January 1999

Columns

HPIn SHE: Making pictures

Long ago, I used to write "appreciations" (i.e., informed guesswork) about likely technology developments of the Evil Empire. Surprisingly to an outsider, there was great emphasis on honesty. Our depa..

Whetton, Chris, ility Engineering

Long ago, I used to write "appreciations" (i.e., informed guesswork) about likely technology developments of the Evil Empire. Surprisingly to an outsider, there was great emphasis on honesty. Our department head could get very angry with anyone that he thought was "making pictures" – our jargon phrase for writing what our political masters expected to hear and then manipulating the data to fit the "picture." Frequent offenses in this area could incur the ultimate sanction from which no researcher ever returned – transfer to the section dealing with fisheries and forestry. Those days are gone, but I was reminded of them the other day by a television documentary on the destr

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