Free physics software for THS pupils!

The Physics department has purchased a 1 year site license for a really smart software package called Crocodile Physics.  The terms of the license allow any pupil in the school to download a copy for home use.  If you are interested, mac and windows versions of the software can be obtained by going to and logging in with the user name “student.thurso” and the password your teacher will give you (I can’t publish the password here).  Select Crocodile Physics from the drop-down menu and log in.  Go to the download section to get your copy of the software.

The site also contains sample models for you to download and try out.  Ask me if you want to know more about them.

Physics video competition on

I mentioned the 2007 Phylm competition to some of you this week. An American teacher has put up a prize of $100 for the best short film on a physics topic. The Phylm Prize, pronounced “film,” is an award aimed at spurring interest in physics and the educational use of new media.

The legal stuff and entry details are available in this competition rules document and there is an explanation available online in this youtube video clip.

Why am I telling you this? Well, the school has suitable digital video equipment and editing software† available to help anyone interested in producing a high quality entry – all you need is an idea for a film. Best of all, the money and prestige are all yours.

Think about it.

†If you ask nicely, you might get to use a shiny white apple laptop with iMovie.

S4 reaction times

When we started the transport unit a couple of weeks ago, we investigated the reaction times of different people in the class by getting them to time how long it took for Andrew’s plasticine to fall from the ceiling to the floor.

I found a great game on the BBC website that will allow you to measure (and perhaps improve) your own reaction time .  Why don’t you try it for yourself and post your best times in a comment.