Y. S. Kim's Princeton Page



  • Wherever I go, I brag about my Princeton background. Thus, people ask me the following questions.

    1. Am I the first Korean to receive a PhD degree from Princeton?

    2. Did I meet Einstein and talk to him?

    The answer is No to both questions, but I have a story to tell.

  • Syngman Rhee received his degree in 1910, and he is known as Woodrow Wilson's most accomplished student. He was the first and founding president of the Republic of Korea (South Korea). He was a dictator, but is regarded as the father of democracy in Korea modeled after American democracy.

    Click here to enlarge this image.

  • When I went to Princeton as a first-year graduate student in 1958, Einstein was already in heaven. How can you talk to a person in heaven?

    Do you know how Moses talked to God? He wrote five books about God, They are the first five books of the Old Testament.

  • The best way to talk to Einstein is to write a book or books addressing the issues in which Einstein was most interest. Einstein received his Nobel prize in 1921, but

      not for his E = mc 2 ,

    which is regarded as one of the most important formulas for our civilization. Thus, the best way to talk to Einstein is to tell him what happened to this formula since his time.

  • Eugene Paul Wigner was regarded as the No. 2 man (after Einstein). He received his Nobel prize in 1963, but

    on his little groups dictating the internal space-time symmetries of particles in Einstein's Lorentz-covariant world.

    In 1986, I told Professor Wigner that his 1939 paper deserved one full Nobel prize as Einstein's E = mc2 does, by showing the following table.

    Contents of Einstein's E = mc2


    Particle Massive/Slow between Massless/Fast
    Einstein Energy
    Momentum
    E = p2/2m E =
    [m2c4 + (cp)2]1/2
    E = cp
    Wigner Helicity
    spin, Gauge
    S3
    S1 S2
    Winner's
    Little Groups
    Helicity
    Gauge Trans.
    This table is from one of my papers published in 1986.


  • This table forces us to go back to the century-old problem. One hundred years ago, Niels Bohr was worrying about discrete energy levels of the hydrogen atom. Einstein was interested in how things look to moving observers. Bohr and Einstein met occasionally to talk about physics. Did they ever talk about moving hydrogen atoms. The answer seems to be No. Thus, there are two distinct routes to take.

    1. Since they did not ask this problem, we should resolve this issue.

    2. Since they did not address this issue, the problem does not exist. It is foolish to waste time on the problem that does not exist.

    Which route would you take? Click here for an interesting story. Another story.

Richard Philips Feynman (1919-1988)

  • Richard Feynman was the most creative American physicist in the 20th Century. He received his PhD degree in 1942. His thesis advisor was John A. Wheeler.

  • In 1966, I received a death sentence (ordering me to stop doing physics) from the physics community for publishing a paper not consistent with Princeton's view. I survived only because Feynman in 1970 expressed his view consistent with mine. From there, I regained my courage. Feynman was my Savior.

  • It is fun to talk about Feynman. I maintain my own Feynman site. Feynman was a very colorful person. You will also be interested in the following pages.
    1. Artist. Feynman was an artist. He used to draw pictures when he was doing physics. This resulted in Feynman diagrams.
    2. Rio de Janeiro. Feynman used to there very often to join Brazil's Samba artists.

  • According to Feynman, 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.

    1. Feynman published approximately 150 papers. Thus it is fun to see whether those papers can be combined into one. I could not do this, but I was able to combine three of them into one. Click here for a story.

    2. Eugene Wigner also published many papers. In 1939, Wigner published his paper on internal space time symmetries of elementary particles. In 1953 with Inonu, he published a paper on group contractions. It is fun to combine those into one paper.

    3. Paul A. M. Dirac was another great physicist of the past century. He was a beautiful writer, and his papers are like poems. However, his paper does not contain any figures or illustrations. On the other hand, Feynman was a cartoonist. He drew pictures and diagrams to express his ideas. Thus, it is fun to translate Dirac's poems into cartoons.

    4. I published about 200 papers. According to Feynman's definition of physics, I should be able to combine all those into one paper. This is not an easy job. Click here for a story.



    while preparing a paper for publication (1961). I did not have a PC at that time.


    Einstein's house in Princeton

    My Einstein page.

  • More about Princeton

    1. Princeton campus, but an isolated place, one-hour train ride from New York.

    2. New York City. I used to go to New York very often when I was in Princeton (1958-62).

    3. Parades of Princeton alumni. Lifestyle of affluent Americans.

    4. Princeton stories. I like to tell you stories.

    5. Digital Literature. I learned how to construct webpages during my Princeton years (1958-62). At that time, the concept of internet was far beyond human imagination. How was this possible?

  • Click here for my home page.

    1. My style page, and travel page.

    2. Washington, DC. I received my PhD degree from Princeton in 1961 and became in 1962 an assistant professor at the University of Maryland near Washigton, DC. This was the best decision I made in my life.

  • copyright@2019 by Y. S. Kim. The source of Feynman's graduation photo is unknown. Please tell us if you know.