Stephen Hawking

  • English physicist
  • Born January 8, 1942

Stephen William Hawking (8 January 1942 – 14 March 2018) was an English theoretical physicist, cosmologist, and author who was director of research at the Centre for Theoretical Cosmology at the University of Cambridge at the time of his death. He was the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge between 1979 and 2009. His scientific works included a collaboration with Roger Penrose on gravitational singularity theorems in the framework of general relativity and the theoretical prediction that black holes emit radiation, often called Hawking radiation.

We think we have solved the mystery of creation. Maybe we should patent the universe and charge everyone royalties for their existence.

There are plenty of dead scientists I admire, but I can't think of any living ones. This is probably because it is only in retrospect that one can see who made the important contributions.

There are no black holes in the sense of regimes from which light can't escape to infinity.

It was Einstein's dream to discover the grand design of the universe, a single theory that explains everything. However, physicists in Einstein's day hadn't made enough progress in understanding the forces of nature for that to be a realistic goal.

Up until the 1920s, everyone thought the universe was essentially static and unchanging in time.

Nothing cannot exist forever.

I'm an atheist.

My goal is simple. It is a complete understanding of the universe, why it is as it is and why it exists at all.

It now appears that the way the universe began can indeed be determined, using imaginary time.

Maybe I don't have the most common kind of motor neuron disease, which usually kills in two or three years.

Scientists have become the bearers of the torch of discovery in our quest for knowledge.

No one can resist the idea of a crippled genius.

The radiation left over from the Big Bang is the same as that in your microwave oven but very much less powerful. It would heat your pizza only to minus 271.3*C - not much good for defrosting the pizza, let alone cooking it.

Why are we here? Where do we come from? Traditionally, these are questions for philosophy, but philosophy is dead.

Why are we here? Where do we come from? Traditionally, these are questions for philosophy, but philosophy is dead.

Time travel was once considered scientific heresy, and I used to avoid talking about it for fear of being labelled a 'crank.'

There are grounds for cautious optimism that we may now be near the end ofthe search for the ultimate laws of nature.

As Irving Good realised in 1965, machines with superhuman intelligence could repeatedly improve their design even further, triggering what Vernor Vinge called a 'singularity.'

I'm not afraid of death, but I'm in no hurry to die. I have so much I want to do first.

I'm not afraid of death, but I'm in no hurry to die. I have so much I want to do first.

Someone told me that each equation I included in the book would halve the sales.

If I had to choose a superhero to be, I would pick Superman. He's everything that I'm not.

It is no good getting furious if you get stuck. What I do is keep thinking about the problem but work on something else. Sometimes it is years before I see the way forward. In the case of information loss and black holes, it was 29 years.

I had a bet with Gordon Kane of Michigan University that the Higgs particle wouldn't be found.

If the rate of expansion one second after the Big Bang had been smaller by even one part in a hundred thousand million million, it would have recollapsed before it reached its present size. On the other hand, if it had been greater by a part in a million, the universe would have expanded too rapidly for stars and planets to form.

I don't have much positive to say about motor neuron disease, but it taught me not to pity myself because others were worse off, and to get on with what I still could do. I'm happier now than before I developed the condition.

The past, like the future, is indefinite and exists only as a spectrum of possibilities.

Imaginary time is a new dimension, at right angles to ordinary, real time.

My advice to other disabled people would be, concentrate on things your disability doesn't prevent you doing well, and don't regret the things it interferes with. Don't be disabled in spirit as well as physically.

We live in a bewildering world.

We live in a bewildering world.

We only have to look at ourselves to see how intelligent life might develop into something we wouldn't want to meet.

So long as the universe had a beginning, we could suppose it had a creator. But if the universe is really completely self-contained, having no boundary or edge, it would have neither beginning nor end: it would simply be. What place, then, for a creator?

My first popular book, 'A Brief History of Time,' aroused a great deal of interest, but many found it difficult to understand.

Evolution has ensured that our brains just aren't equipped to visualise 11 dimensions directly. However, from a purely mathematical point of view it's just as easy to think in 11 dimensions, as it is to think in three or four.

I have so much that I want to do. I hate wasting time.

Women. They are a complete mystery.

Women. They are a complete mystery.

Obviously, because of my disability, I need assistance. But I have always tried to overcome the limitations of my condition and lead as full a life as possible. I have traveled the world, from the Antarctic to zero gravity.

Sometimes I wonder if I'm as famous for my wheelchair and disabilities as I am for my discoveries.