Science@Berkeley Lab Magazine banner Berkeley Lab logo
January, 2007
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A Vision of the Future

At times multidisciplinary science can seem like too much of a good thing, at least when you're trying to keep up with what goes on at a place like Berkeley Lab. Case in point: a surfeit of science stories put a kink in production and turned what was to have been a year-end edition of Science@Berkeley Lab into a New Year edition instead.

From comet particles to cancer genomes, from free electron lasers to zigzag spintronics, from modeling pollutants to evolving bacteria, and a choice of strategies for energy efficiency ... is there a common theme here?

Variety itself is the theme. Watching the lunch crowd get off the Lab's shuttle bus from downtown Berkeley and the UC campus, one sees men and women of all ages from 19 to 90, a cheerful crowd in a palette of colors, speaking a fusion of accents. Besides smarts, what these people have in common — as demonstrated by the range of disciplines they pursue — is a passion to find out how the world works. And maybe to put it right.

There's a way to go, even here. Diversity of race and gender isn't yet what it should be. But in the polyglot crowd at the bus stop, one has a hint of what the New Year, and the years that follow this one, could bring to the world at large: the people of Earth working together to fulfill a brighter destiny.

If you have questions and comments about any of the stories in this issue of Science@Berkeley Lab, let us know by dropping us an email.

Paul Preuss, Editor, Science@Berkeley Lab