Zitate von Richard Feynman

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Richard Feynman

Geburtstag: 11. Mai 1918
Todesdatum: 15. Februar 1988
Andere Namen:Richard Feynman Philips, Richard Phillips Feynman, Ричард Филлипс Фейнман

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Richard Phillips Feynman [ˈfaɪnmən] war ein amerikanischer Physiker und Nobelpreisträger des Jahres 1965.

Feynman gilt als einer der großen Physiker des 20. Jahrhunderts, der wesentliche Beiträge zum Verständnis der Quantenfeldtheorien geliefert hat. Zusammen mit Shin’ichirō Tomonaga und Julian Schwinger erhielt er 1965 den Nobelpreis für seine Arbeit zur Quantenelektrodynamik . Seine anschauliche Darstellung quantenfeldtheoretischer elementarer Wechselwirkungen durch Feynman-Diagramme ist heute ein De-facto-Standard.

Für Feynman war es immer wichtig, die unanschaulichen Gesetzmäßigkeiten der Quantenphysik Laien und Studenten nahezubringen und verständlich zu machen. An Universitäten ist seine Vorlesungsreihe weit verbreitet. In Büchern wie QED. Die seltsame Theorie des Lichts und der Materie und Character of Physical Law – wandte er sich an ein breiteres Publikum. Seine charismatische Art und die Fähigkeit, auf seine Zuhörerschaft einzugehen, ließen seine Vorlesungen und Vorträge legendär werden.

Seine unkonventionelle und nonkonformistische Art zeigte sich auch in seinen autobiographisch geprägten Büchern wie Sie belieben wohl zu scherzen, Mr. Feynman. Abenteuer eines neugierigen Physikers und Kümmert Sie, was andere Leute denken?. In einem gleichnamigen Essay prägte er den Begriff der „Cargo-Kult-Wissenschaft“ für eine wissenschaftliche Disziplin, welche zwar der Form genügt, aber den Ansprüchen an den Inhalt nicht gerecht wird. Da der Begriff Cargo-Kult ursprünglich ein Verhaltensmuster von Ureinwohnern im Südpazifik beschrieb, zeigte dessen Verwendung in Bezug auf die Wissenschaft eine gewisse feinsinnige Respektlosigkeit.

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Zitate Richard Feynman

„Ein Philosoph hat einmal behaupet: 'Naturwissenschaft setzt notwendig voraus, dass gleiche Umstände immer auch gleiche Auswirkungen haben.' Nun, dem ist nicht so.“

—  Richard Feynman
Zitiert in Tony Hey und Patrick Walters: Das Quantenuniversum, Spektrum, Heidelberg 1990, ISBN 3-8274-0315-4 Kapitel 2 "Heisenberg und die quantenmechanische Unbestimmtheit" "Seite 33.

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„Es ist wichtig, einzusehen, dass wir in der heutigen Physik nicht wissen, was Energie ist. Wir haben kein Bild davon, dass Energie in kleinen Klumpen definierter Größe vorkommt.“

—  Richard Feynman
Vorlesungen über Physik, Band I, Kap. 4.1 (Übersetzung: Heinz Köhler), Seite 46, Oldenbourg München Wien, 5. Aufl. 2007 Google Books

„We can deduce, often, from one part of physics like the law of gravitation, a principle which turns out to be much more valid than the derivation.“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: Now we have a problem. We can deduce, often, from one part of physics like the law of gravitation, a principle which turns out to be much more valid than the derivation. This doesn't happen in mathematics, that the theorems come out in places where they're not supposed to be! chapter 2, “ The Relation of Mathematics to Physics http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=M9ZYEb0Vf8U” referring to the law of conservation of angular momentum

„And therefore when we go to investigate we shouldn’t pre-decide what it is we are trying to do except to find out more about it“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: People say to me, "Are you looking for the ultimate laws of physics?" No, I'm not. I'm just looking to find out more about the world and if it turns out there is a simple ultimate law which explains everything, so be it; that would be very nice to discover. If it turns out it's like an onion with millions of layers and we're just sick and tired of looking at the layers, then that's the way it is!… And therefore when we go to investigate we shouldn’t pre-decide what it is we are trying to do except to find out more about it… My interest in science is to simply find out more about the world. p. 251-252, from interview in "The Pleasure of Finding Things Out" (1981): video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NEwUwWh5Xs4&t=45m21s (Also in book The Pleasure of Finding Things Out (1999) p. 23.)

