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A scientist, in the broadest sense, refers to any person who engages in a systematic
activity to acquire knowledge or an individual that engages in such practices and
traditions that are linked to schools of thought or philosophy. In a more restricted sense,
scientist refers to individuals who use the scientific method. The person may be an expert
in one or more areas of science This article focuses on the more restricted use of the


Science and technology have continually modified human existence. As a profession, the
scientist of today is widely recognized. Scientists include theoreticians who mainly
develop new models to explain existing data and predict new results, and
experimentalists who mainly test models by making measurements — though in practice
the division between these activities is not clear-cut, and many scientists perform both

Mathematics is often grouped with the sciences. Like other scientists, mathematicians
start with hypotheses and then conduct symbolic or computational experiments to test
them. Some of the greatest physicists have also been creative mathematicians. There is a
continuum from the most theoretical to the most empirical scientists with no distinct
boundaries. In terms of personality, interests, training and professional activity, there is
little difference between applied mathematicians and theoretical physicists.

Scientists can be motivated in several ways. Many have a desire to understand why the
world is as we see it and how it came to be. They exhibit a strong curiosity about reality.
Other motivations are recognition by their peers and prestige, or the desire to apply
scientific knowledge for the benefit of people's health, the nations, the world, nature or
industries (academic scientist and industrial scientist).
Historical development

The social roles of "scientists", and their predecessors before the emergence of modern
scientific disciplines, have evolved considerably over time. Scientists of different eras
(and before them, natural philosophers, mathematicians, natural historians, natural
theologians, engineers, and other who contributed to the development of science) have
had widely different places in society, and the social norms, ethical values, and epistemic
virtues associated with scientists—and expected of them—have changed over time as
well. Accordingly, many different historical figures can be identified as early scientists,
depending on which elements of modern science are taken to be essential. Some
historians point to the seventeenth century as the period when science in a recognizably
modern form developed (what is popularly called the Scientific Revolution), and hence is
when the first people who can be considered scientists are to be found. If the category of
"scientist" is limited to those who do scientific research as a profession, then the social
role of scientist essentially emerged in the 19th century as part of the professionalization
of science.

Ancient and medieval sciencest

Louis Pasteur
Louis Pasteur (pronounced: [pastøʁ] December 27, 1822 – September 28, 1895) was a
French chemist and microbiologist born in Dole. He is best known for his remarkable
breakthroughs in the causes and preventions of disease. His discoveries reduced mortality
from puerperal fever, and he created the first vaccine for rabies. His experiments
supported the germ theory of disease. He was best known to the general public for
inventing a method to stop milk and wine from causing sickness - this process came to be
called pasteurization. He is regarded as one of the three main founders of microbiology,
together with Ferdinand Cohn and Robert Koch. Pasteur also made many discoveries in
the field of chemistry, most notably the molecular basis for the asymmetry of certain
crystals. He is now buried beneath the Institute Pasteur.
Louis Pasteur

Early life and biography

Louis Pasteur was born on December 27, 1822 in Dole in the Jura region of France and
grew up in the town of Arbois. There, he later had his house and laboratory, which is now
a Pasteur museum. His father, Jean Pasteur's college headmaster, who recommended that
the young man apply for the École Normale Supérieure, which accepted him, after
recognizing Louis’s natural talent. After serving briefly as professor of physics at Dijon
Lycée in 1848, he became professor of chemistry at the University of Strasbourg,[2] where
he met and courted Marie Laurent, daughter of the university's rector in 1849. They were
married on May 29, 1849 and together they had five children, only two of whom survived
to adulthood, three of them died, two of typhoid and one of a brain tumor. This incident
later persuaded Pasteur to try and find cures for diseases such as typhoid.

