Dubious NY Times Op Ed of the Week. Here's what seems to be the gist of Simon Singh's argument regarding what he calls Albert Einstein's "greatest failure" (not really sure what Singh is saying--and if you thought the "failure" was E's inability to find the unified field theory you're wrong):
1. Albert Einstein published papers in the same year (1905) proving the existence of the atom, showing the validity of quantum physics and introducing special relativity. He was not a "perfect genius," however.Previous Dubious NY Times Op Eds:
1. The tsunami had nothing to do with restoring balance to the ecosystem but it's really cool to talk about Gaia.
2. We shouldn't do something because it's right but because scientists have learned monkeys do it.
Yeah that premise is kind of hollow. He's relying on a straw-man genius myth for a narrative hook, which is kind of shallow. I looked up Simon Singh and found out that his brother, Tom Singh, is listed next to the Queen of England in the British National Sunday Times top 1000 rich list for 2003 (£250m)(#133 on the list). The dude started New Look. Simon Singh has a degree in particle physics, and has just written a book on the Big Bang. He's also done a bunch of TV and other pop-science stuff.
I noticed that the NY Times said this was the most emailed editorial that day. I didn't look, but I'd like to think it was a flood of people saying "What a dumb essay!"
well...it is the YEAR OF PHYSICS