„Why should we care about Feynman? What was so special about him? Why did he become a public icon, standing with Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking as the Holy Trinity of twentieth-century physics?“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: Why should we care about Feynman? What was so special about him? Why did he become a public icon, standing with Albert Einstein and Stephen Hawking as the Holy Trinity of twentieth-century physics? The public has demonstrated remarkably good taste in choosing its icons. All three of them are genuinely great scientists, with flashes of true genius as well as solid accomplishments to their credit. But to become an icon, it is not enough to be a great scientist. There are many other scientists, not so great as Einstein but greater than Hawking and Feynman, who did not become icons.... Scientists who become icons must not only be geniuses but also performers, playing to the crowd and enjoying public acclaim. Einstein and Feynman both grumbled about the newspaper and radio reporters who invaded their privacy, but both gave the reporters what the public wanted, sharp and witty remarks that would make good headlines. Hawking in his unique way also enjoys the public adulation that his triumph over physical obstacles has earned for him. I will never forget the joyful morning in Tokyo when Hawking went on a tour of the streets in his wheelchair and the Japanese crowds streamed after him, stretching out their hands to touch his chair. Einstein, Hawking, and Feynman shared an ability to break through the barriers that separated them from ordinary people. The public responded to them because they were regular guys, jokers as well as geniuses. The third quality that is needed for a scientist to become a public icon is wisdom. Besides being a famous joker and a famous genius, Feynman was also a wise human being whose answers to serious questions made sense. To me and to hundreds of other students who came to him for advice, he spoke truth. Like Einstein and Hawking, he had come through times of great suffering, nursing Arline through her illness and watching her die, and emerged stronger. Behind his enormous zest and enjoyment of life was an awareness of tragedy, a knowledge that our time on earth is short and precarious. The public made him into an icon because he was not only a great scientist and a great clown but also a great human being and a guide in time of trouble. Other Feynman books have portrayed him as a scientific wizard and as a storyteller. This collection of letters shows us for the first time the son caring for his father and mother, the father caring for his wife and children, the teacher caring for his students, the writer replying to people throughout the world who wrote to him about their problems and received his full and undivided attention. Freeman Dyson, in "Wise Man" http://www.nybooks.com/articles/18350, The New York Review of Books (20 October 2005)

„It is important to realize that in physics today, we have no knowledge what energy is.“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: It is important to realize that in physics today, we have no knowledge what energy is. We do not have a picture that energy comes in little blobs of a definite amount. It is not that way. volume I; lecture 4, "Conservation of Energy"; section 4-1, "What is energy?"; p. 4-2

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„Have no respect whatsoever for authority; forget who said it and instead look what he starts with, where he ends up, and ask yourself, "Is it reasonable?"“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: Doubting the great Descartes … was a reaction I learned from my father: Have no respect whatsoever for authority; forget who said it and instead look what he starts with, where he ends up, and ask yourself, "Is it reasonable?" "What Do You Care What Other People Think?", p. 28-29

„Mathematics is not just a language. Mathematics is a language plus reasoning.“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: Mathematics is not just a language. Mathematics is a language plus reasoning. It's like a language plus logic. Mathematics is a tool for reasoning. It's, in fact, a big collection of the results of some person's careful thought and reasoning. By mathematics, it is possible to connect one statement to another. chapter 2, “The Relation of Mathematics to Physics”

„Agnostic for me would be trying to weasel out and sound a little nicer than I am about this.“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: [I call myself] an atheist. Agnostic for me would be trying to weasel out and sound a little nicer than I am about this. Response when asked whether he called himself an atheist or an agnostic. The Voice of Genius: Conversations with Nobel Scientists and Other Luminaries by Denis Brian (1995), Basic Books, p. 49.