Catholic observers often said that Louis Pasteur remained through out his whole life an
ardent Christian. According to his grandson Pasteur Vallery-Radot, however, Pasteur had
only kept from his Catholic background a spiritualism without religious practice. The
well-known quotation attributed to Pasteur: "The more I know, the more nearly is my
faith that of the Breton peasant. Could I but know all I would have the faith of a Breton
peasant's wife." would be apocryphal. Maurice Vallery-Radot, grandson of the brother of
the son-in-law of Pasteur and outspoken Catholic, holds that Pasteur fundamentally
remained catholic, but does not claim that he went to mass.

Work on chirality and the polarization of light

Pasteur separated the left and right crystal shapes from each other to form two piles of
crystals: in solution one form rotated light to the left, the other to the right, while an equal
mixture of the two forms canceled each other's rotation. Hence, the mixture does not
rotate polarized light.

In Pasteur's early work as a chemist, he resolved a problem concerning the nature of

tartaric acid (1849). A solution of this compound derived from living things (specifically,
wine lees) rotated the plane of polarization of light passing through it. The mystery was
that tartaric acid derived by chemical synthesis had no such effect, even though its
chemical reactions were identical and its elemental composition was the same.

Upon examination of the minuscule crystals of sodium ammonium tartrate, Pasteur

noticed that the crystals came in two asymmetric forms that were mirror images of one
another. Tediously sorting the crystals by hand gave two forms of the compound:
solutions of one form rotated polarized light clockwise, while the other form rotated light
counterclockwise. An equal mix of the two had no polarizing effect on light. Pasteur
correctly deduced the molecule in question was asymmetric and could exist in two
different forms that resemble one another as would left- and right-hand gloves, and that
the biological source of the compound provided purely the one type. This was the first
time anyone had demonstrated chiral molecules.

Pasteur's doctoral thesis on crystallography attracted the attention of M. Puillet and he

helped Pasteur garner a position of professor of chemistry at the Faculté (College) of

Albert Einstein
Albert Einstein was born in Ulm, in the Kingdom of Württemberg in the German Empire
on March 14, 1879. His father was Hermann Einstein, a salesman and engineer. His
mother was Pauline Einstein (née Koch). In 1880, the family moved to Munich, where
his father and his uncle founded Elektrotechnische Fabrik J. Einstein & Cie, a company
that manufactured electrical equipment based on direct current

The Einsteins, though Jewish, were non-observant, and their son attended a Catholic
elementary school from the age of five until ten. Although Einstein had early speech
difficulties, he was a top student in elementary school. As he grew, Einstein built models
and mechanical devices for fun and began to show a talent for mathematics. In 1889, a
family friend Max Talmud introduced the ten-year old Einstein to key texts in science,
mathematics and philosophy, including Kant's Critique of Pure Reason and Euclid's
Elements (which Einstein called the "holy little geometry book").

In 1894, his father's company failed: Direct current (DC) lost the War of Currents to
alternating current (AC). In search of business, the Einstein family moved to Italy, first to
Milan and then, a few months later, to Pavia. When the family moved to Pavia, Einstein
stayed in Munich to finish his studies at the Luitpold Gymnasium. His father intended for
him to pursue electrical engineering, but Einstein clashed with authorities and resented
the school's regimen and teaching method. He later wrote that the spirit of learning and
creative thought were lost in strict rote learning. In the spring of 1895, he withdrew to
join his family in Pavia, convincing the school to let him go by using a doctor's note.
During this time, Einstein wrote his first scientific work, "The Investigation of the State
of Aether in Magnetic Fields".

Einstein applied directly to the Eidgenössische Polytechnische Schule (later

Eidgenössische Technische Hochschule (ETH)) in Zürich, Switzerland. Lacking the
requisite gymnasium certificate, he took an entrance examination, which he failed,
although he got exceptional marks in mathematics and physics. The Einsteins sent Albert
to Aarau, in northern Switzerland to finish secondary school. While lodging with the
family of Professor Jost Winteler, he fell in love with the family's daughter, Marie. (His
sister Maja later married the Winteler son, Paul.) In Aarau, Einstein studied Maxwell's
electromagnetic theory. At age 17, he graduated, and, with his father's approval,
renounced his citizenship in the German Kingdom of Württemberg to avoid military
service, and enrolled in 1896 in the mathematics and physics program at the Polytechnic
in Zurich. Marie Winteler moved to Olsberg, Switzerland for a teaching post.

