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The Pleasure of Finding Things Out: The Best Short Works of Richard P. Feynman

4.24  ·  Rating details ·  10,200 ratings  ·  619 reviews
El placer de descubrir permite acceder al mundo personal, social y cientíco de Richard Feynman, por ejemplo, a sus aventuras mientras participó en el Proyecto Manhattan, cuando se divertía —y escandalizaba— descifrando las claves de cajas fuertes, o a cómo se inició, siendo un niño, en el estudio de la naturaleza (en el «placer de descubrir»), que terminaría ocupando toda ...more
Paperback, 270 pages
Published April 6th 2005 by Basic Books (first published 1999)
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Carbonbased Bookworm Some stories are different, but they also have a lot of common stories. I would recommend reading them a few years apart (when you forget what was in …moreSome stories are different, but they also have a lot of common stories. I would recommend reading them a few years apart (when you forget what was in the first book) :D(less)

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Darwin8u
Jun 02, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2016
“Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts.”
― Richard Feynman, The Pleasure of Finding Things Out

description

"The first principle is that you must not fool yourself and you are the easiest person to fool."
― Richard Feynman, The Pleasure of Finding Things Out

It is hard to not love Feynman. You can love his as a scientist, as a man, as a genius, as a teacher, as an iconoclast. He is the real deal. 'The Pleasure of Finding Things Out' is a series of 13 speeches, articles, essays, interviews by or wi
...more
Chris
Jan 08, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: science
Here's the problem with having high expectations: they're so often dashed.

In my years trawling the web and being a science nerd, I've heard a lot about Richard Feynman. There are legends about him, that he was the Puck of physics - brilliant, untamed, and really, really funny. When I got the book, I was expecting to read a lightning-quick volley of ideas that would set my mind alight with the wonder and infinite possibilities continued within a lifetime's pursuit of science.

Yeah, that didn't qui
...more
Andrew Martin
Whatever your opinion of Feynman, you need to reconcile the fact that he's got unbearably retrograde opinions:

"When I was at Cornell, I was rather fascinated by the student body, which seems to me was a dilute mixture of some sensible people in a big mass of dumb people studying home economics, etc, including lots of girls. I used to sit in the cafeteria with the students and eat and try to overhear their conversations and see if there was one intelligent word coming out. You can imagine my surp
...more
Claudia
Feb 15, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In my opinion, Richard Feynman was and will remain the most charismatic scientist ever. His lectures are a joy to listen. We need more people/professors like him, to induce in children love for nature, science and curiosity about all the wonders around us.

This book contains some of his most popular lectures, and many of them can be seen in the documentary with the same name, which I wholeheartedly recommend. His enthusiasm and love for nature, science, music and life are contagious and you’ll en
...more
Jim Fonseca
Sep 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
Feynman is brilliant, arrogant and emotionally cold. He was the youngest brilliant mind working on the atomic bomb in Los Alamos in the 1940's and later won the Nobel Prize in physics. This book is an unintegrated collection of essays, transcripts of speeches, interviews and memoirs. As such it gets repetitive. We hear three or four times about how his father taught him to observe and we hear three or four times the identical story about the Cargo Cults in New Guinea after WW II. His father, who ...more
JJ
Apr 22, 2013 rated it really liked it
I love this man. He is brilliant, seems humble, and funny as hell. This is an excellent collection of some of his ideas and stories, mostly about his life experiences and how he became who he was. Even if you do not have a good understanding of physics or even math you will still enjoy this book. It is not a tractate or a manual but rather a collections of anecdotal stories and interviews that allow anyone to take a peek into the mind of this true badass.
Scot Parker
Oct 17, 2019 rated it really liked it
This book is a compilation of some of Dr. Feynman's more notable writings and talks from over the years. I imagine it was a daunting task (even for Feynman himself) to choose which 300 pages of his work to include, given his brilliance and his storied life, but I found the collection here to be an excellent representation of many of the more notable adventures of Feynman's life and some of his more interesting ideas. Of course, only a fraction of his body of work could be included here.

There is
...more
Robert
Sep 09, 2009 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Feynman fans
For those who might not know, Richard Feynman was a Nobel Prize winning theoretical physicist, canny self-promoter and renowned teacher who worked on the Manhatten Project before he had even finished his Doctoral Thesis. Many books by and about him have been published and he has become a kind of miniature industry since his death; almost anybody who attended one of his lectures and scribbled some notes has tried to get them published, there are biographies and a volume of letters, CDs of impromt ...more
Frances
Jun 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
OH MAN I LOVE YOU RICHARD FEYNMAN.

While significantly more technical than Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman! I still really appreciated the writing and his insights into the physical universe. I feel like more teenagers should read Feynman - he believes so strongly in LIVING and THINKING and WORKING while still enjoying oneself that he could do so much good for that age bracket.

