Forrest Mims

Forrest Mims

__NOTOC__ Forrest M. Mims III is an amateur scientist [ 'Country Scientist' starting column today in Express-News], October 30, 2006] and magazine columnist and the author of the popular "Engineer's Mini-Notebook" series of instructional books originally sold in Radio Shack electronics stores. Mims graduated from Texas A&M University in 1966 (major in government with minors in English and history) then became a commissioned officer in the U.S. Air Force. Although Mims has no formal academic training in science he has a successful career as a science author, researcher, lecturer and syndicated columnist. For instance, his series of electronics books for Radio Shack sold over 7 million copies. Mims edits [ "The Citizen Scientist"] —the journal of the Society for Amateur Scientists and is also the Chairman of the Environmental Science Section of the Texas Academy of Science. He also teaches electronics and atmospheric science at the University of the Nations, an unaccredited (by choice [According to the University of the Nations website, the university has intentionally not applied for accreditation in any nation's education system. [] ] ) Christian university in Hawaii.cite journal |last= |first= |authorlink= |coauthors= |year=2006 |month= |title=Watchmen for the World |journal=Transformations |volume=3 |issue= |pages= |id= |url=|accessdate=2007-08-12]

Mims does scientific studies of sunlight, the atmosphere, mosquitoes and bacteria using instruments he designs and makes. A simple instrument he developed to measure the ozone layer earned him a [ Rolex Award for Enterprise] in 1993. Mims is a member of the Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers, the National Science Teachers Association and several scientific societies.

Forrest Mims is also an advocate for Intelligent design and serves as a Fellow of the International Society for Complexity, Information and Design and the Discovery Institute. [ cite web |url=|title=Discovery Institute-Forrest M. Mims |accessdate=2007-08-11|publisher=Discovery Institute ] [cite web | title=What follows are selected excerpts from an open letter by Forrest M. Mims III to Daniel Ji | | url= | accessdate=2006-04-27] He is also a skeptic of global warming. [Temperature doesn’t affect global warming Forrest Mims, Seguin Gazette-Enterprise, September 1 1999. [ Publications] ,] [ [ Questions and Answers About Climate Change] Forrest M. Mims III. Citizen Scientist, Society for Amateur Scientists, March 11 2005]


, had become very successful selling kits for project articles published in "Popular Electronics". [cite journal
author = Forrest M. Mims III | year = 1984 | month = November | title = The Altair story; early days at MITS
journal = Creative Computing | volume = 10 | issue = 11 | pages = 17 | publisher = Creative Computing | url = | accessdate = 2007-03-17
] Mims wanted to do a construction article along with his LED article. Roberts and Mims decided on an optical communication system that would send voice over an LED beam. Both stories were in the November 1970 issues of "Popular Electronics" and were featured on the cover. [cite journal | last = Mims | first = Forrest | year = 1970 | month = November | title = Light-emitting Diodes | journal = Popular Electronics | volume = 33 | issue = 5 | pages = 35–43 | publisher = Ziff Davis ] [cite journal | last = Mims | first = Forrest | coauthors = Henry E Roberts | year = 1970 | month = November | title = Assemble an LED Communicator - The Opticom | journal = Popular Electronics | volume = 33 | issue = 5 | pages = 45–50, 98–99 | publisher = Ziff Davis ]

The kit sales were poor so Roberts shifted his interest to developing a kit calculator. Zaller, Cagle and Mims sold their stock in MITS back to Roberts, for the same price as their initial investment, $100. Mims left the Air Force to pursue a career as a free lance writer. [cite journal | last = Mims | first = Forrest | year = 1985 | month = January | title = The Tenth Anniversary of the Altair 8800 | journal = Computers & Electronics | volume = 23 | issue = 1 | pages = 58–62, 81–82 | publisher = Ziff Davis ] He wrote articles for "Popular Electronics" and "Radio Electronics" and then in October 1975 started a column in "Popular Electronics" that ran until the last issue in 1985. Ed Roberts developed a calculator kit, followed by the Altair 8800 computer. The Altair launched the personal computer revolution.

Mims also wrote a series of electronics project books called the "Engineer's Notebooks", which were sold through Radio Shack stores for many years. These books, consisting of hand drawn schematic diagrams in the style of a laboratory notebook, featured projects that could be constructed using the components then being sold by Radio Shack stores.

