Interview: How to be a theoretical physicist with Jim Gates
Jim Gates is a gifted mathematician, astrophysicist, and philosopher. He is a professor of Physics and Director of the Center for String & Particle Theory at University of Maryland. We chat about his days as a military child, MIT, and he explains complex math — it’s makes sense!.
Below is a summary of our interview:
Imagination is more important than knowledge – Albert Einstein
Jim talks about his early days as army brat in Canada to escaping in comic books and how he fell in love with science. We even chat about the night when he learned how to do complex math overnight.
Jim talks about his mom dying when he was 11 years old and how he used science fiction to getting away from the pain.
When Jim arrived at MIT it was the first time he really had to apply himself. He met fellow black scholars including future astronaut Ron McNair and future college president Shirley Ann Jackson.
Jim’s work now
Jim explains string theory in 60 seconds. You have to listen to really get it 🙂
What’s exciting Jim now
Jim is looking for mathematics in super symmetry that could accurately explain phenomenon in nature. It’s called adinkra which is named after symbols in west Africa. Let’s just say we get real close to real version of the Matrix.
Book Jim Recommends: Technology and the Dream: Reflections on the Black Experience at MIT, 1941-1999, Superspace: One Thousand and One Lessons in Supersymmetry (For physicists)
Helpful Habit: Persistence
Internet Resource: The arxiv
What’s Your Purpose: To do Physics
Where to follow Jim
Find Jim Gates on Youtube
Let Jim know how much you enjoyed this interview.
Every one of us is so unique that the universe took 13.8 billion years to create one of you.
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