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John A. Wheeler, PhD, dead at 96

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yevaud

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<p>John A. Wheeler, a visionary physicist and teacher who helped invent the theory of nuclear fission, gave black holes their name and argued about the nature of reality with Albert Einstein and Niels Bohr, died Sunday morning at his home in Hightstown, N.J. He was 96.</p><a name="secondParagraph"></a> <p>The cause was pneumonia, said his daughter Alison Wheeler Lahnston. </p><p>Dr. Wheeler was a young, impressionable professor in 1939 when Bohr, the Danish physicist and his mentor, arrived in the United States aboard a ship from Denmark and confided to him that German scientists had succeeded in splitting uranium atoms. Within a few weeks, he and Bohr had sketched out a theory of how nuclear fission worked. Bohr had intended to spend the time arguing with Einstein about quantum theory, but &ldquo;he spent more time talking to me than to Einstein,&rdquo; Dr. Wheeler later recalled.</p><p>As a professor at Princeton and then at the University of Texas in Austin, Dr. Wheeler set the agenda for generations of theoretical physicists, using metaphor as effectively as calculus to capture the imaginations of his students and colleagues and to pose questions that would send them, minds blazing, to the barricades to confront nature.</p><p>Max Tegmark, a cosmologist at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, said of Dr. Wheeler, &ldquo;For me, he was the last Titan, the only physics superhero still standing.&rdquo;&nbsp;</p><p><strong><font color="#0000ff">God Weeps.</font></strong></p> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <p><em>Differential Diagnosis:  </em>"<strong><em>I am both amused and annoyed that you think I should be less stubborn than you are</em></strong>."<br /> </p> </div>
 
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star_sirius

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You are number 1 and da man for the black holes!! <img src="http://sitelife.livescience.com/ver1.0/content/scripts/tinymce/plugins/emotions/images/smiley-cry.gif" border="0" alt="Cry" title="Cry" /> <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> <font size="0" color="#10bdee"><strong>A dazzling bluish luminosity from A distant south pacific.</strong></font><p><br /><img id="cb51e87e-8221-424c-8ff2-78c95122196c" src="http://sitelife.livescience.com/ver1.0/Content/images/store/11/15/cb51e87e-8221-424c-8ff2-78c95122196c.Large.jpg" alt="blog post photo" /></p> </div>
 
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DrRocket

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I just finished reading Wheeler's autobiography, <u>Geons, Black Holes&nbsp;& Quantum Foam.</u>&nbsp; It is superb.&nbsp; Probably the best exposition of the history of the development of physics from the 1930s through 1998 that I could imagine.&nbsp; Highly recommended. <div class="Discussion_UserSignature"> </div>
 
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