Against the Tide: An Autobiographical Account of a by L.C Woods

By L.C Woods

In opposed to the Tide: An Autobiographical Account of a pro Outsider, Leslie Woods relates the interesting tale of his existence from fisherman's son in New Zealand to go of the Mathematical Institute on the collage of Oxford. After beginning at a alternate tuition, he gained a scholarship to a school, then joined the RNZAF, and later grew to become a fighter pilot within the Pacific. Woods then gained a Rhodes scholarship to Merton university in Oxford after WWII. Following numerous years of study in aerodynamics, he grew to become a professor of engineering on the college of latest South Wales. He additionally had a fellowship with Oxford's Balliol university and had a consultancy at Culham Laboratory the place he researched the speculation of magnetically constrained sizzling plasmas. In 1970, Woods turned a professor of plasma conception but turned dissatisfied with the fusion strength undertaking, which he believes survived on exaggerated claims of progress.Besides recounting his background, Woods explains why magnetic fusion has didn't be triumphant and descriptions the philosophy of technology to which he subscribes. He writes frankly approximately either his successes and screw ups and finishes with an account of his taking on gliding on the age of seventy four.

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We camped about half a mile from the coast near the banks of a river. The Assistant Scout Master, who was all of 18, was in charge and I helped him. Our food, principally bread, butter and jam, was stored in boxes. In true scouting tradition the meat was kept cool in string bags hung in the trees around us. Once when the younger boys were sent off to the river to have their morning wash, the ASM stayed at the camp to prepare breakfast—bread and butter, with sausages as a special treat. I returned from the river before the others to find him studiously removing prosperous maggots from the sausages before putting them into a frying pan.

I had to conceal this activity from the librarian, but I was careful not to press too hard with my pencil so that no damage was done. The southern skies boast 11 of the 19 first magnitude stars and, since they are often cloudless, the nights are brilliant. I soon became familiar with dozens of constellations and the names of the brightest stars in them. Orion stood on his head, with the dagger in his belt pointing ‘upward’. The Southern Cross, reproduced in the national flag, was my usual starting point, and expanding away from it, I was able to locate even quite small and unimportant constellations.

My name 38 Against the Tide was there, in 26th position—a close call. My French mark was 22%, with no wasted effort on that subject—just eight marks to spare! The individual marks in the five science subjects pleased me. My positions in New Zealand were: Additional Mathematics—2nd, Magnetism and Electricity—3rd, Mathematics—6th, Mechanics—6th and Heat—6th. In French it was easier to reckon my order from the bottom; only ten people had worse marks, so at the top of the page I entered the position as 11∗ .

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