Tom Siegfried

Tom Siegfried

Contributing Correspondent

Tom Siegfried is a contributing correspondent. He was editor in chief of Science News from 2007 to 2012, and he was the managing editor from 2014 to 2017. He is the author of the blog Context. In addition to Science News, his work has appeared in Science, Nature, Astronomy, New Scientist and Smithsonian. Previously he was the science editor of The Dallas Morning News. He is the author of four books: The Bit and the Pendulum (Wiley, 2000); Strange Matters (National Academy of Sciences’ Joseph Henry Press, 2002);  A Beautiful Math (2006, Joseph Henry Press); and The Number of the Heavens (Harvard University Press, 2019). Tom was born in Lakewood, Ohio, and grew up in nearby Avon. He earned an undergraduate degree from Texas Christian University with majors in journalism, chemistry and history, and has a master of arts with a major in journalism and a minor in physics from the University of Texas at Austin. His awards include the American Geophysical Union's Robert C. Cowen Award for Sustained Achievement in Science Journalism, the Science-in Society award from the National Association of Science Writers, the American Association for the Advancement of Science-Westinghouse Award, the American Chemical Society’s James T. Grady-James H. Stack Award for Interpreting Chemistry for the Public, and the American Institute of Physics Science Communication Award.

All Stories by Tom Siegfried

  1. A New View of Gravity

    Explaining gravity to a small child is simple: All you have to say is, what goes up must come down. OSMOSIS AND ENTROPY In osmosis, water flows across a membrane because of an entropy gradient. Something similar may explain the force of gravity. B. Rakouskas Until the kid asks why. What can you say? It’s […]

  2. Book Review: Islam, Science, and the Challenge of History by Ahmad Dallal

    A millennium ago, the Islamic world was civilization’s Science Central, the primary haven for contemplating the cosmos and discerning the natural laws governing physical existence. While the Arabo-Islamic scientists of this period have on occasion been portrayed as mere preservers and translators of ancient Greek science, they in fact engaged in extensive creative scientific activity, […]

  3. Climate

    New carbon data should produce better climate forecasts

    BLOG: More refined measurements for carbon dioxide input by plants and carbon dioxide released during respiration will help models, Science News editor in chief Tom Siegfried reports from the Euroscience Open Forum 2010 in Turin, Italy.

  4. Astronomy

    The universe according to Planck

    Science News editor in chief Tom Siegfried reports on a new image of the early cosmos from the Euroscience Open Forum meeting in Turin, Italy.

  5. Law & Disorder

    In a famous passage from his 1938 book The Realm of Truth, the Spanish-American philosopher George Santayana compared time to a flame running along a fuse. The flame’s position marked the present moment, speeding forward but never backward as the fuse disappeared behind it. “The essence of nowness,” Santayana remarked, “runs like fire along the […]

  6. Humans

    Odds Are, It’s Wrong

    Science fails to face the shortcomings of statistics.

  7. A black future

    Shortly after the first of the year (if not already), the Large Hadron Collider — the most powerful particle accelerator ever built — will smash protons together at record energies. If the Earth remains intact, doomsayers will once again have been falsified. Every time they forecast the demise of the planet, those prophets of Earthly […]

  8. Particle Physics

    Discovery of Higgs at Large Hadron Collider might not make all physicists happy

    Nobel laureate Steven Weinberg suggests many would be horrified if all the LHC discovers is its prime target, the Higgs boson. Tom Siegfried and others blog from the 47th annual New Horizons in Science meeting sponsored by the Council for the Advancement of Science Writing in Austin, Texas.

  9. Particle Physics

    Interview: Murray Gell-Mann

    The scientist who developed quark theory turns 80 today. To mark the occasion, Science News presents an extended interview with the physicist.

  10. Space

    The Status Quark

    When in the course of scientific events it becomes necessary to dissolve allegiances to established beliefs, you can expect to face a lot of flak. New scientific ideas, the German physicist Max Planck once observed, triumph not because of the power of reason, but because their opponents eventually die. It was perhaps a slight exaggeration. […]

  11. Cosmology

    Infinity

  12. Strings Link the Ultracold with the Superhot

    Shadows live in a simple world. They glide effortlessly across any sort of surface, oblivious to the higher dimension of space in which 3-D bodies move, collide and sometimes block the paths of rays of light. NEARLY “PERFECT LIQUID” | Researchers colliding gold particles at Brookhaven National Laboratory found stronger interactions among quarks and gluons […]