Scientist-musician wins Nobel Prize

Happy to hear that Saul Perlmutter has won a Nobel Prize today! We met at SciFoo 2010 and I’ve spoken with him last year (and earlier this year, according to my email archives) about a music-in-physics course he organised. He’s also a musician himself, and plays violin. Congrats to Saul, and I will schedule an interview once I make my way out of the backlog of other things. (Same goes for the 15 or so other people who I promised to catch up with and who may not have won any Nobel Prizes.)

Einstein’s Universe

Last week, James Dacey let me know about an interview he did for PhysicsWorld: In the first video, particle physicist Brian Foster and violinist Jack Liebeck talk about Einstein’s musical career and about a show they do together called “Einstein’s Universe”, which is a lecture interspersed with music. In the second video, both men play a duet together.

In the video of the interview, James asks Jack about the link between science and music, and the violinist answers: “A lot of physicists, and generally scientists and mathematicians love playing music. It’s difficult to put your finger on what the exact link is, but I should think there is some kind of link in the discipline of reading a code on a page and turning it into music, and in the day to day life of trying to work out what’s going on in their particular discipline through looking at the codes that come out and deciphering how things are put together.”