notgettingenough 's Reviews > Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!

Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman! by Richard P. Feynman
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Apr 25, 12

bookshelves: science-sort-of
Read from October 09, 2010 to April 25, 2012


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10/09/2010 page 29
8.0% "I learned there that innovation is a very difficult thing in the real world."

Comments (showing 1-10 of 10) (10 new)

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notgettingenough "I learned there that innovation is a very difficult thing in the real world."

A friend was begging me not long ago to write a book about this. He thinks I'm good at writing stories and that this is what is needed. He was saying that for an innovation to succeed it needs one of three groups to be interested: bureaucracy, academia or business. If none of these take it up, it dies. He wanted a story book of the wonderful inventions that have never seen the light of day.

Despite his passion, I was more than dubious. Has this really not been done? Maybe a bunch of times? If it has, would the idea be that this would be different because it would be looking at the sociological conditions that led to its failure?

I don't know....but if anybody else happens to think it's a good idea, I would be interested to hear!


message 2: by David (new)

David Do you think it's true that the greatest geniuses are above ambition and so remain unknown to the world?


message 3: by notgettingenough (last edited Nov 09, 2010 06:59AM) (new) - added it

notgettingenough I reply without understanding what the word 'genius' means or how to use it.

(a) what is ambition? A genius obviously has ambition. He does what he does with ambition, doesn't he? To understand something or to show or invent or compose or...Do you mean the ambition to make a name?

(b) Even if a genius had the ambition to be known, he would not necessarily succeed in doing so.

But yes, is there somebody out there who does know the secrets of string theory and we will never know he knows? Surely so!

The year Terence Tao won the Fielding it was jointly with a Russian who declined it on the basis that he wasn't part of the maths community and had no interest in this changing. So one may even become known and shun it and one wonders what interesting things this Russian might be coming up with. Is he a genius? Tao is claimed to be....so maybe. I guess we might never know.


message 4: by David (new)

David Salander could have had the consideration to scribble her alternative and supremely elegant Fermat proof down before she was shot in the head.


notgettingenough David wrote: "Salander could have had the consideration to scribble her alternative and supremely elegant Fermat proof down before she was shot in the head."

Yes. Actually, those odd themes irked me. Abuse of women and then followed by higher maths...what's that all about.


message 6: by David (new)

David Why don't you write a learned monograph on it?


notgettingenough David wrote: "Why don't you write a learned monograph on it?"

Excuse me. Is that a sense of humour poking out? Possibly in the form of sarcasm???? English-style?


message 8: by David (new)

David notgettingenough wrote: "Excuse me."

Why, what did you do?


Manny David wrote: "Do you think it's true that the greatest geniuses are above ambition and so remain unknown to the world?"

If you haven't read Stanislaw Lem's "Odysseus of Ithaca" (in A Perfect Vacuum), then you should do so! The story is a wonderful exploration of this idea.


notgettingenough Manny wrote: "David wrote: "Do you think it's true that the greatest geniuses are above ambition and so remain unknown to the world?"

If you haven't read Stanislaw Lem's "Odysseus of Ithaca" (in A Perfect Vacuum), then you should do so! The story is a wonderful exploration of this idea."


True.


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