Newton created Calculus during a Pandemic | Jed Buchwald and Lex Fridman | Summary and Q&A

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August 29, 2021
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Lex Clips
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Newton created Calculus during a Pandemic | Jed Buchwald and Lex Fridman

TL;DR

Newton's productivity during a pandemic serves as motivation for people to get things done during lockdown.

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Questions & Answers

Q: What were Newton's major achievements during the pandemic?

Newton made significant progress in the development of calculus and optical discoveries, marking the "miraculous year" of 1666. His notebooks show extensive development even before that time.

Q: How did going home during the pandemic contribute to Newton's productivity?

Going home gave Newton the space and resources to work on his experiments. He utilized his room, made modifications to the window, and conducted optical experiments at home. He also built an all chemical furnace at Cambridge.

Q: Did Newton's lectures improve when he became a professor at Cambridge?

Newton became the second Lucasian professor at Cambridge, where he had rooms and resources to conduct experiments. While he didn't have to give lectures regularly, he still had to deposit notes, which preserved his work for the future.

Q: How did Newton's productivity compare to modern-day students during the pandemic?

Newton's achievements during the pandemic serve as motivation for modern-day students. At the age of 24, he made groundbreaking discoveries, which suggests that age is not a limiting factor in achieving success.

Summary & Key Takeaways

  • Newton's lectures during a pandemic were so complicated that they were compared to lecturing to the walls with nobody listening.

  • Newton's journey during the pandemic resulted in significant innovation, including developments in calculus and optical discoveries.

  • Going home during the pandemic gave Newton the opportunity to work through ideas and conduct experiments, leading to his remarkable achievements.

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