Public lecture by Stephen Hawking

This coming Sunday, 11 May 2008, Stephen Hawking is going to deliver his very first public lecture in South Africa. He has been invited by the African Institute of Mathematics, which is situated in Muizenberg. And we’ve got tickets!

The director of AIMS, Professor Fritz Hahne said:

“Hawking is thought of as the greatest mind in physics since Albert Einstein. With similar interests – discovering the deepest workings of the universe – he communicates mysterious matters not just to other physicists but also to the general public.” 

The title of the lecture is “Universe” (how appropriate!), and the venue is the Muizenberg Pavilion. There will be a couple of other speakers too:

  • Naledi Pandor, Minister of Education, who will introduce the event;
  • David Gross, an American particle physicist and string theorist who was awarded the 2004 Nobel Prize in Physics for his discovery of asymptotic freedom;
  • George Smoot, an American astrophysicist and cosmologist who was awarded the 2006 Nobel Prize in Physics together with John C Mather for his work on cosmic background radiation using the Cosmic Background Explorer Satellite (COBE);
  • Michael Griffin, an American physicist and aerospace engineer; as the current Administrator of NASA since April 2005, he oversees the future of human spaceflight, the Hubble telescope and NASA’s role in understanding climate change. 

These are all pretty amazing people in their fields. Although I know less than zilch about any of these topics, I really look forward to the talks, as they are bound to be fascinating.

And maybe it’ll inspire me to give Hawking’s A Brief History of Time another try. It’s been sitting on our bookshelf for many years, sadly still unread…

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