Cover Story

Medieval Islamic Achievement in Optics

David C. Lindberg

Scholars in medieval Islam held optical knowledge superior to that of any other culture of the time. more>>

Features

In Search of a New Start

Kim Douglass

Jobs in telecom may be scarce, but some optics professionals are finding creative ways to try to turn their careers around. more>>


Bananas, Explosives and the Future of Cavity Ring-Down Spectroscopy

Bernard G. Fidric, Robert A. Provencal, Sze M. Tan, Eric R. Crosson, Alexander A. Kachanov and Barbara A. Paldus

Cavity ring-down spectroscopy has the potential to revolutionize environmental and agricultural monitoring, industrial process control and the detection and identification of hazardous materials. more>>


Testing DWDM Components for Loss and Dispersion

Thomas Jensen, Oliver Funke and Ulrich Wagemann

As networks move to speeds of 10 Gbit/s and beyond per wavelength channel, it is no longer sufficient to test components for loss. Precise characterization of dispersion properties is also a necessity. more>>


The Dynamics of Semiconductor Optical Amplifiers: Modeling and Applications

Jesper Mørk, Mads L. Nielsen and Tommy W. Berg

In tomorrow’s fiber optic networks, a new generation of quantum-dot-based semiconductor optical amplifiers may well be the linear amplifier of choice. more>>


Scatterings

Pulses

Electronic Information

How To Affix Images in Microsoft Word Documents

Sissie Hsiao

Affixing images in Word documents is a source of confusion for many Microsoft Office users. There may be problems with placement, text wrapping and captioning. Luckily, most of these problems can be addressed by following a series of steps involving insertion and layout. more>>


Light Touch

The Oily Mirrors: A Locked Room Mystery

Stephen R. Wilk

The author's laser setup was done in clean-room conditions and at constant temperature. So what was causing his beam to degrade? more>>


OSA Today

Optics InfoBase Puts OSA Journals at Your Fingertips

Kathleen Youngworth

Optics InfoBase, OSA’s online repository of optics knowledge, allows access to 47,000 journal articles. Here, Kathleen Youngworth, a recent doctoral graduate from the Institute of Optics in Rochester, N.Y., explains how the service works. more>>


Washington Focus

Scientists, Engineers Call on Capitol Hill for "Congressional Visits Day"

Tom Price

Congressional Visits Day is an annual event sponsored by a coalition of three dozen scientific, engineering, educational and business organizations. It sends scientists and their allies to Capitol Hill in an attempt to boost federal support for research.More than 200 people participated this year, including about 15 from OSA and the International Society for Optical Engineering (SPIE). more>>

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