Voices President Obama with Vice-President Joe Biden

Oh Mr Biden! Who is it? A flame from the 60s? The classmate you used to moon with out the window of the school bus? Someone dressed in exactly the same suit? Hillary Clinton yawning? WHO MADE YOU SO HAPPY?

Letters: IT skills

IT skills are vital for today's young

Album: Various Artists, Lumières: Music Of The Enlightenment (Harmonia Mundi)

It might seem a fool's errand to attempt to encapsulate the musical developments of the 18th century in a single package, given the era's heavyweight talents include Bach, Vivaldi, Beethoven, Mozart and Haydn.

The Charity That Began At Home, Orange Tree, Richmond

The remarkable Orange Tree Theatre in Richmond will enter its fifth decade on January 1 2012. One of its many virtues is a knack for unearthing fascinating rarities, especially from the Edwardian era.

Music: I bet you think this book is about you...

Books Of The Year

Top Boy, Channel 4, Monday to Thursday
Louis Theroux: America's Most Dangerous Pets, BBC2, Sunday

Any drama about street-corner drug dealers will be compared to 'The Wire'. This one falls far short

Ofcom examines claims of bias at company used by BBC

Ofcom, the media regulator, is examining the circumstances surrounding the screening of programmes on Malaysia made by a London-based company allocated millions of pounds by that country to work on a global strategic communications campaign.

Virgin says bye to Dave with UKTV sell-off

Virgin Media has sold off its stake in UKTV, whose channels include Watch, Gold and Dave, following more than a year of speculation. The move marks the end of almost 15 years of the company owning television content.

Strike disrupts programming, but BBC sticks to redundancies

The BBC has refused to rule out compulsory redundancies in the face of "significant" government cuts, despite a second strike by thousands of the corporation's journalists yesterday protesting over job losses.

Album: Punkt, Crime Scenes (Jazzland)

Composers / programmers / producers Erik Honore and Jan Bang, who assisted Arve Henriksen on the superb Cartography, plough a similar furrow for Crime Scenes.

Olympic legacy pledge 'cannot be met'

The London Olympics will not be able to fulfil its promise of helping Britain's neediest young people, according to a report.

Geek Nation: How Indian Science is Taking Over the World, By Angela Saini

The average Indian teenager of my time would have sold his grandmother (with her enthusiastic consent) for a place in the fabled Indian Institute of Technology or even a medical school – and then, more often than not, left for some worthy but intellectually undemanding job in the West. Make up your own list of Indians who have had a global impact and there will be few scientists on it. Indian artists, writers and social scientists have achieved vastly more, and for a fraction of the state investment that has gone into science and technology. Has Indian science ever produced a Ravi Shankar or, for that matter, a Raj Kapoor?

BBC 'may cut overnight programming'

The BBC could cut back on its overnight programming in a bid to save money.

Rupert Cornwell: A shouting shop needs the quiet voices of truth

Out of America: Conservative blowhards have it in for the nation's public broadcasters

Radio 3 - 'Every listener won't like every editorial decision'

Independent readers have been critical of Radio 3's treatment of Mozart and Handel. Its controller, Roger Wright, answers them and outlines his plans for live broadcasts
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Independent Travel
Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
Seven Cities of Italy
Burgundy, the River Rhone & Provence
Prague, Budapest and Vienna
Lake Garda
Minoan Crete and Santorini
Prices correct as of 15 May 2015
The Silk Roads that trace civilisation: Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places

The Silk Roads that trace civilisation

Long before the West rose to power, Asian pathways were connecting peoples and places
House of Lords: Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled

The honours that shame Britain

Outcry as donors, fixers and MPs caught up in expenses scandal are ennobled
When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race

'When it comes to street harassment, we need to talk about race'

Why are black men living the stereotypes and why are we letting them get away with it?
International Tap Festival: Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic

International Tap Festival comes to the UK

Forget Fred Astaire and Ginger Rogers - this dancing is improvised, spontaneous and rhythmic
War with Isis: Is Turkey's buffer zone in Syria a matter of self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Turkey's buffer zone in Syria: self-defence – or just anti-Kurd?

Ankara accused of exacerbating racial division by allowing Turkmen minority to cross the border
Doris Lessing: Acclaimed novelist was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show

'A subversive brothel keeper and Communist'

Acclaimed novelist Doris Lessing was kept under MI5 observation for 18 years, newly released papers show
Big Blue Live: BBC's Springwatch offshoot swaps back gardens for California's Monterey Bay

BBC heads to the Californian coast

The Big Blue Live crew is preparing for the first of three episodes on Sunday night, filming from boats, planes and an aquarium studio
Austin Bidwell: The Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England with the most daring forgery the world had known

Victorian fraudster who shook the Bank of England

Conman Austin Bidwell. was a heartless cad who carried out the most daring forgery the world had known
Car hacking scandal: Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked

Car hacking scandal

Security designed to stop thieves hot-wiring almost every modern motor has been cracked
10 best placemats

Take your seat: 10 best placemats

Protect your table and dine in style with a bold new accessory
Ashes 2015: Alastair Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Cook not the only one to be caught in The Oval mindwarp

Aussie skipper Michael Clarke was lured into believing that what we witnessed at Edgbaston and Trent Bridge would continue in London, says Kevin Garside
Can Rafael Benitez get the best out of Gareth Bale at Real Madrid?

Can Benitez get the best out of Bale?

Back at the club he watched as a boy, the pressure is on Benitez to find a winning blend from Real's multiple talents. As La Liga begins, Pete Jenson asks if it will be enough to stop Barcelona
Athletics World Championships 2015: Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jessica Ennis-Hill and Katarina Johnson-Thompson heptathlon rivalry

Beijing witnesses new stage in the Jess and Kat rivalry

The last time the two British heptathletes competed, Ennis-Hill was on the way to Olympic gold and Johnson-Thompson was just a promising teenager. But a lot has happened in the following three years
Jeremy Corbyn: Joining a shrewd operator desperate for power as he visits the North East

Jeremy Corbyn interview: A shrewd operator desperate for power

His radical anti-austerity agenda has caught the imagination of the left and politically disaffected and set a staid Labour leadership election alight
Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief: Defender of ancient city's past was killed for protecting its future

Isis executes Palmyra antiquities chief

Robert Fisk on the defender of the ancient city's past who was killed for protecting its future