In the same year, Einstein's future wife, Mileva Marić, also entered the Polytechnic to
study mathematics and physics, the only woman in the academic cohort. Over the next
few years, Einstein and Marić's friendship developed into romance. In a letter to her,
Einstein called Marić "a creature who is my equal and who is as strong and independent
as I am." Einstein graduated in 1900 from the Polytechnic with a diploma in mathematics
and physics; Although historians have debated whether Marić influenced Einstein's work,
the overwhelming consensus amongst academic historians of science is that she did not.

Ludwik Hirszfeld
Ludwik Hirszfeld (August 5, 1884 Warsaw – March 7, 1954 Wroclaw) was a Polish
microbiologist and a serologist. He is considered one of the co-discoverers of the
inheritance of ABO blood type. He established a laboratory of experimental medicine at
the State Institute of Hygiene in Poland shortly after World War I. In 1946, he published
his autobiography, The Story of One Life.

After attending the Gymnasium in Łódź, Hirszfeld, born into a Jewish family and later a
convert to Catholicism, decided to study medicine in Germany. In 1902 he entered the
University of Würzburg and transferred in 1904 to Berlin, where he attended lectures in
medicine and philosophy. Hirszfeld completed his doctoral dissertation, "Über
Blutagglutination," in 1907, thus taking the first step in what was to become his specialty.
But first he became a junior assistant in cancer research at the Heidelberg Institute for
Experimental Cancer Research, where E. von Dungern was his department head.
Hirszfeld soon formed a close personal friendship with Dungern which proved to be
scientifically fruitful. At Heidelberg they did the first joint work on animal and human
blood groups which, in 1900, had been identified as isoagglutinins by Karl Landsteiner.

Hirszfeld gradually found the working conditions at Heidelberg too confining and to
familiarize himself with the entire field of hygiene and microbiology, in 1911 he accepted
an assistantship at the Hygiene Institute of the University of Zurich, just after he had
married. His wife, also a physician, became an assistant at the Zurich Children's Clinic
under Emil Feer.
In 1914 Hirszfeld was made an academic lecturer on the basis of his work on anaphylaxis
and anaphylatoxin and their relationships to coagulation; he was also named
"Privatdozent." When World War I broke out Serbia was devastated by epidemics of
typhus and bacillary dysentery. In 1915 Hirszfeld applied for duty there. He remained
with the Serbian army until the end of the war, serving as serological and bacteriological
adviser. At this time, in the hospital for contagious diseases in Thessaloniki he discovered
the bacillus "Salmonella paratyphi" C, today called "Salmonella hirszfeldi."

After the end of the war Hirszfeld and his wife returned to Warsaw, where he established
a Polish serum institute modeled after the Ehrlich Institute for Experimental Therapy in
Frankfurt. He soon became deputy director and scientific head of the State Hygiene
Institute in Warsaw and, in 1924, professor there. In 1931 he was named full professor at
the University of Warsaw and served on many international boards. After the occupation
of Poland by the German army Hirszfeld was dismissed as a "non-Aryan" from the
Hygiene Institute but, through the protection of friends, managed to do further scientific
work at home until February 1941; it was, however, almost impossible for him to publish.

On 20 February 1941 Hirszfeld was forced to move into the Warsaw ghetto with his wife
and daughter. There he organized anti-epidemic measures and vaccination campaigns
against typhus and typhoid, as well as conducting secret medical courses. In 1943 he and
his family fled the ghetto and were able to survive underground through using false
names and continually changing their hiding place; his daughter died of tuberculosis in
the same year.

