Showing posts from May, 2009

The book Howard Burton believes contributed to his removal from Perimeter Institute

I'd been looking forward to reading Howard Burton's book for over two years -- ever since people who knew him told me he had written it ... and that it wasn't going over well with Perimeter Institute bigwigs. Burton was the institute's first executive director -- the man picked by PI founder and principal benefactor Mike Lazaridis to turn his vision of a physics institute into reality.

It wasn't long after I heard about the book -- maybe a couple of months, I don't really remember -- that PI announced that Burton, to borrow an expression from another field, had been future endeavored* and was "seeking new challenges."

Now the book has been published and we can read the words that apparently caused so much agitation. First Principles: The Crazy Business of Doing Serious Science was released by Key Porter Books a few weeks ago. Although it's only discussed briefly in a six-page epilogue, Burton always felt the book was a significant factor in his depa…