What’s In A Name? For Chemists, Their Field’s Soul
Aug03

What’s In A Name? For Chemists, Their Field’s Soul

This post was originally published at Scientific American’s Guest Blog. Don’t forget to check out all the contributions to the Scientific American Blog Network’s Chemistry Day! By 1992, the Soviet Union was formally dissolved, and the entire world’s political, economic, and military alliances were in the throes of transformation. But you could forgive officials at the International Union of Pure and Applied...

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CENtral Science Represents at Scientific American Blogs’ Chemistry Day

Devoted CENtral Science followers may recall two posts about a big development in the blogosphere that went up at Terra Sigillata last month. There, my esteemed blog colleague David Kroll played host to a vibrant discussion about the shiny new Scientific American blog network– of course congratulating the massive effort on the part of Chief Editor and Community Manager Bora Zivkovic and many others that led to its creation, but...

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The Guy With The Namesake Ligand: Brett Fors
Jun08

The Guy With The Namesake Ligand: Brett Fors

To troll the nightly poster sessions at the National Organic Symposium is to combine stargazing with a high school reunion. Nobel laureates rub elbows with undergraduates presenting their work. Graduate school labmates who haven’t seen each other in years catch up. And a spread of food, wine, and beer fuels attendees through the midnight hour. It was here that I ran into Brett P. Fors, who just obtained his Ph.D. from Stephen...

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In Search Of Mizoroki And Heck
May18

In Search Of Mizoroki And Heck

Folks who read my story on named reactions this week might wonder why I chose to highlight the Heck reaction, or Mizoroki-Heck reaction. Sure, it’s one of the most well-known reactions in organic chemistry, but how’d I narrow it down? Well, the answer is that I didn’t narrow anything down. Reading the phrase “Mizoroki-Heck reaction” was what got me interested in the topic of named reactions in the first...

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Named Reactions’ Biggest Fan
May17

Named Reactions’ Biggest Fan

Jie Jack Li is an unabashed chemistry fanboy. The author of several books on chemistry topics, he is perhaps most famous for being the author of several editions of ”Name Reactions”, a popular reference book for organic chemists. I interviewed Jack for my story this week on named reactions, and during our interview he revealed a fascinating factoid. “Whenever I meet a person who has a reaction named after them, I take a picture with...

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