April 1, 1996
My name is Albert Einstein. I was born on March 14, 1879 in Ulm,
Germany. I was not an inventor in the conventional sense. I was a physicist
and theorist. My inventions were not tangible things, but ideas I put on paper
and may later on have led to inventions. I was not a good student in school. I
did not pay attention to teachers because I found their lectures and teachings
boring. Often I would skip class to go study physics on my own. By the age
of twelve I had taught myself Euclidean Geometry, and slowly beginning to
develope my own theories in physics.
My first theoretical paper was on Brownian motion. The paper
discussed the significant predictions I made about particles that are randomly
distributed in a fluid. My next paper was on the photoelectric effect, which
contained a revolutionary hypothesis on the nature of light.
I proposed that
under certain circumstances light can be considered as consisting of particles,
and I also hypothesized that energy carried by any light particle, called a
photon, is proportional to the frequency of the radiation. The formula for this
is E=hv, where E is the radiation, h is a universal constant known as Planck's
constant, and v is the frequency of the radiation. This proposal, that the
energy contained within a light beam is transferred by individual units, or
quanta, contradicted the hundred year old tradition of considering light as a
manifestation of continuous processes.
My third and most impotant paper, 'On the Electrodynamics of
Moving Bodies', contained what has become known as the special theory of
relativity. Since the time of Sir Issac Newton, scientists had been trying to
understand the nature of matter and radiation, and how they interacted in...