We Can Discover the Wonders of Nature

The Best American Science Writing 2005
Alan Lightman, Guest Editor, Jesse Cohen, Series Editor

Over lunch earlier this month I floated a trial balloon past an old friend. What I’m most interested in, I asserted, is different ways of thinking. The details are a little less important, because a lot of those tend to stick and, in any case, I can always dive back in. It’s my current best explanation for the haphazard range of my reading life.

Hence the present volume,  which serves the useful purpose of bringing me back to my roots while updating Continue reading


Science: It’s Not Just About Nature

The Best American Science and Nature Writing 2008
Jerome Groopman, M.D., Guest Editor; Tim Folger, Series Editor

best am sci 08Luckily, science doesn’t come with a ‘sell by’ date. That’s a good thing because I run so perennially behind that getting to the’ 08 volume in ’14 is actually admirable.

As was the job done in helping assemble this volume. I’ve been known to refer to myself as a failed engineer, which is true. But, seemingly in penance, I gravitated towards social science and went on, eventually, to 3 semesters of graduate school math. My point Continue reading

The Great Antidote

The Best American Science Writing 2004
Dava Sobel, Editor; Jesse Cohen, Series Editor

In high school I was a certified nerd: slide rule, binder, TI some-number-or-other in hand, 90+ on all four science Regents. Science remains a fascination and the rigor I learned is important as I read the social science and business literature where it often goes wanting. So it’s a little troubling that there’s so little of it in these virtual pages.

Part of the problem is that I am, by nature, a generalist. The history of science is populated with Continue reading