Date: Wed Oct 7 15:23:52 2009

Author: Lally, Sean

Subject: Re: Richard Feynman


Sad, but not surprising. Most of my students in astronomy have never heard of Carl Sagan, and he was everywhere when I was a youth. But a few had seen Neil de Grasse Tyson and several heard of Hawking. Feynman didn't have quite the pop culture cache in his day, and without that... he's just another dead Nobel prize winner. And most of what Feynman did isn't as immediately accessible as, say, Galileo. Now, if they hadn't heard of him, or Newton.... that would depress me.

-----Original Message-----
From: [] On Behalf Of David Willey
Sent: Wednesday, October 07, 2009 2:33 PM
Subject: [tap-l] Richard Feynman

This just happened and caused me to pause.
An hour ago I took a survey of the students in my calculus based Physics
1 class, there's just over 30 of them and they are mostly sophomore
engineers, with a couple of science majors. We are just beginning
Conservation of Energy and I was about to read a quote from Chp 4 of
Feynman's lectures.

None, not one, had ever heard of Richard Feynman. Should this worry me?

P.S. Part of their homework this week end is to write half a page on
Feynman. I wonder how many copies of the Wikipedia page I'll get.