Grandpa and STEM

This is for all the STEM devotees out there and for those who still balance their checkbooks.  My brother just sent me the below quotes from a speech that my granddad (Allen V. Astin) gave in 1953 to the American Physical Society. My granddad was the director of the NBS (Now the NIST) for 18 years from 1951-1969.

“We believe in the philosophy of Lord Kelvin, that basic understanding in science depends on measurement — the reduction of observation to numbers.”

“We believe that there is a romance in precision measurement, and that the ability to extend the absolute accuracy of measurement by one decimal place frequently demands as much ingenuity, perseverance, and analytical competence as does the discovery of a new principle or effect in science.”

“We stress reliability and accuracy in our operations, and in checking and rechecking our results… We stress objectivity and fairness in our operations and attempt to insure them by a willingness to accept the results of well-planned, reproducible experiments, and the logical conclusions therefrom.”

“We take pride in the concept of science, in providing assistance to science, to industry, and to government.”

— Allen V. Astin

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