„Feynman is the young American professor, half genius and half buffoon, who keeps all physicists and their children amused with his effervescent vitality.“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: Feynman is the young American professor, half genius and half buffoon, who keeps all physicists and their children amused with his effervescent vitality. He has, however, as I have recently learned, a great deal more to him than that, and you may be interested in his story. The part of it with which I am concerned began when he arrived at Los Alamos; there he found and fell in love with a brilliant and beautiful girl, who was tubercular and had been exiled to New Mexico in the hope of stopping the disease. When Feynman arrived, things had got so bad that the doctors gave her only a year to live, but he determined to marry her and marry her he did; and for a year and a half, while working at full pressure on the Project, he nursed her and made her days cheerful. She died just before the end of the war. Freeman Dyson, in letter to his parents on 8 March 1948, as published in From Eros to Gaia (1992), p. 325 In 1988 he revised his statement and declared that:

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„This is not yet a scientific age.“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: Is no one inspired by our present picture of the universe? This value of science remains unsung by singers, you are reduced to hearing not a song or poem, but an evening lecture about it. This is not yet a scientific age.

„If our small minds, for some convenience, divide this glass of wine, this universe, into parts — physics, biology, geology, astronomy, psychology, and so on — remember that nature does not know it!“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: A poet once said, "The whole universe is in a glass of wine." We will probably never know in what sense he meant that, for poets do not write to be understood. But it is true that if we look at a glass of wine closely enough we see the entire universe. There are the things of physics: the twisting liquid which evaporates depending on the wind and weather, the reflections in the glass, and our imagination adds the atoms. The glass is a distillation of the Earth's rocks, and in its composition we see the secrets of the universe's age, and the evolution of stars. What strange arrays of chemicals are in the wine? How did they come to be? There are the ferments, the enzymes, the substrates, and the products. There in wine is found the great generalization: all life is fermentation. Nobody can discover the chemistry of wine without discovering, as did Louis Pasteur, the cause of much disease. How vivid is the claret, pressing its existence into the consciousness that watches it! If our small minds, for some convenience, divide this glass of wine, this universe, into parts — physics, biology, geology, astronomy, psychology, and so on — remember that nature does not know it! So let us put it all back together, not forgetting ultimately what it is for. Let it give us one more final pleasure: drink it and forget it all! volume I; lecture 3, "The Relation of Physics to Other Sciences"; section 3-7, "How did it get that way?"; p. 3-10

„I cannot define the real problem, therefore I suspect there's no real problem, but I'm not sure there's no real problem.“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: We always have had … a great deal of difficulty in understanding the world view that quantum mechanics represents. At least I do, because I'm an old enough man that I haven't got to the point that this stuff is obvious to me. Okay, I still get nervous with it. And therefore, some of the younger students … you know how it always is, every new idea, it takes a generation or two until it becomes obvious that there's no real problem. It has not yet become obvious to me that there's no real problem. I cannot define the real problem, therefore I suspect there's no real problem, but I'm not sure there's no real problem. " Simulating Physics with Computers http://www.cs.berkeley.edu/~christos/classics/Feynman.pdf", International Journal of Theoretical Physics, volume 21, 1982, p. 467-488, at p. 471

„He is by all odds the most brilliant young physicist here, and everyone knows this.“

—  Richard Feynman
Context: He is by all odds the most brilliant young physicist here, and everyone knows this. He is a man of thoroughly engaging character and personality, extremely clear, extremely normal in all respects, and an excellent teacher with a warm feeling for physics in all its aspects. He has the best possible relations both with the theoretical people of whom he is one, and with the experimental people with whom he works in very close harmony.The reason for telling you about him now is that his excellence is so well known, both at Princeton where he worked before he came here, and to a not inconsiderable number of "big shots" on this project, that he has already been offered a position for the post war period, and will most certainly be offered others. I feel that he would be a great strength for our department, tending to tie together its teaching, its research and its experimental and theoretical aspects. I may give you two quotations from men with whom he has worked. Bethe has said that he would rather lose any two other men than Feynman from this present job, and E. P. Wigner said, "He is a second Dirac. Only this time human." J. Robert Oppenheimer, on Feynman's work at Los Alamos, in a letter http://www.lettersofnote.com/2009/12/he-is-second-dirac-only-this-time-human.html to Professor R.T. Birge (4 November 1943)

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