Friday, October 12

Physics != inventing gadgets

One last comment on the Nobel Prize and the BBC "have your incoherent and uneducated rant" webpage.

One joker complained that the Nobel Prize for Physics is a joke because they didn't give it to Edison.

Edison? Edison? Are you completely utterly frothingly deranged?

OK, apart from the slight problem that the man was an out-and-out thief, he was also by no stretch of the imagination a Physicist. He was an inventor. Then a showman and a marketeer. At *best*, awarding Edison the prize would have been like giving Stuart Parkin a share in this year's prize - Parkin being the researcher who led the IBM team that made the first mass produceable GMR read/write head. But that's a really charitable comparison for Edison (I like Parkin a lot more, and think he should certainly receive an award alongside Fert and Grunberg if the award is for, say, science and technology).

No, awarding Edison would have been like giving the prize to Steve Jobs for inventing the iPod.

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