I find the sad, if not surprisng, news that the physicist Hans Bethe died on Monday. He was one of the last great titans from the age of Quantum mechanics and the Manhattan Project. From reading James Gleick's Genius
, which was very influential on me as a teenager, I will always carry an impression of him as he was to Richard Feynman: an affectionate, brilliant, mentor. I had the privilage of seeing him speak in 1999 at the Centennial conference of the American Physical Society in Atlanta. Maybe it was the dazzle of his accomplishments, but he exuded both brilliance and heart. The New York Times
has a long obituary of him, though I find it rather overfocused on his policy and weapons work. Cornell, which he built into a top-notch physics school, has a nice webpage with some videos of him lecturing
. Geomblog tells the delightful story of the alphabetical article
He told us how the sun shines. Rest in peace, Dr. Bethe.