Luhman 16B is the nearest brown dwarf to Earth, and the third nearest star system to our solar system

Pressure carries over to this year's Edinburgh Festival for Ella Hickson

In 2008 Ella Hickson burst on to the Edinburgh Festival scene with Eight, a play she wrote and directed at the tail end of her final year studying at Edinburgh University. Debuting in the perhaps less-than-fashionable venue of the University's own Bedlam Theatre, this series of monologues would go on to win a Fringe First and enjoy successful transfers to New York and London. Hickson's age at the time, 23, surely helped convince people they had a singular talent on their hands.

Student finance: find an account that works for you

Don’t be swayed by freebies, go for a bank that offers the best overdraft deal

Alexander McCall Smith: The No1 novelist's guide to Edinburgh

Alexander McCall Smith is a one-man literary industry. He has sold 40 million books, travels obsessively and churns out four or five new novels a year. But what he really likes are Belgian shoes, saddleback pigs and leisurely strolls around his beloved Edinburgh neighbourhood

Parents reject 'suicide pact' claim over deaths

The parents of a student who died in a suspected suicide pact have insisted it was a "tragic accident".

Recent graduates employ new tactics to tackle the job market

With youth unemployment at record levels, young people have been hit hardest by this recession. The situation will be compounded at the end of this month when another year of school-leavers and university graduates tries to enter the labour market.

Moral Combat, By Michael Burleigh

Michael Burleigh announces a book about "the prevailing moral sentiment of entire societies and their leaderships... as well as what might be called the moral reasoning of individuals", in the moral cauldron of the Second World War. Not a military history, then, but a mentality history: "There is also the matter of moral judgement," he adds, with a touch of menace, by which he means understanding on-the-spot behaviour, as he calls it, and avoiding armchair hindsight. "Wars are not conducted according to the dessicated deliberations of a philosophy seminar full of pursed-lipped old maids," he writes, characteristically, "and the threshold of what could be countenanced evolved over time and under the pressure of circumstances as sensitivities dulled and scruples relaxed."

Breakthrough in study of motor neurone disease

Human nerve cells carrying a critical mutation linked with motor neurone disease have been created in the laboratory for the first time from the skin cells of affected patients. The breakthrough could lead to new treatments for the debilitating disease.

The Clientele, ICA, London

Dream team keep it surreal

Great Lives, Radio 4<br/>Fu Manchu in Edinburgh, Radio 4

That's the theatre for you &ndash; all socks and violence

The Regions: Scotland

Labour faces pincer of Nationalists and Conservatives

Dylan Jones: 'David Nicholls' book is the sort of thing you can't put down

It is, as they say, something of a sleeper. In the past two weeks, six people I know have said they've just finished reading One Day by David Nicholls, a novel that has been on my bedside cabinet for the past three months, and which I have just finished myself. The premise is a simple but effective one: two students – the delightful Emma and the appalling Dexter – at Edinburgh University have a post-finals fling on 15 July 1988, and the book picks up their relationship every year for the following 20 years.

Instant vintage &ndash; hoard of 70s clothing found

Thousands of unworn garments discovered in a Glasgow warehouse

English attack 'bias' at Edinburgh University

For generations, English students have flocked north to Edinburgh in search of a world-class education. Charles Darwin, the two-time Prime Minister Lord Palmerston and the novelist Bruce Chatwin were just three of the university's most celebrated Sassenach alumni.

The pill is given health all-clear

Women who have ever used the contraceptive pill are less likely to die from any cause, including all types of cancer and heart disease, one of the world's biggest studies has confirmed.

Matthew Bell: The <i>IoS</i> Diary (21/02/10

Never gives up, even in Lent
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Pompeii, Capri & the Bay of Naples
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Minoan Crete and Santorini
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Syria civil war: Meet the military commander who says his soldiers will not rest until every inch of their war torn country is free of Islamist 'terrorists'

‘We won’t stop until Syria is back to normal’

Near the front lines with Islamist-controlled towns where Assad’s troops were besieged just last month, Robert Fisk meets a commander confidently preparing his soldiers for battle
The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation may undermine Hillary's chances

The inside story of how Bill Clinton built a $2bn global foundation...

... and how it may undermine Hillary's chances in 2016
12 best olive oils

Extra-virgin, cold-press, early-harvest, ultra-premium: 12 best olive oils

Choosing an olive oil is a surprising minefield. Save yourself the hassle with our handy guide
Sepp Blatter resignation: The beginning of Fifa's long road to reform?

Does Blatter's departure mean Fifa will automatically clean up its act?

Don't bet on it, says Tom Peck
Charles Kennedy: The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

The baby of the House who grew into a Lib Dem giant

Charles Kennedy was consistently a man of the centre-left, dedicated to social justice, but was also a champion of liberty and an opponent of the nanny-state, says Baroness Williams
Syria civil war: The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of this endless conflict

The harrowing testament of a five-year-old victim of Syria's endless civil war

Sahar Qanbar lost her mother and brother as civilians and government soldiers fought side by side after being surrounded by brutal Islamist fighters. Robert Fisk visited her
The future of songwriting: How streaming is changing everything we know about making music

The future of songwriting

How streaming is changing everything we know about making music
William Shemin and Henry Johnson: Jewish and black soldiers receive World War I Medal of Honor amid claims of discrimination

Recognition at long last

Jewish and black soldiers who fought in WWI finally receive medals after claims of discrimination
Beating obesity: The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters

Beating obesity

The new pacemaker which helps over-eaters
9 best women's festival waterproofs

Ready for rain: 9 best women's festival waterproofs

These are the macs to keep your denim dry and your hair frizz-free(ish)
Cycling World Hour Record: Nervous Sir Bradley Wiggins ready for pain as he prepares to go distance

Wiggins worried

Nervous Sir Bradley ready for pain as he prepares to attempt cycling's World Hour Record
Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Liverpool close in on Milner signing

Reds baulk at Christian Benteke £32.5m release clause
On your feet! Spending at least two hours a day standing reduces the risk of heart attacks, cancer and diabetes, according to new research

On your feet!

Spending half the day standing 'reduces risk of heart attacks and cancer'
With scores of surgeries closing, what hope is there for the David Cameron's promise of 5,000 more GPs and a 24/7 NHS?

The big NHS question

Why are there so few new GPs when so many want to study medicine?
Big knickers are back: Thongs ain't what they used to be

Thongs ain't what they used to be

Big knickers are back