In this interview, David Zierler, Oral Historian for AIP, interviews Jagdish (Jay) Narayan, John C.C. Fan Family Distinguished Chair Professor in the Department of Materials Science and Engineering at North Carolina State University. Narayan explains his approach to materials science from the vantage point of understanding how materials create and advance technology. He explains his longstanding affiliation with Oak Ridge National Laboratory, and he recounts his childhood in Kanpur, northern India. Narayan describes his studies at IIT Kanpur in physics, math, and engineering, and he explains his decision to pursue a PhD at UC Berkeley in materials science under the direction of Jack Washburn. He discusses his thesis research on introducing defects in oxides using electron microscopy, and he describes his postdoctoral studies at Berkeley Lab before forming the Thin Film and Electron Microscopy Group at Oak Ridge. Narayan explains the discovery of laser annealing and rapid thermal processing of semiconductors and its many applications, and he describes his close collaboration with the Division of Materials Science at the DOE. He narrates the discovery of Q-carbon and he explains what it means to find a new material in nature and what the potential commercial applications are, including the creation of synthetic diamonds. Narayan explains his decision to join the faculty at NC State, and his partnership with the state government to develop the Microelectronics Center. He reflects on his contributions as an inventor, particularly relating to the formation of supersaturated semiconductor allows via ion implantation for semiconductor device fabrication. At the end of the interview, Narayan explains how physics drives his research sensibilities, why he is devoted to improving the resolution of electron microscopes, and why he is excited for the future of diamond and c-BN based high-power devices.