Stephen Hawking | Braves by their Broken Hearts!

"However difficult life may seem, there is always something you can do and succeed at. It matters that you should not give up!".. Some beautiful words by an amazing person.. He had nothing, but proved everything.. He couldn't run or walk, couldn't even eat on his own, couldn't stand on his feet, couldn't even open his mouth and couldn't live a life like us.. All he could do is, expressing his emotions it the way he liked the most.. He is Stephen Hawking, the world's most inspiring and unforgettable man of science..

It was 1963, Hawking was diagnosed with an early-onset slow-progressing form of motor neurone disease that gradually paralysed him over the decades. He had lost even his ability of speech..
Hawking achieved commercial success with several works of popular science in which he discusses his theories and cosmology in general. His book 'A Brief History of Time' was a global sensation! Hawking was a recipient of the Presidential Medal of Freedom, the highest civilian award in the United States. In 2002, Hawking was ranked number 25 in the BBC's poll of the 100 Greatest Britons. He died on 14 March 2018 at the age of 76, after living with the disease for more than 50 years. What is the inspiration that drove this man towards success?!

[Video]Where there is life, there is a Hope...

Stephen Hawking | Biographical Sketch
  • Hawking was born on 8 January 1942 in Oxford to Frank and Isobel Eileen Hawking. Hawking's mother was born into a family of doctors in Glasgow, Scotland. Despite their families' financial constraints, both parents attended the University of Oxford, where Frank read medicine and Isobel read Philosophy, Politics and Economics. Isobel worked as a secretary for a medical research institute, and Frank was a medical researcher. Hawking had two younger sisters, Philippa and Mary, and an adopted brother, Edward Frank David.
  • Hawking attended two independent schools, the Radlett School and St Albans School. The family placed a high value on education. Hawking's father wanted his son to attend the well-regarded Westminster School, but the 13-year-old Hawking was ill on the day of the scholarship examination. His family could not afford the school fees without the financial aid of a scholarship, so Hawking remained at St Albans. 
  • A positive consequence was that Hawking remained close to a group of friends with whom he enjoyed the manufacture of fireworks, model aeroplanes and boats, and long discussions about Christianity. From 1958 on, with the help of the mathematics teacher Dikran Tahta, they built a computer from clock parts, an old telephone switchboard and other recycled components.
  • Although known at school as "Einstein", Hawking was not initially successful academically. With time, he began to show considerable aptitude for scientific subjects and, inspired by Tahta, decided to read mathematics at university. Hawking's father advised him to study medicine, concerned that there were few jobs for mathematics graduates. As it was not possible to read mathematics there at the time, Hawking decided to study physics and chemistry. Despite his headmaster's advice to wait until the next year, Hawking was awarded a scholarship after taking the examinations in March 1959.
  • Hawking began his university education at University College, Oxford, in October 1959 at the age of 17. For the first 18 months, he was bored and lonely. He found the academic work "ridiculously easy". His physics tutor, Robert Berman, later said, "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."
  • Hawking met his future wife, Jane Wilde, at a party in 1962. The following year, Hawking was diagnosed with motor neuron disease. In October 1964, the couple became engaged to marry, aware of the potential challenges that lay ahead due to Hawking's shortened life expectancy and physical limitations. Hawking later said that the engagement gave him "something to live for". The two were married on 14 July 1965 in their shared hometown of St Albans.
  • After being diagnosed with motor neurone disease, Hawking fell into a depression. Though his doctors advised that he continue with his studies, he felt there was a little chance. His disease progressed more slowly than doctors had predicted. Although Hawking had difficulty walking unsupported, and his speech was almost unintelligible, an initial diagnosis that he had only two years to live proved unfounded.
  • Hawking had a rare early-onset slow-progressing form of motor neuron disease (MND, also known as amyotrophic lateral sclerosis, "ALS", or Lou Gehrig's disease), a fatal neurodegenerative disease that results in the death of motor neurones in the brain and spinal cord, which gradually paralysed him over decades.
  • The problems worsened, and his speech became slightly slurred and his family noticed the changes. The MND diagnosis came when Hawking was 21, in 1963. At the time, doctors gave him a life expectancy of two years.
  • In the late 1960s, Hawking's physical abilities declined. He began to use crutches and could no longer give lectures regularly. As he slowly lost the ability to write, he developed compensatory visual methods, including seeing equations in terms of geometry.
  • When Hawking began his graduate studies, there was much debate in the physics community about the prevailing theories of the creation of the universe, the Big Bang and Steady State theories. Inspired by Roger Penrose's theorem of a spacetime singularity in the centre of black holes, Hawking applied the same thinking to the entire universe. During 1965, he wrote his thesis on this topic. Hawking's thesis was approved in 1966. Hawking received a research fellowship at Gonville and Caius College at Cambridge. He obtained his PhD degree in applied mathematics and theoretical physics, specialising in general relativity and cosmology, in March 1966.
  • Hawking was fiercely independent and unwilling to accept help or make concessions for his disabilities. He preferred to be regarded as "a scientist first, popular science writer second, and, in all the ways that matter, a normal human being with the same desires, drives, dreams, and ambitions as the next person."...
  • His wife, Jane Hawking, later noted, "Some people would call it determination, some obstinacy. I've called it both at one time or another.". He required much persuasion to accept the use of a wheelchair at the end of the 1960s, but ultimately became notorious for the wildness of his wheelchair driving.
  • In 1970, Hawking postulated what became known as the second law of black hole dynamics, that the event horizon of a black hole can never get smaller. He proposed the four laws of black hole mechanics, drawing an analogy with thermodynamics.
  • Hawking's speech deteriorated, and by the late 1970s he could be understood by only his family and closest friends. To communicate with others, someone who knew him well would interpret his speech into intelligible speech.
