High Notes, Vol 6 No 33, November 04 2005
From the Principal
From the P & C
Please find following proposed rule changes to Sydney Boys High School Parent's and Citizens' Association Constitution
Proposed to be changed to:
Change of Date for Annual General Meeting of the P&C
Notice of Extra ordinary General Meeting of the P&C
Nominations for Office Bearers of the Sydney Boys High School P&C
Nominations are sought by interested High Parents to the following Executive positions on the P&C
Debating Supporters Group Annual General Meeting
Tuesday November 15th at 6.30pm Staff Common Room
What do Shakespeare and Mathematics have in common?
How Things Work: Mathematical Knots
(Photo by Michael Menchaca) A knot, in the mathematical sense, is a conventional knot on a closed loop. Thus, mathematical knots lack loose ends. This is a critical, fundamental difference between mathematical knots and the knots we tie every day. Regular knots can be easily untangled by manipulating the loose ends of a rope; mathematical knots cannot. Given this definition, a plain rubber band can also qualify as a mathematical knot. This loop — a complete circle — is indeed a special kind of mathematical knot and is given its own name: the unknot
Surely at this point, some of you are scratching your heads. If an unknot is just a loop, is it possible to untangle a mathematical knot into an unknot? Think about it. If a mathematical knot can be transformed into an unknot without cutting it up and gluing it back together, the knot never existed in the first place — and knot theory is in trouble. If one can prove that it is impossible to transform a knot into an unknot, however, the existence of knots is proven — and knot theory is saved.
Proving the existence of knots was a longstanding challenge in knot theory. In the 1930s, Kurt Reidemeister took a step in that direction by showing that all transformations between knots can be reduced to three basic moves. These moves — the twist, the cross, and the poke — are collectively referred to as the Reidemeister moves. Two mathematical knots are topologically equivalent if one knot can be transformed into the other by a finite series of twists, crosses, and pokes. If Reidemeister moves are incapable of transforming a knot into an unknot, the existence of knots is proven.
The proof itself is surprisingly intuitive, and can be followed by drawing a trefoil knot as a curve on a sheet of paper, with breaks where the knot crosses itself. It has three sections. These sections can be coloured with three different colours so that at each crossing, the three sections involved have either the same colour, or three different colours — a property called tricolorability. Reidemeister moves preserve tricolorability, but the single-loop “unknot” has only one section and thus one colour. So no amount of twisting and pulling can turn a tricoloured knot into a single-coloured unknot.
Why knots? The fascination with knots began in the 1800s, when scientists still believed that a luminiferous ether pervaded the universe. Lord Kelvin proposed that every element should have a distinct signature based on its entanglement with the ether, prompting mathematicians and scientists alike to conjure up pictures of knots. Although the theory about luminiferous ether was eventually disproved, mathematicians continued to pursue knot theory on purely abstract grounds for over a century.
In the 1980s, knot theory again found itself at the forefront of science — this time in biology. DNA can be visualized as a convoluted knot that has been stretched, coiled and packed into the cell’s nucleus. Topoisomerase enzymes must quickly untangle this knot to allow replication and transcription to occur. By modelling DNA as a closed loop, scientists were able to obtain a quantitative measure of DNA packing. Topology also allowed researchers to examine the enzyme’s ability to untangle and tangle complicated knots in a quick and efficient manner.
Other esoteric and far-flung applications of knot theory are delightful to peruse at one’s
leisure. Interested readers can check out molecular knots and topological stereoisomers in Erica
Flapan’s When Topology Meets Chemistry. Physicists can flip through Dirk Kreimer’s
Knots and Feynman Diagrams. The ardent non-scientist is encouraged to take his shoelace and
explore the 800 ways to tie it to his desk. I, for one, am profoundly impressed that this is an
entire article on knots — with knot one pun.
Results of Science quiz No 12
Flying Dinosaurs (Part 2)
1. Identify the name and size of the dinosaur fossils he studied. The name of this curiously shaped dinosaur was Microraptor gui. This prehistoric bird would have been the very first feathered creature in the air. The most unusual feature of this bird was the oddly shaped bi-plane design of its wings. Like normal flying creatures the Microraptor has a set of wings on its arms but it also had a pair of wings on its legs.
