Earlier Highlights (17)

In March 2013, I gave an opening speech at the 1st ELSI International Symposium, organized by the Earth-Life Science Institute (ELSI) in Tokyo, Japan.

In February 2013, I was invited to participate in a very informal and therefore very informative workshop at CERN. There are no proceedings, but here is an earlier preview and here is an interview with me afterwards.

<- In January 2013, I attended the Origins of Life Conference at Princeton University. It provided me with a great opportunity to learn a lot about the field, and to meet many of the main players.

Also in January, I started a new series of informal lunch conversions, IPA@IAS, short for Interdisciplinary Perspectives on Abiogenesis.

In December 2012, I visited the new Earth-Life Science Institute (ELSI for short) at Tokyo Tech, funded by a grant from the World Premier International Research Center Initiative, for which I am one of the Principle Investigators; see also a short summary.

<- In October 2012, our B612 foundation's project Sentinel was official declared technically sound and on track for a 2017 launch, according to an independent review panel.

In September 2012, I visited the new Origins of Life Initiative at Harvard University, where I enjoyed many fascinating discussions in the broadly interdisciplinary atmosphere that they have established, with contributions from astronomers, chemists, geologists, biologists, mathematicians, and others.

<- In August 2012, Ataru Tanikawa, Douglas Heggie, Jun Makino and I finished the first in-depth "microscopic" analysis of the complete history of the formation of the first hard binary in core collapse of a dense star cluster.

Also in August, I co-organized MODEST-12 in Kobe, Japan. The discussion topics focused mostly on multi-scale multi-physics simulations of dense stellar systems on the first two days, followed by observations of such systems on the third day.

<- In June 2012, I visited Kei Hirose at Tokyo Tech. He is the first scientist who has been able to reproduce the physical conditions in the center of the Earth in a laboratory.

Also in June, the B612 foundation which I co-founded ten years ago, publicly announced our new Project Sentinel, as the first privately funded deep space mission, an exciting new development.

In May 2012, I visited Dan Zahavi, professor in philosophy at the University of Copenhagen, Denmark. We decided to start writing essays in dialogue form about three ways of looking at the world: the every-day way in which the world is just given; the scientific way in which the world is given as a composition of atoms and molecules; and the phenomenological way in which the world as we know it is construsted out of phenomena.