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  • This is my father, Stephen Hawking.

  • and it's a very nice photograph of him

  • he's a very brilliant man

  • he's a theoretical phisicist

  • and that means that he looks for ways

  • to understand the universe around us

  • using the laws of physics.

  • And so he's a very brilliant man and he's the Lucasian professor of Mathematics at Cambridge University

  • so that's a very long way to say it's the same job of the great scientist Isaac Newton once held

  • And he's won many awards and been given many honorary degrees

  • And so you would think that this would have been obvious

  • right from the beginning

  • Well this is the part of the talk where we do some time travel

  • We're going to go back and take a look

  • So here he is

  • This is my father as a small boy with his two sisters

  • And when my father was a young boy

  • and he was at school his teachers didn't think that much of him

  • This is a line from one of his school reports

  • This boy will never amount to anything

  • However his classmates must have noticed something about him

  • Because they nicknamed him Einstein

  • and he did go on to become a scholar

  • And this just shows that kids are so much cleverer than adults

  • Because he became a scholar and he went to Oxford University

  • and he left with a first in honours in Physics

  • and he came to Cambridge to begin his research

  • Now around this time he also found out that he was suffering from a disease

  • And it's a disease called ALS

  • and what it does is it slowly takes

  • away your ability to move your muscles

  • and in later years it's also

  • taken away his natural speaking voice.

  • And so at the end of the talk when you here him talking to you

  • it will sound like a computer is speaking

  • to you but it isn't it's a real man

  • who's using a computer to give himself back the voice that his disease has taken away from him

  • but fortunately some good things also happened to my father in this time

  • he met my mother and he got engaged and he got married

  • and he started work on his thesis

  • and his thesis was called 'Properties of Expanding Universes'

  • and as part of his thesis he managed to prove

  • that the Universe must have had a definite beginning

  • so that's not bad for a bit of post-graduate work actually

  • and now a few years on and here we are

  • this is 1970 in Cambridge

  • and that baby is me

  • and my parent's called me

  • Lucy because the name 'Lucy' comes from the Latin

  • word for light

  • and light is one of the major studies of astrophysicists

  • like my father and so

  • it's a very good name

  • for the daughter of a physcist

  • and the reason I'm showing you this photo from 1970

  • 1970 was an important year for my father

  • he had a Eureka moment

  • and he worked out a very elegant mathematical proof

  • of what happens when two black holes collide

  • he worked out that when two black holes collide they join to form a larger black hole

  • but that they can't split

  • to form two black holes

  • so as you can tell I was a very inspirational

  • thought-provoking baby there

  • * laugh *

  • And here we are this is a few years later

  • and we have moved to CalTech

  • we're now living in California in Pasadena

  • and Caltech is a great centre for scientists

  • on the West Coast of America. And this is

  • 1974 which was another very important year for my father

  • because he's working on his realisations

  • about what happens when a star implodes to form a

  • black hole.

  • So we saw the supernova the great explosion

  • at the end of a star's life a few

  • minutes ago and what happens if it

  • was a big enough star it throws the outer layers off

  • and the inner core can collapse on itself

  • to form a black hole

  • And that's what my father's working on

  • at this point

  • now after this we go back to England and my father

  • takes up his professorship at Cambridge

  • and many many many things happen over

  • the intervening years I grew up

  • become a teenager

  • my school reports were really not so great either

  • * laugh *

  • And my father also has a very

  • very busy time he writes his

  • best-selling work a Brief History of Time

  • now this is a book that has sold all over the world

  • and yet some people claim that not so many people

  • have actually managed to finish it.

  • So that's one of the reasons why we set to work on our

  • children's books we set to work to try and add some extra

  • explanation

  • Now at that time my father also had some some

  • fun things going on in his life. He went on the Simpsons

  • * laugh *

  • He really loved being on the Simpsons

  • the way they gave him helicopter blades for his wheelchair

  • but he did say that he's really glad that in real-life

  • he's not bright yellow

  • *laugh*

  • He also did this he was on Star Trek

  • Paramount studios one day because he was working at Caltech

  • and they asked him if he'd like a part

  • and here he is on the enterprise with the two greatest scientist of all time.

  • in my mind Isaac Newton and Albert Einstein

  • and a few more adventures here he is floating in

  • zero gravity. And this is a really lovely picture

  • because if you look at the size of his smile

  • and you think this is a man who's

  • mind has been free to travel across

  • the whole universe but his body has been and here he is he's free and he's floating.

  • confined to a wheelchair for decades by this point

  • and here he is he's free and he's floating.

This is my father, Stephen Hawking.

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My Father, Stephen Hawking

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    Johnny Tsai posted on 2018/03/14
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