The Optical Society Blog

The Importance of Science Communication

Science communication plays an increasingly important role in our society, but today’s PhD students have few formal training opportunities. The Communicating Science workshop for graduate students, formally known as ComSciCon, was created to help fill this gap by teaching science communication skills to graduate students from across a wide variety of scientific disciplines in an intensive...

Added: 11 Oct 2017


Day 2: Small Eyes & Smart Minds Incubator

Yesterday during the Small Eyes & Smart Minds “Sensors & Systems” session experts discussed novel imaging techniques and hardware.  The remainder of the Incubator showcased some human-centric imaging applications and discussed processing solutions. 

Added: 06 Oct 2017


Day 1: OSA Small Eyes & Smart Minds Incubator

The Small Eyes & Smart Minds Incubator is all about new imaging techniques, the computational work that makes them possible and the exciting applications this work can engender.  The hosts of this Incubator, Rama Chellappa, University of Maryland; Francisco Imai, Apple, Inc.; and Ashok Veeraraghavan, Rice University are seeking fundamental advances and new solutions to problems that...

Added: 05 Oct 2017


Creating Thought Provoking Presentations at the 2017 Siegman School

Writing articles and giving presentations is the essence of scientific work. To make science is to communicate our findings to our peers and the public. But how do we do it in an efficient, understandable and friendly manner? This is a serious problem that a lot of scientists, young and old, struggle with. At the Siegman School on Lasers this year, in León, México, we had the opportunity to...

Added: 02 Oct 2017


Optical Interconnects in Data Centers: What’s Next?

As technology advances at an ever-increasing pace, the potential applications for optics continue to grow and fuel new discoveries. To highlight the breakthrough work being done in optics, the committee invited nine "Visionary Speakers" to share their knowledge. One of them, Marc Taubenblatt (above) of IBM Corp. sketched out some of those frameworks, particularly for data centers.

Added: 28 Sep 2017


Quantum Technology: The Business Side

One of the meeting’s three “Visionary Speakers” keynote talks on Wednesday included plenty of interesting science, but also focused on the business and political issues emerging as quantum technology drives toward real applications. The speaker was OSA Fellow Wilhelm Kaenders, the cofounder of TOPTICA Photonics AG, Germany, and he stressed that he intended to provide a...

Added: 20 Sep 2017


The Dilemmas of a “Post-fact” World

Given what seems an ever more polarized and uncertain political environment, scientists increasingly grapple with the need to persuade policymakers and the public about the importance of the work that science does. In a morning session at the 2017 Frontiers in Optics meeting, Rush Holt, the CEO of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS), suggested that scientists...

Added: 20 Sep 2017


Prospecting the Coming Automotive Revolution

In his plenary talk, Jason Eichenholz, the cofounder and CTO of Luminar Technologies, USA, took audience members on a tour of the advanced lidar technologies necessary to make the autonomous-vehicle dream a reality.

Added: 20 Sep 2017


Keys to Successful Proposals for Research

Program officers and senior officials with four major funding agencies in the United States and Europe gave FiO 2017 attendees an inside look at their programs, and at some of the keys to putting in a successful proposal for optics and photonics research.

Added: 20 Sep 2017


From VR and AR to "Mixed Reality"

Right now, virtual reality (VR) and augmented reality (AR) largely occupy different domains: VR seeks to immerse users in an entirely separate world, while AR overlays additional data, images and experiences onto the real one. But Scott McEldowney of Oculus Research, USA, sees a future in which those strands will come together. Devices almost as lightweight as an ordinary pair of eyeglasses...

Added: 20 Sep 2017