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Old 02-24-2008, 05:33 PM   #16
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He'd done all his major work before he was twenty five. He wasn't really interested in publishing, but only did so because his friends urged him.
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Old 02-24-2008, 06:04 PM   #17
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Well, hell! Charles Darwin. His work has done more than that of any other scientist to slowly erode religion. It will, eventually, drive religion to its well-deserved grave.

Revolution is not something fixed in ideology, nor is it something fashioned to a particular decade. It is a perpetual process imbedded in the human spirit--Abbie Hoffman.
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Old 02-24-2008, 07:46 PM   #18
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Isaac Newton was off his fucking rocker, and I respect that. Apart from the celibacy that's already been mentioned, he spent a good portion of his later life huffing mercury vapour while cocking about with alchemy, and researching the occult and the apocalypse. He was also a total cunt, to the point of - and I only vaguely remember this - relentlessly hounding one chap to the point of suicide.

Despite this, he filled his time with gravity, optics, calculus, mechanics and combating counterfeit coin-makers. What a character.
In all fairness, it was later in life he went 'round the bend on the alchemy- knowing full well that he could get excommunicated for it at any time while he was at it. Hadn't heard the driving to suicide part. Didn't he refuse a chair over the religious orders crap that came with it? Something dim and misty occurs to me about that.
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Old 02-24-2008, 08:09 PM   #19
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Kary Mullis. He's a bit of a douche on global warming, believes HIV doesn't really cause AIDS and generally speaking he gets along with almost no one, but he developed PCR which opened up an entire generation of kinship determination, genetic fingerprinting, phylogeny analysis, etc.

After winning his nobel prize, he became a professional beach bum spending his days surfing, boozing and chasing tail. He was on LSD when he developed PCR, and he's stated the drug deserves all the cred.
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Old 02-24-2008, 09:11 PM   #20
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It's certainly not hereditary.

!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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Old 02-27-2008, 06:52 AM   #21
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Favourite scientist? Do you mean based on what they have done in science or just the person in general?

In terms of their work Newton, Fermi, Einstein and Dirac are, to my mind, among the most outstanding, but when it comes to pure awesomness you can't beat Feynman. Wankers like Greene and Kaku score nothing for their popular books in my opinion, and their scientific contribution is negligible since they are both essentially working on mathematics. Similarly, Hawking is very famous for his work on cosmology, but there are many people as accomplished as him, but you won't have heard of them because they don't make for such good news stories due to their ability to walk around. My actual favourite scientists however are some guys at CERN who made antihydrogen, not because of the antihydrogen (which is pretty cool) but because of some outrageous booze fuelled events that I enjoyed in Geneva with them a couple of years ago.

You can always turn tricks for a few extra bucks. If looks are an issue, there's the glory hole option, but don't expect more than ... tips.
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Old 02-27-2008, 08:44 AM   #22
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Similarly, Hawking is very famous for his work on cosmology, but there are many people as accomplished as him, but you won't have heard of them because they don't make for such good news stories due to their ability to walk around.

Wait just a minute-You expect me to believe-That all this misbehaving-Grew from one enchanted tree? And helpless to fight it-We should all be satisfied-With this magical explanation-For why the living die-And why it's hard to be a decent human being - David Bazan
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Old 02-27-2008, 10:47 AM   #23
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Kary Mullis. He's a bit of a douche on global warming, believes HIV doesn't really cause AIDS and generally speaking he gets along with almost no one, but he developed PCR which opened up an entire generation of kinship determination, genetic fingerprinting, phylogeny analysis, etc.
More than that - useful advances and applications of genetic engineering would have been damn near impossible without it.
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Old 03-04-2008, 04:11 AM   #24
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Stop the Holy See men!
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Old 03-04-2008, 05:26 AM   #25
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I don't really believe in "favorites" because I believe every scientist is special in his or her own way. However, I really enjoy reading Michael Shermer's work, and I've read some of his books which I found amazing. I think I should subscribe to the skeptic's society magazine.
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Old 03-05-2008, 02:41 PM   #26
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Vera Rubin
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Old 03-05-2008, 06:04 PM   #27
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Hmmm... I'll have to go with Zefram Cochrane.

Seriously, though, I suppose I'd pick Robert Goddard, although if asked tomorrow I might have a different answer. He was ridiculed for most of his life, and only later was the worth of his work acknowledged. Well, acknowledged in America, at least. Germany realized how valuable his liquid-fueled rockets could be much earlier.
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Old 03-06-2008, 12:26 AM   #28
The Awoken One
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Well, hell! Charles Darwin. His work has done more than that of any other scientist to slowly erode religion. It will, eventually, drive religion to its well-deserved grave.
It was quite surprising to me as well that nobody picked Darwin.

I do not feel obliged to believe that the same God who has endowed us with sense, reason, and intellect has intended us to forgo their use.
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