This book is not about science, but about a scientist – a Nobel laureate, a famous American physicist and a talented teacher. The collection of autobiographical stories was first published in 1985 by WW Norton, edited by Ralph Leighton, and quickly became a bestseller with a warm welcome from critics. The book was published in Russian the next year in the journal Science and Life.
The collection is read very easily and naturally. The original edition’s subtitle, Adventures of a Curious Character, hit the mark. In a series of small stories, Feynman managed to colourfully tell about his amazingly humane and honest vision of modern science, to demonstrate his position in life.
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One thing that is involuntarily amazed when reading a book is his passion for learning new things. One could assume that the world-famous physicist would be fascinated only by physics, but Feynman was interested in almost everything he encountered. He was quite successful in art, hanging out in Las Vegas casinos, playing the Brazilian bongo, meeting girls in strip bars in Arizona and breaking into safes in Los Alamos. It seems that this list could be continued indefinitely.
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Along with funny stories, and sometimes just humorous situations, quite serious questions are raised. For example, the problem with higher education in Brazil, where students simply memorize definitions and formulas, but do not completely understand the very essence of the issue being studied.
There is an opinion that this problem is not unique, here is what the author himself writes: “Finally, I said that I do not understand how you can teach anyone using a self-replicating system in which people take exams and then teach others to take exams, but nobody knows anything. “
A separate place in the book is occupied by the demonstration of the need to check and recheck input data in science, the need to always question sources. Feynman has repeatedly re-run experiments, even if the results have already been published in several places. The easiest way to finally come to a standstill is to accept the initially wrong premises.
This book can be safely recommended to a wide range of readers. It is written in a very light language, with a minimum of specific terms and technical details; This collection of stories is more about life philosophy, approach to learning and ways of interacting with the world around us. Richard Feynman is undoubtedly an excellent speaker and enthusiastic storyteller, his books are still reprinted with enviable regularity, and his lectures and interviews attract a lot of viewers.
Richard Feynman’s course of lectures “The Nature of Physical Law”
Famous Lectures are given by Feynman at Cornell University in 1964 (BBC filming). This is perhaps the best-known course given in the Messenger Lectures, a prestigious award given since 1924. As an award winner, Feynman gave a course of lectures, which was then published by the University Press in the form of a book. Previously, from 1945 to 1950, he taught theoretical physics at the university.
The entire course consists of seven videos, perfectly translated and dubbed by Vert Dider, providing an overview of the most famous laws and directions of physics. In the first part, the famous physicist and popularizer of science talk about Isaac Newton’s law of universal gravitation, which, in fact, laid the foundations of physics in its modern sense.