My Week in Waterloo

I spent the last few days in Ontario, attending the Convergence meeting at the Perimeter Institute. This brought a bunch of Perimeter alumni and other big names together for a series of talks and discussions about the current state and future course of physics. My role at this was basically to impersonate a journalist, and […]

The Making of “Squeezed States in a Bose-Einstein Condensate”

Yesterday’s write-up of my Science paper ended with a vague promise to deal some inside information about the experiment. So, here are some anecdotes that you would need to have been at Yale in 1999-2000 to pick up. We’ll stick with the Q&A format for this, because why not? Why don’t we start with some […]

Murphy Violation in Science

Over at Unqualified Offerings, Thoreau proposes an an experimental test of Murphy’s Law using the lottery. While amusing, it’s ultimately flawed– Murphy’s Law is something of the form: Anything that can go wrong, will. Accordingly, it can only properly be applied to situations in which there is a reasonable expectation of success, unless something goes […]

My Doomsday Weapon

In the time that I’ve been at Union, I have suffered a number of lab disasters. I’ve had lasers killed in freak power outages. I’ve had lasers die because of odd electrical issues. My lab has flooded not once, not twice, but three different times. I’ve had equipment damaged by idiot contractors, and I’ve had […]