Also, as an aside - can you even imagine the conversations between this guy and Neil Degrasse Tyson? CAN YOU.
...more
Peter (Pete) Mcloughlin
Richard Feynman is a founder of Quantum Field theory and among the greatest physicists of the 20th century. He is also an interesting and irreverent personality. Reading him is refreshing and his mercurial skepticism is and down to earth style make him fun to read. He covers personal anecdotes like safecracking at Los Alamos, to his report on the space shuttle and some interesting science talks two of which for saw miniturization as the path forward for computers and see a future in what is call ...more
Dennis Littrell
Apr 17, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: physics
Brilliance and charm: Feynman as a teacher

I very much enjoyed this entertaining and delightful collection of lectures, talks and essays by the world-renown and sorely missed Professor Feynman, Nobel Prize winning physicist, idiosyncratic genius and one of the great men of the twentieth century.

I particularly enjoyed the subtle yet unmistakable way he scolded the people at NASA for putting their political butts before the safety of the space program they were managing in his famous "Minority Repo
...more
Melissa McShane
Jun 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Richard Feynman is one of my heroes, and this short, very accessible book compiles some of his most engaging writings, as well as a couple of interviews and the report he wrote on the space shuttle Challenger disaster. It's not as biographical as Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!: Adventures of a Curious Character or as technical as Six Easy Pieces: Essentials of Physics By Its Most Brilliant Teacher, and I think this would be a good place to start for anyone interested in learning about this f ...more
Nico Scagliarini
I have always been wary of scientists and scientific literature, because being apparently the "artsy" type I have been struggling with hard sciences my whole life: I always found them fascinating and scary at the same time and I only managed to make peace with Mathematics a few years ago. Never with Physics or Chemistry, and I always thought people who do them for a living were some kind of aliens. And they are (and so one more fond of science might say about artists), but after reading this boo ...more
Amira Bousdjira
Richard Feynman, a brillant scientific and a bad philospher ..

--

This is what I got when I've read reviews here about that, but I said NO ! not that much, he should have some beautiful views about philosophy and epistemology, just similar to the beauty of his science and stories.. but unfortunately he hadn't, and the saddest thing was that he tried to answer methaphysical and religious questions using the scientific empirical method. NO Dr.Feynman, don't do it please !

I will investigate the wor
...more
Neeraj Adhikari
Apr 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
it is such a pleasure to read Feynman's speeches. There is a marked difference in the way people talk about something when they enjoy doing the thing and are good at it than when they don't enjoy it very much. That is very noticeable in this book. Feynman has a way of making his sense of wonder and the hunger of understanding things very contagious. The biggest takeaway that a person not involved in the sciences can get from this book is a solid understanding of what is and what is not science.

W
...more
Heather K (dentist in my spare time)


Feynman is brilliant, but I spaced out at times. Some very interesting parts, but many parts difficult for a non-physicist to follow.
...more
Ivan Hrvoić
Sep 23, 2017 rated it really liked it
Everyone in search for a truth has its own road, but all roads in never-ending search for the truth eventually lead to physics. I’ve met Feynman several years ago on mine. Among all other physicist Feynman was the one most distinctively standing out as he was the one who could do the best job of familiarizing the layman with the ways of nature and things hard to grasp intuitively. I also like Sagan, but I found him more like inspirational guy, Feynman was one with magnificent explanations. A lot ...more
Marko
Nov 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: science
This was my first glimpse into the life and mind of Richard Feynman, and boy was it a ride! I had some expectations based on some of the stories I heard and his general fame, but the actual Feynman turned to be much deeper and interesting than just those glimpses in popular myths.

The Pleasure of Finding Things Out is going to give you just that. Through the speeches and essays in this book you will see the workings of an extraordinary mind and learn much about the process of science and its plac
...more
David Hammond
Apr 05, 2012 rated it liked it
This book is a bit of a mixed bag. Some of the stories are entertaining, some show a brilliant scientific mind at work, and some provide thought-provoking insights into the role of science in society. Still there is an inelegance to the whole thing. Most of the pieces are from lectures, talks, and interviews that Feynman gave at one time or another, and while I'm sure he is an engaging speaker, they don't transfer to the page all that well. There are also various repetitions of Feynman's pet ide ...more
Baal Of
Nov 29, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Reading Feynman is a delight. His straight-forward, conversational tone, and his ability to simply explain complex concepts is amazing. His flaws make him seem human, and his humility makes him endearing. It is apparent in this book, and others I've read, that he genuinely wants to communicate not just pontificate. We need more people like him.
Cassandra Carico
Feb 13, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I love this man. How could I not, especially after reading his own words. I feel even more admiration and respect for such a brilliant, yet humble individual. I enjoyed getting a look into the inner workings of his mind.
Sandy Maguire
May 22, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Short and sweet. It's a beautifully inspirational account of what a love of math and physics feels like, on the inside. Highly recommended to anyone who doesn't feel warm and fuzzy about math or physics.
Mustafa Khalid
Dec 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I can't believe how excellent this Book is, he is truly a great story teller and has a quite unique way of thinking , and also a brilliant man. He looks a lot like client eastwood is this book . Don't be fooled by the low quality, worth a readed .
Scott Pierce
Jan 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A very enjoyable read.
Chaunceton Bird
Dec 03, 2017 rated it really liked it
Quality reading from a master of physics with a sense of humor.
Monika
Sep 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: read-in-english
I´m not a scientist. More than that, I don´t really understand the majority of theories or problems in physics and mathematics. Yet I love to listen to highly intelligent people with great sense of humour. And I agree with Richard Feynman - Everything is interesting, it´s just a matter of getting into it deep enough. My problem is I don´t want to go deep enough into physics. :-D

