Saturday, July 16, 2016

For the love of physics

I have a lot of half read books on my kindle. Today I finished reading: For the love of physics by Walter Lewin. Lewin was famous for his physics lectures at MIT, particularly when they were posted online. The most iconic moment in his course was when he let a big pendulum off in front of him.

The book is enjoyable, but also a bit strange. It starts out with popular real world physics, but the second half is about his work on X-ray astronomy. The last chapter is about Modern Art. He is a big collector and he has worked with some artists. I liked the way he used in the end chapter the metaphor "ways of seeing" to unify his interests in art and physics. He is a bit arrogant, but that is normal for a famous physicist.
It is a pity that he was involved in sexual misconduct so his links with MIT were cut.