Friday, 27 May 94 Washington, DC
1. A "VISION FOR THE FUTURE OF HIGH-ENERGY PHYSICS" IS REVEALED.
HEPAP's "Future-Vision" subpanel, chaired by Sid Drell, delivered
its report on schedule (WN 28 Jan 94).
It calls for "constant-
level-of-effort funding plus a $50M/year bump for three years" to
support domestic programs, accelerator R&D for the next century,
and "significant participation in the LHC." Even without a bump,
the subpanel wants the US to join the LHC and make the necessary
sacrifices at home. The report argues against converting the site
of the deceased SSC into a superconducting magnet laboratory for
high-energy physics because of its isolation from accelerators.
2. PORK-BARREL DEFENSE: BROWN GETS INFORMATION WITHOUT SUBPOENA.
Last month, George Brown, House SS&T Committee chair and nemesis
of earmarkers, threatened to subpoena documents relating to pork
in DOD programs. A week ago, Speaker Foley intervened and Brown
got his documents. Among the tidbits: $72M was requested for
Materials and Electronics Technologies; the appropriators added
$193M--and earmarked every cent. No money was requested for In-
tegrated Command and Control Technology; appropriators provided
$160M anyway--and earmarked $186M, violating conservation of $.
3. TECHNOLOGY TRANSFER: ACADEMIC RESEARCH YIELDS ANTI-EMF DEVICE!
The EMX Corporation, formed in 1991 to commercialize technology
developed at Catholic University in Washington, DC, is marketing
an IBM compatible keyboard that "neutralizes the effect of EMF
emissions from your computer." The keyboard works by generating
EMF noise, which is said to block the harmful effects of coherent
fields that emanate from computers. This remarkable technology
was discovered by physicist Ted Litovitz at Catholic University's
Vitreous State Laboratory. The VSL was one of the first academic
pork projects; it's an ultramodern, 90,000-square foot R&D center
built with a $14M DOE earmark, though few vitreous state research
publications seem to come from the VS Lab. Litovitz was studying
the effect of EMF on chicken embryos and mouse cells, which are
not thought to be vitreous. But WHAT'S NEW is confident that you
will suffer no ill effects from EMF if this keyboard is used with
your computer. Or you could just hang garlic around your neck.
4. COMPETITION IS KEEN IN THE RACE TO NEUTRALIZE EFFECTS OF EMF!
The EMX device is not without competitors; Clarus Environmental
Systems is offering a simple plug-in device that is also intended
to "neutralize the negative effects of EMF emitted by computers."
Oops! The Clarus researchers find that the biologically stressful
effects of EMF are directly related to "disordered, random and
chaotic energy in EMF fields." They fix the problem by cleaning
up the noise, thus making the EMF more coherent. Clarus relies on
advice from William Tiller, former chair of Stanford's Materials
Department. Despite seemingly opposite approaches, WN assures its
readers that the Clarus and EMX devices are equally effective.