Tales of scientific discoveries & inventions

Tales of scientific discoveries & inventions

EUREKA! Greatest Scientists Who Changed the World

EUREKA! Greatest Scientists Who Changed the World

The facts that we take for granted today, were in fact in contradiction to what was believed centuries ago. Say, we all know that our planet earth revolves around the Sun. But for a long long time, people believed that earth was at the center of the universe and all celestial bodies revolved around it. It took Copernicus several years to make his discovery about earth revolving around the sun public, for he feared facing the wrath of the church, which had supreme authority then.

Or say, we know that the brain controls the biological functioning of our body. But, prior to Galen discovering this fundamental aspect of how our bodies function, people believed that it was the heart which controlled other organs.

These and other such fundamental findings became the foundation for greater discoveries and inventions later on. These discoveries paved the way for tremendous advancements in the field of science and technology, which has in fact changed the way we think and the way we perceive the various phenomena we witness, which in turn has changed the way we live.

S Ananthanarayanan’s EUREKA! is devoted to the discoveries and inventions which revolutionised the way we understood things. The book is a tribute to the scientific questioning, reasoning and discovery of great scientists, which uncovered myriad mysteries of nature.

EUREKA! which covers over twenty centuries, starting with the ancient Greeks, gives readers an insight into the scientific contributions of sixty scientists who are considered as the main torchbearers in the fields of mathematics, astronomy, mechanics, electricity, magnetism, the nature of materials, atomic science, physiology, genetics and medicine.

The author has presented short accounts of the lives and works of luminaries such as Pythagoras, Copernicus, Kepler, Newton, Dalton, Darwin, Marie Curie and many more. By narrating the story behind a discovery, such as — how an obsession with making the finest lens led to Antonie van Leeuwenhoek, a draper by profession, discovering microbes — makes for interesting reading. The chapters arranged from the earliest to the most recent, helps one understand the scientific progression over the ages.

Reading this book will help both children and adults alike in knowing how we, humans, came about understanding: the cosmos, the microscopic world of bacteria, the growth of anatomy and medicine, electricity, X-rays and radioactivity, genetics and evolution, the quantum theory, gravity and black holes, DNA and genetic engineering.

As the book progresses from one scientist busting a commonly held belief to another uncovering a secret, the readers are bound to be enlightened. The book notes how these great minds overcame challenges through persistence and cleared several misconceptions, thereby opening our eyes to the world of science.

In simple language, the author even describes the various experiments performed and the theorems deduced by the respective scientists as he narrates their tales. This enables the readers get the complete picture and truly appreciate their contributions.  In his afterword, the author predicts that new directions in science in the coming decades will have answers that we cannot even imagine. And isn’t that how it has been down the ages — what would be discovered next could not have been foreseen.