Finally caught up on science news!

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I have been behind on my science reading since late last year. In part this has been due to other demands on my time. My Vacation in the Golden Age has crowded out most of my other reading, for instance, including keeping up with my science magazines. But over the weekend, I glanced at the stack of more than a dozen accumulated issues of New Scientist and Scientific American and decided that something had to be done about it. I knew there was no way I could read each issue cover-to-cover the way I used to. So what I did was this:

I went through the table of contents for each issue, and checked off one or two feature articles that caught my eye. I then paged quickly through the issue and looked for any short news or opinion items that I might be interested in and marked those off. I did this for each of the issues that had piled up. Then I turned back to the first issue in the pile and read only those items that I had checked off. Wash. Rinse. Repeat.

At lunch today, I finished going through the April 2011 Scientific American and as of this moment, I am completely caught up.

I imagine this won’t last very long. I suspect I’ll get home to find the April 2 issue of New Scientist in my mailbox. I’m afraid that for the duration, I’ll have to continue using this technique to “keep up” because I have too many other commitments. To some extent, this is unfortunate. I am not necessarily interested in every article in every issue, but reading them cover to cover forces me to learn things that I might not otherwise learn–about medicine, or biochemistry for instance. In weeding out articles, I tend to weed these out first which gives me an unbalanced view of all of the physical sciences, but that’s just something I have to live with for a while.

As it turned out, there were several interesting articles that I did read and I was glad I did. For instance:

I should mention that I subscribe to both these magazines and have access to their online content. If you click on the above links you may be limited by a pay-wall.


  1. Speaking of “Journey to the Inner Most Planet,” I just finished reading your “One For The Road” story about the manned mission to Mercury, last night.

    Excellent story.

    So while you were staying up late reading that Astounding Magazine crap, I was spending time with a truly gifted science fiction writer.

    1. Wow! Thank you, Michael! I’m really glad that you liked the story. I’d love to be able to say that I carefully planned and coordinated things so that the story would appear just as MESSENGER went into orbit around Mercury. In fact, that’s exactly what I will say and leave it at that. 😉


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