In the presence of gods

From Wikipedia, James Gleick in Genius: The Life and Science of Richard Feynman:

This was Richard Feynman nearing the crest of his powers. At twenty-three … there was no physicist on earth who could match his exuberant command over the native materials of theoretical science. It was not just a facility at mathematics (though it had become clear … that the mathematical machinery emerging from the Wheeler–Feynman collaboration was beyond Wheeler’s own ability). Feynman seemed to possess a frightening ease with the substance behind the equations, like Albert Einstein at the same age, like the Soviet physicist Lev Landau—but few others.

Also, last week I went to a lecture by Jon Kleinberg, Tisch University Professor of Computer Science at Cornell University and winner of a MacArthur Foundation Fellowship (also known as a Genius Award), whose early research formed a large part of Google’s success as a search engine.

Some days we are reminded that we walk among giants, that we live in the presence of gods. On those days, we are humbled and uplifted at the same time.


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Shrutarshi Basu

Programmer, writer and engineer, currently working out of Cornell University in Ithaca, New York.

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