As promised, here’s the link to part 2 of my two-part series of posts at Cambridge University Press on the 60th anniversary of the laser! This post features a discussion of the basic ideas of how a laser works, like stimulated emission that can create an “avalanche” of photons:
Please give it a read! You can read part 1 here.
On May 16, 1960, Theodore Maiman of Hughes Research Laboratories was the first person to create the now ubiquitous and important source of light that we know as the LASER – Light Amplification by Stimulated Emission of Radiation. This year marks the 60 year anniversary of this achievement, and for this occasion I wrote a blog post for Cambridge University Press on the history of the laser!
Please check it out over at the CUP blog! This is part 1 of 2, and part 2, which describes a bit about how a laser works, will appear at the CUP blog later this week. I will of course post a link to that article, as well.
A photograph of laser speckle, just to give the post a little visual!
So this year is the 60 year anniversary of the invention of the laser, which was finally accomplished by Theodore Maiman on May 16, 1960 (mark your calendar!). I recently wrote a blog post about the physics and history of the laser to commemorate the occasion; I will share a link to it when it appears.
But one thing I came across while working on the post? The first newspaper article announcing the discovery! The article, written by Ralph Dighton for the Associated Press, was syndicated and appeared across the country around October 16, 1960. Of course, coming from such an important source of news, I’m sure it was a very subdued and unsensational take on the disc… oh, no.
I thought I should write a short post sharing some of the most lurid highlights from the article, which really made me chuckle.
Okay, here’s one more classic video from my regular seminar series: Forgotten Milestones in the History of Optics! This was one of the earliest semi-popular seminars I put together.
More videos and posts to come!
Continuing my series of uploaded videos, tonight I recorded a version of my How Not To Be Seen: The history and science of invisibility seminar, which I’ve given and revised for probably close to ten years now! I’ve shared links to versions before, but this is the most recent and up-to-date version, based on a lecture I gave at the University of Chicago last fall.
I was feeling a little scatterbrained during the recording, so I fumbled my speaking a couple of times; I hope it isn’t too distracting!
More videos to come! It looks like I’ll be home for quite a while, so there’s lots of science to be shared! As I’ve noted before, my next videos will be significantly shorter.