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Technology Transfer Is Harder Than It Looks
Technology Transfer Is Harder Than It Looks
Washington--Limited oppotunities for proprietary research, an inability to copyright and license software and institutional red tape are major obstacles in transferring technology from federal laboratories to U.S. industry according to a new report from the General Accounting Office. The report examined 10 laboratories operated by six government agencies, raging from the Air Force’s Lincoln Laboratory to the National Institutes of Health. Interviews with lab officials found that a major
Panels Take First Cuts at 1989 Budget
Panels Take First Cuts at 1989 Budget
WASHINGTON--The $3.3 billion increase in spending for science and space programs proposed by the administration for 1989 is shrinking rapidly as it begins to make its way through Congress. On March 17 the House Budget Committee sliced the request in half. But the panel’s non-binding reductions in spending authority varied greatly by agency. The National Science Foundation, for example, received $300 million of its $330 million increase, while the $400 million increase for general scienc
Role of Prominent Scientist Divides German Peace Groups
Role of Prominent Scientist Divides German Peace Groups
WASHINGTON—Leftist members of the peace movement here have challenged the commitment of renowned physicist Carl Friedrich von Weizsäcker to their cause, sparking a debate over the role of scientists in political issues. Weizsäcker, at 75 an elder statesman in the movement, was a key member of a small team of German scientists who worked unsuccessfully on controlled nuclear fission during World War II. For the past 40 years he has analyzed the dangers of nuclear war. Last fa
Society Learns From Magazine Sale
Society Learns From Magazine Sale
WASHINGTON—The pending sale of Psychology Today to the owners of American Health marks more than the end of a costly and divisive episode in the life of the American Psychological Association. APA’s experiences with the magazine, according to its new owners and several psychologists closely connected to it, offer valuable lessons to any scientific association thinking about educating the public through a commercial magazine. “We have a better chance of serving the vision of
TV Scientists Train to Put On Good Show
TV Scientists Train to Put On Good Show
BOSTON—A growing number of scientific organizations are training researchers to appear on television and the other media. The American Association for the Advancement of Science has offered TV workshops since 1986. The University of Wisconsin gave its first one last fall. “Scientists are being increasingly called upon to provide information to the media, said Carol Rogers, head of the AAAS Office of Communications. “But they don’t really know how the media operate
Irish Boost Investment In Biotech
Irish Boost Investment In Biotech
DUBLIN—The Irish government has stepped up its canipaign to strengthen biotechnology by providing more money for university research and the marketing of commercial products. The $2.4 million awards will add three universities to an existing network of three centers set up last year. In addition, a company called BioResearch Ireland has been created to seek commercial contracts with overseas companies, in particular from the United States. “What we are trying to do is to commercia
Four Obstacles to Technology Transfer
Four Obstacles to Technology Transfer
{WantNoCacheVal} Four Obstacles to Technology Transfer Washington--Limited oppotunities for proprietary research, an inability to copyright and license software and institutional red tape are major obstacles in transferring technology from federal laboratories to U.S. industry according to a new report from the General Accounting Office. The report examined 10 laboratories operated by six government agencies, raging from the Air Force’s Lincoln Laboratory to the National Institutes of H
U.S. Officials Cool To High-TC Bill
U.S. Officials Cool To High-TC Bill
LONDON—John Hamlyn’s laboratory walls at the University of Maryland are plastered with pictures of the English countryside of his youth. The 34-year-old physiologist says he would like to return there some day, “but not in the foreseeable future. ” Hamlyn received his Ph.D. in physiology from Glasgow University and planned to return to the United Kingdom after some training abroad. But during a 1981 visit home he “was appalled at the state of science” in hi
EC Hopes to Reverse Brain Drain
EC Hopes to Reverse Brain Drain
{WantNoCacheVal} EC Hopes to Reverse Brain Drain RICHARD STEVENSON LONDON—Stanford University wanted to create a program in organic geochemistry. Simon Brassell, a young research fellow at Bristol University, was looking for a better career opportunity. Unfortunately for Europe, it was a good watch: Brassell is now an associate professor of applied earth sciences and geology at Stanford. That combination of plentiful resources overseas and tight budgets at home has meant a continuing
U.S. Officials Cool To High-TC Bill
U.S. Officials Cool To High-TC Bill
RICHARD STEVENSON LONDON—Stanford University wanted to create a program in organic geochemistry. Simon Brassell, a young research fellow at Bristol University, was looking for a better career opportunity. Unfortunately for Europe, it was a good watch: Brassell is now an associate professor of applied earth sciences and geology at Stanford. That combination of plentiful resources overseas and tight budgets at home has meant a continuing brain drain of the region’s scientific
Making Contacts at Conferences
Making Contacts at Conferences
Conferences serve many purposes, both professional and social. They aim to foster efficient information exchange, offer the opportunity to investigate employment possibilities, and provide a chance for old friends to get reacquainted. With a certain regularity and for a brief time a far-flung community comes together. I am not the only one to have noticed, however, that many conferences serve younger professionals poorly. Graduate students and recent postdocs—the people who have the most
Expanding HIV's Host Range: A Response
Expanding HIV's Host Range: A Response
