By Peter Freund
This attention-grabbing booklet assembles human tales approximately physicists and mathematicians. Remarkably, those tales cluster round a few normal topics having to do with the interplay among scientists, and with the impression of ancient occasions corresponding to the arrival of fascism and communism within the 20th century on scientists habit. in short, yet lucidly, a number of the attractive technology that introduced those scientists jointly within the first position is defined
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Extra resources for A Passion for Discovery
He just couldn’t stomach “naked” letters, be they from the Latin or the Greek alphabet; he liked his letters neatly dressed. From then on I kept sprinkling random hats and twiddles and whatnots on my symbols, but now we could both concentrate on the matter at hand and not on these silly ornaments. Unfortunately, Stueckelberg’s papers are also so adorned and to the uninitiated reader they look forbidding. qxd 7/4/2007 1:50 PM Page 19 FA A True Aristocrat 19 does not quite enjoy mass circulation.
The prediction of the π-meson — later experimentally discovered — is now generally attributed to Hideki Yukawa, who received the Nobel Prize for his work. Stueckelberg let Pauli talk him out of it. Pauli had told him it was the most stupid thing he had ever heard and warned him that his respect for Stueckelberg would vanish, were he to publish it. Brilliant, very thorough, very conservative, and very critical, Pauli had repeatedly talked others out of major discoveries as well. The first physicist to discover the spin of the electron as the natural explanation of some experimental results in atomic physics was the twenty-one year old German Ralph Kronig, but Pauli told him it was all nonsense and convinced him not to publish.
E. upside down hats), twiddles or bars according to whether the physical quantity it represented was even or odd under space reflection and under time reversal, even though for the matter under discussion neither space reflection nor time reversal may have been of any relevance whatsoever. Having to track these irrelevancies wasted a lot of time and concentration. Once I became aware that I had inadvertently made a mistake — I had put a hat where a hac˚ ek was called for — but Stueckelberg didn’t notice.