The 5 live blog
BBC disability correspondent
For many disabled people who can’t walk it’s not the most important thing. What’s important is being able to work, to socialize, to live independently. I’ve never walked well but I did, up until I started to fall over more than I stood up.
Until the age of 25 I was flying solo, walking unaided, not so much unaided towards the end. For over 10 years I’ve mostly got around using my mobility scooter and I’m old enough to not worry about that now. But didn’t think I’d get the chance to walk again.
It was in the summer that I became the BBC’s Disability Correspondent and one of our very first stories was on the technology helping disabled people to walk again, using a robotic suite called an exoskeleton. We pegged our piece to the World Cup opening ceremony, a night that saw paraplegic Juliano Pinto kick the first ball wearing the very latest technology, an exoskeleton that’s controlled by the wearer’s brain signals. The more I looked into it, the more I started to realize that even…
BBC Radio 5 live
By Rob Procter, Professor of Social Informatics at Warwick University and Alex Voss, Lecturer in Software Engineering, University of St Andrews
The use of social media has grown at an astonishing rate over the past decade. Daily, Twitter users now post 500 million tweets, Facebook users communicate over 120 million messages and YouTube users upload 140,000 hours of video. This all adds up to a huge amount of interesting content. Most importantly, social media has given ordinary people a way of expressing their own interests and sharing them with their peers. The desire to discover and report on what is popular in social media is what lies behind the 5 live Hit List.
Every week, using specially developed algorithms for analyzing social media data streams to identify each story, evaluate and rank its impact, members of Collaborative Online Social Media Observatory (COSMOS), an interdisciplinary team of sociologists and computer scientists at Cardiff, Warwick and St Andrews…
BBC Radio 5 live
By Tim Levell, editor of the evening and overnight programmes on 5 live
Four hundred and nine years ago a plot to blow up Parliament, kill James I and overturn the existing political regime was thwarted in the early hours of the morning of 5 November.
A search party found Guy Fawkes hiding in an undercroft beneath the House of Lords, together with a number of barrels of gunpowder and several slow matches. One of the biggest threats to British democracy in the nation’s history had been averted.
In 2014, after Scotland rejected independence, the Prime Minister David Cameron stood outside Downing Street to propose some of the biggest changes to the UK constitution for decades. He talked about a “new and fair” constitutional settlement for the whole of the United Kingdom – partly in response to the idea of “English votes for English laws”.
Speaking to 5 live on 31 October, the Labour leader Ed Miliband agreed that the the issues thrown up by devolution needed to be looked at. “I want a proper constitutional convention which brings people together… to say, let’s be governed in the right way.”
So change is coming. But what could it look like?
On Phil Williams’…
BBC Radio 5 live
by Adam Brimelow, Health and Science correspondent
I spend a lot of time reporting on the devastating impact of problems such as obesity, smoking and excessive drinking. By comparison the threat posed by inactivity gets a lot less airtime, even though it leads to millions of deaths around the world every year from heart disease, cancer and diabetes*.
It's been called the ‘Inactivity…
Producer 5 live
Former Culture Secretary Maria Miller said sexting is an ‘epidemic’ which is on the increase and is spreading to primary schools.
“It’s now frankly something that children accept as part of their everyday life right from primary school age and all the research shows it’s a growing trend,” said Mrs Miller.
The MP also said more has to be done to help young people understand the…
BBC Radio 5 live
Simon Green is a 38-year-old wheelchair user from Bridgend. He explains why he feels disabled people are being failed by the justice system.
While the tragic deaths of people like Steven Simpson from Barnsley make the news and the very nasty incidents of bullying, verbal abuse and physical attacks can often be investigated, it is low level incidents that affect people more often.
I was born…
Yes or no, which are you? That's the only question in Scotland at the moment. I get asked it a lot myself when I interview referendum campaigners from both sides. I was even asked it by our own Richard Bacon.
When it happens, I make like Zippy - the kids' tv character who has a zip instead of a mouth. Honestly I'm glad my job demands strict neutrality. This story of high passion combined…
Will a new volcanic eruption in Iceland cause travel chaos for air passengers in the UK? In 2010 the eruption of Eyjafjallajökull led to flights across northern Europe being grounded for several days due to the hazard to engines from volcanic dust. Could a new eruption have the same impact? Broadcast meteorologist Simon King on how much we should worry...
The Icelandic Met Office have…
What a summer it has been in Scotland - like no other that I can remember over the last 20 years. It started with the Commonwealth Games in July. It will end with the Scottish Independence Referendum in September.
And when it's all over, we'll look back and realise that we've seen and witnessed things that have never happened before in Scotland, and might never happen again.
So we set out…