Einstein, who would be 131 today, needs no introduction. The foremost physicist of the 20th Century, he held a position at the Institute of Advanced Study, one of the most storied intellectual centers in the world. Nobel Prize. He published papers on such physics-related topics as molecular physics, thermodynamics, the behavior of photons, statistical mechanics, electromagnetism, fluid mechanics, quantum mechanics and so on. Before he became a professor he worked in the Swiss Patent Office for nearly a decade, evaluating the latest electrical inventions.
OK, he was a genius, we get it. But perhaps the best thing we can learn from Al was his humanity. He wasn’t a computer: he made mistakes, he had pet theories that he promoted even though they were patently wrong; he pooh-poohed other science that turned out to be true.
What we can learn from Einstein’s mistakes is that it’s alright to make them ourselves. Let’s make a glorious mess of that next project. Let’s try out something that probably won’t work. Let’s tilt at the windmills of established thought. Who knows, we might learn something?