Clifford V. Johnson is a professor in USC’s Physics & Astronomy Department. His research focuses on developing theoretical tools for the precise description of the fundamental constituents of nature and their interactions—involving physics on the smallest and largest scales, from elementary particles to cosmology. He works on superstring theory, quantum gravity, and quantum field theory, with applications to objects as diverse as quarks and black holes. He is the author of D-Branes, a Cambridge Monograph on Mathematical Physics. His work on the public understanding of science includes writing articles for, and commentary in, such publications as SEED, Discover, and New Scientist; consulting for the arts and media; and regular contributions to programs such as The Universe on the History Channel. Johnson also writes a blog called Asymptotia, where he regularly discusses a variety of topics, including science, the arts, gardening, and food.