels & Resorts

Miami visitors are offered a range of hotels, resorts and vacation rentals to satisfy all tastes and budgets. There's accommodation and prices to suit everyone, ranging from the restored boutique hotels in the Art Deco and South Beach district, modern glass and chrome high rise hotels, budget hostels, beach front condos and villas, serviced apartments, inns and guesthouses ... it's your choice.

** Miami Vacation Transport

Miami International Airport is one of the major airports in the USA, and a major hub city for American Airlines. Major domestic airlines such as Delta, Northwest/KLM, United and US Airways and Continental all serve Miami as well as several economy carriers.

There are two Amtrak trains that run daily from New York down to Miami and the travel time is approximately 27 hours.

The Metro-Dade Transit Agency runs two Miami rail systems, one being Metrorail which is a modern elevated commuter train that connects downtown Miami and the southern suburbs. Metromover is an elevated line looping the downtown precinct and connecting with many of the important attractions, shopping and business districts.

Tri Rail is the south Florida commuter train service that connects Miami with North Palm Beach and all centers in between.

About The Author

Terry Hely specializes in travel destination guides as planning resources for holiday makers. Find out more about Miami vacations from his page at www.go-florida.net/miami.htm



The Invention of the Atomic Clock

by: Steve Gink (reading – 20.4. - 26.4.)

Louis Essen was born in 1908 in a small city in England called Nottingham. His childhood was typical of the time and he pursued his education with enjoyment and dedication. At the age of 20 Louis graduated from the University of Nottingham, where he had been studying. It was at this time that his career started to take off, as he was invited to join the NPL, or National Physics Laboratory.

It was during Louis’s time at the NPL that he began working to develop a quartz crystal oscillator as he believed they were capable of measuring time as accurately as a pendulum based clock. Ten years after joining the NPL Louis had invented the Essen ring. This was an eponymous invention which took its name from the shape of the quartz which Louis had used in his latest clock and which was three times more accurate than the previous versions.

Louis soon moved on to newer areas of research and began to study ways to measure the speed of light. During World War II he began to work on high frequency radar and used his technical ability to develop the cavity resonance wavemeter. From 1946 it was this wavemeter which he used, along with a colleague by the name of Albert Gordon-Smith, to make his lightspeed measurements. It has been acknowledged recently that Louis’s measurements were by far the most accurate to have been recorded up until that time.

During the early part of the 1950’s Louis began to take an interest in research which was being carried out at the National Bureau of Standards (NBS) in the United States of America. He learnt that work was being carried out to invent a clock which was more accurate than any other. The American scientists were using the idea of maintaining a clock’s accuracy by using the radiation emitted or absorbed by atoms. At that time the Americans were using a molecule of ammonia but Louis felt that this was not working as well as if they were using different atoms, such as hydrogen or caesium, and so he began working on his own clock using these materials instead.

1953 saw Louis and a colleague, Jack Parry, receiving permission to develop an atomic clock at the NPL based on Louis’s existing knowledge of quartz crystal oscillators and other relevant techniques he had learned from the cavity resonance wavemeter he had previously designed. Only two years later Louis's first atomic clock was running, Caesium I, designed by the UK scientists. Development in the United States had all but stopped due to political difficulties.

Louis continued to work on his atomic clock and by 1964 he had managed to increase the accuracy of the atomic clock from one second in 300 years to one second every 2000 years! The continued success of Louis’s work resulted in the definition of a second being changed from 1/864000 of a mean solar day to being calculated as the time it took for 9192631770 cycles of the radiation in an atomic clock.

Louis Essen died in 1997 and before his death had been honoured with, amongst others, an OBE and the Tompion Gold Medal of the Clockmakers Company.

About The Author

Steve Gink uses atomic clocks, you can find his articles about them at atomic clocks or visit www.atomic-clocks.org the site contains information about atomic clocks and some images.



Top 5 Resume Lies

by: Tsuyoshi Suzuki (reading – 27.4. - 3.5.)

While exaggerated and false résumé claims have always been an issue, job candidates are more likely than ever to lie on applications and résumés in these difficult economic times. Unfortunately, small businesses are more negatively impacted by falsified credentials and/or fraudulent job claims, as every employee in a small company has a significant impact on overall performance, employee morale and the bottom line. Compounding this problem is the fact that applicants are more inclined to lie to small businesses because they believe that these companies are less likely to conduct pre employment background checks.

A recent report compiled by HireRight outlined the five most common lies told by job candidates to potential employers. Here are the highlights of that report for you to keep a close eye on when you’re hiring:

1. Exaggerating dates of past employment – It is estimated that as many as 34% of all resumes include discrepancies related to previous employment.

2. Falsifying the degree or credential earned – Approximately 20% of job candidates exaggerate or lie about education qualifications.

3. Inflating salary or job title – This is a common issue, as most job candidates are looking to get a better job or a higher salary.

4. Concealing a criminal record – Statistics show that about 11% of all background checks return a criminal record.

5. Hiding a drug habit – Since 42% of Americans admit to having used an illegal drug in their lifetime, screening candidates for drug use is a good idea.

Performing employment history and educational background checks, criminal record checks and pre employment drug testing will help to determine if the candidate you’re looking to hire is being honest, or if they’ve told one of these five top lies.

About The Author

Shelley Phelps is a Background Screening Specialist with Corporate Investigations, Inc. (www.ciilink.com ), a national provider of background check services headquartered in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania.

Visit the author's web site at: www.ciilink.com