Broken Genius: The rise and fall of William Shockley, by J. Shurkin

By J. Shurkin

This is the 1st biography of William Shockley, founder of Silicon Valley - some of the most major and reviled scientists of the 20 th century. Drawing upon certain entry to the personal Shockley records, veteran expertise historian and journalist Joel Shurkin provides an unflinching account of ways such promise led to such ignominy.

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5 May sent a check. Shockley and Jean bought concert tickets for alternate Thursday evenings for $1 0 the season. 6 Shockley kept to his strenuous physical regimen. He exercised regularly with barbells and found that all but one of his suits grew too tight. 'I wear a coat only a small fraction of the time, whereas I wear a suit all day,' he wrote his mother after she sent him a Christmas check for new clothing. 7 He used the money to buy another suit. He reveled in being in peak physical condition and continued to use sunlamps.

Einstein lived in a universe of whirling things and powerful forces, where everything affected everything else and we could watch it and draw conclusions because the universe was rational and so were we. Although Einstein had overthrown Newton's construct of nature, Einstein accepted his deterministic view of the process of nature. Mathematics describes reality; it is not itself reality. Millikan thought Einstein was wrong and so did Tolman. Shockley would sit in Tolman's office and talk about the battle.

The house was attractive and well kept; the kitchen and bath tiled and as modern as any apartment they visited; and high ceilings and tall windows let in a warm stream of diffuse light. Visitors entered into a central hall. The living room was on the left and the bed~ rooms were in the back of the apartment, behind a dining area. The only drawback was that the second bedroom, Alison's, connected to theirs, reducing their privacy. The neighborhood was an unattractive commercial district just off the Village.

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