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February 7, 2005
One Problem Solved, Anyway
Before I start off tonight, I wanted to welcome another advertiser on the site, the folks at GenomeWeb over there in the corner. Glad to have 'em!
Thanks to the people who commented on yesterday's question. My Corantean overlord(s) suggested a useful solution as well, since (as Jack Vinson guessed), I'm set up to only display the most recent posts on the front page. Pasting in the old material, saving it as a draft, and then changing its date sends it directly to the category without having it appear up front.
So, the first thing I've added from the archives is my series on chemical warfare, which was written in September of 2002. It's in that "Chem/Bio Warfare" category over on the right, naturally enough. (This was written in the run-up to the Iraq war, and the last post in the series was soon overtaken by events. I note, though, that I speculated that Iraq might have far less in its stockpiles than people had estimated - I just didn't realize quite how much less.) But most of the series is still worth a read, if you're interested in that sort of thing. You'll learn about the morning that a German chemist first synthesized a human nerve gas, not realizing quite what he'd made until it was time to dive for the door. And you'll hear about my own cold-sweat encounter with phosgene gas, which I hope not to repeat any time soon.
This'll be it for tonight. I'll be heading into the lab tomorrow morning to see if I have a useful one-pot way to make a five-membered heterocycle, or if I have an orange mess in the bottom of my flask. The most likely outcome is that it won't work, and if it works, the most likely result is two different isomers (with the wrong one predominating.) But I don't know any of that for sure, and that's why we run the darn experiments, y'know. Hope springs eternal - that's one thing we prove in research every morning.
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