JULY 1956
PEEKING INTO ATOMS--"Today the most backward schoolboy knows that atoms are real. He even knows what they look like. The picture of a little round nucleus surrounded by a cloud of electrons is practically the trademark of our time. In 1951 the author began to think about a new way of examining nuclei. The idea was to shoot very high-speed electrons at them and see how the electrons were deflected, or, as the physicist says, scattered. At Stanford University in 1951 a great linear accelerator was being built that would produce an intense beam of electrons at energies approaching a billion electron volts. The corresponding wavelength would be measured in a few fermis. This is short enough to reveal nuclear structure in considerable detail.--Robert Hofstad-ter." [Editors' note: Hofstad-ter was awarded a Nobel Prize in Physics in 1961 for this work.]

COMMUNIST CHEER--"The 14 U.S. and seven British physicists who attended last month's high-energy physics conference in Moscow were impressed by the congeniality of their hosts and the absence of secrecy. The relaxed atmosphere seemed at least partly due to political changes within the Soviet Union. Victor F. Weisskopf of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology reported that Soviet research was already benefiting from the return to universities and institutes of many scientists who had been held in labor camps. The release of prisoners, he said, has gone far to eliminate the atmosphere of fear in the Soviet Union."