Published in 2005, The Pleasure of Finding Things Out was written by American physicist and Nobel Prize winner Richard Feynman. One of the greatest scientists of the 20th century, Feynman was not preoccupied with titles or recognition, but rather with just getting down to the science and making discoveries.
The Pleasure of Finding Things Out is a magnificent collection of some of his best works, including interviews, lectures and articles. Physicists will find the lectures particularly interesting as Feynman delves into technical details of computers and atomic theory, also stating that for physics, ‘if you don’t know the Maths, you don’t know the science'.
Feynman was a truly unique individual in his beliefs. He was much more interested in learning the actual truth of science but also satisfied with not knowing rather than assuming something untrue.
“I can live with doubt and uncertainty and not knowing. I think it's much more interesting to live not knowing than to have answers that might be wrong.”
Science was not just his work, but his joy and passion in life. He often would challenge esteemed scientists and other Nobel Prize winners without a second of hesitation to consider their egos, and this attitude is dominant in the book. He would say that:
“Science is the belief in the ignorance of experts.”
Often the life and soul of the party, Feynman was a very funny man, who played the bongos, loved parties and loved playing tricks. He also learned the art of safe-cracking much to the irritation of his peers.
This colorful collection details much of his fascinating life and details of Feynman as a person. The Pleasure of Finding Things Out highlights Feynman as a scientist, genius and teacher. This book is highly recommended to scientists and students alike.