I’ve got three months to decide. I’ll be giving an invited talk at the Division of Atomic, Molecular, and Optical Physics (DAMOP) with this title, with a goal of introducing the field to students and physicists from other fields:

In recent years, DAMOP has expanded to the point where the meeting can be quite daunting for a first-time attendee. This talk will provide an introduction to some of the most exciting current areas of research in Atomic, Molecular, and Optical physics, intended to help undergraduates, beginning graduate students, or physicists from other fields attending their first DAMOP meeting orient themselves. I will introduce the terminology and important experimental and theoretical issues in subfields including (but not limited to) ultra-cold atoms, quantum information, precision measurement, ultra-fast lasers, and atomic and molecular structure and spectroscopy. I will also suggest examples of particularly interesting sessions and presentations at this year’s DAMOP.

This is an experiment, originally suggested by Arjendu, who noted that it can be hard to figure out what’s going on when you come in from another area. It’ll be kind of tricky to give a decent introduction to all the interesting stuff at this year’s meeting, but I’ve got time, and I’m open to suggestions…


  1. #1 Anonymous Coward
    March 11, 2011

    That’s a great idea. DAMOP is daunting for new students (as are most APS meetings).

    I generally try to steer my students to the invited talks just because the short talks are often quite hard to understand if you’re not familiar with the subject at hand. But now I’ll make sure to steer them towards your talk. Sensibly, it looks like you’re scheduled for the first morning.

    I do admire your bravery: suggesting which sessions/presentations/topics are “particularly interesting” is sure to offend those who aren’t mentioned, no?

  2. #2 Matt Springer
    March 14, 2011

    I won’t be there this year, but I’d have to say that AMO is probably the most photogenic branch of physics. I mean geez – lasers!

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