It's time to ThinkQuantum!

Here’s my son at a little over 1 year old, learning how to “ThinkQuantum”. Needless to say it’s never too early to start learning quantum physics … thankfully it’s also never too late. The book he’s reading is one of many fantastic books by  Chris Ferrie .

Here’s my son at a little over 1 year old, learning how to “ThinkQuantum”. Needless to say it’s never too early to start learning quantum physics … thankfully it’s also never too late. The book he’s reading is one of many fantastic books by Chris Ferrie.

Welcome to a new blog, called "ThinkQuantum"!

"What's this blog all about?" you ask. Great question! To be honest I don't know what it's going to become exactly, other than it'll involve quantum physics and quantum information science (QIS) and the work that we're doing here at the Laboratory for Hybrid Quantum Systems (LHQS) at MSU. But hopefully lots of other related topics too.

I (it's Johannes by the way) had some specific motivations for starting an LHQS blog, which I'll describe below, but hopefully ThinkQuantum will take on a life of it's own beyond my initial ideas and prove to be interesting to broad range of readers. I also hope it'll be a fun collaboration and I'm excited to see what kinds of topics our local and guest bloggers1 decide to write about.

Aside from the fact that quantum physics is my all time favorite topic to think about, I got motivated to start this blog in large part because of my fantastically wonderful experiences as a an IQIM postdoc at the Institute for Quantum Information and Matter (IQIM) at Caltech. In particular the IQIM has an absolutely wonderful blog called Quantum Frontiers, which the institute uses to engage with people outside of the IQIM and highlight the groundbreaking science and terrific outreach that IQIMer's are doing everyday, among other topics. I highly recommend checking it out.

In any event, when I came to MSU in 2016 I decided that I wanted to do something similar as a way to highlighting the cool quantumy stuff we're doing at the LHQS as well as the other great work being done by the larger MSU QIS community here in the mid-West. Thankfully the NSF agreed2!

I also wanted this blog to be a place for posting on topics related to what it's like to be, or become, a scientist. As you might know, there is not a single answer to this question. There are many ways to be a scientist, or to use scientific thinking/training, in a variety of public and private jobs outside of university research labs3. In this vein we're planning on having guest bloggers, who have connection to STEM fields but who might not work directly in academia, to write posts describing their experiences. I think these experiences and perspectives are extremely important and I hope that our guest bloggers will provide a glimpse of what scientific work looks like outside of a university setting. I also hope you'll all find it interesting and fun.

Stay tuned and enjoy!

1 If you want to be a guest blogger shoot me an email and let's chat. pollanen@pa.msu.edu

2 This work was supported by the NSF (Grant No. DMR-1708331).

3 Don't get me wrong, I think university research is fantastic and important, but there are lots of other awesome scientific careers.