It is known since long ago that “birth defects” of crystals appearing during their nucleation and growth may hardly be eliminated by further “education,” like heat treatment. Even less hope, if any, exists for fabricating fancy device structures unless we use detailed techniques of crystal growth, techniques based on interfacial processes, and determine the real defect structure of the crystal or film.
These practical issues encourage those who are excited by the goal to penetrate into processes at solid surfaces and should encourage those who make decisions on funding this research.
In what follows I emphasize selected general issues that seem to be hot today and that have been addressed at Symposium B of the 1992 Fall MRS Meeting. Of course, the selection is a matter of taste.