China

Credit: Robert Neubecker

From physics to revolution and back

As a boy, I was not interested in science; I was interested in girls. Upon graduating from high school in Hong Kong, I did not particularly want to work in science; I just wanted a job, because I rarely left the dinner table with my stomach full. For graduate school, I went to Columbia University with a scholarship. There, I was surrounded by Nobel laureates—Isidor Isaac Rabi, Polykarp Kusch, Tsung-Dao Lee—and laureates-in-waiting: James Rainwater, Jack Steinberger, Leon Lederman. The most important moment in my physics education was when I noticed Lee standing next to me in the men's room, peeing. Nobel laureates are ordinary people, I learned, just like you and me. (Keep reading at Science.)

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