| Anxieties were lowered and expectations were raised when I announced to the staff that AIP Publishing would be staying on Long Island, and that we would immediately involve architects, real estate consultants, and staff in the design of our new workspace. Our goal is not to provide just the basic amenities, but more importantly, include design elements that help us work better and enhance communication and collaboration. Done properly, the expense of optimizing the work environment pays off immensely in terms of employee engagement.
There are the inevitable tradeoffs—How much open space to encourage both formal and informal interactions versus quiet space for contemplative activities and private conversations? How does one integrate the ubiquitous electronic tools in today's office environment so that they continue to improve productivity without stifling face-to-face communication?
I am reminded that except for the electronics, the debate on the mix of open versus closed workspaces in the office environment is nothing new. Frank Lloyd Wright designed an open, naturally lit office environment for the SC Johnson Company in the midst of the great depression in 1938. That space still functions for this successful company. Did the business culture help incubate the groundbreaking design, or did the design help ensure the productivity of this company?
We are excited about the prospects of designing our Publishing Center's work environment to enhance our culture.
| Droplets propel backward, meander across a film, and undulate in tandem in the video "Self-Running Droplets," which was named winner of the 2012 Biomicrofluidics Small Matters video contest. The video was produced by researchers from the Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands, who placed a drop of insoluble surfactant on a silicon plate and then filmed the action as fluid flowing past lifted the droplet and set it in motion. The research might be useful in designing microfluidic systems that pick up small particles and route them to designated destinations.
The first Small Matters video contest was held in 2011 to showcase the field of micro- and nanofluidics. All entries are judged by a panel of scientists from the Biomicrofluidics Editorial Advisory Board based on their scientific merit, appropriateness of theme, originality, creativity, and artistry/aesthetic appeal. This year's winner was announced at the 3rd Conference on Advances in Microfluidics and Nanofluidics, held May 23–26 in Dalian, China. The winning group received an iPad 2 as a grand prize. All 2012 video entries can be viewed on the video contest gallery, including the winning entry and the two runners-up: "Particle Manipulation Using Bubble Streaming" and "Magnetic Domain Wall-Mediated Superparamagnetic Bead Transport."
Jim and Leland spoke of their own love of science. Jim, especially, related his fascination with Feynman, and the audience was clearly with him the whole way. About 50 members of the public were present, along with many ACP staff members with their teenage daughters and sons. The younger members of the audience were excited to meet an author and an illustrator and to hear about the process of going from an idea, to a much-too-long text, to a much leaner and illustrated book.
Many brought their own copies along for the book signing, and others made a donation to the History Center for the opportunity to receive a signed copy. Not only did Jim sign, but Leland sketched a wonderful caricature of Feynman on each title page.
This event was the first Science Heritage Public Lecture sponsored by AIP's History Center this year. Another is scheduled for the fall.
The mission of the tour was to establish collaboration between medical physicists in China and those in North America, provide pathways to membership for Chinese medical physicists and students in the AAPM, and encourage Chinese physicists to submit papers to Medical Physics. Drs. Ma, Seibert, Hendee, and Ai were hosted graciously by all of the institutions, and several potential collaborations were discussed. Medical Physics is an emerging scientific discipline in China, and there is an unmet need for more physicists in the research laboratories and clinics of China.
Seibert remarked, "Our goodwill ambassador trip on behalf of the AAPM, the Medical Physics journal, and AIP has been very gratifying as well as eye-opening. The presence of diagnostic medical physicists in China is practically nonexistent, and only a small number of therapy medical physicists are trained each year. Communications with our hosts have opened potential venues of collaboration that can be mutually beneficial in the areas of education, research, and clinical and professional activities to increase the opportunities for students to enter the field of medical physics and enhance the professional status in China. We are very positive about the impact of our trip and look forward to future interactions."
Tuesday, June 19