Editor’s note: Last November 30, we published an Opinion piece by Alexander Kohn, professor of virology at Tel Aviv University. In the article, Kohn questioned the wisdom of inserting the CD4 gene from HIV into cell lines, especially HeLa cells. Such research could, Kohn suggested, expand the host range of HIV In this response, Howard M Temin, of the McArdle Laboratory for Cancer Research, tries to lay Kohn’s concern to rest. We invite further comment. Alexander Kohn and the headl
Women Grad Students Need Encouragement, Too
Women Grad Students Need Encouragement, Too
In the annual Westinghouse Science Talent Search almost 40 years ago, the top girl and the top boy each received prizes. Although it is unclear which gender benefited most from the dual awards, the judges presumably wanted to recognize the abilities of both boys and girls. Despite the best attempts of the Talent Search and other efforts, women are still greatly underrepresented in the United States’ scientific and engineering workforce. This problem is suddenly achieving national atte
A Common Ground For rDNA Adversaries
A Common Ground For rDNA Adversaries
It’s not easy, at first sight, to discern signs of ideological harmony between biologists who are working toward the environmental dissemination of genetically altered organisms and “activists” who are deeply apprehensive about the idea. Look more closely, however, and one argument appears as a possible basis for unity: the need for far greater investment in the ecological research necessary for prudent development of this novel range of technologies. As reflected in the ag
NSF's Bloch On Funding For Science
NSF's Bloch On Funding For Science
Under Erich Bloch, who was appointed director of the National Science Foundation in 1984, the agency has broadened its activities beyond its traditional support of individual laboratories and researchers. Bloch has strengthened NSF’S engineering component and put greater emphasis on on industry university cooperation, including the establishment of research centers around the country as the focus for advanced study in areas ranging from computers to exotic materials to basic biology. He a
Desktop Utilities for Your PC
Desktop Utilities for Your PC
Editor’s note: This is the final article in a three-part series on utilities for IBM PCs or compatibles. The first part, on enhancing input! output operations, appeared Feb- ruary 8, 1987, P. 22. The second, on DOS utilities, appeared March 21, 1988, p. 14. In this final installment, I’ll consider the so-called desktop utilities, (not to be confused with the term desktop publishing). When SIDEKICK first came out in 1984, it used the desktop metaphor in an attractive way. Just as y
One of the Market's Major Contenders
One of the Market's Major Contenders
Universal Technical Systems, Inc. 1220 Rock Street Rockford, IL 61101-1437 (813) 963-2220 Price: $395. Student version: $44.95 (sold through McGraw-Hill). Requirements: IBM PC/XT/AT or compatible. 512 K RAM. Dual floppy/ hard disk. DOS 2.0 or later. TK!Solver, the oldest equation solver, hit the market in 1984. It had a brief moment of glory as the first of its kind, but, burdened with a difficult and confusing user interface, it never achieved widespread use. Universal Technical Systems sa
Problem-Solving Software
Problem-Solving Software
Holy trinity of software. beware! Move over spreadsheet data base handler and word processor. Make room for the equation solver, the simulation/prediction program for those who live by the numbers. What is an equation solver? Basically, it's: a software package that will do complex mathematical computations without being programmed by the user. Most solvers are more than just souped-up calculators. In addition to built-in trig functions, step functions, math routines, etc., they can plot cal
Colorful But Less Scholarly
Colorful But Less Scholarly
Borland International 4585 Scotts Valley Drive Scotts Valley, CA 95066 (408) 438-5300 Price: $167. Student version: $39.95. Requirements: IBM PC/XT/AT or compatible. 384 K RAM. PC DOS or MS DOS 2.0 or later. Also available for Macintosh. Eureka was designed for the popular market. It’s easy to use, nice to look at and fun to play with. Like many of Borland’s products, its appearance is spectacular. Eureka is oriented toward business applications, but certainly has many scientific a
Powerful But Not So Flexible
Powerful But Not So Flexible
Version 1.0 Pacific Crest Software 887. NW Grant Avenue. Corvallis, OR 97330 503-754-1067 Price: $295.. Sold to students and faculty on an individual basis for $75. Requirements: IBM PC/XT/AT or compatible. 256 K RAM. DOS 2.0 or higher. The name of this package comes from the vendor’s description of the product’s main features under five headings: (1) a programmable calculator with built-in functions; (2) a data analysis system in which data can be sorted; analyzed, transformed an
A Good Choice For General Use
A Good Choice For General Use
Version 1.8 Analysis Technology Company 3914 Miami Road, Suite 310 Mariemont, OH 45227 (513)561-1100 Price: $149. Academic discounts available. Requirements:IBM PC/XT/AT or compatible. 512 K RAM. Minimum of 10 MB hard disc. Graphics adapter. Barely promoted outside specialist publications, IAS is a well-designed math, science and engineering tool. The interface consists of menus and submenus that stack and are visible simultaneously. Menus allow you to select basic math functions and severa
Minimum Interface, Maximum Freedom
Minimum Interface, Maximum Freedom
Version 2.0 MathSoft One Kendall Square Cambridge, MA 02139 1-800-MathCAD Price: $349. Student version: $40 (sold through Addison-Wesley). Requirements:IBM PC/XT/AT or compatible. 512 K RAM (640 K recommended). DOS 2.0 or later. Math coprocessor recommended. MathCAD has the simplest user interface of the six packages reviewed here. After booting up, you get a blank screen, except for a single “Command:” line at the top. It is a bit intimidating to the uninitiated, but the unclutte
Some Choice Words From Waksman
Some Choice Words From Waksman
Since scientists operate in small worlds populated by people with common research interests, they repeatedly encounter one another in the literature as well as at conferences. The world I inhabited as a graduate student and for some years thereafter revolved around the study of antibiotics. I earned my doctorate in the department of microbiology at Rutgers, the State University of New Jersey, where antibiotics were the focus of interest. The chairman of the department was Selman A. Waksman. He

