Perhaps a few of you were present at the 1954 Symposium on University Reactors, sponsored by the present august institutions and by the Subcommittee on University Reactors of the National Research Council. If so, you will remember the spirit of the time—university reactors were the thing; the one at North Carolina had been started with ceremony and success, and several others were planned, funded, and under design. In the new auditorium at the Oak Ridge National Laboratory, with the support and blessing of the Atomic Energy Commission, enthusiasm was in full flower. In this atmosphere, there appeared a character named Dr. Diddle. Diddle was a fictitious soul—a physics department head who had been given funds for a nuclear machine, the first in his university, and from his conversation there came the chilling suggestion that perhaps a reactor might not be the best choice. Diddle's doubts may have had the effect of a damp blanket upon that conference for a few minutes; but, if so, the fires of enthusiasm quickly rekindled.

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