Thomas Alva Edison
There are also many photos of Edison. You may google for Edison's photos. However, have you seen this photo? Edison's bust is at the entrance of the U.S. Naval Research Laboratory in Washington, DC, U.S.A. Why is he there.
When George Washington constructed his first cabinet for the new country, he did not think the minister of foreign affairs was necessary because his country was separated from the rest of the world by two oceans. This is the reason why foreign affairs of the United States are steel handled by the prime minister, known as the secretary of state.
By the time of World War I (1914-19), the Atlantic Ocean became a major battle field, and the U.S. Navy felt that big ships with heavy guns were not enough to carry out naval combats. Thomas Edison was called in to construct a research lab to to equip the Navy with electrical and electronic weapons. Edison's Naval Research Laboratory made a decisive contribution to the Navy's control system during World War II.
Indeed, the Navy's support for this facilitate during WWII was a prelude to massive government government supports for university research programs. Funding agencies such as AEC (now DOE), AFOSR, NSF, NASA, etc were created after 1945. When you feel proposal writing is burdensome, remember that it is a culture initiated by Edison.
You have seen this trademark. In 1876, America became one hundred years old. Thomas Edison wanted to start a new history. He opened his own research laboratory in Menlo Park (New Jersey). By 1890, he expanded his lab into Edison General Electric Company. In the meantime, Elihu Thomson and Edwin Houston constructed Thomson-Houston Company to manufacture and market electrical products. In 1892, these two companies merged into General Electric Company with a financial backing from J. P. Morgan.
General Electric Company established itself by portaging light bulbs. You should know who invented the bulb. This is not the only product GE is producing these days. GE says "Progress is our most important product." It is not difficult to figure out whose ideology this is.
You do not have to be a communist to appreciate Karl Marx's discovery. When you pay for your car repair, the statement comes with charges for materials and labor. Indeed, Marx wrote down the capitalistic formula
G' - G = W ,
where G' and G are the values of bricks and muds respectively, and W stands for Marx's surplus value. Marx then said this surplus value comes from manual labor. In this way, Marx established Labor = Money, as Einstein did for Mass and Energy.
You also know Marx's original formula is outdated. In the 1960s, using Marx's original formula, Mao Zhedong attempted to convert China's massive labor power into money by forcing every Chinese family to built a backyard steel mill. He did not realize that Marx'x original formula had been modified to
G' - G = W + R&D .
This new R&D term was introduced by Edison. I thought I invented this new formula, but I should give full credit to Thomas Edison.
Henry Ford was keenly interested in what and how Thomas Edison was doing, and he had enough money to buy Edison's Menlo Park lab in New Jersey and move it to his home base and to convert it to the Edison museum. Why did he do that? Ford at that time needed mechanical engineers, while Edison was developing electrical devices. Ford was not interested in electrical stuff, but was interested in Edison's philosophy of making innovations.
Out of my respect for Henry Ford, I always drive Ford cars. My present car was built in 1999, and thus is ten years old. It is still in an excellent condition and satisfies fully all my transportation needs. Thus, there are no reasons for those automobile companies to change their models every year, but they do. They have to do this in order to increase Marx's surplus value (profit margin) to their products. In this case, the surplus value consists of research and development. Henry Ford got this idea from Thomas Edison.
Edison's Philosophical Inclination
Thomas Edison certainly changed the world. Who then was his philosopher? You have seen a movie entitled "Young Thomas Edison" when you were young. You will recall that Edison becomes creative whenever he has to help others.
In the New Testament, Jesus produces miracles whenever he has to help others. If you do not take those miracle stories seriously, you should know what Jesus said when he had to help a young woman about to be stoned.
In order to read what Thomas Edison said about his country at a difficult time, let us go to http://www.thomasedison.com/. What he says there sounds like a sermon you hear on Easter Sunday.
Yes, Edison had a very strong Christian background. Both his mother and wife were devoted Christians. It appears that Edison's research habit comes from the Gospel of Matthew Chapter Seven.
You will be interested to know that my grandfather was one of Horace Underwood's most trusted Korean friends. I met his grandson in Urbana, Illinois in 2003, and produced this photo. Thanks to my Christian background, I am able to manage the psychology of physicists, and able to get along with my colleagues with different opinions. You may be interested in my earlier webpage entitled Herod Complex dealing with this issue.
Who was Einstein's Philosopher?
It is generally agreed that Einstein was heavily influenced by
the philosophy of Immanuel Kant. I have a separate webpage
dealing with this problem. This page is very frequently
visited by many people. You may be interested in my
It is also known that Kant was influenced by the geographical environment of Koenigsberg (now Russian city of Kaliningrad). In order to study this aspect, I went to Kaliningrad in 2005. You may be interested in my Kaliningrad page.
Feynman as a Philosopher
Again, according to Marx, the philosophers have interpreted this
world in various ways. Let us see how Richard Feynman has
interpreted the physics world. According to him,
the adventure of our science of physics is a perpetual attempt
to recognize that the different
aspects of nature are really different aspects of the same thing.
Then the point is how to change the physics world (according to Marx). One way to change the physics world is to combine all of Feynman's paper into one. Perhaps one should not be too ambitious, but it is worth trying to combine some of them into one. It would be too trivial to combine two papers, but it could be somewhat exciting to combine three of Feynman's papers into one.
Y.S.Kim (January 2009)
copyright@2009 by Y. S. Kim, unless otherwise specified.