I didn´t really like the chapters where Feynman talks about how to make computers smaller or how to print Encyclopedia
...more
Mike
Apr 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science, biography
I enjoyed What Do You Care What Other People Think? so much I picked this up and jumped right in. There is some overlap in the stories between these two works (and apparently in his other more famous work Surely You're Joking, Mr. Feynman!). I continue to enjoy the perspective that Feynman brings to life. He wants to better understand the world and enjoys solving problems, getting a "kick out of the discovery" of a solution that others can use.

Feynman embraces doubt/uncertainty as the basis for
...more
Menglong Youk
"The Pleasure of Finding Things Out" is a collection of speeches, lectures, and published papers of one of the greatest physicists in the 20th century, Richard P. Feynman's. If you have read his autobiography "Surely You Are Joking, Mr. Feynman", you'll be familiar with his curiosity and playful characters, cracking safes, playing pranks on colleagues, and observing his surrounding no matter how mad he might appear to other people. "I'm not responsible for what other people think I am able to do ...more
Chad
Mar 18, 2014 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I really enjoyed reading my first book by Richard Feynman. The only problem is, this isn't really a book by Richard Feynman. It's a collection of some of his speeches, along with (what has to be only a portion? of) his Minority Report on the Space Shuttle Challenger Disaster. Feynman is brilliant and has a quirky sense of humor and playfulness, and that comes out in his speeches. But it felt like some of the rigor of his scientific prowess was missing, simply because the format of a speech is so ...more
Jerry
I think it’s much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers which might be wrong. I have approximate answers and possible beliefs and different degrees of certainty about different things, but I’m not absolutely sure of anything and there are many things I don’t know anything about…


This is a collection of “the best short works of Richard P. Feynman”. As such, if you’ve read Feynman’s two biographical works, a couple of the chapters there are reproduced here, and many of the stori
...more
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3,927 followers
Richard Phillips Feynman was an American physicist known for the path integral formulation of quantum mechanics, the theory of quantum electrodynamics and the physics of the superfluidity of supercooled liquid helium, as well as work in particle physics (he proposed the parton model). For his contributions to the development of quantum electrodynamics, Feynman was a joint recipient of the Nobel Pr ...more

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When you work at Goodreads, it's pretty tough to keep that Want to Read shelf under control. (And let's be honest, most of us don't even t...
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“I have a friend who's an artist and has sometimes taken a view which I don't agree with very well. He'll hold up a flower and say "look how beautiful it is," and I'll agree. Then he says "I as an artist can see how beautiful this is but you as a scientist take this all apart and it becomes a dull thing," and I think that he's kind of nutty. First of all, the beauty that he sees is available to other people and to me too, I believe. Although I may not be quite as refined aesthetically as he is ... I can appreciate the beauty of a flower. At the same time, I see much more about the flower than he sees. I could imagine the cells in there, the complicated actions inside, which also have a beauty. I mean it's not just beauty at this dimension, at one centimeter; there's also beauty at smaller dimensions, the inner structure, also the processes. The fact that the colors in the flower evolved in order to attract insects to pollinate it is interesting; it means that insects can see the color. It adds a question: does this aesthetic sense also exist in the lower forms? Why is it aesthetic? All kinds of interesting questions which the science knowledge only adds to the excitement, the mystery and the awe of a flower. It only adds. I don't understand how it subtracts.” 923 likes
“We absolutely must leave room for doubt or there is no progress and there is no learning. There is no learning without having to pose a question. And a question requires doubt. People search for certainty. But there is no certainty. People are terrified — how can you live and not know? It is not odd at all. You only think you know, as a matter of fact. And most of your actions are based on incomplete knowledge and you really don't know what it is all about, or what the purpose of the world is, or know a great deal of other things. It is possible to live and not know.” 44 likes
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