2. Compare the evolutionary stages of aircraft and flying dinosaurs. Just like aircraft evolution, the evolution of the Microraptor started off with the biplane design and then later on became monoplane. Like the Wright brothers who in 1903 launched the first plane, the Microraptor also invented the biplane.
3. Do you think that this is a reliable theory? This seems a reliable theory, but,
there are also other theories which have been put into place by other palaeontologists. (The
Chinese palaeontologists who uncovered and reassembled the skeleton of the Microraptor
have a theory that the Microraptor would have flapped its wings in tandem like a modern
Words of Wisdom
Peace of mind comes from not wanting to change others, but by simply accepting them as they are
True acceptance is always without demands and expectations.
The Scientia Challenge Program
If you enjoy learning at a faster pace and a higher level, stretching your mental muscles, would like to immerse yourself in an area you are passionate about, and meet other people who share your interests at the same time, then Scientia is the right program for you.
The workshops will be held at venues on the Kensington Campus of the UNSW on Thursday 19th January and Friday 20th January 2006. The cost is usually $266 for the two day program, however, Sydney High will pay the fee for twelve of our top students (3 students from each year 7 -10). To qualify, each student must be on the School’s academic merit list for 2005.
Interested students will need to submit a one page expression of interest document, outlining why you should be chosen for this program. (Recommendation from a teacher would be viewed favourably) Successful candidates will be determined by the Talent Development Committee. These students will be expected to present a report to fellow students on their Scientia experience sometime during Term 1. (Applications need to be submitted as soon as possible)
Information about the program (workshop topics) is available from Mr T Dolan, Social Sciences Department.
Tom Dolan Talent
Democracy Week 2005
EVERY VOICE COUNTS!
The story to of my trip to Canberra to take place in Democracy week begins in mid term 3 when Ms Brewer brought forward an application form to participate in Every Voice Counts! With just one day before closing I got my application written and in on time. In week ten I received the news that my application had been successful and the challenge was then being able to fit this great opportunity in with my first two HSC exams…
The issue for this year’s forum was titled “Water: a fundamental human right”. This was an issue that affects Australians all over the country and would prove to be a politically based issue when examined on a global basis.
I packed up and was ready by 3pm and left for the Domestic terminal and my flight, which was incredibly short..
After landing, we introduced ourselves and got well acquainted with the NSW and SA students. We arrived at the Diplomat Hotel where we saw that many of the other students had already arrived. After dinner we got to sleep except the NT, WA and Queensland students arrived much later into the night.
The next day we were all excited as we were going to Parliament House as well as meeting the Minister for Education, Science and Training, Brendan Nelson. Most of the teachers were asking us if we wanted to be politicians but there was only one girl whom I remember who really wanted that responsibility.
At the front steps, we met Jeff from Parliament House Education Office. He gave us an interesting insight into the way parliament operated and what everything symbolised from the green carpet to the oak tree leaves. We also got an experience of the high-security measures placed at parliament house as we weren’t allowed to take our cameras or mobile phones into either the senate or the House of Reps. We observed both houses at work but to our dismay, Jeff explained that the politicians rarely sat all at once unless it was a house vote. When that happened, a bell would ring inside the compound and red lights would flash on all the clocks in every room.
After that it was time to meet the minister who had arranged to meet us and to formally open the forum. He was much pleased to see us and after thanking the NCS he provided us a very interesting insight into how he viewed the world. He was very knowledgeable from what he said and seemed to really admire history as he continually referred to quotes from Socrates and Mahatma Ghandi. After that it was time for questions. Originally Dr. Nelson (he was a full time doctor and the President of the AMA before he joined politics) was going to ask us questions but then decided to make himself vulnerable to students’ questions. Students asked questions ranging form the VSU, to tolerance towards the Muslim community, dumping of nuclear wastes and the new Tasmanian L-study programs.
