“However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at.” – Stephen Hawking
Born : January 8, 1942 in Oxford, United Kingdom
Died : March 14, 2018 in Cambridge, United Kingdom( at the age of 76)
Nationality : British
Father : Frank Hawking
Mother : Isobel Hawking
Spouse : Elaine Mason(m. 1995-2006) and Jane Hawking(m. 1965-1995)
Children : 3 (Daughter – Lucy Hawking, Son – Timothy Hawking, Son – Robert Hawking)
Hawking’s Books : “A Briefer History of Time,” “The Universe in a Nutshell,” “The Grand Design” and “On the Shoulders of Giants”
Stephen William Hawking is a prominent British cosmologist and theoretical physicist. He is also an author and a Director of Research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology. He was a pioneer in setting out a theory of cosmology.
7 Interesting Facts About Stephen William Hawking :
Hawking received his secondary education at Radlett School and after a year, he attended St Albans Schools. After his graduation, he enrolled at the University College, Oxford to study physics and chemistry. He graduated with a first-class BA (Hon) degree in natural science. In 1966, he received his PhD in applied mathematics and theoretical physics, specialising in general relativity and cosmology at Trinity Hall, Cambridge.
He Wasn’t a Brilliant Student from Start
You can say he was a slow learner during his early years of education. He was considered an average student and didn’t like to learn. However, he picked up tremendously gaining a scholarship to Oxford at age 17. While in high school, he collaborated with some mates to build a computer using recycled equipment.
Diagnosis of ALS
Hawking was diagnosed with Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS), a degenerative motor neuron disease at the age of 21. This was after he fell while ice-skating during his studies at Cambridge University. He was therefore given about 2 ½ years to live. But has lived more than the years he was given.
The Speech Synthesizer
In 1985, while travelling to Geneva, Hawking contracted pneumonia, which almost took his life. He remained unconscious and was put on a life support. He underwent a tracheotomy operation that helps him to breathe but affected his speech. This was what brought about the speech synthesizer. The machine helps him to speak by choosing words in a screen attached to it.
Views about Creation
In his book “The Grand Design”, Hawking expressed a displeasure of the notion that God created the universe. He had previously said that the idea of a creator could be in consonance with modern scientific theories. However, in his book, he noted that Big Bang was the only concept for laws of physics and not a creator.
Hawking is famous for what is known to be the Hawking radiation. According to his theoretical prediction, the black hole emits radiation. He also worked with scientists like Roger Penrose on gravitational singularity theorems.
Hawking has received several awards and honours for his works. He was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom in the US. He was number 25 in the 100 Greatest Britons, a poll organised by the BBC. He was awarded the Eddington Medal and the Pius XI Gold Medal. He is also an Honorary Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts among several others.