In August 1960, Ivar Giaever published a discovery about electron tunneling into superconductors; the discovery was elegant and had the esthetic simplicity that makes a scientist wonder why it had not been made before. It is too early to assess the importance of the discovery; it may be recorded as only a small but neat strand of science, or the train of work it has set off may produce a web of new knowledge about solids. Regardless of the final assessment that science makes of it, the discovery was surrounded by novel circumstances that dramatize the unexpected course of discovery.

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