APS News

April 2015 (Volume 24, Number 4)

Members in the Media

“We are a story, each of us. And a story with no listener is the same as silence, as oblivion. Some stories are harder to listen to, or can't be listened to in ordinary ways, and so take a very special kind of listener. We are blessed to have Oliver as a listener, at once scribe and bard of the human condition.”
Marcelo Gleiser, Dartmouth College, on famed neurologist and author Oliver Sacks, NPR.org, February 25, 2015.

When you think about your cup of coffee, you can see that the motion can get pretty violent... Imagine the same thing but at a much larger scale … you’re going to generate forces against the walls of the container that are going to be really high every time the ship hits a wave. So the motion of the liquid inside the ship can lead to structural damage, and it can also disturb the motion of the ship itself.”
Emilie Dressaire, New York University Polytechnic School of Engineering, on understanding the fluid dynamics of coffee, Los Angeles Times, February 24, 2015.

“The fact is that Spock was a cool geek… . Scientists are not always portrayed as being very strong. Usually, they're the guy with the tape on their glasses and their pants too high. He was clearly a person who had desirable components beyond just being smart.”
Don Lincoln, Fermilab, on the passing of Leonard Nimoy, who played the character Mr. Spock on Star Trek, The New York Times, February 27, 2015.

“What I find interesting about this is you’re suddenly talking about your work in a way you’ve never talked about it before.”
Alan Alda, Stony Brook University, on scientists using improv comedy classes to learn how to better communicate their research, The New York Times, March 2, 2015.

“A goshawk kills by grabbing the prey and kneading its talons into it... .  It needs time.”
Suzanne Amador Kane, Haverford College, who studies the flight dynamics of predatory birds, The New York Times, March 2, 2015.

“We have for the first time in the long history of quantum computing an actual device, where we can test all of our ideas about error detection.”
Rami Barends, University of California, Santa Barbara, on his recent advancement in quantum computing, The New York Times, March 4, 2015.

“It is a bit off, but not insanely so.”
David Kaplan, Johns Hopkins University, on an equation in a 1998 episode of “The Simpsons” that appears to predict the Higgs boson’s mass, Los Angeles Times, March 5, 2015.

“This plan enables us to maintain this essential quality of the Institute, which provides an interactive and stimulating intellectual environment.”
Robbert Dijkgraaf, Institute for Advanced Study, on a proposed expansion for the Institute opposed by conservationists, The Chicago Tribune, March 7, 2015.

“It’s just not a business where you should ever be confident.”
Roger Johnston, Argonne National Laboratory, on the security of nuclear sites in South Africa, The Washington Post, March 14, 2015.

“It was a stretch for many people here.”
Shirley Ann Jackson, Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, on establishing a series of performances at her university that marries science and art, The New York Times, March 15, 2015.

“I am amazed at the movement … . AI has changed life in ways as dramatic as the Industrial Revolution.”
Stephen Wolfram, Wolfram Research Inc., on anti-robot protestors at Austin’s South by Southwest festival, USA Today, March 15, 2015.

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Editor: David Voss
Staff Science Writer: Michael Lucibella
Art Director and Special Publications Manager: Kerry G. Johnson
Publication Designer and Production: Nancy Bennett-Karasik

April 2015 (Volume 24, Number 4)

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Articles in this Issue
New Director of ARPA-E on Transformative Technology
Breeding a Better Robot
Manufacturing Revolution May Mean Trouble for National Security
Planning Africa’s First Synchrotron
National Academies Studies Institutional Influences on Ethics
Programmable Materials
Physicists Look at Animal Behavior
What Makes a Physicist?
NSF and Congress Seek Rapprochement
Sole Physicist in Congress Prepares to Defend Science
APS March Meeting: Know When to Fold 'em
Members in the Media
This Month in Physics History
Education Corner
International News
Washington Dispatch
The Back Page