He even praised our school after I told him that I was from Sydney Boys’ High School - what an honour! This is evidence to prove the fact that truly all of us are very fortunate to be in such a famous institution. However, he never really answered anyone’s questions but rather “danced around them” as some students put it. There also started a bit of an in-house debate where Dr. Nelson and the 2 members for NT debated points on the dumping of nuclear waste issue.
After that we had our photo taken (by a special photographer) with the minister as well as our local members. I was fortunate enough to see my local member for Banks who was a really nice person. It’s funny how politicians become all kind and generous in front of young people, just as Bob Carr did last year when we went to promote the new commerce syllabus. We continued on with the program with lunch with the MPs followed by witnessing a press conference where John Howard stood on a pedestal in front of the media to speak about a deceased politician.
This session was followed by a mock senate inquiry where I got to be a senator with 6 other students. Here we listened to different groups of students who represented various bodies of people who are concerned about water use. That was a challenging and interesting exercise to understand how senate inquiries function in real life.
After that we went to Parliament Shop to buy some souvenirs. We hopped onto the bus and arrived just in time to get changed for dinner. Dinner was good but after that we had 2 hours of fun time where we were involved in some theatre sport games conducted by the man who participated in Australia’s first ever Theatre Sports television show, Gerry Kay.
On day three we discussed the issue regarding water as a fundamental human right. We took the bus to old parliament house where we listened to three talks by people from different people around the country as they described their perspectives on the issue. First was an Aboriginal man from the Kimberley Region whose community was facing a great water crisis because the WA government was going to pump water from their area to Perth. The next speaker was a worker in the Murray-Darling and spoke passionately about ways that water can be saved as well as outlining his reservation against Australian rice growers producing rice with greater input costs than their Asian competitors thus exploiting the limited water supply. And finally a spokesperson from World Vision provided a global perspective to the issue.
Following that we got into groups to write up reports that we would send to DEST. This was a challenging and interesting exercise that aimed to prove that every voice does count because students from all over the country were able to project their views. However, it is evident that many people’s voices have not been heard in Australia even today in regards to the terrorism issue.
We then visited the Australian Museum. This museum is quite unique in that it runs on the three parallel themes of Land, People and Nation. We then drove on to Screensound, which is Australia’s film and sound archive. This was an exhibition area that showcased Australian audio and video archives from the first ever Australian feature film (a silent one) called Ned Kelly to recent shows such as Home and Away and Neighbours. Then it was a quick walk back to the hotel to get changed for pizza night.
Pizza night was held in a local restaurant at Kingston where people pigged out on many different pizzas - always a great time. Everyone then trudged home in the rain as a storm was approaching the Australian capital.
On the final day we headed back once more to Old Parliament House to work on reports regarding social issues that we were interested in. I wandered around working on different issues ranging form multiculturalism and cultural acceptance to the Iraq War, parents giving more attention to their children and even the dumping of nuclear waste in the NT.
After a quick lunch it was an opportunity to gather each other’s email addresses, pay our thanks to the facilitators and give our reports to a woman from the DEST. At about 2:30 we eventually said our goodbyes and the NT and NSW people (there were 6 of us) left for Canberra airport.
This was a truly a very great experience which I really will cherish for many years to come. I am very grateful to Ms Brewer and Ms Cradock who helped me compose the application and for providing me with this unique opportunity.
On a final note I feel that students in our school (seeing that we are so well known around the
country) should get more involved in these sorts of activities and represent their school at a
national level. There are various programs (which I first learnt about there) including the
Simpson’s Prize (a trip to a WWI site) as well as Youth Parliament that runs every year.
Closer to home there’s a new social justice group being formed under Amnesty International
by some students in Year 11 that everyone in all grades should get involved with. I feel that
many students in this school are apathetic to various social issues that confront them and
don’t often understand the problems that are faced by people within Sydney let alone the
world. To become better all round citizens with a global basis, one must first expand one’s
own experiences of the world and its diversity.
The senior selection was held on Monday October 31 at SIRC at Penrith. The day was full of drama and thanks to the monumental effort of the coaches, Oliver Wilson, Mark Prater and Dave Luscombe along with coaching director Michael Doyle as well as the support team of Chris Watson and Tim Wilson things panned out in the end.
