If you don't have a subscription to Physics Today, RUN, don't walk, to your nearest library that has a subscription of one and COPY this article! To commemorate the AIP 75 years, Marvin Cohen wrote a TERRIFIC article on the history of condensed matter physics in the June 2006 issue of Physics today. You can read for yourself why CMP has played such a central role in physics, and why it connects both the "basic, fundamental physics" research with "applied". It's one of the few areas of physics that can claim both. Don't miss this. Zz.