sdmonroe wrote to mention an MSNBC article discussing the likely eventual replacement of common light bulbs by LEDs. That replacement is likely to come quicker thanks to an accidental discovery announced this week. From the article: "Michael Bowers, a graduate student at Vanderbilt University, was just trying to make really small quantum dots, which are crystals generally only a few nanometers big. ... When you shine a light on quantum dots or apply electricity to them, they react by producing their own light, normally a bright, vibrant color. But when Bowers shined a laser on his batch of dots, something unexpected happened. 'I was surprised when a white glow covered the table,' Bowers said. 'The quantum dots were supposed to emit blue light, but instead they were giving off a beautiful white glow.'"