Indra’s Net Theater — which produces plays specializing in science and philosophy — presents QED, inspired by the life of Nobel Prize-winner Richard Feynman. Feynman had an extraordinary life, starting with the Manhattan Project in his early twenties, to a brilliant career as one of the 20th century’s most original thinkers and most inspiring teachers, to serving on the panel investigating the Space Shuttle Challenger disaster at the end of his life. The production takes place at the Berkeley City Club (2315 Durant Ave., Berkeley) through Dec. 22. More>
Posts Tagged ‘World of Science’
[SF Gate] Look alive, selfie. There’s another word of the year that’s not all about you. While Oxford University Press, the British publisher of the Oxford dictionaries, declared those little smartphone self-portraits its winner last month, the folks at Merriam-Webster announced “science” on Tuesday. Oxford tracked a huge jump in overall usage of selfie, but Merriam-Webster stuck primarily to look-ups on its website, recording a 176 percent increase for science when compared with last year. More>
The Royal Swedish Academy of Sciences has awarded the 2013 Nobel Prize in physics to Peter Higgs, 84, of the University of Edinburgh in Scotland, and François Englert, 80, of the University Libre de Bruxelles in Belgium, for their work in the development in the 1960s of the theory behind what is now known as the Higgs field, the energy responsible for the mass of elementary particles. U.S. scientists, including researchers from Berkeley Lab, played a significant role in advancing the theory and in discovering the Higgs boson, the particle that proves the existence of the Higgs field. A news release on the U.S. contribution can be read here. The video above also looks at the U.S. contribution to the Higgs boson discovery.
Former Secretary of Energy and director of Berkeley Lab Steve Chu was a participant in the 2013 Nobel Laureate Meeting in Lindau, which took place this past summer. Since 1951, Nobel laureates and select groups of young scientists have been meeting in Lindau, an island in Germany, to discuss big ideas for scientific research. At this year’s meeting, Chu and fellow Nobelist Hartmut Michel discussed the future of biofuels and artificial photosynthesis. Our former director provided an economic and political reality check for the young researchers.
A recent Gizmodo.com story looked at “14 Immense Scientific Instruments You Won’t Believe are Real,” featuring several projects affiliated with Berkeley Lab. Lab photographer Roy Kaltschmidt has spent much time recording these projects and his photographs prominently accompany stories on the Daya Bay Neutrino Experiment, the Sudbury Neutrino Observatory, and the Gammasphere. More>
Albert Einstein’s assertion that there’s an ultimate speed limit – the speed of light – has withstood countless tests over the past 100 years, but that didn’t stop University of California, Berkeley, postdoc Michael Hohensee and graduate student Nathan Leefer from checking whether some particles break this law. The team’s first attempt to test this fundamental tenet of the special theory of relativity demonstrated once again that Einstein was right, but Leefer and Hohensee are improving the experiment to push the theory’s limits even farther – and perhaps turn up a discrepancy that could help physicists fix holes in today’s main theories of the universe. More>
On June 22, a 50-foot-wide electromagnet ring departed Brookhaven National Lab in New York to make a sea-and-land journey to Fermilab in Illinois. After traveling 3,200 miles down the Atlantic coast, along the Gulf coast and up a series of rivers, it finally arrived at Lemont Port on Saturday, July 20. It then began the first of three night journeys through the Chicago suburbs, traveling between 11 p.m. and 5 a.m. to minimize traffic disruption. At 4:09 a.m. on Friday, July 26, the ring arrived at the Fermilab site. More>
The Department of Energy has nurtured hubs of innovation in the United States for more than eight decades. Discoveries made at national laboratories have saved lives, solved mysteries of nature, improved products, transformed industries and served as a training ground for students who go on to pursue careers in science and technology. Use symmetry’s interactive map to learn more about what goes on at the national laboratories, or print the map in poster form to hang on your wall — or bring along on a cross-country national laboratory road trip. Access the map here.
[Scientific American] Scientists, here’s the bottom line. If you don’t convince the public that your science matters, your funding will quickly vanish and so will your field. The era of outreach being optional for scientists is now over. Non-mandatory items in the federal budget, from new aircraft carriers to food inspections to the National Science Foundation, are facing an ever-more dire squeeze. As a consequence, every program needs to fight like crazy to defend its place in the budget – or find itself out of the budget altogether. A key part of this budget defense is making the case directly to the American people about why they should care about your program. More>
The White House is kicking off “We the Geeks,” a new series of Google+ Hangouts to highlight the future of science, technology, and innovation here in the United States. Topics such as commercial space exploration, science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education, turning science fiction to science fact, and others will be discussed with Administration officials and key private sector contributors. Go here to participate in the hangout, or join the conversation on Twitter with the hashtag #WeTheGeeks.