Monday, January 04, 2010

Einstein: His Life and Universe

I recently finished reading Einstein: His Life and Universe (2007) by Walter Isaacson.

A superb book. Einstein's life and work, as we all know, is the stuff of popular myth and legend. But what was the real Einstein like?

Here's what struck or surprised me about the man behind the myths and the legends:
  • His tenacity;
  • His sense of humour;
  • His childlike sense of wonder and curiosity;
  • His unshakeable faith in the orderliness of the universe;
  • His intellectual courage and boldness;
  • His human frailties.
In 1909, some four years after his annus mirabilis, and after numerous failed attempts, Einstein finally got offered an academic position (at the University of Zurich). "So, now I too am an official member of the guild of whores,” he remarked.

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