National Advisory Committee

The Mechanical Universe

Throughout the development of The Mechanical Universe, the National Advisory Committee has given its sage advice concerning policy and direction for the project. Its membership includes distinguished professionals in television, film, physics, general education, and national affairs.

Frank Capra (deceased), well-known producer and director of motion pictures (It's a Wonderful Life, Mr. Smith Goes to Washington). Mr. Capra made a superb series of science films in the 1950s and has been interested in and enthusiastic about this project since its inception.

John Dowling, Professor of Physics, Mansfield State College, and coordinator of the Instructional Media Committee of the American Association of Physics Teachers. He has reviewed physics films for The American Journal of Physics and was largely responsible for research and compilation of A Cinescope of Physics, an AAPT film resource book that lists and evaluates several hundred physics films.

Charles Holbrow, Professor of Physics, Colgate University. Dr. Holbrow is former chairman of the physics department at Colgate and former editor of Physics Today. He is involved with studies of space colonization, and has written about the history of nuclear physics.

Gerald Holton, Mallinckrodt Professor of Physics and the History of Science at Harvard University, and, concurrently, James R. Killian Professor at the MIT. He was one of the key people in the Harvard Project Physics, a course taught in many high schools. He won the Oersted Medal, a national award for physics teaching; was the first natural scientist named the National Endowment for the Humanities Jefferson Lecturer; and as co-producer has won two CINE Gold Eagle Awards for documentary film.

Shirley Hufstedler, former Secretary of the Department of Education.

Robert Karplus, University of California, Berkeley. Dr. Karplus has served as Director of the Science Curriculum Improvement Study and as Associate Director of the Lawrence Hall of Science. He is also a winner of the Oersted Medal.

Joseph Krieger, Brooklyn College of CUNY. Dr. Krieger is former chairman of the physics department.

William Layton, Advanced Placement Physics teacher at Palisades High School, a school that has one of the largest AP programs in the country.

Frank Oppenheimer (deceased), Director of the Palace of Arts and Science Exploratorium in San Francisco. Dr. Oppenheimer was a nationally known figure in science communication, with interests in the history of contemporary physics and physics pedagogy.

David Ridgway, Executive Director of Chemical Education Material Study, Lawrence Hall of Science. Mr. Ridgeway has produced hundreds of educational films, including the highly successful CHEM Study films.