  • His results, which Hawking presented from 1974, showed that black holes emit radiation, known today as Hawking radiation, which may continue until they exhaust their energy and evaporate. Initially, Hawking radiation was controversial. By the late 1970s and following the publication of further research, the discovery was widely accepted as a significant breakthrough in theoretical physics. Hawking was elected a Fellow of the Royal Society (FRS) in 1974, a few weeks after the announcement of Hawking radiation. At the time, he was one of the youngest scientists to become a Fellow.
  • Hawking did not oppose the existence of a Creator or God, asking in A Brief History of Time "Is the unified theory so compelling that it brings about its own existence?". In his early work, Hawking spoke of God in a metaphorical sense. In A Brief History of Time he wrote, "If we discover a complete theory, it would be the ultimate triumph of human reason. For then we should know the mind of God.". In the same book he suggested that the existence of God was not necessary to explain the origin of the universe. Later discussions with Neil Turok, a South African Physicist, led to the realisation that the existence of God was also compatible with an open universe.
  • Motivated by the need to finance his children's education and home expenses, he decided in 1982 to write a popular book about the universe that would be accessible to the general public. Instead of publishing with an academic press, he signed a contract with a mass market publisher, and received a large advance for his book. A first draft of the book, called 'A Brief History of Time', was completed in 1984.
  • For his communication, Hawking initially raised his eyebrows to choose letters on a spelling card, but in 1986 he received a computer program called the "Equalizer" from Walter Woltosz, CEO of Words Plus. In a method he used for the rest of his life, Hawking could now simply press a switch to select phrases, words or letters from a bank of about 2,500–3,000 that were scanned. The program was originally run on a desktop computer. David, a computer engineer, adapted a small computer and attached it to his wheelchair.
  • Hawking was an atheist, and believed that, "the universe is governed by the laws of science". He stated, "There is a fundamental difference between religion, that is based on authority, and science, which is based on observation and reason. Science will win because it works."
  • One of the first messages Hawking produced with his speech-generating device was a request for his assistant to help him finish writing A Brief History of Time.  The book was published in April 1988 in the US and in June in the UK, and it proved to be an extraordinary success, rising quickly to the top of best-seller lists in both countries and remaining there for months. The book was translated into many languages, and ultimately sold an estimated 9 million copies.
  • Hawking gradually lost the use of his hand, and in 2005 he began to control his communication device with movements of his cheek muscles, with a rate of about one word per minute. With this decline there was a risk of his developing locked-in syndrome, so Hawking collaborated with Intel researchers on systems that could translate his brain patterns or facial expressions into switch activations. After several prototypes that did not perform as planned, they settled on an adaptive word predictor made by the London-based startup SwiftKey, which used a system similar to his original technology. Hawking had an easier time adapting to the new system, which was further developed after inputting large amounts of Hawking's papers and other written materials. It uses predictive software similar to other smartphone keyboards.
  • Hawking also maintained his public profile, including bringing science to a wider audience. A film version of A Brief History of Time, directed by Errol Morris and produced by Steven Spielberg, premiered in 1992. Hawking had wanted the film to be scientific rather than biographical, but he was persuaded otherwise. The film, while a critical success, was not widely released. A popular-level collection of essays, interviews, and talks titled 'Black Holes and Baby Universes' was published in 1993, and a six-part television series 'Stephen Hawking's Universe' and a companion book appeared in 1997.
  • In 2007, Hawking and his daughter Lucy published George's Secret Key to the Universe, a children's book designed to explain theoretical physics in an accessible fashion and featuring characters similar to those in the Hawking family. The book was followed by sequels in 2009, 2011, 2014 and 2016.
  • By 2009, he could no longer drive his wheelchair independently, but the same people who created his new typing mechanics were working on a method to drive his chair using movements made by his chin. This proved difficult, since Hawking could not move his neck, and trials showed that while he could indeed drive the chair, the movement was sporadic and jumpy. Near the end of his life, Hawking experienced increased breathing difficulties, often resulting in his requiring the usage of a ventilator, and being regularly hospitalised.
  • In late 2006, Hawking revealed in a BBC interview that one of his greatest unfulfilled desires was to travel to space. On hearing this, Richard Branson, a british business magnate offered a free flight into space, which Hawking immediately accepted.
Stephen Hawking during his space flight
  • Hawking died at his home in Cambridge, England, on 14 March 2018, at the age of 76. His family stated that he "died peacefully". He was eulogised by figures in science, entertainment, politics, and other areas.
  • Hawking was born on the 300th anniversary of Galileo's death and died on the 139th anniversary of Einstein's birth.
  • In 2006, Hawking posed an open question on the Internet, "In a world that is in chaos politically, socially and environmentally, how can the human race sustain another 100 years?", later clarified, "I don't know the answer. That is why I asked the question, to get people to think about it, and to be aware of the dangers we now face."
  • Hawking stated, "I regard it as almost inevitable that either a nuclear confrontation or environmental catastrophe will cripple the Earth at some point in the next 1,000 years", and considered an "asteroid collision" to be the biggest threat to the planet.
  • Hawking viewed spaceflight and the colonisation of space as necessary for the future of humanity.
  • In 2011, narrating the first episode of the American television series Curiosity on the Discovery Channel, Hawking declared, "We are each free to believe what we want and it is my view that the simplest explanation is there is no God. No one created the universe and no one directs our fate. This leads me to a profound realisation. There is probably no heaven, and no afterlife either. We have this one life to appreciate the grand design of the universe, and for that, I am extremely grateful."


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