Letter

Letters
Letters
FANSI Facts Big Mac Attack The Extreme Peta Doctors in the House The USDA and Biotech In “A Utilities Toolbox for PC-Minded Scientists” (February 8, 1988, p. 22), Barry Simon lists the old price for the registration of FANSI-CONSOLE. As of December 1, 1987, the registration price was $49.95. The price for the complete package including the printed documentation is still $75. Otherwise we found no errors of fact in the article. We do bristle at the manual being called “

Opinion

Want to Influence Policy? Get Elected!
Want to Influence Policy? Get Elected!
Wisdom is truncated by the chemistry of the adviser and advisee. The president has available an awesome armament of potential sources of science advice if he feels the need for advice. Let’s see: there's the science adviser and his apparatus in the Office of Science and Technology Policy. There is President’s Science Advisor Council or the White House Science Council equivalent (roughly). There is the National Science Foundation Director and the entire NSF with its manifold infini

Profession

For Professionals Only
For Professionals Only
Solver-Q Version 1.01 Software Development and Distribution Center The University of Wisconsin-Madison 121 0 West Dayton Street Madison, WI 53706 (608) 263-9484 or 263-9864 Price: $90. Student version: $40. Requirements: IBM PC/XT/AT or compatible: 256 K RAM. DOS 3.0 or later. Comes with a version that uses a math coprocessor and a version that does not. Solver-Q is an interesting addition to the solver market. It is more of a specialist product than the Big Three. Designed by an academic as
Interviewing for an Academic Post
Interviewing for an Academic Post
Your vita has made the right impression on the search committee, and you have now been invited to interview in an academic science department of a wellnown university. An interview is a courtship between you and the department, and in this formal two-step both are looking for a serious, lasting relationship-at least until "tenure do us part" or a better offer comes along. The typical academic interview consists of three parts: meeting people; giving a seminar; and "the dinner." The whole proces

Happenings

Happenings
Happenings
George A. (Jay) Keyworth II, nuclear physicist and chairman of the Washington, D.C.-based industrial consulting firm, the Keyworth Company, has become director of research for the Hudson Institute for public policy research, Indianapolis, Ind. From 1981 to 1985, Keyworth was Science Adviser to President Reagan. He is currently a director of the Santa Fe Institute in New Mexico and the Center for Excellence in Education in McLean, Va. He holds a Ph.D. from Duke University. Robert A. Rouse, f
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