"Scientific American" controversy

In May 1988 Mims wrote to Scientific American proposing that he take over The Amateur Scientist column, which needed a new editor. Despite concern about his views, he was asked to write some sample columns, which he did in 1990. [FM Mims III, Sunspots and How to Observe Them Safely, Scientific American, 262, 6, 130-133, June 1990] [FM Mims III, How to Monitor Ultraviolet Radiation from the Sun, Scientific American, 263, 2, 106-109, August 1990.] [FM Mims III, A Remote-Control Camera that Catches the Wind and Captures the Landscape, Scientific American, 263, 2, 126-129, October 1990.] Mims was not offered the position, due, Mims alleges, to his Christian and creationist views. The ACLU of Texas offered to take his case, but he declined. [ [ Defending Darwinism: How Far is Too Far?. Origins Research 13:1. Hartwig, Mark ] ] Others have argued that the situation is more complicated than Mims has claimed [ [ Talk.Origins page on the Scientific American controversy] ] .

Pianka controversy

In 2006 Mims expressed concern with a March 3, 2006 lecture by scientist Eric Pianka.cite web | title=Meeting Doctor Doom | work=The Citizen Scientist: Feature 1 | url= | accessdate=2006-04-27] In this lectures at the 109th Annual Meeting of the Texas Academy of Science held at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas, Mims alleges that Pianka advocated genocide with a genetically enhanced Ebola virus with the goal of exterminating up to 90% of the human population. Mims disapproved when the Texas Academy of Science awarded Pianka with a plaque naming him "2006 Distinguished Texas Scientist". He confronted Pianka with the statement "The undeniable issue at hand is that you have advocated genocide and mass extermination to your students and to the Texas Academy of Science. The logical conclusion I am exploring is the genocidal racism inherent in your goal."

Pianka has stated that Mims took his statements out of context and that Pianka was stating what would happen from biological principles alone if present human population trends continue, and that he was not in any way advocating that it happen.


External links

* [ Forrest Mims's homepage]
* [ Forrest Mims's science page]
* [ Society for Amateur Scientists]

Pianka controversy-related

* [ Pianka, Mims, Misanthropy & Genocide] : Commentary from Anthropik blog.
*PZ Myers comments [ on "Pianka v. Mims "] on Pharyngula.
* [ Commentary on the Mims and Pianka controversy] by James Redford.

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Mims — or MIMS may refer to: Mims, D. Jeffrey, American artist, born 1954 Mims (rapper), stage name for American rapper Shawn Mims Mims, Florida, USA Forrest Mims, magazine columnist and author. Mims, Leland G., Louisiana local politician MIMs, Music in …   Wikipedia

  • Mims-Pianka controversy — In early March 2006 the Texas Academy of Science (TAS) honored University of Texas biologist Eric Pianka as its 2006 Distinguished Texas Scientist during its 109th Annual Meeting at Lamar University in Beaumont, Texas. In a March 3 2006 lecture… …   Wikipedia

  • Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems — MITS logo used from 1972 to 1975. Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems (MITS) was an American electronics company founded in Albuquerque, New Mexico that began manufacturing electronic calculators in 1971 and personal computers in 1975.[1] …   Wikipedia

  • Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems — MITS logo usado desde 1972 a 1975 Micro Instrumentation and Telemetry Systems (MITS) fue una compañía Americana de electrónica fundada en Albuquerque que comenzó fabricando calculadoras electrónicas en 1971 y computadoras personales en 1975.[1]… …   Wikipedia Español

  • Ed Roberts (computer engineer) — Ed Roberts Ed Roberts in 2002 Born Henry Edward Roberts September 13, 1941(1941 09 13) Miami, Florida, United States …   Wikipedia

  • Altair 8800 — The MITS Altair 8800 was a microcomputer design from 1975, based on the Intel 8080 CPU and sold as a mail order kit through advertisements in Popular Electronics , Radio Electronics and other hobbyist magazines. The designers intended to sell… …   Wikipedia

  • Popular Electronics — was a magazine started by Ziff Davis Publishing in October 1954 for hobbyist and experimenters in electronics. It soon became the World s Largest Selling Electronics Magazine . The circulation was 240,151 in April 1957 and 400,000 by 1963. [The… …   Wikipedia

  • Model Rocketry (magazine) — Model Rocketry September 1969 issue of Model Rocketry. Managing Editor Gordon Mandell Categories Hobby magazines Frequency Monthly …   Wikipedia

  • William A. Dembski — Born July 18, 1960 (1960 07 18) (age 51) Chicago, Illinois Education University of Illinoi …   Wikipedia

  • Altair 8800 — La Altair 8800 de MITS fue un microordenador diseñado en 1975, basado en la CPU Intel 8080A. Se vendía como un kit a través de la revista Popular Electronics, los diseñadores planearon vender solo unos pocos cientos de ejemplares a los… …   Wikipedia Español