A New Kind of Science: Second Anniversary

Date: May 14, 2004

From: Stephen Wolfram

Subject: NKS: Two Years Later

Today marks the second anniversary of the release of A NEW KIND OF SCIENCE. And I'm very happy to be able to report that NKS is continuing to develop extremely well.

A wonderful community is forming around the ideas of NKS. The pace of research and applications is steadily building---with an average of about one new paper now appearing every day. NKS classes and courses are being taught. And several times each week we hear about an ambitious new initiative based on NKS---in technology, or art, or business or somewhere else.

We're trying to do our part to help. Earlier this year we released the online version of the complete book. We launched the NKS Forum. We just sponsored the second annual conference: NKS 2004. And we're working hard to make www.wolframscience.com the best possible reference source and meeting place for the NKS community.

At the end of June, I'm looking forward to our second NKS Summer School---where I hope we'll educate another outstanding group of NKS pioneers. (We're still accepting applications this week.) And later this year we'll be starting an R&D fellowship program at our new facility near Boston.

It's been exciting to see everything that's been happening with NKS over the past year. But it's now clearer than ever that this is just the beginning.

Much of what's being done so far on NKS has focused on specific models, and specific conceptual conclusions. But ultimately the real power of NKS comes from its core: the basic science of "pure NKS"---and its methodology of systematically exploring and understanding what's out there in the computational universe.

New methodologies generally spread slowly. But pure NKS is definitely gaining momentum. And this year we'll be announcing a major initiative that I think will be an important step in moving it forward.

Years from now, pure NKS will no doubt be a mature field like physics or mathematics---with its own complete infrastructure for research, education and applications. But for now it is still wide open, and full of terrific opportunities for professionals, students and amateurs alike.

I hope you've been able to spend time on NKS. It's always great to hear what people are doing with NKS, and I hope you'll let us know if you have something to share.

Stephen Wolfram