• The Pulsator: How a Portable Artificial Respirator Saved the Lives of Children

      “It is so refreshing these war-threatened days to find a scientist and an engineer using their great gifts to help humanity rather than to devise means to destroy life and property.” -Letter from Dr. C.J. McSweeny to Sir William Bragg, 27 June 1938.   The S.O.S. call rang through the BBC airwaves the evening… Continue Reading

  • Elephant Clocks & Sultans of Science

    “How many centuries did the Islamic Golden Age last?” a student asked me, thrusting his worksheet in front of me, anxious for me to answer his question. “6, 8, 9, or 10?” “Uh…9? No. . Wait…” I answered, flustered because I can’t calculate in my head—I knew it lasted from the 8th to 13th centuries,… Continue Reading