When a part of Poland was liberated in 1944, Hirszfeld immediately collaborated in the
establishment of the University of Lublin and became prorector of the university. In 1945
he became director of the Institute for Medical Microbiology at Wrocław and dean of the
medical faculty. He taught at the institute, now affiliated with the Polish Academy of
Sciences and named after him, until his death.

Hirszfeld received many honors, including honorary doctorates from the universities of
Prague (1950) and Zurich (1951). He wrote almost 400 works in German, French,
English, and Polish, many in collaboration with other well-known scholars and many
with his wife as well.
Hirszfeld and von Dungern were responsible for naming the blood groups A, B, AB, and
O; previously they were known as groups I, II, III, and IV. He proposed the A and B
designations for the agglutinins. In 1910-1911 Hirszfeld discovered the heritability of
blood groups and with this discovery established serological paternity exclusion. During
World War I he and his wife wrote works on sero-anthropology, which brought forth
fundamental findings on the racial composition of recent and historical peoples.
According to his so-called Pleiades theory of blood groups, the other groups probably
developed from the archaic O group in the course of evolution.

Hirszfeld was the first to foresee the serological conflict between mother and child, which
was confirmed by the discovery of the Rhesus factor. Upon this basis he developed, in
the last years of his life, an "allergic" theory of miscarriage and recommended
antihistamine therapy. Hirszfeld also investigated tumors and the serology of
tuberculosis. His discovery of the infectious agent of paratyphoid C had far-reaching
consequences for differential diagnosis.

In 1914, together with R. Klinger, Hirszfeld developed a serodiagnostic reaction test for
syphilis, which did not, however, replace the Wasserman test introduced in 1906. His
studies of goiter in Swiss endemic regions brought him into sharp disagreement with E.
Bircher over the theory -- today widely confirmed -- that endemic Goitres are caused by
iodine deficiency in water and food, in opposition to the hydrotelluric theory.

Stephen Hawking

Stephen William Hawking, CH, CBE, FRS, FRSA (born 8 January 1942) is a British
theoretical physicist. He is known for his contributions to the fields of cosmology and
quantum gravity, especially in the context of black holes. He has also achieved success
with works of popular science in which he discusses his own theories and cosmology in
general; these include the runaway best seller A Brief History of Time, which stayed on
the British Sunday Times bestsellers list for a record-breaking 237 weeks.[1]

Hawking's key scientific works to date have included providing, with Roger Penrose,
theorems regarding singularities in the framework of general relativity, and the
theoretical prediction that black holes should emit radiation, which is today known as
Hawking radiation (or sometimes as Bekenstein-Hawking radiation).[2] He is a world-
renowned theoretical physicist whose scientific career spans over 40 years. His books and
public appearances have made him an academic celebrity. He is an Honorary Fellow of
the Royal Society of Arts, and a lifetime member of the Pontifical Academy of Science.[4]
On August 12, 2009, he was awarded the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest
civilian award in the United States.

Hawking is the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics at the University of Cambridge (but

intends to retire from this post in 2009), a Fellow of Gonville and Caius College,
Cambridge and the distinguished research chair at Waterloo's Perimeter Institute for
Theoretical Physics.

Hawking has a neuro muscular dystrophy that is related to amyotrophic lateral sclerosis
(ALS), a condition that has progressed over the years and has left him almost completely

Stephen Hawking was born to Dr. Frank Hawking, a research biologist, and Isobel
Hawking. He had two younger sisters, Philippa and Mary and an adopted brother,
Edward. Though Hawking's parents were living in North London, they moved to Oxford
while Isobel was pregnant with Stephen, desiring a safer location for the birth of their
first child (London was under attack at the time by the Luftwaffe). According to one of
Hawking's publications, a German Wehrmacht V-2 missile struck only a few streets
After Stephen was born, the family moved back to London, where his father headed the
division of parasitology at the National Institute for Medical Research.

