When you rank the all-time brilliant minds, it’s tough not to consider Stephen Hawking.
There’s a lot you probably don’t know about the famous physicist though.
10. Growing up, Hawking’s family kept bees in the basement and made fireworks in their greenhouse.
9. At one point during his high school years, he was ranked third from the bottom of his class in terms of academic performance, further proof that high school success is not an indicator of real life success.
8. One of Hawking’s major achievements was to come up with the theory that the universe has no boundaries (1983).
7. When Stephen Hawking was 65 years old, he was able to experience zero-gravity and float out of his wheelchair. This was the first time that Hawking was free from his wheelchair in four decades and he even did some flips.
6. He was a coxswain on the Oxford rowing team, a position that controls steering and stroke rate.
5. Hawking was born on the 300th anniversary of the death of Galileo, which he is very proud of.
4. Hawking is the most popular physicist since Albert Einstein, making appearances on The Simpsons, Star Trek, a comedy spoof with Jim Carrey on Late Night with Conan O’Brien and on the Big Bang Theory. He even recorded a voice-over on the Pink Floyd song “Keep Talking”.
3. He was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS) a.k.a. Lou Gehrig’s disease at 21 and was told he’d probably only have a few years to live. That was 50 years ago.
2. Hawking speculates that time travel is possible, and that humans may indeed colonize other planets in the future.
1. Hawking believes he can think in 11 dimensions, an idea prominent in String Theory.
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