Now, about people asking me what soft matter research is good for – you know, in real life: It seems to be good to develop new better adhesives! I especially like some of the pictures because they remind me of experimental model systems I compared some theoretical results with. And this is so big news and easy to understand that even Spiegel online has an article about it (in German).
Also, the german society of physics has an article about a new kind of magnetic material that has been found in liquid crystals. Liquid crystals are small sticks that order so that they all point in the same direction and are for example used for LCDs (which just means liquid crystal display).
On a different subject, namely, women in science: People have been telling me that as a woman in academia in Germany, it is really easy to find a position right now, because of political pressure. So for example, when someone at a University hires a man, he has to explain why he does not hire a woman instead. This sounds a bit unfair at times, and probably is. However, looking at the other angles, there are still more women droping out of physics (and generally science) then men (in percentages, of course), especially after PhD. Wonder why? Here and here are some answers.