TEMPE, Ariz. "Quantum Man: Richard Feynman's Life in Science," ASU Foundation Professor and Director of the Origins Project Lawrence M. Krauss' recent book about a legendary and sometimes very public modern physicist, has been chosen as the 2011 Book of the Year by Physics World magazine in the UK.
Feynman is one of the most famous physicists of the second half of the 20th century, but he did much to bring science to the people, taking time to explain in simple terms some of its complexities and draw people into the exquisite world of science. One prime example of Feynman (who died in 1988) on the world stage was his explanation of the rigidity of space shuttle O-rings as a leading mechanical cause for the Challenger disaster in January of 1986.
Through his autobiographical memoirs and such public activities, Feynman became a well-known public figure, and as such has been the subject of numerous biographies. Krauss' biography stands out, however, as the first scientific biography of the eminent Nobel-prizewinning physicist, who revolutionized our understanding of the quantum universe.
"Richard Feynman was one of the most colorful physicists of the 20th century but, more importantly, he was one of the most beloved and important physicists as well," said Krauss, a theoretical physicist and cosmologist.
"I wanted to write a scientific book about Feynman because the public knows of him as a curious character, but what was clear was people did not know why he was revered by physicists," Krauss said. "I also wanted to use Feynman as a hook to talk about 20th and 21st century physics. From quantum mechanics, to quantum computing, from particle physics to gravitation, Feynman laid the groundwork for much of what is at the cusp of our theoretical explorations of the Universe today."
As a scientist, Feynman had an extraordinary ability to concentrate all of his energy on a single problem. He is known for his contributi
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Arizona State University