My 2 new books

I've finally published a new book, two actually. The first is a whimsical myth of the discovery of buckyballs. I wrote this 20 years ago for my bucky friends and a few weeks ago realized I should publish it for posterity.

The next is a singularity story of the oldest star in the universe. Guess where it is......only 190 light years away from us. What are the odds that the oldest star in the universe is so close to us? By the way, it's actually older than the universe.

Enjoy !

For those reading my books you'll be interested in the cover. Each cover is directly related to the contents. Unlike most you can judge my books by the cover!

Ahmed Zewail 1946-2016

Ahmed Zewail was a brilliant physical chemist and a tremendous inspiration to me. I first met him in April 1984 when I was a graduating senior at Illinois. He is probably the first person I ever heard who used the word "picosecond". For several years I wanted to be a postdoc with him but in the end it didn't work out.

Thank you Dr. Zewail for picoseconds and femtoseconds and for inspiring a whole generation of physical chemists. My deepest condolences to all his family and colleagues.


MyDataTags were made by the Nuventec corporation. We created a metal microtag capable of withstanding high temperature. On this tag we laser etched a serial number identifying the owner of the tag and a website:

The idea of microdot technology is that they are almost invisible and thieves cannot see them. Even if a thief knows there are microdots on a valuable piece of property, the thief doesn't know how many tags to look for and remove. If he misses even a single tag the police can prove it is stolen property. So in theory a dumb thief will steal tagged property and end up in jail, while a smart thief will avoid touching any tagged property.

Unfortunately there was no market for microdot technology in the USA. Other countries such as South Africa and Australia have a fluorishing industry in plastic microdots but we found very little interest in the US. Both the product and the corporation are now defunct.

If you want to write tiny letters on a tiny tag contact me and we can look into a mutual venture.

If you like my writing on this blog you may enjoy some or all of my books.

Goodbye my friend

I shall miss you with all my heart. You smiled when you were happy, you smiled when you were angry, you smiled when you were tired, you smiled when you were everywhere.

You were there with me when Challenger exploded, when I was frustrated and lonely, when I could not care less about carbon, when I was successful and enthusiastic about buckyballs. You told me my career had peaked when I was 23 years old.  I think you were right.

Harry Kroto was one of the greatest scientists in history because he understood joy and connected it to science better than anyone I have ever met.  He laughed and smiled at all things science.

It is with the utmost respect that I must sadly report that Harry has gone to meet his maker (or maybe not), he is pushing up daisies, he has joined the choir invisible.  Sir Harold Walter Kroto, FRS is an ex-chemist.


A Journal for Science Fiction

There is a new journal dedicated to Science Fiction from the Museum of Science Fiction

Volume 1 Issue #1 is now available.   Here is their Focus and Scope

MOSF Journal of Science Fiction seeks to uphold the spirit of educated inquiry and speculation through the publication of peer-reviewed, academic articles, essays and book reviews exploring the interdisciplinary nature of science fiction. The journal welcomes unsolicited, original submissions from academics around the world about science fiction in all media (literature, film, television, videogames, art, oral history, etc.). Issues are published three times a year and each issue will feature 8 to 12 academic articles.


The best Go player in the world


The best Go player in the world is now a machine named Deepmind.

Go was the last refuge of human game playing, it was far too complex for a machine to master.  But now a machine can beat the best Go champion in the world Lee Se-dol.

The next step in this saga is a general purpose game playing machine which can beat human champions at chess and go and all other games of strategy and luck.  It will be interesting to see how soon a machine can win a poker tournament.  That will require facial recognition and human behavior analysis.

I would like to welcome DeepMind to this blog along with all the other machine intelligences which are surfing the Internet.  I for one salute our new machine overlords.