Arts and Entertainment

Last month’s news that the Inchindown oil storage tanks in Scotland have entered the record books as the man-made structure with the longest echo – a resonating 112 seconds – is very largely due to the author of this book. Cox, a professor of acoustic engineering at the University of Salford, embarked on a quest to find not only the longest echo (or more correctly, reverberation) in the world, but also the noisiest, the quietest and even the most musical places around the globe.

Nasa astronaut Michael Hopkins works to repair an external cooling line on the International Space Station

Christmas Eve spacewalk repairs broken cooling system at the International Space Station

US astronauts faced a 'mini blizzard' of ammonia during a rare spacewalk

A car is submerged in the overflowing River Stour at Ilford Bridge Home Park, near Bournemouth, where flooding has caused the evacuation of residents

UK weather: Thousands face Christmas power cuts as floods dampen the festive spirit

Emergency evacuations as 130 flood warnings remain across England and Wales, with 50,000 homes still without power

Light snow covered areas of Cumbria and Northumberland earlier this week

UK weather: Bookies slash odds of white Christmas

At least one bookmaker has halved the odds of a white Christmas in just 24 hours as forecasters predict cold could turn rain to snow

Snow Sculpture Art Expo

The Great British Christmas getaway: 4m to head abroad for holidays – while the rest of us face a travel and weather nightmare

An estimated 13 million people set to take to UK's roads from 24-26 December

UK weather: Snow warnings and gusts of up to 90mph expected as Britain recovers from wind-battered night that left thousands without power

Storms caused by Atlantic depression left 7,000 customer without electricity in Northern Ireland

On the slopes in St Moritz

Postcard from... St Moritz

The words “black ice” send a shudder through the average motorist. In St Moritz, Switzerland, over the past few weeks, however, black ice has been the cause of excitement.

British teenager sees avalanche kill triplet brother during ski trip

Austrian police said a guide, who is believed to have been a skier with substantial experience in the resort, will face a criminal investigation

Stormy seas at Porthcawl: The Met Office said that winds of up to 80mph are predicted in some areas.

UK Christmas weather: Britain to be hit with gale force 80mph winds and heavy rain

It's beginning to look a lot like an unsettled Christmas 

Delta Air Lines flight slips off icy runway into snow at Wisconsin airport

None of the plane’s 60 passengers were hurt in the incident

World Cup 2014: Why Germany's beachside resort may signal a happy holiday to come

German football reflects German business. Both value stability, demonstrable competency and obedience to a set of tried and tested rules

These shepherds, with their 500-strong flock, were stuck for three days due to the heavy snowfall

Postcard from... Turkey

The coach journey from Diyarbakir to Erbil is an arduous one on the best of days. It takes around 12 hours to travel between the two Kurdish cities in Turkey and Iraq, with regular stops for tea and a lengthy wait on the border.

Kim Jong-un visited a fisheries station and a ski resort in recent days

Execution of Kim Jong-un’s uncle Jang Song-thaek raises fears in South

Five of the seven officials who walked alongside Kim Jong-il’s hearse in December 2011 have been killed, purged or sent to labour camps

A photograph supplied bu the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) shows Arctic sea ice in 2013
This feel good video has captured winter fun as the Middle East is hit with rare snowfall

‘Why we don't have snow in Saudi Arabia’: Video captures winter fun as Middle East hit with rare blizzard

While the snow has caused major disruption for many, a pair of Saudi’s have come up with a novel way of enjoying the weather

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Hell, yeah: members of the 369th Infantry arrive back in New York
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Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness