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Budding authors welcome

Authors who are also Open University alumni will be gathering for an Alumni Authors' Day at the Library, Walton Hall campus, Milton Keynes on Thursday 10 February. The event aims to celebrate success and inspire budding authors. For details email or ring 01908 653815 by 4 February.

Saturn probe thrills scientists

Delighted space scientists at the Open University are busy analysing data from the successful Huygens probe. OU Professor John Zarnecki, principal scientist working on the Science Surface Package that landed on Saturn's moon Titan, said: "The quality of our data is absolutely stupendous, so there's a lot of work ahead."

Enter our photo competition

Can you capture an aspect of everyday life on film? Entries are still being taken for the Social Image photographic competition, which is looking for the best image or set of images to illustrate some aspect of human existence, whether a serious social issue or light-hearted event. Entries, colour or black-and-white, should be sent to Avis Lexton, The Social Image Competition 2005, The Open University, Walton Hall, Milton Keynes MK7 6AA, or see for details. Closing date 28 February.

Cancer charity policy explained

The head of Cancer Research UK Professor Alex Markham will outline how the charity sets its priorities and measures its progress. The Business of Fighting Cancer is the Open University Business School Annual Lecture, on Thursday 24 February at Church House, Westminster, London. Tickets available from or call 01908 652097.

Three new OU TV programmes Nation on film (starting Monday 21 February, 7.30 pm, BBC2) shows how the history of 20th-century Britain was captured by film-makers covering topics from sexual health to the 11 plus. In What the ancients did for us, (starting Tuesday 15 February, 8pm, BBC2) Adam Hart-Davis looks at how inventions made by the Romans, the Mesopotamians, the Aztecs and other ancient civilisations are part of our lives today. And the latest series of Rough Science (starting Tuesday 15 February, 7.30pm, BBC2) pits the resourceful boffins against the Indian Ocean.