The school minibus left at 6.00am from the school to head to Penrith with Chris Watson in charge. Dave Luscombe towed the boats from the sheds and all arrived together at Penrith to allow the sculling time trial to begin before 8.00am.
James Tiedgen recorded the fastest sculling time with Sam Gribble placed second. All other rowers had to go through seat racing to gain their place in the first and second VIIIs. Crews are provisional at this stage with Andrew Pham being the only Year 10 rower in the firsts. The seat racing is based on margins between crews with different combinations and racing was so tight that more races than normal were required to differentiate the crews this year. The second selection for these crews takes place on January 18.
Seat racing was made possible by the new coxswains, Jason Phu, Gareth Deacon and Oleg willingly rising to the challenge.
The day proved to be long and eventful with the school bus not returning until 6pm. The car towing the boats had radiator problems and as we waited patiently for a very tardy Lube Mobile, thunderstorms with possible hail closed in on our boats. Centre management allowed us to push the boats under an awning and we left for home.
The next day the Wilson family, Tim and Oliver, came to the rescue and drove up to Penrith and brought both the boats and repaired vehicle back to Abbotsford. Many thanks to these stalwarts of Sydney High Rowing.
The senior VIIIs will be competing in the Loreto Normanhurst Regatta at Penrith on November 12.
Junior crews have only been placed in tentative crews at this stage and their formal selection
will take place on the days outlined in the Rowing Calendar.
From the High Store
Year 10 Boys - Get in early to purchase you senior uniform and avoid the back to school hassles and queues.
The High Store is now fully stocked with your senior needs.
Senior Tie $25-00 Trousers $59-00 Shirts: Short Sleeve - 16-22 $21-00 - 24-28 $23-00 Long Sleeve - 16-22 $22-00 - 24-28 $24-00Return to Index
3rd X1 Cricket Report
High Cricket Bulletin
MIC AROUND THE GROUNDS
Elsewhere, High Group 1 teams were locked into some interesting Day 2 battles which had to be decided with bat and ball over the next 8 hours with some outstanding results. The 1st XI in battle at McKay No 1 were just short of an outright victory after securing a first innings win, whilst the 2nd XI, not to be outdone, secured outright victory at Scots Main by 6 wickets. Full reports appear herein. The 3rd XI chasing a mammoth 9 for 504 set by Scots on Day 2 set about having the last say, and pulled off one of the most remarkable results I have witnessed in my time at High. Theirs was a mixture of pride, commitment, fortitude and a determination not to be beaten and they achieved that goal by batting for 64 overs and holding Scots to a draw. Our congratulations to the team on the moral victory achieved. The 16As also pulled off a remarkable outright win, hitting 19 runs in the last 2 overs of the day to secure victory.
Across the board there was a marked difference in the approach of all team members in all our sides, and there appeared to be a belief that we can more than match some of our counterparts at other schools and that we like that “winning feeling” and intend to up the ante in future matches.
Separate reports on these performances will appear herein as I believe it is only fitting that the coaches and team players report as they saw the results. From all at High, well done on a very successful Round 1.
In other news, Randwick Petersham Grade Club have sponsored our Year 7 and 8 groups, and last Thursday week we welcomed Richard Chee Quee, a former NSW Pura Cup and ING One Day specialist who spent time in the nets with our boys and then passed on fielding tips over the 2 hours he spent with us. Last Thursday we had the company of Arun Harinath (Surrey County 2nd XI) and Chris Whelan (Middlesex County 2nd XI) who are both prospective England players and they spent time with our bowlers and batsmen in the nets. Our appreciation is extended to the Randwick Petersham Grade Club for supporting High on a sponsorship basis and for the valuable input.
AGM RESULTS are now in and at the meeting on Wednesday 26th October, Dr. Andrew Bowes took
over as President of the Cricket Sub-Committee. The full committee appears on the Cricket
Website. We are still looking for support in our junior teams and ask parents to support their
sons by allocating one morning or afternoon on a Saturday to assist in a team roster. Please
contact me via email, my details appear on the Cricket Website
16As – After bowling Scots out for 107 and scoring 3/163 on the first day, the 16As
continued their good form and amassed 246, skipper Peranathan falling just 4 short of a century.
