I have never ever noticed the Nobel prizes being awarded but this morning, remarkably, a 96-year-old US scientist, Arthur Ashkin, got the prize for physics, sharing it with two others.
He won the Nobel prize for his work on lasers, inventing a technique that has increased laser power by about a million times. Corrective eye surgery also seems to use the ‘optical tweezers’ technology he developed back in 1986. To be honest, I’m a little sketchy on the details here but Arthur himself speaks about some of it, including ‘optical trapping,’ in the video below.
Given that Ashkin has been working in his field for more than 60 years, it seems like a nice reminder about finding a vocation or ‘life mission’ – as compared to a settling with an uninspiring day job. Jobs come and go – but if we manage to find a vocation that has real meaning, we amplify our time, effort and worth. We may also positively influence countless others along the way.