In 1950, Hawking and his family moved to St Albans in Hertfordshire where he attended
St Albans High School for Girls from 1950 to 1953. (At that time, boys could attend the
Girls school until the age of 10.) From the age of 11, he attended St Albans School,
where he was a good, but not exceptional, student. When asked later to name a teacher
who had inspired him, Hawking named his Mathematics teacher, Dikran Tahta. He
maintains his connection with the school, giving his name to one of the four houses and
to an extracurricular science lecture series. He has visited to deliver one of the lectures
and has also granted a lengthy interview to pupils working on the school magazine, The

Hawking was always interested in science. He enrolled at University College, Oxford

with the intent of studying mathematics, although his father would have preferred he go
into medicine. Since mathematics was not offered at University College, Hawking
instead chose physics. His interests during this time were in thermodynamics, relativity,
and quantum mechanics. His physics tutor, Robert Berman, later said in The New York
Times Magazine:

It was only necessary for him to know that something could be done, and he could do it without
looking to see how other people did it. [...] He didn't have very many books, and he didn't take
notes. Of course, his mind was completely different from all of his contemporaries.

Hawking was passing, but his unimpressive study habits resulted in a final examination
score on the borderline between first and second class honours, making an "oral
examination" necessary. Berman said of the oral examination:

And of course the examiners then were intelligent enough to realize they were talking to someone
far more clever than most of themselves

After receiving his B.A. degree at Oxford University in 1962, he stayed to study
astronomy. He decided to leave when he found that studying sunspots, which was all the
observatory was equipped for, did not appeal to him and that he was more interested in
theory than in observation. He left Oxford for Trinity Hall, Cambridge, where he engaged
in the study of theoretical astronomy and cosmology.

Almost as soon as he arrived at Cambridge, he started developing symptoms of

amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (known colloquially in the USA as Lou Gehrig's disease), a
type of motor neuron disease which would cost him almost all neuromuscular control.
During his first two years at Cambridge, he did not distinguish himself, but, after the
disease had stabilized and with the help of his doctoral tutor, Dennis William Sciama, he
returned to working on his Ph.D. He revealed that he did not see much point in obtaining
a doctorate if he were to die soon. Hawking later said that the real turning point was his
1965 marriage to Jane Wilde, a language student. After gaining his Ph.D., Stephen
became first a Research Fellow, and later on a Professorial Fellow at Gonville and Caius
Hawking was elected as one of the youngest Fellows of the Royal Society in 1974, was
created a Commander of the Order of the British Empire in 1982, and became a
Companion of Honour in 1989. Hawking is a member of the Board of Sponsors of The
Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

Hawking's achievements were made despite the increasing paralysis caused by the ALS.
By 1974, he was unable to feed himself or get out of bed. His speech became slurred so
that he could only be understood by people who knew him well. In 1985, he caught
pneumonia and had to have a tracheotomy, which made him unable to speak at all. A
Cambridge scientist built a device that enables Hawking to write onto a computer with
small movements of his body, and then have a voice synthesizer speak what he has typed.

Jane Hawking (née Wilde), Hawking's first wife, cared for him until 1991 when the
couple separated, reportedly due to the pressures of fame and his increasing disability.
They had three children: Robert (b. 1967), Lucy (b. 1969), and Timothy (b. 1979).
Hawking then married his nurse, Elaine Mason (who was previously married to David
Mason, the designer of the first version of Hawking's talking computer), in 1995. In
October 2006, Hawking filed for divorce from his second wife.

In 1999, Jane Hawking published a memoir, Music to Move the Stars, detailing her own
long-term relationship with a family friend whom she later married. Hawking's daughter,
Lucy, is a novelist. Their oldest son, Robert, emigrated to the United States, married, and
has one child, George Edward Hawking. Reportedly, Hawking and his first family were
reconciled in 2007.