Ask A Genius 523 – Personal Limitations of Einstein
July 25, 2019
[Beginning of recorded material]
Scott Douglas Jacobsen: What were the personal limitations of Einstein?
Rick Rosner: Einstein spent the second half of his life trying to come up with the Unified Field Theory to bring all the forces of nature into one simple theory. He might have done better at it if he lived 50 years later. He didn’t know all the particles, which we’ve found. There are more powerful mathematical techniques, e.g., Membrane Theory, String Theory, Group Theory, and so on.
On the other hand, String Theory has been 30 years of wheel spinning. Einstein who was born in 1949 instead of 1879 would have been just as fucked in trying to come up with a Unified Field Theory. Maybe not, he may have looked at the decades of additional observations and would have been able to make something out of them.
But after his General Relativity, he may have been able to focus on less grand theories, to use his mind attacking more limited problems than the entire structure of space-time. Still, he was looking for one more huge hit, one more theory. The pursuit of his theory cost him decades of fruitless labour.
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American Television Writer
Scott Douglas Jacobsen
Editor-in-Chief, In-Sight Publishing
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