The team went into bowl again with a lead of 139, and it was again the spinners that took control
for High, Sutton and Bowes bamboozling the Scots batsmen. Scots were bowled out for 157. The
deficit 19 runs had to be achieved in the remaining 2 overs of the day, and Lochner who had
sub-fielded for 2nds and taken a screamer of a catch earlier in the day hit the winning runs with
only one ball to spare. All players gave more than 100% and deserved the result.
The 2nd XI not only began the season with an outright victory, but they learnt plenty
about cricket in their match against Scots. After having Scots in a difficult position the
previous week at 8/52, they struggled to finish off the tail and Scots fell only 5 runs short of
avoiding the follow-on. But High put Scots back in to bat and dismissed them again for 98 runs.
That left a deficit of only 19 to secure maximum points. High lost four wickets in the process of
achieving that target. Everyone that was dismissed wanted to hit a boundary for the winning runs
when all that was required was 19 singles. That was the only mark on a superb all-round
performance, especially from skipper Blaxell who bagged 5 wickets in the first innings, and Quazi
and Lunney who made significant contributions in the second innings.
The 1st XI only narrowly missed outright victory at McKay and have their season back on
track after a good day 2. The remaining Scots 1st innings wickets fell early on day 2, including
2 run outs. After another tough start in the 2nd innings, the boys applied themselves and
eventually scored a quick-fire 4(dec)/134. This gave Scots the tantalizing prospect of outright
victory themselves, requiring 172 from 32 overs. Our bowlers rallied late and almost did the job.
The success of the 1st XI caps an excellent round for High cricket.
Good luck to all sides playing this Saturday against Riverview.
Answer 6: The 1st XI premiership trophy is called the A.A.G.P.S. Challenge Shield for
Cricket, and was first awarded in 1893.
Fundraising: Coordinator Positions Vacant
(1) BBQ’S AT BUNNINGS WAREHOUSE – MASCOT
The School Family has been fortunate in being allocated the Community BBQ Facility at Mascot Bunnings to raise funds from the wider community.
A coordinator is needed to liaise with Bunnings and the School Groups
(Minimal paper work involved), and catalogue a communal Kit of equipment (paper goods, utensils, signage etc.) which is issued prior to the barbeque.
Sydney Boys is allocated a date 3-4 times a year.
(2) COFFEE CO ORDINATOR
Twice a Term a Coffee Order will be made available to the School Family with all fund raised added to the New Library and Performing Arts Space Fund.
A Volunteer is required for 1-2 Hrs to place notifications of order and delivery dates in the High Notes, collate orders and fax to the supplier.
Please contact Valda Roser email
or Ph:9361 6910 ext 144 for further
Fundraising: Coffee Drive
ORDER FORMS HOME LAST FRIDAY
THANK YOU to those who have already been asking contact people to support the project. People like to help and make a difference. They cannot help unless you ask! Keep up the good work.
When each family places a combined order for 3Kgs of Coffee we can expect a return of greater than $25,000 for the Library Fund!
Last Orders accepted 15 November (Tuesday) end of Lunch
All Order Forms and money to Cashier’s Booth at Main Office Please
Help required to collate orders and for distribution on above dates.
State of the Arts
Music Committee AGM.
Congratulations to the following boys for their outstanding results in their recent AMEB
Music Awards Dinner and Tutors Concert
Draft of the SYDNEY BOYS HIGH SCHOOL MUSIC TOUR September / October 2006
Canteen Price List
Open Hours 8:30am - 1:40pmLunch Orders
Lunch Orders can be placed from 8:30 to 9:00am
It is to your advantage to pre-order lunches: it saves waiting in queues - students picking up a lunch order can do so from the side canteen window - and ensures you get what you want.
Breakfast is also available during this before-school time.
Prices effective 31.01.2005 Minor price changes will occur as a direct result of increases by