Advice to a young scientist

Created by Joe 3 years ago

I met Mike when he came to Canberra Australia in 1982-83. I was just finishing my PhD with advisors Simon Laughlin and Allan Snyder. Mike was an examiner, along with Bill Levick and Ed Pugh. I had the great pleasure to collaborate with Mike and Dan-Eric Nilsson on the optics of the butterfly eye, specifically nymphalid butterflies with afocal apposition optics and reflecting tapeta that allowed us to see the beautiful waveguide modes trapped by the rhabdom and reflected back out of each facet. I learnt so much from Mike: about vision, and also about doing science. Mike wrote up/graphed his results before the end of the day so he could start building on his findings in the morning. I have always followed that “advice”, gained by osmosis, and have tried to ram it down my own students' throats. Mike also encouraged me to go and do a postdoc with Jonathan Ashmore. This was a disaster. But I landed on my feet going to the Hudspeth lab and have never looked back.

Joe Howard

Yale University