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AUGUST 14, 2000 VOL. 156 NO. 6

  ALSO IN TIME
COVER: In a League of His Own
Tiger Woods, the golfing sensation, has owned his sport this year. With six tournaments in the bag, he's the all-time money winner, and his only competition comes not from peers but from himself

INDONESIA: Unrelenting Pressure

Indonesia's Wahid faces up to his political friends and foes. At least he won't be impeached

KASHMIR: Give Peace a Chance
The Indian government opens negotiations with Kashmiri separatists even as militant groups unleash a new wave of lethal violence in the disputed territory

CRIME: Reel Life, Real Life

In a caper right out of a movie script, India's most wanted criminal kidnaps one of its most famous actors

HONG KONG: Fight of Abode
Arson—or was it self-immolation?—in the immigration office sparks new fears about would-be residents from the mainland

KOREA: Unsporting Behavior
A female basketball player's injury highlights the problem of coaches who go overboard on physical punishment

JAPAN: Splash Down
Swimming star Suzu Chiba is left off the national Olympic team. Is it simply because the authorities don't like her?

BEAUTY: About Face
Online and in stores, Chinese-American Susan Yee is selling cosmetics designed specifically for Asian complexions

INNOVATORS: Edgy Science
Six up-and-coming researchers who are pushing the limits and setting the scientific agenda for the new century

SPOTLIGHT

MILESTONES

TRAVEL WATCH: Singapore, the United Nations of Food

INNOVATORS: SCIENCE
Postcards From the Edge
By MICHAEL D. LEMONICK

The public face of scientific genius tends to be old and graying. We think of Albert Einstein's disheveled mop, Charles Darwin's majestic beard, Isaac Newton's wrinkled visage—not to mention the balding luminaries who accept their Nobel Prizes in Stockholm each December. Yet the truth is that the breakthroughs that fire our imagination and change our lives are usually made by men and women who are still in their 30s or 40s—and that includes Einstein, Newton and Darwin. It's no surprise, really; younger scientists are less invested than their elders in the intellectual dogma of the day. They question authority instinctively. They don't believe it when they're told a new idea is crazy, so they're free to do the impossible.


Visit TIME.com's Innovators site for more.

To get a preview of the unsettling truths science will be uncovering in this new century, then, it makes sense to look at young researchers in the most creative phase of their careers, when formal education is complete but eminence still hovers indistinctly in the future. Scientific insiders already know who the edgiest young thinkers are, and now you can meet some of them as well: a biologist looking in scalding-hot springs for clues to the origin of life; an astrophysicist searching for evidence of the "antigravity" force that Einstein once dismissed; a neuroscientist studying how the brain, despite what all the textbooks said, can grow new cells. The impact of their work may not be fully appreciated for decades, if not longer. But then you could have said the same about an obscure patent clerk and his crackpot theory of relativity almost exactly a century ago.

Write to TIME at mail@web.timeasia.com

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