What’s your deal, anyway?

I’m a professor in the Department of Physics and Astronomy at Union College in Schenectady, NY, and I write books about science for non-scientists. I’ve also been blogging since 2001, when I started a booklog that was hand-rolled HTML.

So why are you here, then, instead of on your own site?

I got out of the habit of writing long(-ish) form pieces about random stuff, and I miss it. I’m hoping that launching on a new platform will be a good spur to get me back in the habit. Also, I’m nothing if not trendy.

Why “Counting Atoms” as a name?

I didn’t want to re-use my original blog name, Uncertain Principles, because that had a nice long run, and is kind of done. “Counting Atoms” is a reference to a research project I used to work on, but it’s also a nice metaphor for the activity of blogging: an ongoing process, focused on minutia, that can last essentially forever.

What will you write about?

Whatever shiny thing catches my interest. Being an academic scientist, though, those things tend to originate in higher education, pop culture, or stuff around the edges of science. Inevitably some politics, but that tends to get depressing, so hopefully not too much. I’m making this up as I go, though.

Enh. Seems OK, I guess. What should I do?

Well, you could always press this big button right here:

Or not. Whatever works for you.

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Higher ed, pop culture, politics, and random shiny things


Chad Orzel

I'm a physicist, professor, blogger, and author of popular science books.