It is a pleasure to start my term as the Editor of the newsletter with this issue. Since 1973, my predecessors have consistently created the highest quality content and it is an honor to hold myself to their standards. I would like to particularly thank Cameron Reed for the tremendous job he has done the past years and for helping to make my transition so smooth.
When I first joined the Forum Executive Committee in 2001 as Secretary/Treasurer, one of the first significant tasks we had to address was how best to transform the newsletter from print-only versions to fully electronic. The cost of printing and mailing the newsletter four times per year was steadily increasing and it was clear that continuing in this manner was not sustainable. Much of our discussion centered upon how going electronic would affect our readership, both for our membership that preferred to read a paper copy and to the hundreds of libraries and academic departments that left copies of the newsletter in public spaces for anyone to read. This discussion was before the prevalence of electronic delivery that we take for granted today and we went slowly, printing two issues instead of four at “first” before eventually going to fully electronic. The question of readership remains, however, and one of my goals as Editor is to increase the ability for those that are not FPS members to find and read our newsletter. The popularity of social media outlets and other methods of electronic delivery are currently an untapped resource and I would like to explore how best to utilize these to the benefit of the Forum. If you are interested in helping with this, please email me. The more people involved, the better!
Speaking of volunteering, our Editorial Board has an open slot. I would like to express my sincere gratitude to the two current members of the board, Maury Goodman and Richard Wiener, along with my Assistant Editor, Laura Berzak Hopkins, for their assistance in putting this issue together. That included finding authors, reviewing submissions, and offering sound advice. If you are interested in serving on the board, please contact me.
This issue is primarily focused on the FPS-sponsored sessions at the March and April APS meetings. Micah Lowenthal chaired a session titled “Science in the New Administration” and wrote a summary for the newsletter while Pushpa Bhat did the same for the sessions she chaired on “American Science & America’s Future.” In addition, each of the speakers from the session on “Physicists as Science Advisors” was kind enough to contribute an essay on their personal experiences. Finally, M. V. Ramana has written a fascinating article on “The Limited Future of Nuclear Power in India.” As always, our Books Editor Art Hobson has added reviews of books that should be of interest to all.
Our next issue will be published in October and I plan to focus on how physics has contributed to the social sciences. If you would like to contribute to this issue or have a suggestion for an author, please send me an email.
These contributions have not been peer-refereed. They represent solely the view(s) of the author(s) and not necessarily the view of APS.