Tuesday, August 16, 2016

HP4E (continued)

HP4E is a long-running campaign: "hexapents for everyone" is what it means.  A role model campaign was Guido van Rossum's CP4E, or "computer programming for everyone".  The latter had DARPA funding for long enough to get Tkinter + IDLE out the door, which popularized Python among Windows fans, one of the largest user bases in the 1990s.

You'll find the gamer community, around Civilization especially, were hip to the idea of a "macroscope" (globe) divided into, not trapezoidal, not quadrilateral, but hexagonal, and a few pentagonal tiles.  That's a "look".  If you're into fashion, you know about "looks".  The hexagon goes well with carbon chemistry.  Why?  Graphene.  Nanotubes. Buckyballs.

As a long-time attender at ISEPP lectures, run by my friend Terry Bristol, I've been privy to a lot of hexapent talk. I even have an email from Harold Kroto, let me share it:

Date: Mon, May 27, 2013 at 8:40 AM
Subject: RE Buckminsterfullerene

Dear Kirby
Thanks for your update and link to your very interesting blog

At the end of a lecture a few weeks ago I was asked
by Martin Saunders how the name came about ...
Ed Applewhite's account indicates that I named it
and Rick did not like the name (at the time!...somewhat
of a euphemism actually!) ...but does not
give the context.  Here is an email I sent to Martin:

Dear Martin
It was very nice to meet up again and remember our discussions at Masada I shall send you a copy of our MS on Ne22 in carbonaceous chondrites as soon as I have refined the first draft and also make any useful comments (should I have them) on your MS on He@C60 as soon as I can.

At the end of my talk yesterday you asked how the name Buckminsterfullerene arose

The sequence of events is as follows: Smalley and I wrote the original draft of  the discovery manuscript together.  At one point the question arose at to what  the title should be. Smalley asked me to suggest a possible title.  I responded on the spot with these words: “C sixty colon space Buckminsterfullerene”.  Smalley typed this in exactly and to my memory made little or no comment and I guess did not think too much about it at the time.  I concocted the title on the spur of  the moment because Buckminster Fuller's structures had been one (there was another!) of the strong influences on my thinking about what the structure of C60 might be.  This was partly because I had visited Buckminster Fuller US pavilion at Expo Montreal in 1967.  In addition this beautiful night-time photograph
in special copy of Graphis magazine, devoted to Expo67, had made a very strong memorable impression in my mind.  I had suggested that we withdraw a book by BF from the Rice library which Smalley did. I was a visitor and had no library credentials.  There are very few images of the simple truncated icosahedral (soccerball) structure in the book though there is one and BF is actually standing in it.

At the time I was quietly satisfied that the –ene ending worked so perfectly from a chemical point of view and furthermore the name, though rather long, scanned very nicely...doubly satisfying.

In the Ed Applewhite article http://www.4dsolutions.net/synergetica/eja1.html (extract attached) Smalley corroborates the fact that I gave C60 this name...a name that Smalley really did not like at all as is also indicated in the Applewhite article.

Some time later Smalley received a letter from Alex Nickon about the name.  He was so disenchanted with it at the time that he gave me the letter and told me to respond as it was my invention. I did respond and here is Nickon's book entry:

I hope this answers your question satisfactorily!

Best wishes