Stephen Hawking, world renowned physicist passes away aged 76

Stephen Hawking was diagnosed with amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS).

Due to the diagnosis with ALS, Stephen Hawking was unable to read and right. He used to communicate raising his eyebrow to choose letters on a spelling card, a form of augmentative communication. In 1986, web technology company WordPlus created the ‘Equalizer’ application wherein Stephen Hawking could press through a range of phrases. This was followed by Intel and SwiftKey able to create ‘word predictor’ technology, detecting Hawking’s brain patterns.

The Black Hole Radiation was discovered by Stephen Hawking.

Before the Hawking Radiation , in 1970, Stephen Hawking and three scientists proved the existence of a ‘singularity in space time’, proving that space and time started due to the big bang and will end in black holes. Four years later, along with physicist Jacob Bekensetein, they proved that the black hole should thermally create and emit sub-atomic particles until they exhaust their energy.

Stephen Hawking leaves a long lasting legacy to University of Cambridge.

Joined University of Cambridge in 1962 as a PhD student, Hawking’s thesis was titled ‘Properties of expanding universe’ in 1965. Fun fact here, it was made available on the internet last year to celebrate ‘Open Access Week’ and due to large numbers of requests by researchers worldwide. Besides, Hawking was appointed the Lucasian Professor of Mathematics, a position once held by Sir Isaac Newton. Hawking held the position for 30 years till 2009 after which he was appointed the Dennis Stanton Avery and Sally Tsui Wong-Avery Director of Research in the department of applied mathematics at University of Cambridge.

He was a popular author and TV figure too.

Some of his famous authored books include ‘A Brief History of Time’, ‘Black Holes and Baby Universes and Other Essays’, ‘God Created the Integers: The Mathematical Breakthroughs That Changed History’ and his most recent book was ‘My Brief History’ in 2013. His first book ‘A Brief History’ was a bestseller for 237 weeks, selling more than ten million copies in 20 years. Moreover, he appeared on TV shows like ‘The Simpsons’ and ‘The Big Bang Theory.’

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