The Moment of Discovery — Image & Reality


The moment of knowledge, or the point of a new idea's creation, is almost impossible to record unless someone is wired with electrodes to track brain patterns. That is today.

When studying the creative process involved in historical scientific discoveries, historians of science, like Case Western Reserve University's Alan Rocke, need to employ methods of more distant inference—the very same principle that German chemist August Kekulé experienced to imagine and detail the architectural structure of chemical molecules. In the process, Kekulé changed the field of chemistry, and all of science.

Rocke selected Kekulé as the subject of his new book, Image & Reality: Kekulé, Kopp, and the Scientific Imagination, to discuss the value of the creative process in scientific discovery and how some discoveries come about far from the lab. Read more.

Campus News

The Summer Program in Undergraduate Research (SPUR) is presenting a workshop, "Principles, Consequences, and Character: Ethics for Undergraduate Researchers," led by Shannon French, Inamori Professor of Ethics and director of the Inamori International Center for Ethics and Excellence. The workshop, co-sponsored by the Department of Biology and the Inamori Center, is from 10 a.m. to 3 p.m., Thursday, July 15, in Crawford Hall, ground level. The workshop is limited to 100 people. Lunch is being served. The program is being funded in part by the Howard Hughes Medical Institute. Contact Julia Brown-Allen at 368-3556 for additional information and to RSVP.

The summer barbecue season continues Wednesday, June 23, with a Mediterranean menu and music by Kristine Jackson. There will be different menus and musical styles from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. on the quad every Wednesday through July 7. The events are open to the public. Each barbecue event costs $7.75 per person (including a beverage), or $35 for a book of five tickets. Go online for more information.

For Faculty and Staff

iGoogle, the popular customizable Start Page by Google, will be available through Launchpad beginning June 28. iGoogle replaces Webstart to allow users a richer experience, integration of more gadgets, such as Gmail, as well as customizable themes for a more personal feel. Customizations that users have made to Webstart will transition to iGoogle and existing bookmarks to the site will continue to function.

The Case Western Reserve University Employee Wellness program is presenting two free programs for all faculty and staff. Bon Appétit is hosting a Summer Barbecue cooking demonstration on Friday, June 25, and Roy Buchinsky is leading a discussion on men's health (women are encouraged to attend as well as men) on Wednesday, June 30. Both sessions are from noon to 1 p.m. in Nord Hall 310. For more information on the CWRU Wellness Program visit the program's website. Registration is required.


The Mandel Center for Nonprofit Organizations will host an open house from 5:30 to 7 p.m., Thursday, June 24, at the Mandel Center. Employees can take advantage of the university's tuition waiver benefit for the master's degree and can learn about financial assistance for Case Western Reserve employees interested in obtaining the center's certificate. Refreshments will be served. Register online.

The Staff Advisory Council (SAC) presents 20 Years of Building Bridges, a history of SAC. The event takes place at the Frances Payne Bolton School of Nursing in Lecture Hall NOA31A on the ground floor. Three continuous showings are at noon, 12:30 p.m. and 1 p.m. on Wednesday, June 23.

The views and opinions of those invited to speak on campus do not necessarily reflect the views of the university administration or any other segment of the university community.

Et al.

Noah Swartz made it to the semi-finals at Pro Tour: San Juan playing the popular Magic: The Gathering trading card game. Swartz is a student and member of the university's Magic: The Gathering club.

June 21, 2010

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In the News

Where Gulf spill might place on the roll of disasters

New York Times June 18, 2010
President Obama has called the oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico "the worst environmental disaster America has ever faced." Senior people in the government have echoed that language for other disasters. "The Dust Bowl is arguably one of the worst ecological blunders in world history," comments Ted Steinberg, a historian at Case Western Reserve University.

Most heart patients skimp on exercise after rehab

BusinessWeek June 19, 2010
Only about one-third of cardiac patients were doing regular heart-healthy exercises a year after a heart attack, bypass surgery or angioplasty, researchers have found. The Case Western Reserve University research team followed 248 patients after they completed a 12-week cardio rehabilitation program to help train them to exercise. Exercise patterns in the longitudinal study were tracked through heart monitors worn by the patients. After one year, only 37 percent of the patients were exercising even three times a week, the investigators found. Mary Dolansky, an assistant professor of nursing, is the lead researcher.

Gay icons of Hollywood move out in the open

Plain Dealer June 18, 2010
Somewhere over the rainbow, Judy Garland became a gay icon. Where and when exactly, only the Wizard knows. "For decades, gay people couldn't go public with who they were, so they had to develop a secret language," says Louis Giannetti, author of Understanding Movies and film professor emeritus at Case Western Reserve University.

The surprising toll of sleep deprivation

News Week June 18, 2010
Adults typically need seven to nine hours of sleep each night to feel fully rested and function at their best. However, Americans are getting less sleep than they did in the past. A recent review by a team from Case Western Reserve University and Harvard Medical School found that all of the large studies that followed people over time agreed that short sleep duration was associated with future weight gain.

Higher Ed News

Adjuncts and retention rates June 21, 2010
Freshmen who have many of their courses taught by adjuncts are less likely than other students to return as sophomores, according to a new study looking at six four-year colleges and universities in a state system. Further, the nature of the impact of adjunct instruction varies by institution type and the type of adjunct used, the study finds. And in some cases, students taking courses from full-time, non-tenure track instructors or from adjuncts well supported by their institutions do better than those taught by other kinds of adjuncts.