Friday, January 06, 2012

Greatest Living Physicist?

I'm always uncomfortable with question like this. Not only is it almost impossible to pick one, but what exactly do we mean by "greatest"? Is it in size of the person's waistline?

In any case, Physics World is conducting a poll on on their Facebook page on who people would consider as the "greatest" living physicist. They proposed or nominated 5 names:

Philip Anderson
Stephen Hawking
Steven Weinberg
Frank Wilczek
Ed Witten

At least they included a condensed matter physicist!

You can cast your vote there if you wish. I'd rather ask you on who you think should have been included for consideration on that list, and why.



niklas said...

I'd vote for Murray Gell-Mann. Quarks, strangeness, SU(3) symmetry and VA weak interactions.

Dileep Sathe said...

I consider Frank Wilczek as the greatest living physicist because I saw exceptional flexibility in the thinking in his Guest Column, Physics Today, October 2004 - the month in which he shared the Nobel Prize for Physics. There he honestly confessed that he had maximum difficulty in learning classical mechanics. In fact, this shows a tip of the iceberg of a global and chronic problem in mechanics education. As I am working in this field for 35 years, - if you want to know why his confession appealed me, then write me on dvsathe[at]