Sunday, January 15, 2006

Interstellar Magnetic Slinky

Aside from being a potentially great band name, the title of this post refers to a press release from UC Berkeley called, Astronomers find magnetic Slinky in Orion.

I point to it because, in the world of press releases, having a title that rises above the noise is crucial. To understand the challenge, let’s look at the press release’s lead paragraph:

Astronomers announced today what may be the firs discovery of a helical magnetic field in interstellar space, coiled like a snake around a gas cloud in the constellation of Orion.

Getting from that to “Astronomers find magnetic Slinky in Orion” is the difference between something that won’t get attention and something that will.

It also helps to have some eye-catching imagery:

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